[Ed. – Poor babies.]
Funny how when the shoe is on the other foot it doesn’t fit quite so well, isn’t it? As part of its War on Trump, the establishment media consistently conflates two only superficially related, but contextually quite different or actually unrelated things — “Russian hacking” and “changed the vote for Trump” is a good example. But conservatives are wise to their game, and so they gave “fake news” right back to them with both barrels. Of course, it’s an easy case to make when you have a former purveyor of fabulism like Dan Rather now teaching journalism ethics.
So, naturally, the [Washington] Post writer blames the current non-utility of the “fake news” slam on… the Right:
“The speed with which the term became polarized and in fact a rhetorical weapon illustrates how efficient the conservative media machine has become,” said George Washington University professor Nikki Usher.
As Jeremy Peters wrote in the New York Times: “Conservative cable and radio personalities, top Republicans and even Mr. Trump himself . . . have appropriated the term and turned it against any news they see as hostile to their agenda.”
So, here’s a modest proposal for the truth-based community. Let’s get out the hook and pull that baby off stage. Yes: Simply stop using it. Instead, call a lie a lie. Call a hoax a hoax. Call a conspiracy theory by its rightful name. After all, “fake news” is an imprecise expression to begin with.