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Not "fake news", but too narrow in scope, needing greater depth

By       Message Michael Payne     Permalink    (# of views)   14 comments

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Our fake leader, Donald Trump, just loves to rant and rave about the "fake news" he says is being reported on CNN and MSNBC. Of course, Fox News gets a free pass since its hosts continually praise him for his supposed achievements. What Fox is presenting to the public can be thought of as "delusional news."

But let's set Fox News and their Trump puppets aside and conduct a critique of CNN and MSNBC news reporting. I have been watching these two major networks for some years, mostly because there's not much in the way of good competition out there. Now here's what I mean by "too narrow in scope, needing greater depth.

It gets kind of tedious when watching these two TV news channels because their formats are not very expansive. The lion's share of the time right now is spent on Trump, Trump, and more Trump.

When they are not critiquing Trump's pathetic performance they go non-stop on Michael Cohen, one of Trump's former top lawyers, now under investigation by both Robert Mueller and the federal prosecutors in the Southern District of New York.

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Cohen has not been indicted but these prosecutors are hot on his tail, mainly about what he knows about Trump and Russian meddling in the 2016 election. He could be charged with a crime at any time. They, as is usually the case, want to "flip" him and have him spill the beans on Trump.

If you had been watching either of these two channels during the past week you might have seen endless discussions about Cohen and speculation about whether he will implicate Trump in some kind of illegal activity.

One show after another with each succeeding host talking about Cohen. It was as if each show and each host were reading from the same show script.

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And then we have Stormy Daniels, the porn queen, and Trump's former girlfriend. She and her lawyer Michael Avenatti get star billing and a huge amount of coverage.

While these individuals get a lot of air time the champion, the featured subject above all others, is Trump. We see what he stated in every one of his tweets. The TV screen is filled almost every day, all day long, with reporting on his never-ending controversies.

But it's unfair to just criticize. So, let's give credit where credit is due. These networks are pointing out how Trump continues to attack them and their reporters. At his rallies, he continues to call the media the enemy of the people and refers to their reporting as fake news.

Jim Acosta, one of CNN's top reporters, and his fellow reporters have shown great courage in covering these Trump rallies. Trump continually attacks them verbally and his continuous inflammatory tirade against them is inciting his thuglike supporters to threaten these reporters. Acosta is warning that they could, at any time, attack him or the others physically. Pure madness!

This president is a disgrace to this country and what it stands for. He appears to be spinning out of control, exhibiting increasing anger and hatred. Never in the history of this country has it had this kind of pathetic president. If he lasts in office by the time the 2020 elections come around, the people of America need to generate a massive, landslide vote to rid this country of him.

When the Helsinki summit ended there was an endless portrayal of how Trump and Putin acted; Trump acting very much like Putin's puppet. We saw continuous replays of what he and Putin said.

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After a while watching these channels gets mighty boring. Now, I'm not saying that they have to radically change their formats, which are largely political, but I do think that they need to expand them and mix in other very interesting subjects and issues.

There are so many subjects, issues and problems in America about which the American people know very little and would like to be better informed. Here are some:

Most Americans know little to nothing about the raging civil war in Yemen, let alone that the US military is supporting Saudi Arabia, which is virtually destroying that country. The US government is supplying Saudi Arabia with a wide array of powerful weapons. Americans also don't realize that the US has been conducting drone strikes in Yemen for some years.

This conflict which began in 2015 pits the Iran-backed Houthi rebels against Saudi-backed government forces. Saudi Arabia has been conducting a massive bombing campaign all across that tiny nation.

The UN estimates that, since the start of the conflict in 2015, over 15,000 citizens of that country have been killed, over 2 million have been displaced, with more than 22 million are in dire need of food, medical supplies, and other necessities of life.

I have read that MSNBC has barely mentioned anything about that war in a year's time, and during that same period, it did 455 segments on Stormy Daniels. How's that for in-depth journalism?

Now let's turn to the ongoing war in Syria and, again, the fact that Americans know very little about what is going on, which countries are involved, and what each side is doing.

This conflict started in 2011 when Syrian rebels began a large-scale protest against President Assad. It quickly escalated as the Islamic State began taking control of parts of that nation. In 2015 the US, Britain, and France, together with other Middle East allies, initiated an air campaign that so far has conducted over 11,000 air strikes.

In 2015 the Syrian government requested Russia to enter into the war on its side. Then Russia and Iran joined with Syrian government forces and, over the next several years, proceeded to take back much of the territory that the opposition forces had controlled.

This is another tragic humanitarian crisis with the deaths of over 400,000 people, 5.6 million have fled the country, and 6.5 million have been internally displaced.

And the greatest danger that exists there is that Russia and the US are conducting military operations in very close proximity, and if some unexpected, mistaken attack by one side on the other, it could ignite a massive war. And, while all this is going on, CNN and MSNBC are not informing the American people.

Congress continues to fund the massive US military empire that spans the planet and acts in the role of the world's policeman. The latest military budget totals some $717 billion, and when all other factors of expense are included, the final total rises to close to a trillion dollars.

The US military has some 255,000 troops located in 80 countries at 800 bases. As we are often reminded the #1 priority of this government is the safety and security of the American people.

Well, if that is the #1 priority then something is terribly wrong. While we have all those military personnel at all those bases and countries to maintain the safety and security of America, here in our own country we are living in a very violent society in which any American can be gunned down by a domestic terrorist at any given time in any place in America.

Is this government providing for the safety and security of the American people? Not on your life and here's why:

With all this violence and mass shootings taking place this government and this Congress refuse to do anything to strengthen our gun control measures to stop this bloodbath.

While these mass shootings and extreme violence in our cities is going on do we see CNN and MSNBC conduct discussions to try to determine how to bring this situation under control.? No, we see nothing of the kind; but we see a lot of Trump, Cohen, and Stormy Daniels.

There are many other important subjects and issues that these two cable networks could feature that would inform the American people of what is happening and why. For example, they could be having discussions about the need to develop solar power and other forms of alternate energy.

They could conduct in-depth discussions about the need to appropriate the necessary funds to restore our deteriorating national infrastructure; also to address climate change and global warming.

This very complex problem of climate change that threatens the future of our planet has been very controversial and has many naysayers; so often we hear it is a hoax. Again, few Americans understand the complexities of this growing problem.

These networks can do better, they must do much better by making their formats more expansive and segments far more interesting. And, by doing so, it will serve to improve their ratings.

But if they don't wake up and make significant improvements then they will see a steady decline in their viewers who can't take much more of Trump, Stormy Daniels, and Michale Cohen.

Michael Payne


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Michael Payne is an independent, progressive activist. His writings deal with social, economic, political and foreign policy issues. He is a featured writer on Opednews and Nation of Change and his articles have appeared on many other websites (more...)

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