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Monday, December 02, 2019

Live by the Lie, Die by the Lie

After the media went all out to televise the impeachment committee hearings, a majority of independent voters switched from supporting impeachment to opposing impeachment.

In October, 48% of independents supported impeachment while 39% opposed it. Now 49% of independents oppose impeachment while only 39% still support it. The neat, almost perfect reversal, can be credited to the media’s fateful decision to televise the committee hearings across the networks.

The media’s error was entirely predictable.

The Russia investigation looked good in the media frame until the Mueller report came out and then Mueller was dragged in to testify about it. The impeachment bid looked good in the media lens until people actually watched committee hearings and didn’t see any of what the media had been touting.

Live by the lie, die by the lie.

The paradox of impeachment is that the media’s con artists invented it, but stories alone, the commanding heights of communications, can’t actually close the deal. Like every con job, at some point the mark actually wants to see the million dollars that Nigerian prince is offering, the brand-new Tesla for only five grand, and the papers for the Brooklyn Bridge. Individual marks can be strung along indefinitely, but there are limits to how much an entire nation can be conned. Even by the media.

Abe Lincoln had something to say about that. But, then again, he was a Republican.

The media has excelled at creating investigation narratives. Its take on the Russia investigation or the Ukraine investigation convinced a lot of people that President Trump really was guilty. But you can’t impeach someone in the media. Nor can you actually try them on MSNBC. And that’s the problem.

Elections are where the media’s power lies because all it has to do is convince voters to cast a ballot, without ever having to show its work or prove its claims. With impeachment, it has to do both.

Impeachment failed to flip Republicans. It’s, at best, deadlocked among independents. And that leaves the Democrats isolated on impeachment. Poll after poll shows that most people are no longer persuadable on impeachment. Only 13% of respondents in the latest Q poll say they’ll change their minds on impeachment. That’s not a lot to work with here. And it dooms the impeachment project.

The impeachment push was never going to work without the cooperation of GOP Senate members. Without them, it becomes a purely partisan project to influence the 2020 election. And the turnout boost will be more likely to help Trump than the Democrats. It also poisons the well for further proceedings down the road. House Democrats focused on impeachment above all else. Not only is it failing, but it leaves voters with the impression that trying to impeach Trump is all the House does.

And it’s not even very good at that.

The one thing the House Democrats tried to do, they failed at. That leaves them with a choice of admitting defeat and appearing completely useless. Or dragging out the process and then, possibly crippling their ability to take the White House, to avoid admitting just how useless they really are.

If the Democrats want to blame anyone, they can blame the media. It was the media that pushed them to impeach Trump. That happened over the protests of Speaker Pelosi and warnings from Democrat strategists. But the media needed the clicks, the eyeballs, and the money. And it promised the Dems that it could carry impeachment forward no matter how weak the case might be.

The media tried to do its part. But the Democrats couldn’t deliver anything of actual substance. Again.

There are important lessons here for Republicans and Democrats about the limits of media power. The ability of a single radical political faction to control the national debate has critically damaged the country. But, at the same time, narrative power isn’t the same thing as actual political power.

The Democrat plan to stop Trump has always been built on feeding lies through the media to justify abuses of power by elected and unelected officials. But the lies fall apart once they’re examined in the harsh light of the law and that just leaves the abuses of power. And yet the Democrats still believe that the same strategy will work once their ability to communicate their message improves.

But messaging has never been their problem. The facts of the case are where it all goes wrong.

The media is the strongest asset of the Left. And it’s also its greatest weakness. Not just because the media’s business model is imploding, its credibility is tanking, and it’s transitioning to a charity. The Left believes that narrative is superior to reality. If you believe something, you can do it. A compelling story is all you need to bring change. Facts don’t matter when emotions are played on by propagandists.

Narratives are effective. But the Left always overestimates the power and price of ruling by narrative.

The people most vulnerable to narratives love stories. Con artists start out by fooling themselves. Then they fool their victims. Liars lie to themselves. The media constantly lies to itself. As does the Left.

The media keeps promoting implausible schemes for taking down President Trump. These schemes, whether it’s the 25th Amendment or a House impeachment plot, are fanciful and implausible. They all depend on the power of the media to convince Republicans to act against their own interests. But the Republicans weren’t fooled by this scheme. The media fooled itself into believing it could fool them.

That’s the price of being a liar. When you live by the lie, you’re also fatally poisoned by those lies.

Liars lose touch with reality. The cost of the con is no longer knowing what’s true. Democrats were sucked into an alternate reality in which Trump is a Russian agent and was on the verge of being overthrown by a secret deep state operation. When they actually tried to make these laughable fantasies real, the collision with reality unraveled both the plans and the lies, leaving a disaster area.

The deep state operatives volunteering for duty proved pathetically nerdy and inept. The same intelligence agencies who have bungled everything they ever touched abroad did not magically become more competent when they tried to intervene in domestic elections. Fantasy met reality. Reality won.

The entire Russia scheme was based on a document out of the Clinton campaign that was so badly put together that a random gas station attendant from Milwaukee could have done a better job. When Mueller actually went in front of the cameras, the great detective could hardly remember his own name.

After all this work, the deep state has been reduced to guys like Vindman and Strzok, men with impressive titles and poor self-control, who are as useless at home as they are abroad.

What did the media expect? Did their own reporting really lead them to expect that the NSC, the CIA, or the FBI would suddenly turn into the master strategists that they have never been for a single second?

You can’t consistently win battles in the real world when you aren’t living in the real world.

The coup plans worked spectacularly in the pages of the press, the broadcasts of network news, and the viral stories and videos splashed across social media, but they completely fell apart in the real world.

The bungled impeachment once again shows the limits of media power. It offers a warning about the dangers of believing your own hype. The media abandoned the vestiges of journalism for narrative in order to gain power. And yet, instead of gaining power in exchange for losing an eye, it went blind.

The media inhabits a compelling fantasy world. It is able to occasionally realize this fantasy by imposing it on enough gullible people. But convincing a lot of people to live in your fantasy world isn’t a strength. It’s a weakness. The temporary power gained in the moment is more than offset by the disasters that follow. Just look at any Communist country, its fantasy economics, and the disastrous outcome.

Democrats rule through media power and Republicans envy that power. But the power to lie to people is also a curse that entraps the liar. Believing lies makes you dumb. And dumb people do dumb things.

Like impeachment.

Impeachment isn’t a brilliant strategy. It’s the outcome of lies, greed, and stupidity. But the greedy dumb liars thought that it was a brilliant plan at the time. Because they wanted to believe it.

The entire disastrous venture shows the limits of media power, of lies and living out a fantasy.

There are two ways to fight a liar. You can fight him with lies or with the truth. Not the mere assertion of truth. Convincing people of what is or isn’t true through mere words is an uphill battle. The real truth lies not in a page, but in reality. Reality is a painful way of testing lefty schemes and lies that has cost hundreds of millions of lives throughout history. But some lies are easier to test and damage the liar.

The Democrats plotted to rule through media lies. That strength became their weakness. Addiction to fantasies is harder to shake than heroin or cocaine. And their own lies are leading them to disaster.

Live by the lie, die by the lie.





Daniel Greenfield is a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center. This article previously appeared at the Center's Front Page Magazine.

Thank you for reading.



10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Excellent...............................Johnny Gee

JackIAm said...

Daniel, this reads as a masterwork. Evil, and megalomaniac rulers, both individuals and groups, have ruled through lies in history. So correct, that throughout history have hundreds of millions of people been led to cruel painful tortures and deaths. This article deserves widest dissemination - should be the lead into school courses, such as Western Civ., more!!!

Illustrated are the term “Grubering”, deceiving the willfully, carelessly, poorly educated gullibles for the temporary and poor success of the ill-conceived Obamacare, and the democrats willful gullible lie that they (democrats founding purpose!) should have slavery forever, and 190 years history of RESISTING by every means possible the ascension to equality of the former black slaves, and now, everyone to be slaves to globalists, not the least democrats.

Through the ages, democrats have usually not cared for, or disregarded the consequences downstream of their poorly thought through schemes. Rarely considering our Constitution, and founding documents, principles, except as limiting, instead as an obstacle to their constant infatuation with meddling with ever more central rules, laws, CONTROl, and scheming to get rich off the taxpayer. They have not learned, in now 190 odd years.

They have as ever, been showing disregard again, of truth, and honor, of the American citizen, who are to them still slaves, but now, expanded to all of us, black, white, latino, et al. Having lied so much many are living in fairy dust, moonbeams, unicorns surrounding their lives, deeply in need of the grounding of sweet reality. Everyone needs to pull together, to fight the dishonor primarily the democrats have accorded to our rock solid, miraculous, Founding principles, documents, our Democratic, Constitutional, Republic, under GOD!

cjk said...

The only problem with this article is that it differentiates between the MSM and the Democratic Party. They are two arms of the same body working for the same goals

Anonymous said...

Effective use of the human brain to survive
in the physical and social milieu is a big
deal. Bill Clinton could pass a polygraph
by convincing himself of his lies. He was
very good, and must have consumed lots of
attention maintaining his simulations. No
wonder Hillary was constantly rescuing him.

As shown by the recent Veritas CNN exposee,
getting legions to march to Zucker’s whim
breeds cynicism. The best a CNN loyalist
can claim is lying for noble cause.

Or, with manifest truth as a guide, Bjorn
Lomborg, Milton Friedman, Walter Williams,
Thomas Sowell give us fact based guidance.

Contrary to leftist slander, President Trump
points us to the positive potential of a free,
optimistic, honest, country; worthy of our
loyalty and love. And that’s the Truth!

Charlie

J3:16 said...

And many of us are hoping that death is swift.

Mr. Cohen said...

Eric Starkman
(Los Angeles-based writer and journalist) said:


“The mainstream media has abandoned all pretense of objectivity.

Whereas in the past journalists viewed themselves as unbiased chroniclers of the news, their focus today is on manufacturing it and dominating the ensuing conversations.

A journalist’s influence today isn’t determined by the quality or accuracy of their reporting, but rather the size of their Twitter following and the frequency of their television appearances.”

SOURCE:
Why Crown Heights Hate Crimes Aren’t Newsworthy
by Eric Starkman, 2019 February 17, in The Algemeiner:
www.algemeiner.com/2019/02/17/why-crown-heights-hate-crimes-arent-newsworthy/

Mr. Cohen said...

Matti Friedman
(former Associated Press news reporter) said:


“The big players in the news business practice groupthink...”
………………………………
“Many of the people deciding what you
will read and see from here [Israel] view
their role not as explanatory but as political.

Coverage is a weapon to be placed
at the disposal of the side they like.”

SOURCE: An Insider’s Guide
to the Most Important Story on Earth

by Matti Friedman, 2014/8/26, Tablet Magazine
www.tabletmag.com/jewish-news-and-politics/183033/israel-insider-guide

Mr. Cohen said...

Mark R. Levin (a lawyer and best-selling author) said:

Given the Progressive ideology and Democratic Party attachment of the modern media and journalists, their commitment to “community” journalism and social activism, and with the integration of opinion and news making objective truth increasingly difficult to discern, is the public actually receiving predominantly news or propaganda or pseudo-information?

SOURCE: Unfreedom of the Press
(chapter 5, page 117) by Mark R. Levin,
published by Threshold Editions, year 2019, NYC,
ISBN 9781476773094 * ISBN 1476773092

Dffghhuojopk said...

I disagree that the media is the left's strongest asset. I believe their stranglehold on the education system is their strongest asset because it produces hordes of abysmally-ignorant voters- voters dumb enough to keep supporting leftist insanity.

Mr. Cohen said...

Mark R. Levin (a lawyer and
author of the best-selling book
Unfreedom of the Press) said:


“The media’s Progressive ideology and Democratic
Party bias are in full bloom as evidenced by their
frenzied obsession with ‘getting’ President Trump...”

“...the constant media refrain is trying to convince
the American people of a demonstrably false narrative...”

SOURCE:
Deconstructing where American media has
gone wrong
by Deborah Fineblum, 2019/6/14
www.jns.org/deconstructing-where-american-media-has-gone-wrong/

===================================
Harry Maryles said:

“I am so tired of the extreme media bias.

And yes. It is extreme.

Never before has it come into such stark focus as it has under the Trump administration.

There is hardly any mention of the name Trump without either an overt or disguised negative comment.

It almost doesn’t matter who is reporting it. The attitude is the same. Anything the President says or does is bad.
No matter what it is.

Even his accomplishments are spun into the negative.”

SOURCE:
The Truth about Trump and Illegal Aliens
by Harry Maryles, 2019 July 12
http://haemtza.blogspot.com/2019/07/the-truth-about-trump-and-illegal-aliens.html

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