Breitbart Mentality

Number 7

I do, yes I do. I subscribe to Breitbart News. Why? I will tell you why. I spent my whole life dealing with the real world, full of messy facts and hard consequences. Breitbart is a breath of fresh air. It’s like stepping out of Mary Poppins and onto the set of a Marx Brothers film. A slavish support for Donald Trump and everything right wing often steers the course in bizarre directions. Take this recent item for example:

Nolte: Top 51 Fake News ‘Bombshells’ the Media Spread About RussiaGate

That was the headline, and you need to bear with me and read the rest of my post. Granted the aspect of Breitbart calling out “fake news” sets a new level—you really need to hear them out. You never know when you might find a diamond in a coal bin. Breitbart writer John Nolte lays out the headlined 51 fake news bombshells that are giving him the most heartburn. He concedes the mainstream media outlets have gotten it right so many times, but they should have gotten it right those other 51 times. Continuing:

You’re supposed to take care of your kids!

And the media are supposed to get stories correct.

But here is the media forced to brag on when they didn’t crash the plane, when they did take care of the kids, which tells you something is horribly, terribly, ridiculously wrong.

Nolte writes metaphorically. Taking care of the kids is what you are supposed to do all the time. Crashing the plane is what you are never supposed to do. However, he infers, the real scandal is the flood of fake news put out to, I presume, drown the presidency of Donald J. Trump. Some more:

While a list of what the media might have gotten correct is fairly easy to put together, no one will ever be able to grasp the tsunami of fake news Americans were buried under for over two years.

The list below of 51 might sound like a lot, but it is a drop in the ocean when you recall the thousands and thousands of hours CNN, MSNBC, Meet the Press, This Week, PBS NewsHour, State of the Union, Good Morning AmericaReliable Sources, and the Today Show devoted to anchors and pundits pushing the hoax that Trump colluded with Russia.

I will not hit on all of Nolte’s top 51, thinking the first three will be representative. Here is number 1.

New York magazine, McClatchy: Michael Cohen went to  Prague.

For the record, it is almost certain Michael Cohen has never been to Prague. From the referenced news item:

In April, Peter Stone and Greg Gordon reported for McClatchy that Robert Mueller had obtained evidence that Cohen did indeed visit Prague. Today the pair have a new report with much more detail. Cohen’s phone pinged off cell-phone towers in Prague during that period, according to four sources. Also during that period, an Eastern European intelligence agency electronically surveilled a conversation in which one Russian said that Cohen was in Prague, according to two more sources. The reporting is the opposite of thin. If the conclusion is wrong, it is a massive journalistic error.

It is possible, of course, that all these sources are wrong. It is also possible that Cohen did visit Prague, and either did not meet with Russia, or met to discuss innocuous topics, and then lied about it. But the more probable explanation by far is that Cohen did visit Prague and did meet with Russian agents.

From Wikipedia:

However, on April 13, 2018, the DC Bureau of McClatchy Newspapers reported that Special Counsel Robert Mueller has evidence that Cohen did travel to Prague during the late summer of 2016, with two sources having confirmed this secret trip. The evidence is said to show that Cohen entered the Czech Republic from Germany, and since both countries are in the European Union’s Schengen passport area, Cohen would not have needed to receive a passport stamp to enter Czech territory. The following day, Cohen again denied he has “ever been to Prague”. Cohen also said that he didn’t travel to the European Union in August 2016. McClatchy reported in December 2018 that a mobile phone traced to Cohen had “pinged” cellphone towers around Prague in late summer 2016. McClatchy also reported that during that time an eastern European intelligence agency had intercepted communications between Russians, one of whom mentioned that Cohen was in Prague. The Mueller Report did not conclude Cohen had been in Prague, citing his testimony to investigators.

Beyond all this, we have to wonder what all the fuss is about. McClatchy obtained unreliable information from multiple sources and reported it. The substance is Cohen did not need to go to Prague to do all the stuff he has been convicted of and also the stuff he did that was not criminal. He continued to negotiate with Russian interests on behalf of Donald Trump while Trump was running for the office of President of the United States. Further, he initially lied about it before ultimately coming clean and taking his lumps. His boss, the President of the United States, perpetrated the lie.

Number 2:

BuzzFeed: Trump directed Michael Cohen to lie, and Mueller has emails proving it.

The referenced news item is Breitbart, itself:

BuzzFeed, citing two unidentified law enforcement officials, alleged in a Thursday evening report that President Trump directed Cohen to lie to Congress and that he regularly briefed the president and his family on the Trump Tower project in Moscow. BuzzFeed claimed Cohen told Mueller that President Trump personally instructed him to lie about the timing of the project in order to obscure Trump’s involvement. No other news organization was able to confirm the report nearly 24 hours after it’s publication.

Again from Wikipedia:

According to a BuzzFeed report on January 17, 2019, President Donald Trump personally directed Cohen to lie to Congress about the Trump Tower Moscow project. However, a spokesman for the Special Counsel investigation later said the report was “not accurate”

Number 3:

The New York TimesPaul Manafort passed polling information to Kremlin.

Again the reference is to Breitbart:

Nolte: New York Times Forced to Correct Manafort Russia Collusion ‘Bombshell’

The far-left New York Times has been forced to issue a humiliating correction after falsely reporting Paul Manafort passed along polling information to a Kremlin-connected businessman.

Times “reporters” Maggie Haberman and Ken Vogel are dishonest enough on their own, but put these two leftists together, and you are almost certain to get a heapin’ helping of Very Fake News, which is exactly what happened Wednesday.

I find the foregoing difficult to reconcile with this from the Mueller Report

Separately, on August 2, 2016 , Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort met in New York City with his long-time business associate Konstantin Kilimnik, who the FBI assesses to have ties to Russian intelligence. Kilimnik requested the meeting to deliver in person a peace plan for Ukraine that Manafort acknowledged to the Special Counsel’s Office was a “backdoor” way for Russia to control part of eastern Ukraine; both men believed the plan would require candidate Trump ‘s assent to succeed (were he to be elected President). They also discussed the status of the Trump Campaign and Manafort’s strategy for winning Democratic votes in Midwestern states. Months before that meeting, Manafort had caused internal polling data to be shared with Kilimnik, and the sharing continued for some period of time after their August meeting.

Yes! That is curious, but I will leave it for readers to sort out. The conclusion Nolte wants us to draw is mainstream media outlets are responsible for “the tsunami of fake news Americans were buried under for over two years” and for “pushing the hoax that Trump colluded with Russia.”

We are left to wonder at the tsunami that buried us.

Finally, concerning that hoax the Trump campaign colluded with Russia.

Any attempt by the mainstream media to bury the American public beneath a tsunami of fake news would be completely unnecessary. We have people now working for the United States government already doing that. But thank you, Breitbart News.


One thought on “Breitbart Mentality

  1. Pingback: Breitbart Mentality | Skeptical Analysis

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