Conservatives have repurposed the term “fake news” to continue their effort to undermine any opposition to their own chosen narratives. A column by Jeremy W. Peters in today’s N.Y. Times (Wielding Claims of ‘Fake News,’ Conservatives Take Aim at Mainstream Media) addresses this now typical play from the conservative’s playbook.
One quote tells you everything you need to know:
“Rush Limbaugh has diagnosed a more fundamental problem. ‘The fake news is the everyday news’ in the mainstream media, he said on his radio show recently. ‘They just make it up.’”
Instead of fake news being politically directed disinformation, as has been the case up to this point, that is fake news is political propaganda, the conservatives are morphing this term into another cudgel to undermine the news media, so that there can be no credible opposition to conservative lies fictions narratives.
Not all conservatives have bought in on this effort as indicated by this quote from the article:
“‘Over the years, we’ve effectively brainwashed the core of our audience to distrust anything that they disagree with. And now it’s gone too far,’ said John Ziegler, a conservative radio host, who has been critical of what he sees as excessive partisanship by pundits. ‘Because the gatekeepers have lost all credibility in the minds of consumers, I don’t see how you reverse it.’”
But, in the past, conservatives have gotten into line quickly with any promising disinformation campaign and since so much has already been invested in this effort, including an entire news network (Faux Fox News), I expect there to be unity shortly … and another pillar of democracy continues to crumble under the onslaught of the conservatives at the behest of their paymasters.