BOOK REVIEW: True Story of Fake News – How Mainstream Media Manipulates Millions
Rev. Steve Schlissel - January 10, 2018
The True Story of Fake News: How Mainstream Media Manipulates Millions, by Mark Dice, is a welcome contribution to the high-profile discussion which has been widely—and mistakenly—attributed to President Donald Trump as Provocateur-in-Chief. But just as the president was accused of starting a feud with NFL millionaire players who had first publicly maligned (and have continued to regularly disrespect) the nation which enriched them, so too has the media treated every instance of their getting called on the presidential carpet as an “unprovoked attack.” Those with eyes and ears, however, cheer the fact that finally, someone is telling the truth.
Mark Dice is a cheerer. He is also a seer and hearer. He is not at all fooled by the hypocritical posturing of an agenda-driven press as one-sided as Pravda, the old Soviet news agency. His book is welcome for chronicling how the Trump presidency has become the occasion for the mainstream media to remove the gloves. Dice recites instance after instance proving they’re no longer ashamed to let their bloody knuckles be seen. Their amazing arrogance has led them to believe they can retain some sort of claim to objectivity even while intensifying their attacks on a president they refuse to acknowledge as their own. Their predictable daily delivery of mountains of distortion, slander, imbalance…and lies…may, in the end, be seen as their pounding the nails to shut their own coffins.
Mr. Dice does not restrict himself to media matters concerning only the president, however. And he ranges into enlightening—though frightening—considerations of the liberal biases, rank censorship, and condescending indifference to truth found in the policies and practices of Facebook, Google (YouTube given separate treatment), Twitter and Wikipedia, along with the usual suspects: ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC and, in a deteriorated class of their own, CNN.
Because Americans have become so thoroughly acclimated to the reception of entire worldviews by media-injection, books like Mr. Dice’s are very important, especially in view of his diligent documentation: Nearly every item he mentions in his impressive lineup of media mangling and manipulation efforts, is anchored to specific citations with resource info.
Some of the media mischief he cites is so outrageous, it would have been a travesty had Mr. Dice failed to document his sources. For example (an example I still cannot get through my head):
Four young Black punks in Chicago did a live-broadcast over Facebook of their kidnapping and taunting and torturing of a mentally-handicapped young White man. They were eventually charged with numerous felonies (including hate crimes). Major media at first tried to subject the story to their greatest form of hostility: making believe it didn’t exist. i.e., ignoring it.
But that used to be its most intense form of hostility. Since social media has facilitated the immediate distribution and wide penetration of events—apart from mainstream media’s “help”— big media outlets now sometimes find themselves coming up from the rear. When a story has gone viral, it’s already “out there” and too late to ignore. The most MSM can then do is spin it. And in such circumstances, Dice shows they have reached deeper into their bag of filthy, lying tricks. This is how CBS News reported the horrifying Chicago story just mentioned (pp. 295-6):
“The viral video of a beating and knife attack in Chicago suggests the assault had racial overtones. CBS’s Dean Reynolds tells us the victim is described as a mentally-challenged teen. In the video he is choked and repeatedly called the n-word. His clothes are slashed, and he is terrorized with a knife. His alleged captors repeatedly reference Donald Trump. Police are holding four people in connection with the attack.”
This example—for which CBS never offered an acknowledgment or a mea culpa or an apology—is a keeper. Here they can be plainly seen carefully treading on one side of blatant lying in order to blatantly misrepresent. They strained to come up with wording that would completely reconstitute the event—clearly, CLEARLY conveying the impression that four Whites had tortured and knifed a handicapped Black—and they had done so, mind you, under the malignant influence of one Donald Trump, alleged White Supremacist-in-charge. They might have mentioned—had truth been anywhere on their radar—that the “n-word” was used as an intimidating taunt, and that their mention of the president was not in the form of a “Heil Trump” but rather in a repeated proclamation of “F**k Trump.”
This incredible example from Mark Dice’s book, is a standout, yes, but not lonely. It does, however, serve as proof and a reminder that not only is there no objectivity in mainstream media’s reporting, but sometimes there is no sign of ethics of any kind. These dogs deliberately and meticulously used words to reconfigure in its entirety the horror which they knew occurred. Rather than allow reporting of an event which challenged a cardinal tenet of their mythical narrative, they flat-out deceived, self-consciously and carefully. But, they cry, it’s Donald Trump who’s waging unprovoked war on the news media! No, it isn’t. It’s just a president who’s a little thin-skinned, and who is not so bound to form that he’s going to blithely overlook their flagrant, virtually treasonous assaults.
Which leads me to my criticism of the book. Because this topic is so timely and so important, it deserved better treatment than Mark Dice gave it. I’m not quibbling about the items listed or the side Dice represents. Instead, I’m lamenting that in what should have been a carefully written refutation of lies and deceit and cover-ups, we have a book which screams out from every page, “Why wasn’t this edited?!”
I didn’t get through a single chapter without stumbling over the wrong use of words, or the use of wrong words, or impossible syntax, or sentences that ran long and convoluted enough to follow decathloner Bruce Jenner all the way to Caitlyn.
Ironically, this ended up serving as a warning about the double-edged sword that is the Internet. It sets us free from slavish reliance on a couple of jaundiced news sources. But in addition to delivering a thousand and one other (jaundiced?) sources, it also, at the same time, does away with the necessity of being overseen. Every writer needs an editor. Mark Dice more than most. I’ll spare you the multitudinous array of error-types and particulars. I think you should read it. But you shouldn’t say I didn’t warn you. As a last word, let me urge all on the side of truth, the excellence of our cause does not mean we’ve less of a burden to maintain a high standard of style and form. We should be people who can despise the New York Times for what it’s become even while we adhere to 90% of their style manual.