Real Fake News
What were Brian Ross and ABC News thinking?
On Friday, Brian Ross, who has been an investigative correspondent for ABC News for 23 years, reported that during the 2016 presidential campaign, Donald Trump directed Michael Flynn to make contact with Russian officials before the election. That statement was incorrect – something you just don’t say unless you have great evidence to back it up.
Ross did not have great evidence.
By Friday night, Ross was on ABC World News Tonight reading a “clarification.” This time he said Trump did not ask Flynn to contact Russia until after he’d been elected president.
It wasn’t really a “clarification.” It was more a case of completely changing your report.
On Saturday, ABC News apologized, saying they “deeply regret” the “serious error” and suspended Ross for four weeks without pay. A 23-year veteran reporter surely knows better than this. Except he’s been involved in similar “errors” before. After the 2012 movie theater shooting in Aurora, Colorado, he falsely reported that the shooter may have been a Tea Party leader.
Naturally, President Trump gloated on Twitter about Ross’ suspension.
Mainstream media can’t stand President Trump. Despite that fact, the President is wrong – mainstream media is not all fake news. But when will the media learn? If you want the president to stop yapping about fake news and how the media’s out to get him, then stop shooting yourself in the foot with sloppy reporting like this!
This fake news feud between President Trump and the media is so exhausting. Americans are sick of it. “Fake news” has become a cliché, a joke that’s now part of our cultural lexicon.
In these insane times, when we’re flooded with media content, when it’s difficult to know who and what to believe, shouldn’t we be doing everything in our power, especially if you’re one of the nation’s major media organizations, to try to put aside politics for two minutes and refocus on integrity? Truth matters more than politics.
It may not sell as well as Trump’s MAGA caps this Christmas, but we need to Make Journalism Trustworthy Again.
Being stupid isn’t a crime, lying to the FBI is.
It finally happened on Friday. Impeachment hopefuls and Resistance warriors like Keith Olbermann have been waiting with baited breath for months, salivating over what secrets Mike Flynn might reveal. We finally found out on Friday. The highly anticipated ruling against General Flynn was… wait for it… lying to the FBI. The Muller hammer everyone was waiting for, on the surface, seemed a bit underwhelming. The real question now is this: What did General Flynn promise Muller to receive such a small slap on the wrist?
I have to tell you, after millions of dollars and thousands of man hours invested, if all we get out of this investigation is a tax evading lobbyist and a lying General, this might end up being the biggest let down in the history of big let downs. Manafort and Flynn could very well be Act 1 of a very complicated 3 Act play. Who or what comes next is anyone’s guess, but the hyperbolic media reports, finger pointing and impeachment calls aren’t helping. The President tweeting his defense to every single allegation isn’t helping.
Can we get back on track here? This investigation better start producing more fruit soon, AND WE ALL should be supporting it. Russian interference is an undisputed fact. The entire intelligence community is in agreement on this. Russian intelligence services launched a campaign to sway public opinion via social media, appear to be involved in the Fusion GPS dossier, and the meeting at Trump Tower. More Trump administration officials could have been involved, but so could the DNC, the Clinton Campaign and a laundry list of other Americans.
This is a serious issue, and if we don’t fix this now imagine what might happen during the midterms AND the next presidential election. If this was just the opening salvo of a much larger Russian influence operation we’re in serious trouble. The media needs to stop with it’s overreaction. Those calling for impeachment everytime something comes out need to calm down. Those that have already made up their minds on this, either guilty or not guilty, will ultimately find themselves missing the actual threat. So to Muller, the FBI, the DoJ, and all the other open investigations on this… do your jobs. Be thorough, but do it quickly. There’s too much at stake here.
While You Were Sleeping
While you were sleeping in the early morning hours on Saturday, the Senate passed the final version of its tax bill.
The Senate voted 51 to 49 with Senator Bob Corker as the lone Republican voting against it.
The big takeaway from the bill is that the plan will reduce the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 20 percent.
That sounds great…if it can stay that way.
Trump is seemingly already walking away from that 20 percent.
After the bill passed, he told reporters, “It could be 22 when it all comes out, but it could also be 20. We’ll see what ultimately comes out.”
The difference between those 2 percentage points? $200 billion.
The passage of the Senate tax bill is a step in the right direction for the most part, but the House and Senate still have to hash out the differences in their plans, so who knows what will and won’t be included in the final version right now.
Cutting the corporate tax rate is a good idea, but the hasty way Congress dealt with passing the Senate bill stinks of Obama era politics.
Passing bills “undercover of darkness” at 2am on Saturday only hours after the plan details were released is shady at best.
It just sounds like Republicans are desperately trying to comply with Trump’s demand to sign anything of substance by the end of the year. That’s not a good reason to pass a bill. I’m hoping the bill will be good for the country, but one thing is for sure— unless we do something about it, Congress will continue to act as if we are all asleep.