Jen Psaki: The White House Briefing Room Can’t ‘Become a Forum for Propaganda’

President Biden’s Press Secretary, Jen Psaki, was interviewed Sunday on CNN’s Reliable Sources by Brian Stelter. It proved to be another opportunity for her to demonstrate her intelligence, grace, and commitment to candidly informing the American people about the President’s thinking and his agenda for the country.

Fox News, Jen Psaki

Not surprisingly, the right-wing mediasphere launched into their knee-jerk condemnation of both Psaki and Stelter. They either didn’t understand what they were talking about or deliberately distorted it to create a false and negative impression. Probably the latter if their past behavior is any guide.

Much of the wingnuttery was obsessed with Stelter’s first question wherein he asked “What does the press get wrong when covering Biden’s agenda?” That was construed as a “softball” question, despite the fact that a media reporter asking a subject to critique the media is hardly playing softball. Stelter also grilled Psaki on why Biden doesn’t do more press conferences. But the rightist whiners must have tuned that out.

The conservative chorus of critics was fixated exclusively on finding fault with the interview. Fox News published an analysis on their website that featured only hard-core rightist reactions to the segment. They complained that Stelter didn’t ask Psaki about manufactured, right-wing “controversies” about Dr. Fauci or the alleged border crisis. That’s because this wasn’t a newsmaking interview. It was a discussion on a media-focused program about how the White House press team interacts with the media.

Aside from being too complicated an interview for conservative flacks to handle, it went pretty well. One of the most instructive moments was when Psaki addressed how she was portrayed in the media, and what she regards as her role.

Stelter: There’s a version on the liberal blogs, something that goes like this: Psaki smacks down, Psaki shuts down a questioner. It’s this narrative we’re seeing people celebrating for doing it. And yet that kind of reminds me of cable news and the way that cable news engages. I’m not sure it’s actually good for the country, even though it might be entertaining.
Psaki: Well look Brian, I think one, I’m not putting out those assessments. What I will tell you though is that I also have a responsibility not to allow the briefing room to become a forum for propaganda or a forum for pushing forward falsehoods or inaccurate information. […] I have a responsibility to the public to make sure they’re getting accurate information. and the premise of the questions that are propaganda pushing are not giving them inaccurate information.

Psaki clearly takes the job more seriously than Trump’s former press secretary (and current Fox News host), Kayleigh McEnany, who seemed to be more interested in scoring fashion shoots. And Psaki’s remarks on Sunday were consistent with those expressed by the White House shortly after Biden’s inauguration

“White House officials promise a sea change from how the Trump White House interacted with the press. Biden’s team plans to lay out clear criteria for qualifying for a so-called ‘hard pass’ to access the grounds in consultation with the WHCA, officials told POLITICO. If current passholders in the media continue to meet the criteria determined together with the correspondents’ association, they will continue to have hard passes. […] But Biden’s aides also promised not to allow outlets to use the briefings to spread baseless conspiracies. […]

“Organizations or individuals who traffic in conspiracy theories, propaganda and lies to spread disinformation will not be tolerated, and we’ll work with the WHCA to decide how to handle those instances moving forward.”

If the White House were to strictly impose those standards, Fox News wouldn’t be granted a press pass at all. Of Course, that’s not likely to happen. But at least they recognize the importance of downplaying propaganda and focusing on the informational needs of the American public. And they aren’t maligning the press in Stalinist terms as “the enemy of the people.” That’s a profound improvement over the hostility and childishness of the Trump years.

NOTE: Twitter recently suspended the News Corpse account after 11 years without giving a reason. So if anyone wants to tweet articles from my website, please feel free to do so often and repeatedly. Also, Be sure to visit and follow News Corpse on Instagram. Thanks for your support.

How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

Cancel Culture: Fox News Nixes Ad With Capitol Police Attacked By Trump Insurrectionists

Fox News has manufactured an entirely contrived and hypocritical theme surrounding what they call “Cancel Culture.” In reality it’s just an excuse for the network and the Republicans they represent to whine about criticism they receive, while they engage in the very same criticism of those they oppose.

Donald Trump, Fox News, QAnon

On Sunday a progressive organization revealed that an ad they booked on Fox News was rejected. The MeidasTouch principals reported that they were not given any reason for the rejection of the nearly $200,000.00 ad buy. However the content of the ad makes it pretty clear that the flagrantly partisan players at Fox News were deliberately censoring the ad because it reflected poorly on the Republican Clown Show and and its ringmaster, Donald Trump. Here is the ad that Fox found so offensive:

This ad is a heart wrenching condemnation of the January 6th riots on Capitol Hill by the Trump Insurrection Brigades. It contains the personal testimony of Capital Police officers before Congress and the press. Their remarks expose the still open wounds suffered by the heroes who protected America’s seat of government when it was under attack by rage-fueled seditionists, including…

“Our worst nightmare has really come true. An attack on American democracy right here in the nation’s capitol.”

“I experienced the most brutal, savage, hand-to-hand combat of my entire life.”

“I received chemical burns to my face that still have not healed to this very day.”

“I just remember people swinging metal poles at us.”

“It’s been very difficult seeing elected officials and other individuals whitewashing the events of that day.”

Generally, when advertisements are rejected it is due to some part of it being either demonstrably untrue or potentially offensive. Neither of those justifications fit this rejection by Fox News. All of the commentary and the video footage from the riot is verifiably true and well-documented. There is no graphic depiction of violence that could be construed as too harsh for viewing. So that leaves the only excuse for Fox’s rejection to be pure political discrimination. Ben Meiselas of the MeidasTouch responded to the snub saying that…

“We couldn’t have fathomed in our wildest imaginations that even a Fox News would reject an ad that simply condemns the insurrection, and condemns people who support the insurrection,” said Ben Meiselas, one of the co-founders of MeidasTouch, the liberal Political Action Committee that created the 60-second ad. “What Fox has really become is a fascist echo chamber gatekeeper for their base.”

By turning down this honest depiction of events on January 6th, Fox News is proving that their support for law enforcement is an exploitative facade. Their segments on how “Blue Lives Matter,” and their frequent booking of former law enforcement officers is all for show. And their feigned complaints about conservatives being “canceled” stinks of hypocrisy when they won’t even take a couple hundred thousand dollars to air a perfectly honest ad. Which may be for the best, because why should any progressive enterprise be funding the bullshit factory of Fox News?

The stench of hypocrisy also extends to Fox’s whining about Trump being suspended on Facebook. There is simply no way to rationalize their indignation at Facebook when they refuse to accept an honest, paid for advertisement.

Fox has made their position clear: They couldn’t care less about the police or truthful reporting. They showed that previously when they supported the GOP refusal to vote for a bipartisan commission to investigate the January 6th insurrection. They are too afraid of the truth coming out. But perhaps they are even more afraid of offending Dear Leader Trump.

NOTE: Twitter recently suspended the News Corpse account after 11 years without giving a reason. So if anyone wants to tweet articles from my website, please feel free to do so often and repeatedly. Also, Be sure to visit and follow News Corpse on Instagram. Thanks for your support.

How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.