Rearranging Chairs on the Titanic: How the Media Blew the Story of Trump v Bannon
Donald Trump hates all media that criticize or disagree with him. This is so very dangerous, for it is not the duty of the media to support our leaders. Rather, it is their obligation to report on what our leaders are doing. Based on that, we can decide whether we like it or not, and vote them in or out of office.
Having said that, the media can be annoying. Sometimes – probably more than not – reporters focus on the entertainment value of a “story,” rather than what is really happening and what the story is telling us. In these circumstances, content takes a back seat to an unfolding drama to which the media wants us to tune in, rather than fully appreciate.
It was so vivid this morning. I was listening to MSNBC, whose moderator and panelists were panting about the rift between Steve Bannon and Donald Trump, about which Republicans would side with whom, about Bannon’s actual power, and about how Trump fights back when attacked. No one, and I mean no one, talked about what Bannon — Trump’s former chief strategist – revealed: that it was likely that Trump himself met with the Russians that day in Trump Tower; the meeting with the Russians was treasonous; and his belief that Trump’s son, Don Jr., as well as Jared Kushner, are going to be ensnared in some sort of criminal proceeding. These statements by Bannon, who was in the White House and a confidant of the President, are astounding; they have momentous significance! I mean, while many of us have suspected these things, the ultimate insider is saying they are true!
And yet, here was MSNBC, focused on the relationship between the two men rather than the content or significance of what Steve Bannon actually said. This was bad, unhelpful journalism. A missed opportunity, really. We have a corrupt administration giving comfort to the enemy. That should have been the story, not whether and how much two guys are mad at each other.