I just read a rather droll article, describing how a network from the other side of the political aisle chooses to attack the target on their side. It struck me that the plain and simple techniques they are using deserve a wee bit of negative recognition.
Here is the laydown, from Slate, an unabashedly left-wing source, bashing Fox News. This is how Slate describes what Fox News is doing. As you read this, ask yourself where might you have heard this before?
1) to generate material that its hosts can discuss from emotional rather than cerebral standpoints;
2) to camouflage right-wing hypocrisies by spotlighting liberal ones; and
3) to shore up its viewers’ faith in and reliance on Fox News by attacking the credibility of opposing pundits
The first point indicates emotions versus facts. This is THE predominant tactic used by ALL news networks, but this accusation is used to undermine the credibility of the target network.
The second point is what is known as “Whataboutisms” or, in Argumentative Techniques, a redirect.
The third point is that if one cannot argue the facts, undermine the opposition.
All three of these techniques come straight out of the Russian Troll Handbook.
I have seen the exact same accusations made by conservatives as liberals, now.
It’s a “he said, she said” news world without sources, references, basis, or fact. Finger waving, jaw jacking, hands on hips, weave pulling, gutter trash flinging trash at the other side and then back again.
Want to see this extrapolated to the point of absurdity? Read Trump’s Seven Techniques to Control the Media by Robert Reich. Here we have the generalization of how Hitler controlled the press in Nazi Germany converted into a modern day conspiracy theory.
This is not news, this is blather. This is not an exposè of tactics, these are smear techniques. This is not journalism. This is what journalism has become in its rabid desire to ‘win’ partisan games. We all end up losing all faith in our media.