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Thursday, September 21, 2017

WJAR-Channel 10 exposed for right-wing disinformation

Image result for boycott sinclairCourtesy of Providence Journal 

The company that owns WJAR-TV is mandating the broadcast of multiple programs favorable to President Donald Trump on the state’s most-watched television station. 

Sinclair Broadcast Group, a rapidly growing media company that bought Channel 10 in 2014, produces “must-run” segments and distributes them to its local stations nationwide. They must air during daily news programming, Sinclair executives said. 

Three of the segments have rattled viewers and WJAR’s own news reporters, according to Fletcher Fischer, the business manager and financial secretary of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 1228, the union that represents broadcast workers there:

‒ The Terrorism Alert Desk, advertised as a daily news update about terrorist activity.

‒ News pieces from Epshteyn, Sinclair’s chief political analyst. 

‒ A clearly labeled opinion show featuring Mark Hyman, a former vice president of the company. 
These pieces are fed to Sinclair’s 174 stations in the United States every day. Sinclair’s insertion of the segments into news programming has been harshly critiqued by Rhode Islanders and national commentators.

One of the main problems is that "Terrorism Alert Desk" which plays daily, along with its ominous theme, even if there is nothing really to report. 

The Terrorism Alert Desk’s updates, even in the absence of any real terrorism-related events, is scary for some, said Moni Chea, a 32-year-old Providence woman who works in a nursing clinic. Chea’s 85-year-old grandmother fled conflict in Cambodia and now lives in Portland, Maine, where Sinclair owns a local station. 

“It’s very captivating. She hears the music and it sounds very important. I try to tell her it’s just an update about national security, but she worries,” said Chea. “She fled a war. For her, terrorism — that’s her biggest fear.”

I am sure many of you remember the Bush Administration terror alerts, which were liberally used to keep us on edge and to maintain support for their unnecessary wars.

The Bushies also experimented with their own media outlets (Besides the always reliable Fox News.) and this just feels like another version of the same old propaganda.

Of course the conservatives will argue that this is just to offset the mainstream media's liberal bias, but that is just Right Wing slang for "responsible journalism."

What is more insidious, as we have previously pointed out, is that this is being disguised as local coverage, and viewers are not made aware of their local station's change in agenda or that they may in fact be watching "fake news" served with a healthy side of Right Wing propaganda.

Trump's America is looking more and more like Hitler's Germany every day.