Sunday, 20 September 2015

CNN Poli-tricks: How The Masters of Propaganda ‘Fixed’ The GOP Debate

Prior to Wednesday evening’s TV event, the people had spoken clearly through a number of major polls, and their top two run-away choices are clearly Donald J. Trump and Dr. Benjamin Carson. You wouldn’t know it after enduring three hours of CNN’s stage-managed production. This is perhaps the most damning indictment of the establishment politics in living memory, and potentially a major watershed moment in terms of American politics. Instead of using use real public opinion as a gauge, the media mafia, like in a Las Vegas boxing match, made the necessary moves behind the scenes in order to tilt the playing field in favor of the weaker candidates. This is nothing new, and they wouldn’t be alone. The only problem now is that the public are becoming wise as to how the media and the political establishment (in this case the GOP), work together in fixing the race.

CNN’s own debate protocol on the night stipulated that if another candidate’s name is mentioned in a contestant’s answer, then that other person is automatically given the right to rebuttal. In other words, if Tapper asks a question to Jeb Bush and Bush mentions the name ‘Rand Paul’ during his answer, then Rand Paul is summarily given time to reply. In this way CNN purports to be the ‘fair and balanced’ broker, but in reality the exercise is almost completely controlled by the moderator asking the question and the establishment candidates. Rule number one: don’t mention Trump. Using this clever formula, during one long stretch CNN, managed to shut-out Donald Trump for a full 40 minutes towards the third hour of the debate – just as viewer numbers began to gradually erode.

The other obvious point here is that it is simply ludicrous to claim that a debate is a legitimate reflection of the public interest when the broadcast network Svengalis allows nearly 15 candidates a place on the stage, with the majority of those 15 candidates polling somewhere between 1-2% nationally. This guarantees that the ‘debate’ will ultimately be a farce in terms of representing the public interest in this political race. Regardless of how poor their public appeal is, like a doctor doling out bad medicine, the establishment media is determined to force-feed their bloated field of mediocre political stooges and career glad-handers – down the throats of the American people.

Granted, this has been the GOP’s losing strategy since 2008 – to flood the primary field with as many candidates as possible, including completely unelectable and otherwise repugnant outdated party throwbacks like
Newt Gingrich - who was encouraged to run at the last-minute by the Republican establishment in 2012 in order to help dilute the field and eventually oust surging front-runner Ron Paul from the national spotlight. The media played the game, denying media coverage and redacting Paul’s winning polls and even his leading primary results, effectively erasing Ron Paul from American TV screens in 2008, and in 2012. The same could be said for GOP candidate Herman Cain in 2012, who after wiping the floor in interviews and debates, was ‘disappeared’ from much of the GOP media coverage in the run-up to the New Hampshire primaries. The same process is happening now, as the RNC, in partnership with networks like CNN and FOX, are trying to erase Donald Trump from America’s gaze. They will not give up until this mission is accomplished.

Another important element in fixing their staged production is ‘loading’ their studio audience. On Wednesday night, CNN in partnership with the Republican National Committee, chose a small venue that could only hold 500 persons so that they could more easily fix the audience so that it would include ZERO supporters of Donald Trump. Tickets to this event were strictly invite only and might have been distributed along the following lines:

Republican National Convention guest list – 350 tickets (70%)
Ronald Reagan Library guest list – 100 tickets (20%)
CNN guest list – 50 tickets (10%) CNN

Considering that only 48 hours before the debate, Donald Trump filled Mavericks Arena in Dallas, Texas with well over 10,000 supporters on just 72 hours notice, one might ask how no actual Trump supporters (aside from family members in the VIP enclosure) were present in the audience on Wednesday night. This topped by the fact that Trump is polling as high as 40% in places in a field of 15 candidates, this calculated move by CNN and the RNC is tantamount to fraud. This was obvious when the RNC’s hand-picked audience would applaud on cue at the end of Wisconsin governor Scott Walker’s rebuttals, as well as following any statements by Jeb Bush, Marco Rubio and Carly Fiorina. Judging from this ‘canned’ applause, one can easily see which candidates the RNC were keen to promote through this CNN mass-media production. At no time did any member of the audience cheer following a rounding statement by Donald Trump, even though he had his share of applause-worthy moments.

To compound the farce, Jeff Zucker also ordered CNN producers to run the debate over 3 hours in length, pushing its completion well past the television watershed mark past 11pm ET. Zucker knew that if Tapper and CNN had achieved its list of objectives in the first 2 hours, that many viewers would begin to peel away in droves after that. Despite Hugh Hewitt’s sweeping claim afterwards that CNN had “built and kept its audience over the 3 hours”, the reality is that viewers fell off after the second hour. To drag on the debate could only benefit those establishment candidates CNN was keen to promote in hours one and two

[Posted at the SpookyWeather blog, September 20th, 2015.]

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