"Enemy of the people" in light of recent events

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  1. profile image0
    PrettyPantherposted 5 years ago

    David Lapan

    "Over 30+ years as a U.S. Marine, I defended our country against its true enemies. In 20+ years as a USMC, Pentagon and DHS spokesman, I dealt w/ the news media nearly every day. I know quite a bit about the press and know this -- they are NOT the enemy of the American people," David Lapan wrote on Twitter.

    Donald J. Trump

    There is great anger in our Country caused in part by inaccurate, and even fraudulent, reporting of the news. The Fake News Media, the true Enemy of the People, must stop the open & obvious hostility & report the news accurately & fairly. That will do much to put out the flame...

    Lapan served as press secretary at DHS from February 2017 until October 2017, when he left to join a Washington-based think tank.

    He was responding directly to one of Trump's tweets from earlier Monday in which the president revived the "enemy of the people" tag and claimed the press is responsible for the "great anger" in the country in the wake of a spate of attempted bombings and a mass shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue.

    While the president frequently derides the media as "fake news" or the "enemy of the people," Monday's barbs came less than a week after a man sent an explosive device to CNN's New York City offices.


    While the president has urged unity in the wake of last week's violence, he has simultaneously continued his attacks on the press and his critics, suggesting they are to blame for political hostilities and stoking chants of "CNN sucks" and "lock her up" at his campaign rallies.

    Trump told reporters before departing for a rally last week that he felt he had been restrained in his rhetoric.

    https://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing … re-not-the

    Sarah Sanders defended Trump’s assertion that the media is the “enemy of the people” even as many have hoped he’ll tone down his language.

    After a week that included shootings at a Pittsburgh synagogue and a Kentucky grocery store and multiple pipe bombs being sent to President Trump’s critics, the White House is continuing to insist that any division in America is the media’s fault.

    https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics … -enemy-cnn

    What do you think of the President of the United States continuing to refer to the media as "the enemy of the people" ?

    Is it helpful? Is it harmful? Is it accurate?

    1. hard sun profile image80
      hard sunposted 5 years agoin reply to this

      Did you ever hear Obama call Fox news the enemy of the people when it was spreading lies about him? Why? Because he understood the gravity of the position and respected our nation as an entirety. Trump only respects those who voted for him and those who agree with him on everything. He is the most un-American thing to ever happen to America. Now, let the tantrums follow. I've said what I wanted to say.

    2. Bored Student profile image70
      Bored Studentposted 5 years agoin reply to this

      When Trump says "enemy of the people", he means "enemy of my base", which is a big difference. All he does by attacking the media is fire up his base, while the rest of us wonder what the press has ever done to us to indicate that they are our "enemies". By firing up his base, all the fringe white nationalists come out and start causing problems. It might not be Trump's intention to fire up white nationalists, but it is, at worst, harmful and, at best, divisive.

      1. profile image0
        promisemposted 5 years agoin reply to this

        Excellent point. Not only enemy of my base, but "enemy of me".

        1. Live to Learn profile image59
          Live to Learnposted 5 years agoin reply to this

          It is an excellent point which can be made about the powers who oppose him. So, since it comes from both sides why focus solely on one? Why not demand indivisive language all the way around? The answer is obvious....to those willing to look.

          1. profile image0
            promisemposted 5 years agoin reply to this

            Point well taken about human perceptions in general. But I felt comfortable making that statement based on a long history of comments made by Trump about himself.

            I believe the problems with his ego are obvious as well to those willing to look.

            1. Live to Learn profile image59
              Live to Learnposted 5 years agoin reply to this

              I agree. But, if one is not willing to look across the entire spectrum one misses clues as to why it started and why it persists. All parties must be unified in a commitment toward changing the dialogue. Why should one side continually bend to the other's complaining about a problem they both participate in? One side should stop and allow the other to continue on, unfettered?

              1. profile image0
                promisemposted 5 years agoin reply to this

                Right, one side should not go on unfettered. Reasonable people on both sides should work toward common solutions.

                That won't stop reasonable people with beliefs and biases from criticizing the other side. It's the my side is all good, yours is all bad kind of thinking that is making the situation worse, including here on HP.

                Personally, I'm highly critical of Trump (obviously) and some GOP policies (cutting taxes while increasing spending) but in favor of some of the more responsible Republican politicians.

                I would vote Republican in the next election if the right one came along and Dems put forth a weak candidate.

  2. profile image0
    PrettyPantherposted 5 years ago

    I'm interested in hearing from someone who 1) agree that the media is "the enemy of the people" and 2) think it is helpful for the POTUS to continue to call them that.

    For me, this is such an egregious act on the part of the President that it alone is enough to disqualify him from a second term. Obviously, there are people who are okay with this behavior. I'd like to hear why they agree with the President on this assessment and why they are okay with him continuing to label the media as the enemy, even after recent events.

    Given that it is a favorite phrase of authoritarian dictators,, I'm curious how his supporters justify its use by an American president.

    1. Sychophantastic profile image88
      Sychophantasticposted 5 years agoin reply to this

      Much of the media is the enemy of the people because they aren't reporting the truth and are inciting people to behave immorally and violently.

      For instance, they aren't reporting on how well the economy is doing, how many jobs the President has created, how the caravan coming up from Honduras is paid for by George Soros, how many of the people crossing the border and rapists and murderers and committing acts of violence and how many services they are using. They aren't reporting on how these so-called pipe bombs were false flag operations and how it's probably that Obama and Hillary Clinton sent the bombs to themselves to drum up support in the upcoming elections. They report positively on groups like Black Lives Matter when those groups are violent groups hell-bent on creating socialism. All Lives Matter!

      Put this all together and you have a press that is printing false information in an effort to convince people to change our country by voting based on false information. This is treason.

      1. Bored Student profile image70
        Bored Studentposted 5 years agoin reply to this

        There is a wide range of media outlets, which includes cable news, radio news, advertisements, Facebook, Twitter, magazines, newspapers, tabloids, and more. Some media outlets will be left-leaning, some will be right-leaning, and some will do everything in their power to remain neutral. Most likely, Trump means to attack left-wing cable news and maybe also The New York Times or The Washington Post. I doubt that any of these mainstream news outlets are actively trying to commit treason against America by influencing elections with fabricated information. A journalist's job is to report, while news pundits and newspaper editors will skew the language in order to represent a particular side of the debate. People see this liberal skew and call it "fake news", which is an over-exaggeration.

        To be sure, The Washington Post, for example, has a liberal slant, but they are not reporting fabricated information:
        There is a big difference between skewed language and fabricated facts. An example of a liberal skew is when The Washington Post publishes an article about how experts believe that the booming economy may not last forever (https://www.washingtonpost.com/business … f52717e293). An example of fake news is if, in theory, The Washington Post were to publish and article that pretends that the the bull market never existed in the first place. Your claim that the news does not report the bull market unsubstantiated. They do report that the economy is doing well, but they present the facts in a way that you may not like.
        A liberal skew is when the Washington Post published an article that was skeptical of the fact that job growth under Trump was sustainable, while also suggesting that growth under Obama was also substantial (https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/pol … 13a6c3d74a). Fake news would be if we lived in a world where The Washington Post decided to publish an article that says jobs have gone down since Trump's election. Again, your claim that much of the media is not reporting how many jobs Trump has created is untrue. Everyone has reported it, but it is just reported slightly differently.
        A liberal skew is when The Washington Post paints the theory about how George Soros funded the caravan as a conspiracy theory because the FBI never actually confirmed the theory to be true (https://www.washingtonpost.com/national … e355cada45). Fake news would be if the Washington Post falsely said the FBI had actually confirmed Soros's involvement in funding the caravan.
        I can keep going. I can also do this with CNN and The New York Times. However, I think you get the point. The left-wing media does report the economy, the caravan, and more. They just offer a perspective with which you disagree. You are allowed to disagree, but the ability to disagree with something does not make it fake.

        Additionally, all the newspapers have op-eds, which offer "unpopular opinions". These articles are skewed to support a viewpoint that the liberal editors do not necessarily like. Some of the op-eds are purposefully ridiculous and are published in order to cement the belief in viewers that conservatives are absurd. Other op-eds are actually thoughtful and can get people to accept that they may be wrong about some of their preconceived notions. No matter what type of op-ed you are reading, the existence of op-eds proves that anyone exposed to left-wing newspapers are forced to acknowledge that there is another way to skew the facts. Similarly, cable news networks will have expert panels that include both liberal and conservative commentators, indicating to viewers that there is an alternative way to interpret the facts.

        Right-wing news sources will do the same thing. They will have a conservative slant, but op-eds and expert panels are used to show everyone that there is another side. Despite the right-wing slant of these news outlets, they are not actively trying to influence voters with "fake" facts. They are presenting facts in a certain way and hoping voters respond in a certain way. Liberal and conservative media both do the exact same thing. The only difference is that the liberal media seems more prominent and prevalent. Fox news, the one right-wing network, may be the most watched cable news network, but there are definitely more cable news networks that cater to the left. The same goes for newspapers, which are even more left-leaning than many cable news networks. The only really popular conservative newspaper is the Wall Street Journal, which is the likely most popular newspaper in the United States. However, by all counts, it is more moderate than it is right-wing these days.

        However, conservative journalists, editors, and news anchors still exist in places such as Fox, WSJ, The Blaze, Breitbart, The Daily Caller, and others. These outlets report and interpret facts in ways ways that you probably like. According to Trump, Fox and the other conservative outlets (with the possible exception of Breitbart) probably are not "an enemy of the people", even though they are still part of "the media".

        At the end of the day, the headlines are all the same, but the wording is going to be different, depending on how you choose to get your news. Trump chooses which parts of the media he attacks based on which members of the press are his enemies. However, even if CNN is an "enemy" of Donald Trump, they are not necessarily a treasonous "enemy of the people". They just report stories in a way that does not match Trump's brand. I am not going to deny that the media plays a role in elections, but the plenty of people get news from conservative platforms and these people may be swayed to vote in favor of Donald Trump. Are conservative platforms guilty of influencing elections? Is this type of influence utilizing news that should be considered "fake" just because I disagree with it? Trump certainly would not conservative news is "fake", which begs the question of who determines which type of news is "fake"? If all news is equally "fake", then what do you think is the best way to obtain information? If, as Trump believes, democrat news is more "fake" than republican news, then why is one type of news (ie CNN) more "fake" than another type of news (ie Fox)?

        1. profile image0
          promisemposted 5 years agoin reply to this

          Very thorough analysis. My answers to your questions:

          - Yes
          - Not if it's fake
          - Rational people who understand how news works
          - From news sources that use standards of professional conduct
          - It is not, although some sources are more biased than others

          1. Bored Student profile image70
            Bored Studentposted 5 years agoin reply to this

            How can we determine which people are rational and understand how news works? How do we know that their information is not just more manipulation? I'm also curious about the news sources that have professional conduct rules that meet your standards. You may have gleaned that I am a big fan of The Washington Post, but I cannot pretend that, by reading The Washington Post a lot, I am getting a constant stream of biased news. I try to throw in some Fox News headlines and Wall Street Journal to balance it out a little bit. I even watch some Ben Shapiro on the Daily Caller. However, I have been trying to find a more neutral source of news so that my information does not come in an "us vs. them" format, where I know which "side" I will almost always favor. I just have to figured out how to determine which of these news sources are going to meet good standards and I am wondering if you have some suggestions.

            I am also assuming you have given this issue a certain degree of rational thought. I wonder how someone would answer my questions if they truly believed that the liberal press was the "enemy of the people" for spouting "fake news" stories, while still believing that conservative platforms do not have the same problems.

            1. profile image0
              promisemposted 5 years agoin reply to this

              Common tactics in the more emotional debates on here and elsewhere use evasion, exaggeration, distortions, false equivalencies, etc. They are pretty good clues in telling you who is rational and who is not and also who is relying heavily on rhetoric just for the sake of winning a debate.

              We know the information of fake news distributors is manipulative by checking their sources. A blog with an anonymous owner is a surefire example of propaganda and manipulation.

              News sources fall into certain types based on who owns them, how they get their information and how they report it.

              Newspapers have the highest standard of professional conduct because they have to follow certain rules for balance and objectivity. They require fact checking and use editors to challenge how an article is written.

              Network news has the next highest standards followed by cable news. Some pure news websites have high standards and some don't. You can detect their standards by how they play certain stories, how consistently they seem to take one side or another, etc.

              Think of the media environment as a bell curve of professionalism. On the far left, you have low standards for media outlets with a left-wing bias. On the far right, you have low standards for right-wing bias. In the middle, you have outlets with the highest standards.

      2. profile image0
        promisemposted 5 years agoin reply to this

        Yes, all media people are treasonous. Why aren't they in jail?

  3. Live to Learn profile image59
    Live to Learnposted 5 years ago

    I don't consider the media the enemy of the people. Trump should back off at this juncture.

    1. Sychophantastic profile image88
      Sychophantasticposted 5 years agoin reply to this

      If you lie and try to undermine the American way of life, try to get people to commit crimes, try to get them to vote a certain way, try to get people to allow illegal immigrants into our country to murder our citizens, shouldn't we do something about that? Aren't you an enemy of the American people if you advocate for those things?

      1. profile image0
        Ed Fisherposted 5 years agoin reply to this

        Say nothing about inciting street activists , projecting anti- Trump feelings to impressionable youth ,  outright LYING  instead of reporting , Media outlets are 'crayola' coloring EVERY program about Trump as negative.

      2. Live to Learn profile image59
        Live to Learnposted 5 years agoin reply to this

        The sky is not falling. We all have to make sacrifices for the good of the country so let's agree the sky is not falling.

        Trump needs to set the tone of a kinder and gentler dialogue.

        1. profile image0
          promisemposted 5 years agoin reply to this

          I agree with your entire post. I wish more people would say the same.

  4. profile image0
    Ed Fisherposted 5 years ago

    What exactly is "the good of the country "  in a news media so full of hate , bias and B.S. and manipulative journalism ?

  5. profile image0
    Ed Fisherposted 5 years ago

    There now !, .........Your being good little soldiers of a majority leftist bias news media .  March onwards , salute !

    1. Bored Student profile image70
      Bored Studentposted 5 years agoin reply to this

      I asked a few questions at the end there and I wanted legitimate answers.

  6. profile image0
    Ed Fisherposted 5 years ago

    Apparently dems still don't get it ," The Enemy of the People " means if the importance of free speech in media is that it must be fair , balanced , ACCURATE , ethical and honest and not all CNN 's Costa solely against one man , the president of the United States .

    It IS then our enemy .

    March on little soldiers , CNN is calling .

    1. Sychophantastic profile image88
      Sychophantasticposted 5 years agoin reply to this

      I completely agree! This is a war for truth and the American Way. If a few lying journalists get caught in the crossfire, then so be it.

  7. PhoenixV profile image65
    PhoenixVposted 5 years ago

    I believe it was Pat Caddell that universalized the phrase: Enemy of the American People, in recent history. Mr. Caddell has impeccable credentials in these regards.

    If memory serves, he was saying this about the so-called press when they were whitewashing Benghazi from Meet the Resistance NBC With Chuck Todd to Inside Sedition with Deborah Norville.

    1. Sychophantastic profile image88
      Sychophantasticposted 5 years agoin reply to this

      So true! Democrats want to complain about Trump and call for impeachment, yet they completely tossed Benghazi to the side like it was nothing! Can't believe what hypocrites they are.

      This is the one place where I criticize President Trump. Why has he not pursued criminal prosecution against Hillary Clinton and President Obama? Why are they not in jail?

      1. PhoenixV profile image65
        PhoenixVposted 5 years agoin reply to this

        The point is or was, that the phrase was brought to the forefront by Pat Caddell a few years ago.

        This is not a cnn vs fox thing. Imo. This is a ABC, NBC, CBS, NPR, Google, Youtube, Twitter and FOX vs Reality thing.

        It is naive imo to see it as: Well, just a lil spin wont hurt...its facts or facts with a lil slant..

        Its 2018. Algorithms and advertising. This guy is great and does no wrong and here is a visual vs this guy is hitler and here is photo..etc 24/7/365. A big ship is guided by a small rudder. The rudder is gaming your mind. And it has billions of dollars and infinite media time to make that happen. Do you think you are craving kfc at 1230 am after they are closed or did you see chicken on tv?

        Good guys and bad guys ? Your idea or the influence?

  8. profile image0
    PrettyPantherposted 5 years ago

    Well, this is certainly enlightening, in multiple ways.


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