Michael Tracey
Nov 28, 2016 · 3 min read

I can’t help but notice that the new Washington Post-certified “master list” of “fake news” outlets does not include any of the media organs overseen by David Brock, one of the leading propagandists of the modern era. Why is this? Virtually everything that David Brock does would qualify as “fake news” under any objective criteria. He runs a bunch of websites that may seem to the naked eye to be legitimate “news” sources, but in reality are just Democratic Party / Hillary agitprop conveyor belts. This is well known and accepted, even by Hillary’s inner-circle, many of whom view Brock with suspicion.

Bountiful “fake news” can be found at the propaganda outlet Media Matters, the premier Brock-connected entity (he founded it). To take just one example, Eric Boehlert, the main public face of Media Matters, relentlessly denied over the course of the 2016 presidential campaign that Hillary was under criminal investigation. He denounced this notion as “fictitious,” and launched a relentless “targeted harassment” campaign against the New York Times for reporting otherwise. It turned out that Boehlert was 100% wrong and the NYT was 100% right — Hillary really was under active felony criminal investigation, from July 10, 2015 to July 5, 2016 and then again from October 28, 2016 to November 6, 2016. Those facts are no longer in dispute. Hence, wasn’t Boehlert promoting “fake news”? He was putting false, distorted information out onto the internet, thereby actively misinforming readers. If that doesn’t qualify as “fake news” — what would? Please explain why the term “fake news” would not apply to Boehlert’s conduct.

Many readers are also likely familiar with the parody figure Peter Daou, who runs the Brock-connected organization “ShareBlue.” Day after day over the course of this campaign, Daou relentlessly unleashed pro-Clinton spin into cyberspace, often peddling bogus rumors and distortions. I don’t have the emotional wherewithal to trawl through his entire archive; those who followed the Democratic primary race closely via Twitter will be well aware of his laughably brazen mendacity.

Question: Why isn’t Peter Daou being targeted as an especially damaging purveyor of “fake news”? Could it be that rooting out “fake news” as such is not what this current fad is about, but rather imposing an ideological agenda? Hmm, the latter would be my hunch.

Bear in mind that the Brock apparatus is also responsible for paying online trolls to propagandize social media on Hillary’s behalf. This led to a very strange dynamic whereby those who took the brunt of pro-Clinton trolling onslaughts (as I did) could never be quite sure whether they were dealing with a genuine interlocutor, or someone who was trolling on Brock’s dime. Ironically, this Brock-enforced tactic was the essence of “gaslighting” — it made people question the reality of what was going on before them, and bred paranoia. Brock knowingly sought to inflict stress, confusion, and misinformation upon people who dared criticize the Clintons on Twitter, reddit, or wherever else. That was his explicit tactic. Where does this fall on the “fake news” spectrum? They were promoting a ton of fakery for the purpose of pushing a partisan political agenda.

I still haven’t seen any coherent definition of “fake news,” or a feasible explanation of why Brock’s “content” wouldn’t fall under that rubric. In the meantime, I’m going to assume that the push to purge so-called “fake news” is little more than a ruse to discredit and smear media seen to deviate excessively from establishmentarian consensus. Because Brock is squarely within the mainstream US liberalism consensus, notwithstanding his disgraceful tactics, he doesn’t have to worry about being deemed a “fake news” peddler, even though that’s exactly what he is. He’s scum.

mtracey

Michael Tracey’s Personal Stylings

Michael Tracey

Written by

Roving journalist

mtracey

mtracey

Michael Tracey’s Personal Stylings

Welcome to a place where words matter. On Medium, smart voices and original ideas take center stage - with no ads in sight. Watch
Follow all the topics you care about, and we’ll deliver the best stories for you to your homepage and inbox. Explore
Get unlimited access to the best stories on Medium — and support writers while you’re at it. Just $5/month. Upgrade