‘World Nut Daily’ Set Stage for Cult 45

Right-wing propaganda outlets help conservatives deny reality

My brother worries about my mental health because I spend so much time looking at right-wing media. Viewing right-wing media is like staring at the sun. It can damage your organs. So, I do it through filters such as Right Wing Watch, Media Matters and Mediaite that aggregate this kind of information. But sometimes, you click on a link and get exposed to the full horror of right-wing propaganda.

That’s what I did a few days ago when I clicked on a link that took me to the World Net Daily website. World Net Daily (WND) is notorious for conspiracy-mongering. According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, WND’s real goal is “serving up a daily dose of conspiracy theories, apocalyptic alerts and anti-gay rhetoric.”

The birtherism business

During the Obama years, WND made a cottage industry out of birtherism. World Net Daily must have been sad when President Barack Obama left office because he was one of their main drivers of traffic. Conservatives loved thinly-veiled racist stories about Obama not being born in America. And WND gave them a steady diet of junk-food journalism and clickbait.

I believe Trump was the greatest president in the history of the United States. That’s right! His achievements in four years exceeded that of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln and Ronald Reagan. — Joseph Farah, founder of World Net Daily

Who cared if it was true? WND was partially responsible for creating what HBO host Bill Maher called the “zombie lie.” This is a lie that refuses to die no matter how many facts you throw at it. If many Republicans still refuse to believe Obama was born in America, even though he produced multiple birth records, WND played a role in it.

That was four years ago, and the conservative disinformation sites have exploded. WND was a harbinger of what was to come. And some of the copycats are even worse. One America News (OAN) doesn’t even bother with the truth and why they are caught up in the Dominion Voting Systems lawsuit.

However, FOX News is just as bad. FOX News neo-Nazi Tucker Carlson recently tried to claim that the Capitol insurrectionists weren’t violent. Last week, he repeated the racist “Great Replacement” theory to his 5 million nightly viewers. What will it take for FOX News to stop him? Another incel gunning down people and citing Carlson as a motivation?

Troll or true believer?

World Net Daily is still as awful as it was during the birther days. It’s as allergic to the truth as The National Enquirer.

Here’s a recent comment about ex-President Donald Trump.

“I was one of the million or so cheerleaders for Donald J. Trump in Washington, D.C., Jan. 5–7 — for what has become known as ‘the insurrection.’ Then it was over,” said Joseph Farah, founder of the site that some left-wing commentators called “World Nut Daily.” “That was not easy to accept. I believe Trump was the greatest president in the history of the United States. That’s right! His achievements in four years exceeded that of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln and Ronald Reagan.”

He also goes on to confirm this nonsense by saying: “While Trump was the greatest president ever, Biden has been the worst — with a sample size of only three months.”

Trump the greatest president? Greater than Franklin Delanor Roosevelt, who led the country out of the Depression through World War II and served four terms? Better than Abraham Lincoln, who held the country together during a bloody civil war. That’s laughable and not objective.

Also, Trump’s mishandling of the coronavirus, which killed more than half a million Americans, could land him in the Hague for crimes against humanity. Plus, Trump faces a dozen other state charges for possible crimes such as election tampering, fraud, bribery, tax evasion, sexual assault, etc. Joe Biden has a long way to catch up in the worst president race.

The right-wing reality denial machine

Farah’s claims are ridiculous. But they aren’t any more out there than the MAGA fans who wave pictures of Trump as a muscle-bound Rambo? Or even worse, the five-star Trump cultists, who still worship him, even after he rips them off.

The New York Times recently revealed the Trump campaign overbilled some supporters to the tune of more than $120 million. But that didn’t quench their enthusiasm. Ron Wilson, a Trump supporter, was overcharged for about $2,300 because of this scam, but he still loves Trump.

“I’m 100 percent loyal to Donald Trump,” said Wilson.

But the QAnon delusion and adherents such as Reps. Lauren Boebert and Marjorie Taylor Greene show that too many Americans will believe whatever is put in front of them.

If you want to know why almost half of Republicans still believe the Capitol attack was conducted by antifa, point the finger at Farah. He helped set the stage for this kind of reality-denying BS!

Some Republicans urge party to reject conspiracy theories in wake of deadly assault on U.S. Capitol (YouTube)

Manny Otiko writes about race, politics and sports. He has been published in Salon and LA Weekly. Follow him on Twitter @mannyotiko.

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