web analytics

When right-wing hacks confess the damage that they do

Written By: - Date published: 9:11 am, March 26th, 2017 - 20 comments
Categories: Deep stuff, making shit up, spin, the praiseworthy and the pitiful - Tags: , , , ,

One thing I often wonder about right-wing demagogues and hacks (and bloggers) is whether or not it’s all an act. Are they broken enough to believe what they say, or they deliberately posturing (with a full understanding of the damage that they’re doing)?

Whatever, a couple of them in America have recanted recently. Here’s one:

Conservative radio host: ‘We’ve created this monster’ of fact-hating right-wing voters

In an interview with Business Insider’s Oliver Darcy, a conservative radio host lamented the fact that conservative media has conditioned its followers to distrust the mainstream media so much that they have become fact-free “monsters.”

In a tweet promoting an upcoming piece on rightwing media, Darcy posted an excerpt from an interview with conservative radio host Charlie Sykes who claims candidates like Donald Trump can say anything on the stump without fear of being fact-checked by the likes of Fox News or conservative websites.

“We’ve basically eliminated any of the referees, the gatekeepers. There’s nobody. Let’s say that Donald Trump basically makes whatever you want to say, whatever claim he wants to make. And everybody knows it’s a falsehood,” he explained. “The big question of my audience, it is impossible for me to say that. ‘By the way, you know it’s false.’ And they’ll say, ‘Why? I saw it on Allen B. West.’ Or they’ll say, ‘I saw it on a Facebook page.’ And I’ll say, ‘The New York Times did a fact check.’ And they’ll say, Oh, that’s The New York Times. That’s bullshit.’”

“We’ve created this monster,” he warned. “Look, I’m a conservative talk show host. All conservative talk show hosts have basically established their brand as being contrasted with the mainstream media. So we have spent 20 years demonizing the liberal mainstream media. And by the way, a lot has been justifiable. There is real bias. But, at a certain point you wake up and you realize you have destroyed the credibility of any credible outlet out there.”“And I feeling, to a certain extent, that we are reaping the whirlwind at that,”…

Here’s another one. Glenn Beck. Yes that Glenn Beck (interviewer in italics):

Glenn Beck Is Sorry About All That

Now we’re here in crazy town. What we need now is for reasonable people to sit down with each other and say: O.K., your guy [Obama] wasn’t the end of the world. My guy [Trump] wasn’t the end of the world. How can we talk to each other?

But this guy might actually be the end of the world. It’s why I didn’t vote for him. Because if it’s going to get bad, he could bring out the worst in us. I think he could be one of the most dangerous presidents to ever come into the Oval Office. We have to watch him carefully, but also focus on each other and make this work.

You’ve admitted that you were part of the problem that paved the way to Trump — you’ve expressed regret, for example, for calling President Obama a racist — but I see your role in all of this as a bit more than just “a guy who insulted the president.” I could excuse it, to some degree — I won’t — but I could excuse some of it by saying that I was trying to, in some ways, accomplish what Jon Stewart can accomplish: draw huge crowds, make points and then encourage you to do your own homework. I know I wouldn’t believe me if I heard myself apologizing, so I’m telling you now: Don’t take my word for it. Watch my actions. I don’t care what you think about me. All I care about is saying, Please, don’t make the mistake I made.

You’ve certainly been directly complicit in the mainstreaming of a conspiratorial way of thinking about our politics. I see the conservative media sphere, in general, as having created a hothouse atmosphere, where there’s this idea that everyone is out to get us. I don’t think that’s fair. The first time I ever really heard that kind of serious talk from anybody was about there being a vast right-wing conspiracy out to get us. We both play that game; we’ve done, on the right, the same thing that we accuse the left of doing. You have to know what’s true and what’s not, and quite honestly that’s where the media is supposed to come in and fill the gap. …


I mean – what – do you even?

The most constructive thing I can think of to say is that I reckon there’s a whole lot more who should follow their brave lead.

Bonus content: GLenn Beck interviewed on this by the incomparable Samantha Bee. Worth it for the sweaters alone…

20 comments on “When right-wing hacks confess the damage that they do ”

    • Malconz 1.1

      You have to suspect he’s about to be sued off the planet by the Pizza place owner.

    • Guerilla Surgeon 1.2

      Yes, but only under threat of lawsuit. Though how anyone could make sense of his raves enough to construct a decent lawsuit I just don’t know.

  1. One Two 2

    How many corporations own and control the major mainsteam outlets in the USA…

    Which POTUS enabled that the occur

    Hint – WJC

    • Sapani 2.1

      About half a dozen now. There were more than 4000 outlets about twenty years ago.

      What changed?

      Ask Clinton, the wise guy who got rid of Glass Steagall legislation.

      In the media area, Clinton very helpfully put through the Telecommunications Act 1996 that was “essentially bought and paid for by corporate media lobbies”.

      What a pity that his wife didn’t get in to deliver some really wonderful law reform for the greatest democracy in the world.

  2. Keith 3

    But at the same time right wing media like The Herald and Newstalk ZB and the utter right wing propoganda they spout has caused a turn off from our so called main stream media.

    When have either of those questioned the flimsy basis of our growth or even something as obvious and ridiculous as Nationals mid 21st century promises? They don’t, they just faithfully run their media releases!

  3. Adrian 4

    Maybe Beck and Joness ” road to Damascus ” moments are at the insistence of their corporate employers who have just realised that the ramifications of Trump et al are actually going to cost them a shitload of money.

  4. Skeptic 5

    I find it very interesting that US right-wing talk show hosts label the MSM as liberal left-wing. Why? Because for the last twenty or so years the majority of the MSM worldwide has been owned or controlled by Rupert Murdoch. As we all know now, Murdoch appointed editors who shared his world view, so he didn’t even have to set editorial standards that reflected his own world view – they did it for him. And what exactly was his world view? It certainly wasn’t liberal left-wing by any stretch of the imagination – in fact one would be very hard put to describe his stance as centrist. The kindest critique of Murdoch’s editorial stance was it was centre-right – but most would label his papers as reflecting a conservative – or hard right – viewpoint in just about every media outlet he owned or controlled. For every story that had a centre-left or left slant, he made sure there were at least four – usually more – stories that showed the opposite viewpoint. These facts certainly don’t sit well with the talk-show hosts confession about MSM as they view it. This only goes to show how close they are to extreme right. No wonder the Republican Party is in disarray. There are elements within it that are so far right they make Adolf Hitler look centrist. The myriad of Tory, conservative, neo-lib, neo-con, monetarist, Tea Party, factions combined with the oil lobbyists, coal lobbyists, anti-tort lobbyists, gun nut lobbyists etc make for the most dysfunctional political party ever. Yet this is the Party that thinks Trump is extreme. Now what does that really say about Trump? His own party that is so far right-wing that it makes Hitler look like a kindergarten teacher, thinks Trump is a step too far. What exactly does that make Trump, if not the most dangerous man in the world at the moment – and he has his finger on the nuclear trigger. Would the US military actually launch if he said so? I have my doubts!! I tend to think they’d treat him like they treated Nixon when he had his mental breakdown and get any orders cross-checked with someone sane.

    • greywarshark 5.1

      Even bricks in a wall are separated by mortar. Paragraphs please.

    • Wensleydale 5.2

      Yeah, I don’t think America is so far gone that they’d launch nukes on the whim of an unhinged narcissist. At least… I hope not.

      • One Two 5.2.1

        The ‘war machine’ will do whatever it wants, whenever and wherever the war machine and its controllers want to impose itself…

        POTUS is irrelevant, as is congress…for those who are not aware…

  5. reason 6

    Appropriate you mentioned Nixon ….

    When he teamed up with Kissenger they were like ‘blood’ brothers

    But it’s not really a right versus left thing when it comes to death squads and murder from the yanks ….


  6. greywarshark 7

    Thanks for that link to Bee and Beck. Sounds like a good entertainment duo doesn’t it. And it was very good tv and even better I think that it was a good precedent for many more individuals getting clued-up and glued-up to a sort of agreed togetherness. They have shown us that facing up to unattractive facts can be funny, and yet still tell us things that we need to think about. Who’d have thunk it.

  7. greywarshark 8

    Right wing hacks finding that they are actually hacking at the fabric of human society? It is well to read about what Rod Oram said was a dangerous direction of that kind last year in his column in the Sunday Star Times. (I’ll leave the quote in normal type so it is easier to read, and put my comment in italics. I have copied it from his Facebook page as it is barred from casual public viewing by Fairfax)

    Techno-futures must have ethical foundations – Rod Oram’s Sunday Star-Times column for November 20th, 2016

    Speakers and audience alike exuded boundless optimism at the Singularity University New Zealand Summit in Christchurch this week. Infectious enthusiasm about the power of technology to solve all the world’s problems coursed through the three-day event.
    The message was humankind’s technological prowess is growing at an exponential rate. Even better, we’re combining breakthroughs to deliver limitless benefits to people.

    These technologies are deeply disrupting all our existing knowledge and practices. We are transforming computing, energy, medicine, food, farming, transport, education, work, space colonisation and almost any other area of life we can imagine, even democracy itself.
    Ray Kurzweil, a distinguished American inventor and futurist, devised this concept of exponential change and its impact in his 2005 book The Singularity is Near. Very rapidly a community of fervent technologists locked on to the ideas and established Singularity University to spread them.

    – Amy Fletcher, a political scientist at the University of Canterbury, described what 21st century public policy would have to look like here if we want to become a future-thinking, rapidly adapting society.
    It would have to be a continuous, participatory process to bring people and government together on policy and politics. One example she gave is the way the Swedes are focusing on deep sustainability, the future of work, and global co-operation.
    These and many other summit presentations will be available soon on http://www.singularityunz.com

    For all the abundant optimism and ambition at the summit, however, one element was almost entirely missing: what does it mean to be human?
    Viewed simplistically, technologies such as artificial intelligence, virtual reality and gene editing only enhance some of our human capabilities. But in doing so, they will transform life as we know it.
    That’s good if there’s genuine benefit for all. But the whole history of human progress, let alone technology, is gains for many but little or none for others; and with dire, unintended consequences all round….

    We’re already seeing in the US, UK and elsewhere how imperfect progress is causing facts to vanish, realities to distort, co-operation to evaporate, common sense to disappear, politics to polarise and society to fracture.

    • Jan Rivers 8.1

      +1 excellent thinking on this greywarshark and thanks for the tip about Amy Fletcher. Frequent and meaningful public engagement needs to be part of future policy and yet how far we are from that now.

      I’m involved in planning some lectures at St Andrews on the Terrace as part of the St Andrews Trust for the Study of Religion and Society – a series of seminars to look at Human Flourishing but the technology issue is not woven in yet and I can see it should be. “Here” is what is confirmed so far. All the events are koha except the weekend and we’ll have a registration option for that available soon.

  8. I really have so little sympathy for the supporters of the idiotdump who now realise they were sucked in and even less for the mindless rwnj media who promoted and sanctioned the bigotedrump – shame on you and if you are really sorry – do SOMETHING about it – not just sorry words but actual ACTIONS.

    • garibaldi 9.1

      I have no sympathy for the supporters of Trump or Clinton . America is fucked.
      The question is are they going to kill us all for their stupid Empire?

  9. North 10

    Sense your frustration Marty. The thing I’m finding hard is that we have a genuine bloody fruitcake in the Oval Office. The craziness of that fact made more bitter by frequent colonic misfortune and the call and shrill of narcissism which requires/bullies that there’s perfume in the air.

    It’s like a loudly hailed yet bogus level of reality. And Sean and Kellyanne step in somewhat aggressively to conduct this ‘protect a child’ vaudeville. Themselves to become caracitures. It’s extraordinary to watch !

    Wow ! What will history say ?

  10. NZJester 11

    At the moment one of the rightwing fact hatters is currently the most powerful man in the US.
    He tweeted that Obama had spied on him because a rightwing conspiracy nut told the Breitbart (Socalled) News that Obama had done so and he considers Breitbart a reliable source.
    Apparently, there are teenagers running news website full of news they just made up or copied and modified from elsewhere using lots of keywords in the stories they know people in the US will search for. They get money from the visits to their news stories via adverts plastered all over their pages and some are making good money from them even though most of the news stories they post haven’t any basis in fact. The rightwingers though are picking up these stories and running with them as if they are true.

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Major redevelopment of Wainuiomata High School underway
    Work begins today at Wainuiomata High School to ensure buildings and teaching spaces are fit for purpose, Education Minister Chris Hipkins says. The Minister joined principal Janette Melrose and board chair Lynda Koia to kick off demolition for the project, which is worth close to $40 million, as the site ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 hour ago
  • New expert group appointed to advise Government on Oranga Tamariki
    A skilled and experienced group of people have been named as the newly established Oranga Tamariki Ministerial Advisory Board by Children’s Minister Kelvin Davis today. The Board will provide independent advice and assurance to the Minister for Children across three key areas of Oranga Tamariki: relationships with families, whānau, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 hours ago
  • COVID-19 vaccine slated for possible approval next week
    The green light for New Zealand’s first COVID-19 vaccine could be granted in just over a week, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said today. “We’re making swift progress towards vaccinating New Zealanders against the virus, but we’re also absolutely committed to ensuring the vaccines are safe and effective,” Jacinda Ardern said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    18 hours ago
  • New ACC Board members announced.
    The Minister for ACC is pleased to announce the appointment of three new members to join the Board of ACC on 1 February 2021. “All three bring diverse skills and experience to provide strong governance oversight to lead the direction of ACC” said Hon Carmel Sepuloni. Bella Takiari-Brame from Hamilton ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    21 hours ago
  • Economic boost for Southland marae
    The Government is investing $9 million to upgrade a significant community facility in Invercargill, creating economic stimulus and jobs, Infrastructure Minister Grant Robertson and Te Tai Tonga MP Rino Tirikatene have announced.  The grant for Waihōpai Rūnaka Inc to make improvements to Murihiku Marae comes from the $3 billion set ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Celebrating the Entry Into Force of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons
    [Opening comments, welcome and thank you to Auckland University etc] It is a great pleasure to be here this afternoon to celebrate such an historic occasion - the entry into force of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. This is a moment many feared would never come, but ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Supporting disabled people to stay connected
    The Government is providing $3 million in one-off seed funding to help disabled people around New Zealand stay connected and access support in their communities, Minister for Disability Issues, Carmel Sepuloni announced today. The funding will allow disability service providers to develop digital and community-based solutions over the next two ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Voluntary saliva testing offered to quarantine workers from Monday
    Border workers in quarantine facilities will be offered voluntary daily COVID-19 saliva tests in addition to their regular weekly testing, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. This additional option will be rolled out at the Jet Park Quarantine facility in Auckland starting on Monday 25 January, and then to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Next steps in firearms buy-back
    The next steps in the Government’s ambitious firearms reform programme to include a three-month buy-back have been announced by Police Minister Poto Williams today.  “The last buy-back and amnesty was unprecedented for New Zealand and was successful in collecting 60,297 firearms, modifying a further 5,630 firearms, and collecting 299,837 prohibited ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Jobs for Nature projects target iconic ecosystems
    Upscaling work already underway to restore two iconic ecosystems will deliver jobs and a lasting legacy, Conservation Minister Kiri Allan says.  “The Jobs for Nature programme provides $1.25 billion over four years to offer employment opportunities for people whose livelihoods have been impacted by the COVID-19 recession. “Two new projects ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • New Public Housing Plan announced
    The Government has released its Public Housing Plan 2021-2024 which outlines the intention of where 8,000 additional public and transitional housing places announced in Budget 2020, will go. “The Government is committed to continuing its public house build programme at pace and scale. The extra 8,000 homes – 6000 public ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Prime Minister congratulates President Joe Biden on his inauguration
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has congratulated President Joe Biden on his inauguration as the 46th President of the United States of America. “I look forward to building a close relationship with President Biden and working with him on issues that matter to both our countries,” Jacinda Ardern said. “New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Jobs for Nature funding will create training and employment opportunities
    A major investment to tackle wilding pines in Mt Richmond will create jobs and help protect the area’s unique ecosystems, Biosecurity Minister Damien O’Connor says. The Mt Richmond Forest Park has unique ecosystems developed on mineral-rich geology, including taonga plant species found nowhere else in the country. “These special plant ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Pre-departure testing extended to all passengers to New Zealand
    To further protect New Zealand from COVID-19, the Government is extending pre-departure testing to all passengers to New Zealand except from Australia, Antarctica and most Pacific Islands, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “The change will come into force for all flights arriving in New Zealand after 11:59pm (NZT) on Monday ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Bay Cadets learn skills to protect environment
    Bay Conservation Cadets launched with first intake Supported with $3.5 million grant Part of $1.245b Jobs for Nature programme to accelerate recover from Covid Cadets will learn skills to protect and enhance environment Environment Minister David Parker today welcomed the first intake of cadets at the launch of the Bay ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Cook Islanders to resume travel to New Zealand
    The Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern and the Prime Minister of the Cook Islands Mark Brown have announced passengers from the Cook Islands can resume quarantine-free travel into New Zealand from 21 January, enabling access to essential services such as health. “Following confirmation of the Cook Islands’ COVID ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Supporting communities and landowners to grow employment opportunities
    Jobs for Nature funding is being made available to conservation groups and landowners to employ staff and contractors in a move aimed at boosting local biodiversity-focused projects, Conservation Minister Kiritapu Allan has announced. It is estimated some 400-plus jobs will be created with employment opportunities in ecology, restoration, trapping, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Border exception for some returning international tertiary students
    The Government has approved an exception class for 1000 international tertiary students, degree level and above, who began their study in New Zealand but were caught offshore when border restrictions began. The exception will allow students to return to New Zealand in stages from April 2021. “Our top priority continues ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Tiwai deal gives time for managed transition
    Today’s deal between Meridian and Rio Tinto for the Tiwai smelter to remain open another four years provides time for a managed transition for Southland. “The deal provides welcome certainty to the Southland community by protecting jobs and incomes as the region plans for the future. The Government is committed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • New member for APEC Business Advisory Council
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has appointed Anna Curzon to the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC). The leader of each APEC economy appoints three private sector representatives to ABAC. ABAC provides advice to leaders annually on business priorities. “ABAC helps ensure that APEC’s work programme is informed by business community perspectives ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Govt’s careful economic management recognised
    The Government’s prudent fiscal management and strong policy programme in the face of the COVID-19 global pandemic have been acknowledged by the credit rating agency Fitch. Fitch has today affirmed New Zealand’s local currency rating at AA+ with a stable outlook and foreign currency rating at AA with a positive ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Additional actions to keep COVID-19 out of NZ
    The Government is putting in place a suite of additional actions to protect New Zealand from COVID-19, including new emerging variants, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “Given the high rates of infection in many countries and evidence of the global spread of more transmissible variants, it’s clear that ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • 19 projects will clean up and protect waterways
    $36 million of Government funding alongside councils and others for 19 projects Investment will clean up and protect waterways and create local jobs Boots on the ground expected in Q2 of 2021 Funding part of the Jobs for Nature policy package A package of 19 projects will help clean up ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago
  • New Zealand Government acknowledges 175th anniversary of Battle of Ruapekapeka
    The commemoration of the 175th anniversary of the Battle of Ruapekapeka represents an opportunity for all New Zealanders to reflect on the role these conflicts have had in creating our modern nation, says Associate Minister for Arts, Culture and Heritage Kiri Allan. “The Battle at Te Ruapekapeka Pā, which took ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 weeks ago