A Tale of Two Headlines: The (Not So) Subtle Propaganda of the Mainstream Media

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Conservative titan Ted Cruz gave a rousing stump speech to a packed house at a campaign rally in Perry, Georgia yesterday.  Students of classical oratory would have appreciated (in between the shouting, sign-waving, and standing ovations) the structure of the speech as further evidence (if any were needed) of Cruz’s erudition.  Far from being the typical disjointed mishmash of platitudes and strung-together bumper sticker slogans, it was a sterling example of a formal address – a closing argument, if you will, for his candidacy:  an introduction, three main points, each with supporting evidence, and a call to action.

During the call to action, Cruz exhorted the citizens in attendance to speak with their votes, to say to themselves:  ‘This is my future, this is my kids, this is my grandkids, this is my country, damn it!” He challenged us:  “Stand up and fight for it together!”

Because Tuesday is a big day here in the South, the national media was following candidates around Georgia yesterday.  Sometime during the afternoon or evening, CNN posted a story on its website about Cruz’s Saturday activities.  The headline read:

Ted Cruz:  ‘This is my country, damn it’

Around midnight last night, a friend and fellow Cruz supporter used the CNN site’s sharing feature to post the story to her Facebook page, which is where I first saw it.  The graphic and link which appeared on my friend’s Facebook post is the one on the left above.  Notice the (not so) subtle propaganda?  A reader scrolling through a Facebook news feed without clicking through to read the entire news article would immediately receive the intended message….a message which fits in so well with the mainstream media’s narrative:  Cruz is a creepy, scary megalomaniac who thinks the country belongs to him.

When I saw the Facebook post this morning, I did click through to the article.  And lo, the headline has been altered.  It now reads:

Cruz implores voters to say, ‘This is my country, damn it’

which is, of course, accurate reporting.  Whether somebody called CNN on it, or somebody more fair-minded at CNN noticed the headline and fixed it is really immaterial.  It was inexcusable in the first place.  And how many, many people saw that original headline last night and received  a gut-level negative impression of the most consistent conservative in the race during this very important weekend before the SEC Primary?

“But if thought corrupts language, language can also corrupt thought.”  – George Orwell, 1984

Stay vigilant, patriots.

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Kimberly_Schwartz
Southern girl and proud of it. Wife, mother, prosecuting attorney, political conservative, and home-based business owner; living and working in Central Georgia, USA. Dabbler in web design, photography, and mixed media. Still prefers reading and writing over math. Totally obsessed rubber stamper and scrapbooker. Shares several acres of easily-defensible farmland with husband, daughter, four dogs, and way too many cats.
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Southern girl and proud of it. Wife, mother, prosecuting attorney, political conservative, and home-based business owner; living and working in Central Georgia, USA. Dabbler in web design, photography, and mixed media. Still prefers reading and writing over math. Totally obsessed rubber stamper and scrapbooker. Shares several acres of easily-defensible farmland with husband, daughter, four dogs, and way too many cats.

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LadyImpactOhio
February 28, 2016 3:23 pm

After 8 yrs the MSM sees their cash cows disappearing and are panicking. Sensational and misleading headlines about all the candidates. They went after Trump for RTing a questionable tweet. Anyone on twitter knows a RT isn’t an endorsement. They are just passing the tweet around.

It’s hard to keep up with all these misleads. Thanks for pointing it out.

StephC
Admin
February 29, 2016 1:02 pm

They should leave Cruz alone now. He has done been torpedoed by a Beck endorsement. Or maybe they’re trying to take him out of the running for VP while they’re at it?

Lady Penguin
Admin
February 29, 2016 1:35 pm

Pathetic to see the GOP-Establishment, the malignant media, and the DC UniParty in dismay about Donald Trump. We could have had a man like Cruz, but they’ve done everything they could to destroy him…from his first days in the Senate. In his own way he ripped away the veil covering the Republicans in Congress – 1) during his filibuster to defund Obamacare, and 2) when he outright called McConnell a liar, and McConnell is – along with almost every other GOP elected Senator and Congressman in Congress. The Malignant Media has long been our enemy, but it’s been more than… Read more »