Saturday, April 7, 2018

The news is handling its favorite Trump scandal wrong

You might expect that I'm going to say something social justicey or otherwise insightful into the state of the nation, how we view people in the adult film industry, politics, or the problems of the modern mainstream media.  The thing is, my standards have been ground down to the point that that's not even where I'm at.  It's more of:

Your job: UR DOIN IT RONG

To expand on that, the words on the TV screen were:

TRUMP DENIES KNOWLEDGE OF PORN STAR PAYOFF

No.  First off, "Porn Star Payoff" sounds like a reality TV show where adult film stars compete for prize money, thus giving the whole thing a feeling of, "Well I can't keep up with every show these days either."

Second, "Trump + Porn Star" isn't news.  It isn't news adjacent.  It and news don't even share the same fucking zip code.  The news isn't who Trump was or was not boinking.  It never has been.  To her credit, Stormy Daniels seems to be completely aware of this, which means she would do a better job of running a news network than the people who actually run the news networks.

But, hypothetical news people say, we need to report on what's happening.

Yes.  Yes, you do.  Let me show you how:

PRESIDENT SAYS HE DIDN'T KNOW ABOUT HUSH MONEY

Or

PRESIDENT DENIES INVOLVEMENT IN COVER UP

Or

TRUMP ADMITS INCOMPETENCE:
DIDN'T NOTICE MASSIVE (ALLEGED) BRIBE

Or any fucking thing that points out that the scandal has nothing whatsoever to do with sex and everything to do with the fact that the President of the United States is implicated in, but denies having any knowledge of, a cover up carried out with the explicit intent of affecting the results of the election that made him the fucking President.

You want to report the story then that's what you've got to focus on.  I'm not even talking about what matters in a substantive sense.  I think it's pretty clear that the entire mainstream news media has ceded any claim it ever had to giving a damn about what is important.

I'm talking about the fact that even if you decide, as they have, that the key question is "Will this sell?" rather than "Does this matter?" then they're still fucking it up.

"Trump + Porn Star" is going to produce a lot of shrugs and, "Well, what did you expect?"

"President + Hush Money" is something that people might actually give a shit about.  "President + Cover Up" lets you feel like reporters are meeting sources in darkened parking garages and following the money towards conclusions that, once reached, could shake the very foundations of our democracy.

And, if you really insist on somehow bringing porn into a scandal that has nothing to do with porn, I will remind you that the source in that story, Mr. "Follow the Money" himself, was called "Deep Throat".

The media has been handed news-making gold, and they're completely ignoring it in favor of puerile desires to repeatedly say "Porn Star" and a seeming inability to understand that Donald Trump is the President of the United States.  This is no longer Donald the Buffoon, this is the President Trump, and that's the only reason to care whether he was involved with the hush money and cover up.  The standards have changed.

There is a story, and it will be covered, and at this point my standards have been crushed to the point that I don't expect anyone in the news industry to investigate, or fact check, or provide context, or do any kind of journalism or news reporting, but at the very least get the God damned headlines right.

The President of the United States stands accused of being involved in the a cover up that included both hush money and threats to a baby girl.  This accusation is credible enough that the President has taken it upon himself to directly (and repeatedly) address it personally.

That's the story.  Depending on which way things go they either get to report on the implosion and downfall of a baby threatening monster or how the lies that rocked the White House were eventually exposed as lies.  Either way, it can be ratings gold if they just let it be.  It's practically been handed to them on a silver platter, already written out and even choreographed, and they're still managing to fuck it up somehow.

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