The smart way to keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectum of acceptable opinion, but allow very lively debate within that spectrum.
— Noam Chomsky
Recently, I saw a YouTube ad for a right-wing newspaper called The Epoch Times which claimed, and I’m paraphrasing, that they are the only news organization to question the idea that COVID-19 came from bats.
Really? Because on 4/15/2020, Fox News, one of the most establishment networks on this planet, said the following:
There is increasing confidence that the COVID-19 outbreak likely originated in a Wuhan laboratory, though not as a bioweapon but as part of China’s attempt to demonstrate that its efforts to identify and combat viruses are equal to or greater than the capabilities of the United States, multiple sources who have been briefed on the details of early actions by China’s government and seen relevant materials tell Fox News.
The next day, CNN, a network that dedicates itself to never questioning power, said the following:
US intelligence and national security officials say the United States government is looking into the possibility that the novel coronavirus spread from a Chinese laboratory rather than a market, according to multiple sources familiar with the matter who caution it is premature to draw any conclusions.
It certainly seems like anyone who has been following Senator Tom Cotton (R-AK) would have also heard the idea. As when he was told people who worked in that lab denied it while being interviewed by Fox News, Cotton responded by calling the man a partisan (unlike him, a Republican Senator who votes with Trump 88% of the time). Before the investigation, Cotton also told Fox News that the claim that it’s a bioweapon “should not be ruled out.”
You also near certainty have not heard of Rep. Peter Kind (R-NY) who said the idea that it was a bioweapon made by the Chinese is “worthy of investigation.”
So that’s two twenty four hour news networks, one Senator, and one Representative. But The Epoch Times wants to claim that it’s the only ones questioning the narrative — really?
However, even if The Epoch Times claim was true (it isn’t) I could really only consider that impressive if the mainstream media was somehow pro-China. (And if they weren’t already infamous for having a strong anti-China bias, now that I think about it.) A search on the website Mediaite, an news website with a focus on what popular pundits are saying, for “China” shows the following headlines:
- “We Don’t Blame Trump, We Blame China”: Lindsey Graham Claims Beijing Responsible For “16,000 American Deaths” — 4/9/2020
- Trump Campaign Asks For 10,000 Donations To Help President “Hold China Accountable” — 4/14/2020
- WATCH: Lou Dobbs Suggests Coronavirus Could Be A Biological Weapon, Proposes U.S. Take China To War — 4/16/2020
- Trump Insists U.S. Does Not Have Highest Coronavirus Death Toll: “The Most In The World Has To Be China” — 4/17/2020
- Lindsay Graham: “We Ought To Sanction The Hell Out Of China” — 4/18/2020
- Trump Slams Global Supply Chain At Coronavirus Briefing: “I Ran Strongly Against China” — 4/19/2020
- Steve Bannon Compares China To Nazi Regime On Fox, Calls For People To “Overthrow” Chinese Communist Party — 4/25/2020
- Another Republican Attorney General Threatens Lawsuit Against China, Admits It Would Be “Tough” To Win — 4/26/2020
Hey, remember when NBC got in trouble for tweeting out this:
U.S. reports 1,264 coronavirus deaths in over 24 hours. Meanwhile in China, where the pandemic broke out, not a single new coronavirus death was reported.
Notice how they didn’t say “has occurred,” but instead used the phrase “was reported.” When talking about a government most of the US already doesn’t trust, using a phrase like “was reported,” basically translates to “lied while saying that.”
Still, this wasn’t enough for the anti-China right-wing media. Hence why we got Tweets like this:
NBC bought it. Hook, line and sinker. Well done China. Well done. — Former White House Press Sectary and Fox News Contributor Ari Fleischer
The Chinese Communist Party, which relies heavily on information control to maintain power, has reported a miraculous zero new coronavirus deaths & NBC is running with that. Brilliant. — Natalie Johnson, Aid to Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY)
You may be missing something, @NBCNews. — The Daily Wire creator Ben Shapiro
Actually China told me they had a bunch of people straight up come back to life. So even better than zero! — Columnist Caleb Howe
Find someone who loves you like the American media loves the CCP. — Greg Price, Social Media Director for The Daily Caller
Again, someone really needs to tell The Daily Epoch about this.
Why did this bother me so much? To be honest, I’m not entirely sure myself. I know it’s not because I have some love towards the Communist Party of China — hell, not only am I a believer in capitalism, but I’m also not a believer in censoring television channels I own to appease communist China, which already puts me at odds with Rupert Murdoch.
I think what bothers me the most is the pure double think coming from the right-wing media on this topic.
Here’s one example: On 4/24/2020, Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee was guest hosting an episode of Hannity. During an interview with anti-China activist Gordon Change, the following conversation occurred:
HUCKABEE : Gordon, I’m not trying to throw something crazy out there, but is there at least the possibility that the Chinese have developed some type of biological weaponry, and that’s what got loose with all of this? Is that even within the realm of possibility? Would that explain some of the cover-up?
CHANG: You know, that’s not crazy, governor. At the Wuhan Institute of Virology, which is expected to be the source of the outbreak, they kept more than 1500 types of coronaviruses. And the question is, what were they doing there with those coronaviruses? Now, most scientists believe that the coronavirus that did get loose was naturally occurring, it was not spliced. But I think that Chinese officials, having seen what the disease did to China, crippling society, I think that what they tried to do was to try to make sure that it escaped China to level the playing field. They did two things, governor. First of all, they tried to convince the world that this disease was not human-to-human transmissible when they knew that it was. Also, they pressured countries to accept arrivals from China. You put those two things together and the inevitable conclusion is, no this wasn’t a bioweapon when it started but it turned into one because Chinese leaders saw an opportunity to cripple other societies.
Meanwhile, on the 4/26/2020 edition of Fox And Friends Sunday, we have people, in that case host Pete Hegseth, comparing stay at home orders to “tyranny.”
Meanwhile, Fox Host Laura Ingram is still comparing COVID-19 to a flu, a pretty bad bioweapon all things considered.
It’s not just the anti-China bias that bothers me, but it’s them trying to one up each other in the most ridiculous ways. At first, the claim was that China did not do enough to stop it — I guess besides the whole “putting the nation under quarantine and building a bunch of hospitals in less than a week” part.
For that matter, it’s the idea that the independent circuit claims to rage against the machine, when all they’re doing is arguing points the establishment can’t make without sounding crazy. At time of writing, 90% of Americans consider China a threat to the United States. Yet, those claiming to fight the power are not trying to rationally analyze rather this is true, and instead are one upping each other and how they can scare us next.