This week’s Liberal Media Scream features CNN media critic Brian Stelter mocking the coverage of President Joe Biden’s new “Disinformation Governance Board,” dubbed the “Truth Ministry” by conservative foes and media.
“There’s this incredible backlash to something that sounds like a basic government bureaucracy,” said Stelter on his Sunday show after his guest, Moira Whelan of the National Democratic Institute, described it as a harmless little effort.
Our own media critic, Brent Baker of the Media Research Center, asked a question posed all weekend by those worried about the new board. What if former President Donald Trump had proposed a truth department like the one headed by Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas?
From CNN’s Reliable Sources on Sunday, May 1:
BRIAN STELTER: Here in the U.S., there’s been an uproar in recent days about the Department of Homeland Security setting up what they call a Disinformation Governance Board. This has been mostly a Foxworld story — it did come up earlier today on CNN's State of the Union, but I don’t think people know what it is and what it isn’t, and there’s just been a lot of right-wing uproar without knowing what it is, so are you aware of this at all? What is this all about?
MOIRA WHELAN, NATIONAL DEMOCRATIC INSTITUTE: Aware of it. And I think the first thing is that it’s a board, exactly as we say. It is meant to bring together people to coordinate a lot of the efforts inside of DHS. That means law enforcement. That means emergency services like FEMA. They’ve all been doing counter-disinformation efforts for a while to give us accurate information about human rights abuses, but also about disasters and where people can get assistance. So coordinating that activity and making it speak with one voice and being a stronger advocate to tech companies and engaging the public and academia, that’s really what they’re after.
STELTER: Well, that sounds like common sense. But when I Google this, all I see is, like, “Joe Biden’s Ministry of Truth,” and they’re going to, you know, like, it’s — there’s this incredible backlash to something that sounds like a basic government bureaucracy.
WHELAN: It is basic government bureaucracy ...
Brent Baker, vice president of research and publications for the Media Research Center, explains our weekly pick: “What could be more ominous to a true journalist than a government agency setting itself up to judge what is disinformation? Sounds very Orwellian, compounded by the fact the woman chosen to run it has a record of spreading disinformation to advance the interests of liberal Democrats. Add it up, and condemning it should have been the top story on Stelter’s show. Imagine what his outrage would have been if this occurred during the Trump presidency.”
Rating: FOUR out of FIVE SCREAMS.