It’s one thing to witness the sausage being made. It’s quite another to see legitimately poisonous ingredients tossed in alongside the pig lips and ass parts.
In their zeal to own the rubes, the mainstream media is spending their Labor Day weekend inventing stories based on their view of people living in non-coastal states. Much like they highlighted two or three stories last year of people ingesting fish tank cleaner in an effort to ward off COVID, they’ve found their 2021 version of hydrochloroquine in horse de-wormer Ivermectin.
The narrative goes that bib overall-wearing hicks in flyover country are SO determined to avoid getting the COVID vaccine that they are latching on to tenuous reports about the efficacy of ivermectin in treating the symptoms. This hits on too many stereotypes for the august media class to ignore. They are now reacting with all of the dignity of a starving wolf attacking a three-day old pork chop.
The two most egregious violators are an organization that has a fairly-good reputation…and another whose reputation is shit—yet still gets gullible people to take them seriously. The Associated Press reported that 70% of recent calls to the Mississippi Poison Control Center were from people who had ingested ivermectin to try to treat COVID-19. A correction issued a short time later acknowledges that it was actually only 2%. I’m just a silly yahoo from the foothills, but even I know that is not a “correction.” That is a “refutation.”
Given the AP’s business model, hundreds of local/regional outlets shared the original story. It is unknown how many have shared the correction but it is substantially less. Of course, that’s the way “fake news” spreads these days. The unbiased Mainstream Media makes a “mistake.” 99% of the time it is a mistake that casts Republicans in a negative light. If these were truly honest mistakes, then SOME of them would paint them in a positive light…law of averages, right?
But no. These are mistakes borne out of a preconceived effort to make conservatives look bad. Most of them are the result of journalists abandoning all professional discipline in order to “get one over” on someone they hate.
Of course they issue a retraction/correction, as if that makes everything better. And of course that retraction is seen by about a tenth of the people who saw the original story.
Again…if these mistakes sometimes made rural conservatives look better than they deserve, you would have a point. But they do not. They primarily flow in one direction. That is because they are NOT “mistakes.”
Going even lower than the AP, enter the reliably-execrable Rolling Stone magazine. The publication that has been at the center of two of the worst cases of journalistic malpractice in modern history is STILL churning out pablum that some are ingesting like so much ivermectin.
They were not content to err with a mere mathematical error. Oh no. They put out a story that would have made a National Enquirer editor wince. They reported that an Oklahoma hospital was so overwhelmed with patients who had overdosed on ‘horse dewormer meds’ that gunshot victims were having to wait for beds.
I mean seriously. This reads like Proggie Fan Fiction. They picked up the initial details from a local newspaper. But instead of taking the extraordinary step of calling the hospital to confirm the findings, they ran with it—with a few embellishments. Of course, a quick call to the hospital would have told them they were treating NO such patients. And had NEVER treated anyone with those symptoms. Ah, but that would have shredded the narrative about stupid MAGA supporters slurping horse medicine and being hospitalized, preventing treatment of all of the rednecks who are being randomly shot because of all of the guns roaming around in Oklahoma. I swear, I bet the writers got sexually excited while drawing this one up.
And the liberal Twitter Blue Check Brigade could NOT help themselves. They shared this story with reckless abandon. It was funny to watch their reaction hours later when the story was exposed as bunk. Some were STILL trying to make it true. Most just dirty-deleted their tweet. A couple of honorable ones issued a mea culpa and took their medicine.
This story, and the vociferousness with which it was shared shows the true colors of the media and their allies. They gobbled it up and asked for seconds—and were completely incurious about the source. That’s because they’re not hungry for the truth. They are hungry for nourishment to feed their predetermined narrative. They could NOT ignore a story like this which seemed to be the Holy Grail in terms of narrative-enhancing tropes that they could exploit.
It brought to mind another Rolling Stone hoax that checked off all of the same boxes. The Duke Lacrosse case dominated the headlines in 2004. When it broke, the mainstream media sprang into action. Soon, stories appeared in the Durham Herald-Sun about the “culture” of the lacrosse team. Of course that means they were mostly rich white boys. The Raleigh News and Observer even sent reporters to the Jersey suburb where two of the accused lived—taking special care to point out that the average home in the area sold for nearly a million dollars. They featured pictures of the subdivision, lest anyone think they were making it up.
None of these stories were meant to bring about truth, perspective or facts. They were meant to add to the myriad of things that already divide us. They injected high-octane fuel into an already-combustible mixture of angst and desperation. The media wanted chaos to fuel sales. And they wanted most of all to outrage people who’ve learned little else other than outrage. It basically confirmed every stereotype that the writers and their editors held about certain groups of people. As such, they abandoned all journalistic discipline and framed the facts in such a manner as to buttress their narrative. Unfortunately, the ACTUAL facts told a much different story.
Even with that saga fresh in their minds, Rolling Stone STILL didn’t give a damn. In 2016, they gave us a pile of journalistic dreck which will stand the test of time. The “UVa Rape on Campus.” It was a story of an alleged rape on the campus of the august school. And it was a lie. The same issues played out. The writers were told a story that appealed to their stereotypical prejudices. When one read the article, it was like each character introduced came straight out of central casting. Everyone wearing clearly-defined white hats and black hats. Sound familiar?
The worst part is, there are rarely consequences for those who intentionally spread exaggerations and falsehoods in order to demonize people they do not like. Yes, Mike Nifong was disbarred for prosecutoral misconduct in the Duke Lacrosse case, but the media ghouls who intentionally poured high-octane fuel on a raging fire paid NO price. The same sanctimonious Senators who cast aspersions on Brett Kavanaugh with no corroborating evidence are (mostly) still in the Senate. The jackasses who tried to immediately cast teens wearing MAGA hats as evil incarnate have still been braying about other BS.
At this point, if you happen upon an ivermectin/“horse dewormer” story, your best bet is to assume the story is BS. That it is merely another attempt by sophisticated urbanites to guffaw at “those Neanderthals” while sipping their Caramel Macchiatos. And you will be correct far more often than not.