“Accurate” reporting trumps objectivity

Quote of the day:

Journalists believe objectivity prevents them from accurate reporting, as it bars them from channeling their background and beliefs, the survey found.

Mary Lou Masters
January 31, 2023
Major News Outlets Say They’re Ditching Objectivity In The Name Of ‘Diversity’

Their “own truth” is more valid that “the truth” or even there is no absolute truth. If they believe something, it is just as valid as any other “truth”.

This reminds me of something daughter Jaime observed and found life changing. It is closely related to, if not the same as, Peterson Syndrome where the person does not have a process to determine truth from falsity. Some people are totally oblivious to a distinction between the truth and beliefs. They lack the mental processes to understand the difference.

I’m not quite as cynical as daughter Jaime on this topic, but that could be a personality flaw on my part. I’m more of an optimist than she is.

Quote of the day—John R. Lott, Jr.

While the FBI claims that just 4.4% of active shootings were stopped by law-abiding citizens carrying guns, the percentage that I found was 34%. We had more lucky finding recent cases, and the proportion of cases stopped in 2021 was even higher – 49%.

In places where law-abiding citizens are allowed to carry firearms, the percentage of active shootings stopped is above 50% for the entire 2014 to 2021 period. And, again, we are more confident that we have more of the cases from recent years. The figure reaches a lofty 58% in 2021.

In order to follow the FBI’s definition, I also had to exclude 24 cases because a law-abiding person with a gun stopped the attacker before he was able to get off a shot.

But there is a more basic problem in the reliance on news coverage to determine whether an active shooting was stopped by an armed civilian. The news media has a clear bias for covering cases where bad things happen over cases where bad things are prevented.

John R. Lott, Jr.
President, Crime Preven9on Research Center
December 15, 2022
Testimony Before the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security
[Via David Hardy.

I’m not sure where I heard it, but someone else commented on a related matter that they asked a reporter or editor why they didn’t report on successful self-defense use of guns. The answer was, “We don’t want to encourage that.” Yet, they apparently have no problem reporting on, also known as “encouraging”, mass shootings.

That should tell you all you need to know about the character of such people.—Joe]

Quote of the day—Ryan Busse

We still depend on hundreds of laws that keep guns out of crowded public places, stop teenagers from buying handguns, and prohibit criminals from arming themselves with assault rifles. Now, because of a recent Supreme Court ruling, many of these remaining regulations are in danger of being dismantled.

Ryan Busse
December 14, 2022
One Nation Under Guns
[Who does he think he is fooling? Do bans on recreation drugs (including alcohol and tobacco) stop teenagers from buying them? Have background checks increased public safety? No.

If he is actually alarmed by the “dismantling” of these laws it because his intent of the laws is something other than public safety.—Joe]

Quote of the day—Alan Korwin

CNN’s constant coverage of what it calls “mass shootings” disguises the fact that these are mass murders. The villains they always call shooters are actually murderers. America’s 100 million gun owners, they’re shooters—decent righteous people practicing, learning, teaching and when needed, defending themselves and others facing violent criminals. Self-defense with guns is absent from CNN but not in real life—a total misinformation and misdirection campaign.

The Associated Press once told me they don’t cover incidents of self defense because they don’t want to inspire copycats. So why do they give massive saturation coverage to mass murderers? I got no answer.

Alan Korwin
November 1, 2022
Most Gun Reporting is a Misinformation Campaign
[I suspect Korwin does have an answer but doesn’t want to say it out loud. The answer will have greater impact if you come to the realization on your own and many people would probably label it as a crazy conspiracy theory.—Joe]

Quote of the day—Alex Griffing

For the first time since the poll began in 1972, more Americans chose “None at all” to describe their trust in mass media. While 34 percent of respondents chose “Great deal/Fair amount,” which is unchanged since last year and a two-point improvement from the record low of 2016, 38 percent chose “None at all” – a 4 point bump since last year.

Alex Griffing
October 19, 2022
Gallup Records Highest Ever Level of Americans With No Trust At All in Mass Media As GOP Numbers Crater
[That 62% have some level of trust in the mass media is evidence their lies are successful. This will be used as support to continue lying.—Joe]

Quote of the day—Glenn Harlan Reynolds

Guns, and their use, on the other hand, are pretty darn real. You can’t fire a shot now for “future use.” You can’t correct a mistake in a future edition. You can’t do a write-through on a bullet.

What’s more, you can’t spin your way out of a mugging or a rape. Guns, simply by existing, are a reminder that there is another, more concrete world out there, one where reality is more fixed, and where actions have inescapable consequences, consequences that can’t be talked out of existence. I suspect that most journalists are threatened by this world, and perhaps by the sense that they wouldn’t do very well in such situations. Their hostility to guns is a way of dealing with insecurity and a form of denial fueled by performance anxiety: If you’re afraid you’re not up to protecting yourself or your family, you compensate by deriding the means of such protection. And, given that it’s a defense mechanism and journalists are herd animals, any colleague who disagrees is a threat who must be shouted down. (Unsurprisingly, of all the journalists I’ve dealt with, the folks at Popular Mechanics—where they write about real things with concrete consequences all the time— were the most comfortable with guns).

If I’m right, then there’s not a lot gun enthusiasts can do to win over journalists in large numbers. You may change a mind or two, but most of them hold their opinions because doing so is less threatening to their self-esteem than agreeing with you. Those who wield a pen have a vested interest in believing that the pen is mightier than the sword. And apparently they’ve been that way at least since Mark Twain’s time.

Glenn Harlan Reynolds
August 2020
Why So Many Media Members Are Opposed to Your Freedom
[See also yesterday’s QOTD about insecurity and performance anxiety.

I’ve read enough insider stories by fed up journalists and seen disconnected from reality reporting of gun events where I was there to know the national mainstream media is, almost without exception, delusional and/or evil. The primary exception is the Newsweek writer who attended Boomershoot (pictures here). But she had Stephanie Sailor “holding her hand” for a couple days and I’m sure that made a big difference.—Joe]

Quote of the day—John R. Lott Jr.

The Crime Prevention Research Center (CPRC), which I head, hired McLaughlin & Associates to survey 1,000 general election voters from July 21-24, 2022. The survey began by asking people whether they supported red flag laws. It then informed respondents that there are no hearings before an individual’s guns are taken away, and that there are no mental health care experts involved in the process.

People initially answered by a two-to-one margin that they support red flag laws (58% to 29%), with the strongest support coming from Democrats, the wealthy, blacks and Hispanics, and people aged 18-29.

However, after being told that there are no court proceedings before an individual’s guns are taken away, and that there are no mental health care experts involved in the process, support changed to opposition (29% to 47%). Strong support plummeted from 34% to 14% and strong opposition rose from 18% to 29%.

John R. Lott Jr.
October 5, 2022
Media Spin on Gun Control Doesn’t Match Voters’ Opinions
[Lies and deception are the only way they can win. And they know that. It is part of their culture. Don’t let them get away with it. Use it as evidence at their trials.—Joe]

Quote of the day—Jonathan Turley

In an age of rage, Washington Post columnist and MSNBC contributor Jennifer Rubin has long been a standout in her attacks on Republicans and conservatives: “We have to collectively, in essence, burn down the Republican Party. We have to level them because if there are survivors, if there are people who weather this storm, they will do it again.” However, her recent column shows that she has made a clean break not only from Republicans but from reason. The writer (long cited by the Post as their “Republican columnist” for balance) has called for the media to abandon balance and impartiality. Rubin is demanding that the media just become overt advocates in refusing to report both sides in the myriad of political issues in this election.

In her column, Rubin rejects the “need for false balance” because the coverage can suggest that Republicans are “rational.”

Jonathan Turley
September 24, 2022
Washington Post Columnist Calls for the End of Impartiality and Balance in Journalism
[This is what they think of you.

Prepare and respond appropriately.—Joe]

No concept of overstating things

You have to wonder how they imagine people will take them seriously when they say things like this:

The Supreme Court’s conservative majority is a threat to the world

The Supreme Court spent recent weeks triggering political and legal earthquakes across America. But its latest audacious blow could affect the entire planet.

After advancing the Republican Party’s agenda by overturning the federal right to an abortion and loosening gun laws, the conservative court majority built by former President Donald Trump on Thursday limited the government’s capacity to fight climate change.

In a 6-3 ruling, the justices held that US law did not give the Environmental Protection Agency the authority to set caps on planet-warming emissions from power plants.

The lies are so outrageous they are funny!

I regard the fact that the legacy media and the politicians they support get away with such extreme lies more of a threat than anything SCOTUS has the power to do.

Quote of the day—Gina Bontempo @FlorioGina

Living in the third world country of San Francisco was actually my first red pill. The veil was pulled back even more when I started working in a digital media newsroom. Then the avalanche really started when I watched one of Trump’s speeches unedited—I knew I was being lied to.

Gina Bontempo @FlorioGina
Tweeted on April 6, 2022
[The legacy media is a bunch of liars.—Joe]

Ruth Ben-Ghiat is a liar

H/T to Ed Driscoll.

Ruth Ben-Ghiat: Ron DeSantis’ Florida state military plan echoes Trump’s autocratic aspirations (nbcnews.com):

The governor is a leader in GOP efforts to create environments conducive to authoritarianism, from opposing Covid vaccination mandates to critical race theory fearmongering.

I’m reminded of a previous blog post where I said:

How does a government “force a free market”? A free market is one free of government interference! Force is required to have anything other than a free market.

And so it is in this case. That Governor DeSantis is opposing vaccination mandates is evidence that he is not an authoritarian. To claim he is autocratic and/or authoritarian is a lie.

Zeeshan Aleem is a liar

The article starts out with an elephant sized clue:

Kyle Rittenhouse’s self-defense case was solid. That’s the problem.

It’s a problem the Rittenhouse had a sold defense? Aleem would have us believe in some bizarre world view where it would be better that Rittenhouse had killed two people and seriously injured a third without being legally justified? That’s crazy talk—unless the objective is to denigrate the use of a firearms for self defense.

If you read the article you can see that is his clear intent. And he doesn’t let little things like facts get in the way of his fevered rant:

For many the verdict is an outrage and a brazen miscarriage of justice. Rittenhouse is a Blue Lives Matter enthusiast who went to protests against a police shooting with a military-style rifle that he obtained illegally,

No. It was legal for him to possess the rifle. This was made clear in the trail and Aleem even mentions this later in his article:

…the judge dismissed the illegal possession of a firearm charge since under Wisconsin law 17-year-olds are allowed to possess long-barreled guns.

Apparently Aleem doesn’t realize reality is immutable. He can’t claim it was illegal and simultaneously admit it legal for Rittenhouse to posses it.

It’s apparently all about the narrative so facts and clear thinking are not the important part. Here’s the important part, in Aleem’s words:

While a gun ostensibly gives an advantage to the gun-wielder, it also heightens their fear of escalation, since losing the gun or misfiring it could result in their own harm. In other words, openly carrying a firearm introduces a perverse logic whereby it makes other people feel less safe and simultaneously increases the chance of violence against those people.

Rittenhouse’s behavior that fateful night is a powerful symbol of the danger of these movements, and the way they intensify social unrest: right-wing militias increase the likelihood of serious violence while purporting to try to put an end to it.

Given the direction of politics in this country, it seems inevitable that these kinds of armed groups will continue to cause chaos, and the Rittenhouse verdict may embolden them even more.

Ultimately I do believe that Rittenhouse behaved irresponsibly and endangered people recklessly, and that the tragic outcome of his behavior merits some kind of punishment. I can’t say exactly what I think that punishment should look like

It seems obvious Aleem believes, “There ought to be a law! I don’t know what that law might be but we can’t let people with his politics defending themselves with a gun.” This reminds me of something pulled from Robert F Williams book “Negros With Guns”:

When the blacks armed themselves, and without firing a shot, defended themselves an old white man in the crowd that was previously chanting, “Kill the niggers!” started screaming and crying like a baby (page 10). He then said, “God damn, God damn, what is this God damn country coming to that the niggers have got guns, the niggers are armed and the police can’t even arrest them!”

Prejudice is an ugly thing.

How to Lie About Guns

By Frank Melloni:

How to Lie About Guns, New York Times Style

One of the easiest ways to lie and not get sued for libel is to simply do so through exclusion. The New York Times is famous for this and if you don’t know enough about guns they can make things sound pretty bad, just by leaving out a little bit of information. In the wake of the Kyle Rittenhouse Verdict we ought to brush up on the tactics of far-left media.

James D. Zirin of The Hill is a liar

It starts with the headline and continues nearly non-stop with the lies:

A miscarriage of justice in Kenosha

The unimaginable has occurred. Kyle Rittenhouse, the admitted killer of two men and maimer of a third, has been acquitted on all counts.

It certainly was imaginable to me and millions of others. After the videos came out it was crystal clear to anyone who had a glimmer of knowledge about the use of lethal force in self defense. The author is a former federal prosecutor and cannot possibly claim ignorance of the law.

On Aug. 25, 2020, Rittenhouse armed himself with a borrowed AR-15-style assault rifle loaded with full metal jacket armor-penetrating ammunition and marched into downtown Kenosha, Wis.

FMJ bullets are not “armor-penetrating”.

An AR-15 is the same kind of gun, in design and function, that our troops carry in the field. But Rittenhouse from the evidence had never undergone any training, military or otherwise, in the use and operation of the deadly weapon, which was illegally purchased and given to him by a friend.

It is not the same kind of gun and does not function the same as any rifle used by any military in at least the last 60 years.

As a (formerly) certified firearms instructor I can say with 100% certainty this was not the first time Rittenhouse had used a firearm. Some people, and I agree with this, say:

Based on the videos I’ve seen Rittenhouse is one of the best weapons handlers under pressure I’ve ever seen.

This was not an untrained person.

The gun was not illegal purchased. There was nothing illegal in any of the transfers of that firearm.

One shot might have qualified as self-defense, but four shots, it would appear, doth a murder make.

False. This was drilled into my General Defensive Handgun classmates and I back in ‘97:

If it ever becomes times to shoot someone, do they need to be shot a little? Or a lot?  If that time comes you should shoot early and often — until the threat is over.  If you shoot a “set”, such as a double tap, you may stop shooting too soon.

Zirin is a former attorney. Having watched the trial we can conclude his education must have been suitably refreshed. That he still claims such falsehoods is evidence of deliberate lies.

Although his second victim, Anthony Huber, was “armed” only with a skateboard, Rittenhouse claimed he shot him dead because he believed Huber was threatening his life.

Rittenhouse was on the ground and Huber hit him in the head with the skateboard. This is clearly lethal force. You are legally allowed, and I would say morally obligated, to defend innocent life using lethal force when confronted with lethal force by your attackers. Zirin learned this in the trial as well because he quoted the judge saying essentially the same thing. The only question here is, “What is the objective of these lies by Zirin?”

The trial was highlighted by emotional and illuminating testimony from Rittenhouse himself, who wept as he protested that he had acted in self-defense when he fatally shot Rosenbaum not once but four times. Rosenbaum had thrown a plastic bag at him and chased him.

Lying by omission. Zirin left out the part about Rosenbaum threating to kill him, then chasing him, and finally attempting to take Rittenhouse’s rifle.

I find it interesting and someone comforting that the poll taken at the end of the article shows I’m not the only one taking issue with this liar:

image

Alexandra Hutzler of Newsweek is a liar

The headline sets the tone with Black Lives Matter Says System Is Upholding ‘White Supremacy’ After Rittenhouse Acquittal. Technically that is true. @Blklivesmatter did tweet that on November 19th. That claim is absurd on the face of it but the author doesn’t even hint there is anything wrong with such a claim. She quotes numerous other falsehoods told by various people and then tells one of her own:

Rittenhouse, then 17, was illegally armed with a semiautomatic rifle and said he traveled from Illinois to help protect businesses during the protests.

False. The judge threw out that charge because it was false. The law is confusing and it would be easy for the average person to believe that claim but numerous lawyers and many ordinary people were able to build the flow diagram to conclude, as did Rittenhouse before carrying the gun, that it was legal. Hutzler even mentions the judge threw out the charge. Why didn’t she get the clue? I suspect she did get the clue but the truth didn’t matter to her. She is a liar and may even be proud that she can (mostly) get away with it.

Stephanie Willis is a liar

Stephanie Willis rambles on about “privilege” and but never gives us any “meat” to back up her claims:

Kyle Rittenhouse being found not guilty on all counts after more than 24 hours of deliberations can be summed up with one simple phrase: White privilege. It’s an all too familiar theme we witness when White defendants are on trial for killing us.

I dare say Kyle Rittenhouse was cloaked with a privilege you cannot find in any legal precedent – The Rittenhouse Privilege. Throughout the trial there were instances in which it was quite apparent that the scales of justice tipped in favor of Kyle Rittenhouse.

Let’s start with the jury makeup. After the jury process, 18 individuals were selected to listen to the trial. Of these 18 individuals, 12 were selected at random by the defendant, Kyle Rittenhouse, to deliberate. These individuals consisted of seven women and five men – only one was a person of color.

The next thing to consider is the venue. The case was tried in Kenosha, which according to Census data is over 75% White. In the past, Kenosha country voted Democratic but went for Donald Trump in the 2016 election. It is also particularly important to consider the fact that Wisconsin is a gun friendly state. But we must also ask ourselves Gun Friendly toward whom?

How is the described jury makeup tipping the scales in favor of Rittenhouse? What, in her mind, would create a balanced trial? What should the composition of the jury be? Where would she think a venue be found? What does the predominate Democrat bias of the county with the outlier of 2016 going to Trump have to do with anything? She says these things as if these were obvious, unquestionable, evidence of bias. Absent a lot more explanation I can only conclude these are the ravings of a paranoid.

Nevertheless, she asserts her conclusion:

The Rittenhouse Privilege has set a precedent. There is now legal precedent which permits individuals to claim self-defense in the most outrageous of cases. Be forewarned – this precedent will only extend to individuals who can claim the Rittenhouse privilege.

With video and still pictures from multiple angles for nearly all the shootings and witnesses testimony consistent with the digital evidence the facts of the case could not be more clear. Rittenhouse met the requirements of the law and was justified in using deadly force against his attackers. That Willis claims to be an attorney, yet asserts this was an “outrageous” because Rittenhouse was found not guilty, only eliminates the defense she is ignorant, and not malicious, in her assertions.

Willis is a liar.

Headline writer is a liar

The headline reads Kyle Rittenhouse verdict violates these 5 standards for claiming self-defense. But if you read the actual article you will not find any such claim.

You can find errors in the article, such as in the Zimmerman/Martin case it is claimed the Florida Stand Your Ground law was an issue. But the writer doesn’t make the false claim the headline writer does.

I have to believe someone was making a deliberate effort to deceive the public and liable Rittenhouse.

Quote of the day—Ryan Chittum

On balance, the press has been a destructive force on this story, from its beginnings in the coverage of the Jacob Blake shooting that set the whole thing off and which we know was justified, to the downplaying of the $50 million in destruction done by rioters in Kenosha, to the libelous portrayal of Rittenhouse and the particulars of what happened. There have been innumerable journalistic disasters in the Trump era, but this is the most blatantly reckless one of them all.

Ryan Chittum
Media critic with the Columbia Journalism Review,
November 21, 2021
Misinformation About Kyle Rittenhouse Case Floods Social Media, TV Networks
[I think Chittum is giving the media too much credit with the claim of “reckless”. With the videos so easily available, with the jury verdict known to everyone, with the claims they make so absurd, I don’t believe they are “reckless”. They are malicious liars.—Joe]

Erwin Chemerinsky of the LA Times is a liar

Lies:

The verdict in the Kyle Rittenhouse trial sends a chilling message

Rittenhouse, then age 17, went to Kenosha, Wis., where protests were expected after police officers shot and seriously injured Jacob Blake. Rittenhouse had an AR-15-style rifle, which he was too young to legally possess. A teenager carrying an assault-style weapon in a tense situation is a recipe for disaster, and that is exactly what happened. Rittenhouse shot and killed two people and seriously wounded a third.

Rittenhouse testified at the trial that he went to the city on Aug. 25, 2020, to provide protection for local businesses and patrol as civil unrest developed. There is so much that is disturbing about that: a teenager deciding that he needed to provide law enforcement, when he lacked training or experience, and illegally arming himself with a semiautomatic rifle.

Not surprisingly, Rittenhouse’s presence with a big weapon provoked a reaction. Joseph Rosenbaum, a person with a history of mental illness who had been released from the hospital that day, allegedly grabbed at Rittenhouse’s gun and then was shot four times and killed. Anthony Huber apparently struck Rittenhouse with a skateboard. Huber then was shot and killed when Rittenhouse thought Huber was reaching for his weapon. Gaige Grosskreutz felt his life was in danger when he saw Huber killed. Grosskreutz reached for a weapon and then was shot and wounded by Rittenhouse.

Rittenhouse was not too young to legally posses the rifle.

Rittenhouse did not decide to be there on his own. He was asked to help defend private property after the police watched it burn the previous night.

Not surprisingly, Rittenhouse’s presence with a big weapon provoked a reaction.

The reaction of normal people is to be polite and not commit crimes such as igniting a dumpster on fire and pushing it into a gas station. That Rosenbaum chased and grabbed (not allegedly, the coroner confirmed muzzle blast marks on his hand) at Rittenhouse’s rifle. Perhaps that his usually victims were young boys caused him to generalize that no serious resistance is to be expected. Regardless, this shows a catastrophic failure of his victim section process and does not reflect poorly on Rittenhouse.

“Huber apparently struck Rittenhouse with a skateboard”? The video and stills are very clear that it happened.

“Grosskreutz reached for a weapon and then was shot..” Lying by omission. Sure, he had to “reach for his gun” before he could use it. But the video shows, and he testified under oath, that he was not shot until he actually pointed his gun at Rittenhouse.