How do the Murdochs manipulate public opinion with FOX to push their political agenda and get richer?
Understand how billionaires manipulate the public through their media outlets to get what they want. Manipulate elections. Topple governments toppled. Erode trust in elections. Support dictators. Spread COVID conspiracy theories. Appoint extremist judges. Stoke racism and violence. Ruin lives by character assassination.
What is the character assassination playbook? How was it used by Fox News against Seth Rich? How can billionaires who can topple governments be held accountable? Follow along with this PowerMap that explains the Seth Rich conspiracy theory spread by Fox News.
- Six Steps To Annihilate An Opponent - Rand Waltzman
- Fox News and Seth Rich: A Conspiracy Theory, Two Years Later - Media Matters
- How a baseless conspiracy theory grew around Seth Rich's murder - PBS
- Murdoch explores reuniting Fox and News Corp. which owns the Wall Street Journal and HarperCollins - CNBC
NEWS CORP: Profits and power from spreading conspiracy theories
The malicious denunciation or slandering of another person, especially as part of an effort to ruin the reputation of a public figure.
Rand Waltzman is an expert in disinformation and the Founding Board Member at Information Professionals Association. He describes character assassination as a six step process. I used his model in explaining how Fox news attacked Seth Rich.
- Launch: Amplify a remark that relatively few saw or heard. Publish a video and produce a headline that will activate supporters. Your strength is speed, volume and breadth.
- Distribute: Circulate your news story to as many potentially cooperative reporters as possible. Reporters whose ignorance you can rely on.
- Outreach: Identify and encourage like minded organizations to whip up outrage and spread your story.
- Escalation: Bring in as many operatives you can to fan the flames when your story crosses from gossip or a one-line news note into mainstream.
- Demands: Encourage those you have worked up to demand an apology from the target. Demand he be fired, resign or drop out of a race.
- Pressure: Turn up the pressure by causing a rapid-fire succession of stories. Convince target's supporters to withdraw their support.
Fox News and Seth Rich
- Lawsuit accuses Ed Butowsky, a Republican donor, of working with the White House on a false (and eventually retracted) Fox News story about the murder of DNC staffer Seth Rich.
- His parents, Joel and Mary Rich filed a lawsuit against Fox News, investigative reporter Malia Zimmerman and commenter Ed Butowsky, for including "false and fabricated facts".
- Butowsky reportedly urged Fox staffers to stress in their reporting on the impending Rich story that “the Russians did not hack our computer systems and steal emails and there was no collusion like trump with the Russians,” according to Wheeler’s complaint.
- "And they published, republished, and publicized the sham story...painting Seth Rich as a criminal and a traitor to the United States," the lawsuit states. - NY Daily News
- Fox News put itself ﬁrmly behind that con-spiracy theory with a dubiously thin online article and a despicable series of on air segments." - Media Matters
Public manipulation. Political agenda.
"The episode also demonstrated how fake news can be flung from fringe media to the mainstream. A conspiracy theory that began on pro-President Trump message boards — a theory that Rich was actually a mole who wanted to expose corruption at the DNC — was fed by Russian news outlets including RT and Sputnik. The Daily Mail, Fox News’s website and several other mainstream outlets with large audiences churned through false information and leading questions, sowing confusion that Rich’s family struggled to combat. In addition to Hannity, former House speaker Newt Gingrich on Sunday said on “Fox and Friends” that the story was worth investigating, a sentiment he repeated in a short interview with The Washington Post. - WaPo
Have media empire. Will manipulate.
- Dominion Voting sues Fox News and Murdochs - Dominion Voting Systems’ defamation lawsuit against Fox Corporation... alleged Fox executives including Rupert Murdoch and son Lachlan led Fox News’ effort to push baseless election fraud claims involving Dominion machines despite allegedly knowing they were false. - Forbes
- Fox News goes all in on smearing Dr. Christine Blasey Ford to help Kavanaugh nomination - President Trump’s favorite TV channel is all in on discrediting her. Guests on Laura Ingraham’s show repeatedly teamed up with the host to smear Ford. - Think Progress
- Murdoch push from Britain to leave the European Union (BREXIT) - "I once asked Rupert Murdoch why he was so opposed to the European Union. 'That’s easy,' he replied. 'When I go into Downing Street they do what I say; when I go to Brussels they take no notice." - Anthony Hilton column for the Evening Standard.
- Fox News pushes dangerous COVID conspiracy theories - A poll found that fully half (50%) of people who get their news primarily from Fox believe Gates wants to vaccinate Americans in order to digitally track them. Among MSNBC viewers, that number was just 15%. - Media Matters
- Fox pushes Pro-Putin Russian propaganda - Fox News has become a platform for propaganda that serves Putin and undercuts Ukraine. Tucker Carlson, Laura Ingraham, and Greg Gutfeld—are peddling arguments that coincide with Putin’s interests. - The Bulwark
- Fox News Staff Erupts Over Network Racism: Bosses ‘Created a White Supremacist Cell’. Many of the network’s Black staffers took part in a phone call with company brass to confront Fox’s increasingly racist and hostile rhetoric towards the protests against police brutality." - Daily Beast
- Fox News settlement with Seth Rich parents
- Fox News and Seth Rich: A Timeline by Media Matters
- Wheeler complaint against Fox News
TakeAway: Beware of billionaire owned media outlets manipulating the public to get whatever they want and install their chosen politicians. Understand the Fox News character assassination playbook to fight disinformation. Lawsuits help hold media outlets accountable for the lies they spread.
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