The Media Research Center’s Tim Graham on Friday declared that “hatred and the loathing and the disgust” is a lot easier to spot from journalists these days. Appearing on Fox and Friends to promote Unmasked: Big Media's War Against Trump, Graham called for journalists to simply do their jobs: “We want reporters to tell us what happened today. What did politicians say today? And I would even like them to say what politicians said in public instead of always what they said behind the scenes.”
He added, “What's a lot easier to pick out today is the hatred and the loathing and the disgust. They seem to lead with that instead of leading with the facts.”
Graham co-authored Unmasked with Brent Bozell and you can find it at any major bookstore or online. For more on what’s in the book, go here.
[Thanks to MRC intern Aiden Jackson for the transcript.]
A transcript of the Fox and Friends segment is below. Click “expand” to read more.
Fox and Friends
AINSLEY EARHARDT: We have heard the President call out fake news before. And now many Americans are saying made-up news is a critical issue that needs to be stopped.
BRIAN KILMEADE: A Pew Research survey finds that Americans think made-up news is so bad it's an even bigger problem than violent crime and terrorism.
EARHARDT: Here to react is Tim Graham. He's the executive editor of NewsBusters and director at the Media Research Center and co-author of Unmasked Big Media's War Against Trump. Good morning to you, Tim.
TIM GRAHAM: Good morning.
EARHARDT: So why is this so dangerous? Why is fake news -- you say it's extremely dangerous, why?
GRAHAM: We need good information. We should all be seeking high quality information and that's a hard thing to do these days sometimes. Because there is so much in the so-called mainstream media that's encrusted with opinion. We write about the difference between fake news, false news and biased news. We just have so much biased news every day. We have just come off two years of the news media constantly telling us that President Trump was going to be impeached or something terrible is going to happen because Robert Mueller was going to have all the goods in this report that was going to do the President in and then nothing happened. So why do we get two years of this? Now the Democrats are trying to give us even more years of it.
KILMEADE: I think Tim, the thing that stands out is people care. They care because a great percentage have relayed fake news, unknowingly to other people. And they are embarrassed by it. After a while they throw up their hands and say I don't know what to believe anymore. You say I would like to wear a t-shirt that says stop telling us about tomorrow. Tell us about what actually happened today.
GRAHAM: Exactly. We want a news media. We want reporters to tell us what happened today. What did politicians say today? And I would even like them to say what politicians said in public instead of always what they said behind the scenes. What they said anonymously to reporters. How do we trust anonymously sourced reports from newspapers with bold anti-Trump slogans like "Democracy Dies in Darkness"? I just don't trust that kind of stuff.
EARHARDT: What are they saying? Give us an example of what is going to happen tomorrow that they are focused on.
GRAHAM: Well, it is, this for example, the Mueller report, the Politico has a column out right now that CNN was talking about yesterday. That if the President loses the election, then under Pelosi, he will be indicted. You know. It's all that speculation that something terrible is about to happen.
KILMEADE: Right, so the Pew Research survey talking about the impact of made up news, 68% said it has a big impact on Americans' confidence in government. 54% say big impact in Americans' confidence in each other. And then big impact on political leaders' ability to get work done is 51%. It's obviously something that people really care about. And it used to be very easy. You pick up the newspaper, watch the news, and you believed it. Now we all know Walter Cronkite upon further review, some of these anchors did have a point of view and they kind of weaved it in. But it was a lot easier to pick out than it is today and it's driving people crazy.
GRAHAM: What's a lot easier to pick out today is the hatred and the loathing and the disgust. They seem to lead with that instead of leading with the facts. That's where they will say we need more shared facts. Well, a lot of times what they define as fact is, "Trump voters are idiots. The President is a criminal." Those are not facts. Those are your hateful opinions. Let's not confuse them.
EARHARDT: It could be dangerous in the fact it doesn't just affect how people vote at the polls. It could also go even further than that. And affect hatred and anger toward one another and then lead to violence.
GRAHAM: Well, and this is really, this sort of trend has basically happened since the Vietnam and Watergate days. The press basically decided it was time to be crusaders, to create a right side of history. And they are not moderators or mediators. That's what we would -- could really use.
KILMEADE: Tim, real quick. You think the media has a war against Trump in particular. Real quick, why Trump? What is it about him?
GRAHAM: Well, for one, I mean, he has always been pretty hostile to them and calling them out as fake news. I think it's because he doesn't observe any of the rules that they have sort of established. Right? I mean the John McCains' and the George Bushes' all followed the rules. And they can't stand that he doesn't play by the rules they have created.
KILMEADE: Right. Every day they are astounded. It's hysterical. Tim Graham, congratulations you coauthored this book, Unmasked Big Media's War Against Trump.
GRAHAM: Thank you.