In a scathing year-in-review column over at Townhall, conservative media watchdogs Brent Bozell and Tim Graham criticized the mainstream political media for failing to take into account that, two years into his presidency, Donald Trump has not become the Hilter-esque figure they were all warning about when he was first elected. Instead of taming their coverage to match the reality – rather than the dark fantasy – of what Trump’s presidency has been, they write, the media has doubled-down on the craziness. “The wild conspiracy theories about Trump never stop,” they write.
Don’t go looking for “fact-checkers” to evaluate how much evidence the cable “news” folks have mustered. During the temporary summer panic over separating illegal-immigrant parents and children at the border, MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough actually said: “Children are being marched away to showers, just like the Nazis said they were taking people to the showers, and then they never came back. You’d think they would use another trick.”
“Just like the Nazis”? Where was PolitiFact to calmly explain that Mexican and Guatemalan kids were not in fact being marched to poison gas chambers?
The comparisons to dictators (especially Hitler) were once shocking, but no longer. These smears arrive almost daily. Take perpetually malcontent Steve Schmidt lecturing on MSNBC. Trump “creates a mass sense of victimization amongst his base,” he said. “And then he asserts extraordinary claims of power to protect the victims from the scapegoated populations and the nefarious conspiracy. That is fundamentally illiberal, deeply un-American, and, frankly, could be straight out of Munich circa 1928.”
Over the course of their column, Bozell and Graham highlight the many (many) instances in which cable news pundits and newspaper columnists have cited Hitler, Nazis, Kim Jong Un, the Ku KIux Klan, and other dark specters of history to punch up their Trump administration criticism with a heavy dollop of insanity.
They recall actor Peter Fonda, who said Americans should take Barron Trump from his family and “put him in a cage with pedophiles.”
They remember good old Joy Behar, who suggested Mike Pence was suffering from “mental illness” for saying he talked to Jesus.
They then remind readers that, perhaps, there is a very good reason that Trump calls the fake news media the “enemy of the people.”
There was a time when we hoped that the media might actually calm down and begin treating Trump – if not like their God, Obama – then at least like a normal sitting U.S. president. Criticism, fine. Allusions to Hitler and impending global catastrophe after every Tweet from the Oval Office? Not fine.
But we must remember: They are only digging their own grave. They may not quite see it yet, but it’s happening. And every year, it’s getting a little deeper.