33 Comments

Holy Shit! I am in awe. We all owe you a debt of gratitude for your brilliance and how you choose to use it.

Expand full comment
founding

Perfectly said, Becky.

Can you imagine the effect on the world if our media outlets did this brand of journalism for a living?

Expand full comment

Many seem too interested in their finances than the news.

Expand full comment

This is dedication, right here. Not only for reading transcripts, but having to assault your own eyes with Trump's vile garbage so the rest of us can have context

Expand full comment

This a moment in history that, when written, will be all about how mainstream media disseminated false information, lies and propaganda in order to maintain corporate power. It's a good time for American citizens to cancel their subscriptions to MSM (WashPo, NYT, etc) and to stop tuning in to cable programming such as CNN. Fascism is on the march in America, and it is time now to do battle. The cowering democrats and donors who are calling for Biden to drop out are simply trying to hold on to their power because they do not have faith that Biden will win. But they are refusing to actually fight for democracy - and, as usual, are bowing before the authoritarian movement of MAGA and the GOP. Why are are no major democratic leaders making the same argument that Seth has so meticulously laid out? It's obvious to anyone. If you're a rapist and a felon and speak lies constantly and have tried to overthrow the government and have stolen (and probably sold to highest bidder) government classified documents, then, well, it seems pretty obvious that your challengers should be shouting from the rooftops that you need to step out of the race. With all of his criminal actions and lies, it is indeed far past time for Trump to remove himself from the electoral process, and he should do so immediately. [BTW, I am not suggesting a wish fulfillment or just my personal preference: This is the exact strategy democratic leadership should be taking immediately - going on a strong offense - and DEMANDING PUBLICLY DAILY IN ALL MEDIA, for all the reasons we know, that Trump remove himself from this race.]

Expand full comment

Very well stated...will share with my cohort. Thanks!

Expand full comment

Yes, please share everywhere with anyone. I actually was inspired to write this after watching the Sunday (today's) episode of The Mary Trump Show, which I highly recommend.

Expand full comment
Jul 1·edited Jul 1

CNN's debate moderation failure, an trip-and-stumble failure of understanding, preparation and response to Trump's well-established Gish Gallop, really is true journalistic malpractice.

Future national debates cannot be managed and moderated by corporate media. Finito.

At minimum, CNN's malpractice will keep America off-center for years.

At worst, CNN's malpractice will finalize the complete and unhindered make-over financed by the dark oligarchs and billionaires who also purchased SCOTUS' overturn of Chevron, Roe, among others.

Yes, those same uber-rich, also behind the politically-historic right turns across the globe.

Let's consider ratcheting-up our suspicions and cynicism a notch or two.

Has corporate media surrendered to the billionaires who want it all, regardless of who gets the ultimate short straw? Have most corporations thrown in the towel, enabling owner oligarchs and their own CEOs?

Simply, there are strong coincidences, too strong to ignore: CNN's debate ditch-driving; The NYTimes' unprecedented, immediate (next day) call for Biden to drop-out; Washington Post’s poll association with George Mason University (and the Koch network) showing Trump ahead by 6 points.

Add SCOTUS decisions - Chevron, post-Roe, Jan 6, among others - all happening in the span of week.

More than enough to perk the common man questions re: the new billionaire-friendly status-quo and the potential sell-out of corporate media.

Expand full comment

It is a mistake to consider the corporate media separate from the billionaire class.

They ARE part of or tools of the billionaire class (by their ownership and who their owners install in top management to execute their will). The 'journalists' do what the CEO tells them, or they are removed (Shephard Smith, Chris Wallace, Mehdi Hasan, Cenk Uygyur, etc.).

The journalists options are to do as they are told (which doesn't need to be explicit), or try to scratch out a living in social media spaces.

Expand full comment

Yes, indeed. Jane Mayer's Dark Money is a must read. Each of us has the duty to identify journalists who have rejected corporate employment. Seth Abramson is an excellent example. I live in the same county as Joe Oltmann (Dominion

Voting conspiracies). Seth's Oltmann expose revealed much deeper facts and connections than mainstream.

Expand full comment

What a great job of bringing this to such an eloquent presentation. Trump is such a horrid excuse for a human being. How can they allow him anywhere near the White House and classified documents and nuclear weapons. They took his guns from him because he is a felon . The things he is doing get crazier every day. He is a danger to all of us.

Thank you for putting this report together..

Expand full comment

Impressive fact checking--kudos to Seth

Expand full comment

The GOP should have voted for trumps impeachment on the first one and ousted him from office then none of this would have happened. He would have been removed and stopped after withholding money from Ukraine to try to get dirt on Biden from Zelensky. John Roberts let the GOP do whatever they wanted. Jim Jordan was a total jerk through every detail and all of the lies. He should have went to jail then/

Expand full comment

Wow - this is an amazing amount of work to put in within such a short period of time. I am going to mark this email so I can use it as a reference when I want to more quickly find information on any of these topics with a control F search quite likely to lead me to a link. I don't know how you managed to research and write this out already.

I applaud your choices in your fact checking rules, also, especially number one where you count each instance of the same lie each time. It's been noted that despite it being a fact that repetition of a lie increases people's belief in the lie, media has behaved as if it's not another lie if it's not a novel lie. Every instance of the same lie inflicts more damage so every instance counts. Rule number four calls real world BS on the bizarre idea that Trump cannot be held accountable for things he has said or done if he believes he's telling the truth e.g. that he won the election and so on.

The "debate" approach just supplied Trump with more time when he failed to answer a question. He could use his time to broadcast his lies and then they'd give him another minute or so to try again to answer the question... or use for lies, as he chose. Only when someone takes this much time and effort to call them all out and put them at our fingertips does that format carry any repercussion. Thank you.

Expand full comment

Damned straight. Seth really puts the nail on the head with this count of 602 lies. Corporate media peg that number at around 30, ahem. Which means of course that on average Trump repeated each of those bald-faced, shit-faced lies around 20 times. Leaving not much time for him to say another single word -- not that he minded. Or the fawning press, for that matter.

This is a real good time to look back at crazy-sane newscaster Howard Beale's rant in the incomparable 'Network':

"We'll tell you any shit you want to hear. We deal in illusions, man. None of it is true!

But you people sit there, day after day, night after night -- all ages, colors, creeds. We're all you know!

You're beginning to believe the illusions we're spinning here! You're beginning to think that the tube is reality and that your own lives are unreal.

You do whatever the tube tells you -- You dress like the tube. You eat like the tube. You raise your children like the tube. You even think like the tube.

This is mass madness, you maniacs! In God's name, you people are the real thing. We are the illusion!"

Expand full comment

This 4-minute scene is well worth the look -

https://www.americanrhetoric.com/MovieSpeeches/moviespeechnetwork3.html

No wonder Peter Finch won the best actor Oscar posthumously in 1977 for this role in the astonishingly prescient "Network", one of the world's finest films then and now. "Mad as hell" doesn't begin to cover it.

Expand full comment

Isn’t it time to admit that the first amendment cannot defend lies that are intended to cause harm, and especially when they are clearly having the intended effect? In this case, to falsely accuse a political opponent and induce voters to choose the liar as their leader? What sane nation could ever believe that the Constitution’s authors thought their words should defend that type of speech?

Expand full comment

In the Founder’s time, Trump’s lies and insults would have found him challenged to a duel. People had to be a lot more careful then about what they said about someone else.

Expand full comment

Just curious, why are you never on msnbc or cnn?? Do they knwo want you? Or are they afraid of being called out for supporting trump and his lies? Seems as if this would give good press to either to have you on.

Expand full comment

Too many people just accept his lies and expect it which is stunning and dangerous.

Read WAPO comments and most say about his lies, 'Yea, we know, so what?'

It slowly becomes the way things are....

Expand full comment
Jul 1·edited Jul 1

Aaand I was so blown away by the fact checking I almost forgot the reveal on the false flag poll results. Something I also tend to look at if I can, is how the respondent answers certain questions like their stance on abortion because I believe (admittedly with no evidence) that even people who are deliberately being misleading about their status and perhaps some of their answers tend to feel compelled to respond more accurately to questions on more emotionally driven beliefs. (Edited to delete a spare "that").

Expand full comment

Seth, you have my admiration for what you do. This particular read reminds me of my city's employees who maintain our sewer system. You, like they, have my greatest esteem for working with the bloviating Trump's lying word turds.

Expand full comment
Jul 1·edited Jul 1

In addition to this excellent summation, I sure would like to see someone make a video of Trump speaking this torrent of bullshit, with frames of him with a Pinocchio-style grown nose interspersed each time he lies.

Expand full comment

I just discovered Seth Abramson the other day. Yes, he’s impressive. His background is amazing and deserves repeating here:

“Over a thirty-year career in higher education, publishing, criminal investigation, law, and journalism, Seth Abramson (MFA, JD, Ph.D.) has worked at Harvard University, Dartmouth College, Georgetown University, Wesleyan University, University of Iowa, University of Wisconsin at Madison, University of New Hampshire, the New Hampshire Institute of Art, the Institute of Art and Design at New England College, University Press of New England, the Committee for Public Counsel Services’ Boston Trial Unit, and the New Hampshire Public Defender’s Nashua Trial Unit. [He’s an] Iowa Writers’ Workshop and Harvard Law School graduate and attorney in good standing.”

Expand full comment

And, yes, this piece is a significant public service and indicative of why I became a subscriber.

Expand full comment

A PAID subscriber!

Expand full comment
Jul 1·edited Jul 1

Seth, you r capacity to work is astonishing.

Reading through the 601, I would add a couple of criteria to the five enumerated up top:

1) Opinion's stated by Trump that are belied by surveys and polling of the American people; I.e., Trump and his devotees might believe them, but most American don't.

2) Opinions stated by Trump which contradict statements made by him in the past.

To me it's questionable whether these cases are lies. Being at odd with Americans is a knock, for sure. Holding a different opinion now might in fact be a flip-flop, not a lie... .

Expand full comment