Disturbing, to say the least:
Earlier this month, CNN’s Brian Stelter broke the news that Sinclair Broadcast Group, owner or operator of nearly 200 television stations in the U.S., would be forcing its news anchors to record a promo about “the troubling trend of irresponsible, one sided news stories plaguing our country.” The script, which parrots Donald Trump’s oft-declarations of developments negative to his presidency as “fake news,” brought upheaval to newsrooms already dismayed with Sinclair’s consistent interference to bring right-wing propaganda to local television broadcasts.
You might remember Sinclair from its having been featured on John Oliver’s Last Week Tonight last year, or from its requiring in 2004 of affiliates to air anti-John Kerry propaganda, or perhaps because it’s your own local affiliate running inflammatory “Terrorism Alerts” or required editorials from former Trump adviser Boris Epshteyn, he of the famed Holocaust Remembrance Day statement that failed to mention Jewish people.
In what seems like a century ago (in reality, it was perhaps closer to a decade ago), progressives who advocated breaking up the banks were lambasted for having the audacity to suggest that perhaps the economy would be better off if only a handful of banks couldn’t crash the world economy. Naturally, their views were marginalized and uniformly ignored by Very Serious people.
Although perhaps even less popular of an idea, let’s break up media conglomerates. Why should Sinclair even be able to own so many stations?