15 September 2019 | Always a Different Standard

So, it appears that before the last Democratic debate, ABC News required that the candidates pledge to refrain from using any bad language. Perhaps not unreasonable, although it was mostly directed at Beto O'Rourke, who had no problem expressing incredulity at the failure of the press to hold anyone accountable in this rotten administration, especially with the lack of movement on gun control.

But then, during this broadcast in some areas, an ad ran that featured a photo of Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s image being burned as if in effigy. Lacking any actual issues to run on, Republicans and their supporters want to focus on the specter of socialism as a way of deflecting their ongoing failure at national governance, for which AOC is their bogeywoman.

Why did this ad run? Well, it didn't run nationally and was purchased through multiple local markets, but it underscores the different standards that exist for Democrats and Republicans in the media: you must hold the former liable for possibly offending Auntie Jane in her midwestern home (where “real” Americans live) with salty talk, but it’s totally okay to connect a single member of Congress from a district in the Bronx and Queens with mass murder that occurred in Cambodia because of ”socialism.” And while ABC News didn’t sign off on this ad, you can be assured that they have no problem tasking Dems for their perceived “incivility” because a fear of right-wingers runs deep at every news organization in America. Media outlets are increasingly coming under single corporate control (Sinclair is the most egregious example) that also affects newsrooms, who are already following the Les Moonves Principle. So politesse is required for Dems, but out of control propaganda made to whip up fear and anger by right-wingers is to remain unchecked.