Right-wing media groups
| You gotta spin it to win it|
|Stop the presses!|
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The following is a list of right-wing media groups.
Sinclair Broadcast Group
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Sinclair Broadcast Group is a right-wing media giant that pushes alt-right (Sebastian Gorka, Mike Cernovich, "deep state") and pro-Trump propaganda Like its competitor Clear Channel (now iHeartMedia), Sinclair was able to purchase multiple stations in individual markets, and consolidate ownership in regional markets largely by exploiting loopholes in ownership regulations.
Sinclair currently owns 193 television stations. Of these, 126 belong to the "Big Four" networks, with Fox being the most represented network. Another 25 stations are part of the CW Television Network.
Sinclair makes all of its stations run what are known as 'must runs'. These "news" segments include the Terrorism Alert Desk (where Sinclair pushes anti-Muslim "news", even if the stories have not been verified by legit source). Must-run segments often feature former-Trump White House official and campaign surrogate Boris Epshteyn.
Fake false news
Salem Radio Network
|—Vice president of Salem Radio Network Tom Tradup disagrees with Glenn Beck, but only because he's a Mormon.|
Salem Radio Network is a division of Salem Communications. It provides an outlet for neoconservatives but mainly focuses on its support for the religious right, and other radical right voices. It is arguably more extreme than Fox News and more or less promotes right-wing Christian Evangelicalism. It is a major part of conservative talk radio, only being overshadowed by iHeartMedia.
In recent years the network's hosts have become somewhat infamous for being both horribly wrong with nearly every prediction they make and for occasionally having extremely offensive yet utterly bizarre outbursts, which might be a source of hilarity if some people didn't take them seriously. That being said SRN can be considered somewhat obscure to most mainstream audiences, with most of their current punditry being targeted towards a relatively smaller audience (compared to Fox News anyways) that largely consists of devoted wingnuts who think they are listening to actual intellectuals (irony meter at 50% since they push a decent amount of anti-intellectualism as well).
One of the founders of Salem Communications, Stuart Epperson, has been named as one of the most influential evangelicals in America thanks to his company. The company has helped get George Bush and other Republicans elected, and has helped radicalize the GOP by supporting only hardliners and "true conservatives". The Radio Network itself has roughly 103 stations and millions of listeners. Today, almost all the hosts push global warming denialism, Obamacare death panels (like WND they even had ads for ObamaCare survival kits), subtle to not-so-subtle homophobia, and American Exceptionalism, as well as overwhelming support for the Republican Party. The hosts tend to echo one another and most of the time it seems like just one host could do the jobs of all the others. It's safe to say that most liberals and even centrists seriously underestimated the network's power in its early years and when the Fairness Doctrine was repealed, the station managed to dominate others in relatively little time.
Programs and hosts
As a network, Salem is the right-wing version of Air America Radio as most Salem stations carry the entire lineup of hosts save for one local show. In its heyday, Air America required its affiliates to carry the entire lineup.
- William "Bill" Bennett
- Former United States Secretary of Education during the Reagan years and Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy under Bush, he is arguably the most authoritarian of the hosts. Bennett supports the War on Drugs and has said that beheading drug dealers is "morally plausible". He has also said that if, hypothetically speaking, all black babies were aborted, the crime rate would drop (though he didn't actually advocate for it). When he was called out for saying this he basically said he was unfairly condemned for a thought experiment. Despite his urging for self discipline and his organizations opposition to the expansion of legalized gambling, it has been revealed he lost millions gambling in Vegas.
- Mike Gallagher
- Said by some to be, or to had been, the sixth most popular radio host in the U.S. Has apparently called maternity leave a "racket" and has wanted critics of George Bush, which includes Matt Damon and Keith Olbermann, to be detained until the Iraq War was over because they're "traitors". Hates the Clintons and blamed Barack Obama and other Democrats for the fact that Gallagher was unable to sell his house within three weeks, due to their policies not supporting trickle down economics. Wanted Muslims to have their own line at airports, and didn't specify how you would even identify Muslims at airports.
- Dennis Prager
- Most well known for harassing Keith Ellison when Ellison was going to be sworn into office on the Koran, saying that it would hurt American values more than 9/11. He's an anti-environmentalist, pushing the "DDT was banned in Africa" myth as well as global warming denialism, claiming it's just an excuse for the government to take power. He wrote a ten-page essay in 1993 on why homosexuality is bad. It was made fun of in the blogosphere when he wrote columns on why women should submit to sex with their husbands even if they're not in the mood. Has accused Ron Paul, and anyone else he doesn't like, of being a "radical lefty". Like Paul he has a strong online following that defends him no matter what he does. Despite the network's strong Christian leanings, Prager is Jewish.
- Michael Medved
- Possibly the dumbest of the group, saying that Nazi leaders, including Adolf Hitler, were gay and enjoyed having gay orgies. He has written… questionable things about slavery, including that the Africans who were forcibly brought to America had inferior genes to the Europeans who came to America because the African slaves lacked the "adventuring" gene. Thought the movie Happy Feet was being too supportive of gay rights. Like Prager, he is Jewish despite the network's Christian overtones.
- Hugh Hewitt
- Spends most of the day ranting about how liberal he thinks the media is. Got Rand Paul in trouble when he pushed him to talk about "Friends of Hamas", an anti-Israel organization that was supposedly sending money to Chuck Hagel. As it turns out, "Friends of Hamas" never existed in the first place. Championed Mitt Romney for president and thought he would win in a landslide. Oops.
All of the hosts have written books to profit off of their fans. All of these books are well thought out and thought provoking. They argue in favor of neoconservatism and use hasty generalizations about liberals (i.e. Prager calls liberals "utopians") to argue with them. They also lump centrists like the Clintons, Obama, and Chris Matthews in with liberals and left-wingers. Basically, it's another form of their radio show for those who need their own preconceptions confirmed because they don't have enough confidence in their own beliefs.
An upside, maybe?
On the other hand, their Salem Radio Labs division created the open source radio automation package Rivendell (now maintained by Paravel Systems). That can be looked at either of two ways: either some filthy communist mole made a software package that small radio broadcasters can use to make their operations much smoother and gave away the farm from under their bosses' noses, or some ratbastard decided to give away for free the tools that a big radio network uses to homogenize the life out of their programming so other big radio companies could do the same while saving a couple hundred thousand on software licenses while making eight and nine-digit profits.
iHeartMedia, formerly Clear Channel Communications, is a corporation based out of San Antonio, Texas. It deals largely in outdoor advertising and radio broadcasting. The company also has strong sympathies with the American Right-Wing.
"We want the airwaves"
- After one of the Dixie Chicks declared Dubya made them ashamed to be from Texas, their music mysteriously vanished from Clear Channel’s stations. But, you know, Liberal media.
2001 Clear Channel Memorandum
A few days after the 9/11 attacks, the top brass at Clear Channel apparently sent an email to over 1,000 US radio stations "an updated and expanded list of songs with 'questionable lyrics' that they should avoid playing." Clear Channel denied the claim, but it received considerable media coverage at the time.
The question was not that there would be kinds of music that would be inappropriate in the advent of the attacks, but the specific songs Clear Channel ultimately chose. It seemed more like an 1960s-style social conservative attack on popular rock music than an understandable suggestions list. The particularly ironic tunes are listed below.
- almost every famous AC/DC single
- "Smooth Criminal" — Alien Ant Farm (not the Michael Jackson version)
- "We Gotta Get Out of This Place" — The Animals
- "What a Wonderful World" — Louis Armstrong
- "Walk Like an Egyptian" — The Bangles
- "Falling for the First Time" — Barenaked Ladies
- "Sabotage," "Sure Shot" — Beastie Boys
- "A Day in the Life," "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds", "Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da", "Ticket to Ride" — The Beatles
- "Hit Me with Your Best Shot", "Love is a Battlefield"- Pat Benatar
- two Black Sabbath songs, another by frontman Ozzy Osbourne
- "Burnin' for You" — Blue Öyster Cult
- "Smokin'" — Boston
- "Rock the Casbah" — The Clash
- "In the Air Tonight" — Phil Collins
- "The End" — The Doors
- "Knockin' on Heaven's Door" — Bob Dylan (including the Guns N' Roses version)
- "Learn to Fly" — Foo Fighters
- "Brain Stew" — Green Day
- "Hey Joe" — The Jimi Hendrix Experience
- "Only the Good Die Young" — Billy Joel
- "Bennie and the Jets," "Daniel," "Rocket Man" — thevery special Elton John
- "Dust in the Wind" — Kansas
- "Fly Away" — Lenny Kravitz
- "Stairway to Heaven" — Led Zepplin (does NOT need a link)
- "Imagine" — John Lennon
- "Great Balls of Fire" — Jerry Lee Lewis
- "Dancing in the Street" (including the Van Halen version), "Nowhere to Run" — Martha and the Vandellas
- "Crash into Me" — Dave Matthews Band
- "Live and Let Die" — Paul McCartney & Wings (theyreally love the Beatles…)
- "American Pie" — Don McLean
- "Crumblin' Down," "Paper in Fire" — John Mellencamp
- a bunch of Metallica songs
- "99 Luftballons" — Nena
- "Head Like a Hole" — Nine Inch Nails
- "Leaving on a Jet Plane" (well, obviously), "Blowin' in the Wind" — Peter, Paul and Mary
- "Free Fallin'" — Tom Petty
- "Mother," "Run Like Hell" — Pink Floyd
- "(You're the) Devil in Disguise" — Elvis Presley
- "Another One Bites the Dust", "Killer Queen" — Queen (remember Freddie Mercury?)
- the entire Rage Against the Machine catalogue
- "Aeroplane," "Under the Bridge" — Red Hot Chili Peppers
- "It's the End of the World as We Know It (And I Feel Fine)" — REM
- "Ruby Tuesday" — The Rolling Stones
- "Evil Ways" — Santana
- "New York, New York" — Frank Sinatra
- "Bridge over Troubled Water" — Simon & Garfunkel
- "I'm Goin' Down," "I'm on Fire," "War" — Bruce Springsteen
- "Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye" — Steam
- "Morning Has Broken," "Peace Train" —
Yusuf IslamCat Stevens
- "Burning Down the House" — Talking Heads
- "Fire and Rain" — James Taylor
- "Sunday Bloody Sunday" — U2
- "Jump" — Van Halen
- "In the Year 2525" — Zager and Evans
So, yeah. Five points for effort, Clear Channel?
- American Family Association
- Fox News
- Liberal media
- Rush Limbaugh
- Conservative talk radio — Represents the more "mainstream" (but still hardline) Evangelical arm of this industry.
- Liberal talk radio
- Father Coughlin — The prototype right-wing radio host, though his views were more of a populist "radical centrism" a la Chuck Harder. Also, unlike these guys, he was anti-Semitic as well, and late in his career displayed explicit support for fascism and the Axis powers.
- Wingnut welfare
- See the Wikipedia article on Sinclair Broadcast Group.
- YouTube Channel
- New York Times article
- "Clear Channel's Hit List"
- "Music Industry Responds to Terrorism"
- The memorandum, investigated by Snopes.com
- Local TV forced to denounce ‘one-sided news’ by America’s largest media company: Reporters have been required to read from a script about fake news and to air segments on the "Deep State." by Melanie Schmitz (Mar 30, 2018, 3:16 pm) ThinkProgress.
- A short history of the right-wing politics of Sinclair Broadcasting by Alex Kaplan (July 18, 2017 4:59 PM EDT) Media Matters for America.
- The Growth of Sinclair's Conservative Media Empire. The New Yorker, 22 October 2018.
There are regulations that prevent any single company from controlling too large a share of the press, in order to protect competition and the free exchange of ideas. Sinclair has achieved its formidable reach by exploiting loopholes in these regulations. During the past few decades, it has bought small and midsized television-station operators and then circumvented regulations by setting up shell companies that on paper appear to be separate entities but over which Sinclair exerts almost total control.
- Jaycey Fortin and Jonah Engel Bromwich, Sinclair Made Dozens of Local News Anchors Recite the Same Script. The New York Times, 2 April 2018.
Sinclair regularly sends video segments to the stations it owns. These are referred to as “must-runs,” and they can include content like terrorism news updates, commentators speaking in support of President Trump or speeches from company executives like the one from Mr. Livingston last year.
- Trump said Sinclair ‘is far superior to CNN.’ What we know about the conservative media giant. by Eli Rosenberg (April 3 at 6:56 AM) The Washington Post.
- Sinclair Broadcast Group: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO), Youtube, 21 July 2017. Sinclair Broadcast Group is the largest owner of local TV stations in the country. That's alarming considering that they often inject political views into local news.
- Hugh Hewitt being wrong on virtually every election outcome in both 2008 and 2012
- Dennis Prager being wrong on the “In God We Trust” motto not being shown on television
- Michael Medved's book on why Obama will lose in 2012
- Bill Bennett on Mitt Romney's "momentum".
- http://rivendellaudio.org http://rivendell.tryphon.org/wiki/Main_Page
- Clear Channel: About Us From their website.
- Dixie Chicks Axed by Clear Channel, Jacksonville Business Journal.
- "It's the End of the World as Clear Channel Knows It." Slate. 2001 September 17.
- Hit Me with Your Best Shot
- Rock the Casbah
- In the Air Tonight
- Dancing in the Street
- Live and Let Die
- 99 Luftballons
- Leaving on a Jet Plane
- Another One Bites the Dust
- It's the End of the World as We Know It (And I Feel Fine)
- Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye
- Burning Down the House