Right-wing media groups
|You gotta spin it to win it|
|Stop the presses!|
|We want pictures|
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.
In 2020, Sinclair paid the US Government $48 million, the largest civil penalty involving a broadcaster for the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in history. The fine was for smarmy business dealings related to their attempted acquisition of Tribune Media stations in 2018.
Sinclair makes all of its stations run what are known as 'must runs'. These segments include the Terrorism Alert Desk, where Sinclair pushes anti-Muslim "news" even if the stories aren't verified by legit sources. 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, focusing on supporting 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.
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 got 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 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 got aborted, the crime rate would drop (though he didn't advocate for it). When Bennett got called out for it, he said he unfairly got condemned for a thought experiment. Despite his urging for self-discipline and his organization's 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 called maternity leave a "racket" and has wanted critics of George Bush, which includes Matt Damon and Keith Olbermann, to get 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 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 get 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 got 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 immoral. People mocked it 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 an online following that defends him no matter what he does. Despite the network's 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 the "Friends of Hamas" 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 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. It's another form of their radio show for those who need their 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). People can examine this in either of two ways. Some filthy communist mole could have made a software package that small radio broadcasters use to smooth their operations and exposed the farm from under their bosses' noses. Alternatively, some rat bastard could have chosen to give away for free the tools that a big radio network homogenizes the life out of their programming with so other big radio companies could do the same while saving on software licenses.
iHeartMedia, formerly Clear Channel Communications, is a corporation based out of San Antonio, Texas. It deals largely in radio broadcasting. The company also has strong sympathies with the American Right-Wing. The company spun-out its outdoor advertising as a separate company which retained the Clear Channel brand in 2019.
"We want the airwaves"
- After a member of The Chicks (back when the group was called 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.
- 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, and late in his career displayed explicit support for fascism and the Axis powers.
- Wingnut welfare
- 2001 Clear Channel memorandum
- See the Wikipedia article on Sinclair Broadcast Group.
- YouTube Channel
- New York Times article
- "Clear Channel's Hit List"
- "Music Industry Responds to Terrorism"
- Local TV forced to denounce 'one-sided news' by America's largest media company: Reporters must 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 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.
- Sinclair Broadcasting will pay $48 million civil penalty to FCC. CNN, 6 May 2020.
- David Folkenflik, FCC Fines Sinclair Record $48 Million For Deceptive Bid For Tribune Stations. NPR, 7 May 2020.
- 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 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
- iHeartMedia homepage From their website.
- Dixie Chicks Axed by Clear Channel, Jacksonville Business Journal.