, Dan Gainor
, fox news
, News and News Media
, News Corporation
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It’s Valentine’s weekend so it’s time to tell a love story. Many in the media have found the new love of their lives – multibillionaire liberal and former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Valentine’s Day was actually Bloomberg’s 78th birthday – and his media admirers are giving him adoring coverage as a present.
But Bloomberg isn’t just a love interest. He’s a sugar daddy. He’s well on his way to spending hundreds of millions of dollars or more of his own money on advertising in newspapers, the Internet, TV and radio. In fact, he’s spending money on media buys as if he’s one of the richest people on Earth – which he is. Forbes magazine estimates his net worth at an almost unimaginable $62.8 billion.
Bloomberg has even resorted to paying Internet posters for meme sponsorships. The phrase “money is no object” really does apply to his campaign spending.
CNN REPORTER ACCUSED OF ‘DISMISSING’ BLOOMBERG’S STOP-AND-FRISK REMARKS PREVIOUSLY WORKED AT BLOOMBERG TELEVISION
Bloomberg didn’t run in the New Hampshire primary, but still got adoring coverage. Reuters headlined a story “Bloomberg turns heads with write-in win in New Hampshire hamlet” in a story about Bloomberg winning three of the five votes cast in Dixville Notch. The tiny precinct has a long tradition of voting at midnight as the day of the New Hampshire primary begins and reporting the first results. Bloomberg reportedly personally called voters to get the meaningless victory.
Major media ate up all three votes. CBS, ABC, MSNBC, PBS and a ton of print and online outlets all covered the ridiculous story. It’s bad when comedians have better news judgment than journalists. “Late Show” host James Corden told his audience: “It shouldn’t be a news story that someone won an election with the same number of votes as there are Jonas brothers.”
Retired ABC News White House correspondent and Sunday news show host Sam Donaldson is ready to vote with Dixville Notch. He wrote a CNN op-ed about joining the ranks of NeverTrump, saying how it’s “an imperative for all of us” to “beat Donald Trump.”
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Naturally, Donaldson also claims that “Mike Bloomberg is the president we need to bring people together and unite our country.” He also appeared on Anderson Cooper’s show on CNN to express his strong support for Bloomberg.
The New York Times was especially ecstatic about the Bloomberg candidacy. Columnist Thomas L. Friedman urged Democrats to pick Bloomberg, saying the former New York City mayor “has the right stuff.”
Friedman depicted Bloomberg as “a moderate progressive with a heart of gold but the toughness of a rattlesnake.” That Bloomberg “gold” has gone “to virtually every progressive cause – gun control, abortion rights, climate change, Planned Parenthood” and many more.
The Times ran two stories about the Democratic Party’s search for a “savior.” One was headlined: “Unless a moderate favorite soon emerges, party leaders may increasingly look to Michael R. Bloomberg as a potential savior.”
In the other piece, the Times declared that “Moderates Search for a Savior.” There’s a huge problem with that. Even the left-wing Washington Post doesn’t think Bloomberg, or any other Democratic presidential candidate, is a moderate. Yet the Times has repeatedly raved about Bloomberg as a “centrist billionaire.”
Even when The New York Times covered a Bloomberg scandal, it downplayed it. Bloomberg’s support for New York’s stop-and-frisk policing was widely derided as racist. Here’s The Times headline: “Bloomberg’s Blunt Defense of Stop-and-Frisk Policy Draws Scrutiny.” Imagine the paper saying any Trump controversy simply “draws scrutiny.”
Politico ran a strange photo essay about the Bloomberg campaign that included a fun nugget most news outlets would have highlighted had the candidate carried an “R” after his name. “What happens when a billionaire self-funds his campaign? Events feature hundreds of free T-shirts and buttons, plus food and alcohol.”
I could fill Madison Square Garden to watch “The View” if I got to offer enough free food and booze. (OK, it would have to be a lot.)
Not to be outdone, our publicly funded NPR highlighted another public relations feature. “Mike Bloomberg Storms Super Tuesday States, Pledging To ‘Get It Done.’” When did NPR start channeling Larry the Cable Guy?
Of course, Bloomberg can always rely on friendly coverage from another major media outlet – Bloomberg News. Take a wild guess as to who owns it.
When the big-spending billionaire announced he was running, the Washington Post wrote about the ethical challenges his news operation faced. “Bloomberg News will avoid investigating Mike Bloomberg during his presidential campaign,” went the headline on the story about double standards.
Bloomberg reporter Mark Niquette is on the boss beat. In case you had any doubts, 13 of his stories in a row had headlines beginning with the former mayor’s name. When incriminating stop-and-frisk audio of comments by Bloomberg was released, Niquette’s article tried to get past it. “Bloomberg Seeks to Move Past ‘Stop and Frisk’ Controversy,” the headline on his story told readers.
Another Niquette PR piece called Bloomberg either the “centrist alternative” or the “moderate alternative” in the race.
Thankfully, not all the media are flacking for Bloomberg. To its credit, The Washington Post reported Saturday that Bloomberg “for years has battled women’s allegations of profane, sexist comments.” The massive investigative piece detailed Bloomberg’s alleged offensive comments, workplace culture and lawsuits.
The Post reported: “The most high-profile case was from a former saleswoman. She sued Bloomberg personally as well as his company, alleging workplace discrimination. She alleged Bloomberg told her to ‘kill it’ when he learned she was pregnant. Bloomberg has denied her allegation under oath, and he reached a confidential settlement with the saleswoman.”
The newspaper added: “The Washington Post interviewed a former Bloomberg employee, David Zielenziger, who said he witnessed the conversation with the saleswoman. Zielenziger, who said he had not previously spoken publicly about the matter, said Bloomberg’s behavior toward the woman was ‘outrageous. I understood why she took offense.’”
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“Bloomberg declined an interview request,” reported the Post. He also won’t let people out of nondisclosure agreements so they can openly discuss the allegations.
Most of the liberal media that have been giving Bloomberg a hard time are farther to the left than The Times and Post.
The Daily Beast slammed the candidate as if he were the second coming of President Trump. “Mike Bloomberg Can’t Hide How He Helped Terrorize Black People With Stop and Frisk Policing,” it headlined.
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The New Republic called Bloomberg’s governing style “Polite Authoritarianism.” And left-wing outlets from HuffPost to The Intercept criticized his campaign.
Lefty Salon sounded positively conservative criticizing the press, asking, “Why is the media giving Mike Bloomberg a free pass?” The piece complained that “The corporate media is happy taking his ad money, but they’re not holding him accountable.”
I’m agreeing with Salon, which might be a sign of the apocalypse. Welcome to Election 2020.
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