RUSH: Now, I mentioned that I had read a piece at the Power Line blog, Steven Hayward. His piece was about a book written by Daniel Boorstin. It’s actually 1961. I said 1992. I was wrong. That’s the most recent publication. When I went to buy the e-book version, that was the date. Boorstin’s book is actually from 1961. It’s called The Image: A Guide to Pseudo-Events in America. We’ve just been through one, and we are still in it: A pseudo-event, a manufactured crisis, a faux news story. 1961.
The title of the book is The Image: A Guide to Pseudo-Events in America. A pseudo-event is defined in the book “as not merely a fact or real event that happened, but a fact or event that is made into ‘news’ of a certain kind by a deliberate and artificial process.” There are at least three identifiable characteristics of pseudo-event or of a manufactured crisis or of a phony, faux news story. The dynamics of a pseudo-event is that you need to create a controversy. The event “is not spontaneous.” It’s made to look spontaneous, but it isn’t.
The event “comes about because someone has planned, planted, or incited it. Typically[,] it is not a train wreck or an earthquake, but an interview.” It can be an image. “It is planted primarily … for the immediate purpose of being reported or reproduced. Therefore, its occurrence is arranged for the convenience of the reporting or reproducing media. Its success is measured by how widely it is reported.” Another example of this would be the sound bite, the montages that we had, the montages of 25 different media people all referring to Dick Cheney as having “gravitas.”
These are planned, orchestrated, planted pseudo-events, and they have an origin. The third identifiable characteristic: “‘Its relation to the underlying reality of the situation is ambiguous. Its interest arises largely from the very ambiguity… Without some of this ambiguity a pseudo-event cannot be very interesting.’ In the present case, we know that ‘child separation’ from illegal immigrant adults has been going on for a long time,” Mr. Hayward adroitly and accurately points out here.
We know that the child separation from illegal immigrant adults has been worse. It’s been happening at a larger scale in the past than in the present moment. So, given that it isn’t new, and given that it was probably worse three, four, five years ago, how did this story suddenly arrive? “How did this story suddenly blow up the way it did just now?” Where did it “come from?” It doesn’t come from the reporting of news.
It doesn’t come from a reporter running around seeing something and telling everybody else what he or she saw. This is the result of somebody deciding strategically to take out a hit piece on Donald Trump and the Republicans for whatever reason — to cover up the good news out of North Korea, to cover up the good news of the inspector general report.
Well, “good news.” It’s bad news for Democrats. To cover up the economy in general, change the subject. Something like that could be the reason. The overall reason is to get Trump. “How did this story suddenly blow up the way it did just now? Since the media hadn’t yet toured” when the story blew up “any detention facilities at the border…” The media had not been there. “So where did those first pictures of kids in cages (which turned out to be from 2014) come from?”
RUSH: Okay. This story “‘is not spontaneous, but comes about because someone has planned, planted, or incited it. … It is planted primarily … for the immediate purpose of being reported or reproduced.’ … [T]he media hadn’t yet toured any detention facilities at the border” prior to reporting this story, so somebody got this going. It happened with photos that were reported to be taken recently. They actually were photos from 2014.
Now, one of the theories is that this is beginning to happen because of 24-hour cable news, that there’s just not enough naturally occurring news to fill 24 hours and so the media has to go out there and make some. To a certain extent, that’s true. I mean, polling data is now used to make news, not reflect public opinion. They report it in an attempt to influence what people think. But in this case, the overriding objective behind everything the media’s doing is get rid of Donald Trump.
Overturn the 2016 election. Participate in (whatever you want to call it) a silent coup to reverse the election result, and they have failed in every attempt. As their failures mount up, so does their frustration and anger, and it’s boiling over now. So they are grasping at straws, and they are abandoning their own strategery. Trump is outsmarting them at every step of the way here, and they don’t even know it yet in terms of supposing them for who they really are. But what I found intriguing about this was…
Remember my admonition not to think of history in terms of the day you were born? You know, most people do. Most people’s historical perspective begins with the year of their birth, when they’re alive. That’s what matters: What’s happening when they are alive. Well, a whole lot of stuff happened before you were born and it also matters. Here we are all the way back to 1961 and Daniel J. Boorstin is predicting the direction the news media is going based on things already in place back then.
And there wasn’t 24-hour news in ’61. There were still only the three networks. So it is undeniably manufactured. It’s undeniably faux. It’s undeniably created and planted, but then reported on as though it is genuine. Stormy Daniels, same thing. Oh, by the way, her lawyer? Heard about this? Her latest gig is in East Cape Girardeau, Illinois. It’s a genuine backwater, folks. He’s abandoned her, and he’s showed up at the border now trying to get illegal alien clients, the Avenatti guy.
RUSH: Now, I’m getting some emails. “Rush, pictures have always been influential.” I know that. I’m not saying there’s anything unique about that. It is the planting — the discovery and the planting — of pictures either in an interview or in a single news story that the rest of the media picks up on, but it’s all strategized now. The creation of a news story is part of the way the media operates.