Drew's Receipts: Media Failures of the Week, July 15

July 15, 2023

Florida is the worst state, facts be damned. We'll never know who brought cocaine into Hunter Biden's White House. Asians are the newest non-white face of white supremacy. And stop saying the economy isn't great!

Those were mainstream media narratives in the last week or so. As usual, I’ve got the receipts.

"We got it wrong."

"More People Actually Moved Out of Florida than New York or California in 2021" was briefly a headline on a prominent news site.

Then, Insider, formerly Business Insider, was forced to admit it had the numbers exactly backwards. Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis's freedom-loving approach to the COVID-19 pandemic actually helped make Florida the fastest growing U.S. state for the past two years.

"We Got it Wrong," read the corrected headline.

Give credit to Insider. CBS's 60 Minutes still won't acknowledge it was wrong about DeSantis’s handling of the pandemic.

"The leading theory remains that it was left by one of the hundreds of visitors"

After the Secret Service closed its investigation into who left a bag of cocaine in the White House, CNN scooped that it totally wasn't President Joe Biden's recovering crack addict son.

According to the report, which relied on two anonymous sources, "the leading theory remains that [the cocaine] was left by one of the hundreds of visitors who entered the West Wing that weekend for tours."

Not convinced? As the media have already explained: Back off!

"Militant co-conspirators with white conservatives."

"As the death of affirmative action showed, Asian American conservatives are active, militant co-conspirators with white conservatives," writer Promise Li argued in the Nation.

But we must be clear about one thing: Asian American anti–affirmative action activists have not been simply "used" by white activists and duped into this white supremacist policy. They are active, militant co-conspirators with white conservatives. They are building a key flank for the right wing across the nation, and the left must urgently recognize that right-wing politics precisely gain power by recruiting conservative ideologies among communities of color that overlap with, but retain distinct aspects from, white supremacy. ...

These Asian Americans are those who feel most at ease with the paradigm that Claire Jean Kim observes in her theory of "racial triangulation," which characterizes how Asian Americans have long been recruited into functioning as a "model minority" to reinforce the structural oppression of Black people and the privilege of white people. Despite the fact that they cannot fully assimilate into whiteness, certain Asian Americans do enjoy privileges in Kim’s framework. Indeed, as she wrote in The Nation, "It is the convergence of this nascent, conservative Chinese immigrant nationalism with an older, conservative white nationalism that is driving anti–affirmative action politics today."

The media's big tent of white supremacy just keeps getting bigger.

"White House Takes a Victory Lap"

Joe Biden gloated after getting some of the best inflation numbers of his inflation-plagued presidency, and the media were here for it.

Adding context to the coverage would have just been a downer. So what if almost 7 in 10 Americans are unsatisfied with the economy and Biden's handling of it?

That’s enough media for now. See you next week.