A top liberal political pundit says major media outlets in the United States are using President Trump and his supporters to drive up interest and money.
During an interview released on Wednesday with podcast host Joe Rogan, Intercept co-founder Glenn Greenwald accused media outlets of overplaying the severity of domestic terrorist threats, claiming it enriches their institutions while exerting “power and control” over political conversations through moderation and censorship of wrongthink.
“So many institutions are profiting, I don’t just mean financially … from elevating fear levels over right-wing fascism, over white supremacists, domestic terrorism, whatever you want to call it,” Greenwald said. “And obviously, it doesn’t take a lot of insight to observe that historically, the way you consolidate your power is if you can put people in fear.”
1556 w/Glenn Greenwald: https://open.spotify.com/episode/6ryXHBRMkkIlAK2vCtAE2v
Greenwald said by making Trump and his supporters a permanent “existential threat” to the country, media outlets and social media companies have wrestled power from anyone who disagrees while directing and moderate conversations about politics and culture on the internet.
“Obviously, after 9/11, that was the strategy of the Bush-Cheney administration, it’s the way they consolidated a lot of power by elevating people’s perceptions way beyond what was real of the threat of Islamic terrorism to allow them to do essentially everything they did,” he continued. “The same exact thing is happening now.”
Greenwald said Trump saved the livelihood of many media members who were struggling to retain viewership during the relatively tranquil years of President Barack Obama’s tenure.
“People in media have had their careers saved,” Greenwald said. “I know cable hosts who were on the verge of being fired because nobody was f—ing listening to their dumb shows [in 2015], when all they were doing was talking about was how great Obama was because who wants to listen to that?”
The left-leaning journalist said Trump was a “godsend” to embattled media organizations because he “enabled” outlets such as the New York Times and MSNBC to uncover a new, much-needed traffic source built on an ever-persistent threat of violence and discord.
Greenwald warned both media outlets and social media companies could censor basic criticism of Joe Biden under the justification that it could serve potential foreign adversaries such as Russia.
“[The media] are going to continue to say, not maybe Trump or at least his movement, still pose this existential threat,” Greenwald said. “You know, they’re out there plotting to kill people and impose white supremacy, and it’s not that it’s not true, it’s not like there’s not a kernel of truth to it, there are people doing that, but they’re going to inflate it wildly so that any questioning of Joe Biden, even with Trump’s out of the picture, is still going to be depicted as endangering American liberty, as helping fascism, as serving the agenda of the Kremlin, and the need for censorship, as a result, is going to be accepted by more and more people because of that fear.”