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CNN is Back to the Old Biases

CNN is Back to the Old Biases

In recent months, I have been following the new CNN owners and their pledge to restore fair and balanced news to the left-leaning network.  While they talked about getting back to more traditional news reporting (real journalism), their motives may have been more pecuniary than noble. 

The once dominant news platform, CNN ratings descended into the proverbial toilet.  It seems their audience was being stripped way on the right and left by FOX and MSNBC, respectively.  The once self-proclaimed “most trusted name in news” fell to a distant third place among cable news services.

The new management team seemed to be moving in the right direction – literally and figuratively.  They dumped such hardcore lefties as a media critic Brian Stelter, White House correspondent John Harwood and the morning team of John Berman and Briana Keilar.  Don Lemon got demoted from his own primetime evening show to one of three co-anchors in the early morning slot.

More recently, the boys at the top of CNN seem to have reverted to the old placate-the-left format.  Recently, they hired two of America’s most prominent Trump hating Republicans (or is it former Republicans?) – former Congressman Adam Kinzinger and gadfly former Congressman Joe Walsh.  Both were Republican legislators who not only broke with Trump but became part of the cadre of false-flag Republicans who attacked the GOP brand and grassroots voters.

Personally, I think hiring them was a bad move for CNN.  Just as Trump seems to be moving into the political rearview mirror, CNN decides to hire two of his most vociferous critics.  Bringing Kinzinger and Walsh on board at this time seems to suggest that CNN’s effort to restore journalistic integrity and improve ratings is on hold.

CNN is continuing to use so-called documentary to sell left-wing propaganda.  They recently produced a hit job on former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani and a “special” selling the Democrats’ – and the January 6th Committee’s – version of the Capitol Hill riot.  In the many years, I have followed CNN, I have yet to see one of their documentaries that reflected favorably on the GOP or conservatives.

But giving Kinzinger and Walsh a platform to continue to spew their anti-Republican and anti-conservative rhetoric – and running endless left-oriented specials — are not the only indications that CNN’s shift to the center may be coming to an end.  It is also what is not happening.

The replacement of the hardcore left-wing talent– and the even harder core folks in the back offices –seems to have come to a halt.  As long as Jim Acosta, John Avlon, and discredited FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe are still the faces and voices of CNN, the talk about getting CNN back into the real news business will lack credibility. 

Don Lemon’s replacement in the evening – Alysin Camerota and Laura Coates — are presenting issues with the same leftward spin – and the same panels of left-wing contributors — as Lemon.

Since it is safe to assume that the bosses at CNN monitor ratings like an emergency room physician monitors heart beats, the sudden reversal back to the old CNN may mean the new approach is not improving the ratings.  Perhaps they cannot draw viewers from the FOX News that leans right — and has more viewers than CNN and MSNBC combined.  In fact, Newsmax may be taking on more FOX viewers than CNN. 

That leaves them one option – try to strip off some of the MSNBC audience.  In my opinion, that would be more of a challenge than going after FOX.  The MSNBC audience is composed of the most radical of the hardcore left.  If there is any political cultism in America, you are likely to find it at MSNBC.  As far as CNN taking MSNBC viewers, the latter has a much smaller pool of viewers from which to draw – and they are less interested in education than reinforcement of their extreme political views and narratives.

It will take time to know if my observation is the long-term outlook for CNN or a temporary course adjustment.  For the sake of television journalism, I am hoping for the latter.

So, there ‘tis.

About The Author

Larry Horist

So,there‘tis… The opinions, perspectives and analyses of Larry Horist Larry Horist is a businessman, conservative writer and political strategist with an extensive background in economics and public policy. Clients of his consulting firm have included such conservative icons as Steve Forbes and Milton Friedman. He has served as a consultant to the Nixon White House and travelled the country as a spokesman for President Reagan’s economic reforms. He has testified as an expert witness before numerous legislative bodies, including the U. S. Congress. Horist has lectured and taught courses at numerous colleges and universities, including Harvard, Northwestern, DePaul universities, Hope College and his alma mater, Knox College. He has been a guest on hundreds of public affairs talk shows, and hosted his own program, “Chicago In Sight,” on WIND radio. Horist was a one-time candidate for mayor of Chicago and served as Executive Director of the City Club of Chicago, where he led a successful two-year campaign to save the historic Chicago Theatre from the wrecking ball. An award-winning debater, his insightful and sometimes controversial commentaries appear frequently on the editorial pages of newspapers across the nation. He is praised by readers for his style, substance and sense of humor. According to one reader, Horist is the “new Charles Krauthammer.” He is actively semi-retired in Boca Raton, Florida where he devotes his time to writing. So, there ‘tis is Horist’s signature sign off.

22 Comments

  1. bob

    It’s no surprise that cryin’ , azzwipe , worthless , liberal jism eating , butt plug accepting , kneepad wearing , RINO Adam Kinzinger ended up at FAKE and TRASHY cnn !!!!!! Everyone knew it , and he proved it , that Kinzinger was a DISGRACE to the Republican Party !!!!!!

    Reply
    • Mitch

      Bob tell us how you really feel. LOL.

      Reply
  2. Chuck

    I don’t see you saying anything about Faux news. It isn’t even news, merely opinion by a bunch of knuckle draggers that are followed by the mouth-breathing bozo that wrote the preceding comment

    Reply
    • pcwalt

      Wow. How persuasive! and how filled with supporting evidence!

      Reply
    • Mitch

      Suck it up buttercup. He told the truth So go drag your own knuckles you fool

      Reply
  3. Tom

    I am not a CNN watcher so I am not familiar with any of the personalities mentioned, except Camerota. TV news is all about ratings. It would appear that CNN needs to solve the ratings equation for their company and find/ or re-invent their brand. I am a bit surprised by Alysin Camerota leaning left now, as I think I remember her on FOX a long time ago, but I guess money and a prime time spot might cause a lot of people to change. I thought she generally leaned slightly right. CNN is owned by Warner Bros. Discovery, NASDAQ WBD is their ticker symbol. WBD was formed after the spin-off of WarnerMedia by AT&T, and its merger with Discovery, Inc. on April 8, 2022. Since then, their stock price has been on a downward slide from a high of 25 to a low of 9.17. Pretty much, anything AT&T touches after the 1975 Judge Green decision to break up “Ma Bell” has turned to crap and needs to be spun off to find their soul again. Just ask Lenovo, Lucent, Cingular, AT&T Federal Systems, Direct TV, Time Warner, etc.

    AT&T knows the mechanics of communications very well, it was a sanctioned monopoly for decades going all the way back to the time they installed a brand new communications system for a rising German political star known as Adolf Hitler. And you may not realize it, but if you saw the movie “The Hunt for Red October” you saw AT&T’s work when the Russians were trying to avoid “the American nets” which were the SOSUS passive submarine detection system developed by AT&T/Bell Labs – I was an engineer on that program. And in old B&W movies you heard AT&T if you noticed in the after movie credits it said, “Sound by Western Electric” which is the same division that built your switching stations for your corded phone when you were young. And you may not realize this but when you watch HBO, you are watching AT&T’s latest soon to be victim. Just watch John Oliver’s show called “Last Week Tonight, With John Oliver”, another liberal show. T-Mobile does not know how lucky they were when their merger with AT&T was not approved. They escaped death and probably do not realize it.

    But while AT&T knows the mechanics of communications; AT&T does not know the dynamics and intricacies of how to communicate, which is why you see the shift to acquiring media companies, especially after the Lucent debacle where Alcatel SA of France bought Lucent, and became Alcatel-Lucent. AT&T since the 1980’s has been a breeder of toxic management, poor decisions, and an attitude “not invented by us” where listening and expressing customer views was not as important as espousing your up-management’s view and telling the customer what they need rather than listen to what they want. As the manager, I will never forget the meeting we had where we were told by our boss, “If they won’t buy our equipment (Navy liked Ratheon ideas and equipment better), then we will ECP (Engineering Change Proposal) them to death. In plain English that means if our Navy customer will not buy our new expensive equipment then we will force them into endless upgrades and change proposals to make money and keep out Ratheon as long as we can. This was a typical attitude in the top levels of AT&T and it flowed down to both divisions I worked for, Western Electric, and Federal Systems.

    So it does not surprise me that CNN is a bit lost right now and having to figure out its brand, and literally who they are. And not helping matters is that they report to their big boss, Zaslav, who has had plenty of exposure to AT&T via AT&T’s Warnermedia Co., and he hired Chris Licht as head of CNN, following the ouster of Jeff Zucker earlier this year. Licht is a former executive producer of CBS’s “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert,” which is a left leaning show. So what you have is CNN is run by a former AT&T influenced CEO who has been exposed to copious quantities of toxicity and poor decision making who chucked one liberal named Zucker and has hired a closet liberal named Licht who’s big claim to fame is the liberal show “CBS’s “The Late Show with Stephen Colber” with the mission that Licht to create a show that both Democrats and Republicans can both be represented. Sound like a good idea. The only problem is he does not realize that both parties already have their favorite media shows which will make it very hard to steal viewers from. Another poor decision that he was groomed for a long time ago.

    So its no wonder that CNN is returning to its left wing roots.

    Reply
  4. Mike f

    Larry, you are such a confused man, it’s really tough to respond to you. Your “attack” on Kinzinger is totally unwarranted. Your cluelessness on him is really telling-he is neither ant-republican or anti-conservative. He is very anti-trump, totally warranted since trump is the worst president in at least 100 years (Harding-another republican may give him a run for that title). Trump was never popular with the majority of Americans and putting him in the rear view mirror (which clearly is what Kinzinger is trying to do) will benefit the Republican Party in the long run-but you appear too dense to realize that. Enough about Adam. You also are confused (surprise!) about the news presented on CNN. It appears to be left-leaning from your perspective, but you are unable to see anything wrong with any right wing figures (at least nothing that you will go to the bank with-you are quasi anti-trump due to the fact that you realize he is unlikely to ever be elected, but if he is the candidate with an “R” next to his name you will gladly vote for him-No scruples on your part…). Bottom line your opinion in that matter is more than suspect. Unfortunately the US has gotten more polarized in the last 30 years, so the left and right leaning news stations are not going to win the popularity contest for viewers on cable, middle of the road viewers like myself are more apt to follow the abc, cbs news shows than the cable news…. So there tis…

    Reply
    • Theodore

      If you think ABC (which is just as far left leaning as CNN) or NBC (Which isn’t much better) then you are about as middle-of-the-road as AOC herself.

      Reply
      • Frank stetson

        Most assessments put nvc and abc as leanjng left whereas cnn is solid left. Fox is extreme right. I use media bias/ fact check.

        I aM guessing if one fonds all three as far left; you are far right.

        Reply
    • larry Horist

      Mike f …Once again you speak from bias and ignorance. Initially, both Kinzinger and Cheney were focused on Trump. However, once they accepted Pelosi’s invitation to serve on her bogus Committee, they expanded their attack on Republican leaders and the Party in general. They then joined the left-wing panels as false flaggers. Kinzinger has repudiated his Republican membership. Cheney not — although both have been tossed out by the GOP. I have one advantage over you in discussing Kinzinger. I have known him personally since he first ran for Congress. We both were active in the sane GOP circles. I doubt you know him personally because it is obvious you do not know him.

      And you talk ignorant trash. You say I am unable to see anything wrong with right-wing figures. You seem to have forgotten my commentaries on Roger Stone and Steve Bannnon. In at least three commentaries, I have been critical of Tucker Carlson. I have criticized those on the right who want to throw Ukraine under the Putin bus.

      I have often said I am a conservative first … and generally operate with in the GOP because it is the most compatible with my views — but not always a prefect match. Did you miss my recent reference to my serving as the campaign spokesperson and media advisor to the Black Democrat Mayor of Chicago. I am driven by issues. You seem to be driven by a need to attack no matter how ill informed you may be.

      And to call yourself a middle of the roader is utterly laughable — at least from what your write here. Apart from your position on the philosophic scale you are just a peddler of bs. You are the personification of that saying … better to remain silent and have folks think you are ignorant than to speak up and prove it.

      Reply
  5. frank stetson

    What a nice folksy piece for Larry’s nice folks. I bet they agree; one guy said: “How persuasive! and how filled with supporting evidence!” Hmm, I guess that IS a difference.

    Larry’s point is “The once dominant news platform, CNN ratings descended into the proverbial toilet,” decided to move to the center but has descended back to the left. OK.

    On the evidence, there is no doubt that amongst cable news, as Larry has told us, Fox is first, MSBNC second, and CNN is third. Fox is dominant, especially when you pull the weak from the herd. For 2022, for the money, Fox has 54% of the prime-time audience, CNN has 17%. However, MSNBC and CNN combined have 46% share, or within 8 points of FOX News. For day time, FOX has 52%, MSNBCNN has 48%, a 4-point spread. Dominate, but no where near the one-on-one differences.

    In media watching, FOX News is the fifth channel out there, well behind NBC – the leader, CBS, ABC, and FOX. Important it lost a point during the year, might have been people watching Yellowstone for their news :>) They would have lost more, FOX lost 14%, many went to FOX news for their entertainment and that lessened their loss (just kidding). They hold about 60% of the CBS number of viewers.

    MSNBC is three levels below FOX as the number 8 channel, with about 50% of FOX viewership. Compared to FOX’s 1% loss, they lost 22%. Rachel matters and will be able to ask for quite a large new salary for 2025. CNN is in the woods, number 21, lost 34 points, and has 60% of MSNBC viewership which means around 25% of FOX news.

    Thus, MSCBCNN has 75% of FOX viewership, even with tremendous losses. As in a Rachel return could save it all. In her worst day, she pulls 2.5M views and has been number one a few times. One has to imagine her return will beat 2.5M, at least for a bit. Her contract goes through 2024 and she basically can write her own ticket for return. I would gather it’s all about the success of her other projects as to her return, or not.

    So there’s the evidence, FOX is King, the other guys are failing, but together still represent a sizeable viewership in TV, and especially Cable News. They may change, but they are not disappearing….yet. They are down but not out. Fox has nowhere to go but down. I agree with Larry, it appears moving to the center did not profit CNN.

    https://variety.com/2022/tv/news/most-watched-channels-2022-tv-network-ratings-1235475170/

    What I would like to see on TV is debate. Public debate. Like the Buckley-Baldwin debate of 1965. Point, counterpoint on 60 minutes. That was some good stuff.

    I love the news, I enjoy analysis and opinion, but cable news blends it all, with very little hard news, and labels none of it so you must ferret out for yourself: news? Opinion? Or analysis? Not very good for me, I’ll take PBS and NPR thank you very much. But what I really hate is the echo chamber where one side bounces it’s ideas against the walls and smiles at what they hear. Even the famous “the five” is really 4 conservatives and one pussy liberal, not even close to point-counter point.

    IMO, there are all pussies not to debate; conservatives, liberals, and even failed-lawn-jockey Rand Paul.

    Same for Congress —- let them debate. Debate away.

    Enough of the echo chamber, let’s have it out: verbally.

    Reply
  6. Joseph S. Bruder

    Maybe CNN is leaning toward the side that doesn’t try to overthrow the government by force, creating fake electors, conspiring among themselves, and fomenting an insurrection. Or maybe they see that the week-long shit-show by Republicans is going to be the pattern in the House for the next two years, and they want to take advantage of that. Or maybe they see the criminality of the Trump administration coming to a head and see that their ratings will be better if they play more to a left-leaning audience.

    Or maybe they’re just tired of being a participant in the Republicans tearing down this country and want to help strengthen the country by honestly reporting what’s going on.

    Reply
    • frank stetson

      oh heck jsb: aren’t you just tired of newsentertainment? I mean lean is lean and news shouldn’t lean so they ain’t news. CNN = certainly not news. fact is they said “:heading to center” and now they aren’t. And the reason is like a bank robber: that’s where the money is! fox leans hard but has a captive audience, not many marquee conservative outlets and as bad as fox is on facts, it’s better than most of the rest. msnbc lost their marquee performer and the rest just repeat themselves and each other every hour on the hour. Larry is right, as hard right as some of fox is, they have more diverse opinions, more diverse stories, and more diverse people even. cnn was attempting to be more like fox, just to the left, but appears to have given that up.

      my point is that while fox has the lead, with good reason, it all sucks and I would like to see real news, actual condemnation of the lies, and some actual debate; enough of the echo chamber and enough of the lies.

      Reply
      • Tom

        One commentor in another post said CNN = Communist News Network.

        Reply
      • Joseph S. Bruder

        Truthfully, I don’t watch FOX or MSNBC or CNN or any other news on TV. I get my news by reading online. It’s much faster and I can check facts as I go along. But I do occasionally see clips online from those networks, or might tune in if there’s a speech or a hearing that I want to watch. I don’t last more than 30 seconds or so through FOX or Newsmax rants…

        Reply
        • larry Horist

          joseph S, Bruder … Since you only devote 30 seconds to FOX, you are totally unqualified to make any judgments about their reproting. If you were to make an objective analysis of their news, you would discover that FOX presents more legitimate point and counterpoint and CNN (which does have some balance) and MSNBC (which has no balance. I have challenged those who mindlessly attack FOX to do the same … but no one takes up the offer. So that fact that you opine about FOX when you admit you have not bases to do so makes you a rather arrogant and dishonest left-winger. And this is not the only proof you have provided.

          Reply
    • larry Horist

      Joseph S. Bruder … Or maybe the most likely “maybe” of all — that you are just full of shit. No mater what you opine … or Frank tries to prove … FOX remains in the lead against both CNN and MSNBC combined. Come on, Bruder. You must know that your biased speculation is nonsense.

      Reply
      • Frank stetson

        I did not try to prove anything different than that, but thanks for the shout out.

        Even when I agree with you, you have to snark.

        Reply
      • Joseph S. Bruder

        First of all, the reason you get insulted by writers is because you start every reply to someone who disgrees with you with an insult.

        Yes, I’ll agree that FOX News has a bigger share of mindless people in the country. That does not disprove what I said. The pendulum is swinging away from MAGA and Trumpism and authoritarianist conservative Republicans. I’m guessing that CNN sees that and wants to be on the upswing, not the downswing. CNN wants positive growth, FOX can expect negative growth.

        Now, go watch your local FOX affiliate so you know what to write about tomorrow. They’re all up in arms about finding some classified material discovered in a locked closet at Biden’s old think-tank, so I don’t doubt that you’re already half-way through comparing Biden’s mistake (which he owned up to, and immediately called the National Archives to retrieve the documents) to Trump intentionally stealing documents, misleading the government about having them, and storing them in a desk in his home office and a storage room next to the club pool. I’m sure you will find a way to equate the two, at least in your mind.

        Reply
        • larry Horist

          Joseph S. Bruder … You begin your first graph that is a provable lie. Then you call the viewers of the most popular cable TV network “mindless.” More of your left-wing arrogance.. You extend you ignorant arrogance by ASSUMING that I only watch FOX and take my commentaries from them. Fact is … I do not watch FOX very much. Since you obsessively troll this site for personal reasons — and especially my commentaries — you must have read of my dislike of Tucker Carlson and rebuttals to the anti-Ukraine commentary on FOX. So your attacks and characterizations of me are just more lies. Most of my commentaries are ether reaction to current events … mendacious reporting on MSNBC or CNN … or are subjects I raise on my own. And once again you describe a Larry Horist of your own invention — and even pretend to know what I will write about the Biden docs issue. (Incidentally, you will get to see my opinion on that subject in an upcoming commentary).
          Arrogance and ignorance is a dangerous combination — and you excel in both.

          Reply
  7. EUGEN

    LET US FACE IT, WHO WATCHES HATEFUL ”CNN’ MSNBC”’ AND ALL THESE OTHER LEFT LEANING MEDIAS. MUST BE EITHER BRAIN DEAD OR COMMUNIST LOVING. BUT MOST YOUNG PEOPLE HAVE NO IDEA WHAT IT IS LIKE TO LIVE UNDER COMMUNISM OR SOCIALISM . BECAUSE THEY NEVER FAUGHT IN A WAR, NEVER WENT HUNGRY, OR DID WITHOUT . THEY NEVER LEARNED HISTORY. THEY WILL HAVE A VERY RUDE AWAKENING.
    GOD FORBID, THE LEFT ,THE DEMOCRATS WILL WIN.WE LIVED THROUGH IT ALL, HOW CAN CITIZENS OF A FREE NATION HATE THEIR OWN COUNTRY. ???GUESS THEY ARE VERY DUMB, NOT TO APPRECIATE WHAT THEY HAVE.
    THEY LET ILLEGALS RUIN THIS GREAT COUNTRY, ALL THESE PEOPLE COME HERE BECAUSE WE HAVE THE GREATEST COUNTRY IN THE WORLD. SO STOP BAD MOUTHING EVERYTHING, STAND UP AND TAKE A STAND.
    BIDEN WANT’S TO GIVE AMNESTY TO 30.000 MORE ILLEGALS PER MONTH. WHERE DOES THIS LEAVE AMERICANS??? JOB WISE ETC PLUS THEY WILL GET WELFARE ETC FOR LIVE.

    Reply
  8. AC

    2023 on PBP begins where 2022 left off. Only the conservative probably Republican Party narrative has credence. Like ‘22, ‘21, 20, ‘19, and to its start PBP has stood firmly I the right wing camp. Saying one or another network “leans” right as of it delegitimizes that network as real journalism.
    Who is the arbiter in the case of journalism truth and integrity? Or for that matter, ask the same question regarding historians. Then, who is to be believed and trusted with providing education and learning? That means stating the news worthy events today free of bias and within objective historical context.
    In 2023 and following, we the consumers of information are not able to personally witness events in the moment. And, the times when events are televised in real time for viewing, that what is seen often needs translation. Our viewing the entire four days broadcast when Republicans were on full display with unsuccessful machinations choosing the Speaker. Looking on in disbelief as events transpired. An objective appraisal of the proceedings proved elusive. Given this event’s status as an historical anomaly, its meaning became subject to partisan bias in translation. That did not appear as a hurdle. Translations were presented by anyone handed a mic, news networks, night time comedians, and the usual propagators of misinformation.
    Who, out of the many news providers is the one source we can depend on? I
    No one source totally fills the requirements. Therefore, each of the several most known networks become my sources. Consuming the gamut from right to left covers reporting of information from the variety of perspectives out there. Way too many qualify as the way out sort , right and left. And, sifting through conspiracy theory proponents, doom sayers, fear& despair peddlers, and plain hate mongers is the task in gathering information, learning, and becoming educated. Always, keeping objectivity as my goal.
    While my being a consumer of news carried on multiple networks across the spectrum and of both sides in the social/ cultural/ political divide, my one data point shows no single network loyalty. The statistical analysis, who’s on first, does not satisfy or answer the central issue. Who, what, and which informational source reports with objectivity, intelligent research, relevant context, and integrity honoring others’ opinions.
    PBP occupies a place on the continuum on the right. For that, it’s commentaries get included as information for advisement. On par with FOX, CNN, NBC, and the others. Objectivity, context, and humane integrity. The right standing, as is PBP has issues. Its contributors fails the grade on each of the above three.
    2023 promises opportunities for mere writers to achieve real journalist status. Those self identifying journalists lacking integrity, objectivity, true context, and humane outlook are practicing hackery in the trade. ( Look up “hack” in a dictionary for its definition.)

    Iwith the information looked for

    Reply

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