Beijing has lied about the coronavirus from the start, while here in the West our corporate media has actively and enthusiastically spread its lies to households across the free world. But now that news of China’s lies is beginning to seep out, will it make a difference? Will there even be corrections? Don’t count on it.
Even before reports on incinerators “working around the clock,” massive orders for urns, government bribes to keep mourners quiet, and total government censorship, China’s lies were obvious. Even before China concealed the outbreak, blamed the U.S. military, and expelled foreign reporters, their lies were obvious.
Their lies were so obvious because China is an authoritarian regime that history plainly documents killing and starving millions while lying about it to this day. The press should know this, and they do know this, yet still corporate news outlets unquestioningly repeat Beijing’s line.
Then it all got a little confusing Wednesday, when Bloomberg reported both that the United States leads China in coronavirus cases and that China is concealing cases and deaths inside the country.
“China has concealed the extent of the coronavirus outbreak in its country,” the latter story reads, “under-reporting both total cases and deaths it’s suffered from the disease, the U.S. intelligence community concluded in a classified report to the White House.”
And there it is. The news certainly checks out with what reporters could have confirmed if they’d actually been reporting this past month.
“We have people sending us a lot of material originating in Wuhan, especially, and also other places in China,” Marion Smith, executive director of the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation, told The Federalist. “Based on eyewitness accounts of situations in the hospitals and situations at the crematoria, and based on the evidence coming in, there’s many, many, many times the number of deaths than the official number. This is why last week, when China announced no new cases in Wuhan, we knew that was not true. … We have reports of folks in hospitals in Wuhan being told that they are not allowed to admit new coronavirus patients, and we have accounts that the individuals who pass away with coronavirus are not being tested prior to being sent to the crematorium.”
Wednesday’s corporate revelation appears to travel slow, though. Hours and multiple updates after its publication, Bloomberg’s coronavirus guide still claims in the opening paragraph that “cases in the United States now exceed those in China.” Two weeks ago, Bloomberg reported that Europe also had exceeded China’s cases.
No correction or editor’s note is attached to either article. No “without evidence” line — the one editors and reporters like to tack on to President Donald Trump’s every utterance to demonstrate their pious skepticism. Not even an asterisk. Think about that: Mark McGuire and Sammy Sosa get harsher treatment than China’s dictator.
Bloomberg News, notably, has a history of covering for Beijing and was allowed to keep its reporters in China when government authorities expelled The New York Times, Washington Post, and Wall Street Journal in March. Maybe the government was confident those reporters wouldn’t start checking in on their numbers, preferring to wait for their U.S. government sources to spoon feed it to them. No surprise. Michael Bloomberg’s fortune is deeply entangled with China (and he knows it).
But his company is not alone. CNN uncritically repeats China’s false statistics over and over again. NBC, MSNBC, BBC, The New York Times — the list goes on, all without corrections or updates.
The corporate media’s trumpeting of foreign propaganda is especially eager when it hurts the president they don’t like. Outlets like Vox and BuzzFeed relentlessly attack Trump for not taking the coronavirus seriously enough early enough, but rushed to edit their past coverage that had authoritatively declared coronavirus less dangerous than the common flu. Vox, The New York Times and their television peers declare the president’s use of “Wuhan coronavirus” racist, while editing and forgetting past coverage that used “Wuhan coronavirus” or explained why so many pandemics come from that country.
It’s not shocking. As the virus spread across the planet, and as Americans worked furiously to stave off a global depression, the corporate media made clear their top concern was that Trump was mean to their friend Peter. It’s a self-obsession thing: The story must be about them. But now the story really is about them. Will they have the guts to admit it?