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The Big Lie and the Two Party System

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The Big Lie — the claim that the 2020 presidential election was stolen from Donald Trump via massive voter fraud — is now a standard Republican talking point, and therefore the First Amendment requires the national media to broadcast it over and over again:

It’s a two-party system after all:

On one level it may not matter much that Chuck Todd et. al. now afford Republicans a national forum on which to constantly repeat the Big Lie, given that nobody actually watches these shows.

On another, however, this situation is symptomatic of a much larger problem, which is that the non-fascist media have to keep pretending that the Republican party isn’t now a proto-fascist authoritarian cult of personality, because if they stopped pretending they would have to dump their basic Both Sides frame.

That would require of them both some hard work and a little bit of courage to deal with the subsequent squeals of right wing outrage about mainstream media bias, so that’s not happening any time soon.

Chuck Todd et. al. defend themselves from these charges by claiming that they’re “debunking” these claims. But if you were to have climate change deniers on the teevee every single week while claiming to “debunk” their claims, what would you actually be accomplishing, other than validating the “some people say the earth is round others say its flat the truth no doubt lies somewhere in the middle” frame so beloved of the legacy media?

Meanwhile Trump is going to spew his mendacious garbage at CPAC this weekend, which will create lots more opportunities for the Respectable Media to continue to pretend that what’s happening in this country isn’t actually happening.

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