Some mainstream anchors and media personalities from both sides of political spectrum bear the burden of responsibility for why Trump’s „fake news“ syntagm was so well received among American masses, not only among Trump’s who chanted it on rallies, but also among some of them who are strongly against him.
For years, they have been caught adjusting their arguments and beliefs to match the political narrative they were pushing.
Viewers recognized that many of these media personalities had no inherent values or actual political convictions but that they were merely adopting to a current situation and trying to justify political moves their side was making in any given moment.
One of the latest examples is Fox host Stuart Varney who has surprisingly become an active voice for government handouts.
In his recent interview with former Reagan economist Arthur Laffer he strongly defended Trump’s decision to give direct payments to many Americans.
After Laffer stated that he thinks it is a silly plan to give families a 1000 $ each, adding „It makes no sense whatsoever. It doesn’t lead to good outcomes. Believe me…“, Varney jumped to interrupt him.
„There are literally tens of millions people in this country who next week won’t get a paycheck. What are they gonna do? A government surely cannot just stand back. They gotta offer some help“, yelled Varney and after Laffer argued that it’s not compassion to give other’s peoples money, Varney interupted him again, saying; „Yes it is“.
There is nothing inherently wrong with Varney’s argumentation, it is a job of the government to help its citizens in need, however, Varney was strongly opposed to the idea of a government giving people money just a year back.
In December 2018 when a guest Felix Salmon, chief financial correspondent at Axios, said he is for universal basic income adding he thinks this is a great idea, Varney called him a socialist.
This is their exchange:
SALMON It happens in Alaska, Alaska is a Republican state, and they give everyone an unconditional check every year.
VARNEY: That’s from the dividend from the oil, it’s got nothing to do with universal basic income for heaven’s sake.
SALMON: It’s universal income.
VARNEY: Are you a socialist?
VARNEY: What are you?
VARNEY: Way left of center? Did you declare that when you came to America and became a citizen?
SALMON: They asked me if I had or had ever been a member of the Communist Party, and I had not.
VARNEY: And you had not.
SALMON: I had not.
VARNEY: So you’re off the hook.
VARNEY: You can be a socialist on television, but you don’t tell the immigration authorities about it.
SALMON: Now it’s too late now, I’m a citizen.
This example illustrates how some of the leading American media personalities have no core beliefs, but they change their arguments to suit current political circumstances.
Trump’ historic $2 trillion stimulus bill which includes direct payments to many Americans is a good thing and it should be supported, but this has revealed that Varney’s earlier arguments regarding costs of government handouts were nonsensical.
If the government with economy in shambles due to coronavirus pandemic could ensure trillions for the people, which Varney now supports, why then was he worried that programs like Yang’s UBI (giving everyone $1,000 a month) will bankrupt the USA.
If his worry about bankrupting America then, when economic state was much better, was really honest, why isn’t he worried now?
Varney can defend himself that this is an unprecedented situation, that government has to help people, but the fact remains that even before the pandemic there were many who were in need of help but back then he was not advocating that government should show compassion.