Will the Fake News Ever Get It Right?

Mike Weisser
4 min readJan 29, 2022


Oh boy! Those lousy poll numbers for Joe just keep piling up. And tonight, just to rub more salt in the wounds, the Trumpster is holding another mega-rally in Texas which will no doubt attract a gazillion fans a prove that the 45th President will easily become Number 47 in 2024.

Okay. Now ready for reality instead of the nonsense that the fake news media has kept pushing out about Joe since the beginning of his term?

The reality goes like this: Joe — 43, Trump — 33, Someone else — 16.

The reality is also this: Joe — 41, DeSantis — 33, Someone else — 18.

Those are the percentages of roughly 1,000 likely voters who were asked how they would vote if the 2024 Presidential election was held today. The poll was conducted by Marquette University,

Incidentally, Marquette is rated A/B by the 538 organization, which means it’s a serious poll.

The same poll asked respondents whether they wanted Trump to run again in 2024, and 70 percent said ‘no.’ These respondents were also asked how much they trusted government and 18 percent said, ‘all the time,’ 63 percent said, ‘some of the time’ and 17 percent said, ‘none of the time.

Finally, when the people who answered the poll were asked to identify their party affiliation, the respondents split almost equally between one-third for the GOP, one-third for the Democrats and one-third called themselves ‘independents’ with no affiliation given at all.

Now you would think that it would be impossible for any legitimate polling operation to come up with results like the results published by Marquette, given how the fake news media has been talking all year long about Joe’s lousy poll numbers, the supposed hammerlock that Trump still has on the GOP and why everyone thinks the government is no good. You would think.

I have just finished reading Marshall McLuhan’s classic Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man, which was first published in 1964, and was a brilliant effort to explain how electronic communication had changed the spread of ideas once every home in America had a radio and TV. I have decided to try and write a similar book about what we think and understand now that just about every American home has a laptop, a web-enabled TV, or a handheld phone.

In fact, until yesterday I kept thinking that perhaps it was just too soon and too early to try and figure out how digital communications shape the way we think and believe. But the publication of the Marquette poll, and the degree to which it is at such variance with the mainstream (i.e., fake news) media forced me to change my mind.

Maybe the book I will end up producing will be wrong, maybe it will be ignored, maybe the impact of digital media is still too vague and uncertain for us to understand what it really means.

Know what? I don’t care. All I want to do is raise some questions about what all those Generation X-ers and snot-nosed Millennials think they are proving when they sit down every day and some up with the latest narrative to help promote skin creams or exercise machines, whether those narratives have any reality behind them at all.

The problem with McLuhan’s book is that it was written at a time when the government still imposed rigorous standards for how many minutes each television news show had to spend actually reporting the news. And if nothing else, this regulatory environment required the media to at least pretend that there was a difference between what they said had happened, as opposed to what they were trying to sell.

That standard has disappeared. Yesterday I watched the first 30 minutes of CNN’s noon report hosted by John King. Eighteen minutes was devoted to a discussion between King and three so-called political ‘experts,’ none of whom were old enough to be around when the Berlin Wall was built, or maybe when it was torn down. Fourteen minutes was devoted to ads for dog food, some kind of over-the-counter application for psoriasis, a pill to take for headaches and an adult diaper to keep you high and dry. The ad for the psoriasis cream was repeated twice.

How long will it be until the news media not only gives advertisers as much or more time to huckster the junk they want you to buy, but also lets those same advertisers create the content that is referred to as ‘the news?’

Think I’m kidding? I’m not.