Blindly defending the pro-Trump propaganda outlet Sinclair Broadcasting, Trump advertises his ignorance once again.
Expanding on the Trump adage that he doesn’t know anything about anything, we can add the local news business to that long list of things that baffle him.
Once again rushing to defend his favorite local news propaganda outlet, Sinclair Broadcasting, which is being widely condemned for its latest move into Orwellian, pro-Trump programming, Trump made clear he’s clueless how the industry works.
Specifically, he seems to have no idea that lots of Sinclair stations dotted around the country air their programming from ABC, CBS, and NBC. The network may own the local stations, but it’s still in business with the networks to air shows in different markets.
That’s how the local television affiliate business has worked for more than half a century in this country. But somebody forgot to fill in Trump.
Because on Tuesday, he lashed out at the networks on Twitter and suggested they were afraid of “competition”:
The Fake News Networks, those that knowingly have a sick and biased AGENDA, are worried about the competition and quality of Sinclair Broadcast. The “Fakers” at CNN, NBC, ABC & CBS have done so much dishonest reporting that they should only be allowed to get awards for fiction!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) April 3, 2018
But again, Sinclair’s WHAM in Rochester, New York, for example, broadcasts ABC programming. So in that instance, ABC is not in “competition” with Sinclair, ABC is in business with Sinclair. And that pattern plays out all over the country.
It’s funny that Trump’s so clueless about the television business since, thanks to his time on “The Apprentice,” he clearly views himself as a television insider.
What’s made the pro-Trump network so controversial in recent is what it does with its slices of local programming during the day, especially local newscasts. There, Sinclair demands stations carry pro-Republican commentaries and stations basically deliver a Fox News Lite version of local news.
And that’s what Trump is defending as Sinclair continues to be denounced for its creepy decision to demand anchors attack their local news competitors by suggesting they might be peddling dishonesty.
However, at least one Sinclair station over the weekend refused to run the robotic commentary about “fake news”:
In response to the Sinclair message aired: "WMSN/FOX47 Madison did not air the Sinclair promotional announcement during our 9pm news this weekend. Rather, we stayed true to our commitment to provide our Madison area viewers local news, weather and sports of interest to them." pic.twitter.com/MdQ568cWrH
— FOX 47 Madison (@fox47madison) April 2, 2018
Last year, Trump’s FCC ripped up regulations that limited the number of local television stations a single company could own in the U.S.
Sinclair last year also made a $3.9 billion bid to acquire the Tribune Company. If allowed by regulators, the deal would put the company in control of 223 TV stations.
Combined, the stations would give Sinclair access to more than 70 percent of American households, including major market stations in New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago.
As usual, though, Trump has no idea how anything works.