Today, the news is filled with reports of Kellyanne Conway and her assertion that the mainstream media didn't cover a terrorist massacre in Bowling Green, Kentucky during the Obama administration.
Media didn't cover it because it never happened. Conway pulled a cute little "mea culpa" before then putting the blame back on the press. And now media, Facebook, Twitter, and all else are filled with comments about it. And while everyone's laughing at it, make no mistake - that's exactly what was intended.
Call me a conspiracy theorist if you like, but while Conway's frightening, she's not stupid. Here's what this accomplished:
- Many people who approve of the Muslim ban aren't going to look beyond Conway's words. Why didn't I hear about this massacre? Because the press hushed it up!
- The people who already think the press is the problem now have more ammunition.
- In all the uproar about the so-called Bowling Green Massacre, what haven't you heard? How about looser sanctions toward Russia (you know, the folks who appear to have hacked the election), repeals of regulations that protect water around coal mines, less transparency from oil companies, and yes, that botched Yemen raid. What's making the news? Conway's apparent mistake about something that never happened.
And if you think that's far-fetched, remember this: Steve Bannon, the guy who's really in charge, has many years of experience with clickbait-and-switch. He knows exactly how to play an audience. He knows exactly how to get people to "look over here."
I have no doubt that Donald Trump's apparent lack of knowledge about Frederick Douglass was genuine.
But was Kellyanne Conway equally misinformed about the "Bowling Green Massacre"? I don't believe for a second that she was. This was cold and calculated, and worst of all, it seems to be working.