MSNBC host and former GOP congressman Joe Scarborough compared Sinclair Broadcasting Group to “state-run media for an autocrat” after it ran promos condemning “biased and false stories” pushed by other media outlets, likening it to “the Soviets.”
“We conservatives mocked forever the Soviets and the fact that the state would type out their scripts and they would read news scripts that were obviously repeated,” Scarborough said on Monday’s “Morning Joe.”
“Robots,” interjected co-host Mika Brzezinski.
“Yeah, like robots were reading them,” Scarborough said, then adding: “People will say, ‘Oh, look at the conservatives reading their scripts,’ [but] it’s actually got nothing to do with conservatives, it’s Trumpian and it does smack of … state-run media for an autocrat.”
The Hill added:
News anchors at Sinclair stations say in the promos, which went viral this weekend, that they are “concerned about the troubling trend of irresponsible, one-sided news stories plaguing our country.”
The Sinclair promos also warn of an “extremely dangerous” threat to democracy.
“The sharing of biased and false news has become all too common on social media,” their scripts read. “More alarming, national media outlets are publishing these same fake stories without checking facts first.”
“Morning Joe” guest Noah Rothman, the associate editor for Commentary Magazine, said that the promos look like “a hostage video.”
“There’s sort of a contradiction behind a local news conglomerate, right? I mean, it’s supposed to be something that’s very hyperlocal and as a result of that it’s connected to the local economy, the local flavor and then you have the sort of national imposition of values on it,” Rothman said.
“I’m not sure if this is very effective. That looked like a hostage video,” he continued. “When conservatives say, ‘Media bias is insidious,’ it’s because people who are engaging in it don’t think it exists.”
“It’s internal, it’s natural, it’s an inclination that’s shared by everybody around you so it’s cultural. It sort of exists in the ether. It’s not something that’s forced on you,” Rothman added.