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CNN lies about 68% of Americans waiting for Covid-19 vaccine to return to normality as lockdown gives MSM new lease on life

Helen Buyniski
Helen Buyniski

is an American journalist and political commentator at RT. Follow her on Twitter @velocirapture23

is an American journalist and political commentator at RT. Follow her on Twitter @velocirapture23

CNN lies about 68% of Americans waiting for Covid-19 vaccine to return to normality as lockdown gives MSM new lease on life
Mainstream media is running wild during the US coronavirus lockdown with the kind of distorted “facts” that would normally be ignored but have developed staying power due to pandemic-induced vulnerabilities in its audience.

More than two-thirds of Americans are determined to hide out in their homes until a Covid-19 vaccine comes along. Or so CNN appeared to claim in a Tuesday headline, declaring “68 percent of Americans say a vaccine is needed before returning to normal life.” Citing a Gallup poll, the piece implied that until a vaccine is rolled out for the pandemic that has upended the lives of people around the world, most Americans are content to shelter in place, working from home (if they’re lucky enough to be working at all) and absorbing reality through the mainstream media.

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The actual Gallup poll the article cited said no such thing. “Availability of a vaccine to prevent Covid-19” was merely one item on a list of factors that respondents could rate as “very,” “somewhat,” or “not too important” as conditions for returning to their pre-pandemic routines. Indeed, a poll taken the previous week that specifically asked how many respondents would only return to normal if there was a vaccine found just 12 percent of respondents felt they needed the still-hypothetical jab to resume their lives.

More important than a vaccine that is expected to take over a year to come to market in Gallup’s poll were “mandatory quarantine for anyone testing positive with Covid-19” (“very important” for 80 percent of respondents) and “improved medical therapies to treat Covid-19” (“very important” for 77 percent). Even a “significant reduction” in virus-related deaths (73 percent) outstripped the vaccine. Yet this benchmark was used as the headline by CNN.

Sure, the decision could have been motivated by the network’s heavy support by pharmaceutical companies. Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders called out CNN during a primary debate for taking drug company money in a direct conflict of interest, and vaccine safety advocate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. has claimed 70 percent of ad dollars for news networks come from pharmaceuticals during non-election years.

However, given the abysmal track record of previous efforts to develop a vaccine for other coronaviruses, like SARS, there’s no guarantee a Covid-19 shot will ever come on the market. Instead, it’s more likely CNN’s motive in portraying Americans as willing to hide in their homes for another year in the hope of a pharmaceutical savior that may never come is an opportunistic attempt to prey on the newfound vulnerabilities of a pandemic-panicked population.

Everyone makes mistakes, of course, but CNN and its mainstream media ilk have been making an awful lot of them during the coronavirus pandemic, and they’ve all erred in the direction of presenting the virus as a terrifying killer that threatens all populations who dare peek their heads out of their windows (except for the prescribed hour of clapping, of course). CBS was caught re-using the same footage of an Italian hospital overwhelmed by coronavirus-stricken patients twice to illustrate New York hospitals supposedly buckling under the weight of the epidemic, even after the network was caught the first time and excoriated on social media. A Project Veritas exposé last week implied they hadn’t learned their lesson, claiming the network had allegedly staged a long line of patients waiting for coronavirus testing at a Michigan facility, which CBS was quick to blame. Many outlets continued to predict apocalyptic death numbers for the country long after it was apparent that the early estimates were significantly overblown.

It’s not like there haven’t been plenty of sensational Covid-19 stories in the US, which has long been the epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic. Between U-Haul trucks filled with decomposing bodies parked outside a Brooklyn funeral home and New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s appalling order mandating contagious Covid-19 patients be admitted to nursing homes where they’d - in his own words - infect the tenants “like fire through dry grass,” tales of suffering inflicted by the virus abound. Covid-19 has contributed to over 81,000 deaths as of Tuesday, according to data collected by Johns Hopkins University. But it never seems to be enough - so many of the deaths are in nursing home patients or those with comorbid conditions that the media seems compelled to dig for ever more lurid and shocking narratives.

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The Covid-19 lockdowns have given the media establishment something it hasn’t had for years - a captive audience. It isn’t about to let something like that go, even as states begin to loosen restrictions and permit the housebound to return to work. Pre-virus, the media establishment enjoyed near-record low approval ratings, with just 41 percent claiming to trust mainstream outlets in 2019. But in the midst of the uncertainty caused by the virus - which has put over 33 million Americans out of work and disrupted the lives of millions more - the certainty and familiarity those outlets provide has shored up their falling stock. Some 57 percent of respondents to a Pew Research poll conducted last month said cable news was doing an “excellent” or “good” job covering the pandemic, while a whopping 68 percent approved of network television coverage. Given the low ratings they enjoy during business as usual, neither CNN nor any other mainstream outlet is going to risk letting their newly-loyal audience return to reality - not when they can keep them at home waiting for a vaccine for another year. For a media that thrives on fear, the best kind of customer is one who’s glued to the couch, terrified of the virus lurking just outside their door.

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The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.

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