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Tuesday, July 18, 2017
CNS Blogger Is An Even Worse Media Critic Than His MRC Co-Workers

It turns out that there are media critics employed by the Media Research Center even worse at their jobs than Tim Graham. Like Craig Bannister, whose main job is to be the PR guy for MRC "news" division but also blogs at CNS.

Bannister writes in a July 5 CNS blog post (needless and excessive bolding and underlining are his):

CNN’s Will Ripley empathizes with North Korea’s side of things in two short videos on, suggesting the communist country is misunderstood and mistreated by the U.S.

In “What it's really like to be inside North Korea,” CNN’s Will Ripley – who has visited North Korea 11 times – portrays the country as a place where leaders are viewed in “the highest possible esteem,” not as the outside world stereotypes them:

"This is a society that is built around its leadership; they hold their leaders up to the highest possible esteem. And, that is very much in contrast to the view from the outside world, that North Korea is erratic, unpredictable and moving on a dangerous path as they continue to nuclearize.”

Ripley describes North Korea’s capital, Pyongyang, as a city with an “increasingly modern skyline” filled with music and celebration, day and night:

“You hear music playing on loudspeakers throughout the city all day. In the morning to wake people up, in the evening to put them to bed at night. There is patriotic music, people are marching, they’re practicing for these huge mass celebrations that they often do for national holidays or to celebrate the achievements of their leader.”

What’s more, all North Koreans say they have complete confidence in their leader, Kim Jong-un, who has “supreme power”:

“North Korea is one the only places in the world where, no matter who you ask, at least publicly, you will never hear political dissent, everybody will say they are one hundred percent behind their supreme leader.

Of course, that isn't what Ripley did at all. (The fact that Bannister refused to link to Ripley's video is a big sign that he knows he's not telling the truth about Ripley.) Ripley's not sympathizing with North Korea or trying to make, as Bannister claims; he's trying to explain what life is like there and how it is "radically different" from the rest of the world.

Bannister also engages in some deceptive editing. After Ripley's statement that "everybody will say they are one hundred percent behind their supreme leader," Ripley added: "Given that Kim Jong Un has absolute power in this country, what else would they say?"

That's clearly not a statement of sympathy toward North Korea's leadership nor an assertion that North Koreans have "complete confidence" in Kim -- but theh truth would have interfered with Bannister's dishonest attack on Ripley, so it had to go.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:57 PM EDT

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