Fred Weinberg: Media Response to Coronavirus Has Been Shameful


I don’t hold myself out as an expert on public health. Nor am I an epidemiologist.

But I am an expert on media B.S., having been in the media at all levels from the smallest local weekly newspaper to network television starting when I was about 13. My current day job is CEO of the USA Radio Networks, which means that I am involved in the presentation of news and opinion every day.

I am ashamed of my industry’s actions and reactions to the COVID-19 coronavirus.

First of all, there is too much media. In and of itself that’s not a bad thing, but most of that media is simply amateurish, incompetent and lacking in any standards. And worst of all, much of it has become so politically crazed with Trump Derangement Syndrome that they are covering this virus in hopes that it will somehow militate against the re-election of the president.

The news media’s job is to report the news. Anything Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer have to say about the administration’s response to the virus isn’t news; it’s nonsense. These are the same people who criticize the president every day, but have no responsibility. Mitigating the effects of the virus is solely the job of the executive branch.

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All the blowhards in the House and the Senate have is a responsibility to fund the mitigation.

So, every time you hear Schumer or Pelosi flapping their pie holes, they have a political agenda. This means nothing when it comes to mitigating a pandemic.

Politics only adds to the confusion. There’s plenty of real news to report without bringing a political agenda to the party.

Then, there are the two bozos left in the race for the Democratic nomination.

Do you think the media's reaction to coronavirus has only made matters worse?

The 2020 election is going to be run by grown-ups. Most grown-ups have had some interaction with dementia — if for no other reason than our experience with our parents. Frankly, if you can look at Joe Biden and not see dementia, you have your eyes closed.

So when Biden looks into the TV camera and tells us what he will do when he is president, you have to ask two questions.

First, will he remember what he just said in half an hour? And, second, why doesn’t he remember the track record his administration had in the 2009 swine flu outbreak? The feds did approximately nothing. And the media was barely bothered when the thousandth American died. No travel restrictions, no serious efforts to involve the private sector. Would Biden have cut off travel with first China and then most of Europe?

Keep in mind that when President Trump did exactly that, the geniuses in the media called him racist and xenophobic.

And yet who knows how many Americans were not infected because of those actions.

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Trump also started a public-private partnership with America’s largest medical, retail and tech companies to augment the government’s reaction.

He even declared a national emergency.

The media — not to mention the Democrats — went berserk when he did that to build the wall on our southern border. Presumably, they won’t be as shrill this time.

Then, there are the Democrats’ efforts to find a way to wire around the Hyde Amendment, which prohibits public funding of abortions. Apparently, since this virus has limited effects on children, they wanted to kill a few babies with public money to make up for that.

I read, every morning, the Apple News feed on my iPad.

All I can say is that AT&T should be ashamed of its wholly owned subsidiary, CNN.

I really think that CNN would be happy to see an outbreak of the bubonic plague if it would cost the president the election. Its print product is pure garbage.

And CNN’s clown Don Lemon actually got into a shouting match recently with Ohio Gov. John Kasich who, believe it or not, was defending Trump — a man who he is not fond of.

Ultimately, money will decide the future.

The media is first and foremost a business. If Trump gets re-elected, that will send a strong message to the owners of the media and the political agenda will moderate.

It cannot happen soon enough.

The views expressed in this opinion article are those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by the owners of this website. If you are interested in contributing an Op-Ed to The Western Journal, you can learn about our submission guidelines and process here.

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Fred Weinberg is the publisher of the Penny Press, an online publication based in Reno, Nevada ( He also is the CEO of the USA Radio Networks and several companies which own or operate radio stations throughout the United States. He has spent 53 years in journalism at every level from small town weekly newspapers to television networks. He can be reached at You can subscribe, free, to the Penny Press weekly email on the website.