No, John McCain, Criticism Of Press is Not ‘Suppression’

John McCain never won the presidency, but he’s winning the hearts of journalists who’ve been battered by Donald Trump of late.

“We need a free press. We must have it. It’s vital,” says the Vietnam vet and Arizona senator.

And we have it. Big-league.

Warning that dictators start by shutting down the press, McCain insisted that he doesn’t necessarily mean that President Trump is going to be a dictator. Just maybe. Gee, thanks.

We can always debate the criticisms of the D.C. press, as leveled by Trump lately, and many others before him. I mean, look at how many people in the field of journalism have come out and pointed their own finger at what’s going on. But does this man really not get the difference between criticizing and suppressing? Is the press above criticism?

Not calling on CNN is not “suppressing” CNN.

And, seriously, look around the world, where real “suppression” is taking place daily. The regime in Turkey closed all outlets and publications that had been negative, firing or imprisoning those journalists. In Chavez-era Venezuela, bombings and arson attacks on newsrooms and transmitters were the order of the day. When telling the truth can get you prosecuted, persecuted or killed, that’s suppression.

Trump’s tantrums are simply push-back. They know it. McCain knows it.

Doesn’t he remember his own run for president in 2008, when the media line was that it was unthinkable to elect someone so old, so unhealthy, and so-not Barack Obama? He was called “unfit for the office”.  Guess he forgave. Or forgot.

Weaponizing the DOJ against James Rosen and Sharyl Atkisson sounds more like “suppression” to me. That was Obama’s push-back. We talked about it, a lot. Did they? Not so much.

Where was the pearl-clutching then?

Because you know what else accompanies the emergence of a dictatorship? Fawning hagiographers and boot-licking propaganda. And people being told that it’s “hateful” or “dangerous” to speak against the government or pols.

We have seen that, not so long ago.

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