George Graham

An Old Media Trick



“What do they mean, Hillary Clinton is a flawed candidate?”

Sandra looked puzzled, as she stood in the doorway to the den. I could hear muffled voices coming from the TV in the family room.

“She used the wrong computer,” I responded.


Sandra looked even more puzzled.

“When she was Secretary of State, Hillary didn’t use the official computer to send some official emails,” I said. “She used her Blackberry. I guess it was more convenient.”

“And that makes her flawed?”

Of course not.

So why are the TV pundits beating that old email drum to death? Why does the issue live on long after she was cleared by the FBI?

They are seeking any bad stuff they can dig up to “balance” the bad stuff constantly spewing out of Donald Trump, that’s why.

It’s an old trick.

Media folks know that controversy builds audiences, so they do everything they can to provoke and sustain controversy. They will tell you they are being “fair” by “providing both sides.” But what they are really doing is trying to create the impression of a “fight.”

If they told the truth, they would concede that Hillary is a totally qualified, decent candidate who has spent her life trying to help the poor and oppressed – especially women and children. And they would have to admit that Trump is a know-nothing bully, who is dangerously unstable, a liar and a cheat, who shouldn’t be allowed anywhere near the White House.

Of course, that kind of newscasting wouldn’t hold audiences for long. The cable TV stations need constant “controversy” to sustain viewers’ attention all day, every day.

Fortunately, there are other TV channels  for us to watch – those that show old movies, for example.  And that’s what we should all be doing between now and November.

About the author


I am a Jamaican-born writer who has lived and worked in Canada and the United States. I live in Lakeland, Florida with my wife, Sandra, our three cats and two dogs. I like to play golf and enjoy our garden, even though it's a lot of work. Since retiring from newspaper reporting I've written a few books. I also write a monthly column for