By Calvin Freiburger
CNN airs deliberate “propaganda” and “manipulation” to bring about partisan goals, CNN technical director Charlie Chester admits in a series of undercover videos released this week by the conservative investigators of Project Veritas.
Project Veritas has released two reports highlighting two videos’ worth of candid remarks by Chester, which Mediaite reported, were obtained on a series of dates with a female Veritas journalist posing as a nurse, arranged through the dating app Tinder.
“Look what we did, we got Trump out. I am 100 percent going to say it, and I 100 percent believe that if it wasn’t for CNN, I don’t know that Trump would have got voted out … I came to CNN because I wanted to be a part of that,” Chester boasted. “(Trump’s) hand was shaking or whatever, I think. We brought in so many medical people to tell a story that was all speculation — that he was neurologically damaged, and he was losing it. He’s unfit to — you know, whatever. We were creating a story there that we didn’t know anything about. That’s what — I think that’s propaganda.”
By contrast, Chester asserted that President Joe Biden is “definitely” in good health, and CNN worked to enhance that impression via its selection of footage. “Showing him jogging is obviously deflection of his age and they’re trying to make it like, ‘Oh, I’m healthy’ (…) We would always show shots of him jogging and that (he’s) healthy, you know, and him in aviator shades. Like you paint him as a young geriatric.”
Chester went on to confirm that CNN “latch(ed) onto” COVID-19 stories to help “get Trump out of office” “without saying it,” but now because of “COVID fatigue” the network will make climate change its “next thing,” in the form of “constantly showing videos of decline in ice, and weather warming up, and like the effects it’s having on the economy.”
“That one’s got longevity. You know what I mean?” he continued. “Like there’s a definitive ending to the pandemic. It’ll taper off to a point that it’s not a problem anymore. Climate change can take years, so they’ll (CNN will) probably be able to milk that quite a bit,” because “fear really drives numbers (…) Which is why we constantly have the death toll on the side.”
Such decisions, he confirmed, come from CNN Worldwide president Jeff Zucker, who will occasionally call producers with demands such as, “There’s nothing that you’re doing right now that makes me want to stick, put the (COVID death toll) numbers back up, because that’s the most enticing thing that we had.”
“Any reporter on CNN — what they’re actually doing is they’re telling the person what to say … It’s always like leading them in a direction before they even open their mouths,” Chester added. “The only people that we (CNN) will let on the air, for the most part, are people that have a proven track record of taking the bait (…) I think there’s an art to manipulation … Inflection, saying things twice — there’s little subtleties to how to manipulate people … I mean, it’s enough to change the world, you know?”
“No one ever says those things out loud, but it’s obvious based on the amount of stories that we (CNN) do. The fact that we have a segment called ‘The Good Stuff,’ which is a feel-good thing, but it’s a dedicated moment at the end to almost be the ice cream to alleviate everything that you’ve been through. Something sweet to end it with because everything else is doom and gloom,” he said.
While Chester’s comments represent a rare admission of CNN’s bias, the network’s political goals have been apparent for years. Recent examples include an ostensible hard news report calling it “transphobic” to acknowledge that “transgender women” are actually men while calling “biological sex” a “disputed term”; hosts Chris Cuomo and Don Lemon agreeing that conservatives “need to be deprogrammed” like Nazis after World War II; and Zucker expressing a desire for his network to “go after” Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham while declaring “I do not believe that we should be covering” allegations against presidential son Hunter Biden.