Megan Kelly got a promotion from Fox News to NBC because Donald Trump insulted her during an early Republican presidential debate. This promotion did not include an increase in wisdom. It merely gave her a larger audience for her to reveal her limitations. Her limitations are considerable.
Her latest bonehead move was to interview Alex Jones. This got her in trouble with NBC, because nobody is supposed to interview Jones. That would give him some degree of credibility. The mainstream media do not want to consider him as anyone who deserves credibility.
The mainstream media still believe that someone like Jones can get credibility only from the mainstream media. They still think it's 1995.
Her response was this: she thinks he is despicable. She said that his view of Sandy Hook as a hoax is revolting. That bought her a little time. But time will run out on the evening of June 18, when her interview is scheduled to be run.
Jones did what any sensible conservative should always do when interviewed by the mainstream media. He made a secret recording of the entire interview. He says he will release the entire interview on YouTube.
He says that he did not claim to believe the story that Sandy Hook was a hoax. He simply said that he had offered theories regarding Sandy Hook to his viewers.
The game the liberals play is always the same. Anything that makes a conservative's position look sensible is eliminated by three dots. The writer gets to pick and choose what he wants to illustrate. If he wants to illustrate something that will make a conservative look bad, he will quote him. He will not mention the missing qualifications to the outrageous statements.
Some journalists will quote the conservative link. When the conservative says something sensible, the journalist then adds three dots. These indicate a break in the interview. But most journalists don't do this. They simply enter the quotation with a quotation mark. Then they continue to summarize what the conservative really means, which is what the journalist wants the reader to believe that the conservative really means. Then he provides another brief quotation inside quotation marks. This is an ancient technique of journalists. I've been a journalist long enough to know that this is how the game is played.
The media have been unsuccessful in doing this to me. That is because my statements are so outrageous and unqualified in any way that they prove irresistible to Left-wing journalists. These people usually quote me verbatim. I get my point across, and they get to look like heroes for having exposed to me.
The crucial point is this: almost nobody pays any attention. Hardly anybody reads these stories. My followers rarely read these stories. Liberals rarely read them.
Here is reality: journalists don't have much clout. I learned this 40 years ago. "Sticks and stones will break my bones, but liberal journalists can never hurt me." (You may quote me verbatim.)
In the case of Alex Jones, this is a bonanza for him. His followers are laughing derisively at Megyn Kelly. She is now under the digital sword of Damocles. If she runs her edited snippets, she will look like a fraud. In other words, she will look like exactly what she is.
On the other hand, if the network now has some junior technician frantically reinserting what Jones really said, Jones will look like a semi-reasonable fellow. Kelly will still look like a fraud, because Jones forced her hand early. He went public about the existence of his interview before she ran her hatchet job.
She is now on the hook. I call it her Sandy Hook hook. No matter what she runs on her show on Sunday evening, she is going to look like a fraud. She can either be seen as a boneheaded, unwavering fraud, or she can be seen as a cowardly fraud who reinserted Jones's qualifications, or worse, as a fraud who refuses to run the segment on Jones, despite the fact that she promised that she would.
BILL MOYERS VS. ME
I have been down this road before. Back in 1987, Rev. Bill Moyers planned to run a PBS show featuring me. It was going to be part three of a three-part program on PBS. It was a program on the New Christian Right. I was confident that I was going to wind up as the bogeyman of the whole series.
I was proud of the whole thing. I liked to think of myself as the bogeyman of the New Christian Right. It was good positioning back then, although nobody cares these days. I thought of myself as Jerry Falwell with footnotes.
Still, I was taught very early by R. J. Rushdoony to avoid interviews by liberals. He said they will always have the upper hand. They will get to edit whatever I say. He said that any publicity was never worth it. I believed him.
I wrote about this incident for Lew Rockwell back in 2001. I quote it here because my memory in 2001 was closer to 1987 than what I remember today. I wrote this.
The Republican Party hired the master advertiser, Rosser Reeves (Reality in Advertising), to create a series of 30-second filmed interviews of Dwight Eisenhower, to be shown on television. Ike answered briefly and vaguely, spot by spot, short questions that were posed by a voice. While the filming was in progress, he asked rhetorically after a take, "Is this what the old general is reduced to?" It was, indeed. These paid commercials were run in states where the race with Stevenson was considered close, most notably Ohio. (David Halberstam devotes a fairly lengthy section of his book, The Fifties, to Reeves' work.)
Reeves' TV spots set the pattern for subsequent politics. He understood that the public does not remember intricate details. Viewers remember brief phrases or images. Reeves made millions of dollars for the Mars candy company with his slogan, "melts in your mouth, not in your hand." The TV image of a chocolate-smeared palm is embedded in my mind almost 50 years later.
You can buy a video produced by Bill Moyers on Reeves, the presidency, and TV spots, "The 30-Second President." I mention this because I once defeated Moyers by using the reverse of Reeves' strategy. He was planning to do what I firmly believed would be a hatchet job on me in the third segment of his 1987 PBS series, "God and Politics: On Earth As It Is in Heaven." His staffers kept calling my two offices, begging for an interview. They even called my pastor for an interview. I told everyone to rebuff the requests.
Moyers' staffers kept asking my staffers, "Doesn't Dr. North want to get his ideas across?" My silent answer was, "Yes, but on my terms, not Bill Moyers' terms." I knew all about the power of videotape editing. Some unknown lackey is sent out to interview a naive victim for two hours in order to get one or two juicy sound bites, and then the retroactively spliced-in Famous Interviewer zings the victim on-screen with loaded questions, for which the editor splices in the victim's answers. The victim has no power of reply and no authority to review the show ahead of time. In writing, scholars are supposed to use ellipses to indicate dropped words: [. . .] There are no ellipses in video editing.
The final version of Moyers' show was not complimentary to me, but the show produced no problems for me. That was because I was nowhere to be seen. They interviewed some of my critics, but there was no talking head of Gary North to be guillotined (or "Billotined") by Moyers.
The TV news shows have to have a talking head or an image. If you're not on-screen, TV's assassins will have trouble getting to you.
In retrospect, I now realize what I did to him. I Conned him. I Billy Conned him. Joe Louis famously said of Conn, "He can run, but he can't hide." I hid. Moyers never laid a glove on me.
Today, the intended victim can get even by posting his secret recording on YouTube. He can get out the message that he wants to get out, and the mainstream media cannot lay a finger on him.
There is nothing the shrinking networks can do to hurt Jones. He can present his side of the story on YouTube. His followers will chortle. Furthermore, every liberal journalist who is envious of Kelly's $15 million dollar a year contract will secretly rejoice. There are probably several thousand of them. All's well that ends well.
Alex Jones understands the limitations of the mainstream media. Megyn Kelly does not. She has now had a lesson from a master.