WaPo torches itself when trying to pin ‘severity’ of coronavirus pandemic on conservative media

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The Washington Post earned a well-deserved round of social media mockery after a glaring lack of self-awareness in a headline on the “severity” of COVID-19.

The publication clearly forgot to check the mirror when it put out an article declaring, “Analysis: New research explores how conservative media misinformation may have intensified the severity of the pandemic.”

The headline quickly got attention but for all the wrong reasons.

The story cited three studies that purported to expose a “media ecosystem that entertains conspiracy theories and discourages audiences from taking steps to protect themselves and others.”

The Post even went on to target Fox News host Sean Hannity in the “analysis.”

“The end result, according to one of the studies, is that infection and mortality rates are higher in places where one pundit who initially downplayed the severity of the pandemic — Fox News’s Sean Hannity — reaches the largest audiences,” the article stated.

“We are receiving an incredible number of studies and solid data showing that consuming far-right media and social media content was strongly associated with low concern about the virus at the onset of the pandemic,” Irene Pasquetto, chief editor of the Harvard Kennedy School Misinformation Review — which published one of the studies cited in the article — told the paper.

The left-wing publication owned by Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, has long joined the attacks on Hannity and Fox News personalities for allegedly being responsible for COVID-19 deaths because of misinformation in reporting. Back in April, a dubious study claimed that more Hannity viewers had died of the virus than those who watch the network’s “Tucker Carlson Tonight.”

Many of the outlets that happily shared the “findings” were the same ones that initially downplayed the pandemic. The Washington Post is among the publications with selective coronavirus memory.

“Get a grippe, America. The flu is a much bigger threat than coronavirus,” the newspaper announced in early February.

Later that same month, as the pandemic threat began to become more evident, the Post declared: “The first American cases of coronavirus shouldn’t spark a panic.”

Perhaps The Washington Post needed some schooling by White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany who torched CNN’s Jim Acosta when he attempted to accuse President Donald Trump of making “many false and misleading statements” about the pandemic, citing The Post.

“These 18,000 false or misleading statements according to the Washington Post, if there’s any president out there we should be fact-checking, or political leader that should be fact-checked, isn’t it President Trump?” Acosta asked during a press briefing last month.

“If you’re going to get into the fact-checking business, there is no one that should be fact-checked more than the mainstream media that has been continually wrong about a number of things,” McEnany fired back.

The Washington Post’s latest “analysis” sent heads crashing to desks as Twitter users unloaded on the paper.

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Frieda Powers

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