Jeff Cohen

Jeff Cohen

Jeff Cohen was associate professor of journalism and the director of the Park Center for Independent Media at Ithaca College, founder of the media watch group FAIR, and former board member of Progressive Democrats of America. In 2002, he was a producer and pundit at MSNBC (overseen by NBC News). He is the author of Cable News Confidential: My Misadventures in Corporate Media - and a cofounder of the online action group, www.RootsAction.org. His website is here: http://jeffcohen.org

Articles by this author

Martin Luther King Jr. and others march in Washington, DC in August 1963 demanding economic reforms, including full employment and better wages. (Photo: CWA/Local 7076) Views
Friday, July 03, 2020
Politicians of Color Should Not Be Immune From Criticism
To me, being an anti-racist activist means that one consistently challenges the structures of racist exclusion, exploitation, repression, and incarceration. It does not mean that one must defend or praise establishment politicians of color when their politics are an affront to our values and vision...
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At every stage in U.S. history—beginning with the brutal dispossession of Native Americans and continuing through modern methods of injustice from redlining to mass incarceration and private prisons—U.S. racism has been inextricably embedded in the system of profiteering. (Photo: Jörg Kantel/flickr/cc) Views
Wednesday, June 17, 2020
Just Saying "Systemic Racism" Doesn't Expose Systemic Racism
If you’ve been watching mainstream TV news programs lately, you’ve probably noticed that a number of corporate journalists—prodded by the marvelous protests against police violence—seem to have learned a new phrase, which they invoke regularly: “systemic racism.” That’s an improvement from a dozen...
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Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders bump elbows before the Democratic debat hosted by CNN on Sunday, March 15, 2020. (Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images) Views
Monday, March 16, 2020
Socialists for Biden and the Power of Corporate Media
It’s doubtful that Sunday night’s CNN debate shifted momentum in the presidential race currently favoring Joe Biden. The next few weeks offer the Bernie Sanders movement perhaps its last chance to win over—mostly through electronic means—Democratic primary voters. One voting bloc to focus on might...
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MSNBC host Chris Matthews opines on the state of the Democratic primary ahead of the Nevada Caucus last month. (Image: screenshot/MSNBC) Views
Tuesday, March 03, 2020
Did Chris Matthews Reveal That Democratic Establishment's Real Fear Is a Bernie Win?
Mainstream news outlets keep pounding home the same message—that the "Democratic establishment" or "Democratic moderates" are worried sick that Bernie Sanders can't beat Trump. They worry about a Trump landslide, and a "down-ballot disaster" in Congressional races. Democratic insiders, we're told,...
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Thursday, February 13, 2020
When CNN Introduces Bernie-Bashers Only as 'Former,' CNN Is Lying To You
CNN and CBS do it. NPR and PBS do it. They all do it. It’s a “gentleman’s” agreement between elite media and their establishment guests—a courtesy major news outlets bestow upon former officials who get to pontificate and editorialize about today’s events with no worry they’ll be identified by...
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Despite CNN's grandstanding claims that Sanders has not provided a price tag on his health plan, he repeatedly says that Medicare for All will cost $30 trillion or a bit more over 10 years. (Photo: CNN) Views
Monday, January 20, 2020
7 Pointed Questions for Corporate Media About Their Anti-Progressive Biases
We need to ask many serious questions of our nation's corporate media. Here are just a few. 1. Why don't you refer to our current healthcare system as a "corporate-run system" ? At Democratic presidential debates and elsewhere, network TV journalists have aggressively challenged the notion of "...
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Democratic presidential hopefuls Mayor of South Bend Pete Buttigieg, Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren, Former Vice President Joe Biden and Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders participate in the fifth Democratic primary debate of the 2020 presidential campaign season co-hosted by MSNBC and The Washington Post at Tyler Perry Studios in Atlanta, Georgia on November 20, 2019. (Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images) Views
Tuesday, December 10, 2019
Warren vs. Buttigieg Clash Offers Contrast with Bernie's Consistency
In what is currently a four-way race for the Democratic nomination—featuring Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren and Pete Buttigieg—the recent war of words between Warren and Buttigieg has done little for them. But it has highlighted contrasts with Bernie Sanders. As Sen. Warren and “Mayor...
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Democratic presidential candidate, former Vice President Joe Biden works the grill at the Polk County Democrats' Steak Fry on September 21, 2019 in Des Moines, Iowa. Seventeen of the 2020 Democratic presidential candidates and more than 12,000 of their supporters made an appearance at the event. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images) Views
Monday, September 23, 2019
Will Joe Biden Be a Rerun of 2016 Tragedy?
You might ask what it takes to remember When you know that you’ve seen it before —Jackson Browne, “Lives in the Balance” Joe Biden is a throwback to an earlier time. Much of it could be called “the Clintonite era”— when Democratic presidential contenders openly cozied up to the wealthy by appearing...
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Democratic presidential hopeful Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders speaks at the Spin Room after the third Democratic primary debate of the 2020 presidential campaign season hosted by ABC News in partnership with Univision at Texas Southern University in Houston, Texas on September 12, 2019. (Photo: Frederic J. Brown/AFP/Getty Images) Views
Monday, September 16, 2019
What George Carlin Taught Us About Media Propaganda by Omission: On Bernie Sanders, Medicare for All, and the Green New Deal
In the old George Carlin joke, the TV sportscaster announces: “Here’s a partial score from the West Coast – Los Angeles 6.” For a brilliant comedian like Carlin—who skewered corporate power , class structure and political / media propaganda—that’s one of his more innocuous jokes. But it’s sharply...
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Saturday, August 17, 2019
Memo to Mainstream Journalists: Can the Phony Outrage; Bernie Is Right About Bias
Mainstream journalists are having a ridiculous hissy fit over Sen. Bernie Sanders’ suggestion that there may be a connection between the owner of a news outlet and the content or biases of that outlet’s coverage. If Sanders had suggested that Rupert Murdoch’s ownership of Fox News impacts its...
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