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December 20, 2018

The Many Fabrications of CNN's 2014 Journalist of the Year

Now that Der Spiegel's fabulist has admitted to 14 fabrications among the 70 articles he wrote (though, as in the case of Steven Glass, that number may rise with further evidence), people -- though not the mainstream media (except for Der Spiegel itself) --are beginning to point out his specific fabrications.

John Sexton documents some of those.

One story Relotius wrote last year was about a small town in Minnesota called Fergus Falls. If you're guessing that this was a Gorillas In the Mist style feature designed to make middle-America look bad, you are exactly correct. Michele Anderson, who lives in Fergus Falls, remembers meeting Relotius last February when he came to live in the area for three weeks to supposedly get a clear view of small-town America...

Sexton then quotes a woman who in this town who immediately smelled a German Rat, and who compiled a list of huge fabrications from just this single article at Medium.

Sexton has quotes from that, or you can read the original.

This is the most amusing one Sexton quotes. Not the most important, but the most amusing -- because... it can so obviously be checked and disproven, but no one bothered doing so, and this fabulist knew damn well his editors wouldn't bother checking the "facts" that confirmed their worldview.

Note that he wrote his article in 2017.

There is also a cinema outside of town, where fast food stores are lit up. In this cinema, a flat, rectangular building, there are two films on a Friday evening. The one, "La La Land", running in empty rows, is a musical, a romance about artists in Los Angeles. The other, "American Sniper", a war film by Clint Eastwood, is sold out. The film is actually already two years old, almost 40 million Americans have seen it, but it still runs in Fergus Falls."

This anecdote that supported Relotius' exaggerated story of an immigrant-fearing, gun obsessed small town one was the easiest to fact check and yet the strangest, most random lie for him to craft. American Sniper definitely has not played in Fergus Falls since its first and only run in 2015. To be sure, we even reached out to Isaac Wunderlich, the manager of Westridge Theatre.

Sexton adds:

And sure enough, they reproduce a message from the theater manager who says American Sniper hasn’t played there since Feb. 2015, two years before Relotius visited. The films that were actually showing at the time he visited were: Lego Batman, Fifty Shades Darker, La La Land, Split, Dog's Purpose, Hidden Figures, and Rings. But those films wouldn’t serve to paint Americans as a bunch of culturally insulated gun nuts.

I can only imagine what he invented for his piece on Colin Kaepernick.

Question: Will CNN be withdrawing its award to Relotius as 2014's Journalist of the Year or will it permit it to stand, as the Pulitzer Committee and the New York Times as well did with paid Soviet fabricator Walter Duranty?

Maybe some of our cucks who are furiously leaking to CNN can ask them, given that they have them on speed-dial and all. Maybe they can do some actual reportage.

Or nah.


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posted by Ace of Spades at 06:40 PM

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