Yesterday, Donald Trump provided a short notice press conference. It lasted for just over an hour. For the bulk of the time, Trump lambasted the news media. He told CNN's Acosta that he was no longer calling CNN fake news, he was now calling it "very fake news." He told the world that the so called journalists were the most dishonest people in the world.
The corporate news media were not impressed. France 24 described Trump as unhinged. The Guardian asserted that the press conference was a freak show. Talking head after talking head has characterised Trump as crazy. MSNBC's Joe Scarborough joined in the mockery and insults, claiming it was the most chaotic and disorganised press conference in history. He accused Trump of living in an alternative reality, of just making stuff up, of making verifiably false claims.
However, Trump's supporters obviously see the world differently. They loved it. What they saw was Trump calling out the fakestream media for their dishonesty and hatred. As far as his supporters are concerned, Trump was simply telling the truth: the corporate media are engaged in anti-Trump propaganda; they are engaged in a campaign against him and his presidency.
This is a case of people looking at exactly the same phenomena and seeing completely different realities. There really is no way the two sides can agree here. The corporate media are as committed to their reality as Trump's supporters are to theirs. However, they cannot both be right: there is only one reality. So how can we tell who (if anyone - as both sides could be wrong) is right?
Well one clue is the corporate news media knew that Trump could not win. His election seriously hurt their egos. His victory threatened their sense of how smart they are. That is not something anyone likes. So seeing Trump as a monster that they can morally attack is a useful defence mechanism. Indeed, Jeff Zucker has claimed that CNN's opposition to Trump is good for his journalists' morale and they are working harder than ever.
Another clue is the corporate news media saw something that millions and millions of other people could not see. Being able to see things that are invisible to others is usually a sign, not of perspicuity, but hallucination. And the people who could not see a ranting and raving, chaotic and delusional Trump are precisely the ones who wanted him to win. For them his victory reinforced their egos, their sense that they are smart. They, therefore, have no need to resort to defence mechanisms when he think about Trump.
The so called journalists are delusional.