The Media’s Political Suicide

Daniel Greenfield writing in Frontpage Mag has some thoughts about how the media is committing suicide. They’re good thoughts.

McClatchy had bought Knight Ridder for $4.4 billion to create the second largest news company. After going into Chapter 11 bankruptcy, McClatchy was won in an auction by a hedge fund, which also owns the National Enquirer, in a secret bidding which started with $30 million cash and $270 million in debt.

None of this says anything good about the future of its D.C. bureau, or the Miami Herald, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, the Sacramento Bee, the Kansas City Star, and other hollowed out husks of major urban papers carrying huge loads of pension debt and even bigger loads of radical left-wing politics.

Earlier this year, Warren Buffett had dumped 30 newspapers that he had bought for $344 million for $140 million. The Newseum, a $450 million media museum, backed by Gannett, was sold off last year.

Gannett, the biggest newspaper chain in the country, lost $80 million in the first quarter of the year even after a merger in which it slashed jobs at some of the hundreds of newspapers which it controls.

Over 20,000 media jobs have been wiped out in the previous two years and it’s just getting started.

Just breaks your heart, doesn’t it? Yeah, no, mine either. But in a way it should. The press has been a driver of freedom since the modern world began, and I daresay we are already missing it. Still, it’s become a hollowed-out shell with little to recommend it.

Local papers are dying. Formerly influential national news magazines are irrelevant. When was the last time you heard anything from Time except around its annual Cause of the Year publicity stunt?

And it’s not just the dead tree media that’s in trouble. Digital darlings like the Huffington PostVice and Vox have been cutting jobs because clickbait doesn’t win over subscribers who will pay for content. Network television and cable news are on their last legs as cable subscribers cut the cord and content providers set up their own Netflix rivals. What happens to NBC News or CNN in a marketplace defined by Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, Peacock, HBO Max, CBS All Access, and whatever other platforms will pop up?

The media hasn’t had a viable business model in a long while. It’s a zombie that kills even as it dies. […]

The transformation of the media from for-profits to non-profits sheds any commitment to the marketplace, to a community of readers who pay for its services, and instead puts it at the service of dot com tycoons who want to invest in left-wing causes. The experience of reading or watching the media’s content also changes from information to indoctrination. As is the case with so many of the dot com giants which finance the media and on whose platforms the media depends, the reader and the viewer are no longer consumers, they are the product that is being sold to the media’s political backers.

Even as the non-profit media claims that it’s now free to pursue journalism as a public service, it’s not providing a service to the public, it’s serving a small class of donors by trying to influence the public.

All pretty obvious when you look at it but who wants to look at a looming zombie, soon to be a corpse.

“Twitter is not on the masthead of The New York Times. But Twitter has become its ultimate editor,” Bari Weiss wrote in her resignation letter to the New York Times.

Twitter is the media’s editor. Its platform provides the content that fills the media, but it also makes the infrastructure of the media surplus to requirements. The medium is the message and the medium of Twitter is 280 characters. As Weiss notes, “the ethics and mores of that platform have become those of the paper, the paper itself has increasingly become a kind of performance space.”

But the real performance space is on Twitter where content is consumed and debated much more rapidly in short form than in the long form pages of the New York Times. As the media transforms into a pure instrument of political advocacy whose antics play out on social media, there’s less and less use for the expensive billion-dollar operations, the newspapers, channels, and even the sites of the media. […]

The media has been killing cities and the country to buy a little more time for its existence. But it is becoming a zombie that is killing the basis for its own existence and then the very thing that it does.

The members of the media began by killing their ethics and morals. They tossed away the truth as a value and a goal. They turned on their colleagues, incited mobs, celebrated violence and terror. And then they set out to destroy the organizations they worked for and the country that they live in.

Their final act of political suicide will be to kill their own writing.

As sad as that may be, well, they chose their own fate. The world can get by without the New York Times, the Washington Post, the various broadcast propaganda organizations, without The Telegraph and the Guardian, and even without the BBC. We will find the information somewhere as we always have. The media is no longer the message, the message is the message, as it always should have been.

We Shall fight in the Basement of the Capitol…

Mollie Hemingway has some thoughts on the Democrat insurrection. As always they are good thoughts.

Republicans have two choices for how to handle the Resistance’s latest attempt to undo the 2016 election through dramatic means. They can sit there and take it, or they can fight it.

Some Republicans can be counted on to sit there and take it. This approach entails allowing Democrats to hold secret hearings where they handpick snippets to leak to a compliant media in service of setting a narrative. After the leaks are published by the compliant corporate press, these Republicans can impotently push back on some of it.

There is one and you should read it at the link, it’s all accurate. But her final paragraph is a dire warning.

This isn’t about Trump, or Republicans, or conservatives. It is about Washington needing to learn that political differences have to be settled at the ballot box lest they instead be settled with an undermining of our constitutional norms and institutions.

And given the importance of the cause, with a civil war in the streets, I fear.


Daniel Greenfield has some excellent thinking on the media.

It’s always bad news for the media.

Verizon is looking to dump the Huffington Post. It’s the latest bad news for the industry in a year that has already seen over 7,200 job cuts across the media spectrum from digital to old-fashioned print.

Why should the rest of the country care about what’s happening to the media industry?

Same reason you should care about what happens when a crackhead can’t pay for his crack.

Like the proverbial crackhead, the media has two survival strategies: stealing and going crazy. These strategies are happening all around us and they’re wrecking the country worse than a million crackheads could.

Unable to make its business model work, the media turned to cannibalism. The print media began merging into bigger conglomerates, and, lately, the failing digital media has gotten merger fever. But the media can’t actually outgrow its problems, and the bigger organizations, after cutting jobs and outlets, still can’t make it work. But the mergers also spurred unionization in print and digital media. While the media bowed to political pressure and signed off on the unions, the costs are killing the media.

Some things never change. If you are like me you watched as unions (aided by short-sighted management, to be sure) killed American steel and American cars, and many more.

While media unions are cannibalizing the outlets they work for and wiping out freelance journalism to protect their own jobs, they’re also cannibalizing the entire internet and social media by demanding that Facebook, Google, and other big tech companies, censor and suppress content from non-media sources. The media’s demand that companies embed their ‘fact checkers’ as gatekeepers is an assault on free speech, and is triggering anti-trust investigations of the tech companies that surrendered to the media.

That’s the stealing. Then there’s the craziness.

The impeachment push has the fingerprints of the corporate media all over it. Clinton cronies secretly laundered the Steele Report through their media contacts to provide the supporting “evidence” that was used in the FISA application. The origins of the Mueller investigation meanwhile, according to a former New York Times editor, go back to an illicit affair between Ali Watkins, a 26-year-old, and James Wolfe, the 57-year-old who headed security for the Senate Intelligence Committee. The affair was conducted with the full knowledge of Watkins’ bosses at the New York TimesBuzzFeed, and Politico. Another media affair case occurred earlier this month involving CNBC and a DIA analyst.

We all know that but we didn’t read it in the NY Times or the Washington Post, did we? No, and we never would have.

The First Amendment was meant to protect speech, not industries. The media industry is trying to kill speech and is willing to kill the country to make it happen. But it’s the industry that needs to die.

In short, it is Donald Trump, a few Congresspeople, and the people against the Democrat Party and their funders, the bureaucracy, and the dead tree (and a fair share of the internet), not to mention academia,   and yes, that is, in fact, a sextuple redundancy.

Can we win? We must, by whatever measures. We see the exact same battle around the world, from Hong Kong to Britain whichever way one travels. If America goes down, almost none of them have a chance.

After the Battle of France in 1940, Winston Churchill told Britain this:

But if we fail, then the whole world, including the United States, including all that we have known and cared for, will sink into the abyss of a new dark age made more sinister, and perhaps more protracted, by the lights of perverted science. Let us therefore brace ourselves to our duties, and so bear ourselves, that if the British Empire and its Commonwealth last for a thousand years, men will still say, “This was their finest hour.

And now, almost eighty years later, it is the turn of the United States to save western civilization. But remember, he also said this, acknowledging the support of the Dominions, as we too should acknowledge our allies around the world.

In casting up this dread balance-sheet, contemplating our dangers with a disillusioned eye, I see great reason for intense vigilance and exertion, but none whatever for panic or despair. During the first four years of the last war the Allies experienced,…nothing but disaster and disappointment, and yet at the end their morale was higher than that of the Germans, who had moved from one aggressive triumph to another. During that war we repeatedly asked ourselves the question, “How are we going to win?” and no one was able ever to answer it with much precision, until at the end, quite suddenly, quite unexpectedly, our terrible foe collapsed before us.

The Civil War 2.0

From Daniel Greenfield on Sultan Knish via PowerLine. John Hinderaker did a superb job of excerpting the salient point out on an excellent but quite long article, so I’m pretty much following along here.

How do civil wars happen?

Two or more sides disagree on who runs the country. And they can’t settle the question through elections because they don’t even agree that elections are how you decide who’s in charge.

That’s the basic issue here. Who decides who runs the country? When you hate each other but accept the election results, you have a country. When you stop accepting election results, you have a countdown to a civil war.
***
The Mueller investigation is about removing President Trump from office and overturning the results of an election. We all know that. But it’s not the first time they’ve done this.

The first time a Republican president was elected this century, they said he didn’t really win. The Supreme Court gave him the election. There’s a pattern here.
***
What do sure odds of the Dems rejecting the next Republican president really mean? It means they don’t accept the results of any election that they don’t win.

It means they don’t believe that transfers of power in this country are determined by elections.

That’s a civil war.

There’s no shooting. At least not unless you count the attempt to kill a bunch of Republicans at a charity baseball game practice. But the Democrats have rejected our system of government.

This isn’t dissent. It’s not disagreement.

You can hate the other party. You can think they’re the worst thing that ever happened to the country. But then you work harder to win the next election. When you consistently reject the results of elections that you don’t win, what you want is a dictatorship.

Your very own dictatorship.

The only legitimate exercise of power in this country, according to the left, is its own. Whenever Republicans exercise power, it’s inherently illegitimate.

Greenfield’s assertion is that a collection (a network, he calls it) of leftists believe they’re entitled to run the country, and in fact, do.

The left lost Congress. They lost the White House. So what did they do? They began trying to run the country through Federal judges and bureaucrats.

Every time that a Federal judge issues an order saying that the President of the United States can’t scratch his own back without his say so, that’s the civil war.

Our system of government is based on the constitution, but that’s not the system that runs this country.

The left’s system is that any part of government that it runs gets total and unlimited power over the country.

If it’s in the White House, then the president can do anything. And I mean anything. He can have his own amnesty for illegal aliens. He can fine you for not having health insurance. His power is unlimited.

He’s a dictator.

But when Republicans get into the White House, suddenly the President can’t do anything. He isn’t even allowed to undo the illegal alien amnesty that his predecessor illegally invented.

A Democrat in the White House has “discretion” to completely decide every aspect of immigration policy. A Republican doesn’t even have the “discretion” to reverse him.

That’s how the game is played. That’s how our country is run.

Sadly, very true, although the fight isn’t over yet.

Greenfield’s assertion is that Trump’s election has caused the ‘Shadow Government’ (what some are calling the ‘Deep State) to come out of the shadows.

Professional government is a guild. Like medieval guilds. You can’t serve in if you’re not a member. If you haven’t been indoctrinated into its arcane rituals. If you aren’t in the club.

And Trump isn’t in the club. He brought in a bunch of people who aren’t in the club with him.

Now we’re seeing what the pros do when amateurs try to walk in on them. They spy on them, they investigate them and they send them to jail. They use the tools of power to bring them down.

That’s not a free country.

It’s not a free country when FBI agents who support Hillary take out an “insurance policy” against Trump winning the election. It’s not a free country when Obama officials engage in massive unmasking of the opposition. It’s not a free country when the media responds to the other guy winning by trying to ban the conservative media that supported him from social media. It’s not a free country when all of the above collude together to overturn an election because the guy who wasn’t supposed to win, won.

We’re in a civil war between conservative volunteer government and leftist professional government.

There’s quite a bit more, and it’s all good. It’s not a shooting war, at least yet, although it could go there. Be best if it doesn’t.

And yes, I find it quite persuasive, since it fits coherently with what we see, and not only in the United States.

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