10.22.2008

WHAT'S NEXT FOR THE NEWS MEDIA?

BY CINCINNATUS
I
It is no secret, and we have talked about it a great deal here at News! On The March, that the mainstream media has sold its very soul (withered and black as it is) to the Democratic Party. As much as conservatives have frothed at the mouth over pervasive media bias in the past, the selective reporting has reached, unhindered, critical mass in the 2008 election. From the displacing of blame for the subprime mortgage mess from the indisputably culpable Democrats to the Republican scapegoats, to the white-washing of Obama’s deep ties to ACORN, the serial perpetrators of widespread voter registration fraud, tales of their journalistic malpractice abound. Their exploits are so despicable that Orson Scott Card, for whom the label "liberal Democrat" hardly seems adequate, wrote a blistering article today that takes the news media to task, an indictment that reads like your standard National Review fare. His recognition of the media’s agenda should be considered the high-water mark in the conservative battle to expose said prejudices. Nevertheless, it is likely that the mainstream news media will not suffer for their role as a sycophantic toady of the Democratic Party. That is, unless, they wake up on November 5th and are handed this lead story: John McCain Defeats Barack Obama.

Just as the two-fold Reagan victories gave birth to the “Era of Limbaugh” and conservative talk radio, so too did eight years of Bush bolster the ascent of Fox News and the “new media.” So where would a McCain victory leave the mainstream media? With any luck, it would bankrupt the bastards. Or at least teach them a valuable lesson about the limits of their reach and influence. The last four years have seen a slow bleeding in the revenues of such journalistic touchstones as the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and others and forced them into massive layoffs and widespread outsourcing (for the results of said outsourcing, see this
article). Broadcast news organizations such as NBC and CBS have suffered greatly in the ratings for their flagrant liberal agenda, from the public shaming of Dan Rather to the antics of Katie Couric and her MSNBC brethren, Chris Matthews and Keith Olbermann. A McCain victory would be a repudiation of that agenda by the American public, furthering their downward spiral and, however unlikely, force them to rethink their role. With any luck, we’ll see C-SPAN emerge as the top dog in news.

But let us look at the other side of the story (something the mainstream media is incapable of doing) and consider the fate of Obama’s accomplices should he march to victory. The payoff will of course be huge. Obama would likely allow the return of the
Fairness Doctrine, an FCC policy that requires broadcasters to allow equal time to present opposing views to their own. Broadcasts would be arbitrarily regulated by a commission of political appointees that could change depending on who sits in the White House. Reagan rightly saw to it that this federally mandated infringement upon free speech was put to an end during his administration, which has allowed the alternative media to flourish and given conservative commentators a voice. If Obama succeeds in resurrecting the Fairness Doctrine (and with a Democratic Congress he will) it will no longer be profitable for radio stations to carry conservative talk shows. This is music to the mainstream media’s ears and is the answer to their financial woes, amounting to nothing short of a news monopoly along the lines of what they enjoyed in the 60’s and 70’s, but without the crappy neckties. By federal fiat, the conservative and libertarian voice would be punishable by fine. I doubt that you’ll find a more fitting example of how far modern journalism has sprinted from the First Amendment than that.

The bottom line: the fate of the mainstream media, much to their disgust, rests in our hands (and rightly so!). I humbly suggest that on November 4th, we squeeze some sense into them.

1 comment:

Ben Wheat said...

A correction to this article: Obama has actually said he is opposed to the Fairness Doctrine, though Congressional Democrats are stongly in favor. If the Doctrine passed both houses of Congress, however, it is unlikely Obama will veto it. The article has been corrected to reflect this.