The liberal media is a myth. It’s been bought and sold by the rich. Take a look at this critique of the editor of the NY Times editorial section, James Bennett.
By now, there’s a somewhat prolific repertoire of writings critical of Bennet’s tenure. The beef is primarily with the op-eds as opposed to the editorial page, which remains a champion of progressive values, especially on urgent issues like gun control, climate change and, of course, opposition to the policies pouring forth from the Trump White House. It’s not surprising that some of the most blistering assessments have come from anti-establishment precincts. Here’s Glenn Greenwald: “If your goal were to wage war on media diversity in all of its forms, and to offer the narrowest range of views possible, it would be hard to top the roster of columnists the paper has assembled . . . Beyond the obvious demographic homogeneity, literally every one of them fits squarely within the narrow, establishment, center-right to center-left range of opinion that prevails in elite opinion-making circles . . . None is associated with or supportive of the growing populist left or the populist right; they all wallow in the vague, safe, Washington-approved middle ground, members in good standing of the newly overt neoliberal-neoconservative alliance.”
It’s all got the same flavor, whether it’s the Sunday morning news shows or the op-eds of most of the elite newspapers: wealthy old white guys droning on to support failed ideas backed only by tradition. It’s agonizing to watch.
You can almost taste the flopsweat from the elite political media. They’re warming things up in case there really is a Democratic wave in the fall. Experience tells us that, if that happens, the elite political media will immediately engage the dampers on anything a Democratic majority might want to do that is in anyway Democratic or (horrors!) liberal. Expeditions to the Trumpish hinterlands will depart immediately. Appeals to “bipartisanship” will deafen the gods. This is what happened in 2006, when the country revolted against George W. Bush and his many crimes and failures. This is what will happen next fall, too.
You’re seeing it with the hilarious contortions of James Bennet regarding how he’s putting together his Opinion staff, and this obvious ratings extravaganza is another indication that all the old tracks are being set down again. In 2006, this phenomenon helped with the efforts to toss the Avignon Presidency down the memory hole so that people wouldn’t notice how it was the logical end to 30 years of conservative politics. It’s going to take even more of an effort to do that with this disaster. No wonder they’re starting early.
I’m afraid that’s a safe prediction. Trumpistani’s win: we get stories about sad, stupid people who are unhappy that we don’t respect their self-harming opinions. Trumpistani’s lose: we get stories about sad, stupid people who are unhappy that they don’t get to inflict their self-harming opinions on the rest of us. The media will do whatever they can of the myth of the Golden Age of Trump, just as they’re resusciating George W Bush’s reputation, and as they’ve always enshrined the myth of St Ronald Reagan.
Wouldn’t it be nice if we had a reality-based media that was less interested in pampering the opinions of the yahoos who still buy their papers and more concerned with reporting facts? Bret Stephens should never have gotten a column, not because he’s conservative, but because he rejects the facts of climate change.