The most deeply satisfying moment in the campaign so far was when the GOP candidates turned the questions back on the moderator, unmasking the media bias, and making the moderators look foolishly amateur. Conservatives as a group — whichever candidate they supported — understood that a moral victory had been won that night.
We know and understand the media bias from the perspective of the Right. We know the rules of engagement. It’s simple: begin with the assumption that the news media is the Democrats’ AV department, and you will seldom go wrong.
What we do not stop to think about is the attitude of the Left toward the media. They have been accustomed to it being their natural power-base, and holding a home-court advantage there. But the rise of the internet has threatened that advantage.
The New Media in particular is threatening the stranglehold they have long enjoyed on information provision. Matt Drudge became famous for breaking a story about a certain blue dress that everyone else was trying to bury. Various aggregators, news outlets, and op-ed sites (our own Clashdaily.com among them) are reporting news and stories from a perspective that the counterparts on the Left would not offer.
This isn’t just a right-and-left issue. The original societal role and function of the media (in case the establishment media has forgotten) was to keep the population informed so they in turn could keep their government honest. Their job was never to cheerlead for their own guy, both parties should have a healthy fear of – and respect for – actual journalism.
And now, with the rise of Citizen-Journalism, (in the model of Andrew Breitbart) every citizen with a cellphone is a potential reporter, every private blog a potential news outlet, and there are more and more ways to keep government accountable.
But let’s not take this for granted. If you look across the border to Canada, you see the dirty tricks liberals are willing to play to retain their home-court advantage. And if they are willing to do it there, you can expect them to try it here.
Without going too far into details, liberal domination of the Canadian news media makes MSNBC look politically neutral by comparison. They absolutely defined the last election, partly because the CBC is comprised of government employees. Not surprisingly, they came out against the party that wanted to reduce the CBC’s overall budget (money = power) and gave full support and endorsement of the guy who promised more money.
Predictably, these Canada’s Pravda fawn over the new Prime Minister that gave them job security while their private competitors are downsizing.
Enter Sun News. Several years ago, a private TV news network was launched, sharing news stories the other networks wouldn’t touch. Long story shorter, their adversaries used government agencies and the courts to put them at a financial disadvantage, and eventually, they folded.
But they didn’t go away. They formed an online presence one year ago. (www.TheRebel.media) They continued to report corruption, expose waste, and generally call BS on the government wherever they saw problems worth reporting. Many of their staff (example Brian Lilley, with whom you may be familiar) are formally trained journalists
The newly-elected far-left party in Alberta is now making news for refusing to allow Ezra Levant (co-founder of TheRebel, and owner of the only news magazine in North America that had the cojones to reprint the original danish Muhammad Cartoon) into press briefings.
Ezra, to his detractors, is a loud-mouthed, opinionated sonofagun for whom no amount or expletives would suffice to describe. Fine. You don’t like him. We might have a similar opinion of people from Huffpo, or other New Media agencies. What does that matter?
Since they cannot shut him up, they have taken a different approach. They are trying to deny him access to the news itself, to the issues being reported. Cut him out of the press conferences themselves. Why? Because he says bad things about how they run the government. For shame!
Don’t doubt for a second that if American leftists can figure out a way to swing it, they would love the chance to do the same. What can YOU do to stop this?
Reward the good websites. If you find people that offer quality content, support it.
When you see stories that dig a little deeper, that offer insightful commentary, or provide a better backstory for a trending news item, stories that go beyond the typical clickbait, reward the providers. Get the word out.
Click. Like. Share. Tweet. Email. Tell a friend and generally share the hell out of the good stuff. Reward the stories that hold our politicians and public figures to account.
Here’s why: if some random guy with an obscure blog gets turned away from a presser, it’s easy to justify it. If, however, someone working for a credible news site that has hit a certain critical mass gets turned away, there will be public outrage. They will have earned the right to have access to these press conferences. They will be the TRUSTED voice unafraid to be critical of government.
You know… the job journalists USED to be known for, before they became cheerleaders.
Reward the sites that do more than cheerlead the government. There may come a time when they are the only ones telling you what’s going on.