The GOP & the Mainstream Media: It’s Time To Declare War
The continued fecklessness of the GOP leadership and brain trust in continuing to treat blatantly partisan actors and the news outlets they operate as if they’re the disinterested, non-partisan, dispassionate, objective disseminators of news and fact that they so laughably claim to be has to end.
The flagship news outlet of the American media is the New York Times. This is the same New York Times that has not endorsed a Republican for President since 1952, that employs no one in its newsroom that is not 100% aligned with the far Left side of the political spectrum, whose idea of conservative editorialists are so-called “conservatives” who routinely endorse Democrats (William Safire, David Brooks) and their policies, whose ownership and management donate exclusively to the Democratic Party and other Left-aligned organizations.
It’s really no secret that you can swap out the staff of the NYT with the staff of The Nation and the typical reader wouldn’t see any difference in the output. The same (if only to a marginally smaller extent) applies to the Washington Post (you can switch the WaPo’s staff with that of The New Republic), the Big Three Networks and CNN (which largely take their cues from the NYT).
Reince Priebus, and every one of his RNC predecessors know this and have known this for the past three decades – the media is on the other side.
Of course, when the NYT, WaPo, LAT, CBS, NBC, ABC, CNN, etc. were the only game in town, one could understand the hesitation to declare war on the media – they had the big microphones, cameras, printing presses and transmitters, and as the adage goes went – never pick a fight with someone who buys ink by the barrel.
But things have changed.
It wasn’t that long ago that Dan Rather’s fake memo hit job on George W. Bush would have succeeded in torpedoing his re-election campaign, there was a time John Lewis’ lies about being called the N-word on the Mall during the Obamacare vote would have been reported as true and repeated ad nauseum without challenge, there was a time the media’s joyful rush to pin Jared Loughner’s rampage on Sarah Palin and the Tea Party would have become received wisdom.
But that time has passed.
The instant the internet, most especially internet audio and video, and yes, blogs, came of age, that excuse became inoperative – you definitely can now get into a fight with someone who buys ink by the barrel … and not only win, but win decisively.
It really is well past time the GOP had itself a major gut-check about its relationship with the so-called “mainstream media.” The fact is there is no greater enabler of biased journalism than the Republican Party. Contra Jason Hart, pointing the finger at Ohio’s newspapers for PolitiFact Ohio’s liberal bias ignores the real culprit; the Ohio GOP.
Make no mistake, as far as the editorial suites of Ohio’s major newspapers are concerned, Politifact Ohio’s liberal Democratic bias is a feature, not a bug. It is somewhere between highly unlikely and impossible that it is just some strange coincidence that when the Cleveland Plain Dealer was setting up Politifact Ohio, it could only find highly partisan liberal Democrats to be it’s fact-checkers, and that the newspapers treating Politifact Ohio’s rulings as the final word did not notice.
There really is no upside in continuing to participate in the polite fiction that these people are anything other than political actors with an agenda. They’ve proven over and over again that they’re not deserving of the presumption of good faith.
The Romney Campaign should alert every one of its surrogates and every Republican on Capitol Hill about to go one any news program that they should take a leaf from John Sununu and Newt Gingrich and assume they’re heading into hostile territory and act accordingly.
Challenge their premises. Question their integrity. Openly point out their partisanship and suggest that they’re coordinating with the White House. Refuse to let them change the subject. Counter their experts with your experts and deny their “facts.”
Reince Priebus over at the RNC should immediately launch a daily “television” program to be hosted on the RNC’s YouTube channel. I’d call it “MediaCheck”, with a set of hosts, that will, on a daily basis, identify any number of newspaper articles or broadcast segments, name the producer(s) of said piece of biased journalism, address the lies and bias contained therein, and as often as possible strongly suggest that this was as a result of dishonesty and partisanship.
No more presumption of good faith.
What I’m asking for is no less than a full-on open war on their own programs and invading their own news space so that even the most oblivious mushy middle voter would not be ignorant of it.