You Are Not Defending 'The Press', Liberals, You Are Defending Powerful Corporations
The media wars are escalating, and it is glorious. America’s liberals are all rushing to defend the same media establishment that spent the last election cycle deliberately undermining Bernie Sanders and attacking Jill Stein as though they’re sticking up for some poor, defenseless marginalized group and not some of the most powerful corporations on planet Earth. Trump’s use of the term “fake news” upon the establishment corporate media has everyone squealing about an imaginary attack on the First Amendment, even though (A) the freedom of the press is being violated in precisely zero ways, (B) the First Amendment protects Trump’s right to criticize media outlets, (C) these media outlets are the ones who invented and promulgated the term “fake news” in the first place as a way of sabotaging their competitors in alternative media, and (D) these people are voicing their criticisms using their First Amendment rights in a completely uninhibited way.
Consider the top comments on Trump’s Saturday tweet in which he wrote, “The FAKE NEWS media (failing @nytimes, @NBCNews, @ABC, @CBS, @CNN) is not my enemy, it is the enemy of the American People!” One New York Times writer got thousands of likes and hundreds of retweets (a readership circulation that many smaller magazines would be delighted to receive) by responding, “Such damage. We cannot denounce #humanrights violations around the world if we are committing them in our own country.”
This is how empty-headed the McResistance has become. Inside the deliberately-constructed liberal echo chamber, criticizing extremely powerful media conglomerates is a damaging “human rights violation,” even when your own speech is so free that you can write such things on the President’s own Twitter feed, and despite the fact that those media corporations are not being silenced at all. Nobody on CNN, NBC, CBS, ABC, or the “failing” New York Times has lost their job or their voice as a result of Trump calling them “fake news”, but people in alternative media outlets have lost their jobs as a result of the corporate media “fake news” smear campaign. I am one of those people.
As we’ve discussed before, the term “fake news” was not in use at all prior to the November elections according to Google Trends. In the weeks following the elections, these same corporate media outlets that Trump is attacking began saturating the airwaves with this think tank-concocted slogan in a deliberate attempt to slander any and all anti-establishment media appearing on the internet. As Glenn Greenwald wrote on December 10th while this smear campaign was still peaking, “The phrase ‘fake news’ has exploded in usage since the election, but the term is similar to other malleable political labels such as “terrorism” and “hate speech”; because the phrase lacks any clear definition, it is essentially useless except as an instrument of propaganda and censorship.” Perfectly legitimate alternative media outlets wound up on viral “fake news” blacklists while at the same time social media giants discussed their desire to find ways to make “fake news” less visible online.
My old employer, Inquisitr, was one such blacklisted alternative media outlet. Rightly fearing for their sponsors and their viewership, my bosses asked me to stop writing the fiery opinion articles I’d become known for, since my popular attacks on the Democratic establishment from the left were a likely reason for that blacklisting. The corporate media’s smear campaign was such an immensely successful psy-op upon the American public that for weeks I literally could not write a single article without having people comment “fake news” on my opinion pieces, despite their being neither fake nor news.
So I had to look elsewhere for readership, I took a major financial hit, and I feared for my ability to provide for my children. It’s looking bright once more, but it’s taken time to rebuild the viewership I lost when the large Inquisitr platform was no longer available to me. My voice was silenced; my job was taken from me, by these same corporate giants that establishment liberals are now defending as poor innocent victims of “human rights violations.”
My story is not unique; they never are. If it happened to me, it happened to others. I don’t write fake news. I’m not a Russian propagandist. I’m not even a Trump supporter for god’s sake, I’m just one of the many millions of people who are sick of the way America exploits its own people and inflicts military violence all over the globe to prop up a few powerful billionaires and their corporations. People like me are treated as enemies by the corporate media, and liberals are choosing to defend the corporate media instead of us.
I hope Trump succeeds in undermining support for the media giants. Undermining the dominance of their voices over the public discourse would be a great boon for the underdog, for the bloggers, the YouTubers, the amateur journalists and independent social commentators, who do an infinitely better job of fulfilling the duties of the press than corporate media does. It would give the people much more of a voice at the table. Sure he’s leaving Fox alone, but we can take out those liars too, especially if we’re not being constantly attacked, subverted and undermined by the rest of them.
America, at this time, has a corporatist system of government. This means that there is no clear line between government and the extremely powerful multinational corporations which have entrenched themselves within it. For all practical purposes, the five massive corporate conglomerates who control nearly all American media are as much a part of the government as Donald Trump is. They are not poor widdle victims. They’re not even “the press”, as that term was understood when the Constitution was first written. Their free speech is rightly just as protected as yours or mine is, but these corporate giants have no interest in creating an informed citizenry, as was the initial reason for making journalists the only profession specifically protected under the US Constitution. They only exist to manipulate public opinion and make money, which are two inseparable goals in a corporatist government. They manipulate the masses in a way that advantages extremely powerful multinational corporations and the billionaires who profit from them.
And they don’t need your help America. They’re the same people who have you thinking that it’s normal to live hand-to-mouth in the richest country in the world. They’re the same people who’d have you think that wanting your own tax dollars to go towards your own health and wellbeing rather than killing children overseas is selfish and immoral and not the other way round. They’re the same people who will stare down the barrel of a camera telling you to give your actual hard-earned tax dollars to bad-at-money banks because they lost zillions in an irresponsible gamble that no one asked them to take. While then telling you that it’s your fault that they need to take your house as well.
These people are not our allies, they are our enemies. They consistently tell us lies to keep the rivers of tax money flowing into their bosses’ bottom line, lies that kill people abroad and domestically, lies that they shame people into accepting as truth by social pressures. No one ever lost their job by denouncing Donald Trump, in fact many have been richly rewarded for it. It’s a well known fact that the way to make big bucks in journalism is to become a “friendly” of the Clintons et al.
Many people quietly self-censor their dissent to this stream of mainstream lies because anything other than the most enthusiastic of anti-Trump rhetoric is viewed with suspicion. That’s what’s missing from the mainstream discussion. If censorship works, you won’t know about it; that’s the whole idea. Which makes the notion of anti-Trump sentiment being censored laughable. Turn on your TV right now to pretty much any station except Fox and wait for something anti-Trump to come along. You won’t wait long.
Now wait for something truly progressive. But don’t hold your breath. It’s like the time I spent about five hours watching a tape trying to find myself in the crowd of the Prince Charles and Lady Diana Royal Wedding parade. I was five years old. I saw a flash of black hair over a little pale face that for years I thought was me, and my mother affirmed my sighting. Years later she told me I was watching the wrong damn parade. That’s the whole experience of trying to find progressive politics on mainstream media in a nutshell. You might think you saw yourself, but it was just someone else who looked a bit like you.
Mostly they don’t even look like us. They’re not our people. They’re not even people, they’re large psychopathic corporations that only know how to suck up money. Stop defending them.