I was once told that it takes passion and diligence when it comes to journalism. You had to have a good education, and a broad perspective on how the world works – conflict, economics, politics, the list goes on. The old statute used to be that you needed three sources in order to publish an article, otherwise it’s not reliable. And the fact that we used to have something called “journalistic ethics” only supports what I laid out in the first part of this paragraph. To do “the least harm” when publishing a story was the golden rule. But this is no longer the world we live in. The journalists of today couldn’t hold a candle to giants such as Walter Cronkite, who gave you the news, not his opinion. Today we have the Grey Lady, aka The New York Times, being subverted by activists, masquerading as journalists. The old guard has been canceled, petitioned out of their position for a more “progressive” voice. Now the same paper that was once called the paper of record is publishing opinion pieces being labeled as actual news and not just an op-ed. They use old statistics or twist someone’s words or actions to better suite their political agenda – which is where all of this begins, politics.
You’ve probably noticed a trend of everything becoming political – even children’s shows. The media has been saturated with political activists, and as one twitter user put it, “stripped the paper of it’s core ethics, and is now wearing it as a skin suite”. Masquerading as a real authentic news source. When once you could count on the news to give you a fair and balanced perspective on world or national events, you now have blathering morons pontificating their personal politics on screen to millions of impressionable viewers. The Brian Stelters, Don Lemons, and Rachel Maddows of the industry all used to have a consistent and fair view of the world. But ever since Trump became president, it seems these networks and journalists have forgotten everything they said before 2016. Before the memory hold became a prominent feature of the news industry, even Don Lemon once had a somewhat spicy view of BLM, saying that they need to “pull up their pants” if they want to be taken seriously. Now he defends their violent actions (even though BLM isn’t what it used to be, being coopted by violent psychotic Marxists, i.e. ANTIFA). The media has been manipulating the public ever since they got the green light in 1996 to be profit driven and not driven by a passion for the truth. The organic news that would emerge from passionate individuals is no longer a staple of the industry, which is now led by how many followers you have or how many clicks your article or publication can generate. This leads to a problem where stories and information are only published if they drive viewers or clicks to their website. And I can point you to key areas that has caused this break down in perceived truth.
First area of interest is the 1996 telecommunications act which permitted major news networks to start profiting from their content. This was the first warning bell that should have prompted people to be concerned with the information they consume.
As it says on their website “The Telecommunications Act of 1996 is the first major overhaul of telecommunications law in almost 62 years. The goal of this new law is to let anyone enter any communications business — to let any communications business compete in any market against any other.” Now, I will always be a fan of the free market, but this industry should have never moved to this business model since it no longer incentivizes the most important aspect of journalism – publishing the unbiased truth. Instead, it is now driven by money. This was the first nail in the coffin.
Next, we have the emerging era of the internet. Before social media, the news was still driven by TV eyeballs and newspaper sales. Since as early as 1950 however, paper sales started to decline, which put a strain on the authenticity of the content these outlets would produce. But advertising still held up the industry. It was only in 1999 or 2000 that the advertising began to fall.
So what was the solution? They started with upping their subscriptions. Then they started to publish content that bent the truth slightly to get more eyeballs on their websites. Using a form of algorithmic analytics, publications found out that if they used key buzzwords or topics, they would get more clicks than more unbiased, but boring subjects. From this spawned the embryo of current journalistic practices. But one more major social change was to take place that would completely strip all these journalists of their ethics – Facebook and Twitter. These two platforms on their own destroyed the integrity of the system, making the incentive for fact or truth moot.
When journalists started using Twitter it seemed to be a godsend. A much easier way to share live news and communicate with each other on a national, even global level. But this was only what we saw on the surface. As more and more journalists and publications used Twitter more and more, bubbles started to form. At first they weren’t noticeable, since they were very large and diverse. But at some point, they began to splinter off and consolidate. More journalists began blocking people and only would only follow their peers. And soon enough you had what was coined the “Beltway Bubble”. A small bubble of DC journalists who were very out of touch with the rest of regular America. They would only hear stories and information from their friends and coworkers, which would lead to them sharing that information (or misinformation, rather) with the same people they got it from. Confirmation on the truth is easy when you all agree on the same politics. And since the long march of the institutions had culminated in academia and journalism, communist forms of thought solidified the bubbles into solid concrete, sealing them in a tomb of misinformation and emotional projection.
This is where Trump came from. The only president to have 98% of mainstream media obsess over his every move. And with no real editorial ethics or accountability, his entire presidency has been twisted and bent into a narrative of fantastic fiction based in the minds of Hollywood. And to be fair, if this is all true, he is the worst fascist in history.
Enter Seth Abramson, just a random journalist with a blue check mark and no (from what I can tell) real principals or ethics. He claims the recent ANTIFA/BLM riots were caused by everything under the sun – except ANTIFA or BLM. But the images, stories, and videos that are on the web now completely dismantle his carefully crafted fiction of a fascistic president hell bent on removing our civil rights. And his “sources” are the same beltway publications that regurgitate false information and hyperbolic stories to each other. But that’s not the best part of this story. With most fantastic stories about the president, Seth is coming out with a book soon. Bernie Sanders is proof that releasing a book based on the orange man can make you a millionaire. Must be why he omitted “millionaires” from his speeches.
To this point, we have now come full circle. Back to where this started – money. He wants the book to be a best seller. But most books don’t sell big, unless you write it about Trump. He seems to have a trilogy of lies and hyperbole, shilling them while pontificating on Twitter about all of Trumps evil deeds. And is any of this called out? Well, yes. But the monopolistic social media companies are within the same bubble. Looking at advertising algorithms and capitulating to radical leftist ideologues who threaten to dismantle their good PR with advertisers if they don’t ban opposing opinions. An old communist tactic.
So what does this leave us? Well, the brink of civil war. The complete eradication of American History. The dismantling of civil rights. And it looks as if nothing can stop it. Not even Trump. But I hope a change will happen soon, thanks to the pandemic. The money has dried up and people crave the truth. We are sick of constantly being lied to and gaslit. And hopefully soon, the fourth estate will be returned to it’s correct position as the skeptical purveyor of truth.