On the very day of a media takeover, on the day that all a nation’s media comes from one ideological source that nation becomes a dictatorship, a nation ruled by one authority, an autocracy. On that day in America our Constitution becomes moot and our democracy/republic dies. We have Conservative millionaires and billionaires in this nation who are trying to make right wing media the only media view available when you turn on your radio, your TV, and eventually your computer. They have enough money, time, and clout to make this happen.
This attack on our media has been going on for decades. We all know the names of the right wing radio hosts: Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh, Mark Levin, and Sean Hannity. Limbaugh began broadcasting politics on the radio in 1984, Beck in 2000, Levin in 2006. It is likely that there are more right wing talkers who are less famous.
People know these names because these media people have been haranguing Americans on the road and in their garages for years. Their popularity did not go unnoticed by Rupert Murdoch and Roger Ailes who, in 1996, established Fox Network News, broadcasting right wing “news”, opinions, and conspiracy theories on our TV’s 24/7. I know that Fox News runs all day long on televisions all over America and has for years, spouting right wing “propaganda” targeted at Americans who nurture grievances against almost any topic you can name.
Conservatives have already taken over our government – they control all three branches, and a majority of state governments (they’re still working on this). Now they are going for our media. Despite their clumsiness in governing they are still in the driver’s seat. They are stuffing Federal courts with conservatives (some ridiculously unqualified). I seem to be the only person in America who thinks this looks like a coup from the inside. It looks to me like conservatives, who have nursed their own grievances, will finally win the Civil War.
One group on the attack to co-opt our media is Sinclair Broadcasting Group led by the conservative Smith family, David D. Smith is the current executive officer. Sinclair already controls 70+ stations in markets across the nation. Here’s a list if you want more detail:
Sinclair requires local news channels to insert right leaning “news” into their broadcasts.
At one time they used talkers recognizable as right wing “Trumpers”, but now the talkers they use are more generic. If you think someone is a right wing commentator and you look them up on line most likely you will see that they are on the staff at Sinclair Broadcasting.
For some time now Sinclair has wanted to expand into other markets by merging with Tribune Media. Today an article in the NYT suggests that the legal way has been cleared and we will probably hear soon that Sinclair gets its way and the American people lose more ground.
Also today my news feed tells me that the Koch Brothers are seeking to help the conservative group Meredith enlarge their media empire by merging with Time, Inc., a merger which has been attempted before and failed due to financial concerns. Now that the Koch brothers have given financial backing to Meredith their bid is looking more likely to become a deal.
Normally the FCC and the courts would prevent these kinds of media monopolies, but the right seems to have cornered every agency that they can use in their quest to control America. Perhaps they do not realize that by controlling America in this way they destroy it. Perhaps they don’t care.
As far as I know, although mainstream media tends to lean left, the closest the left comes to owning media is what we find on MSNBC in the evenings. The left does not believe that it is appropriate for one ideological camp to own the media. How do we fight back against these obnoxious conservatives who don’t mind flirting with shutting down opposition views, in other words establishing an authoritarian right wing state where our democracy once lived? At the very least we should call it out every time we see it and repeat our concerns over and over again. In other words, we resist.