Ed Driscoll

The News They Kept To Themselves

Neo-Neocon explores “The problem with starting an alternative media on the right:”

We’ve been saying for quite some time that one thing that’s needed is to start an alternative media source on the right. Fox is not enough.

But there’s an inherent problem with that, and it’s not just the fact that it can be hard to find experienced newspeople who aren’t liberals. The much more basic problem with an alternative conservative media is that the media on the right has been so demonized—and any alternative media would be equally demonized—that Democrats and even many of those in the middle have been taught that it’s unreliable and will not watch it, and/or they automatically discount what it says.

Fox News, for example, is “Faux News,” and most people I know laugh when it’s suggested they watch it, as though it were a Pravda of the right. The funny thing is that they are unaware that the MSM they do watch is closer to the old Soviet Pravda at this point (although a voluntary one); they are unaware of their own susceptibility to propaganda and how greatly influenced they are by it. So any new media source on the right will be “Fauxized,” much as any new exciting conservative politician is Palinized (see what happened to Ryan, and what’s starting to happen to Rubio). It’s a full court propaganda press, in which the MSM determines for the most part what the valid sources are, and the right is by definition unreliable.

Periodicals on the right such as National Review, Weekly Standard, and Commentary are either not heard of by non-political-junkies in the middle or liberals (leftists, who tend to be quite involved, often know quite a bit about them, if only to counter them)—or, if heard of, rarely read. For example, I’m not aware of having any liberal friends who read them; I tend to get blank stares of non-recognition if I even mention them.

Of course, one explanation for that is that the MSM has no reason to promote a right-leaning new media venture, except to demonize them. They’re certainly not going to champion anything on the right as a success story. Which brings us to Jonathan Last* of the Weekly Standard, after his visit to Glenn Beck’s Internet TV network, one in which he came away both simultaneously impressed and yet uncomprehending:

Second, I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I’m fascinated by what Glenn Beck is doing with The Blaze as an internet TV network and it’s incomprehensible why media reporters (and business reporters) aren’t all over this story. Beck took a cable TV following, ported it out of an established network, and ushered into his own new network, which is not just an internet TV channel, but a pay internet TV channel. How is this not the most interesting, and potentially disruptive, media experiment since the advent of Fox News Channel? And yet when you look around the mainstream press . . . crickets.

As I said, incomprehensible.

Not at all. In his “Ten Media Truths for Conservative/Republican Legislators,” Moe Lane of Red State writes, “The Media hates you, and wants you to die in a fire.” That goes double, maybe triple for Glenn Beck. Other than getting their marching orders from Media Matters (and helping to bring down Van Jones, and helping promote Jonah Goldberg’s Liberal Fascism, and…) I’m not sure why Beck gets that level of white-hot hatred from old media. But building a one-man media network after leaving cable TV — while others who have left cable TV are walking around, as Jim Treacher once quipped, with “Will Host for Food” placards around their necks — isn’t helping him generate PR from old media.

Not that Beck needs it, of course. Which really causes the MSM to silently rage.

* I’ll have an interview online with Jonathan about his new book, What To Expect When No One’s Expecting, in the not too distant future.