Roger L. Simon

We Live Under a Media Coup d'État

Coup d’états come in a variety of forms.

Some are violent with arrogant colonels pointing forty-fives at the temples of their predecessors and blowing their brains out; others are stealthy with the citizens awakening on an ordinary morning to find their whole world has changed yet not a drop of blood has been shed.

The latter is what has happened in America.

We are the victims of a media coup d’état and are currently living under it.

You will see that clearly in evidence on Wednesday night when the debates commence, each one moderated by a member of the liberal media nomenklatura. It is under the guidance of this liberalism, under their own version of sharia, if you will, that the debates will be conducted and Mitt Romney judged.

We have long lived under this assumed reign of liberalism – in our media, in our schools, and through our entertainment. It is as pervasive as the air we breathe and as unquestioned. Fox News, even the Wall Street Journal, important as they are, exist under this reign and more often respond to it than initiate their own programs and investigations.

Barack Obama is a product of this coup d’état. In a very real sense, he helps them cement it, but he has, at most, four more years to reign. The real coup plotters, the New Media Class (to cannibalize Milovan Djilas), can go on in perpetuity. And that has always been their intention.

It is the media that rules us then, not politicians. Politicians come and go; journalists, pundits, commentators – in print, on television, and now on the Internet – last forever, or nearly, as they pass the baton to the next generation without a semblance of an ideological blip, seamless as a gold medal track team.

They are the ones who tell our story to us. They are our mirrors and they are indeed a new class, as resistant to change as any entrenched group of the rich and powerful. (Yes, many of them are not so rich and powerful nowadays, but the ones that count, the ones that truly rule, are. And the others stand patiently by, waiting for their turn.)

This class, more than any, determined that Barack Obama should be president and they consequently will work more assiduously than any to assure his reelection, because a failure in that would be a serious, perhaps fatal, attack on their hegemony.

The coup would be in danger of a counter-coup. That can’t be allowed to happen. No facts, no events (Benghazi, Fast & Furious, endless unemployment, a healthcare fiasco) will get in the away or be allowed to be given serious credence.

But when did this coup start and how did it get so successful?

It certainly began further back than we all realized. It began with the illusion that media could be even-handed. Journalism could be an occupation like cardiology, subject to verification and highly professional. But it never was. It was always biased – written by humans.

Nevertheless, there was a plot to make us think we were hearing the truth.

When the New York Times claimed they published “All the News That’s Fit to Print,” what they were really doing was publishing the news they determined was worth our seeing. It was the news their way. It always is, no matter who is doing it.

Then, in 1972, Watergate happened and became a turning point this new class was waiting for. Journalists became heroes played by movie stars. They overcame presidents and were more powerful than kings. Suddenly their way was the way. Competing visions were swept aside or relegated to also-ran status like a token conservative on the op-ed pages of the Times. A certain bias became the bias became “the truth.” Schools adopted this truth and taught it to children as early as kindergarten and as late as graduate school. It became the sub-text or the uber-text of many movies and TV shows.

And a coup began – the coup we are living under now.

It was a slow-motion coup. For a while we didn’t know it was happening. But soon enough it was all around us.

It was so powerful that this year the Republican Party allowed the coup plotters to control the debates, even those that determined their own nominee.

And the rest of us sat outside, tweeting, blogging, hoping Charles Krauthammer would say something smart on Fox News or Rush would get his revenge. But the narrative is set. The coup has taken hold. It’s too late now — or is it? We live in a Media State.