The Press Is Destroying Itself
Matt Taibbi says The American Press Is Destroying Itself.
He is correct, but it's not just the media.
Trump is in on the act as are both political parties.
Taibbi even starts with Trump.
Our president, Donald Trump, is a clown who makes a great reality-show villain but is uniquely toolless as the leader of a superpower nation. Watching him try to think through two society-imperiling crises is like waiting for a gerbil to solve Fermat’s theorem.
On the other side of the political aisle, among self-described liberals, we’re watching an intellectual revolution. It feels liberating to say after years of tiptoeing around the fact, but the American left has lost its mind. It’s become a cowardly mob of upper-class social media addicts, Twitter Robespierres who move from discipline to discipline torching reputations and jobs with breathtaking casualness.
They’ve conned organization after organization into empowering panels to search out thoughtcrime, and it’s established now that anything can be an offense, from a UCLA professor placed under investigation for reading Martin Luther King’s “Letter from a Birmingham Jail” out loud to a data scientist fired* from a research firm for — get this — retweeting an academic study suggesting nonviolent protests may be more politically effective than violent ones!
Probably the most disturbing story involved Intercept writer Lee Fang, one of a fast-shrinking number of young reporters actually skilled in investigative journalism. Fang’s work in the area of campaign finance especially has led to concrete impact, including a record fine to a conservative Super PAC: few young reporters have done more to combat corruption.
Yet Fang found himself denounced online as a racist, then hauled before H.R.
In the most discussed incident, Times editorial page editor James Bennet was ousted for green-lighting an anti-protest editorial by Arkansas Republican Senator Tom Cotton entitled, “Send in the troops.”
Taibbi goes on with case after case.
I disagree with Cotton, but I found it chilling that the Times issued a retraction and an apology for the article.
The thought police are everywhere.
Taibbi notes that we are seeing headlines previously imaginable only in The Onion, e.g., “27 police officers injured during largely peaceful anti-racism protests in London.”
One needs to read the entire article to grasp the magnitude in which the thought police are in control.
Here are a couple more examples:
The editor of Variety, Claudia Eller, was placed on leave after calling a South Asian freelance writer “bitter” in a Twitter exchange about minority hiring at her company. The self-abasing apology (“I have tried to diversify our newsroom over the past seven years, but I HAVE NOT DONE ENOUGH”) was insufficient.
Meanwhile, the Philadelphia Inquirer’s editor, Stan Wischowski, was forced out after approving a headline, “Buildings matter, too.”
Intercept Most Galling
I find the left-wing slant of The Intercept galling but I did not expect the political correctness stunt they pulled.
Fang got into trouble for questioning the logic of protesters attacking immigrant-owned businesses “with no connection to police brutality at all.”
A close friend of mine accurately summed up the situation as follows:
"The point of journalism and the point of educational institutions is to promote free and thoughtful inquiry.
But most Democrats will not speak out as they fear the wrath of the woke crowd just as Republicans fear the wrath of Trump."
Nearly everyone but Trump and the ever-Trumpers are afraid of the thought police.
The result is one "clown", as Taibbi describes Trump, vs two packs of cowards, one on the left, the other on the right with Trump egging both sides on.
If you say anything at all against Trump you automatically are accused of having TDS.
And heaven help you if you run a newspaper and say something like White Lives Matter or Buildings Matter, because if you do, you will soon be out of a job.
The middle is very fearful of the radical Left and the radical Right. This is a very dangerous slope we are on.