Repost from the old site.
Interesting article at a neat website called Double Standards. Most of my media consumption is this sickening garbage called US media. One of the major annoying this about this US media addiction habit of mine is that the media is lying to me all the time. I don’t mind being lied to if I can figure out that I am being lied to. This is where I object. I can’t often tell that the US media is lying to me.
One thing that is clear is that the joke of a liberal media, not to mention a Communist media, in the US is some kind of a cruel. But head on over to American Renaissance (the racist right) or, really, any standard US conservative sites and you will find that many conservatives, in addition to being soulless pricks, are also stark raving bats insane.
They actually believe that there is a liberal media somewhere in the US, and many believe that the US media is actually socialist or Communist. There is not one speck of truth to this nonsense. There are five main US news stations – ABC, CBS, NBC, Fox and CNN. Not one of these could be said to be liberal in any way.
No major US newspaper is liberal and none of the three major US newsmagazines – Time, Newsweek or US News and World Report – is liberal at all. There is but one liberal radio station and one liberal-Left radio station on my dial, and both are partly paid for by public funds. One of them has to go on continuous fund drives because it does not accept advertisements.
There are some liberal – Left magazines out there, but not many, and most are not large circulation. With the increased Gramscian hegemony of conservative ideas lately, more and more magazines have moved to the Right – The New Republic starting in 1980, The Atlantic sometime in the 1990’s, Esquire at some unknown point.
Any true liberal media, first and foremost, would support the rights of ordinary persons and workers over that of the rich and capital. By that yardstick, there is not a single major liberal media outlet anywhere in the US. All US newspapers, newsmagazines, TV stations and large radio stations are hostile to everyone but business, the upper middle class and the wealthy.
They use their media monopoly to flood America with propaganda in favor of the class interests of the rich and the upper middle classes and capital. This propaganda is objectively and demonstrably hostile to the interests of the majorities of the following groups: middle class, the working class, low-income persons, consumers, the environment, minority groups, the elderly, the disabled, women and small children.
Yet almost no one in these groups is able to ascertain the agenda they are being fed. Instead, the vast majority of members of the above groups actually believe the propaganda of the US media – the propaganda that is directed by their class enemies at them and their class.
This was what Gramsci was talking about, and in this way, the media under most capitalist systems is de facto controlled. Chomsky has also written a lot on this. In Europe, at least there are leftwing papers like Liberacion in France.
I assume that the continental media may be supportive of European social democracy, a form of capitalism is attempts to redistribute capitalist profits via government to all classes and groups. Can any of my continental readers help me on this one?
In Argentina, there is a large leftwing daily, and the Sandinista press continues in Nicaragua.
The situation in India and Venezuela are typical for the media under capitalism.
When Chavez took power, there were perhaps 5-10 large dailies in the state. There were also 5-10 major TV stations and some large newsmagazines. Every single one of these major media outlets was owned by the upper 1% of Venezuelan society and reflected their class interests in a cruel and soulless manner. All of these media outlets cooperated with imperialism in the coup that tried to remove Chavez from office.
For this reason, I supported Chavez shutting down the worst offender; but really, he ought to shut down any and every reactionary outlet that supported the coup. On the other hand, this would bring him widespread approbation that might make his situation even worse.
In India, almost all of the media is of course owned by the top 1% of earners. What I find baffling is that when I tell folks that when the wealthiest 1% owns the media, almost all of them will use that media to propagandize in favor of the interests of their top 1% class, I get a lot of resistance. Your average person refuses to believe that media barons actually do this.
Not only is Indian media owned by a tiny elite that continues to live in palaces like Rajas while tens of millions of Indians live on the street, and the system kills at least 4 million people every year, but the overwhelming majority of owners and top editors are members of the higher castes.
Here in the US, almost all reporting on India is done by Indian-American reporters. Dalit (untouchable) activists say that the overwhelming majority of Indian-American reporters for the US media are members of higher castes. Hence you almost never read anything in the US press about the horrible and wicked caste system in India.
I have only touched on the question of whether or not media can be said to be democratic in the US, or for that matter in any capitalist state. There are many more questions raised about the impoverished state of US democracy in the linked article – I would emphasize the money-based elections that characterize not only the US, but most capitalist states.
I don’t necessarily agree with all of his points, but it sure is great to read articles like this somewhere! God bless the Internet.
Repost from the old site.