Published on Townhall.com
For the two and a quarter centuries of our republic, Americans have expected the fourth estate to tell it raw and straight. In the lifetime of Baby Boomers, however, the Progressive Establishment, abetted by most news and information outlets—State Media—and Academia, have distorted our founding truths in much of what we hear and watch, not unlike the Soviet Union’s Pravda and China’s People’s Daily.
The term, “State Media” has been an apt descriptor for every administration’s media pawns since WWII, but in the past seven years, collaboration by government and friendly outlets has reached new heights of deception and perhaps, illegality. The Congressional Research Service (CRS) pointed out there’s been nothing new about White House use of government resources for propaganda in recent decades, but in the early years of the Obama Administration, it had already “leveraged ties to the arts and entertainment community to embed propaganda in the content of television programming and artwork. These propaganda efforts violated appropriations riders and federal law prohibiting the use of appropriated funds for publicity or propaganda purposes.”
The CRS stipulated: “The President’s right to sell his policy recommendations to Congress and the public is not disputed; however, using the resources of the federal government to activate a sophisticated propaganda and lobbying campaign is an abuse of office….”
One early example was the Obama Administration’s 2010 expenditure of at least $945M to promote Obamacare, along with other progressive agenda items. A recent instance is more disturbing. In a story that carried a distinct lack of outrage from State Media, Ben Rhodes—Deputy National Security Advisor at the White House and brother to CBS President David Rhodes—apparently orchestrated the West Wing effort to buy—via The Ploughshares Fund—an “echo chamber” with various media outlets, such as NPR, to deceive Americans about nasty realities of the Iran deal. Money changed hands. Money made NPR talk.
In his book, A More Perfect Union, (2015), Dr. Ben Carson reminds us why, after spending time in 50 countries, he’s always glad to have been born an American. “These liberties we enjoy do not exist by accident,” he says. “They have not been preserved by luck.” It’s about the U.S. Constitution and our freedoms of speech and the press, amongst others, and it was no accident those freedoms were amongst the very first insisted upon by the original states in the Bill of Rights.
What would not startle Dr. Carson is the notion that our “press” is no longer so free, inasmuch as much of it—today’s State Media—is inextricably circled with Academia and the Progressive Establishment (which should be an oxymoron but isn’t). This is a trilateral commission you never hear about—all useful idiots propagating the progressive agenda every day and night.
As repeaters—not reporters—of talking points provided by their political masters, State Media operatives have been the dupes of a philosophy that bodes an end for the America of Washington, Lincoln, and Reagan. It’s entangling reach of ownership by what are likely four of the top five TV-Radio-Print-Cable companies is outlined by one source, but this is just a small slice of what they have controlled in the recent past and today—and what we’ve watched or listened to:
Comcast: NBCUniversal, the NBC network, Telemundo, CNBC, MSNBC, Bravo, Oxygen, CNBC World, 24 TV stations, Comcast Sports, and pieces of the Weather Channel, A&E, The History Channel, Lifetime, FEARnet, PBS Kids Sprout, as well as several online outlets, and Universal Studios in Hollywood.
Disney: ABC television network, ESPN, the Disney Channel, Pixar Animation, and pieces of A&E, Lifetime, Biography, and The History Channel.
Time-Warner: Warner Brothers Television, TBS, TNT, TCM, CNN International, CNN, HLN, HBO, Cinemax, and magazines, such as Time, People, Sports Illustrated, Life, InStyle, Real Simple, Fortune, Southern Living, and Entertainment Weekly. TW also owns Warner Brothers Pictures, New Line Cinema, Castle Rock, and others.
CBS: CBS Corporation, Showtime, Smithsonian Networks, CBS Sports, CBS Studios, 29 television stations, CBS Radio & 130 radio stations, CNET, Simon & Schuster, Pocket Books, Scribner, CBS Films, and others.
Completing the top five is News Corp with Fox Broadcasting, 27 television stations, Fox News, Fox Business, Fox Sports, the Wall Street Journal, the New York Post, TV Guide, Barron’s, Harper Collins Publishing, 20th Century Fox, Searchlight Pictures, and National Geographic U.S., amongst others. News Corp’s Fox brand is one small segment of the overarching media empire and the only one generally regarded to be other than pervasively liberal.
That’s only the top five and doesn’t include Internet masters like Facebook, Yahoo, Google, and a legion of other information managers.
As for Academia, a recent New York Times piece by Neil Gross, “Why Are the Highly Educated So Liberal?” lays bare the progressive agenda’s success in our colleges and universities. A recent Pew study, he says, shows that over 30% of those who have attended school beyond an undergrad degree have “down the line” liberal views on iconic issues, in contrast to just 10% of the population as a whole. The shocker is that in 1994, only 7% of postgrads would have described themselves in the same way.
Other studies document social effects once beyond imagination. Census data indicate, for example, that while 40% (or so) of GenXers between the ages of 18 and 32 married, Millennials do so only 26% of the time. According to still another Pew study, the percentage of religiously unaffiliated adults has gone from 36.6% in 2007 to 55.8% in 2014.
Social management is the progressive objective, and most media and academic organs march under that banner. To butcher the Fox tag: the information game is far from fair and balanced. It’s rigged. Does what we know, ever so incompletely summarized here, suggest a vast left-wing conspiracy controlling our education and information systems? The U.S. Constitution’s guarantees and the truths we treasure will fade into historical irrelevance if a progressive agenda succeeds. Insist on change this November.