History has taught us that the media industry in Washington is capable of posing a considerable threat to our democracy. It stands to reason that a sound and empowered federal regulation ought to exist, one capable of holding media outlets accountable. There’s got to be a mechanism overseeing the news, to see it stays within the bounds of reason.
Hardly any such protections exist, however, and haven’t since the FCC disposed of the Fairness Doctrine in 1987. President Bill Clinton observed this is not a topic frequently discussed by the media giants who govern our screens.
The world of American media is currently going through some fundamental changes. As part of this massive transformation, media companies have dramatically increased efforts to wield influence in Washington.
With a massive lobbying presence, and a steady dose of campaign donations to politicians on both sides of the political spectrum, big media has been pressuring the government to allow it more consolidation. A corollary goal involves privatizing and commodifying the internet.
The media controls the information flow. It has acquired an unparalleled power to reach into people’s lives. If consolidated and twisted to authoritarian purposes, it would turn into a weapon of terrifying strength. Any would-be dictator would naturally perceive this as well, and seek to acquire it.
Therefore, it should come as no surprise to see that the Koch Brothers are providing $500 million of the cash needed to buy out Time Magazine.
Meredith Corp., a magazine publisher and broadcast company, will acquire Time Inc. in a deal totalling $2.8 billion, the company announced Sunday.
The Koch brothers are the domestic source of most of the worst indignities we have suffered these last ten years. All of this is a part of their grand strategy to eliminate government interference from the business sector. Anti-monopoly laws, anti-pollution laws, anti-public aid laws. These things cost the likes of Koch Industries a lot of money every year. This is why they are willing to spend so much to get rid of them in the long run.
They are the money behind many Republicans like Scott Walker, for example, the governor of Wisconsin who used a lousy backdoor bill to cripple the school system there. It was a crucial step in breaking the backs of unions nationwide and in inciting conservatives to wickedness.
If the Koch Network comes to dominate the American media, it will probably come to dominate the American government shortly thereafter.
If that happens, all hope of turning humanity back from the road to ruin it has started down is lost.
Stephen Hawking warned in July that if we don’t desist from the course we’ve been on, global warming will become so bad that Earth will “become like Venus, with a temperature of 250 degrees Celsius, and raining sulfuric acid.”
He also predicted that humanity’s natural greed would prevent us from properly addressing the problem.
None of this matters to the Koch brothers, however, whose fervent commitment to libertarianism- laissez-faire, dog-eat-dog capitalism- coincides precisely with their foremost, bottom-line interest: the elimination of government regulations aimed at containing toxic pollution and ozone-damaging emissions.
Koch companies are spewing these everywhere. Around the country, around the clock. And the only power strong enough to hold them accountable is the government.
However, there is one sure way they can succeed in tipping the balance against governmental regulation.
Seizing control of the government itself.
The Kochs have been planning this out for a long time. Their father, Fred Koch, was a co-founder of the John Birch Society, which can fairly be considered the centre of neo-conservative politics.
The trademark tenets of its philosophy include liberalism being the root of all evil, mistrust and hostility toward persons of color and other groups of at-risk persons, and a deep seeded fear of change. It is typified by racism, nationalism, and an ideologically devoid will to power. It carries within it the essence and spirit of fascism.
This is why they are paying so much money to take control of Time Magazine is one of the most highly recognizable and respected magazines in the world. To buy it out and fashion it into a vehicle of their propaganda would carry obvious strategic significance.
The tactic is to manipulate the national dialectic through their control of mouthpieces in the right-wing media. Recent shows like The Young Turks suggest their ideas have begun taking root on the left as well. This reality has to be faced and fully realized before counter-efforts will prove effective.
In 1983, journalist and professor Ben Bagdikian published his groundbreaking book, The Media Monopoly, which revealed that just 50 corporations owned 90 percent of the media. That number has gradually dwindled over the years and eventually led us to our current crisis, where more than 90 percent of the media is owned by just six companies: Viacom, News Corporation, Comcast, CBS, Time Warner and Disney.
To take control of the media once and for all, they have only to conquer these six companies. Here, we can look to Russia for a model. Putin did it in the post-Yeltsin era within a couple of years, with a nearly identical strategy.
The concept of the media they share, however, is a far cry from the First Amendment. For Putin and the Kochs, it’s a simple equation. Whoever owns the media controls what it says.
Putin pursues a two-pronged media strategy. At home, his government clamps down on internal communications while at the same time positioning abroad by deploying RT, the international news agency formerly known as Russia Today to challenge Western ideas and warp the lines of truth.
However, there is one key difference. Putin controls Russia’s government so thoroughly that he basically is Russia’s government.
The Koch brothers do not yet hold such power here.
So that is what they’re after. By way of achieving this goal, they have targeted the center with a political pincer attack. Their plan is to employ both ends of the radical spectrum with candidates in line with their philosophies and take over from within.
2016 Libertarian Party Presidential candidate Gary Johnson pointed out during the cycle that “Interestingly enough, the candidate I most often side with, on 73% of the issues, is Bernie Sanders”.
Putin spoke highly of Bernie as well. And it seems an unlikely coincidence that the Justice Democrats, a Sanders-affiliated organization started by Young Turks founder Cenk Uygur, have targeted Democrats nationwide in primary challenges.
“It is time for them to step aside and let us lead. If you want unity, we’re ready to lead,” Uygur said on his popular internet TV show, The Young Turks.
The sheer brazen insolence! How many Presidents have you helped get elected, Cenk? Worthless as can be. Good for nothing but hurting real Democrats.
Any reasonably intelligent person ought to see this is a time when every dollar should be focused on targeting the GOP and waking our country up from the nightmare we’ve been in since last November. We should be sticking together like the opposition is.
As we prepare to enter the New Year, we’re going to be seeing these themes arise time and again.These are all topics we’ve covered before. Media consolidation. Anti-union sentiment. Attacks of governmental regulation of all kinds. It all comes down to economic slavery gift-wrapped with a fancy word, libertarianism.
2018 is the year that we start taking back our country. The only way we’ve got a shot at cleaning all this up is to retake the Congress. All our energies will be given to keeping #TheBlueWave alive.
There is a reasonable alternative to the pandemonium created by conservative greed and the current administration. Please join us in the task of helping the concept evolve.