Straight Talk (Supplemental) Why the Establishment Media Is Failing (And Is Destined to Fail)

by nielskunze on February 25, 2017

This has been a slow process which is now accelerating, but the establishment media’s failure is imminent. Rather than dive into the quagmire of ‘fake news,’ I’ll focus instead on personal, individual reasons for this epic failure and how that might fit into the grand paradigmatic shift we’re experiencing globally.

The legacy media is operating from a business plan which is essentially hundreds of years old. And for centuries, it worked fine— for them. They had an effective monopoly on the dissemination of information, but with the advent and proliferation of the internet among the general public, the dynamic has changed considerably and irreversibly.

When you have a virtual monopoly on being the ‘truth-tellers,’ it is utterly inevitable that a tone of arrogance and condescension will come to dominate in the telling. For centuries, after the invention of the Gutenberg press, the only source of true humility among the media elites was good old-fashioned competition. As the competition inherent in the open marketplace of ideas begins to wane and a single dominant perspective emerges, condescension becomes institutionalized. This we have witnessed in recent decades.

Writers, documentarians and YouTubers have explained at length how approximately 90% of the news in America is controlled by just 6 corporate giants— who don’t really appear to be in honest competition with each other to any functional degree. Although these cozy corporate titans may not issue clearly delineated guidelines for overt censorship to their minions, there is a form of soft— yet very effective— self-censorship which naturally develops among the journalists, reporters and editors working within the corporate structure. Dan Rather has given many interviews available on YouTube explaining this. Journalists have ALWAYS spoken on behalf of their owners first… and in the interests of the people only selectively and secondarily.

The establishment media, with the minor exception of Fox News (who’s hardly any better than the rest), appears to speak with one voice, from a singular perspective. The tone of this entrenched perspective is decidedly condescending and conceited— the natural consequence of an historic monopoly. For clear, irrefutable evidence of this we need look no further than the following brief article appearing in alternative media:

I began writing this essay yesterday and this morning the headline, MSNBC Anchor: “Our Job” Is To “Control Exactly What People Think”, appeared in syncopated confirmation. What’s most interesting about Mika Brzezinski’s brazen statement is that none of her co-hosts and colleagues even batted an eye at the admission. This is taken as true, unquestionably. Of course the media’s job is to control exactly what people think… what else could it be?

The unspoken implication here is that there is only one ‘right’ perspective… and it happens to be the one espoused by the major establishment networks— including Fox whose deviation is too trivial to constitute healthy dissent and skepticism.

American society is deeply divided— in case you hadn’t noticed. The fracture lines are many and varied, but I wish to focus upon the fundamental division between the Thinkers and the Believers.

It has been my contention for the last twenty years or so that we are in the midst of a major paradigmatic shift, and one way to characterize that shift is the general movement from being a population of Believers to one of Thinkers. Throughout history there have always been Thinkers, and indeed they tend to be the ones who move societies forward with creative innovations. But society itself is decidedly geared toward fostering Believers over Thinkers. It is a logical statist strategy. Believers are easily governed; Thinkers… not so much.

The internet popped into our awareness and our lives in earnest around the turn of the millennium. And very shortly after that, we witnessed the most pivotal event of modern times: 9/11. Prior to the internet, the public was largely at the mercy of the legacy news monopoly to supply the narrative and the details explaining such major policy-defining events. With 9/11, the public had for the first time the opportunity to scrutinize, analyze, discuss and evaluate the narrative being given through official channels and how well that squared with the known and emerging details— in real time.

Naturally, the Thinkers jumped at the opportunity to try and answer the question which was on everyone’s mind: How could such a thing ever have happened? In answering that question for themselves, largely through internet research and discussion, many Thinkers found that their answers differed sharply with the official view being forwarded by the government and unquestioningly supported by the establishment media. Something was decidedly off. The official version appeared to defy common sense and the very laws of physics… and yet the media wouldn’t budge in their view.

Serious doubt— a healthy skepticism— had crept into the public mind… and it would not— will not— be dislodged.

It was on 9/11 that I witnessed for the first time a most perplexing spectacle when every news channel at the same time suddenly announced only hours into the event that it had undoubtedly been orchestrated by Osama bin Laden— without any investigation or evidence presented. That was more than a bit odd.

Since 9/11, more than 15 years later, the singularity of the legacy media’s voice has become even more monotone, more self-conforming. The circus of panel discussions pretending to represent multiple perspectives on current events is an obvious show, a fraud. Every newscast on every major network speaks for and defends a singular opinionated perspective. Those token ‘dissenting’ voices are routinely shouted down and are rarely— if ever— taken seriously. It’s just for show. The latest, greatest example was the recent U.S. presidential election where the media was ubiquitously in bed with Clinton, universally despised Trump, and were absolutely dead wrong about how the election would turn out. They made complete asses of themselves.

And now the news consumers have begun to catch on big time.

Younger generations are less likely to turn to the TV news in the first place, but when they do, many find that their own perspectives are not realistically represented or taken seriously on any of the major broadcasters… or within the legacy newspapers. Reasonable, middle-of-the-road conservatives, holding traditional family values, have been marginalized and ultimately alienated by the condescension news media. And it’s insulting. This is precisely what the establishment media has consistently failed to recognize. Many potential viewers just can’t relate to the agenda being forced upon them and refuse to abide by it. But in today’s online world these potential customers have options, and they’re exploring them… with a great deal of enthusiasm and delight.

The establishment media, in its misguided view, has decided to fight back with the ‘fake news’ meme, claiming legitimacy of their own monopoly on truth. But the monopoly has been broken… and it’s not returning. In trying to find like-minded online presentations and discussions of political information and views, Thinkers have found something far superior to the condescension media’s parochial crap. They have delightedly found that the new alternative media is responsive, participatory and accommodating. And what’s more… the alternative media actively encourages Thinkers over Believers… and the inevitable discussions which ensue.

The alternative media demands discernment. By its very nature, the broad spectrum of perspectives covered by alternative media encourages its potential customers to decide for themselves what’s true and what’s not. Believers are horrified and terrified of such a requirement. Believers don’t know how to think for themselves… and believe that no one else does either. Believers absolutely need to be told exactly what to think, and further they fervently believe that there are no valid perspectives or opinions outside of the ones they’ve been given. To the Believers, nearly all of the Thinkers are misguided lunatics! (It has always been so in society.)

Thinkers will often ‘fall’ for ‘alternative facts.’ But alternative facts are really just the rest of the context for any given story— the other things that should be considered while aiming for the truth. No one— absolutely no one— has the inside scoop on truth. When multiple witnesses perceive a major event, they will all give a different account of that event, and sometimes their accounts will be incompatible or even contradictory. Believers will search among the witnesses for the one with the most ‘credibility’— usually the one adhering most closely to the official account— and discount the rest. Thinkers will consider all of the accounts, rate them according to their own criteria, and formulate their own unique opinion on the matter. This is precisely what a healthy, functional mind typically does.

The ivory-tower news media has historically fallen hard into the habit of marketing only to Believers; no Thinkers allowed! This entrenched habit is one of the main driving factors responsible for forcing onetime Believers into becoming newfound Thinkers. It has been a slow process— and there are much larger forces at play here than just the media— but now we are reaching a critical juncture where thinking is outstripping believing. This is predictable and inevitable.

Consider a hypothetical broadcast on CNN where they assemble a diverse panel of ‘experts’ to discuss current geopolitical conditions and strategies playing out on the world stage. One of the experts explains at the very beginning that his perspective and explanation is derived from the premise that 9/11 was an inside job, carried out by Mossad operatives and financed by Saudi royals… and that current geopolitical maneuverings can best be understood from this unorthodox perspective. Well, of course, CNN would never allow such a perspective to be aired on their network. Doing so would reveal the real possibility of their own complicity in a longstanding lie, and their abject failure as actual journalists. CNN at this late date has no choice but to blackball any such discussion.

I can just hear Wolf Blitzer saying “That’s a preposterous idea!” to our now-silenced expert. “We can’t go on air with such a blatantly false narrative!” The dissenting view— along with any others— is removed from the discussion. What old Wolfie doesn’t seem to realize is that many many people among his potential audience regard the orthodox view on 9/11 as the obviously false narrative. And such potential customers will therefore not even consider watching the CNN bullshit analysis offered. The network talking heads can stand on their soapboxes all they want, shouting down to the masses who hold differing views and analyses that their opinions are wrong, but what will it take for them to finally realize that hardly anyone is listening anymore?

The Thinkers want one thing above all else: inclusion. They want all perspectives to be heard, to be explored, to be considered. Thinkers believe only in the open marketplace of ideas. They will not accept being told like ignorant children; they will only accept persuasion through reasonable argument. The censorship of ideas in any form is repugnant to Thinkers.

To Believers it may seem that society is at an impasse, but we will only move forward now by allowing for and actively fostering the development of individual potential among society’s members… in essence, by converting Believers into Thinkers. The nature of the ‘impasse’ is the herd mentality, conformity, group-think, the hive-mind. Individuals will stride past it easily as they learn to think for themselves and immediately notice the rich rewards to self-esteem, ability, independence and freedom they suddenly enjoy. What they ‘lose’ in false knowing they gain in personal growth.

Believing is a fearful place… because it depends upon conformity. To Believers, differing opinions are dangerous and threatening. Thinkers have dispelled all such fears by relying instead upon their own accelerating ability to parse through bullshit and face the truth while ever moving forward into an exciting future.

This is a pivotal, monumental trend. It is transforming civilization itself. In an upcoming essay, I will explore the transition from Civilization 1.0: The Age of Conquest (of Belief) to Civilization 2.0: The Age of Collaborative Creation.

Please stay tuned… but turn off the damn TV!

Leave your comment


Required. Not published.

If you have one.