Essense - September 10, 2019
"Their ability to maintain “monopolistic control to siphon off advertising revenues from news organizations” is why week after week people in media are complaining of layoffs. This issue is further complicated by the reality that “corporate conglomerates and hedge fund vultures have bought and consolidated beleaguered local newspapers and slashed their newsrooms—all while giving executives big payouts.”
Last month, the Bernie Sanders campaign made its displeasure with the media clear.
“There seems to be a direct correlation between the media’s coverage of polls and Bernie Sanders’s specific standing in those polls,” Jeff Weaver, a Sanders adviser who managed his 2016 presidential bid, reportedly said in a conference call with press members. “The better the number is in the poll, the less coverage he’s received, and the worse he does, the more it receives.” As the *Washington Post’*s Dave Weigel noted, “Weaver had the receipts.”
A month later, there are still articles with headlines like “Why Bernie is stalled” that once again speak to purported doom for the Sanders campaign citing select polls that don’t hold as much weight as some would have you believe if for no other reason than they need your clicks and views. And in articles like these, they offer unsolicited advice such as Sanders “would do well to position himself more clearly inside the fold of the Democratic Party, let go of some of his resentments, and instruct his surrogates to strike a different tone.”
If Bernie Sanders suddenly sounded like your generic Democrat with a disposition deemed “more pleasant” by the political media class, he wouldn’t be Bernie Sanders. He’d be like the white dude running from Montana who has no chance of winning the nomination or that senator from Colorado who also has no shot at getting the nomination. I know their names, but most Americans don’t, hence the emptiness of this writer’s suggestion.
On an anecdotal level, I saw an elder Black woman – an auntie, if you will – recently rocking a 2016 Bernie Sanders for president tee. I didn’t stop to ask if that was just something she grabbed from her ultra progressive grandson, but either way, given the shape of her wig – too jazzy for church so more fitting for a retirement party or hottest hole in the wall club for elders – I can confirm she wanted to be noticed, thus, a good sign for Bernie Sanders.
Does this mean Bernie Sanders is surging? No, but hell, the same can be said of many of the polls now that are largely centered on name recognition. And if not name recognition, regurgitation — say, cable news pundits repeatedly telling viewers that Joe Biden is the only old white man who can defeat President Trump next year.
So, in many respects, I can understand the issue Bernie Sanders has with corporate media. That said, I assume that unsolicited advice about Team Sanders is rooted in the campaign’s very pointed criticism of the Washington Post specifically.
At his town hall last month in Wolfeboro, N.H., Sanders mentioned that Amazon doesn’t pay taxes which gave way to criticism about coverage of his campaign.
“See, I talk about that all of the time,” Sanders explained. “And then I wonder why The Washington Post — which is owned by Jeff Bezos, who owns Amazon — doesn’t write particularly good articles about me. I don’t know why. But I guess maybe there’s a connection. Maybe we helped raise the minimum wage at Amazon to 15 bucks an hour as well.”Unsurprisingly, many journalists took issue with Sanders’ insinuation. ...
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