So now that there’s competition, all of a sudden this new media which gives us the definition of big media, this new media is a threat to democracy. So what does this mean? It means it’s a threat to their hold on the power of this country. That’s what they’re afraid of. That’s not what they’re saying in their platform verbatim, but that’s what they are afraid of. When Democratic Party takes up its platform next week at the presidential nominating convention in Boston, one of the planks it will consider is media concentration, because the one-sentence statement’s buried deep in the 41-page document. “Its supporters contend that it is a recognition by the party that big media is becoming a threat to democracy. The proposed platform plank states because our democracy thrives on public access to diverse sources of information, from multiple sources, we support measures to ensure diversity, competition, and localism in media ownership.” This is really directed at two people: Clear Channel and Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation.
I know, throw me in there, too, but I mean they’re upset at the competition. It’s that they don’t hold their monopoly anymore, and that doesn’t give them an automatic hold on this country. That’s what they fear. H.R., my chief of staff — nicknamed after H.R. Haldeman, “nobody gets to me” — made an interesting point. He remembered back after the ’94 election, and I remember this, too, now; I just can’t remember if there was a single source for this, but do you folks remember the ’94 election the left, in the media, and some Democrats began to wonder aloud, “If there’s just too much democracy going on out there, too much democracy going on out there, too many voices, confusing everybody.” You know, there’s never been more diversity in the American media than there is today, and leave it to the Democrats to write a plank of their platform complaining there’s less. It’s just the exact opposite. They are afraid of all the diversity because it is competition and challenges them, and let’s take a look at what’s happened here to big media.
First, we had campaign finance reform, and the primary purpose of campaign finance reform was not to take the money out of politics, because nothing is going to take the money out of politics. The primary reason for campaign finance reform was empower the media before elections, because they don’t have to buy commercial time. They are it. They can theoretically do anything that looks or sounds like a commercial, but not call it that and have to pay for it at all. I mean you can have these media shows, have guest after guest saying whatever they want to say. Somebody gets maligned on one of these shows, a candidate 30-or-60 days before a primary or general cannot go out and buy an ad to refute it, and so the media has been empowered by campaign finance reform. So the media reform that’s actually taken place here has been to empower mainstream media, not to diminish it in any way, shape, manner, or form.
RUSH: Bob in Madison, Georgia. Welcome to the EIB Network. Hi.
CALLER: Southern hospitality dittos, Rush.
RUSH: Thank you, sir. Nice to have you on the program.
CALLER: Something you did today accentuates the opportunity that we all have as Americans and should take better advantage of: the greatest fear of the Democrats is an informed voter. Your segment earlier about Sandy Berger and his situation illuminates why Democrats are considering a plank in their platform regarding the effect of media on our form of government. The fact that you and your crack research staff could instantaneously research the Clinton administration’s debate on the leak law and that Berger did not want to tighten the leak law, is what strikes fear in the heart of the Democrats. You instantaneously refreshed our memories or educated us firsthand about the facts of the leak tightening debate. I would guess that most people had no idea that that ever took place.
RUSH: I think you’re right about that.
CALLER: So, in short, the Democrats count on American voters having short memories of their actions, their votes, and their public statements, and we as Americans just need to take better advantage of the opportunities to educate ourselves. But again, it is just interesting that the Berger situation should happen right now at the same time that the Democrats are trying to advance a plank in their platform to in effect debilitate our ability to educate ourselves.
RUSH: Exactly right. They want one story out there, and they want the story or version or slant to be theirs, and they don’t like all this competing media. They can’t compete, folks, when you get right down to it. Thanks for the call out there, Bob. I’m glad you waited. When you get right down to it, they cannot compete in the arena of ideas. When you hear these libs call here, they won’t even admit they’re libs, number one — and number 2, they don’t dare discuss the substance of ideas or policy. They have to go for the personal destruction or the effort to discredit those who they fear, because they can’t win the policy. When you have liberals who shrink from the word “liberal,” I mean, you get an idea where they really are. They’re not capable of defending it because they haven’t had to because they own the media. The media is just an echo chamber for them, and so when you find people that are afraid to compete — and that’s exactly what this is.
When they say, “Too much media out there and it’s threatening democracy,” they’re looking to shut down alternative points of view. This is exactly like political correctness is. You know, the Democrats and liberals love to run around saying, “Well, we believe in freedom of speech. Say what you want to say,” blah, blah. Except in front of them. If you say things they don’t want to hear, it’s not a matter of them doing something about it and leaving or turning off the radio. Nope. They have to silence you. Political correctness is about making sure people don’t say things liberals don’t want to hear. So instead of calling somebody a window washer because it’s demeaning, we have to call ’em “vision control coordinators.” Instead of saying somebody’s fat or obese, we’re going to say, “Nope, they are,” What is it? “Gravitationally challenged.” Those are just some of the crazy examples, but you know what I mean when I talk about the whole political correctness business. Political correctness says, “You can’t speak the truth to that or that or that because we don’t want to hear it,” so it’s actually censorship in a way.
<*ICON*>More of Rush’s Original Coverage…
<a target=new href=”//home/daily/site_071304/content/eib_interview.member.html”>(EIB Interview: William F. Buckley, Jr.)</a>