Once considered a fringe proposal, the liberals’ media bailout is closer than ever to becoming a law thanks to the $3.5 trillion spending bill.
It’s common for a president to spend the first year in office rewarding those who supported his candidacy with all the spoils that federal largess can afford, and many it cannot.
So it’s not surprising that liberals are once again pushing for a media bailout.
It’s a fit reward for those publishers who so lavishly supported Biden and punished Trump in 2020. Media coverage of each campaign was largely responsible for Biden crossing the finish line victorious as he campaigned from his basement and to mostly empty rallies.
The media bailout, like Obamacare once was, has been a long time coming.
The media bailout idea was first floated after the 2008 economic meltdown that showed us just how divorced from their readers and watchers the media in America had become. The economic downturn, precipitated layoffs and mergers, and other activity in media threatened the media’s complacency.
The idea came back with a vengeance in 2020, when, once again, an economic downturn, this time due to COVID, revealed that the media couldn’t make it, because readers and watchers don’t think they should pay for views they disagree with.
— Walter Pearson (@Wmpear) September 16, 2020
“Of course, the newspapers claim their bias isn’t the problem,” Accuracy in Media president Adam Guillette said at the time. “They blame the internet. Countless business models have been upended by the internet. Should we bail out each of them? Should we have bailed out stone tablet makers after the invention of the printing press?”
AIM ran a petition drive against a media bailout in 2020 that netted 50,787 online signatures. In addition, AIM sent out action alerts that generated phone calls and emails to Congress.
Fortunately, then-Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell responded to the petitions hand-delivered to his Kentucky office by Guillette on behalf of AIM members. McConnell sided with common sense in stopping the proposal.
But liberals know that that the money that they propose to bail out media outlets is a drop in the bucket compared to other spending schemes they have proposed, and nothing compared to the $3.5 trillion in spending contained in the bill.
“But think about what you and I stand to lose,” AIM asked in an action alert last year. “If these radical Left newspapers fail, it’s entirely possible that better alternatives can take their place. If they are propped up by our tax dollars, they’ll learn there are no repercussions for behaving like activists rather than journalists.”
Indeed, the lesson here seems to be that the media can and should kowtow to whoever controls the government because these are the people who control the ability to financially reward the press.
And far from speaking truth to power, media will be continually asking the government to define for them just exactly what the truth is, as Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg recently did, so the government subsidies keep rolling in.