Freedom of the Press
It is a fundamental principle of our Republic to support and encourage a free press. The First Amendment was included to ensure that government was restrained enough to allow for the freedom of expression that comes from a free press.
But along with freedom comes responsibility. “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.” Used properly, it is the best way to counter a government and hold it responsible to the people short of outright revolution.
But the responsibility for the press is to somehow tell the story without bias.
At least that is the way it is supposed to work.
History is filled with examples of the manipulation of the press. Many scholars point to the self-serving interests of some major publishing giants that led to the war with Spain. The rush to print stories about the explosion on the Battleship Maine were instrumental in driving the nation to a war fever. Subsequent investigations that revealed that the explosion was probably not cause by a mine were never given the same amount of press. Not that it would have mattered. Mr. Hearst got his little war and a series of events were set into motion that still haunt the western hemisphere.
There is an amazing resource published by the Library of Congress that contains many newspapers from the history of the country in electronic form.
You can search by date and key words and find many instances of how the press portrayed the situation of the day for all of the years in the collection. It is fascinating to read some of the old papers and see things from the perspective of history.
The dirty little secret is that while having a free press is critical to any nation, a press that is unencumbered by oversight also is not always bound to the truth. That plays on both sides of the political aisle.
The American Press is also a business so many times the papers would try and outdo themselves to get a story out first, even if it might not be fully vetted. With the advent of radio and television, this became an even more challenging environment. The press only survives if someone spends a nickel on the paper. Radio and TV realized this very quickly and learned how to grow by the sale of sponsorships and advertisements. The explosive growth of social media on the internet has destroyed any illusion of balance. Shadow banning and restricting only some voices is one of the greatest threats to our Republic in its history.
Political advertisements were included in this basket of profits.
Even subtle attempts by both sides to regulate the power of the political ads is mostly circumvented with modern methods to skirt the rules. Where it gets really complicated is when the lines of bias are blurred beyond recognition. Focus group developed advertisements combined with partisan “news” organizations can drive the country in directions no one once thought possible.
Along came President Trump.
Arguably one of the best showmen of the ages, he decided to go against the grain and launch a truth bomb that everyone knew but most just ignored. The press is cesspool and would support whatever ideological belief they felt was in their best interest.
What President Trump has relearned however is the old Mark Twain advice:
The press has continued to play the innocent victim in all of the conflicts.
There is still a shadow game played where they feel they are the only ones who know the truth but in fact it is only the truth that they want you to believe. The proof of that is that despite some pretty amazing achievements, they continue to try and portray the leader of the free world as a “buffoon”.
How about some balance for a change? What about that “buffoon”?
- The buffoon in the White House just brokered two Middle East Peace Accords, something that 71 years of political intervention and endless war failed to produce. Arabs and Israelis talking face to face and building relationships.
- The buffoon in the White House is the first president that has not engaged us in a foreign war since Eisenhower.
- The buffoon in the White House has had the greatest impact on the economy, bringing jobs, and lowering unemployment to the Black and Latino population of ANY other president. Ever.
- The buffoon in the White House has exposed the deep, widespread, and long-standing corruption in the FBI, the CIA, the NSA, and the Republican and Democratic parties.
- The buffoon in the White House turned NATO around and had them start paying their dues. That is billions with a B
- The buffoon in the White House neutralized the North Koreans, stopped them from developing a further nuclear capability, sending missiles toward Japan, and threatening the West Coast of the US.
- The Buffoon in the White House turned our relationship to the Chinese around, brought hundreds of businesses back to the US, and revived the economy. Hello
- The buffoon in the White House has accomplished the appointing of two Supreme Court Justices and close to 300 Federal Judges. (Unless the Democrats pull out some kind of magical untrue accusation, there will now be three Supreme Court Judges… shades of Kavenaugh)
- The buffoon in the White House lowered your taxes and caused your stock market to move to record levels over 100 times, positively impacting the retirements of tens of millions of citizens.
- The buffoon in the White House fast-tracked the development of a COVID Vaccine – it will be available within months – we still don’t have a vaccine for SARS, Bird Flu, Ebola, or a host of diseases that arose during previous administrations.
- The buffoon in the White House rebuilt our military which the Obama administration had crippled and had fired 214 key generals and admirals in his first year of office.
- The buffoon in the White House uncovered widespread pedophilia in the government and in Hollywood. The buffoon in the White House is exposing worldwide sex trafficking of minors and bringing children home to their families.
- The buffoon in the White House. Works for free and has lost well over 2 billion dollars of his own money in serving – and done all of this and much more in the face of relentless undermining and opposition from people who are threatened because they know they are going to be exposed as the criminals that they are if he is re-elected.
I get it, you don’t like him. How special of you. He is serving you and ALL the American people. What are you doing besides calling him names?”
If you owned a company and needed someone to run it – would you pick Biden or Trump?
The one who spent 47 years in DC and did none of these achievements or the guy who spent 47 months getting the work done?
Vote for the best guy ….. even if his brashness hurt your feelings!
Think about your grandchildren – at least the ones you like!