Friday, June 03, 2016

Olbermann: "Media Goes Too Easy on Donald Trump."

As with this.

It's Keith talking about The Donald, but certain of the points are just as applicable to the hometown rag.

Media Goes Too Easy on Donald Trump, by Keith Olbermann (Hollywood Reporter)

Polarization of news is not new, but its failure to ask the candidate tough questions — the ones that might cause him to refuse to call in to your morning show or provide hours of free TV content — will be the legacy of Campaign 2016.

Despite the Mad Men-quality institutional image campaign the nation has so effectively waged on itself since the middle of the 20th century, we haven't actually destroyed the sacred institution of objective American news media, without which we are lost in this presidential campaign. As the unprecedented specter of Donald John Trump, Supergenius, rises up around us like some orange fog, we are not unequipped to describe and report on him because we have traded our golden tradition of neutrality for a handful of magic point-of-view beans. It's a simple but hidden truth: The news has almost always been like this.

It's sad but true. Those among us old enough to recall a time before the Internet now must grudgingly concede that fair and objective journalism was a blip lasting five or maybe six recent decades amid the long history of humankind. When money is god, objectivity cannot survive, can it?

If all the belching and bellowing voices in that marketplace are in ideological disagreement about Trump or any other candidate real or fantastic, ranging from Hillary Clinton to St. Francis of Assisi, we're fine. It's unintentional but entirely suitable that the phrase "polite political discourse" includes a homophone for the word "coarse." But if these Crank-It-to-11 competitors all find themselves in agreement that Trump, and the coverage of Trump, and the blowback to Trump, and the advertising dollars spent on the coverage of the blowback to Trump, constitute a cash explosion in a dying journalistic ecosystem whose healthiest part had been broadcast and cable news until recently there came a plague of locusts called cord-cutters — then we've got trouble.

For so long as local governments pour money into struggling local entertainment platforms costuming as news, where's the incentive to ask hard questions of local government?

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