The mainstream media doesn’t really like Democrat presidential nominee Hillary Clinton. Mostly because she has for years chosen to ignore press conferences and decline to answer questions from the press. You can add to that they know whatever she tells them is most likely to be a lie and that each succeeding response is likely to also be a lie.
But the mainstream media loathes Donald Trump. While the media cites all of their favorite “politically correct” rationale for their loathing, the greater evidence is that they loathe him because he has shined a bright light on their bias, their failures, their hypocrisy and their corruption. The once lordly perception of the mainstream media as the “government watchdogs” has been shattered and the evidence mounts daily that they are simply propagandists for the Democrat Party. According to an April 17, 2016 Associated Press article, the mainstream media’s credibility lies in tatters – approximately equal to the politicians they cover:
“Trust in the news media is being eroded by perceptions of inaccuracy and bias, fueled in part by Americans’ skepticism about what they read on social media.“Just 6 percent of people say they have a lot of confidence in the media, putting the news industry about equal to Congress and well below the public’s view of other institutions. In this presidential campaign year, Democrats were more likely to trust the news media than Republicans or independents.”
That last sentence is important. Democrats are more likely to trust the news media than Republicans BECAUSE the media is adhering to the Democrat line. They are less likely to report negative stories about Democrats (particularly Ms. Clinton) and more likely to report the “talking points” from the Democrats without critical thinking or examination. To be clear the news media is just the opposite when it comes to Republicans and is the primary reason that Republicans hold them in such universal contempt.
But the mainstream media has even more reason to despise Mr. Trump. He brought them ratings. He lined their pockets with profits. Every time Mr. Trump appeared on television ratings went up. Every time ratings went up, advertising dollars increased because of the increased ratings. They were rolling in clover. And in doing so they were forced to acknowledge that they are just as greedy as the businessmen and women they love to criticize – that they were willing to sacrifice principle for profit. How excruciating it must have been to provide Mr. Trump with nearly $2 Billion of free advertising (earned media) during the primary and general election seasons so that they could increase their profits. No wonder the mainstream media loathes him. The “guardians of freedom” turned out to be jaded profiteers and Mr. Trump used every opportunity available to point this out. The mainstream media is as corrupt, bias and dishonest as Mr. Trump has portrayed them.
It has been a steep decline in trust and admiration for the mainstream media since the Golden Years of Watergate when the press brought down a sitting president – Richard M. Nixon. Now the shoes once worn by the likes of Walter Lippman, Walter Cronkite, Chet Huntley, David Brinkley, and even Bob Woodard are filled by petty little sycophants like George Stephanopoulos, Brian Williams, Lester Holt, Jake Tapper, and Chuck Todd. So lacking in professionalism are many of them that they can be seen begging for praise for “dissing” Mr. Trump and his supporters.
Is there an opportunity for the media to regain the prestige attendant to the title “government watchdog?” Of course there is the opportunity. In fact, given the litany of abuses by Ms. Clinton and her corruption of those who surround her, the opportunities abound. It isn’t even hard work. In fact, in many instances it is just a matter of verifying the information provided by Wikileaks to ensure that those who provided the purloined information did not doctor it. Even the intellectually challenged among the mainstream media can simply ask Ms. Clinton’s campaign manager John Podesta to provide evidence that any of the critical emails hacked from his office have been altered. Absent such information it is safe to assume that what l has provided, albeit illegally, is accurate.
But the better question is whether the mainstream media will seize the opportunity? If Ms. Clinton wins the presidential election the media will revel in their role of bringing down the hated Mr. Trump. But then what?
Then they are stuck with the single most corrupt, lying, money-grubbing person to ever enter the White House. Will they continue to refuse to cover her corruption that is clearly there before them? Or will they seek to recover their credibility by laying out the breadth and depth of her corruption in hopes of forcing her from office – just like they did with Mr. Nixon.
They could, but they’ll need to hire some better journalists than they have now.