Legacy media is the lion in winter. Coughing and cursing, it feverishly plots the demise of its competition even as the power to do so slips from its withered grasp.
Former juggernauts such as NBC are not dead yet, so they wield what power they still have recklessly. All it took was an accusation. Not even from peacock brass, but an activist/journalist who supports Black Lives Matter…and Google demonetized both Zero Hedge and the Federalist. The allegation? Racism, of course.
To anyone who regularly reads the content of either site, the charge is patently false. One could fairly accuse ZeroHedge of overly gloomy financial predictions, or of stirring the American political pot. Racism? No. The Federalist is even more buttoned-down, rarely straying from the straight and narrow of conservative reporting on culture, politics, and religion.
At least demonetization was the original claim. Conservative Twitter exploded, then the backpedaling began. The narrative gained focused as yesterday afternoon wore on. The specific charge emerged: the comment sections of the two sites traffic in racist thought.
This is the equivalent of charging the owners of a building for graffiti scrawled upon its walls by vandals.
ZeroHedge wrote an excellent piece in its defense, pointing out how Google and NBC worked hand in glove to “materially harm” the two sites. ZeroHedge is 11 years old, both a creator of original content and an aggregator. The Federalist is six years old. They aren’t unknown quantities. To the contrary, they are two of the most important websites in the world for true conservatives.
If you think that’s hyperbole, consider that many of the old standards are compromised. The National Review has slipped into a NeverTrump malaise. Fox News is schizoid, veering from liberal-to-moderate daytime personalities to Tucker at night. Those who thought the departure of Shep Shepard would lead to more conservative reporting were surely surprised to see Donna Brazile make a daytime nest in the House That Murdoch Built. The once omnipotent Drudge Report is a punchline after veering to the left.
Sean Davis, co-founder of the Federalist, notes that NBC is the network that “coddled Harvey Weinstein and Matt Lauer”. That’s true, but this is different. In those cases, it was the top brass covering for sexual crimes and activities of the mogul and an employee anchorman. In this case, a journo-activist, Adele-Momoko Fraser, sought to cancel the conservative sites on her own.
This tweet was deleted after the controversy started, only to be replaced without the BLM support line.
As this story unfolded, a t-shirt was refolded and put in the very bottom of a drawer. Oklahoma State football coach Mike Gundy was forced into a ridiculous apology for the crime of wearing a t-shirt.
Gundy, who was about to depart on a fishing trip, was snapped wearing a One America News Network shirt. OAN has grown in prominence over the course of the Donald Trump presidency, most recently when Trump mentioned the network in relation to a protester falling and injuring himself after being pushed by a member of the Buffalo Police Emergency Response Team.
The uproar over that tweet branded OAN forever in the minds of progressives, so much so that a coach who wears a t-shirt with its logo and who works with young black men was accused of…you guessed it, racism.
Here’s the Rube Goldberg-device logic involved in this spurious accusation:
- Picture of Gundy posted to social media, black Oklahoma State football player Chuba Hubbard sees it and comments that things at his school must “CHANGE”.
- Media latch onto the story based on their feelings about OAN. Trump likes OAN = OAN bad.
- Gundy folds to the pressure of the moment. In the wake of the death of Saint Floyd, it’s best not to toe the line.
- By caving in, Gundy manages to reinforce the idea that he was in fact wearing the shirt in some silent gesture of solidarity with those who saw inconsistencies in the behavior of activist Martin Gugino during the Buffalo police interaction.
- “Activists” everywhere believe they have won a victory.
The Sober Take
Now that the dust has settled following this multi-front skirmish, what can we deduce?
First, legacy media is scared. They know that greater swaths of the public have caught on to their corporate ownership, blatant liberal bias, ties to US intelligence, and coordinated narrative management. So many Americans at home during lockdown–just as the media machine was spinning its hardest in order to sell COVID panic–has opened untold numbers of eyes.
CNN has been exposed by Project Veritas. Leaked audio of A New York Times newsroom meeting was devastating to the Times. NBC spiked the biggest sex scandal story in years, and that was all before the virus hit. In the meantime, alternative media has matured, found its footing.
It’s telling that sites like OAN (and the Federalist, and ZeroHedge, and for that matter, CDMedia) spring up in the absence of true conservative reporting by legacy sources.
Mainstream media is actively trying to deplatform, cancel, or smear any conservative alternative media before the November election. The next several months will determine whether or not we have a free press, and what steps need to be taken to break up technological monopolies which threaten the First Amendment, such as Google.
It’s not just alt media that’s under attack, it’s the US Constitiution. What was once a warning, what sounded like hyperbole, is real and present.
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