Thursday, April 05, 2007

The Amazing Race

Seems like every time I check the news online or turn on the radio, I hear about the record-setting fund raising that is going on for the Presidential race in 2008. Which is like 20 months away still, or darn close to it. Dire predictions abound for those candidates who aren't pulling in the big dough.

I'm not buying it. Yes, I know that money can be exchanged for goods and services (where would I be without Homer Simpson to educate me?). Yes, I know that money will buy ad time and commercials for politicians to hammer the opposition. But since when has money ever voted? Isn't that still up to regular folks like you and me?

There's sort of a self-fulfilling trap that people can fall into here, and the real guilty party is the media. When headlines sensationalize the $25 million+ raised by both Hillary and Obama, the impression is created that it takes money - and really, that's the important thing - to become Chief Executive. People then begin to narrow the field in their own mind on who is and who isn't a viable candidate.

Here's the thing. A candidate who exhibits excellent character, strong support for the Constitution and can communicate with regular people (thus, being him- or herself a regular person) would make a darn-near unbeatable choice for office.

Then, there's this magical thing called the internet (put aside for a moment your natural objections about something invented by al-Gore. I have a strong hunch he didn't actually invent it. Yes, I know he says he did, but trust me on this one.). If the candidate and their ideals were both strong enough, a grass-roots base would spring up that would get the word out to potential voters. The internet can be a powerful, playing-field leveler to help the "little guys" fight big donor-sponsored candidates.

My point, I guess, is this: we're told an awful lot by the media who is and who isn't a viable candidate. Maybe we ought to consider the source.

Hat tip to Mom, for your comments on a prior post about the media. I was reflecting on your comment with respect to all the noise about fundraising when I picked up this train of thought.


Call Me Mom said...

Thanks for the tip of the hat. I'm still thinking about the problem of the media.

At the moment, I'm thinking about standards and accountability. Why hasn't whoever has been leaking classified information to the press been found and prosecuted yet?

In the early days of journalism, reporters and editors understood that their words could be directly responsible for taking a soldier's life and they were (mostly) respectful of the power they had in that respect. "Loose lips sink ships" was the slogan and we all understood that it was our fathers, brothers, husbands, uncles and sons on those ships. When did our lives become secondary in importance to getting the story- and not just any story, but the politically correct story the MSM wants?

There's a problem for Mr. Gingrich's American Solutions website - How can we get the media to adhere to true journalistic standards?

But I'll keep thinking about it too, just in case they don't come up with anything.

The Monarchist said...


Grandpa used to always say that - "loose lips sink ships." How is it that I had that instilled in me and there's an entire profession of full-grown adults that doesn't give a rip?

I guess what we're seeing happen with the continued strength of talk radio and the internet (including great blogs like Powerline) is a market-oriented backlash against the MSM. People have tired of getting hammered with the message and have sought out real news. Or, if it must be somewhat slanted, at least slanted in the direction that most regular people lean.

What'll it take to break the liberal stranglehold on the MSM (here I'm thinking of network television and newspapers)? Not sure it can be done. As long as readership remains high enough to support operations, they won't be forced to change.

Possibly, demographics might be the answer. My family doesn't get a paper, for example, but we get news. Younger generations use the internet to get their information, primarily (know any young people who don't have a phone other than their cell phone?).

If you're in the business of selling news (not papers), perhaps the day is not far off in which the ad revenues can't support the printing machines, labor, and distribution costs, and news providers have to compete for readers and advertisers all online.

In the meantime, we've just got to be vigilant and support alternative news sources, I guess.


P.S. Anyone seen the Outlaw, Josey Wales, lately?

michael hargis said...

"When headlines sensationalize the $25 million+ raised by both Hillary and Obama, the impression is created that it takes money - and really, that's the important thing - to become Chief Executive."

I think money is a pretty good way to keep score here. For one thing, it reflects how widespread the support is for a particular candidate. For another it illustrates how safe the candidate is considered to be by Really Big Money. RBM isn't as likely to back a presidential candidate who might do something crazy. It is why neither Alan Keyes nor Ralph Nader will ever be elected president.

The Monarchist said...

My point, I guess, was that all we hear about is money. Who has it. Who has raised the most. Who needs it. Nothing is mentioned about the character of the candidates nor their ideas, and yes, I acknowledge there will be a time for that.

I only question the impression that coverage like this creates, namely, all it takes to be President is money.


P.S. What do you mean Alan Keyes will never be elected President???? ;)

Sebosmile said...

Or worse, Alan Colmes... :shudder: