Americans Are Running Away From the Corporate Media

Win or lose - Monday night was a great night for Bernie Sanders and his supporters.

Bernie pointed out in his speech Monday night that the people of Iowa sent a profound message to the rest of the country by turning out in droves to support Bernie's vision for a "political revolution."

He's right - the people of Iowa have sent a profound message to the political and media establishment in this country.

So how did Bernie Sanders go from polling at around 5% in Iowa when he announced his candidacy - to only losing because of a series of coin tosses?

It's because people are actually able to hear his message - whether the establishment wants them to or not.

It's because he talks about the issues that impact the people who used to make up the middle class in this country.

And, because it resonates with people who have never participated in an election - people who look at our bought-off politicians and have been disgusted with politics in America.

The truth is, Bernie Sanders wouldn't be neck and neck with Hillary Clinton right now if people were forced to depend on the major corporate news networks. They wouldn't even know who he is except for the fact that he's over 70 years old and a self-described "democratic socialist."

But thanks to the internet and social media - it's probably the first election ever that voters can completely go around the corporate media to learn about the issues that they care about - and where the candidates stand on them.

Seriously, Bernie Sanders received LESS THAN 10 minutes of coverage between CBS Evening News, NBC Nightly News, and ABC World News, COMBINED up until December.

And it hasn't been just a blackout on Bernie: it's a blackout on the issues that American voters care about.

The corporate media refuses to talk about the Transpacific Partnership.

They refuse to talk about Citizens United or the corrupting influence of money in politics - or the fact that the Koch brothers' network of political operatives is bigger than the entire Republican party - or that they'll spend millions this year on political ads for the corporate media to air and thus profit from.

And they refuse to talk about net neutrality or any of the attempts by the major internet providers and media conglomerates to force legislation to give them monopolistic control over the internet.

Fortunately - and largely because net neutrality is still in place - people in this country have more access to the internet than ever, and they can still learn about these issues on their own.

Thanks to "new media" outlets that stand outside the corporate status quo - people can find out about issues that the corporate media simply refuses to talk about.

Thanks to outlets like The Intercept, Vice Media, Salon, Alternet, Truthout, Free Speech TV and RTTV - among many others - people can seek out and learn about the candidates that the corporate media deems "fringe" - like Bernie Sanders.

Internet forums and discussion boards like Reddit and DemocraticUnderground serve as great places for people to share news stories and political speeches that might not make it onto the 24 hour networks - and to discuss those stories and speeches!.

Thanks to YouTube - we can actually look back and find videos of the candidates and what they said about particular issues in the past - we can find news reports that in the past would have been consigned to the dustbin of history - and we can leave comments and have discussions with others.

A lot of these things were around in 2008 - but now more people have access to the internet than ever before - and that means that more people than ever before can educate themselves about the issues that they care about.

We can make our own decisions based on what we've read, rather than just trusting what we saw on the 6 o'clock news on the local Fox affiliate.

It's not perfect. The internet is full of half-truths and outright lies. It's full of people who just want to provoke arguments and insult people who disagree with them.

But it's also provided an outlet for new media and a platform for honest discussion - and its wrested control away from the major mainstream corporate networks and newspapers.

And just like Bernie said Monday: the caucus results have sent a profound message to the corporate media.

It's not just that the political establishment and media establishment were wrong about Bernie's viability as a candidate.

It's that the establishment media isn't in the driver's seat of American politics anymore - and that's a really good thing for our democracy.

Comments

bollivar 6 years 35 weeks ago
#1

Thom. You hit the nail on the media head. I can't imgine anyone voting for Criminal Hillaral. Government history is all about change when there exist a huge gap between the haves and have nots. There must me a change, even a radical change and Bernie is the only one that will make these changes. When I was in college in 1983, the gap between the wealthy and the poor was groing at 17% anually. As a country, we are way off balance.

Change does not come easy for those who are used to buying politicians to get more wealth.

Origslammer1's picture
Origslammer1 6 years 35 weeks ago
#2

Way to go Bernie! .... Damn gald he's running .... thanks toThom Hartmann/ FSTV/Democracy Now and affiliates for the pump up.... It's refreshing and encouraging to see Amercias new generation of youth taking the helm.. They're not as stupid as their parents who bought the narratives of popular media and this narrative for constant war to steal the worlds resources for themselves in the name of American Interest, that the masses get no share of.

Now we just need Americas new generation of youth to tune in too Professor Richard Wolff... Like in the Movie Terminator "Capitalism is the VIRUS", this is why it was forbidden by Divine in scripture as a financial tool for trade a.k.a USURY

10 Atta-Boys to Bernie!

Dr PeterPalms's picture
Dr PeterPalms 6 years 35 weeks ago
#3

Its impossible to communicate with Bernie by email. None of his daily messages to me offer to accept any my comments from anyone. Here is the everything important he is still missing.

http://seekingalpha.com/user/25783813/instablog/full_index

http://seekingalpha.com/account/authorboard/instablog

effie5555 6 years 35 weeks ago
#4

I have attended countless Democratic meeting where they have bemoaned the absence of the youth and asked how can we attract them? How about giving them a candidate they believe in? Bernie brought out the voters the Democrats are looking for. If the Democrats ignore them and their interests, we'll go back to the 20% participation we've had for several decades. They want Bernie and don't want Hillary. The institutional Democrats believe they can substitute Hillary and it will all be good. They are wrong. Bernie will also get the cross over voters that Hillary won't. I have a Republican brother and an Independent brother. Both are going to register as Democrats so they can vote for Bernie in the NM Primary. They will not vote for Hillary. Though anecdotal, they represent those who will determine this election.

wslifko 6 years 35 weeks ago
#5

Excellent article but I would have to say at the opening -

Win or lose - Monday night was a great night for Bernie Sanders and his supporters.

I believe that this was a great night for the U.S. President Obama's first presidential campaign showed us that if we came together and stayed together, we could win. Bernie has harnessed that same power so now we're simply replicating what we did 8 years ago.

Something like this happening once is a phenomenon. Happening twice we now know that we've returned to the roots of our political election system and how it was intended to be. Let's hope that we never forget again.

Win or lose - Monday night was a great night for Bernie Sanders and his supporters. - See more at: http://www.thomhartmann.com/blog/2016/02/americans-are-running-away-corporate-media#comment-form

cccccttttt 6 years 35 weeks ago
#6

Bernie has run a great campaign and used the alternative media to the max.

But there are still large masses of voters who get their sense of reality from TV.

Lets hope Bernie has a stratagy to reach them.

Hillary has obviously invested a lot of energy into her appearance, and appearance

counts for many votes in the TV medium.

ct

2950-10K's picture
2950-10K 6 years 35 weeks ago
#7

Never underestimate the destructive power of the Fox propaganda network. I have close friends and family that have been totally brainwashed by the hogwash dispensed by this highly effective Fascist weapon. Professional intervention well beyond my ability will be required to bring them back to fact based political reality.

I'm not trying to be funny here, I'm dead serious, they're really brainwashed, and I have an intense hatred for Fox and the corpse media in general for doing this to otherwise very nice but vulnerable people. There's nothing funny about watching those close to you vote themselves into poverty, while at the same time making extreme concentration of wealth easier for the Fascist few.

I'd like to call attention to a recent propanganda maneuver committed by the corpse media . A few outlets were describing the lawless and well armed militia in Oregon as "Occupiers"????? This was an attempt to defame the very patriotic Occupy Movement. The Oregon Militia participants are the antithesis of the true Occupiers who participated in protests a few years ago.

RLTOWNSLEY's picture
RLTOWNSLEY 6 years 35 weeks ago
#8

A Wikipedia definition of Neoliberalism: "Beginning in the 1970s and 1980s, its advocates supported extensive economic liberalization policies such as privatization, fiscal austerity, deregulation, free trade, and reductions in government spending in order to enhance the role of the private sector in the economy. Neoliberalism is famously associated with the economic policies introduced by Margaret Thatcher in the United Kingdom and Ronald Reagan in the United States".

This is the philosophy that it's true believers brought with them when they took full control of the DNC leadership in the late eighties and where they remain in charge today as they continue to back the Clintonestas that rose to prominence at that same point in time !

Considering the above definition, are we really expected to believe that there's a broad difference between today's DNC and the current GOP ? Bernie is the first Democrat in over two and a half decades to demand a return to the Progressive values that have long been suppressed by the Neoliberal inspired leadership of the DNC. No mystery as to why major Corporations and wealthy oligarchs have been so successful at expanding their dominance within our country given that both have had the full unquestionable cooperation of both major political parties !

dianhow 6 years 35 weeks ago
#9

Those of us who love Bernie Must NOT stay home on election day if Hillary becomes the candidate . That will add up to a vote for radical anti middle class GOP ( anti fair wage, anti women, cuts in our earned SS, cuts in education, more Fat cat tax cuts , loopholes, subsides...likely MORE war profiteering. Bush Cheney wars made war HUGELY PROFITABLE Taxpayers paid trillions People died or were maimed. One look at GOP policies and we know they have NO family values Cruz is almost fanatic when speaking to his' loyal fans. Neo Nazi's support Cruz ! Cruz's wife is a Goldman Sachs fat cat . I do NOT believe that God wants more unwanted, uncared for babies to be born, some who are beaten or neglected. IF you hate abortions Then DO not have one. But women must not be forced to go back to back alley unsafe abortions BE responsible Use birth control.

Alan Lunn's picture
Alan Lunn 6 years 34 weeks ago
#10

Just this afternoon I did a Gallup "survey" on presidential candidates. I went through each candidate they wanted information about -- Trump, Cruz, Rubio, and Hillary -- and the survey was over.

In the little box for additional comments at the end I wrote: "Where's Bernie? Don't you want to know what I think about him?"

I thought, "Wow. They left Bernie out? That's crazy!" He's the only one of the five for whom I would have had glowing responses. If this isn't a blackout, what is?

Aliceinwonderland's picture
Aliceinwonderland 6 years 34 weeks ago
#11

I love it when Bernie stands up to the billionaire class and says: "You can't have it all!" and "If you can't stop your greed, we will stop it for you!" I’ve waited all my life to see a candidate in a run for the White House who sounds like that.

Now that's what I call presidential. Here's a man who loves his country, a real patriot whose ambition is nation-building not empire-building. This is a leader who aspires to wage war on poverty instead of a war on the poor. To those kleptocrats and entitled brats who benefit from this toxic quagmire, extracting profits off our sweat, our hide and our flesh, Bernie’s message is blunt and direct. “ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!

There's no better example to illustrate what a great statesman looks like and sounds like. Real leadership isn’t for sale. Someone like Bernie, not beholden to the almighty Koch Brothers for example, or to Big Pharma’s CEOs or the OILgarchs; someone in a position of influence both willing and able to fight for us. That is a rare moment, the kind that makes history. It is nothing to take for granted. Quite the contrary, they are to be savored, amplified and played out to their fullest potential, maximizing their positive impact on people’s lives and those of future generations.

This is what visionary leadership is really about: supporting the struggles of “ordinary” people towards social mobility, economic justice and a fair share of the wealth they’ve created. The kind of leadership that sees to it our hard-earned tax money is used to OUR benefit and not transnational corporations and/or a tiny clique of billionaires. Leadership whose mission is to protect the rights and interests of the majority who are not wealthy or privileged and must work to survive…. What we want is to live the kind of life that can only be had with wages that actually support families, along with a robust commons and reliable, secure social safety net. For these are the things that provide the very foundation each of us needs, just to make a life, and that keep societies civilized.

When government is hijacked by anti-government imposters who claim no one has basic rights to anything- not even necessities like water, sanitation and healthcare- and legislate accordingly; when these same political hacks outsource middle class manufacturing jobs while “every man for himself” is a creed those in power want us small fry to live and struggle by... well then, we’ve got a problem. And I call it "taxation without representation".

Despite whatever stability, comforts and conveniences you now enjoy, that “stability” is just one injury or illness away from imploding. You could be among those next unfortunate souls destined to lose everything you ever worked for, maybe even life itself. I know this sounds extreme, but we are living in extreme times. And Bernie Sanders is that once-in-a-lifetime candidate both willing and able to combat this problem at its very source, and fight for us so we can create and have the kind of society we Americans deserve.

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