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JLeslie's avatar

What do you think about this editorial about the recent elections?

Asked by JLeslie (56048points) 1 week ago from iPhone

I recently went to a discussion led by the author of the article. The discussion was about propaganda (not the article) and we discussed the psychology behind propaganda and group think and he also seemed quite interested in the unconscious mind.

During the discussion he brought up he had recently written an article in our local online news source regarding the recent election.

He is a citizen of Switzerland, and lives in American as well in my community, I’m not sure if he is a US citizen. During his discussion it became obvious to me he is unhappy with Trump.

Here’s the article: https://www.villages-news.com/hollywood-and-the-mainstream-media-were-real-losers-in-midterm-elections/

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34 Answers

canidmajor's avatar

I think the article was far too general and biased for serious consideration.

rojo's avatar

Without disagreeing with his premise about the manipulation of the populace by the media in order to attain a particular outcome, I think he has oversimplified the cause of the Senate losses by failing to take into account several factors such as voter suppression, vote manipulation and gerrymandering, not to mention voter apathy, all of which produce favorable outcomes for Republican candidates even though the majority of the state population might not be favorable to their candidates (remember, we still have election fraud claims in North Carolina and lawsuits in Florida over the election process).
In addition, the Democrats had 26 seats up for re-election (actually, two were Independents who caucused with Democrats) while the Republicans had nine. The final tally, I believe was that while Republicans were able to wrest four seats from the Democrats (for a pick-up of 15.4%) while the Democrats won two of the nine Republican seats (22.2%), not that percentages matter as much as bodies.
On a nationwide scale I would refer you to this “article”:https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2018/12/john-dingell-how-restore-faith-government/577222/?fbclid=IwAR0j9buaJMbb2zb5udBv-0Ssh8ie_lDKdIFZlYJ7vUsn_-tWNRbqRrsi3ak by John Dingell in The Atlantic regarding why and how the Senate benefits the few over the many (hint: “California has almost 40 million people, while the 20 smallest states have a combined population totaling less than that. Yet because of an 18th-century political deal, those 20 states have 40 senators, while California has just two. “) so, it is obvious that as our dear leader so delicately put it, “The system is rigged”.

rojo's avatar

As for manipulation by the media, we have ample evidence of that both from Fox News and from MSNBC. Unfortunately, in the case of Fox, we also have Presidential manipulation.

seawulf575's avatar

I think he put into words what many people in this country are already understanding…that the liberal elite in this country are seeking to manipulate them. The MSM and the Hollywood figures have gotten entirely out of hand and many people have woken up to that. Trump might have a small part to do with that, since he was the one that really started hammering on the liberal media and their bias. But people are tired of the good old boy’s club in Washington DC. They are tired of career politicians that spend tons of time and money making sure they stay in office while they drift further and further from their constituency. People are waking up to the idea that just because a politician spends a lot of money doesn’t mean they are the best person for the job. They have woken up to the invectives (as the author of the article calls them) that are thrown out indiscriminately to try suppressing opposing opinions.

rojo's avatar

@seawulf575 I basically agree but feel that if you could drop the term “liberal” and just leave elite you would actually be 100% correct. The elite control all major political parties, the only difference is which clique controls which. Fighting between parties is just fighting between oligarchy and if you ain’t elite, you are cannon fodder. The more they can keep you and I fighting with each other, the easier it is to manipulate. People are tiring of this as is evidenced both by the Tea Party movement at one end of the spectrum, the Occupy movement at the other,

josie's avatar

I am fairly certain that not too many people are alive who remember Walter Lippman, or who are alive and even know who he was.

Certainly nobody bothers to discuss the debate between Lippman and John Dewey any more.

They should.

Love him or hate him, Donald Trump is what happens when people begin to think that folks like Walter Lippman might have had it wrong and want to do something about it.

Just sayin

seawulf575's avatar

@rojo, I will concede that most of the big news outlets are biased one way or the other and bias in our media is destructive. However, I think you need to concede that most of the big news outlets are liberal with very few being conservative. And Hollywood is mainly liberal as well. In fact those that are conservative are usually blackballed pretty well. AND the article was specifically pointing out this side as well.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Why do you think that “most of the big news outlets are liberal” @seawulf575?

JLeslie's avatar

As mentioned I was able to talk to him in person, but I hadn’t read this article yet.

I had already felt that the Democrats didn’t really have a ton to celebrate about, since midterm elections typically swing over to the other party in the house when the executive branch and congress have had total control for a couple of years.

As far as states like Florida, it’s a swing state, the election was very close. The Broward ballot was not ideal and should be addressed, it’s very unfortunate. I don’t know if the result would have been different I haven’t seen the statistics for the no votes they were concerned about on that ballot.

In my area the Democrat club organized to offer free rides to the polls for the two weeks during early voting, and only a hand full of people took a ride.

I disagree with him about Oprah, I think she still has an effect, or can have an effect on elections. I have blamed her in the past for Obama’s won in the primaries, and in the end in the presidentual election, but I think the primaries most importantly.

The author and I did very much agree on one thing: the attempt to manipulate is too overt of late. He argued that very effective propaganda people don’t really know or see they are being fed specific information to control them.

I think both political parties and many news outlets are guilty of trying to steer the populous in a direction.

rojo's avatar

You want a clear picture of media manipulation you just have to take a look back at the lead up to the Gulf War or, for that matter, any war. And you can bet that any time you start seeing the same news on Fox that you see on MSNBC the government has its dirty little propaganda hands in the mix and are pushing you in a particular direction.
Wonder why we have seen such little news coverage of the French riots here in the US? Is it really because we are all raptly focused on the Bush funeral or because “they” don’t want us to get any ideas?

JLeslie's avatar

@rojo So, what exactly do you think the government is doing to control the media when it comes to things like the French riots?

Dutchess_III's avatar

I guess it depends on what you are looking for, @rojo. Google populates our newsfeeds according to the things we have indicated we are most interested in.

KNOWITALL's avatar

I completely agree with the article.

Even on a local level, there’s a LOT the general public isn’t privy to in regards to control and politics. It’s actually kind of disconcerting to be a part of something like that, for me.

seawulf575's avatar

@Dutchess_III Think about it…CNN, MSNBC, NBC, CBS, ABC, NYT, WaPo, NPR, BBC, The Guardian…all left leaning. On the right from major outlets you have Fox, WSJ, and Washington Times. And the WaTimes is not all that huge. So yeah…most of the news outlets have a liberal bias.

Dutchess_III's avatar

What kinds of articles do they print that suggests they are left leaning @seawulf575?

gorillapaws's avatar

The author lost me at “Liberal Media.” The media is owned by a handful of multibillion dollar corporate conglomerates. They are very pro-establishment, pro-business, pro-bank, pro-trade, pro-war, pro-pharma/health insurance, anti-environment, anti-union/labor. I’m not sure how that qualifies as being “liberal” (except half of the Democratic party politicians secretly supports these same positions because of donations).

On social issues that don’t have a financial component, the media does tend to lean left, but on anything that involves a dollar, they are very far to the right.

@seawulf575 None of the “liberal” outlets you mentioned gave Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez any coverage in her primary.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Yeah, he lost me too, right off the bat. He sounded like a trump minion.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I’m sure the media gave Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez as much coverage as any other totally unknown candidate.

gorillapaws's avatar

@Dutchess_III She crushed Joe Crowley in small donor contributions. And she wasn’t totally unknown. I knew a lot about her from her interviews on the Young Turks Network.

Part of the problem here is that “unknown” is determined by the media that has a huge financial incentive to maintain the status quo. They work hard to blackout progressive issues, candidates and third parties. They are also complicit in allowing “Fauxgressives” to pretend to be progressive while taking huge donations from groups that aren’t progressive and voting against progressive causes (see Cory Booker, and Kamala Harris).

Dutchess_III's avatar

Well, I’m glad she won, I think.

JLeslie's avatar

Just to be clear, he hates Trump.

mazingerz88's avatar

The article is bullshit. Singling out liberal media and Hollywood as forming public opinion. Time to get over the “biased media herds people” offensive. It has happened, it’s happening and will continue on until the sheeple start educating themselves against biased media.

It is possible. The sheeple have brains. Just use it. If you see an orange orangutan behaving like an orange asshole orangutan, that…is an orange asshole orangutan. Don’t vote for that orange asshole orangutan.

Dutchess_III's avatar

It’s sad that even people who hate trump are letting themselves be swayed by his bullshit. “Liberal media”? Fake news!

seawulf575's avatar

@mazingerz88 So what you are saying, if I read it right, is that you know there is media bias that is striving to form public opinion and it will keep happening until people wake up and educate themselves. So why is it, then, that you are so down on Trump every time he mentions fake news and calls out the media bias? You know it is happening yet you are fighting against people waking up to it. Why is that?

mazingerz88's avatar

^* trump is an ass who should never have been president.

His use of fake news is obvious propaganda that only works for idiots. The only fake news to him is news that’s critical to him. And when it’s not, it’s genuine and terrific news. He even appoints in office people from a fake news TV network!

See the difference? I’m surprised you even asked this question.

seawulf575's avatar

But wait…you just said that media DOES try to control opinions. You just said that. Isn’t that pretty much the definition of fake news? Propaganda? And there are far more liberal outlets than conservative and most of Hollywood is liberal. So which is it? Is it propaganda from which the “sheeple” need to wake up and educate themselves or is it not? Were you wrong then or are you wrong now?

mazingerz88's avatar

^^You better define what you think trump means by his fake news and what you yourself define as fake news.

Far more liberal outlets? Heard of Sinclair?

seawulf575's avatar

What does Sinclair have to do with anything? Many of their stations lean left. I know, you want it to not be true, but it is. Here’s the problem with your statement…Sinclair owns individual stations…not huge outlets. A local station can still broadcast ABC, CBS, NBC, or FOX. But let’s face it, as news media goes, the biggies are CNN, ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC, FOX, The New York Times, the Washington Post, USA today and NPR/PBS. Maybe the Washington Times, though it is smaller by comparison. Of those, only FOX and the Washington Times lean right. Now, throw into the mix Hollywood and all the idiot actors, directors and producers that feel compelled to spout off about political things. Most of Hollywood leans left with a few exceptions. So all in all, most of the media is liberal and they do all they can to not report actual news, but to slant everything to create a narrative to control public opinion. That is why they hate Trump so much…he opened up the dialogue on the public forum that most media is propaganda…which it is. You, yourself, have already said as much. What is the problem? don’t like admitting Trump is right?

mazingerz88's avatar

^^Do you really think it’s mostly about trump being wrong or right? If he would stop being the pathetic attention-seeking vain, corrupt and money worshiping demon that he is, people might actually think he is worth listening to.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Why are you obsessing with news outlets @seawulf575?

seawulf575's avatar

@Dutchess_III I think it is incorrect to say I am obsessed with news outlets. Let’s review this thread a bit. The question involved an editorial that dealt with media bias from both news outlets and Hollywood. So talking about news outlets is right in line with the question. But let’s delve a little deeper. The author of the editorial specifically mentioned liberal media bias. So my initial comment addressed that as well. @rojo felt it was probably unfair to single out liberal bias in media as conservative outlets are also biased. He is correct and I stated so, pointing out merely that the author talked about liberal media and because most of the big news outlets lean left. You then questioned be as to why I felt most of the news outlets leaned left and I answered that, pointing out a series of big names in news outlets and which way they lean. The liberal outlets far outnumber the conservative ones. Then, fast forward a few comments and @mazingerz88 starts a really odd statement that media does indeed attempt to control public opinion and it is somehow the “sheeple’s” fault. I questioned him on that and we end up right back in the conversation of which ideology (liberal or conservative) has more outlets. So I am once again forced to go into the list of examples of news outlets that lean left compared to that on the right.
Now, the real question is: why are you asking such a silly question? Just trying to make it look like I am obsessing when the fact is I am on topic and it is other jellies that can’t face reality?

Dutchess_III's avatar

I think the editorial was pretty left-leaning and pretty confusing so I didn’t take it seriously. But you can, if you want.

seawulf575's avatar

Huh. So when someone asks a question about something, if you don’t like it, you just ignore it and answer the question anyway? Odd.

Dutchess_III's avatar

The question asked what thought of the editorial. My answer is I didn’t give it much (deep) thought because it was too biased.
Not everything requires a raging argument, @seawulf575.

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