Like The “Old Grey Mare” Journalism Today – “Ain’t What She Used To Be”

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As usual America’s ombudsmen(voters) would likely be at a lost as to why ethics is a tough row to hoe in today’s world of journalism. But big bucks aimed to replace the liberal press with the conservative press. And the on- going transition is noticeable.

[…]In 1981, News Corp bought half of the movie studio 20th Century Fox, buying the other half in 1984. In 1985, News Corp announced it was buying the Metromedia group of stations, setting the stage for the launch of a fourth U.S.commercial broadcasting television network. On 4 September 1985, Murdoch became a naturalised citizen to satisfy the legal requirement that only United States citizens could own American television stations. In 1986, the Metromedia deal closed, and the Fox Broadcasting Company was launched. This network, known on-screen as “Fox”, can now be picked up in over 96% of U.S. households.[…]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/News_Corporation#Expansion_and_consolidation

David Brooks and Gail Collins of the New York Times’ The Opinion Pages wonders “Will Journalism Go the Way of Whaling?” Keith Ellison Explodes At Sean Hannity: ‘The Worst Excuse For A Journalist I’ve Even Seen’ says the Huffington Post.  An extremely shocking miscarriage of journalism was revealed when the  UK’s  News of the World shut its doors.

And from Journalism.org we saw this: FNC TRAILS FAR BEHIND RIVALS IN MURDOCH COVERAGE.

From the Huffington Post we saw this: Fox News Producer Caught Rallying 9/12 Protest Crowd In Behind-The-Scenes Video.

And again  from Huffington Post: Rupert Murdoch: Obama “Dangerous, “Boston Globe Will Survive, Chase Carey Not “Heir Apparent”.

From the Register we saw this:  Murdoch: Google is mortal and together we can kill it Or at least tame it.

And it can’t get much worse than this: A Private Conversation Becomes Painfully Public.

For the old grey mare we can say the problem was old age. What can we say about the problem for today’s journalism? Let us look at the press.

The problem for the neocon press was the liberal press. The early attack on the liberal press came in a strange way. The ownership of the neocon press was often in the political news. When it came to politics, the neocon press did more than report the news – it made the news.

The liberal press was unaccustomed to being the target of neocon top press ownership. The liberal press was more civilized. Sure the top ownership of the Hearst Newspaper chain was in the news. The granddaughter, Patricia Campbell Hearst,  of publishing magnate William Randolph Hearst was kidnapped.  And that, understandably,  made front page.

But with respect to politics, the liberal press – close to election time – would publish its political choices and remind Americans to vote on election day. The liberal press  did not tell Americans who to vote for. They left that decision up to Americans who seemed well up to the task until 1980. After 1980 the neocon press was dictating who America should vote for. Ethics was on the wane. Listen to this from the past:

Kipling’s Six Honest Serving Men
I keep six honest serving men
(They taught me all I knew);
Their names are What and Why and When
And How and Where and Who.
I send them over land and sea,
I send them east and west;
But after they have worked for me,
I give them all a rest.
I let them rest from nine till five,
For I am busy then,
As well as breakfast, lunch and tea,
For they are hungry men.
But different folk have different views;
I know a person small—-
She keeps ten million serving-men,
Who get no rest at all!
She sends’em abroad on her own affairs,
From the second she opens her eyes—
One million Hows, two million Wheres,
And seven million Whys!

The Elephant’s Child

http://www.kipling.org.uk/poems_serving.htm

[Ethics, once lost, may be terribly difficult to find. Ethics is not a natural value of man.  It’s greed that is a natural value. A properly functioning democracy instills and uses ethics to help bind the population. News sources, and journalism  used to help in that effort. Now the ratio of help to attack seems to favor attack]

But like the old grey mare – journalism today – ain’t what she used to be.

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