The real mystery behind the FCC’s now abandoned “study” to police American newsrooms is why the mainstream media refused to raise holy hell over it. While Obama’s lapdogs refused to bark, it was conservative media who fought for newsroom independence and got the FCC to finally back down. Other than the media’s natural obedience to Obama, the fact that the fingerprints of left-wing billionaire George Soros have been found on the FCC study might also help to explain the media’s silence.
CNS News reports that for the first ten years of the last decade, Soros donated more than $52 million to numerous media outlets. In a world where the media is dying a slow, painful suicide (brought about by their own incompetence and corruption), that is no small amount of money. And you can bet that those media organizations that have not benefited from Soros’ largesse would someday like to. So why antagonize him?
The media’s hands-off policy with Soros is nothing new. While outlets such as Politico and NBC News obsess over every move made by the libertarian Koch brothers, Soros and his spider-web of influential left-wing political operations (Media Matters, Center for American Progress) almost never receive any kind of media scrutiny. A recent media study found that the ratio of references between Kochs’ organizations and Soros’ organizations, in news outlets that pose as objective, are literally hundreds to one. Politico actually has Ken Vogel, a former Soros employee,
constantly harassing covering the Koch brothers.
The mainstream media not only shares Soros’ hard-left vision, but also benefits or hopes to benefit from Soros’ bottomless billionaire well of funding. And in return, even though Soros’ Tides Foundation is many times larger than the Kochs, the media look the other way for Soros and turn the Kochs into America’s bogeyman. Which brings me back to the FCC proposal to police America’s newsrooms.
As enamored and protective as the media are of Obama, when the Administration was caught spying on journalists last year, his Media Palace Guards still squawked. But still, this attempted move by the FCC, which is probably the scariest move against the media by the federal government since the Alien and Sedition Acts of 1798, resulted in almost uniform silence by the mainstream media. If alternative and conservative media hadn’t been vocal, nothing would have stopped FCC from interrogating and intimidating the press.
What might explain the media’s silence is the looming specter of George Soros. History already proves the media has been reluctant to cross him. Apparently, even the idea of Soviet-style monitors looking over their shoulder couldn’t change that. CNS News helps to explain why:
Two schools were working with FCC on the project, according to Byron York of The Washington Examiner. The University of Southern California Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism and the University of Wisconsin-Madison Center for Communication and Democracy, were tasked by the FCC with coming up with criteria for what information is “critical” for Americans to have. The FCC study would have covered newspapers, websites, radio and television, according to The Washington Post.
On top of the 1st Amendment problems with this proposal, the schools involved have strong ties to liberal billionaire George Soros’ Open Society Foundations and have gotten more than $1.8 million from since 2000.
The journalism programs at these schools have even more ties to Soros besides their funding, including faculty members writing for university-based publications allied with Soros-funded outlets.
The schools have collaborated on this project going back at least to 2012. Lewis A. Friedland, who was a “principle investigator” for the FCC on this project, also directs the Center for Communication and Democracy at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He gave a presentation at Annenberg in Feb. 2012, on “communication ecology.” This was just four months before the schools presented their findings to the FCC.
There is just no rational explanation for the media’s lack of outrage over a federal government “study” that should put a chill down the spine of anyone who understand how important a free press is to protecting democracy.
It is bad enough when the media pushes to have the freedoms of everyone else crushed by the federal government. But when the media stops fighting for their own freedom, the canary in that coalmine doesn’t have a chance.
Follow John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC