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Requiem

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By Frances Itani
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Ear to the Ground

What Liberal Media?

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Posted on Aug 9, 2013
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“If you know anyone who still believes in a ‘liberal media,’ ” writes David Akadjian at The Washington Spectator, “here are 13 things everyone would know” if it really existed.

First on Akadjian’s list is “where American jobs went.”

“Outsourcing (or offshoring) is a bigger contributor to unemployment in the U.S. than laziness,” he writes. “Since 2000, U.S. multinationals have cut 2.9 million jobs here while increasing employment overseas by 2.4 million. This is likely just the tip of the iceberg as multinational corporations account for only about 20 percent of the labor force.”

“When was the last time you saw a front-page headline about outsourcing?” Akadjian asks.

Second is the redistribution of wealth upward and the fact of widening inequality. “In 2010,” he says, “20 percent of the people held approximately 88 percent of the net worth in the U.S. The top 1 percent alone held 35 percent of all net worth.”

Meanwhile, “[t]he bottom 80 percent of people held only 12 percent of net worth in 2010. In 1983, the bottom 80 percent held 18 percent of net worth.”

Third—and certainly not last—is the growth and activity of the American Legislative Exchange Council, or ALEC. “If there were a corporate organization that drafted laws and then passed them on to state legislators to implement,” Akadjian asks, “wouldn’t you think the ‘liberal’ media would report on them?”

ALEC is just such an organization, but the “liberal media” does no such thing. We read and hear not a word about the titanically moneyed group’s responsibility for “Stand Your Ground laws,” “Voter ID laws,” “Right to Work laws,” “Privatizing schools,” “Health savings account bills, which benefit health care companies” or “Tobacco industry legislation.”

“Many legislators don’t even change the proposals handed to them by this group of corporations,” Akadjian writes. “They simply take the corporate bills and bring them to the floor.”

A truly liberal media would take an immediate interest in those stories, which strike at the core of liberal values pertaining to the public—as opposed to private—welfare. But to find any mention, let alone critical discussion of them, the public has to turn to an increasingly obscure, fringe, independent and online press.

View Akadjian’s 10 other subjects of liberal interest here.

—Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly.

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