Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Left blogs and the US media.

Glenn Greenwald hits another home run, this time at Crooks and Liars. Greenwald argues that the US media is exercising a bizarre double-standard when it comes to covering blogs: blogs on the left are criticized for excess passion and vulgarity, while blogs on the right are ignored despite their increasing violence and frank hatred.

It's hard to fathom why the media is engaging in this sort of selective coverage, but I do have a suggestion (and only a suggestion -- it's not terribly plausible, due to overreliance on explicit malice rather than ignorance). Left blogs in the US are in the beginnings of forming a progressive noise machine to counter the neoconservative noise machine that has spread across newspapers, TV stations, radio, etc. in the US. The neocon machine is extremely profitable, and hence self-sustaining -- but it's become sufficiently detached from reality that if exposed to significant competition, it probably will start to flounder. So, members of the neocon machine -- publishers and owners of the media companies -- have a financial incentive to attack left blogs, to try and undercut their power before they begin to have any power of signficance.

As I said, it tends to rely on malice more than ignorance -- I have a general rule that, if something can be attributed to ignorance and stupidity, and also to malice and conspiracy, the former is more likely to be right (there are just more dumb people than evil ones). But, it's got a veneer of plausibility to it that I find disturbing.

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