The Mainstream Media Versus Humility

In case you missed it, Lyin’ Ted and John Kasich – the prickly, delusional governor of Ohio who doesn’t even warrant an insulting nickname – have both dropped out of the presidential race. Barring any insane convention shenanigans in Cleveland, the GOP elders will have to bite the bullet and live with Donald Trump as their nominee.

But enough about Trump himself, whose rise many people (including myself) failed to predict. Along with exposing Conservatism Inc’s isolation, Trump’s success has also laid bare the sheer bankruptcy of America’s pundit caste. Of course, there’s nothing wrong about making inaccurate guesses; if predicting the future were easy, I could make a fortune betting on sports and retire young. Nevertheless, as Glenn Greenwald and Zaid Jilani rightly point out, these Beltway Brahmins cannot entertain the thought of being wrong:

TRYING TO PREDICT the future can be fun, which is why — from office sports pools to stock market speculation — many do it. Generally, though, people make such predictions with at least some humility: with the knowledge that they do not actually know what the future holds.

But not America’s beloved political pundits. When they pronounce what the future has in store for us, it comes in the form of definitive decrees, shaped with the tone of authoritative certainty.

Since these definitive decrees are anything but, the authors think that today’s arrogant writers need to get their heads out of their ass:

At the very least, when a profession that touts its expertise, collectively, is this wildly wrong about something so significant, more needs to be done than a cursory, superficial acknowledgment of error — or casting blame on others — before quickly moving on, in the hope that it’s all forgotten. Some collective, introspective soul-searching is in order.

Will such introspection actually occur? I wouldn’t hold my breath. If America has taught us anything over the past few decades, it’s that elites of all stripes will always find a way to fail up. No need to contemplate reform when our glorious “meritocracy” shields affluent, overrated journalists from the consequences of their mistakes.

Therefore, despite screwing up in a manner that would get most regular workers fired – or at least admonished – pundits like Ross Douthat will continue being handsomely compensated to enlighten us little people. That is, until we collectively decide to dump the mainstream media and seek better alternatives.

One can only predict when that will happen.

This entry was posted in American Pathologies, Politics, Subversion, Uncategorized and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to The Mainstream Media Versus Humility

  1. Chaz says:

    The media’s failure to predict the success of both Trump and Sanders is just additional evidence of the disconnect between the ruling class and the reality. Despite the non-stop hatchet job that has been done on both of them (for Christ’s sake one outlet referenced a review of a restaurant at one of Trump’s buildings to try and discredit him) their popularity has increased. The media has pushed an agenda and it has failed, at least on the republican side (Sanders will lose due to the democrat “super delegates”); of course Trumps nomination will only be allowed because these same people think that there is no way that trump can win the general election. My fear is that when/if it becomes clear that he does have a chance to win, he will be assassinated… Particularly because he has grown in popularity after every attempted character assassination. We shall see.

    • Gay State Girl says:

      I wonder how authentic the media hysteria regarding Trump actually is. It is satisfying to see the MSM disproven but they may well be laughing behind closed doors. I was thrilled to see my nemesis finally be disproven.

      One thing that can be taken away especially in regards the jewish press (or related) is to treat the barrage of social media attacks as an omen and learn from it rather than try to fight it. Don’t shoot the messenger so to speak.

      • Bay Area Guy says:

        @ GSG

        One thing I will say is that, in spite of all their handwringing about Trump’s success, liberal pundits and media elites have played a major role in facilitating his rise. If it weren’t for a corporate media driven by an insatiable desire for ratings and controversy, Trump wouldn’t have gotten so much free advertising.

        Sure, much of the reporting on Trump has been negative, but it nevertheless kept him in the public eye – and gave him a chance to resonate with those who do like his style.

    • Bay Area Guy says:

      The media’s failure to predict the success of both Trump and Sanders is just additional evidence of the disconnect between the ruling class and the reality.

      Definitely. The fact that establishment lane candidates such as Jeb Bush, Marco Rubio, and John Kasich ran “positive” campaigns demonstrates just how badly out of touch so many elites are with the growing anger and radicalism in the US.

      Ditto for Hillary’s whole line about how “America is already great.”

      All I know is that regardless of how this election turns out, the anger that inspired Feeling the Bern and Trumpism aren’t going away anytime soon. If anything, eight more years of Clinton style neoliberal centrism will only further radicalize the country.

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