The Conservative Media Debacle
While there seems to be a rising tide of right-wing nationalism spreading throughout the U.S and Europe over the last several years, there seems to be another evolving trend with the voices that represent those ideologies falling from grace. Take Bill O’ Riley of “The O'Reilly Factor”, for example. The latest in a string of takedowns of conservative political commentators is by far one of the most influential names in cable news. He was exposed as a serial sexual offender and Fox News was exposed for covering it up. But he, like so many other conservative pundits and outlets, was done in due to their own volition. Now because of it, anybody willing to do business with them are slowly pulling away. You can see this same trend with Milo Yianoppolis, who was exposed for his views on hemophilia and lost his book and advertising deals, Tomi Lahren, the blaze host ousted for her ‘pro-choice’ views, and Alex Jones, who was recently exposed as a ‘performance artist’ after his lawyer was trying to quell fears that his show would deport him as a lunatic.
So what does this tell us about the future of conservative media? While it does not mean the end of conservative media in the slightest, albeit a devastating blow, one of the reasons these stories and the names associated with them are so important, is it shows the underlying hypocrisy that those on the right continue to show time and time again.
Of course, the left has their share of issues all of which would require several pages and videos dedicated to the regressive tactics and complementary ideologies. However it is becoming more and more apparent that the bulk of right-wing commentators are not bound by principle or morality, more so bound by narratives. Narratives, talking points, and a sort of conditional patriotism that comes with caring for certain issues only when it affects them or their family members. That is what they stand for.
We see this now with Alex Jones, who is now on the record saying that his feelings he expresses in his show are real, while his lawyer says his antics are a “performance piece”. Does Alex Jones believe the things he’s saying on ‘Info Wars?’ Who can say for sure? What is clear is the fact that Jones instructed his lawyer to make a case that would best make it so that he would be able to retain custody of his kids. So it’s apparent that either Jones, his lawyer, or the two of them together thought that the way Alex Jones acts on his show could result in a judge thinking he is crazy enough to warrant not keeping his kids. This is causing him to back away from his radio identity.
I do not deny that there are several commentators, bloggers, politicians, and everyday constituents that believe the actual insanity and callous rhetoric that has become commonplace with Republicans. The ‘Kool-aid drinkers’ as they are so often called. It is now coming out that many of commentators, like Alex Jones and Bill O’ Riley, are ignorant ideological hypocrites at best, and opportunistic frauds exploiting the biases of the Kool-aid drinkers and the ignorant ideological hypocrites.
Do I truly believe that these individuals being exposed for who they really are is the reason they are off the air? No, of course not. They’re off the air because of the sponsors pulling out at alarming rates. But this is why you allow people to openly speak their mind. People should have a platform to speak, no matter the case. Because if you allow free and open dialogue and allow people to dictate their real beliefs, then in the market place of ideas those beliefs are free to resonate or be booed off the stage as these most recent commentators have been. Think about it.