Another election day is upon us, always a great boost to the establishment media giants that own cable and print news as well as TV and radio stations. Total political advertising spending for the 2014 election should reach $2.5 billion dollars in this cycle and most of the payoff money goes to only six companies.
Media Fairness and Accountability to the Public Does Not Exist
Back in 1983, 50 companies controlled 90% of the American media market but today those 50 have dwindled to only 6 that control 90% of the media: Comcast or GE, News Corp, Disney, Viacom, Time Warner and CBS. The classic infographic below created by Frugal Dad in 2012 is now a little outdated, but you get the picture.
Yes, the media is now controlled by a close, interrelated cabal of companies. Their 200-plus executives use establishment news and opinion along with a plethora of so-called experts from controlled think tanks to orchestrate public opinion on major issues of importance to the power elite.
The Importance of Voting and Political Action Is also a False Paradigm
While many of us continually lament the bias of the media and the false illusion of news objectivity, especially compared to our views on the issues, all too few are willing to confront an even greater injustice, that of the illusion of real choice in the closed two-party US political system. Think about this: There has not been a third party in the US able to break into the ironclad two-party system since the Republican Party nominated Abraham Lincoln as the presidential nominee for the election of 1860. That was over 150 years ago.
One of my earliest childhood memories was going with my dad to the polling booth in the 1956 election when he whispered to me that he was going to break a family tradition since the 1870s of voting straight Democrat Party ticket and vote for General Eisenhower as the Republican candidate for president. At the time, no one in my family had voted Republican since the end of the War Between the States after the Republicans had outlawed former Confederate soldiers from voting in elections. During Reconstruction and Washington’s military rule in North Carolina during the period of 1865 to 1877, my family was prohibited from voting because we had supported secession and the Confederacy.