Something has happened in the last two weeks that should dispel the widely held misconceptions that the “mainstream” media is liberal and generally supports Democrats. For the second weekend in a row, no labor leaders, such as the AFL-CIO’s Richard Trumka, have been invited (as of now) on the Sunday morning shows.
Greg Sargent explains what’s at stake here, “…if there were ever a time the networks would want to book labor officials to appear, you’d think it would be now. The Wisconsin standoff is the most important domestic political story in the country right now, and as many commentators at those same networks have pointed out, both sides view this battle as ground zero in a national war that may determine the fate of organized labor in America.
But labor officials are beginning to fear that none of them will be invited on this weekend to give voice to the labor point of view. This, even as tough-talking anti-union governor Chris Christie is set to do a major appearance on CBS on Sunday.
One AFL-CIO official tells me that reps for the AFL-CIO and other unions reached out to all the big three network shows — ABC’s This Week, NBC’s Meet the Press, and CBS’ Face the Nation — to ask if they would invite on any labor officials. Thus far the answer has been cool to indifferent, the official says.
No labor officials have yet been booked to appear.”
Liberals/Progressives have long scoffed that the “mainstream” media was liberal. After all, most newspapers and TV stations, not to mention the Big Four networks, are owned by corporations. Yet those on the right never seem to comprehend that. Nor do they understand that big business favors Republicans big large margins and only contribute to Democrats to hedge their bets win and retain some influence when Democrats control the levers of power.
Today, we have one of the clearest examples yet that Republicans that control the message in the “mainstream” media. Who are the booked guests so far? Republican Governor Scott Walker of Wisconsin, who is in hot water over his attempt to bust unions via a budget bill, Republican Governor Chris Christie of New Jersey over whom the “mainstream” media is slobbering as some kind of star (The New York Times is slobbering all over him this weekend in a piece by noted power worshiper Matt Bai) and Republican Governor Mitch Daniels of Indiana, who had the Indiana Legislature pull a union busting bill similar to Wisconsin because he was catching too much heat.
Notice what was missing? The opposing view point. Why might that be? Richard Trumka, the head of the AFL-CIO and probably one of the most charismatic leaders Big Labor has had in ages, has never been on any of the Sunday morning bobblehead shows. Wouldn’t a “liberal” “mainstream” media have had Trumka on at least once by now? He’s been AFL-CIO President since September 16, 2009, and was President of the United Mine Workers from 1982 to 1995.
The Sunday morning bobblehead shows usually have on “centrist” Democrats or even DINO’s like former Tennessee Representative Harold Ford, Jr. — people who enjoy throwing basic Democratic Party values under the bus. Look at the aforementioned Ford. Once he was defeated in his attempt to represent Tennessee in the Senate, he moved to New York to work for one of the big Wall Street investment firms (Merrill Lynch). He got bored with that and “explored” an attempt to primary the appointed Kirsten Gillibrand. Given that he was laughed out of polite company because his only constituency was Wall Street, he decided to contest Gillibard and is now working for a different Wall Street firm (Morgan Stanley).
In fact, the only unabashed liberal who’s on the Sunday bobblehead shows is economist Paul Krugman, who appears on the roundtable segment of the ABC Sunday morning show. He gets to spend his time batting down the lies and disinformation of Washington Post columnist, and noted Conservative, George Will.
So I ask, is the “mainstream” media liberal? And if it is, why are so many Republicans on week after week? One would think that if liberals were running the media, they’d provide a wee bit of time to their own side and by side, I mean liberal Democrats – people who embody the opposite of the hard core conservatives the Sunday shows book. Instead, we get hard right Republicans versus mid right centrist Democrats and all the while the conservatives have the temerity to complain about the liberal media. There is no liberal media, and the failure of the Sunday shows to book an equal number of labor representatives and liberals to counter the conservative’s message proves that.
Update: After a coordinated campaign of Tweeting and phone calls to Fischer and show host David Gregory, there was a late change Thursday evening for Sunday’s Meet the Press. The President of the AFL-CIO, Richard Trumka, will be one of the guests for the show, along with Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker(R). The change was sent out by Meet the Press’ Executive Producer Betsy Fischer. It’s telling that it took a herculean effort from bloggers and unions supporters to even have Mr. Trumka given the union side of the argument this weekend.