Discernment Dies In Desperation

« March 2017 »

Memo to the Washington Post: OK, TAKE IT DOWN A FUCKING NOTCH.

The Washington Post has a new slogan. That slogan? "Democracy Dies In Darkness". That is some exploitative bullshit.

I mean, I get it. The free press is definitely under attack. We definitely need outlets like the Washington Post and the New York Times to do the digging and find the stories and expose the insane malfeasance of the Trump administration. But fuck your slogan right in the darkness. Oh, and fuck the New York Times' Oscars ad while I'm here.

Did we, as liberals, learn NOTHING from Whole Foods? When it comes to marketing to us using our politics, we're not quite at the level of those commemorative 9/11 coins that fold open with a replica of the Twin Towers, but we're not great. Whole Foods charged us triple and then used the money to fight health care reform. A lot of people are eating this "Democracy Dies In Darkness" shit up, and you should know better.

The enemy of my enemy is my friend, yes. But that phrase doesn't mean "trust the enemy of my enemy to hold my wallet". It just means you have similar goals. But as their editorial page has amply demonstrated over the past couple of decades, the Post, and other newspapers we're now turning to in idealistic desperation, are perfectly capable of having multiple goals.

And one of those goals is money. And right now, the money is in positioning themselves as the Mighty Fourth Estate, brave defenders of the truth, and a vital check on the power of the government. But that wasn't always the case. That wasn't the case after 9/11. Then, the money was in militaristic jingoism, and that's where the news went. For fuck's sake, it wasn't even true six months ago, when the money was in daily coverage of the latest Clinton Wikileak.

And, of course, for many years, there wasn't even any money in it. Print is dead and all that. They see an opportunity to rebrand, and that's fine. We need them to do this work, and that's fine. But let's not lose track of the actual nature of our relationship with these news sources. Our interests are temporarily aligned. That's it.