On June 5 the New York Times Company sold the Boston Globe for a paltry $70 million. It had paid $1.1 billion in 1993, which was worth $1.76 billion in today’s money. Think about that last sentence. You spend $1.1 billion on something, then sell it off at a 90% loss. It gets worse.
On August 5th, the bombshell hit: the Graham family is selling The Washington Post for a paltry $250 million to Amazon owner Jeff Bezos. If the peripheral Boston Globe was worth $1.76 billion in 1993, and $70 million today, think of what the Post was worth in 1993. Billionaire Jeff Bezos, the founder of the largest mail order web based company in the world, figured it would be fun to own a paper. He certainly paid the right price.
This bodes ill for the Thought Controllers in the media, and it is great news. For decades, the artificial Left vs. Right ‘debate’ in the country was purely Kabuki theater. On the Left, the NY Times and the Washington Post led the way, and on the Right, the Wall St. Journal was the standard bearer. The rhetorical battles were decent, but even a cursory analysis of those newspapers and their editorial boards shows that they were both in the first pew of the Church of the State. In a nutshell, the Times would explain how we needed more gov’t in our lives to solve our problems, and the Journal would argue that we needed more gov’t in our lives to solve our problems, but not quite as much as the Times would want.
The best example of this fake debate was the Reagan administration. The “Democrats” hated Reagan, and the “Conservatives” loved him. Yet, Reagan vetoed no spending bills, opened the borders, and government spending and debt skyrocketed during his term. One would think “liberals” would have loved the guy. You can read about what actually happened during the Reagan administration here, but you’d never know it by the rhetoric from the 2 ‘sides’ of the Mainstream Media.
These two papers controlled the terms of the debate. There was no internet, there was no outlet, other than newsletters, for any honest debate outside of the 3×5 index card of ‘established’ opinion. The World Wide Web has decimated the major media outlets, and you have to wonder why anyone would either care, or still read such nonsense. The NY Times, still seen by many in the NY area as a legitimate paper, sat on the W Bush warrantless wiretapping scandal for a year before it pretended to be angry about it. They fired a real journalist (and real leftist), Chris Hedges when he started to actually report what US troops were doing in the Middle East.
On the right, neoconservative shill outlets like National Review, Pajamas Media and most of conservative talk radio are openly hostile to someone like Ron Paul, who presented a plan to eliminate 5 Federal Gov’t departments, and reduce spending by $1 billion his first year. Why would they hate this man – I thought conservatives were against government spending?
Perhaps people are starting to see that the emperor has no clothes. Newsweek was sold for $1 to an octogenarian zillionaire, who promptly died. It exists today as something called ‘The Daily Beast’. Remember, Newsweek was going to spike the story about Monica Lewinsky and Bill Clinton. After all, Clinton was a “Democrat”and couldn’t possibly get negative press, and the rabble should’t have their images shattered – they are unfit for such things. Unfortunately, in a sign of things to come, Matt Drudge had the story, published it, forced Newsweek’s hand, and the rest is history. Drudge’s site is worthhundreds of millions of dollars, and Newsweek is gone.