Today, of course, the mainstream media bewail how polarized the political landscape has become. They fret over the violent language, the dirty tricks, the lack of dialogue. But what they are fretting about is that there has over the past thirty years appeared a point of view that disagrees with the serried ranks of Liberalism. It is the point of view held by 42 percent of the American people. It is the point of view that has dominated politics since Ronald Reagan's election and gained emphasis since President Bill Clinton threw up his hands and said, "The era of big government is over." It was in retreat in the last years of George W. Bush and perhaps the first six months of President Obama, but now it is again dominant. It is also a perfectly respectable point of view.
As I continue on my campaign, I am increasingly aware that what has changed in the country is mainstream media. They are less hospitable to conservatives. They act like a political party, an especially partisan party. Conservatives have emerged in media to express their point of view on major issues of the day. This is diversity of opinion that the increasingly partisan mainstream media cannot countenance, and so they say it is shocking. It is incendiary. It is closed-minded.
Actually, one of the rare figures on television or radio that strenuously works to include both the left and the right in debates is -- prepare yourself -- Sean Hannity of Fox News. He really works at it. He airs people who disagree with him and he lets the left and the right have at each other. As for mainstream media, if it airs a debate between the left and the right, the person on the right is usually a critic of the right who feigns a therapeutic message for conservatism, say, David Frum, a man with no standing on the right.
I say wherever I go nowadays that Liberalism is dead. One piece of evidence is mainstream media. It pretends the dominant political view in the country, conservatism, does not exist.
R. Emmett Tyrrell Jr. is founder and editor-in-chief of The American Spectator and an adjunct scholar at the Hudson Institute. He is the author of the forthcoming book "The Death of Liberalism." To find out more about R. Emmett Tyrrell Jr. and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.
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