by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Sure, it’s the media’s job to report the news, and Trump is constantly making news, and creating drama, much like a reality show producer who wants to keep the audience hooked. It’s less clear why the media finds it necessary to maintain a voluminous stable of pundits and op-ed columnists who contribute very little to the so-called “national discussion” beyond shopworn diatribes against Trump’s depravity, and the Republican Party’s acquiescence.
Here’s one example: The Washington Post opinion section. What, exactly, is the point? It is, perhaps not surprisingly, an endless stream of anti-Trump, anti-GOP tirades—the same familiar argument repeating into oblivion under different bylines. (Scroll down for a sample of the Post‘s opinion output since July.)
Trump is not a popular president, and the average Washington Post reader is unlikely to (un-ironically) own a MAGA hat. Maybe this is what customers demand. After all, the Daily Show thrived by placating a certain liberal subset’s lust for affirmation of their moral superiority, especially during the Bush administration. People enjoy content that validates their worldview.
Critics of Fox News often accuse the network of creating an alternative reality for its viewers, but rarely consider the possibility that left-leaning media outlets—which is to say, practically all of them — are guilty of doing the same. Maybe it’s because opinion journalists are just lazy, and can’t think of anything interesting to write about it. One of the first things they teach in journalism school is the importance of finding a unique or unexplored angle from which to approach a topic. “Yes, Donald Trump, you are a ‘racist'” (Jonathan Capehart, August 9) wouldn’t make the cut.