Right. Well, you know, one of the enduring questions is why the press behaves in the way that they do, and it's not something you can answer with easily packaged answers or unifying theories because there's, the press is not any more monolithic than any other large collection of, you know, institutions and people with all kinds of competing motives.The hoary adage that Marx was a great diagnostician who unfortunately proposed a cure worse than the disease has always seemed to me to be deliciously true. What's remarkable about our modern "progressives" is just how thoroughly Great-Man-ized their political "science" has become and just how thoroughly incapable they are of conducting any kind of materialist analysis. Fuck, I'm a libertarian anarchist and I can do it without too much personal discomfort. Let's try this on for size.
-Glenn "You Must Be Fucking Kidding Me" Greenwald, during an interview with La Digs
Time Warner owns Time, Life, and People magazines, plus about 60 others. It owns DC Comics. (Hey, Batman!) It owns film studios like Warner Bros., New Line, and Fine Line. It owns HBO, Comedy Central, TNT, TCM, TBS, CNN and all its spinoffs. It's got a major share in TiVo. It owns AOL. It has a substantial share in Amazon. It has substantial business partnerships with Viacom/National Amusements, AT&T, and Bertelsman. Bertelsman is Europe's largest film and television producer. It's the largest trade publisher in the US. It owns Random House, Vintage, Knopf, The Modern Library, Bantam Doubleday, Dell, and Delacorte, plust a 50% share in the Book-of-the-Month Club with (see above) Time Warner. It's one of the largest US/European magazine publishers with over 80 titles. It owns a couple hundred music labels, including BMG, Arista, and RCA. National Amusements owns CBS Networks, and through Viacom controls Paramount, Nickelodeon, MTV, Showtime, and BET. Its publishing imprints include Simon and Schuster, Pocket Books, and Scribner. It has exclusive advertising rights on public transit in New York, LA, Chicago, San Francisco, Philly, Detroit, etc. GE owns NBC, CNBC, MSNBC in partnership with Microsoft. A&E, History, Biography, are shared with Disney et al. Disney owns ABC and ESPN. Newscorp owns Fox and Foxnews, a 2/3 stake in the National Geographic Channel, TV Guide, 20th Century Fox, the Weekly Standard, the New York Post, Harpercollins, etc. Did we mention that AT&T owns a major stake in Newscorp? Maybe. It gets so hard to keep it straight.
Just ask Mr. Jensen:
You get up on your little twenty-one inch screen and howl about America and democracy. There is no America. There is no democracy. There is only IBM, and ITT, and AT&T, and DuPont, Dow, Union Carbide, and Exxon. Those *are* the nations of the world today. What do you think the Russians talk about in their councils of state, Karl Marx? They get out their linear programming charts, statistical decision theories, minimax solutions, and compute the price-cost probabilities of their transactions and investments, just like we do. We no longer live in a world of nations and ideologies, Mr. Beale. The world is a college of corporations, inexorably determined by the immutable bylaws of business. The world is a business, Mr. Beale. It has been since man crawled out of the slime. And our children will live, Mr. Beale, to see that . . . perfect world . . . in which there's no war or famine, oppression or brutality. One vast and ecumenical holding company, for whom all men will work to serve a common profit, in which all men will hold a share of stock. All necessities provided, all anxieties tranquilized, all boredom amused. And I have chosen you, Mr. Beale, to preach this evangel.He was a little too sanguine about the breakdown of national borders . . .
Because the truth is that their are governments, and they are tied inexorably to the operations of the very corporations whose holdings constitute nearly the sum total of information available to folks today. Mr. Jensen had it half-backwards. We are also the Soviets. The internet is Howard Beale's 21-inch screen. We're just a lot of madmen. When Glenn Greenwald and Digby and Liberal Netrootsia and the Concerned Citizens for Fairness in the Media of Responsibily and Ethics of Civil Liberties in Washington all get together to worry themselves sick over the tranquilizing effect of triviality-as-Media, I want to stick my own head out the window and scream. They're only abrogating their responsibility if it's to you, and, kiddos, I gots ta tell ya, it ain't!
Dear Lord Jesus in motherfucking heaven, just follow the fucking money!