Friday, September 4, 2009

Will there be diminishing returns on right-wing outrage?

According to First Read: "The ability of the conservative media machine to generate a controversy for this White House is amazing. In fact, this is an example of a story that percolates where it becomes harder and harder for some to claim there's some knee-jerk liberal media bias."

Well, at least they're admitting they're being played. I guess that's something. But I do wonder whether the mainstream media's wholehearted embrace (in terms of endless and mostly uncritical coverage) of right-wing lunacy will allow a shift back to the perception of the media as essentially conservative, as it once was. Because, honestly, claiming it's anything else these days just doesn't hold water.

The one thing I'm curious about is this: okay, so the wingnuts went batshit about healthcare. They'll probably do the same about global warming legislation, immigration reform, etc. I can already imagine the depressing way that the immigration debate will play out: the wingnuts will be talking about how doing it will bring terrorists into the country, as well as criminals that will kill white people, etc. But the one thing I do wonder is: will this be sort of like the action movie that puts the climactic setpiece in the first act, then just gets wearisome after that because there's nowhere else to go? Where else can the wingnuts go, rhetorically, after this? I'm sure they'll surprise me, but if Obama gets health care done and then moves on to immigration, will the media still cover the (bound to be largely identical) right-wing outrage sympathetically or will they realize that it's the opposite of news and move on? Well, that is the real question, I think. I can see it turning out either way. The media does tire of narratives, as we know, but they like conflict. It will be something to watch.

The Man, The Myth, The Bio

East Bay, California, United States
Problem: I have lots of opinions on politics and culture that I need to vent. If I do not do this I will wind up muttering to myself, and that's only like one or two steps away from being a hobo. Solution: I write two blogs. A political blog that has some evident sympathies (pro-Obama, mostly liberal though I dissent on some issues, like guns and trade) and a culture blog that does, well, cultural essays in a more long-form manner. My particular thing is taking overrated things (movies, mostly, but other things too) down a peg and putting underrated things up a peg. I'm sort of the court of last resort, and I tend to focus on more obscure cultural phenomena.