The naked left
By Bruce Walker
The left has lost the trust of America. The power which sustains leftism is not based on rational argument, moral purpose, or even enlightened self-interest (how has deconstruction of the nuclear family, for example, helped poor Americans?)
Instead, the left holds power through its pernicious insinuation into every nook and cranny of public life which we have been taught to trust as fair and honorable: the news media; academia; foundations; the public school system; professional organizations like the American Psychological Association, the American Library Association, and the American Bar Association; and similar nominally fair and objective referees of public discourse and action.
Most conservatives are painfully aware of the utter absence of real competition in the leftist television news media. CBS, CNN, MSNBC, ABC, although on paper rivals, never expose the glaring weakness of the product which their "competitors" hawk to audiences: rampant leftist bias. The almost surreal spectacle of these siblings masquerading as competitors utterly ignoring the "Fast and Furious" scandal until Obama claimed executive privilege, and now that the House of Representatives is about to find Eric Holder in contempt of Congress (with some House Democrats supporting the measure), shows how tightly the left manages the news.
There are consequences to this suppression of real news. The leftist media is melting into near-insignificance. CNN, for example, just had its lowest viewer ratings in twenty-one years. Fox News continues to do much better than any other network news because, in part, anyone genuinely interested in news would have to watch Fox. The print media is also evaporating, and much of that reflects a decline in the credibility of newspapers. Gallup in August 2010 tracked a twenty-year decline of Americans who have a "great deal / quite a lot" of confidence in television news and newspapers. In 1990, about 39% of Americans trusted newspapers, but now that percentage is around 25%. The decline for television news, which in 1993 was more trusted than newspapers, with 46% trusting television news, has now plummeted to 22%.
Gallup released a poll on June 20 which exposed a much broader decline of Americans in the other "conveyor belts" of leftism. Trust in public schools, for example, has dropped from 58% in 1973 to 29% today, the lowest point in polling history. What is the basis of this mistrust? The left lies. It is that direct and simple.
When the Los Angeles Times, for example, recently reported that conservatives had declining trust in "science," the real story, which Business Insider published in April, is that conservatives have stopped believing that pseudo-science propaganda in the inquisitorial atmosphere of institutional leftism still deserved the name "science." This month, Peter Gleick, who dishonestly portrayed himself as associated with the Heartland Institute and compounded his misrepresentation by initially lying about having done it, has been reinstated.
Integrity, especially regarding the representation of opposing opinions, is the heart of science. Remove that, and the residue is an icky anti-science -- bigoted, hapless, and ultimately discredited. This explains the stunning Rasmussen report in August of last year which shows that 69% of Americans believe that scientists have falsified global warming data.
Particularly odious has been the behavior of organizations which have no business at all taking sides. The American Library Association, for example, has found it impossible to condemn the imprisonment of librarians and the burning of offensive books in Castro's foul regime. Conservatives have come to understand that almost any organ of public life has become as intolerantly doctrinaire as what one would have seen in Stalin's or Hitler's totalitarian empires.
The problem is not opinion or advocacy. We expect politicians to contend with each other over ideas, and our nation long received its news from overtly partisan papers like the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. Science once used to have something called "schools of thought," in which different theories of what empirical evidence suggested could be respectfully considered. What offends and alienates America is the left's indignant protestations to the effect that its myriad organs are not biased, not to mention the consignment of all not among the cadres of leftism to ignorance or stupidity, leaving them unworthy of anything beyond smug mockery.
More and more Americans who may not necessarily agree with every conservative position see that the only ones who are genuine, truthful, and thoughtful are those who have liberated themselves from the dungeon of leftism. Moreover, having lost the confidence of America, the corrupted institutions of our society cannot recover that trust without first acknowledging their grievous sins against honorable discourse. There is no evidence that this confession will ever happen. The naked left is less an object of fear these days than the object of derision -- or, perhaps, of pity.
Bruce Walker is the author of book Poor Lenin's Almanac: Perverse Leftists Proverbs for Modern Life and a contributing editor to Enter Stage Right.