After four long years, the mainstream media relentlessly attacked the Trump administration.
But right on cue, the narrative has shifted with the inauguration of Joe Biden.
And now, elite media outlets across the country are preparing to cheerlead for Biden rather than hold his administration accountable.
In 2008, Sean Hannity declared that “journalism is dead” after traditional news outlets from across the country seemingly discarded reporting for the sake of promoting Barack Obama’s presidential campaign.
12 years later, there remains little doubt that Hannity’s claim is now true.
But far from simply tilting the scales in favor of one side or the other as they had under Obama, media outlets are now treating the Biden administration as an invitation to begin a new era, one which former CIA analyst Martin Gurri calls “Post-Journalism.”
In an article published in the Winter 2021 edition of “City Journal”, Gurri describes how the decline of traditional media, particularly newspapers over the past twenty years, has led to many elite media outlets to “openly embrace advocacy over journalism.”
This new “post-journalism” replaces reporting with opinion, and substitutes selling the news, for selling an agenda to “a congregation of like-minded souls.”
The Trump administration provided the testing grounds for this new form of “post-journalism”, which makes the media’s actions under the Obama administration seem objective by comparison.
“A cynic (or a conservative) might argue that objectivity in political reporting was more an empty boast than a professional standard and that the newspaper, in pandering to its audience, had long favored an urban agenda, liberal causes, and Democratic candidates. This interpretation misses the transformation in the depths that post-journalism involved,” writes Gurri.
Instead, the past four years saw the media on TV and in the press largely treat not just President Trump, but his entire base of supporters, as irredeemable racists and traitors.
And with the inauguration of Joe Biden, this trend will likely accelerate rather than decline, as news outlets like the New York Times and Washington Post have learned that painting half of the nation as an existential threat to the very existence of America has served as a great business-model for both papers.
“While the impulse originated in partisan herd instinct, the discovery of a profit motive would make the change irrevocable,” adds Gurri.
This strategy has certainly helped stop the decline both papers have been going through since the dawn of the 21st century, and at the same time, replacing objective reporting with “post-journalism” has produced a loyal following of readers and subscribers.
These financial incentives for paper and TV outlets to continue to paint conservatives and libertarians as ignorant, evil, and racist, mean that there is little chance of the mainstream media treating roughly half of America with any sort of fairness or respect anytime soon.
A prime example of this was the New York Times’ decision to create the “1619 Project”, which attempts to rewrite American history into one where the country was founded on “racism and white supremacy.”
In the words of the New York Times’ executive editor Dean Baquet, these were “the forces that led to the election of Donald Trump.” The unspoken narrative the Times is pushing, is that the opposite is what led to the election of Joe Biden, whom the press will treat as a savior from the dark days of the Trump era, rather than a flawed human being who will need to be held accountable by the press.
“Revolutions tend to radicalization. The same is true of social media mobs: they grow ever more extreme until they explode. But the New York Times is neither of these things—it’s a business, and post-journalism is now its business model,” concludes Gurri.
“The demand for moral clarity, pressed by those who own the truth, must increasingly resemble a quest for radical conformism; but for nonideological reasons, the demand cannot afford to leave subscriber opinion too far behind. Radicalization must balance with the bottom line.”