“Only the Rich Can Save Us Now.”
HuffPo Finally Finds a Suitor
Our Arianna Huffington is all grown up now, announcing that AOL has bought The Huffington Post. The virtual brass ring of “progressive” media has finally settled on a big, fat suitor as the deal came down on Super Bowl Sunday.
What do we have here? Either an obituary OR a new beginning, where the undisputed doyenne of sensationalist political blogging could turn the corporate AOL brand into an uncensored news outlet that truly benefits the American people by marginalizing the Neo-Frat Boy Corporate State perps instead of the educated American middle class for a change. It could happen.
Let's start with the obituary.
Agenda driven news outlets are typical and as old as Methuselah, but 2005's Huffington Post debut will go down in the history books as revolutionary for incorporating journalists, celebrities, politicians, economists and a slew of corporate sycophants (bloggers) with millions of ordinary people (commenters) in a caste oriented, Victorian UPSTAIRS/DOWNSTAIRS format that would make Gandhi and Dickens both spin in their ethers. The Huffington Post's unique online salon format broke ground by sensationalizing the “far Left” reaction to G.W. Bush's unarguably horrible eight year ride across the U.S. Constitution while jobs for educated Americans were and continue to be sold out to the lowest foreign bidder which HuffPo's agenda driven editors conspicuously omitted. But the blog's ONE everlasting redeeming legacy will forever be known by enormously entertaining commenting plebes like “Moe, Larry and Jesus” and others who burned the online midnight oil as they raged against the machine. All good, all good.
Not to mention the weekly upper left hand column that featured Arianna's undeniably rich essays and insights which really had legs back in the day.
Here is my all-time favorite from the Divine Ms. Stassinopoulos entitled Obama Happens: A Cautionary Tale for Perfect Little Hillarys Everywhere that struts her writing chops, mingling brilliant political insight and a telling touch of sour grapes mash with a whimsical bent for enchanting fairy tale fiction that only the mistress of real girl writing could artfully serve up with such precision and conviction. (Yours truly had commented on this post, but the message today reads “Comments for this entry are currently under maintenance but will be restored soon.” At least they haven't scrubbed the whole post.)
The charismatic and enterprising Arianna Huffington put the “P” in personality and featured wit master Stephen Colbert with The Gettysburg Address of Comedy: Colbert's 2006 Bush Roast who put the “T” in truthiness along with Al Gore whom she helped throw the book at Global Warming. It was never so much a question as who Arianna Huffington was, as renowned investigative journalist Maureen Orth left no stone unturned in her 1994 award winning Vanity Fair article entitled Arianna's Virtual Candidate or who she's carrying water for. What tangible displays of integrity and solidarity towards the educated American middle class has she demonstrated in her high profile “progessive” media push to stop the increasing marginalization by the Neo-Frat Boy Corporate State?
So how would a large corporate tax cutter cow like AOL possibly embrace the unprecedented need for uncensored, uncontaminated, non-culty and objective investigative journalism at the local level with Arianna Huffington?
If it's any consolation, AOL plans to put Arianna in charge of capitalizing on crowd control at the very local level with online “local” news Patch.com. WTF is this? Salem Witch hunt season in America? Or will AH configure Patch.com to resurrect all the talented journalists kicked to the curb by the integrity challenged Neo-Frat Boy Corporate State? That would depend upon whether or not the On Becoming Fearless book author loathes educated middle class Americans as much as Chris Hedges says self-appointed corporate sponsored media elites in America tend to do, as he writes in his latest essay Recognizing the Language of Tyranny:
“Those who administer empire—elected officials, corporate managers, generals and the celebrity courtiers who disseminate the propaganda—become very wealthy. They make immense fortunes whether they deliver the nightly news, sit on the boards of corporations, or rise, lavished with corporate endorsements, within the vast industry of spectacle and entertainment. They all pay homage, even in moments defined as criticism, to the essential goodness of corporate power. They shut out all real debate. They ignore flagrant injustices and abuse. They peddle the illusions that keep us passive and amused. But as our society is reconfigured into an oligarchic system, with a permanent and vast underclass, along with a shrinking and unstable middle class, these illusions lose their power. The language of pleasant deception must be replaced with the overt language of force. It is hard to continue to live in a state of self-delusion once unemployment benefits run out, once the only job available comes without benefits or a living wage, once the future no longer conforms to the happy talk that saturates our airwaves. At this point rage becomes the engine of response, and whoever can channel that rage inherits power. The manipulation of that rage has become the newest task of the corporate propagandists, and the failure of the liberal class to defend core liberal values has left its members with nothing to contribute to the debate.”
While AH is an excellent writer of Swiftian proportions and a knowledgeable connoisseur of history, the agenda driven HuffPo blog gradually degenerated into a slow as molasses loading, cult-driven house of hysteria as it succeeded in its apparent divide and conquer mission of pitting American citizens against each other with endlessly boring and predictable faux Left/Right screeds from featured bloggers that hatefully pitched against “hate speech” by deploying hate speech. BORING. Adding insult to injury, both teabaggers (Right) and fleabaggers (Left) flooded the comments section in empty headed tail-chasing exercises, albeit some entertaining. But all too soon the monotonic voice of GROUPTHINK aka wisdom of the laugh out louds reared its anti-individualistic conformity head and buh-bye, open forum, intelligent discussion driven media model and the smart people it rode in on. The name of the game is co-option.
R.I.P., Huffington Post? Or is there an Afterlife “good” reincarnation waiting in the wings for what pro-American worker agenda driven journalism could be once AH digs her heels into AOL? As Ralph Nader says, only the rich can save us now.
Score ONE for the Dark Side as it co-opts another talented writer into the gates of Hell's monopolistic, cult-driven Neo-Frat Boy Corporate State's One Big Money Party black hole that is sucking the life out of educated middle class Americans across this country. With Arianna's expanded role at AOL, maybe she can help turn that tide around and even find something for cutting edge investigative journalists like Maureen Orth to do, too.
Party on, plebes!