Journalists Hate You.
Posted on: 03/18/2020 06:34 PM

What they call racism, we call discernment--among other things.


Review of Andrew Marantz’s Antisocial: Online Extremists, Techno-Utopians, and the Hijacking of the American Conversation.

by Daniel Addison


America is in the midst of a democratic revolution. Anti-establishment conservatives have used the internet to break the mainstream media’s control of the national conversation. In doing so, they were able to win over a critical mass of ordinary Americans, dealing a deathblow to traditional gatekeeping. This is the revolution that made a Trump presidency possible.

The gatekeepers want their power back, so it’s no surprise they present conservative social media influencers as racists and misogynists. What is shocking, however, is how brazenly they cast ordinary Americans as vicious and stupid. To these journalists, Trump voters are either morally or rationally defective—probably both. “If the Trump era has taught us anything,” Noah Berlatsky wrote on Friday for NBC, “it’s that large numbers of white people in the United States are motivated at least in part by racism in the voting booth.” Berlatsky finds it “reasonable to conclude that voters were willing to swallow the falsehoods because they liked what they heard: overt racist appeals.”

Senior CNN Reporter Oliver Darcy says citizens resist his reporting because they “just won’t digest facts.” They, therefore, need guidance from gatekeepers; for Darcy, it’s a tragedy that “technology companies have … given everybody the same ability to broadcast their views, unfiltered really, to millions and millions of people.” New York Times columnist Kevin Roose also thinks we must shut the revolution down, lamenting how “YouTube, Reddit and Facebook have allowed fringe thinkers to bypass traditional gatekeepers and reach millions of people directly.”


Journalists Hate You.





A significant new book by Andrew Marantz, a staff writer at the New Yorker, has reinvigorated the gatekeepers’ efforts to censor the internet. Antisocial: Online Extremists, Techno-Utopians, and the Hijacking of the American Conversation is an account of our ongoing democratic revolution, a historical moment that brings into relief two realizations for Marantz: (1) conservative influencers are now able to out-compete legacy media outlets, and (2) it was this that led to the election of Donald J. Trump. “[T]hey helped propel their man to the presidency,” he writes.

For Marantz, these two realizations justify all-out censorship of the internet. But his extremism comes as little surprise when you recognize that, from start to finish, Marantz’s argument is grounded in his contempt for the intellectual and moral capacities of ordinary Americans.*

*(NOTE: The author won't say it but we will: Marantz’s argument is grounded in his contempt for the intellectual and moral capacities of ordinary White Americans. --ed.)

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