February 12th, 2013

The problem with starting an alternative media on the right

We’ve been saying for quite some time that one thing that’s needed is to start an alternative media source on the right. Fox is not enough.

But there’s an inherent problem with that, and it’s not just the fact that it can be hard to find experienced newspeople who aren’t liberals. The much more basic problem with an alternative conservative media is that the media on the right has been so demonized—and any alternative media would be equally demonized—that Democrats and even many of those in the middle have been taught that it’s unreliable and will not watch it, and/or they automatically discount what it says.

Fox News, for example, is “Faux News,” and most people I know laugh when it’s suggested they watch it, as though it were a Pravda of the right. The funny thing is that they are unaware that the MSM they do watch is closer to the old Soviet Pravda at this point (although a voluntary one); they are unaware of their own susceptibility to propaganda and how greatly influenced they are by it. So any new media source on the right will be “Fauxized,” much as any new exciting conservative politician is Palinized (see what happened to Ryan, and what’s starting to happen to Rubio). It’s a full court propaganda press, in which the MSM determines for the most part what the valid sources are, and the right is by definition unreliable.

Periodicals on the right such as National Review, Weekly Standard, and Commentary are either not heard of by non-political-junkies in the middle or liberals (leftists, who tend to be quite involved, often know quite a bit about them, if only to counter them)—or, if heard of, rarely read. For example, I’m not aware of having any liberal friends who read them; I tend to get blank stares of non-recognition if I even mention them.

If you read my “A mind is a difficult thing to change” pieces, you may note that discovering these other sources of information and opinion was one of the sparks for my change experience. In 2000 I happened to stop delivery of all periodicals and began to get my media information primarily online. After 9/11 I became more interested in the news and read more than I had before in general, and I was so naive (and somewhat isolated at the time, having been recently separated from my husband and living in a new town) that I didn’t even know I was reading sources on the right when I read pieces from the big three, as well as newspapers I now know are somewhat to the right. But at the time, I just knew I was reading a lot of really interesting stuff that made a lot of sense, more sense than my old sources (NY Times, Boston Globe, New Yorker) were making at the same time (I had continued reading them, too, so I was able to compare). It was only much later that I learned, to my shock, that those new periodicals I was reading were on the right. I had previously known about the National Review, but not the others.

Believe me, when I found out, I was flabbergasted and really thrown. But the “damage,” as it were, had been done, and there was no turning back.

But my story is an unusual one. Unfortunately, it appears more and more that sources on the right, although popular, are a case of preaching to the choir, talking to the already-convinced. I’m not at all sure how that could be countered.

52 Responses to “The problem with starting an alternative media on the right”

  1. ziontruth Says:

    It’s a zero-sum game of Mainstream Media Monopoly, and winning it is the greatest challenge of our times. I’m reminded of the bit in Spaceballs where Lone Star details the steps needed to stop the Spaceballs’ designs on Planet Druidia, then he’s asked, “Isn’t that dangerous?” and he replies, “Extremely. Plus… I don’t know how we’re gonna do it.”

    An alternative media isn’t the goal. The hard-Left has achieved the desired goal: That within the bounds of the mainstream media, people have no (or nearly no) choice except their offerings. Only reversing this situation to be the opposite can be considered a victory over Marxist oppression. The problem is how to unseat the Leftist MSM outlets quickly and in great numbers; an even bigger problem is I’m not sure there’s a legal way to do it. Talk radio and the conservative blogosphere are little more than the equivalents of clandestine shortwave in the Soviet Union.

  2. Ray Says:

    I think the public now realizes the media have voluntarily turned themselves into the US version of Pravda. Thats why people ignore them and they are going bankrupt.

  3. G Joubert Says:

    Maybe it’ll happen the way it happened with you.

    Aided by the fact that the old media is dead or is dying on the vine. As it fades people will do what you did: look for alternative sources, which nowadays means online.

    So keep on keeping on. Your blog readership, for instance, may and probably does include “lurkers” (readers who read but never comment) with liberal notions, but looking for alternatives. Your personal migration story tells them that’s normal and okay, even healthy. So, as I say, keep on keeping on.

  4. Matthew Walker Says:

    That’s the wrong course anyway.

    One thing to do is infiltrate and “corrupt” the institutions people people already trust. We need connected PR firms shopping appealing, pre-packaged stories which introduce sane ideas in a warm-and-fuzzy, palatable way. Slip them conservative facts with liberal trimmings, and some explicit assurances that the author and subjects are liberals.

    You know all those trend stories in the NYT where the “trend” consists of three of the journalist’s friends from Williamsburg? That kind of stuff.

    They trust almost any content at all as long as it comes in the kind of packaging they’ve been trained to trust.

    This is not my idea, but it’s a good one.

  5. Ann Says:

    Complicating all this is the fact that more and more people are getting their information via Yahoo, Facebook, and Twitter, and folks like Jon Stewart.

    Which means soundbites more than ever rule the day.

  6. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    Every single major media outlet is controlled and owned by publicly held parent companies. Which means a controlling interest in those parent companies determines the journalistic agenda of the major media companies.

  7. gcotharn Says:

    Culture. It is a long term fight, yet is where the war will be won or lost. Begin to win the culture fight, and your news sources will begin to be read.

    Breitbart. Andrew Klavan. James O’Keefe. They know how to fight the culture fight. The Left are now the power; the fuddy-duddies who are dug in and committed to yesterday’s failed ideas. The Right are now the cool rebels. Be cool and rebellious. Fight the power.

  8. T Says:


    SInce I have been one of the voices calling for an alternative media, I feel obligated to respond.

    What you note is not incorrect. I offer, however, that your concerns (“It’s a full court propaganda press . . . . “) are the application of the current situation to a development perhaps 5 years hence (it’s like the experts claiming that we would run out of oil by 2000 because they failed to account for developing exploratory and extraction technology).

    I do agree with you in the short run; that is precisely the obstacle that the right must currently overcome. That’s why it must be a multifaceted front, not only networks, and blogs, but popular culture magazines (H/T Glenn reynolds) and other non-news media as well.

    As the battle begins, the traditionalist message will be derided and mocked, (the same technique that the left uses to control the national dialogue) but repeated over and over again and by more and more media sources, the message can eventually become to big to ignore.

    IMO one of the only reasons the leftist message has been successful at all is primarily because there seems to have been no alternative, no countercurrent, no widespread dissension (“If no one dissents from the message, it must be correct.”) I think ther are two reasons for that: First, any dissension is buried by the leftist messengers as much as possible; but second, the traditionalist/conservative approach prides itself on fair play. Until Andrew Breitbart it has been an assymetrical propaganda war. That, too, needs to change.

  9. neo-neocon Says:

    Ray: I disagree. The people I know may have a little bit of distrust for CNN and the networks, but the Times, the Globe, the New Yorker, and especially NPR are practically sacred among so many, and certainly a great deal more respected (and known) than any new source on the right, all of which are either ignored (not read or watched, that is), distrusted, and/or ridiculed, or really a combination of all three.

    The people who feel the way you describe are probably conservatives anyway.

  10. G Joubert Says:

    There’s more to it too. Eight years of Bush left the Republican brand horribly damaged. Not so much because of Bush’s policies (although some of them didn’t help- he was NOT a conservative), but mainly because he never responded to the deluge and onslaught of over-the-top assaults by the left and the MSM which went on unrelentingly. I guess he and Karl Rove were taking the high road, apparently missing the basic truth that if one isn’t willing to defend one’s own honor, who will? Your enemies will occupy the void and define you, which is what happened. It’s going to take a herculean effort to overcome that and rebrand.

  11. Scott Says:

    Neo is correct. Any new media will be marginalized like Fox News has. This is why I think the only solution is to try to forcefully discredit leftism and the leftist media. The left has succeeded in “othering” all conservative thought and has given low information voters the vague sense that R’s and Fox news etc. are racists, bigots, hate women and the like.

    Any conservatives in the public eye need to loudly denounce D’s and their media at every opportunity. How? call them liars and say why; call them racists for not supporting school choice; accuse them of genocidal motivations and cite the disparate impact of abortion on blacks; pit hispanics against blacks telling each group that the D’s support the other at their expense; tell Asians that D’s support racial discrimination against Asians; say that D’s plan to seize by force all guns and cite one loser D who has said something like that and make him stand for the whole party (Todd Akin anybody?.); anytime you disagree with D policy, accuse them of the worst motivations behind it; I could go on.

    When they (D’s and media) shriek and howl, call them liars who are engaged in a cover-up and repeat your accusations again and again and again. If the last election has taught us anything it is that baseless assertions work (war on women?). We have the advantage that our accusations are true or at least based on truth.

    Of course this is a vile strategy that will result in an ugly race to the bottom but it is the only way. We are in an alley fight and we can no longer play by the Queensbury rules expecting the media to act as referee. Our opponents bring chains and pipes to the alley; the referee enters the fray a club of his own. Its time bring in our own dirty instruments and make sure that everybody in the alley is bloodied and beaten. Sounds great doesn’t it? But it is the only way.

    This can be considered one manifestation of the Horowitz strategy in honor of his article last week.

  12. T Says:

    G Joubert,

    . . . [G W Bush] never responded to the deluge and onslaught of over-the-top assaults by the left and the MSM which went on unrelentingly. I guess he and Karl Rove were taking the high road, apparently missing the basic truth that if one isn’t willing to defend one’s own honor, who will? Your enemies will occupy the void and define you . . . .

    I agree. As I noted above an asymmetrical propaganda war (which was carried to an extreme by the left against a non-responsive G W Bush).

  13. T Says:


    “. . . the only solution is to try to forcefully discredit leftism and the leftist media . . . .”

    I would suggest that this is not “the only solution” but one of the other fronts I alluded to above. I think it’s an especially important method of attack, too.

  14. Scott Says:


    Agreed. Just one part of a multi-part plan.

  15. T Says:

    Baseless assertions might work, but assertions based on fact and substantiated will work even better when properly propogated.

    The left give us so much ammunition there is no need to make stuff up (for example):

    just use them against themselves and, as Alinsky noted, make them live by their own rules.

  16. T Says:

    that’s “propagated”. sorry.

  17. George Pal Says:

    “…a case of preaching to the choir, talking to the already-convinced. I’m not at all sure how that could be countered.”

    A scattershot counter.

    First, stop strategizing the next election.

    The recent National Review Institute Summit has already begun doing just that.

    from James Kirkpatrick reporting (at the summit):

    “Peter Brimelow, author of 1997 NR cover story, Electing A New People, co-authored with Ed Rubenstein, was absolutely not mentioned.”

    a panel at the summit: “a representative cross-section of the American Right consisted of a gay marriage-supporting second-generation Bangladeshi immigrant (moderator Reihan Salam), three Jews (Bill Kristol, Yuval Levin, John Podhoretz) and two employees of the liberal MSM (Ross Douthat, New York Times; Joe Scarborough, MSNBC)”.

    “Joe Scarborough was the most forceful here. Instead of the take-no-prisoners approach to fiscal matters of the Tea Parties and the libertarians, Scarborough wants “moderation.” He slammed “stifling group-think,” especially on fiscal matters, that prevent Republicans from cutting deals”.

    “The Main Stream Media, which extensively covered the conference (see Dave Weigel, Jonathon Chait, and Jonathan Krohn) was, alas, quite right to note that there wasn’t much actual soul searching—except for a near-consensus (among the speakers) on the need to pass amnesty for illegal aliens.”

    This is not the National Review, where I had first heard W. F. Buckley’s promise that it “stands athwart history, yelling Stop.” This is the National Review giving up standing athwart history and taking up straddling the fence yelling not so fast, we can’t keep up. This is not Conservatism.

    Second, offer an interesting putdown instead of strategizing the next election.

    Ivan Klima re the Prague revolution 1989:
    “Revolutions are usually marked by high-sounding slogans and flags; blood flows, or at least glass is shattered and stones fly.

    The November revolution, which earned the epithet “velvet”, differed from other revolutions not only in its peacefulness, but also in the main weapon used in the struggle. It was ridicule. … The citizens of Prague delivered the coup de grace to their despised rulers not with a sword, but with a joke.”

    I’ll admit making satire of the satirical is difficult but then again it writes itself doesn’t it – thousand page bills passed without being read; the appeal of power through vagueness, i.e., the appeal to SCOTUS for penumbral casts or judicially editing legislation to fit the enumerated powers.

    No ridicule of the opposition would be too outlandish; nor would those ostensibly conservative, ostensibly on ‘our side’ be spared – the rogue elephant page. Strangle civility, mock unmercifully, mock as unPC as possible, the anti-Constitutional, anti-traditional, anti-freedom, pro-indefensible DHS, TSA, Dept. of Education etc. If the average member of Congress and the Administration cannot be made a clown unworthy of being taken seriously it’s only because everyone is strategizing the next election.

    Third, one conservative opportunity after another slips by as we are strategizing the next election.

    Dr. Benjamin Carson has made many of the conservative blogs with his Prayer Breakfast speech with Obama in attendance, dour and unappreciative of all Dr. Carson had to say. The opportunity is gold but we’re busy strategizing the next election.

    Offer Dr. Benjamin a contribution of half a million dollars (Messrs Koch, et al) to his scholar’s fund for the use of his speech in a documentary. Thirty minutes of history, successful men and women who had overcome hardships and bigotry and had made something of themselves through education. Thirty minutes of the Doctor’s speech. Thirty minutes of what it is about conservatism that cares about people so much more than the Left’s inducements to slavishness. Offer the documentary to schools, institutions, everywhere – provide speakers. Update, augment, and incorporate other issues into the series making it not a two-year project but a forty-two year project.

    Finally, stop strategizing the next damned election.

  18. Mike Says:

    Shouting is what works best. Loudly. All the time. In people’s faces. Mightily and with the greatest flair possible….if possible.

    Meek musings about how tough and unfair it is has negative effect.

  19. Occam's Beard Says:

    Fox News, for example, is “Faux News,” and most people I know laugh when it’s suggested they watch it, as though it were a Pravda of the right.

    The irony is that Pravda is actually a better source of news than the NYT or WaPo. Check it out (english.pravda.ru) and see if you don’t agree.

    Truly, these are the End Times.

  20. G Joubert Says:

    I’m reminded of neo’s post yesterday about sharks. Whenever a Republican is thrown into the water the left and MSM go on a full tilt feeding frenzy, and they don’t stop until they’re destroyed. Sarah Palin is the best example, but she’s by no means the only one. Herman Cain, anyone? And it isn’t new either. It basically started with Nixon, and they’ve been doing it ever since. They tried hard to do it to Reagan (the “amiable dunce”), they did it to Dan Quayle, and there have been others. The list is long. I fully expect Dr. Carson to get a full dose.

    This to me is the most insidious thing thay must be countered. It’s done immeasurable damage, it kills rising stars before they get started, and it discourages them from even getting involved in the first place.

  21. Occam's Beard Says:

    For example, the op-ed “The Rise of Bolshevik America?” contains these quotes:

    In his recent presidential directives President Obama has added something that most publications have been silent about; forcing doctors, and other health care providers to ask questions regarding gun ownership of patients. Ostensibly this is to ‘find crazy people before they do something’ but it reeks of the same system of informants the KGB used in an era before people happily posted all their private thoughts on the Internet. Is this truly an effort to keep people safer, or a sign of things to come?

    How far is America from the Bolshevik State? The administration is already forcing health care providers to report on the activities of other citizens. How soon will American children be reporting ‘revolutionary activities’ to their teachers? How soon will American priests essentially compose a secret informant network? How soon will neighbors begin calling in about one another in hopes of avoiding being sent ‘somewhere’ themselves? If Obama, who associated with militant communists like Bill Ayers, and the Weather Underground during his college days, pretty soon, and he shows no signs of letting the American congress have a say.

  22. Occam's Beard Says:


  23. Clayton Bigsby Says:

    “Finding the occasional straw of truth awash in a great ocean of confusion and bamboozle requires intelligence, vigilance, dedication and courage. 
    But if we don’t practice these tough habits of thought, we cannot hope to solve the truly serious problems that face us – and we risk becoming a nation of suckers, up for grabs by the next charlatan who comes along.”  ~Carl Sagan, The Fine Art of Baloney Detection

    I don’t know about you, but I have no problem telling my doctor “that’s none of your f?ck/ng business” as is my SS#.
    l, like King O, have associated with people in my life that I am not proud of but I have moved on, based on my own values not someone else’s .
    I see a huge problem on the right (where I’ve been my entire life and moving farther so) with OUR nutty aunts and uncles in the attic.
    When I see the Alex Jones’s and Glenn Becks alluding to if not espousing conspiracy theories re: Secret service or special forces shooting school kids, or cancer viruses in vaccines it’s one thing….. When I see my trusted sources like Drudge linking to these nut balls, I throw up in my mouth a little.

    Maybe if you’re not Hannity or O’Reilly and want traffic you gotta be a side show barker, and lord knows there are plenty of people out there wanting to have a look, but this drags us all down. By us, I mean those who CHOOSE to think…which is always the more difficult act.

    This gun ban episode has brought all kinds of people outta the woodwork…as it has many times in the past…. many thoughtful individuals, also many chicken little types.
    Many on the left.
    I’ve been a gun enthusiast most of my life and frequent gun shows, online forums, blogs, etc.
    The amount of crap flying around is mind boggling and if you’re involved at all, sooner or later you’re gonna hear discussions about SHTF weapons survival philosophies and so on and conspiracy examples will almost always lead to links to these wacko sites’ stories.
    No matter where you stand on the necessity of survival planning, we need to put a sane face forward to these new potential gun owners, particularly the lefties, and any alternative conservative news site would do well to look at supporting these communities as MOST of the gun enthusiasts I know are sane,contemplative, intelligent level headed folks….not fringers.

  24. parker Says:

    I don’t watch news on TV, although I do watch snippets on my computer. But, I do once in a while check ratings. Fox is typically far ahead of the other cable networks when it comes to ‘news’ coverage. Why assume a more balanced network over the airwaves, could not with time, achieve the success of Fox and leave ABC, CBS, and NBC in the dust?

    The old media (NYT, etc.) are slowly but surely going the way of Argentinosaurus via bankruptcy. NPR exists with government funding, otherwise it is extinct. Its a trench war of attrition.

  25. southpaw Says:

    Occam’s Beard – nothing like getting your nose rubbed in it. I can just see some poor schlubb getting hauled off to a re-education center because his daughter didn’t get the pony for her birthday.
    “My daddy made a 10 minute movie on Youtube about Obama being a liar” Next thing you know, they will be handcuffing him, putting a bag over his head, and whisking off to jail. Oh… nevermind, I’m getting this mixed up with another goverment program.
    When I travel internationally, I often watch the Russian version of CNN International — I think it’s RUS TV or something like that. It’s shockingly more conservative and far less critical of the USA than CNN or BBC. CNN Int. is about as irritating as you can get, followed by BBC.
    But I think we’ve still got another stage of humiliation before we get to the end times. Our republic first needs to go through the banana republic stage before the end times. The beginning of the banana phase is marked by frequent and flagrant abuses of federal law by the chief executive, unchecked illegal immigration, indifference to crushing debt, and heavy reliance on demogogery to sway public opinion toward more reckless spending and abuse of law. Further symptons include the rise of a ruling class composed of career politicians who go to Washington poor and retire 30 years later as millionaires, and a second class of popular media and entertainment figures who latch on to this class, supporting and nurturing it. The banana republic stage is designed to to accomodate the changing demographics of the US, and make the new arrivals feel right at home.
    Fortunately, we are a long way from this.

  26. Artfldgr Says:

    I’m not at all sure how that could be countered.

    It can’t. Your not actually just fighting what you think your fighting if you don’t add in all the players and wallets and so on. One should realize that this has been a contiguous game with overlapping generations of players coming in and going out spanning the dawn of our side of civilization. No?

    Before people waste time on things that can’t ever be for easy reasons why, why not figure out what the game is, and what the weak points are and so on? Most of the time there is an acknowledgement of a fact, but not the desire to get into it.

    How do you think all the other places got co-opted?
    What was the process of changing them? How was it done?
    What’s the nature of the conflict?
    Who are your friends? Who are your frenemies?

    Costs of economic espionage mount

    An ominous pattern of economic espionage has cost American companies at least $13 billion in recent years as corporate spies sell everything from chemical secrets to military technology – with China being the most persistent perpetrator, according to federal authorities.

    13 billion from people who are not so naïve as to plan without considering them, and thinking that anything that would affect the landscape would be allowed to grow and screw their game up…

    Oh… there are ways that the game gets screwed up, but not the way the people here have been talking… normal companies that deal in technology worries about spies, co-option, and so on… and the ideas I see bantered around here all want to pretend that’s crazy stuff, so we just leave it out.

    anyone other than I realize that if people had this idea of the world and tried to grow a company or a concern and worked from the basis of a wrong perspective of reality, that their chances of success are pretty much nil?

    A company that grew to be important enough to completely influence the whole of the political landscape doesn’t need to be obsessed with others “wishing to take their hard work and turn it to their own purposes”.

    Ford lost the ford foundation… You think you would do better?

    may I ask why anyone with all those resources and a promise of safety if they stay out of it, would bother to get into it to save the poor people that want to rob them and take all they earn?

    have it behind closed doors with the people who can make something happen…

    i really don’t like raining on the parade, but ya going to have to figure out stuff that works, cant be blocked, does not require some billionaire we don’t know with a martyr syndrome, and so on.

    go ahead, build a formal entity, and then watch it get taken since the law mandates that you cant keep people out. so the minute you look at some leftist chick that applies for the job, and you don’t hire her and let her in, she is going to sue your ass for oppressing the female whatnot and either she is in, or you pay. It doesn’t matter that you have other women there, and there are more than men… it wont matter in one iota… as there is a longer parade of people who will try than you have money to pay for.

    Those laws mean that you cant keep someone out without other laws negating those laws (like national security). That’s why all those companies and media and stuff has been co-pted… you have to be PC… the right to choose who you associate was broken by feminists… not for women’s rights, but for their stated goal… (Why people don’t believe a stated goal is beyond me. Its an open confession by the leaders and it don’t register).

    maybe its time now to read the erin pizzey stuff as to the first women’s shelters and how the left took them over from her… no? She built a grassroots organization to serve the public – men and women. she was quite sane in her views of personalities and so on. but helping women is the lefts job… and so she is your historical example number one as to what happens.

    been trying to clue you all on what you need to know for over five years now… hasn’t worked as you haven’t figured out why its important to you. perhaps if you want to be effective in a game that’s older than everyone, you might need to learn the game the way the players know it, not the way the cows and sheep and pets do.

    but its like your description up above neo…

    How do you convince someone that is in that state of mind? When they are ready to harass you for being too long, and to not get what they need to know, and so on.

    Remember the tsun tsu posts… if you know yourself, etc…

    Now your coming around to ideas that you have to act, but five years been wasted not learning about the dark side of their politics that seldom sees the light. However, when you do see it, it confirms that behind and in the dark, there are things going on. And it takes time to learn how to wade through it and not get snooked by the bs over there. After all, if the worlds agencies didn’t play games there, it would be easy to pick up and read and know whats going on, what side, and so on. So they play games. Injecting false information, real information, and so on and so on. You can’t even trust your own side!!!

    Just as you read a side and then compared and learned that things are not as they seem. you have yet to dig deeper. Its an onion not an apple…

    if your going to do poly sci, then your going to have to learn about that darker side of politics… you cant ignore them, as they wont ignore you if you get on the radar enough (or even have potential and they notice early).

  27. Artfldgr Says:

    So keep on keeping on. Your blog readership, for instance, may and probably does include “lurkers” (readers who read but never comment) with liberal notions

    BINGO!!! give that man a kewpie doll!!!!!!

    THATs why i put what i put up… why i don’t put stuff in a blog (besides their coming to my home to harass me already in the past), i preach where the convertible sinners hang out

    more than once tiffs over my writing has gotten a lurker to come out and say something as to what they are learning…

    your all talking about a media thing, and you dont even know where neo stands on alexa. what the breakdown of people who read and so on…

    neo is 64,212 in the US…
    there are 918 sites linking to her
    Ed Driscoll quotes us…
    others pick up ideas from us…

    and yet you guys are discussing what to do

    go watch alexa and see what draws people
    and i am pretty sure that its not the fluff stuff

    the more fluff, the less reason there is to come here
    the more we discuss things that really mean something that people want to know about and no one is giving them stuff they dont know, the more people come.

    glenn beck got so big because he was teaching people what was left out of their education. he was revealing things in the background, showing books one can read to learn more and so on.

    breitbart? the same

    drudge? the drudge report is a collection of links to the stuff that people want to know about…

    you guys already have a billionaire on your side, and your ignoring it looking outside. who owns the software and systems that neo is on? that’s your friend…

    how many people came here and read about the dems and slavery? how many came and read about what i posted as to Pinkerston and Ouichita parish? or that occam did..

    they are tired of opinion news. they want facts they can judge for themselves… neos conversion was over facts, not great opinion pieces with witty comebacks. but facts she could compare and then know, who was lying to her…

    my thing is to show that its systemic, not just a trend

    which is why i kind of get peeved at the guys who make up things that sound good and right, and are not derivative of the actual facts. they do so much harm. they are the informational equivalent of fog and confusion!!!!! and if they come up with a really good sounding reason that is not true, it will sprout legs and the opposition will take it up as a shield to deflect people from which fact is factual.

    in many ways i wish they would piss in the toilet and not in the well.

  28. Artfldgr Says:

    Which means soundbites more than ever rule the day. – Ann

    yup. you should see how a small set of people harangue and snipe, and so on, with the idea of wanting entertaining short posts and kwippy stuff…

    just enough time for a joke or a tweak
    but not enough time for anything meaningful or principled… which is the point…

    imagine a debate where the debaters dont get to talk for 5 minutes… but only get to make one sentence!

    it would be pointless to have…
    because the time is to put concept against concept
    and the format of short is more suited to someone like Don Rickles

    i also find it funny that they want to do the leftist thing. and that is change where they are, rather than go someplace else to get what they want if where they are isnt serving it. so the left wont get a ticket and move to a country that has what they want, they have to destroy where they are to have it here. not much different as i see it…

    neither can abide their own home, so neither can be happy where they roam.

    heck, i could tell them things in one sentence, but then i would have something like “Dancing Lessons for the Advanced in Age”… by Bohumil Hrabal

    to quote the ny times:
    “it’s meant to make you jump out of bed in your underwear and run and beat the author’s brains out.”

    Dancing Lessons” unfurls as a single, sometimes maddening sentence that ends after 117 pages without a period, giving the impression that the opinionated, randy old cobbler will go on jawing ad infinitum. But the gambit works. His exuberant ramblings gain a propulsion that would be lost if the comma splices were curbed, the phrases divided into sentences. And there’s something about that slab of wordage that carries the eye forward, promising an intensity simply unattainable by your regularly punctuated novel.

    these guys complain about 10k words
    this man wrote a 117 page sentence…

    AND he was published, earned money and the NY times is reviewing it…

    makes me seem like Shakespeare…

    then there is “The Gates of Paradise” Jerzy Andrzejewski a run on sentence going for 158 pages
    according to the information on it, its actually two sentences… the second sentence has five words.

    the end of “Ulysses” (1922) by Molly bloom has a 36 page small type run on. but look carefully, 17 pages in she puts a period.

    Joyce also makes a cameo in the most recent candidate for the absurdly exclusive Book-as-Sentence club, the French novelist Mathias Énard’s “Zone” (2008), just published in an English translation. At 517 pages, it’s far longer than the Hrabal and Andrzejewski combined, though its status as a true single sentence is compromised by 23 chapter breaks that alleviate eye strain.

    yes… a 517 page run on sentence

    all of these books published, yet, by the short sentence brevity crowd would never exist!!!

    they keep telling me to write short…

    but but Les Miserables by viktor hugo has an 800 word sentence! didnt they make a play and a movie too?

    its funny, but if you know a lot more, a lot of what people say, and advice, and so on… really comes up silly… but they wont realize that there is this huge world outside that they dont know about, as they are too busy trying to keep it small for themselves.

    ergo.. short sentences… that way, we are all equal… no one can voice a concept more complicated than another… dumbed down to short sentences, we can regress… after all, language cant support many many words if the setences are not long and varied enough.

    Shorten sentences you shorten the dictionary, you shorten the concepts that people have to think with, and you shorten their thoughts to the length of those sentences they have to speak

    but dont tell them that. they will just get huffy and tell you your wrong, and they know that large sentences are not spoken or written by real authors.

    longest sentence in Proust – 944 words

    The Very Long Sentence could be seen as a futile hedge against separation, an unwillingness to part from loved ones, the world, life itself.

    “I’m trying to say it all in one sentence, between one Cap and one period,” William Faulkner wrote to Malcolm Cowley in 1944. “I’m still trying to put it all, if possible, on one pinhead.”

    (Faulkner, no stranger to the mind-expanding possibilities of the very long sentence, was once credited with a 1,400-worder by the Guinness Book of World Records.)

    In this age of 140-character Twitter posts — not to mention a persistent undercurrent of minimalism in our literature — there’s something profoundly rejuvenating about the very long sentence.

    For the sake of the novel, and ourselves, let’s hope that Hrabal wasn’t being prophetic when he wrote, four decades ago, “People twitter away like magpies and don’t really care.”


  29. Artfldgr Says:

    arrgh… my blockquotes got screwed up…

  30. parker Says:

    “So keep on keeping on. Your blog readership, for instance, may and probably does include “lurkers” (readers who read but never comment) with liberal notions”

    BFD…. ‘they’ already know everything about you. I’m a long time NRA member, monthly I receive my copy of American Rifleman. I routinely let my congress critters know where I stand. ‘They’ know everything about me. BFD. I’m not going to pee my pants because ‘they’ know my address or my income or what property I own.

    Use the kewpie doll for target practice. First one to hit the kewpie doll’s eyes at 400 yard wins first place on ‘their’ list of enemies of the state in your neighborhood. I’ve been an ‘enemy of the state’ for decades. My reply to the state is fold it 5 ways. When it all comes down to dust tuck fhem. My family and I have a stronghold, there we will make a stand and we are vigilant. If you are just posturing, and not prepared, you are a fool.

  31. tillurdizzy Says:

    “Complicating all this is the fact that more and more people are getting their information via Yahoo, Facebook, and Twitter, and folks like Jon Stewart.”

    Last week when we were discussing Horowitz I suggested one of the multifaceted fronts for places like Facebook and blogs is the use of memes which are so popular with the left.

    Appeal to emotion. So with that in mind I made a few.


  32. Molly NH Says:

    I agree with poster Scott’s comments.
    we need to hit at the Pravda media constantly & continually point out all their foibles & instances when they try that Alinsky monkey business. I comment on Breitbart, & there are some Left trolls that show up there, not for discussion but to put in to practice Alinsky techniques. Lately many conservative posters have been “calling” the trolls on their Alinsky ism. It has gotten a rise out of them (LOL) one guy went ballistic yelling “Ted Kaczynski, Ted Kaczynski, Ted Kacznski” So we reposted to him setting him straight that we did not mean the *Unibomer* Ted but the commie activist Sol Alinsky.
    Unfortunately the conservative movement suffers from the false narrative that to be conservative is to be racist & anti minority. I don t know how this opinion got traction but the entire Left constantly latches on to this phony meme.
    And they (MSM) refuses to be disabused of this notion, look how they jumped on Laughner (sp?) did they learn anything ?
    No, Brian Ross ABC premier journalist there ” Holmes is a member of the T party” Holmes wasn t even in the commonly accepted age bracket of a Tea Party member. The MSM REFUSE to educate themselves about conservatism & just want to advance the erroneous.

  33. M J R Says:

    “So any new media source on the right will be ‘Fauxized,’ much as any new exciting conservative politician is Palinized (see what happened to Ryan, and what’s starting to happen to Rubio).”

    That’s what I’ve thought all along.

    And watch ’em do it to Dr. Benjamin Carson, if enough people sit up and take notice of him. [Quickly scouring the comments, I see others have already pointed this out. We’re a pretty astute bunch here, aren’t we!]

  34. Eric Says:

    I agree that one of GWB’s biggest failings with long-term consequences was not countering the left’s narrative. That said, I’m not sure that he could have done it had he tried.

    My recommendation is for 2 groups – one in the GOP camp, the other in the Dems camp – aggressively reaching out to The People on either side and engage on first principles. On the GOP side, the Tea Party. On the Dems side, progressive liberals – REAL progressive liberals of the JFK and Daniel Patrick Moynihan variety.

    The Tea Party blames the GOP for betraying them when it’s the Tea Party that failed to deliver their end of the bargain with the GOP.

    The Tea Party promised a national populist movement but once a few of them were elected to Congress, they declined to reach beyond their existing in-group. The Tea Party chose the lazy path and reneged on their promise.

    The Tea Party needs to return to its original promise and focus on fighting and expanding at the populist level. If they take ground in the national culture war, they will have an accompanying increase in power and influence that will compel the GOP to follow their lead.

    On the Dems side, real progressive liberals need to reclaim the liberal left from the Marxist infiltrators who have corrupted liberal initiatives for the last half century.

    The Marxists are expert at disguising themselves with liberal language and co-opting liberal initiatives, but there’s a fundamental difference between Marxists and liberals. The Marxists’ first principle is oppressor vs oppressed. The liberals’ first principle is civilization vs barbarism.

    In practice, Marxists engage in an adversarial, zero-sum competition that seeks maximal benefit for their clients with no regard for the greater good. The Marxists have no restraint in their client advocacy – think Animal Farm.

    Progressive liberals do have a restraining check: they seek equitable balance for the greater good. Real progressives are loyal to principle before client and practice tolerant cooperation, not zero-sum competition.

    The current Dems trend that’s called liberal isn’t liberal – it’s Marxist. If real progressive liberals can muster and reclaim the Dems and American liberalism from the Marxists, while the Tea Party rallies the right and the GOP, the energized American center-left and center-right can rescue this country.

  35. Artfldgr Says:

    “The earth hath then become small, and on it there hoppeth the last man who maketh everything small.” Nietzsche

  36. Baltimoron Says:

    The most important thing here is to recognize the audience. You’re trying to get to people who don’t pay much attention to the news in general. They’re probably marginal Democrats; people who like the Democratic party in the abstract, but are unhappy with the details. They aren’t the kind of people who would read The Weekly Standard (or The New Republic for that matter).
    So with that in mind, here are a few things I think a good conservative outlet would need:

    – Do real news. Too many conservative websites are always chasing the latest twitter controversy or complaining about a New York Times op-ed by some guy no one’s heard of. Political junkies love this stuff, but everyone else finds it boring. Stick to the big issues of the day and tell people how it affects them.

    – Make people laugh. This is important for two reasons. First, you’re making news for people who don’t like watching/reading the news. It has to be entertaining. Second, it is almost impossible to mock something that’s intentionally funny. The guys at Fox are open to criticism because they take themselves way too seriously.

    – Don’t be hacks. If you want people to take you seriously, you have to be more than just a cheerleader for the Republican party. Tell stories that are inconvenient to conservatives, criticize GOP politicians when they need it and have serious liberals on to give their opinions (and by “serious” I mean people liberals take seriously. Ignore the gadflies and crazies)

    – Do more than just politics. This is one of the things I love about this site. You’ve got art, literature and the occasional old Rescue 911 clip mixed in with politics. Conservative news needs more of this. If you go over to the Huffington Post, you’ll find everything from movie reviews to recipes to celebrity gossip (I realize that last one clashes somewhat with my first point). They bring in all sorts of people who aren’t interested in a news only site.

    OK I’m done now.

  37. T Says:


    All good suggestions for multiple fronts as the adults begin (we hope) to tak back the national dialogue.

  38. holmes Says:

    I still think taking over school systems is an easier, more achievable, goal. School systems are mostly local and it’s not that difficult to take over a school board with a little concerted effort. Conservatives also tend to hide their politics in schools and other venues because it seems unseemly to them. No more. Indoctrination is not the way to go, but rather teaching the kids to actually think logically and inure them against propaganda would pay many dividends.

  39. njartist49 Says:

    Page long sentences were once common: the writer expected the reader to have or acquire the mental ability to follow the concepts convolving through the page long sentences. I first encountered these page long sentences in high school when I read Edmund Burke (’60s): his sentences sometimes went on for two pages. Earnest Hemingway could be blamed for the plague of short sentences: I remember reading critics praising his “short, choppy sentences” written in the “manner of the newspapers”: does this make Hemingway the first literary, pop-art writer?

    These long sentences are an important feature of the King James Bible; the reader must learn to read the punctuation in order to comprehend complex relationships therein: this means most of those bible thumpers of the past were able-minded intellects; even if they confined their reading to the bible. Current bible editions cut these sentences up thereby breaking the continuity of concepts.

    The fun part of this is that as one becomes accustomed to long sentences, one begins to write longer, more complex sentences.

  40. T Says:


    In theory you may well be correct. In practice, however, school boards are usually made up of elected positions. The current problem is that one is facing the same low-information voter who re-elected Obama to elect conservative/traditionalist school board officials. Even with political pandering to the crowds to get elected, that is a steep hill for conservatives to climb.

    Note though, I’m not saying they shouldn’t try; I’m saying that as all the other solutions it s a long-term plan

  41. G Joubert Says:

    …but there’s a fundamental difference between Marxists and liberals. The Marxists’ first principle is oppressor vs oppressed. The liberals’ first principle is civilization vs barbarism.

    I’m not so certain about that, but I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt on it, mainly because it’s a moot point. Bottom line: socialism, for all its good intentions, has been proven over and over to be economically unsustainable. It’s a sound-good feel-good concept, sorta like unicorns.

  42. Barbara Says:

    What has occurred in America is a cultural sea change and what is needed is another cultural sea change.

    I have been involved in the fight since 1970, first “working within the system” (public ed) and then, after realizing my efforts were wasted, taking the path of rebellion. I became a homeschooler – before it was cool to be a homeschooler.

    What interested me the most about that experience was the response of the “educated” community to the homeschool phenomenon: as the studies came out showing the superiority of the homeschool paradigm, the pushback became more intense. Thoughtful people should really think about that.

    So here it is, 2013, and I have 10 grandchildren who are all homescooled. The HSLDA fights for parental rights. Patrick Henry College has been created – originally only homeschoolers might apply but this may have changed. Cities like Memphis, TN have huge homeschool umbrella organizations.

    My point is the cultural sea change has to begin with me wherever my sphere of influence may be – the ripple effect is not a left or right phenomenon, it is natural law.

    And since I drew from Shakespeare’s The Tempest at the beginning of my post, let me close with the latest example of extreme ignorance in our nation. There is a quote going around social media about the virtues of a true friend. It is attributed to Shakespeare. College educated people believe he wrote it and share it freely, yet anyone who had a modicum of literary knowledge would recognize immediately that it couldn’t possibly be the words of the great bard.

    This is where we are. We are a nation suffering from extreme ignorance and that is where the battle must be fought. Ye shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free…

  43. T Says:


    “. . . as the studies came out showing the superiority of the homeschool paradigm, the pushback became more intense.”

    Two responses: 1) the inertia of the status quo, and 2) the intent of the current scholastic power structure to relinquish its control only through their “cold, dead fingers” (to borrow a phrase).

    And I agree about the ripple effect. See my earlier response to Neo above @ 2/12 3:10.

  44. G Joubert Says:

    …the response of the “educated” community to the homeschool phenomenon: as the studies came out showing the superiority of the homeschool paradigm, the pushback became more intense. Thoughtful people should really think about that.

    To me at the core of the opposition to home schooling has always been those with vested interests– public teacher’s unions and career pubic school administrators. Couple them with Democrat politicos pandering for votes from the public employee sector, and voila!, organized and well-funded pushback.

    Liberals get all warm and fuzzy about public school teachers, imaging them as selfless underpaid saints, nevermind the 9-month work year and generous pay/benefits, and the diminishing quality of their work product. Hey, it’s for the children.

  45. T Says:

    G Joubert,

    I am no fan of teacher’s unions or the current state of education. Having said that, the constant complaint about teachers’ 9 mo work year is mostly unfounded. I know many teachers. Between the out-of-class monitoring of a school’s extracurricular activities (debate club, drama club, etc.), the fact that they oftentimes grade tests on their own time, and other out-of-class acitivites, IMO the 9 mo class session balances out.

    On the other hand, I completely agree with you regarding the current work product of most schools. I will go one step further and note that sabbaticals (time off for research) have absolutely no place in the K-12 world. K-12 teachers are teachers, not researchers plumbing the depths of a particular field of knowledge. K-12 sabbaticals are just paid vacations at taxpayer expense in a system that can ill afford them.

  46. G Joubert Says:


    Most of us do after hours work, except we do on a 12-month basis. I practiced law for 20 years, and 60+ hour work weeks were the norm. Now I teach at a small private college. Not nearly as onerous, even with reading student papers, writing and correcting exams, etc., most of which is also after hours.

    Public school teaching is a gravy train, pure and simple. And it’s a huge part of the machine that propels leftist Democrat politics. I cut them no slack whatsoever.

  47. T Says:

    G Joubert,

    You and I can agree to disagree on this. IMO the fact that a 60 hr work wk is the “norm” for any other given profession is, in my mind, a meaningless comparison. Because someone else works 60+ hrs per wk, teachers should also be expected to do so? You may have practiced law for 20+ years at 60+ hrs per week, but I’d hope that your compensation was substantially greater than a K-12 teacher for such travail.

    Your comparison to teaching in a private college and reading papers after hours is also IMO invalid. What does one teach at a college level, 4 courses per week, 5 courses? That’s 12 to 15 hours of weekly class time which leaves a lot of after-hours time for grading and other teaching related pursuits. By contrast K-12 teachers are in class, before students generally 5-6 hours per day (i.e., 25-30 hrs per wk).

    Let me repeat, I write this as someone who is quite unsupportive of the current K-12 system and who is a former university professor himself. There are many many reasons to criticize and even condemn the current output, teaching and administration of our K-12 system; IMO the 9 month work year is not one of them and it’s constant appearance dilutes other more pointed and substantive arguments.

  48. T Says:

    G Koubert,

    As for your observation “[public school teaching is] a huge part of the machine that propels leftist Democrat politics,” I absolutely agree.

  49. Ann Althouse Says:

    And by the way, we need to do more to support existing media. I hit “Da Tech Guy’s” tip jar, but this stuff isn’t free and to draw talented people into blogging we need to pony up. There’s no grant/Soros slush money coming.

  50. Ann Althouse Says:

    I’m still using the Althouse name. Because it is I! Ann of Althouse!

  51. Artfldgr Says:


    and that is where a big part of the problem is for me. i grew up on those things. I started reading at a high level at a very early age, and used to read the children’s books of the past, which tend to have a high reading level. i was voracious, and tested college level in grade school. so i read Joyce, and the greek and roman classics, pop classics, all of shakespeares works, horation hornblower, chaucer, Leatherstocking and mohicans, twain… by the time i was 13, i had read all funken wagner encyclopedias, two unabridged dictionaries, the large edition of the brittanica. cousins would give me their college texts which varied depending on which cousin. after 13, dad was working for philips, and so i would read all the patent published books of issues as they discarded them, manuals, textbooks, and really got into wider harder texts, and often older and mostly unknown. i read all science fiction i could, which spanned everything that was written, and i stopped when they started reprints in new covers as i would buy the same books again. then i would move to another category and just read everything in that section of the library… tolstoy and others…alexander dumas (who if i remember is black), proust, neitsche, marcuse, adorno, wittgenstein, faulkner, then got into histories…

    so my earliest learnings to write are from some of the greatest writers… but my problem is that i think so fast, that i can type fast enough to get it down, and because everything is connected to everything else, i cant find the boundaries to excise and compartmentalize. then there is the issue of including information that the other doesnt know, vs does know and you can make a reference too.. (and doing lots of science where empiricism of quoting, and all that comes into play… not to mention debating team).

    short sentences are fine, and compared to roman times, we have refined language symbol systems and they are much better.

    but i do get your point as to how a run on sentence with a timing and a meter can keep going and will never end and therefore becomes a fun challenge to create and to compose for any one to read when i can. 🙂

    the older texts did not use punctuation as much. the idea was to write in a way, so that when a person read, they knew where those things would go.

    just look at shakespeare, peoples minds were much more on the ball in listening to what was said, understanding it, and doing so well they could speak indirectly aobut a direct thing making it sound all pretty.

    today, that same thing makes people confused.

    it requires more thought to read, understand, and so on. and our society has be progresing bacwards… which is what PROmoting reGRESSIVE means… in this way, the winners can role back the advances of self governance to a political system in time that DOES allow them what oppresses them now.

    its not the minorities or women, or gays, etc.. that are being liberated, its the political class who has been shackled since magna carta, and so on..

    the larger problem is that there is no way to short sentence the knowlege they need to learn and know without blind trust.

    this is the whole point of it… once your language is stunted, then certain concepts and realities become farther from you. there is no way to really know this unless you have gone past this point yourself. everyone defaults to themselves as tops, and used to know their location over time… (but on many measures which all are different).

    the left gets to have that blind trust and can talk in sound bites because through media, and so on, they have been there with the person since they were a child. what they say resonates from sesame street, to mowtown, to hollyweird, to their newspapers, to even things like Nickelodeon… then here comes these old outsiders, talking long sentences of wa wa, wanting to tell stories to convince them that what has resonated all their lives is not right.

    ultimately, short sentences also put a gate keeper in front of them, that they are too lazy to overcome, and too boring to pass… so they wont read the past and wont know it. its not exciting hollyweird stuff most of the time, its reams of dry things that with the names come across like reading the hobbit for the first time.

    those great old texts are just too much trouble…

    but dont worry…
    ultimately the whole thing is self correcting
    though how so, is probably not going to be to their liking… (but with what such stunting does, what other choice can they make? getting huffy at others just means they wont change the outcome, and wont become a resource that then influences others who may ask questions they cant address, because you cant learn principals and such in sound bites)

  52. Eric Says:

    G Joubert,

    The Tea Party can reform the Right, but not the Left. It’s not moot if you want to change the Left into a form the Right can work with that has the best interests of the nation at heart. Real progressive liberals can do that.

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Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.

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