Tuesday, December 07, 2004

The Very American Blogosphere

Bill Bennett at Real Clear Politics writes about the election and the downturn of the MSM being fueled by the rise of the blogosphere. Here's my favorite graph:
In many ways—especially from the views of Blackrock, 30 Rock, and Times Square —President George W. Bush should not have been re-elected: the economy was in less than stellar shape; images of terrorism and death from Iraq flooded the news coverage; civilians were being kidnapped and beheaded; President Bush did not acquit himself well in the presidential debates; and Osama bin Laden gave us a long-awaited (and, in some cases, long-unexpected) proof-of-life days before the election. And, yet, instead of George W. Bush packing up his office this December and January, Dan Rather announced that he will be packing up his, Tom Brokaw has delivered his last broadcast, and the New York Times is, well, one wonders….

And then there's this:
This new media makes news, national priorities, and fact-checking a much more democratic thing, giving all consumers of news—all citizens—a new birthright to their democracy and to their citizenship. It empowers all of us with the ability to find the truth of a story or a claim, to make judgments rather than have judgments made for us. I do not know if the mainstream media will adapt to their new competition but it is my hope that they at least understand who their new competition is. It is not a new multinational corporation, a stronger watt antenna, or a new satellite. It is the conglomerate of the American people, a busy and curious people, who have now been emboldened to take back the power of the news, opinions, and facts they choose to read, hear, and prioritize. It is a conglomerate that is more diverse, more experienced, and smarter than the Big Three or the Old Gray Lady. It is growing and getting better all the time because more citizens are turning to it, taking responsibility for it, and challenging themselves and others with it. It is a very bottom up process, a very democratic process. This new media gives us all not only more and better information but more and better democracy. In the end, it is a very American thing.

Go soak it all in. And I must add that I am very proud to be a member of this very "American" thing.