The Press—A Must Have?

Howard Kurtz, a self-identifying media critic wonders whether politicians “ignoring”—read: bypassing—the media might, by doing so, do themselves more political harm than good. The subheadline of his Fox News op-ed is this:

Ignoring the media may feel good, but it deprives a politician like DeSantis of a chance to test his mettle on the big stage

Never mind that it’s pointless for a Conservative or a Republican politician to go through the national press, as Kurtz convicts his guild with his own examples:

DeSantis once held a news conference to bash 60 Minutes for what I thought was a flawed and unfair piece about the governor and Covid.

Because criticizing a broadcast network program over its erroneous reporting must be bashing; it cannot be critiquing.

And this:

What’s more, when a CBS reporter confronted him (he had refused to do an interview), DeSantis lectured her—and the program refused to use most of his sound bite.

Because, as Kurtz knows full well but declined to write, DeSantis’ response was no mere sound bite; it was a full and complete response. CBS showed its national-level dishonesty with its decision to spike the critical parts of DeSantis’ answer.

And this, too, from Kurtz:

The [New York] Times piece strongly suggests he has to reach people who don’t watch Fox [News], given that elections are won by persuading suburban and independent voters. And if he’s the nominee, DeSantis will be called chicken, and worse, for ducking the fourth estate.

It’s only Kurtz’ guild colleagues, comprising that so-precious “fourth estate,” who call politicians names when those politicians speak directly to voters, bypassing the guild. No, politicians must go through Kurtz’ precious press filter. Politicians must have no other means of speaking to their constituents or to a more national audience.

Politicians must not use social media to talk directly to us average Americans without journalistic distortions and excerpting without context. Neither TRUTH Social nor a reformed Twitter can be allowed. Townhall confabs are not to be used without Kurtz’ filtering press to cover them and tell us what we’re seeing with our own lying eyes. There are to be no Trump-like mass gatherings without that filtering press. There are no going into the neighborhoods, the diners, the neighborhood rec centers unless the guild is present to screen what we see and hear.

No, there is only Kurtz’ so-awesome journalism guild. There is only press self-importance.

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