Thursday, July 28, 2011

Murdoch Is Daddy Warbucks to the Neocons

While reading his speech, I was thinking how nice it would be if Murdoch withdrew his funding from the neocon empire. This may be the only point about which President Obama and I would agree. What Murdoch’s fortunes have done is allow a hegemonic persuasion, neoconservatism, give or take a few changeable additives, to gain undue influence on a drifting American Right, including the Republican Party. In the 1980s the conservative movement, whatever its deficiencies, exhibited a wide range of views on social and historical questions. Many of the views that are now identified with an alternative or disaligned Right were then expressed in National Review and in other widely read and once-interesting publications that have since come under neoconservative control. The major funder of neoconservative publications in the 1980s was the World Unification Church, and the recipients of funding from the Reverend Moon tried to hide their dependence on this leader of a Korean sect, by ridiculing their beneficiary. Then Rupert entered the scene and showered the neoconservatives with billions of dollars. This allowed them to get off the Moonie dole and into a powerful media position.

I’m not suggesting we’d all be on a level playing field if only Murdoch stopped funding the usual suspects. They would still be getting funds from multiple sources, including Asian governments fighting protectionism, global democratic troublemakers, and Jewish Democrats who support the neoconservatives on Israel. What would change would be the disparity between what neocons get and what the marginalized Right is surviving on. Moreover, it would no longer be necessary for libertarians or conservative Christians to depend on neocon generosity to get TV time or be treated sympathetically in the neoconservative-dominated press. More competition would be possible if the trust that Murdoch has subsidized fell apart.

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