Most of what passes for “news” today is little more than warmed over propaganda designed to serve the ruling elite. The foolishly described “mainstream” media (there is nothing “mainstream” about them) are shills for the far-left, while some seemingly “conservative” outlets pander to whichever moderate Republican officeholder tickles their ear.
Citizens deserve better.
Here is how I define news: the facts of the day told in their truthful context allowing citizens to make informed decisions. Every single citizen is, or can be, a journalist. Journalism is the purposeful activity of gathering relevant information and presenting it in a straightforward manner without deceit, manipulation, or unnecessary jargon.
Our Founding Fathers enshrined the God-given right of the people to speak and publish freely on political matters because they had experienced firsthand a government that did not. They understood citizens must be able to expose government malfeasance, criticize public policy, and publicly identify corruption.
This was of such preeminent importance that the adoption of the U.S. Constitution was predicated on it being enumerated in the Bill of Rights.
Yet even our Founding Fathers were not immune to using government as a means to censor and silence criticism. One of the earliest actions of Congress was the adoption of the so-called Sedition Act of 1798, at the behest of President John Adams. It allowed the government to deport, fine, or imprison anyone who published “false, scandalous, or malicious writing” – giving huge power to the executive branch.
James Madison, the author of the Constitution, joined the general public in an uproar. Virginia and Kentucky threatened to leave the union over the matter. The election of 1800 saw Adams booted from office and replaced with Thomas Jefferson, under whom the law died.
The threat we face today is less from direct government oppression, as it is corporate cronies seeking favor from government actors. We saw that in the Hunter Biden laptop scandal of the 2020, where news stories were squashed by a Democrat-leaning media outlets and censored on Democrat-run social media publishing platforms. There was no law… just likeminded collusion.
Whether the laptop story would have swayed the election will never be known, but the fact it was effectively hidden from voters denied them the chance to decide for themselves.
Real news should be agnostic to how the “narrative” will benefit the politically powerful and connected. Stories should not be withheld because they are inconvenient to the powerbrokers. In fact, news that is inconvenient to the powerbrokers and comes to the detriment of those in public office must definitionally be told.
Analogies between business and government are overrated, and usually wrongheaded. But, with your indulgence, let me compare the citizens of the United States – and of the several states – to corporate board trustees. The only way to be a good corporate trustee is to be fully informed and have unfettered access to the business of the business.
As citizens, our first loyalty must be to each other and not the political personalities of the day. We owe each other our honest view of public policy and political actors.
Politicians and their sycophants want the people stuffed with a steady diet of intellectual junk food, but effective citizenship demands a steady diet of real news.
At Texas Scorecard, our pledge is to deliver real news to real Texans. We want citizens to have the knowledge they need to effectively dominate culture and government. And, quite frankly, we don’t care how inconvenient it is to anyone.