Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Fox-stole journalism
Here's why it's a good thing that Rupert Murdoch is buying the Wall Street Journal: The Journal is and always has been the paper of record for, by and about America's corporate ruling class. If you read the Journal for any reason other than to get a leg up on capitalism's latest schemes, you are a tool. Until now, the Journal cloaked its plutocratic perspective in a mink stole of credible journalism. Murdoch's media properties aren't so clever. Once the Journal assumes the cartoon subtlety of Fox News, the stole will be off and any country-club capitalist with a speck of ethics will take it for what it's worth. Consider that until now, a bright, young Biff coming out of the business academy in search of a promising career as a robber baron might pick up the Journal and read a story praising, say, KFC or Humana for their third-quarter earnings or their innovative new business tactics, while completely overlooking or burying the fact that the increased earnings came at the expense of mom-and-pop chicken joints in Indonesia, in turn tossing fuel on the fire of terrorism, or at the expense of poor people tossed out on the sidewalks like that poor, braided and befuddled Los Angeles homeless woman in Sicko. Reading old-mink-stole Journal, Biff bites into a croissant and nods approvingly at the third quarter earnings and schedules a racquetball court for 6:30. Reading the new Fox-stole Journal, Biff still bites the croissant and reserves the court – and eventually goes on to a storied career in corporate crime - but feels a tiny, nagging pinprick of guilt knowing that his life is a sham. Guilt that can only be assuaged with a case of 1998 Cheval Blanc and a gram of blow, which eventually explode his heart and melt his liver, the end. So it's all good. Plus, I can't wait to see Brit Hume in one of those pointy-dot head drawings.

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