Making Sense by Michael Reagan
Bill Maher called Chris Kyle of “American Sniper” a “psychopath patriot.”
Michael Moore called military snipers “cowards” who shoot people in the back.
Howard Dean said “American Sniper” appeals mostly to angry Tea Party types.
Why do we conservatives give two cents about what these lefties and liberals say about “American Sniper” — or anything else?
Nothing they ever say is surprising. Nothing they say ever adds to the debate, has any effect on anything or helps us find a solution to a serious problem.
The predictable — and wrong — things these liberals and others on the left said about “American Sniper” glorifying killing or whitewashing the Iraq war couldn’t stop or hurt that great movie.
Its record $250 million box-office take in just two weeks says it all.
Spending time or space reacting to anything Moore tweets or Maher says on his barely watched HBO show is a waste of time for conservatives and their media.
Dean’s comment (which he later apologized for) was seen and heard by far more people on conservative media outlets than on Maher’s show.
Ditto for Moore’s garbled tweets, which otherwise would have been seen only by his mindless followers.
So why does the conservative media take the bait, time and time again, and give the inane comments of liberal cranks so much attention and publicity?
Simple. It’s great for their bottom lines.
Unfortunately, attacking your enemies — even when you can predict what they’ll say before they say it — is what the American TV viewing audience wants.
I wish I could change it, but the reality is that it’s all about getting higher ratings.
Whether it’s on MSNBC, CNN or Fox News, the media boxing ring has been set up for everyone to be always fighting somebody else. It’s all about clashing opinions and playing to the opposite corners.
You watch MSNBC to be mad at the right and Fox to be mad at the left and no one watches CNN.
These staged media fights are rarely worth watching and they don’t bring any benefit to the country, the conservative cause or the political process.
It’s rarely a fair fight. Alan Colmes and Bob Beckel are the Washington Generals of Fox News.
And what good does it do for more than 2 million people to watch four conservatives beat up Beckel every night on “The Five”?
Beckel, not to mention Fox News, is laughing all the way to the bank.
But the show is a total waste of time for everyone else. You might as well watch an hour of professional wrestling.
I’m looking for straight news, news I can use, not reports on dumb things said by my enemies. But straight news is hard to find on TV these days.
Other people have noticed the news shortage. Last year during D-Day celebrations in Normandy I was talking to some high-ranking members of the 82nd Airborne.
“What news do you guys watch?” I asked.
“Al Jazeera America.”
“Al Jazeera. Because we’re looking for straight news, not opinion. We’ll form our own opinion.”
Al Jazeera America being touted for its un-spun newscasts by U.S. military leaders is a shocking and depressing thought.
But straight news won’t sell to the TV masses in America, where the news media have turned us into a National Inquirer country.
We’re not getting the news we need or can use from network and cable TV. We get bad news, gotcha news, sensational news or shock-video of car wrecks.
The conservative media only make things worse when they constantly publicize the stupid things liberals say.
It may be good for ratings. But at some point you have to say to the conservative media moguls, “Guys, there are a lot of important things going on in the world and what Michael Moore and Bill Maher think are not two of them.”
Copyright ©2015 Michael Reagan. Michael Reagan is the son of President Ronald Reagan, a political consultant, and the author of “The New Reagan Revolution” (St. Martin’s Press). He is the founder of the email service reagan.com and president of The Reagan Legacy Foundation. Visit his websites at www.reagan.com and www.michaelereagan.com. Send comments to Reagan@caglecartoons.com. Follow @reaganworld on Twitter.
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