The departure of Glenn Beck is yet another indication of the power of the left to expunge the media against people and ideas they don’t like. Or at least, that’s the claim. The George Soros-funded Media Matters was all over MSNBC crowing about their success in getting rid of a high-profile critic of their benefactor. A NYTimes account states,
Almost immediately after Mr. Beck’s announcement, the progressive group Media Matters for America, which combats Fox on a daily basis, said it was “no surprise” that he was leaving, given that many advertisers had shunned Mr. Beck’s show ever since he labeled President Obama a racist in the summer of 2009. (Fox has said in the past that the advertisers simply moved over to other programs on the channel.)
Color of Change, the group that spearheaded an advertiser boycott of Mr. Beck, asserted that the program lost “over 300 advertisers.” James Rucker, the executive director of the group, said in a statement, “Fox News Channel clearly understands that Beck’s increasingly erratic behavior is a liability to their ratings and their bottom line, and we are glad to see them take this action.”
The power of Color of Change and the other organizers to sway advertisers is not absolute. An attempt by the same groups to get advertisers to abandon FOX altogether failed.
Still, it’s a very important power–the same power on display in the AmRen cancellations . Although the Supreme Court is holding the line on First Amendment issues by a slim 5-4 majority, the power to control advertisers in a capitalist economy is real weapon because even in the Internet age, some media matters a whole lot more than others. Being able to influence the content at FOX is an important accomplishment for the left.
There is a long history of influencing media messages by influencing advertisers. It’s interesting that some of the allegations about Jewish power in America made by Henry Ford’s The International Jew (TIJ) implicate this strategy, not only in controlling messages about Jews, but as an aspect of developing a Jewish ethnic monopoly in the theater business. During the period covered by TIJ, the power to influence advertising messages derived entirely from actual Jewish ownership of advertisers, especially department store advertising in big-city newspapers. Advertising by department stores–a niche was dominated by Jews–was a major source of revenue for newspapers.
TIJ describes the rise during the 1890s of the Jewish-dominated Theatrical Trust which eclipsed the previous non-Jewish theatrical producers and agents. TIJ states that the Theatrical Trust blacklisted critics who “opposed its methods or pointed out the inferior, coarse and degrading character of the Trust productions.” TIJ claims that critics were fired by newspapers threatened by the Trust with loss of advertising revenue (1/08/1921). …
Although Jews had make strides in ownership of the press during this period, TIJ states that ownership of the press is not critical because Jews are able to exert pressure by withholding advertising. A newspaper that reprinted an excerpt of an article on Jews from the Dearborn Independentlost a number of Jewish advertising accounts the next day (9/11/1920).
TIJ also presents an interesting account of resistance to Jewish pressure by James Gordon Bennett, a non-Jew who owned the New York Herald, the most prestigious newspaper in the city until he died in 1918. According to TIJ, the Jewish owners of department stores threatened the city’s newspapers with loss of advertising if they failed to back a Jewish candidate for mayor. Bennett published the threatening letter and managed to survive the loss of Jewish advertising. Despite Bennett’s victory, Jewish power in journalism increased in New York. The Herald died with Bennett, and “Adolph S. Ochs, a Philadelphia Jew, acquired the [New York] Times. He soon made it into a great newspaper, but one whose bias is to serve the Jews” (2/05/1921). …
The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) also receives some attention from TIJ. The ADL is portrayed as organizing boycotts to achieve its ends, often through its ability to control advertising in newspapers placed by Jewish department store owners. The ADL pressures newspapers to remove negative references to people identified as Jews. This pressure has resulted in Jews with negative press being referred to as Russians or as Englishmen, but never as Jews (3/19/1921; 7/03/1920). TIJ also points to a double standard in this regard: “A Jewish paper may shriek to the skies that Professor So-and-So, or Judge So-and-So, or Senator So-and-So is a Jew; but the secular newspaper that should do that would be visited by an indignant committee bearing threats” (9/11/1920). (See here.)