Friday, 11 November 2016

The End of the Traditional Media ?

                                            Humans are 90% irrational - Scott Adams

It's been an extraordinary year in politics as event after event proved the "experts" and the media wrong. The above article appeared in an Irish newspaper back in August. The article below about climate change appeared in the same newspaper a week later. Both pieces suffer from a distinct lack of critical analysis and instead focus mostly on emotion and even hysteria. This approach does sell newspapers as Scott Adams says humans are mostly irrational. Once the irrational idea that Trump could not win the election took hold, this then evolved into a mass hysteria where even the bookmakers became hoodwinked. Not alone did they lose big on the Trump victory, they paid out on a Trump defeat before the actual result came in ! Rational and clear analysis becomes almost impossible in such an environment and even intelligent people succumb.

In such environments (mostly created by the media), the media will seek to reinforce how we feel about the issue by saying "Relax" or in the case of the climate "Worry". At this stage, we have moved from being 90% irrational to 100% irrational. All doubt has been removed. Only the sudden shock of reality can make us see sense.

Back in 1968, an English man had the crazy idea about transferring news and information across wires and into TV screens and even on to computers. It turned out to be very prescient.   


The internet means you can get different opinions and analysis and make up your own mind. If you prefer the emotive stuff, you can still find that online. If you prefer critical analysis and debate then you can find that too which before was not as accessible. Articles can be instantly fact-checked and updated to give the most accurate assessment at that time.  

President Elect Trump had a significant online presence, much bigger than that of his opponent. Turns out that was not something to "Relax" about. The old print media is now looking increasingly irrelevant.  We may be seeing it going extinct in the near future. Something they will certainly be "worried" about.


  1. Traditional Kings and Queens ruled by consent, terror or a combination of both. They all had their "face book page", "the printed word", except there was no independent comment allowed. Various types of democracies evolved leading to universal suffrage which was finally last achieved in Northern Ireland in 1971. Central to democratic freedom is the rule of law, and written or unwritten constitutions containing bills of rights are central to the basic law.
    They all contain a provision guaranteeing the right of free personal expression, peaceful assembly and a free press. A free press is not a luxury of democratic freedom, its is an essential delegation of the investigative and analytical function of society to an industry charged with discovering and reporting the actions of government and the great and the good. This function can be done by any individual, but they don't have time to investigate or the means to get their findings published.

    In recent years, the free world has been hit by an undemocratic, liberal, socialist (sometimes communist) green upopic movement. Some is progressive and harmless but some is based on deluded, unscientific wishful thinking bordering on extreme hysteria about non existing problems and deluded remedies to solve these.

    It was for the media to identify, investigate and report on this movement and if it had done so, it might have curtailed the excesses of this unwelcome movement. When it failed to do so, it effectively forced people like me to do their job for them. Taking on someone else's job is hard work for little pay, but when the people realize the media neglected their duty, they will turn to other media outlets. A gulf develops between the mass sentiment and mass media and as the masses have votes, there can be only two categories of winners. 1) Social media and 2) Farage, Trump and LePenn. Television set are being dumped out and thousands of newspapers remain unsold. As one old fella in Kingscourt said to me recently, "I quit buying the Sunday Independent" "Its too political".

  2. Think of it like this. Paddy power bookmakers paid out over one million Euros on a Clinton win two weeks before election day. They admit media commentary helps assess betting odds. She lost. Pat Swords (A Dublin engineer) dragged Ireland and the UK through the Compliance Committee of the UNECE and won there. Yet he was never allowed on any Irish media outlet, because editors don't approve. I took a recent Judicial review case in the Irish High Court on a wind farm planning issue. It make the papers but when I finally won it got no mention in the papers. In fact no local paper like the Anglo Celt would publish it. This builds up frustration among consumers and voters who include a touch of revenge in their verdict at the news stalls or polling booth.

    I believe neither Irish or British mainstream Broadcast or Print media is capable of change. They have to be let wither away. About 15 years ago, there was an upsurge in new local newspapers in Ireland at County level, it all fizzled out, perhaps it was just a little to soon on the scene. We now have (if reports are correct|), the appointment as the Trump government's chief strategist, Steven Bannon who ran the on line newspaper Breithbart News, It is described on Wikipedia as "committed to the destruction of the old media guard". I hope a new revolution is the media does not swing to the left or right, but sticks to its proper purpose, to investigate, criticize, praise and report. Until that happens, a pillar of our freedom is missing. The vitriolic bile pumped out by Irish National Broadcaster RTE on hearing of Trump's victory is evidence of a sheltered media, paid for by force through the licence fee will be harder to break.

  3. The left/green media alliance have been whinging for years about America's cold war with Russia. Now this same left/Green media alliance are whinging about Donald Trump opening dialogue with Russia. This same left/green media have been warning us that Arab oil producers may cut off our vital oil supplies, According to to-days Financial Times Saudi Arabia has warned the USA not to cut off its oil supplies. Google it or Lucky we did noit listen to them