In the 1880s, Jay Gould — Monopolist, infamous Wall Street Stock manipulator, and solid Republican (with the caveat that he wasn’t a mere Republican voter, but, that he bought-and-paid for Republican legislators, placed them into office via his money, to control government legislation for his personal benefit) — also owned major New York City newspapers, for the purpose of controlling/creating/suppressing news, as he saw fit, again, to his personal benefit.
Today, in addition to major corporations owning/controlling television networks and their news organizations (such as General Electric until recently owning NBC), plus major advertisers also sometimes affecting the news (such as, years ago, tobacco company influence killing stories about tobacco on CBS), we have a major cable “news” network — Fox “News” – owned by Republican Party operatives/ideologues, and run as a 24-hour propaganda channel, presenting, inventing, and suppressing news, for the explicit purpose of promoting the Republican Party. Up until the 1980′s, the Federal Communications Commission had a rule known as “The Fairness Doctrine”, which required that all television news be fair and balanced. The other television networks (minus MSNBC, now) still follow those rules, even though they no longer exist. The “Fairness Doctrine” was eliminated by President Ronald Reagan, as step one for the explicit plan to create Fox News as a Republican Propaganda channel. Step Two, was for Reagan and Republicans to pass special legislation to fast track British-born conservative ideologue & activist Rupert Murdoch, to become a U.S. Citizen, as only U.S. Citizens are permitted to own controlling shares in major television networks. They did both, as Murdoch was planning to build/finance, Fox News.
Fox “News”, with its invention & manipulation of “facts” — such as denial of global warming, and substituting footage of large non-Tea Party crowds to run as people attending Tea Party rallies (when the real rallies didn’t have enough attendees) — their promotion of fringe right-wing extremist John Birch Society & Libertarian Party ideas via the rantings of Glenn Beck, their having numerous Republican Party former office holders and future-candidates on their payroll as “commentators” (Sarah Palin, Rick Santorum, etc) – have all lead to the destruction of the press as the “fourth rail” of American Democracy. To put it bluntly, in my opinion, Fox News is destructive to our nation and our future. It is yet another turn of the clock, returning us to the political abuses of the 19th century, such as those attacked by the free press cartoonists of that time.
Click on any picture, to open an enlarged version.
Below right – JayGouldAGrams (Gould owned/controlled the telegraph system) — a parody article on the altruic nature of Gould’s ownership of major news outlets, appearing in the same October 4th, 1882 issue of Puck.
The below left Opper cartoon — Convenient Garments for Monopolists (the “garments” being ) newspapers they own — is both from the December 7th, 1881 issue of Puck magazine, and, from an earlier SuperITCH posting by contributor David Donohue, titled Jay Gould, the King of the Robber Barons, Part 2, showing this plus other related cartoons, and going into greater detail on Gould’s ownership & manipulation of the press. Click on the picture, to be taken to David’s article.
To find more past postings involving corporate abuses, click here.
And, here, to find prior Election Cartoons postings.
financial reform NYPuck ElectionCartoons NYTribuneFoxNews