In Defense of Democracy

As we look back at the best and worst of 2014, a glaring example of the latter leaps to mind: the mainstream media’s refusal to seriously cover the climate crisis. Between NPR’s de facto abandonment of climate coverage and the cable and broadcast media’s neglect of the People’s Climate March and the UN Climate Change Conference in Lima, it seems that the Fourth Estate has deep-sixed any serious coverage of this issue—and other issues deemed esoteric by the elites.

Media entities that focus on the interests and concerns of those in the 99 percent have suffered in recent times. Nearly two years later, the demise of the Boston Phoenix is still painful to those of us who appreciated the publication’s focus on those victimized by income inequality, police brutality, industrial pollution and religious hypocrisy. (The pain only intensified when the Phoenix‘s sister publication, the Providence Phoenix, ceased operations in October 2014.)

The non-powerful don’t have many outlets left to ensure that their perspective is included in the national political conversation. We at the Washington Monthly want to remain one of those outlets; it is the core of our mission. However, we will not be able to accomplish that mission without your assistance.

Think about it: aren’t there way too many “snob media” entities today? Between Rupert Murdoch’s media empire, the Foster Freiss-backed Daily Caller and the outlets for Phil Anschutz’s far-right views, there aren’t too many places where a non-rich man or woman can have his or her views and values expressed.

Supporting the interests of the public over the powerful is by definition not easy, but in the age of an ever-more-aggressive right-wing media onslaught, doing so is far more difficult than previously anticipated. This is why your help is crucial.

When he ran for governor of Massachusetts in 2006, Deval Patrick often spoke of his grandmother’s favorite saying: “Hope for the best and work for it.” We hope for the best for this country and planet, and we’re certainly willing to work for it…but that work won’t be finished without your necessary support.

Please make a tax-deductible contribution today, so that we can ensure that the work for a more just and stable country and world is completed successfully. The far right hopes that this goal won’t be accomplished, but to quote another Patrick line, “Together, we can.”

D.R. Tucker

D. R. Tucker is a Massachusetts-based journalist who has served as the weekend contributor for the Washington Monthly since May 2014. He has also written for the Huffington Post, the Washington Spectator, the Metrowest Daily News, investigative journalist Brad Friedman's Brad Blog and environmental journalist Peter Sinclair's Climate Crocks.