Cher’s phenomenal article on the media and e’cat’s excellent Rashomon feature have left me thinking that there are some steps we might take to push back against the demoralizing of the progressive community. And I think we can start with the site that is currently recognized as the lead progressive voice on the internet — the Huffington Post. Loathe as I am to devote any more PPOV space to that website, I am motivated by a particular article to do something to help my community get its groove back. We have elections coming up. We can’t afford any setbacks.
So I’m suggesting a letter-writing campaign — letters to truly progressive sites and think tanks — describing and supporting with evidence the damage that HP is doing to the progressive community. There is nothing wrong with disagreement among progressives, but we can disagree and still remain a force to be reckoned with. If we are fractured, we cannot keep pushing together for change.
I’m asking fellow Planet members to help draft such a letter, as well as a distribution list. I feel this is necessary because HP is becoming the go-to source for progressive commentary in the mainstream — on CNN, in the NYTimes and Washington Post. It does not deserve that reputation.
We can’t change the practices of the site, but perhaps we can get a conversation going among other progressive commentators about whether the site serves the progressive cause.
After all, sites like Raw Story, Truthout, BuzzFlash, AlterNet, and originally, The Huffington Post, were founded as a push back against the corporate media — to inform and unite the progressive community. So that we could push for progressive causes. When one of those organizations begins to corrupt that mission, I think we have a responsibility to raise a warning flag.
I realize this is not the week for such a project. We are celebrating the return of light, the Solstice, Christmas, Hanukkah, Shabe-Yalda, Kwanza — celebrations of life and joy. But I wanted to post when I thought of it. And return to the idea in the New Year when we can take our time and compose a really good letter. With the strong writers and thinkers we have here, we should be able to produce something powerful.
What does everyone think?