ZeroHedge published a very important post by Martin Armstrong, in which he argues that the mainstream media is nearing its demise.
Armstrong begins by showing that the public’s trust in the media has fallen from 72% in 1976 to 32% today. He provides the following chart from Gallup to support his claim.
This chart provides a number of fascinating insights. Among them include:
- The steady deterioration of public trust in the media over time,
- A majority of Democrats, however slim, continue to trust the media,
- Less than a third of independents now trust the media, and
- Trust in the media among Republicans plunged from 32% in 2015 to 14% today.
The last data point should not be surprising in the slightest. During this campaign, the media clearly let its mask of objectivity slip to help Hillary Clinton become president. Now that the liberal media has completed its meltdown after the election, what is its most likely action plan once Trump begins its administration?
We should expect that the media will viciously attack Donald Trump in a futile effort to cling to some level of importance and to desperately try to demonstrate that they were not wrong with 99% of the media endorsing Hillary. But the media willingly conspired to make Hillary president. They will now try to vindicate themselves by trashing Trump at every possible chance. They will now fuel the civil divide and help lay the foundation for the collapse of the United States itself by turning left against right. Even the New York Post wrote that what they were witnessing was the end of journalism. They will do everything to try to change Congress in 2018. It appears that will be their last stand. The younger generation does not buy newspapers and magazines. Their end is near.
When three television networks, two cable news networks (excluding Fox), the major social media sites, and practically every major newspaper relies on 1/6th of the American public for their support, it is not hard to imagine that the next few years will be an extremely challenging time for the media.
What is happening to the mainstream media reminds me of how union strikes contributed to the downfall of Eastern Airlines.
By the time the machinists began their strike in March 1989, and pilots and flight attendants walked out in sympathy, Eastern Airlines was in poor financial shape. The airline had been losing money since the seventies, especially after the deregulation of the airline industry in 1978. The company had been weighed down by an enormous debt load it incurred before deregulation to modernize its planes. In 1988, it posted a record loss of $335.4 million.
While Frank Lorenzo, Eastern’s CEO after the company was purchased by Texas Air in 1986, is often portrayed as a bully and union-buster, his actions were clearly designed to keep the airline alive. Among the moves he made was he sought wage concessions from workers. For example, Eastern sought $150 million in wage savings from the Machinists union, which was seeking pay increases totaling $50 million. Ramp serviceman Earl Christian supported the strike because he thought Eastern’s demand for wage concessions were unreasonable:
”I see it as something I have earned over the years,” said Christian, who earns about $33,000 annually. ”I’m entitled to it, and I want to keep it.”
When the strikes began, 30,000 of Eastern’s employees refused to work. As a result, the company was forced to file for bankruptcy, operate with only 1,500 non-union and management employees, and fly 10% of its usual flights.
The airline stopped flying on January 19, 1991.
Parallels can be seen in how unions treated Eastern Airlines and how the media may treat the Trump Administration. The media will most likely use its declining influence to attack Donald Trump at every turn. This would merely reinforce the public’s negative perceptions about the media. Unless it changes its ways, the media will, ultimately, become irrelevant.