Junior Ganymede
We endeavor to give satisfaction

H.L. Mencken on the modern American press

September 08th, 2012 by Vader

I am not really a fan of H.L. Mencken, but this seems spot on.  

I believed then, as I believe now, that it is the prime function of a really first-rate newspaper to serve as a sort of permanent opposition in politics, and I tried to show that the Sun, because of its geographical situation, had a superb opportunity to discharge that function effectively. Baltimore was but forty miles from Washington — and the Washington papers were all third-rate, and seemed doomed to remain so forever, for the overwhelming majority of their readers were petty Federal jobholders, which is to say, half-wits. In consequence of their badness all Washington officials in the higher brackets had to read out-of-town papers, and not a few of them, including Wilson, read the Sun, for that was in the days before airships, and the Sun could get to Washington with news nearly five hours earlier than the news in the New York morning papers…The rudiments of the New Deal were already visible in those days, and I did not neglect to sneer at the “utopian ideas, economical, political, and ethical” that were going about…

Ed Driscoll spells out the current applicability well enough that I need not elaborate.

Comments (3)
Filed under: Deseret Review,There are monkey-boys in the facility | Tags: , ,
September 08th, 2012 21:52:35
3 comments

Bookslinger
September 9, 2012

The rudiments of the New Deal were already visible in those days, and I did not neglect to sneer at the “utopian ideas, economical, political, and ethical” that were going about…

That somewhat backs up comments I’ve made about how modern liberalism/progressivism has it’s roots in the New Deal.

[…] Mencken once said that “It is the prime function of a really first-rate newspaper to serve as a sort of permanent […]

[…] if only we could go back to a media that, as Mencken did, believes that “the prime function of a really first-rate newspaper to serve as a sort of […]

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