WASHINGTON, April 17, 2014 – Media Matters for America, usually referred to as simply “Media Matters,” is an organization out of Washington D.C. that describes itself as being “dedicated to comprehensively monitoring, analyzing, and correcting conservative misinformation in the U.S. media.”
Media Matters is in reality a hyper-partisan ally of the Democratic Party. It acts as a feeder of dubious talking points, faux research and empty sound bites daily to politicians and party spokespeople. Besides that, it is a no man’s land on the internet landscape.
Even liberals find it a waste of time, perhaps excepting those who live or die based on the shifting fortunes of their team.
If you look at website rankings, you find that within what would be considered the equivalent of a “Fortune 500” list, there is very little that is exclusively politically oriented. Most top sites are corporate websites that consumers have to visit in order to communicate with businesses; what remains is principally sports, porn and some news.
To put into perspective how irrelevant Media Matters is, consider their ranking on the Gold standard of website metrics – Alexa. Media Matters’ worldwide ranking is 21,635; their U.S. ranking is 5,696. By contrast, Fox News, Media Matters’ main target of criticism, is No.39. The Wall Street Journal, a paid subscription news and information site, is No.84. The Drudge Report is 94; Slate, 201; InfoWars, 307; Politico, 404; and the Daily Caller, 488.
It appears that left of center web surfers find Huffington Post, No.28, their cup of tea, and HuffPo is far from exclusively political.
This is not to say that Media Matters is irrelevant. Neither commercial viability and profits, nor wide exposure are seemingly the purpose of the site. Media Matters typically reports yearly losses over a million dollars. Instead, it’s a place where progressives who write blogs and Democratic Party trolls who haunt comment sections beneath news stories, go to get a partisan happy meal to share with everyone else in the leftist basement.
For that reason, the site must be propped up financially by benefactors such as MoveOn.org, the New Democratic Network, Democracy Alliance, the Ford Foundation, the Center For American Progress, the Tides Foundation and George Soros. The bulk of Media Matters operating income is derived from foundation grants. Media Matters for America has received 167 traceable foundation grants totaling over $30 million. That’s not terribly grass roots; instead, Media Matters is a recipient of wealthy Democrats’ largesse. So much for the myth of the party of the little guy and the working class.
You can’t deny that they are dedicated, persistent and passionate. But combined with those qualities is hypocrisy, delusion and a total lack of objectivity. As an example of the delusion, consider their main purpose of existence was to function as a thorn in the side of Fox News. One of their most cherished campaigns was the “War On Fox News.”
They’ve declared victory:
“When we started the film … liberals and progressives and Democrats were saying, ‘Oh, [Fox is] not really so bad. Because it’s really just a couple of commentators,'” said (Robert) Greenwald. “So we’ve come a long, positive way in terms of people realizing that they are a channel dedicated to one point of view. And obviously Media Matters has played a crucial role in our passing the baton and their taking it up and sticking on it. And I think it’s good timing to move on to other issues.”
Did they win? Media Matters spent ten years trying to pound Fox News into submission. If they had done a bang up job in discrediting Fox News, exposing their bias and instilling buyer’s remorse in its viewers, Fox News would have taken a tumble in the ratings. Fox routinely outperforms every other cable news network, and usually the next two combined. If this is what Media Matters considers a victory, they might want to find new recruits for their army.
Throughout the period of Media Matters’ War On Fox News, Fox News has grown and sustained its audience. On April 16, Fox News dominated CNN and MSNBC combined in all age categories, in primetime and throughout the broadcast day. Fox News in primetime had 2,063,000 viewers, CNN, 485,000 and MSNBC, 756,000. It’s typical that you can combine the viewership of MSNBC and CNN and throw in one of the other of the top 6 and still not have the viewers Fox News generates.
Media Matters’ war on Fox News was as successful as the government’s wars on drugs and on poverty. Do David Brock and the rest of the managing staff of Media Matters genuinely embrace the ideology they defend? Actions speak louder than words. In spite of its focus on attacking the rights of Americans to exercise constitutional access to firearms for security and self defense, Brock’s personal assistant was discovered to be concealed carrying a Glock when accompanying Brock to events.
Just a few days ago it was learned that the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), submitted a representation petition to the National Labor Relations Board asserting that Media Matters declined to allow the union to conduct a Card Check election. This from a dot org that has made statements and arguments consistently trumpeting the value of unions and the rights of unions to organize without impediment.
An MMFA researcher, Meagan Hatcher-Mays played the partisan card in deploring “a wave of Republican anti-union legislation [that] has placed obstacles between workers and union representatives and disrupted opportunities for workplace productivity.”
From the website of Perkins Coie, the pro-management law firm that Media Matters has contracted to obstruct the possible unionization of its 50 non-management employees:
Whether directly negotiating collective bargaining agreements, developing strike contingency plans or defending unfair labor practice proceedings, Perkins Coie Labor & Employment attorneys provide employers with decades of experience managing traditional labor law issues …
As the Obama NLRB continues to issue union-friendly decisions, we understand the attendant challenges that employers face in developing and maintaining productive employee relations and economic sustainability.
The embarrassment factor of MMFA putting up a full fledged fight against the SEIU and its own workers is too high. Therefore, MMFA will have to buckle. But perhaps Perkins Coie, who boasts as one of its partners, former Obama White House Counsel Bob Bauer, will be able to negotiate a more favorable arrangement than a business that doesn’t have the track record of meaningless lip service to labor unions.