Recently, I was searching the web and came across a list of billionaires that own media outlets and cable companies. It goes without saying that this is a problem for more reasons than one…first, research suggests that as people become richer, empathy decreases. They lose the ability to put themselves in other peoples shoes and genuinely care about the the struggles that average people face.
In an article published by Scientific American, entitled How Wealth Reduces Compassion: As Riches Grow, Empathy Seems to Decline, it suggests that “given the growing income inequality in the United States, the relationship between wealth and compassion has important implications. Those who hold most of the power in this country, political and otherwise, tend to come from privileged backgrounds. If social class influences how much we care about others, then the most powerful among us may be the least likely to make decisions that help the needy and the poor. They may also be the most likely to engage in unethical behavior”. See link below:
It is no surprise then, that billionaires own top media outlets that choose to omit important information about America’s role in foreign conflicts that leave other nations in ruins and political upheaval. It is no surprise that these news outlets skew the facts and sway reality for the corporate leanings of multi-billionaire CEOs and the interests of the military industrial complex, pharmaceutical companies, fossil fuels, and agrobusiness executives. It’s all one and the same.
According to an article published in Business Insider, Bloomberg Media owned by Michael Bloomberg, former mayor of NYC, is worth $45.7 billion. This is just one of many examples of how many, politics, and media go hand in hand. The article goes on to point out that Rupert Murdoch, the owner of News Corp and founder of Fox News, owns the Wall St. Journal, along with 120 newspapers in 5 countries. One of the share holders is Prince Talal of Saudi Arabia who claims 1% in the company. Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon, owns the Washington Post, and John Henry, Red Sox owner, bought the Boston Globe. Stanley Hubbard of Hubbard Broadcasting owns ABC/NBC and 48 radio stations. Carlos Slim Helu owns The New York Times.
Journalism is under seige and is threatened by rich people who can afford to buy news outlets as “a side enterprise”(Business Insider) to increase their wealth, but with no genuine commitment to print truth or hold anyone accountable for anything at all!
We know that companies linked to the military often advertise in media outlets in order to perpetuate the idea of war and normalize it in people’s minds. It is no secret that the media is a source of war time propaganda that has and still is succeeding in feeding the American people a notion that war is for patriotism, protection, democracy, and promoting the American way, but the reality is that war is war no matter what sugar you mix it with. See link below:
This demands more attention, and more urgency. It is up to individuals to choose alternative perspectives that challenge wealth hoarders and multi-billionaires in exchange for real freedom of thought and the interest of average people. It is important to know the connection between money, politics and media because it illuminates the stories that are told to us as people, that set the stage for the acts that happen upon this stage. We must ask whether we want to continue to passively view acts of violence, racism, greed, and discrimination, or whether we want to actively, purposefully pursue something different.