De omnibus dubitandum
11 Nov 2010
PowNed is a new Dutch broadcaster that aims itself at a right-wing audience and intends to break the “left-wing monopoly on news”.
I’ve watched a couple of episodes of their news programme (courtesy of Uitzending Gemist) and it’s a typical brand of Fox News-esque political gossip, smear-campaigns, and misrepresentation – i.e. it’s not news, it’s right-wing propaganda.
What PowNed does manage to reveal is a deeper and more disturbing trend: a growing disconnect between the ideologies of the right-wing political spectrum and the world that we live in.
PowNed and Fox News share the claim that they wants to serve as a counter-balance to a mainstream media in their respective countries that they see as increasingly left-wing. There is a nugget of truth at the core of this – the news coming out of MSNBC and any news programme produced by the VARA should be understood within their contexts as organisations with left-wing political affiliations.
But the criticism levied by Fox and PowNed goes beyond these obviously left-wing broadcasters. They seem to claim that all news that is not reported through their own lens of right-wing distortion is inherently left-wing. Every news organisation, from CNN to AP, from the NOS to Reuters, is apparently tainted with a left-wing political agenda.
In other words, Fox News and PowNed seem to believe that reality itself has a left-wing bias.
This is, of course, utter nonsense. But it is very revealing, in that this demonstrates the level of disconnect between the right-wing ideologies so vocally espoused by Fox and PowNed and what is actually happening in the real world.
It appears that the people behind Fox and PowNed live in a separate reality from ours. A dumbed-down, simplistic reality where the free market is a cure-all for society’s ills, where lower taxes will fix all economic woes, where the poor deserve to be poor, where man-made climate change isn’t real, and where immigrants are inherently evil.
Fox and PowNed aren’t singular entities. They thrive on the support of the right-wing demographic – Republicans and Tea Partiers in the USA, and VVD and PVV voters in the Netherlands. The ideas broadcast by Fox and PowNed are shared by these people, which form a growing segment of both countries’ population.
And that is a very dangerous and disturbing trend.
When one person discards reality in favour of their own delusional view of the world, it’s called insanity. When a million people do it, it’s called right-wing politics.