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Why Americans aren’t revolting: Government owns the media

Marty Kaplan, director of USC Annenberg’s Norman Lear Center, appeared on Moyers & Company to explain why Americans aren’t following the path of Brazilians to seek political reform.

“We have unemployment and hunger and crumbling infrastructure and a tax system of whack and a corrupt political system,” he said.

“Why are we not also taking to the streets is the question.”

Kaplan said that present-day American journalism’s focus on “infotainment” distracts the public from paying attention to issues of high national importance.

“The stuff that is being reported on the news tends not to be the kind of stuff that we need to know about in order to be outraged.”

The media industry, which is now defined by political donations and a lack of public accountability, is part of “the dysfunctional system that we are forced to live under [that] destroys momentum and creates stasis . . . rather than enabling reform.”

“The news industry is now part of the privileged elite,” Kaplan said. “They are not the scrappy adversaries that one would hope they would be fighting for the little guy. They are the man.”

Watch the interview here.
Read the full transcript here.
Marty Kaplan
Norman Lear Center


Published inGlobalMediaSocioeconomic and Race Relations