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Good Morning Nanty Glo!
            Friday, November 21 2003 

Jon Kennedy, webmaster

Frames of reference: the liberal establishment

Though both houses of Congress, the White House, and I believe even most of the state gubernatorial offices are now under Republican control, there is still a strong case for speaking of "the liberal establishment," just as was assumed during the Clinton era. This is because both the mass media and the nation's educational infrastructure are overwhelmingly left-leaning on the great majority of social issues. Having been educated in public schools and major secular universities (Pitt and UCLA) with most of my coursework at those schools having to do with the mass media, and having worked at two other major universities for another 15 years (UC Santa Barbara, four, and Stanford, 11), I've witnessed the effects of this collusion first hand. Both major establishments—media and education—get cues from each other. By and large, the members of both establishments think alike on most political issues.

The professors indoctrinate the journalists and for years after graduating, the journalists are trying to impress the professors they once studied under or, even more so, the ones who determine who will win the Pulitzer Prizes. It's not only the Pulitzers. In other state and regional competitions, like the Keystone Press Awards association from which I won my citation while editor of the Journal, many if not all of the judges of best news and feature output are journalism teachers. I'm not disputing their qualification for the task, but the fact underscores that there is a liberal lock in this most influential establishment of American culture.

Though most of the small newspapers in the United States are owned by Republicans, even those papers get their world and national news and many of their features from the same syndicates run by the Pulitzer aspirants. As a longtime editor, as I know well, even a conservative publisher or editor is likely to succumb to many of the ploys of his idealistic liberal-educated and indoctrinated young turk reporters, photographers, and feature writers.

Just as I was a conservative editorial writer while working for the liberal Democrat owner of the Nanty Glo Journal (Herman Sedloff), I've been known to give jobs and assignments to sharp more liberal j-school graduates trying to get a leg up in the journalistic world. Conversely, in the universities most of the professors get their daily briefings from papers like the New York and Los Angeles Times and the Washington Post and are usually inclined to keep impressing those former students whose bylines appear in those same papers a year or two after graudation.

In the K-12 public schools, the liberal power may be even more entrenched. Many experts on public schooling have editorialized that the NEA (National Education Association) is the most powerful labor union in the nation, and it influences public schools from curriculum to standards for school employment. The NEA produces the largest block of delegates to the Democratic Party's national conventions where, like the collusion between j-school graduates and their professors/former professors, a similar game of political footsie is ever present. Many educators are much more conservative than their national union, of course, but if you've ever been a member of a national or international union, as I have, you know how much say any one member has at any juncture.

Webmaster Jon Kennedy

Fun facts (or "facts," so it says, but take with a grain)

Cat's urine glows under a black light.

Leonardo Da Vinci invented the scissors.

—Sent by Trudy Myers 

Thought for today

Be not afraid of growing slowly—be afraid only of standing still.
— Chinese proverb
Sent by Mary Ann Losiewcz
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