It’s safe to say that professional conservative commentators have defeated their liberal counterparts. On television, Fox News crushes CNN and MSNBC. Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Mark Levin, and Glenn Beck draw millions of listeners to their radio shows every day. Does anybody even remember Air America? Conservative books routinely rocket to the top of the New York Times bestseller list. Bill O’Reilly achieved the rare feat of having two books on Times’s non-fiction list at the same time; that was something nobody had achieved since . . . Barack Obama ran for president in 2008, and his memoirs rocketed to the top of the list.
But where has it all gotten us? Conservatives, by and large, are devastated by the state of the country.
National Review has been making a substantial and growing contribution to reporting on subjects that would otherwise go unexamined.
My suspicion is that large swaths of the country can ignore conservative opinion because they can dismiss it as such. What they can’t ignore is reporting, be it conservative or liberal, and that it’s reporting that has been the subtle thumb on the scale in elections going back decades now.
National Review has been making a substantial and growing contribution to reporting on subjects that would otherwise go unexamined. Take, for example, Jillian Kay Melchior’s report on the substantial tax debts owed by four MSNBC hosts — hosts who routinely call, on the air, for increasing taxes. Or our recent revelation that Massachusetts senator Elizabeth Warren, who rose to prominence denouncing real-estate speculators, herself flipped several homes for profit. This is reporting both about the people at hand but also about political identity, because it calls into question the subjects’ self-proclaimed status as ideological purists.
Republicans are routinely subject to this sort of scrutiny. Rather than complaining about media bias, National Review is doing not only conservatives, but the country, a service by subjecting Democrats to the same thing. It just so happens to make for good reading, too.