As most of us are aware, the US Corporate Media ceased to be an actual journalistic enterprise sometime ago. Most of what is promoted as news is actually editorial commentary, and intentionally slanted commentary at that. The level of outright propaganda and corporate cronyism in the media has gotten so bad that private companies are now openly offering services to ghostwrite editorial content on the behalf of interested parties.
Keybridge Communications, a Beltway-based PR firm, claims on its own website that it "specializes in writing and placing op-eds." Keybridge's founder, it is said was a former writer for the Wall Street Journal. Now, the company goes on to boast that,
"With some of the country's most influential trade groups and global corporations as clients, we run many of the major op-ed campaigns in the US. We place roughly 3,000 op-eds per year."
So here we have an open admission that---if you're a reader of American op-ed pieces--- chances are you've read one actually penned by Keybridge. And their services aren't limited to writing op-eds: their advertising brochure for prospective clients gives an extensive price list of everything from arranging from radio talk-show interviews to blog management. And they even provide a sample of five op-eds written for the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Los Angeles Daily News, USA Today, and Newsday.
Nothing that Keybridge is doing is actually illegal (although it certainly ought to be). As David Swanson, the activist who exposed Keybridge states: "Paying $5,000 for this service is not simply about paying for research and editing. It's paying for the unfair advantage of having your op-ed pitched by people who've built cozy relationships with editors and in some cases used to be op-ed page editors themselves...it's part of the corruption of a thoroughly corrupt communications system. It's part of the rigging of everything that builds cynicism and resentment."
While we don't usually agree with Swanson on a lot of issues, he's absolutely correct here. This is the same Corporate Media who lectures us every day that countries like Russia are run by corrupt Oligarchs who spread disinformation through their controlled media. And very likely some group like Keybridge was paid to tell us so. That is not as remote a possibility as one might think: as we've seen in the recent Soros Foundation Scandal that George Soros and his gang of Wall Street freebooters set up media-public relations campaigns on a regular basis.
Our 1st Amendment to the Constitution obviously does not give any group the right to monopolize the avenues of communication and access to information. It guarantees the right to freedom of these things; and a corporate oligarchy controlling the press is essentially no different in principle than having an outright State Ministry of Propaganda controlling it. In either case, it's vested interests---and not the people---who benefit from this type of monopoly.
And it's also very likely the case that Keybridge is not the PR firm engaged in this kind of mass-media manipulation. In any event, it should be painfully obvious even to the somnambulant American public that our Fourth Estate is in desperate need of some serious reform. As uncomfortable a fact as this may be, it is becoming painfully obvious that media deregulation is not working. The laws regulating the mass-media instituted by the Truman Administration need to be brought back, as well as Anti-Trust and Conflict of Interest laws being enforced on the Corporate Media. All one has to do is compare the mass media of the Truman Era to today's media to see which system worked and which does not.