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Douglas Andrews / December 17, 2020

The MSM Can’t Live Without Trump

After five years of living off his enormous appeal, the Leftmedia now wonders whether anyone will tune in.

Now what?

That’s what Leftmedia pundits must be thinking. Now that we’ve thoroughly debased ourselves, destroyed our already limited credibility, and conspired with the Democrats to get rid of our raison d'être, what’ll we do for kicks, and clicks, and ratings, and paychecks?

It’s a great question, and one that’s no doubt on the minds of everyone from Jeff Zucker on down to talentless talkingheads like Don Lemon. As The Wall Street Journal’s James Freeman writes, “There’s an emerging media narrative that Joe Biden is more difficult for the press to cover than Donald Trump because Mr. Biden allegedly has superior character and therefore generates fewer scandals. Accepting this spin naturally requires one to ignore the Biden family influence-peddling business. But the fear among media executives about their own businesses is real. Bashing Donald Trump has been profitable. Can you hold an audience by lauding Joe Biden?”

Sans Trump, we think the mainstream media can still hold an audience. Of insomniacs. After all, what better way to put folks to sleep than to cover our sorriest and least-inspiring new president with wall-to-wall hosannas about his “superior character” and “scandal-free” existence?

Frankly, we can’t wait. And we think they’ve made a huge mistake. For as philosopher and cultural critic Barry Manilow once said, “You know I can’t smile without you. I can’t smile without you. I can’t laugh, and I can’t sing. I’m finding it hard to do anything.”

Seriously: What’ll Rachel Maddow do now that she won’t have President Trump to accuse of being in Vladimir Putin’s pocket? What’ll Lemon do now that Trump isn’t holding Klan rallies at the White House? What’ll Jeffrey Toobin do now that, er, uh … never mind about Toobin. He’ll (ahem) find a way to entertain himself.

And then there are the children. Think of the children. And by “children” we don’t mean real children; we mean those emotive, entitled, attention-starved members of Congress. What’ll Nancy Pelosi do for attention if she can’t fake-clap in the president’s face, or tear up his State of the Union speech, or tic her way through an angry, spittle-flecked interview? And what’ll Chuck Schumer do if he can’t steamroll a few colleagues on his way to the nearest mic to denounce the president’s latest depredation?

Then, of course, there are those other children; those Facebook friends of yours who couldn’t keep from caterwauling about Trump for the past four years; who couldn’t keep from posting the latest wishful-thinking hit piece from The New York Times or The Washington Post about how the noose is tightening and the walls are closing in on this vile, racist, traitorous Putin puppet of a president. What are they gonna do without their bête orange? It’s been an awfully tough four years for those poor souls, but who knows? Trump withdrawal might prove even tougher.

Their plight aside, it’s been a flush four years for the resistance media — the Trump-hating networks are doing better now than ever. “Mr. Trump’s refusal to leave the political stage quietly has kept viewers watching through the postelection daze,” the Times tells us. “In recent weeks, CNN is regularly beating Fox News, the longtime No. 1 cable news network, in total viewers. CNN has also led in the advertiser-friendly bracket of adults under the age of 54 every day for more than a month, its longest such streak since the aftermath of Sept. 11, 2001. … With Mr. Trump so central to MSNBC’s ratings surge, some producers see a slide coming. Others at the network say that Trumpism — with its attendant partisanship and politicization of society — will persist, keeping viewers locked in even after Mr. Trump is no longer in the White House.”

Forgive us if we seem skeptical. If Donald Trump isn’t making news, the Trump-hating media isn’t making payroll.

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