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Monday, November 28, 2016

President Trump's election shows the value of newspaper endorsements

The newspapers of America have spoken: 243 endorsed Hillary, 20 endorsed Trump, 9 endorsed Gary Johnson, and 1 endorsed Evan McMullin.

Nothing quite says we-hate-our-readers like telling them to vote for someone they refuse to vote for.

You know how many votes Evan McMullin got in the state where the newspaper endorsed him? None, because West Virginia does not count unregistered write-in votes. Nothing quite says out-of-touch-with-reality like endorsing a candidate whose votes won't count.

What is the point of having newspaper endorsements if all you are doing is pissing off your readers? People in thirty states preferred him over her. It wasn't even close.

Not only were these editorial boards with their over-inflated egos wrong, but the endorsements were insulting.

From the New York Daily News: "Daily News Editorial Board says Vote Hillary Clinton: She’s the best choice for President, while Donald Trump represents a clear and present danger to the republic."
Trump has lied, bullied, insulted, divided and shrugged off a career’s worth of stepping on others because he has tapped into anger at being economically left behind, socially denigrated or politically forgotten among a broad swath of the electorate.
Yes, actually having a government serve a broad swath of the electorate rather than the 1 percenters like the newspaper's owner, Mortimer Zuckerman, really imperils the nation.

From the Houston Chronicle:
Any one of Trump's less-than-sterling qualities -- his erratic temperament, his dodgy business practices, his racism, his Putin-like strongman inclinations and faux-populist demagoguery, his contempt for the rule of law, his ignorance -- is enough to be disqualifying. His convention-speech comment, "I alone can fix it," should make every American shudder. He is, we believe, a danger to the Republic.
The actual full quote was about bribing officials through campaign donations:
I have joined the political arena so that the powerful can no longer beat up on people that cannot defend themselves. Nobody knows the system better than me, which is why I alone can fix it. I have seen firsthand how the system is rigged against our citizens, just like it was rigged against Bernie Sanders – he never had a chance.
Readers knew the Houston Chronicle was cropping the quote. Context matters. That is why the good people of Texas rejected this newspaper's orders to vote for Hillary.

From the Philadelphia Inquirer:
No eligible voter should ever sit out a presidential election, but that is especially so this year. The landscape of the American political system may be forever changed by the Republican Party’s unapologetic nominee, whose scorched-earth, insult-driven, egomaniacal campaign long ago stopped caring about collateral damage to the party or down-ticket GOP candidates.
The last straw for many traditional Republicans was the release of a 2005 taped conversation in which Donald Trump is heard bragging about touching women without their consent. Rather than offer a genuine apology for arguably criminal behavior, Trump did what Trump always does: misdirect. He accused his accusers of being part of a Democrat-led media conspiracy to deny him the White House.
The people of Pennsylvania read this editorial and voted for Trump.

That is if anyone read it.

Newspaper circulations have fallen and they cannot get up. They blame the Internet, but the fact is the social justice warriors in management killed the goose that laid the golden eggs. Newspapers survived radio and television. They should have survived the Internet, but the rock bed of newspaper subscribers are middle-class families who tend to be conservative, while even nominally conservative newspapers are run by social justice warriors. They want to save the world.

More than 30 years ago a wise man told me that the purpose of a newspaper is to make money for its publisher.

That means being fair and accurate in stories for fear of losing credibility (not to mention libel suits).

In the 1980s, newspapers were at peak profit. They abandoned that philosophy in favor of saving a world that doesn't want their salvation. Now they are batshit crazy about The Donald.

If your readers blow off your editorials, why have editorials?

I ask that as a man who wrote editorials for 27 years.


"Trump the Press" skewers media experts who wrongly predicted Trump would lose the Republican nomination. I use my deadliest weapon: their own words. "Trump the Press" is available as a paperback, and on Kindle.

I thank the readers of "Trump the Press," and I thank the 46 readers who left Amazon reviews. It was very fun to write and I am delighted that so many people enjoyed it. 


  1. That's why I dumped the papers I was getting.

  2. "They want to save the world."

    They can't even save themselves.

    -Mikey NTH

    1. It's both complex and simple, this editorial writing.

      The simple part is, love what your readers love, hate what they condemn.

      And if that's a lead you can't swing, hand it off to someone who can.

  3. Who were the presidential candidates you endorsed?

  4. Ron in Ohio Asks:

    Ya' mean there are still a little over 7% of U.S. newspapers that actually have enough backbone to support an anti-establishment, anti-Socialist, fervent pro-American candidate?

    I'd sure like to know who those 20 pro Trump newspapers are Don. Can ya' print a list of them? I'd like to somehow support them the same way that I have been supporting Yuengling beer ever since CEO Richard Yuengling came out for Trump last month.

  5. This comment has been removed by the author.

  6. Ron, I couldn't find the 20, just this: Among the top 100 largest newspapers in America, just two — the Las Vegas Review-Journal and the Florida Times-Union in Jacksonville — endorsed Trump. Per an 11/6 post. Al Reasin

  7. Unrealistic though the movie scene was (marching in perfect formation yet!), those 243 newspapers put me in mind of those Battle of the Bulge panzer crews who have abandoned their out-of-gas machines and are walking back to Germany.

  8. The worst possible thing the MSM could do to Trump would be to come out in support of him. All the anti-establishment voters would start to wonder whether he'd sold out.

    Not much fear of that happening, though.

  9. Stopped my newspaper subscriptions 15 years ago. Too much leftist bias in everything, including the sports section.

    1. I think it was Aldous Huxley who commented in Brave New World that just about every sport every invented basically involved a ball and a few sticks.

      It takes a really try-hard Leftard to politicize those, but boy oh boy, they still manage to do it, don't they?