Thanks, but no thanks. Mainstream Media Endorsements are a Game I don’t want to play.
My campaign received an email from the Seattle Times. It states:
The Seattle Times editorial board has set aside Wednesday, June 29th, from 1:00 – 1:45 PM, to interview candidates for U.S. Representative, Congressional District 1. The interview will be held at The Seattle Times offices, 1000 Denny Way, Seattle, WA 98109. Please confirm your attendance as soon as possible!
We’ll have all candidates for this position in simultaneously to meet with members of the board, and the format will be Q&A. I’ll send a reminder of the meeting the week prior, and include logistical information on visitor parking.
I appreciate your flexibility — please don’t hesitate to contact me if you’ve got any questions or concerns.
Monica G. Hinckley
Administrative Assistant | Opinion
I read the email twice and talked with several people about it.
I have a busy schedule representing homeowners who are in danger of losing their homes. My office is in Arlington, Washington. It would likely take an hour or more each way to get to and back from the interview, which was only scheduled to last for 45 minutes… less than 15 minutes per candidate.
“Hmmmm” I thought. “Doesn’t sound like they want to get to know much about any of the candidates.”
I should also disclose my experience with the Seattle Times has not been good throughout the years. When I represented fishermen in the 1970s after the expansion of our nation’s exclusive economic zone to 200 miles I observed that newspaper rarely reported the newsworthy events involving my clients. But the Post Intelligencer and other newspapers in Washington, Oregon, and Alaska did.
When I ran for Supreme Court in 2012 the Seattle Times reported I was a “no show” when I don’t recall even being invited to attend an event like the one that publication has invited me to this year.
I pondered the invitation for a few more moments and concluded: This is absurd. How in the world can the Times make a meaningful endorsement of who would be the best representative for the socially and economically diverse communities of citizens that inhabit Washington Congressional District 1 based on talking with each candidate for approximately ten minutes?
So I wrote a letter back to Ms. Hinckley (which didn’t get sent then) which stated:
Thank you for the opportunity to attend your forum.
Unfortunately, I must decline as I am running a citizen’s campaign in which I am attempting to directly engage with the voters.
The Seattle Times, like all mainstream media, attempts to interject itself between candidates and voters by purporting to report what candidates stand for and then make endorsements based on its own biased reporting.
My judgment is this process is rigged from the start to support the two party tyranny in which mainstream media is complicit.
Bernie Sander’s campaign makes this point well. The mainstream media ignored him at first, then tepidly acknowledge his existence, and then “called” elections for Clinton before the polls were even closed.
My notion regarding the democratic aspects of the constitutional Republic our ancestors ratified presumes that citizens are appreciative of their rights to vote and are therefore willing to exert some effort with regard to determining what each candidate for the house of representatives stands for.
My positions on issues, and thought processes in arriving at them, are available to everyone.
I have written a blog since I ran for Supreme Court in 2012.
I am a co-host on an internet radio show called “Taking Back our Country.” Past shows can be listened to clicking this link.
I post legal and other writings here on academia.edu. (You may have to join to view these materials, but there is no cost to do so. Moreover, I believe this is a valuable internet site for most of us to be aware of.)
I have a 5 video series on youtube series called “Gardening and Government” which people can watch at their convenience.
I do not accept donations for my campaign because Ms. DelBene, the Democrat incumbent, already has over a million dollars in her campaign war chest. I assume much of that money will be spent buying ads from your company and the other mainstream media, which depend on this money every election cycle.
I believe spending millions of dollars in getting oneself elected is obscene when so many people are starving and have been forced into homelessness. Certainly, I believe that money could be better spent elsewhere. Hopefully, Ms. DelBene will agree and donate these funds to people and charities that need them and debate her rivals on the issues.
Thank you for the opportunity to reduce my life and views into less than a 15 minute opportunity to tell your editors where I stand so that they can re-interpret that for your readers. But under the under circumstances, I prefer to speak directly to the voters.
After reading this letter, my campaign advisors suggested I send Ms. Hinckley a different letter. A letter in which I offered to send an emissary closer to Seattle to present my views.
So we wrote a letter offering to have Jacob Roney, who lives closer to Seattle, attend the interview on my behalf.
We got a letter back from Ms. Hinckley saying this would not be acceptable and again asking that I confirm my attendance. I tried calling her a few minutes ago to decline. I will also send her an email or perhaps a copy of this blog to appropriately RSVP my intentions.
It seems like we are living in two different worlds today. The one portrayed by the mainstream media and the one which is reflected on social media. No doubt there is some overlap.
But I believe that for the most part the mainstream media detracts from those rights to freedom of thought and speech contemplated by our founders and illustrated in those times by the Federalist Papers and pamphlets like Tom Paine’s “Common Sense.”
I believe that mainstream media propaganda does little to promote free speech. In fact, I have written about this. If you are interested please read Matt Taibbi and Hawaii Five 0 and When Political Institutions Fail Us
Like I said in the beginning “Thanks, but no thanks. Mainstream media endorsements are a game I don’t want to play”