No matter who ultimately wins the presidential election, the Jews in America are the big losers. As Professor Ruth Wisse of Harvard has long explained, Jews are the bellwether for the health of democracies. Hatred of Jews rises in societies whose democratic institutions and values are in crisis. Jew-hatred is generally low in healthy, working democracies.
If we learned nothing else from the election campaign and its aftermath, we learned American democracy is in crisis.
The media is the first force responsible for this crisis. For the past four years, all major U.S. television networks and national newspapers have dedicated themselves not to reporting news, but to defining the boundaries of acceptable public discourse. Big Tech firms—Facebook, Google and Twitter, in particular, having amassed powers the KGB could only have dreamed of—serve as the enforcers of those boundaries.
The goal of all media corporations has been the same: to overturn the results of the 2016 election. To advance this goal, the media have demonized President Donald Trump and his supporters for four straight years. The shared conviction has been that by subjecting the public to continuous indoctrination to hate Trump and his supporters, Trump would disappear from the White House, whether through a prolonged special counsel probe, impeachment or defeat at the polls.Newsweek subscription offers >
Nearly all the stories about Trump and his supporters have been negative for the past four years. Consequently, while most Americans never heard that Trump conceived and implemented an entirely new foreign policy doctrine that has met more success than any adopted since the end of the Cold War, all Americans know that the media expect them to believe Trump is a racist. They know that the media expect right-thinking Americans to hate Trump and his supporters, and admire his opponents, from Nancy Pelosi to Black Lives Matter (BLM).
Big Tech, for its part, has made clear that Trump supporters express their support for the Orange Man at their own risk. They may be subjected to doxxing or ostracism, and they may be de-platformed or even fired if they make their views—which deviate from the acceptable boundaries of public discourse, as dictated by the media—known online.
This massive multi-year indoctrination and enforcement campaign has had mixed results. On the one hand, the election results demonstrated that the media moguls and the social media bazillionaires have utterly failed to convince the public to hate Trump and his supporters. Trump won more votes last week than he won in 2016. He dramatically expanded his support among Hispanics and blacks.
On the other hand, the polls show how the media and Big Tech have changed American society. There are probably two reasons that the polls were even further off the mark in 2020 than they were in 2016. First, the pollsters themselves operate inside the media bubble. The likes of Nate Silver know that the likes of Jeff Zucker and Jeff Bezos aren’t interested in what the public thinks. They are intent on telling the public what to think. The pollsters’ questions and polling samples did just that by predicting the desired results.