Enhance a fear of Iran. Promote a privatization policy. Encourage the view that Israel has no peace partner. If you do all that, don’t expect the voters to reject the person who represents this very worldview.
Daniel Dor (translated by Sol Salbe)
I recently heard some people saying that we now have the proof that the media really does not have any sway over the voting public. Look how much effort it invested in the campaign against Netanyahu, and once again he won. A generation of media professionals will now be raised on this so-called insight. It fits the industry’s capitalist instincts like a glove: if it really doesn’t matter what we do, then why not continue selling some marketing content, regurgitate cliches and call it a day.
But this so-called insight is not only dangerous — it is also wrong. There is, of course, the minor matter of Israel Hayom: only those in-crowd of the media bubble think that everyone knows the paper belongs to Netanyahu. It is reasonable to assume that it carries as much weight in the broad community as the old established papers.
The main point, however, revolves around the very essence of the media’s impact: it works in the long term. Take Yedioth Ahronoth, which day after day markets to its readers a perspective that strengthens the fear of Arabs and Iranians. It is a perspective which ignores the occupation and its horrors and continually reiterates that there is no partner for peace and there is unlikely to be one any time soon. The paper’s viewpoint expresses open contempt and reasoned disdain for the social protest movement. It may be somewhat afraid of a quarrel with the U.S,, but is convinced that the whole world is against us because of its anti-Semitism. It visualizes economic reality from the perspective of a child’s version of capitalism (the newspaper itself, not its sister publication, Calcalist, devoted to financial matters), and so on. The list is long.
In this way, Yedioth creates the ideological basis upon which Bibi is perched. You can keep on calling it a “leftist” newspaper till the cows come home. The ideology it portrays is undoubtedly a right-wing one.
And then Yedioth Ahronoth suddenly decides to get rid of Bibi the individual, but not what he stands for. It embarks on a campaign to convince people to toss him out on the basis of...Read More