Monday, October 12, 2009

"Internet Left Fringe," eh?

I don't know if this is true, or if this is Harwood's own phrasing on something that a "White House source" said, but I'm going to take a few seconds to play with it in any case.

First off, the corporate media has far more reason to dismiss bloggers as the "Internet left fringe" than staffers of a president who was put in office on the backs of millions of "Internet left fringe" donors and volunteers. Yet it seems that Obama's staff, headed of course by one Rahm Emanuel, he of the "fuck the 50-state strategy, take the corporate money" thought process, has bought into the "Church of the Savvy" position that bloggers are a sad, silly minority of people online who will never be satisfied with anything.

Sure, I've seen people on the Internet whining that Obama is no different than Bush. It shouldn't have taken a Nobel Peace Prize for us to know that that line is objectively false. That doesn't mean that we don't get to be pissed when Obama's not living up to his promises. And as Jane Hamsher and the others who raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for candidates to support a public option could tell you, the "internet left fringe" can move dollars and poll numbers and support.

As for the National Equality March, like other protests for social justice, it gets written off as "fringe" by the same mainstream media that fetishized the tea parties. It seems they don't have enough corporate sponsorship to be taken seriously. As usual, real grassroots is threatening to those in power, whether their power is corporate media or political insiderdom.

It's too bad, though, for Rahm and his cohorts and for Harwood and the rest of the media. The netroots got a taste of its own power (ironically, starting with its ability to put Obama in the White House) and it's not going away, it's growing. And more and more of us are leaving the basement, taking off the pajamas, and going to an office for a media job--to which we bring the same political ideas, the same social justice values, and the same drive to get the job done that we did when blogging was something we squeezed in in our spare time because we just cared so damn much.

(In other news, today's my first official day at the new job. Wish me luck!)