Federal Judge Laurence Silberman Says Mainstream Media Represents “Threat to Viable Democracy”
A federal judge opined on the increasingly left-wing nature of the mainstream media, saying it’s a threat to American democracy.
Laurence Silberman, a conservative US circuit judge, included these remarks in his dissent on a defamation case. He called the New York Times, Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal news section, NPR, most network and cable news outlets, and Big Tech social media companies “[virtual] Democratic Party broadsheets.”
“One-party control of the press and media is a threat to a viable democracy,” he said.
Interestingly, Silberman also noted it’s not all that good for “[one] man and his son”—Rupert and Lachlan Murdoch—to control Fox News, the New York Post, and the Wall Street Journal editorial page either.
His dissent came in a 2-1 decision to throw out a case filed by two Liberian government officials against Global Witness, an environmental and human rights group. The officials argued that a Global Witness report implied their acceptance of bribes. But the majority opinion said that Global Witness was protected by the “actual malice” precedent of the 1964 SCOTUS decision in New York Times v. Sullivan.
Silberman not only used his dissent to argue the opposite, but also to say that the Supreme Court should overturn its “actual malice” precedent altogether. He claims that this protection allows major media corporations and newspapers “to cast false aspersions on public figures with near impunity,” which is particularly harmful because most of them are not much more than Democratic Party mouthpieces.