Brent Bozell and Bill Whittle (20:36) join Dave Sussman at American Freedom Alliance. Brent (Media Research Center) discusses the ongoing efforts to silence conservative voices online and Bill discusses the attack on culture, media, and entertainment. Find Brent’s and Bills speeches at http://AmericanFreedomAlliance.org and please support the AFA.

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There are 8 comments.

  1. Aaron Miller Member

    Surprisingly, I found Bozell more insightful than Whittle this time. I like both, but only follow Whittle on YouTube.

    Both Bozell’s call for anti-monopoly actions and your trepidation aboit such actions, Dave, are justified. The dilemma is that companies become monopolies by the same behaviors that took them from small companies to transnational corporations, so anti-monopoly regulations punish success beyond arbitrary points. But such giant corporations are indeed anti-competitive and cooperate with corrupted governments to keep it that way. Breaking up companies isn’t entirely intrusive because those companies are already intertwined with government and politics.

    Whittle is correct that people aren’t watching long educational videos because there are so many options available and many more enjoyable.

    But his claim about video games is ridiculous. Increasingly, the Left’s nonsense creeps into video game settings, if not the war shooters Bill prefers — just one corner of a huge market. But the main reason games remain mostly combat-oriented is because that kind of activity translates best to a medium of props and pushing buttons. Dialogue-oriented gameplay is expensive and difficult to adjust. And it is simply impossible at this point to enable player creativity in NPC conversations in any way comparable to the freedom of combat gameplay. Furthermore, games rely on feedback loops, which are much more amenable to combat and acquisition.

    The Mass Effect series is a great example. It combines creative combat like Bill enjoys in a setting of soldiers with Leftist sensibilities and dialogue options. It’s not just a hippie screed. It’s a great series. But the game industry is as overwhelmingly leftwing as the movie industry, and it shows.

    Incidentally, my Xbox gamertag is immortalized as an easter egg in the pirate game Sea of Thieves, despite my complaint when one of their first additions for ship flags was a Yay Gay rainbow flag — injecting politics into escapist fantasy. Considering how intolerant most leftists are of dissent, I’m surprised (and thankful) my tribute remains. Developers and all major Westerm publishers constantly push the Left’s confused ideas about diversity.

    With games, as with films, writers of the Left often imbue their stories with conservative themes by accident.

    • #1
    • May 27, 2019, at 9:24 AM PDT
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  2. Aaron Miller Member

    Again, games tend to be escapist fantasies. 

    Please excuse me for harping on about this. I’m a fanatical gamer and have been writing about game design, talking with developers, for decades. The aforementioned easter egg was for being among the game’s first external testers. 

    Half the players of the Red Dead Redemption cowboy games are hippies, as are most of the games’ developers at Rockstar in Britain (creators of the Grand Theft Auto series). The storytelling is top-notch and is generally apolitical. Hippies can enjoy fantasies of the Wild West without favoring limited, local government in reality. They can enjoy stories of apolitical characters between hyper-political exhibitionism is reality. They can love to play with virtual guns and armies while trying to abolish the right to bear arms. 

    Whittle knows the Left is philosophically inconsistent. Why does he imagine action games or Wild West games offer more hope than their counterparts in film? Why won’t “calling to their biology” simply put the male predilection for war under the direction of Leftist dictators? After all, the Left pretend to be liberators. 

    Bill is right in one respect. When guys play shooter games, they are fantasizing about real heroism (even if the same fools often consider Che Guevara or Barack Obama a hero) that they can’t enact in real life. That’s a problem for any peacetime generation. War sets Good against Evil in the starkest terms. Fighting for Good without fighting is more complicated. Living for justice through a thousand boring routines in daily life doesn’t offer the same thrills or clarity as war. It’s easy to surrender to a habit of fiction (even if it’s reading books) when your real life is not half so thrilling. 

    Actually, it would be a mistake to say players of Activision’s Call of Duty or EA’s Battlefield are playing for stories of heroism. Though most players want and enjoy the single-player story campaigns, what makes those games reliable money-makers are the multiplayer modes in which players simply compete with guns in matches, akin to a sport. You wouldn’t pretend NFL players are mostly conservative. 

    • #2
    • May 27, 2019, at 10:11 AM PDT
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  3. Aaron Miller Member

    Bill’s focus on shooter games got me curious about game genre competition.

    Game sales statistics are not as reliable as they used to be because digital copies, a growing portion of copies sold, are poorly tracked and publishers don’t report combined totals. But here are the top 20 bestselling games (excluding phone and tablet games) of 2018. 

    If you include competitive match shooters with traditional sports like basketball and soccer, then half of the bestselling games were sports. Most of the remaining bestselling games were single-player adventures. 

    The list for 2017 looks much the same.

    In fact, some of the games are on both lists. While the film industry mainly reports box office sales and leaves DVDs or other downstream copy sales in the dark, games rely mostly on copies owned and sale of supplemtary content (cosmetic microtransactions, expansion packs, etc). There is increasing focus on post-launch content. Thus, game publishers rely on sales after launch, as do makers of professional software. Subscriptions and game streaming are newer avenues of revenue. 

    Anyway, gaming is a bigger industry than movies and has a significant impact on culture. But it’s important to keep in mind that games are as diverse as movies and books. They address many different but overlapping audiences by different approaches. Some genres are more amenable than others for communication of values — which, like Whittle, I believe must usually be offered with subtelty.

    • #3
    • May 27, 2019, at 11:36 AM PDT
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  4. Joe D. Lincoln

    I remember seeing something about ‘mewe’ last year – I think here. I was hoping that would take off. Although, I must admit I have not bothered to make an account there yet.

    Edit – found it: here:

    https://ricochet.com/podcast/whiskey-politics/mark-weinstein-perils-social-media-surveillance/

    • #4
    • May 28, 2019, at 12:01 PM PDT
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  5. Joe D. Lincoln

    I totally agree on the Star Wars front. I didn’t even see the film and I became a non film. I won’t say I will never see another Star Wars film, but I will only see them because I would be with other people who will want to see them. I would watch the original 3 again, though, though not George Lucas’s remakes…

    • #5
    • May 28, 2019, at 12:16 PM PDT
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  6. Dave Sussman Contributor

    Aaron Miller (View Comment):
    Both Bozell’s call for anti-monopoly actions and your trepidation aboit such actions, Dave, are justified. The dilemma is that companies become monopolies by the same behaviors that took them from small companies to transnational corporations, so anti-monopoly regulations punish success beyond arbitrary points. But such giant corporations are indeed anti-competitive and cooperate with corrupted governments to keep it that way. Breaking up companies isn’t entirely intrusive because those companies are already intertwined with government and politics.

    I think any free-market solutions are always preferred, yet Facebook, Twitter, Google and Apple essentially have more control than any Microsoft ever did. These tech titans can and do control media messaging, which impacts elections. I am not sure trust busting will even help though. Even if Facebook was split, they would still control much of what we see and hear through it’s other properties. 

    BTW, I spoke about this on another show or radio broadcast, Microsoft Words’ next version will have a politically correct filter, like spellcheck. 

    • #6
    • May 28, 2019, at 4:43 PM PDT
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  7. Dave Sussman Contributor

    Joe D. (View Comment):

    I remember seeing something about ‘mewe’ last year – I think here. I was hoping that would take off. Although, I must admit I have not bothered to make an account there yet.

    Edit – found it: here:

    https://ricochet.com/podcast/whiskey-politics/mark-weinstein-perils-social-media-surveillance/

    MeWe and other new platforms coming up against trillion-dollar titans face almost insurmountable odds. 

    I am all for MeWe and became a member. Unfortunately, until a massive migration occurs, the place to be read and influence still remains on FB, Twitter, and YouTube.

    • #7
    • May 28, 2019, at 4:46 PM PDT
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  8. Joe D. Lincoln

    Dave Sussman (View Comment):

    Joe D. (View Comment):

    I remember seeing something about ‘mewe’ last year – I think here. I was hoping that would take off. Although, I must admit I have not bothered to make an account there yet.

    Edit – found it: here:

    https://ricochet.com/podcast/whiskey-politics/mark-weinstein-perils-social-media-surveillance/

    MeWe and other new platforms coming up against trillion-dollar titans face almost insurmountable odds.

    I am all for MeWe and became a member. Unfortunately, until a massive migration occurs, the place to be read and influence still remains on FB, Twitter, and YouTube.

    Facebook ate MySpace’s lunch. Google ate Yahoo’s. Microsoft was dominant for quite some time, and when they started big tech was IBM. There are also all kinds of other social media outlets that I don’t use (and in some cases barely use) like snapchat, instagram, etc. So, I think there’s enough space, and if we could get people to be more privacy concerned then ultimately things like MeWe and DuckDuckGo will gradually garner a reasonably sufficient market space.

    I have no idea what compete’s with youtube. That seems pretty dominant, and pretty expensive to try to make a competitor for.

    • #8
    • May 29, 2019, at 6:49 AM PDT
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