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Web site battles: a conservative political philosophy charges ahead

By Ben-Peter Terpstra
web  posted May 25, 2009

Is the conservative movement dying? No. When it comes to news and analysis web sites, even some right-of-centre web sites with limited budgets are outperforming millionaire liberal outfits.

Consider, for example, the top twenty news analysis and opinion web sites I accessed on the 10th of May, 2009 over at Alexa. The sites -- predominantly American -- in the category paint a diverse picture:

  1. FoxNews.com (a right-and-left debating channel/online news-and-opinion magazine)
  2. Atlantic Online (left-of-centre site)
  3. National Review Online (a conservative and libertarian-minded magazine)
  4. Malkin, Michelle (right-of-centre site)
  5. Village Voice (left-of-centre site)  
  6. Townhall.com: Conservative Columnists (right-of-centre site)
  7. The Times and The Sunday Times (UK) (a relatively moderate newspaper site)
  8. The New Republic (left-of-centre site)  
  9. Goldberg, Lucianne (right-of-centre site)
  10. The Online NewsHour (left-of-centre site)
  11. Washington Monthly Online (left-of-centre site)
  12. The Economist - Analysis and Opinion (left-of-centre site)
  13. FrontPage Magazine  (right-of-centre site)
  14. Jewish World Review (right-of-centre site)
  15. Scheer, Robert (left-of-centre site)
  16. IPS Inter Press Service - Global News Agency (left-of-centre site)
  17. GlobalIssues.org (left-of-centre site)
  18. worldpress.org (left-of-centre site)
  19. Opposing Views (a right-and-left debating essay site)
  20. Masterson, Dick - Men Are Better Than Women (an incorrect satirical site )

This, of course, is but one snapshot, and even Alexa is not scientifically perfect (an impossible task). Still, it clearly demonstrates that there is a huge hunger for conservative and libertarian views today. It also suggests that the old media is making out-of-touch arguments or trying to dishearten conservative and libertarian voters.  

Again, context is crucial. Over at Right Wing News for example, John Hawkins recognizes that: "Alexa doesn't distinguish between top level domains and their sub-directories. So, for example, a blog on Townhall and Townhall itself would have the same rating."

He makes a fair point. Plus, looking at web sites over a three-month period is also revealing. For instance, global internet users who visit the Village Voice are down (6%), whereas the conservative Michelle Malkin's visitor numbers are up (47%), according to the information I gathered on the same day.

Television is an important medium too. In 2008, Obama, an entitlement politician, made the following statement: "I am convinced that if there were no Fox News, I might be two or three points higher in the polls." Why? Because Obama felt that even the existence of one debating channel threatens the liberal agenda.

Then again, and according to Obama's liberal logic (or lack thereof), I am convinced that if there were no CNN, no MSNBC, no ABC, no NBC, no CBS and no PBS, that John McCain would still be laughing with twelve to eighteen extra points in the White House.

In 2009, Fox News continues to expand out while liberal networks are just struggling to keep their yawning audiences awake.  
Certainly listening-tour politicians can't afford to ignore the importance of crossover mediums, such as cable news channels with interactive website houses. Look at how right-of-centre audiences are responding:

FOXNEWS 3,390,000 (politically incorrect)
MSNBC 1,210,000 (politically correct)
CNN 1,070,000 (politically correct)
CNN HEADLINE 909,000 (politically correct)

Fox News is surging, CNN is in a quagmire and in the United States ratings speak louder than words:

FOXNEWS BECK 2,740,000
FOXNEWS SHEP 2,185,000
CNN GRACE 1,336,000
CNN KING 1,292,000
MSNBC MADDOW 1,149,000
CNN COOPER 1,021,000

If, according to Obama's liberal logic (or lack thereof) again, Fox News really took two to three points away from him in 2008, then we must accept that debating shows will be taking more points away from liberals now. But there are other problems for the Left.

Take Amazon.com. I like to call it the FOX News of the book world. In the traditional liberal bookstore, conservatives were given few choices, as the liberal publishing world, ironically enough, aborted many conservative books. What's more, some bookshop liberals were even hiding conservative texts from shoppers if they were lucky enough to be born, meaning the books.

Now? In 2009, Ann Coulter's Guilty is her seventh New York Times bestseller, and was found innocent, by thousands of shoppers in the Court of Amazon.com. Meanwhile, hand-on-hips Democrats are still trying to come to terms with the fact that Liberty and Tyranny: A Conservative Manifesto by Mark Levin dominated Amazon's number one position for weeks. And, how did Clint Eastwood's Gran Tornio become one of the best DVDs of May 2009?

Meghan McCain likes to talk down to conservative Republicans, as opposed to MSNBC. Sure, conservatives can do things better, and "twitter" more. All parties can. But, if conservatism is dying, then dying must have plenty of life left in it, right? Most definitely. Time to cancel Palin's funeral? You betcha! ESR

Ben-Peter Terpstrais an Australian satirist. His works have been posted on numerous sites from American Thinker (California) to Quadrant Online (Sydney, Australia). His commentary has been linked to such popular web sites as Ann Coulter, WorldNetDaily, Rush Limbaugh, Michael Savage and Big Hollywood.


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