The New Blue Media: How Michael Moore, MoveOn.org, Jon Stewart and Company Are Transforming Progressive Politics

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The New Press, May 10, 2011 - Social Science - 240 pages
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Is a new progressive era in American life in the offing? Only time will tell, but journalist Theodore Hamm’s sharp, acerbic book suggests that a new progressive media has already arrived. Satirical, hard-charging, and unapologetically progressive, this new media movement is both reinvigorating old forms like late-night TV and documentaries and inventing new forms like the blogosphere.

In a breezy, accessible style, The New Blue Media traces the rise during the Bush years of new media stars: the news-saturated satire of The Onion, The Daily Show, and The Colbert Report; the polemical assaults of Michael Moore and Air America; and the instant-messaging politics of MoveOn, Daily Kos, and the netroots. With the exception of Air America, all of these new media outlets have found commercial success—marking, says Hamm, a new era in liberal politics.

Does this new media matter? In 2004, both Michael Moore and MoveOn became major players; more recently, the influence of the netroots sparked an upheaval within the Democratic Party, when Connecticut’s Ned Lamont almost defeated former vice-presidential candidate Joseph Lieberman in his campaign for the Senate. Taken as a whole, the New Blue Media are shaping both the style—and in many cases the substance—of twenty-first-century progressive politics.
 

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Contents

1 Reading The Onion Seriously
1
The Rise and Fall of Air America
25
3 The Passion of Michael Moore
51
The Rise of Moveon
85
The Rise of the Blogosphere
115
6 The Success of The Daily ShowColbert Report
155
Conclusion 2008 and Beyond
191
Notes
201
Index
223
Copyright

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About the author (2011)

Theodore Hamm has written about criminal justice for "The Los Angeles Times, ""The Nation, American Quarterly, " and "Souls." He currently teaches in the Metropolitan Studies Program at New York University.

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