Why does everyone in America seem so unhappy? The economy’s doing great, unemployment is the lowest it’s been in decades, and fewer and fewer people are faced with the pressing question of how to put food on the family table. Yet, if you turn on cable news, attend a college lecture or are masochistic enough to spend time on Twitter, you will find mass hysteria on a daily basis. Global warming is going to kill us all. America’s gun laws are going to kill us all. President Donald Trump is going to kill the gays or the transgenders or those who identify as Other. (Of course, abortion – which actually does kill people – gets a pass).
This is outrage culture, as expertly detailed by longtime Daily Caller contributor and podcast host Derek Hunter, in his new book “Outrage, Inc.: How the Liberal Mob Ruined Science, Journalism, and Hollywood.” In an age of so much luxury, Hunter explains, “technological advances have liberated people in the Western world from most of their problems. Some manufacture or magnify problems as a means of manipulation; it’s much easier to be a victim than be responsible.”
If one thing has been made clear over the past few years, it’s that the profession of journalism has failed the American people. In a way, “all the 2016 election did was free reporters from the last vestiges of an antiquated notion of impartiality.” The problem is twofold. First of all, “the power to ignore, to pick and choose, is the most pernicious power journalists have, and they exercise it regularly.” When they pick a narrative – even a blatantly false one like Ferguson teenager Michael Brown declaring “hands up don’t shoot” before being killed by a police officer – they run with it in spite of the facts. On the other hand, formerly staid institutions like Time devote most of their editorial resources to so-called “entertainment journalism,” breaking news of Chrissy Teigen’s tweets with the straight-faced sincerity print outlets had formerly reserved for events like the Patty Hearst kidnapping or the Lufthansa heist. As Hunter puts it, “entertainment journalism is still journalism, the way a wart is technically a tumor,” but when the Fourth Estate devolves to cover, for lack of a better word, “clickbait,” civic awareness necessarily suffers.
Despite the depressing fact that much of the news out there is fake, inane or mendacious, Hunter does not want you to give up. “For all the problems [he has] with modern journalism, journalism itself is incredibly important. Or at least it should be.” He implores his readers not to stop consuming news, but to “consume more of it, from as many sources as you can, from all sides.”
Reading “Outrage, Inc.” will open your eyes to the domination of the Left in public institutions, from the media to the movies to a field of study they insist on calling “science,” and although it may be an unpleasant sight, Hunter argues that becoming aware is actually much healthier than keeping your eyes wide shut.
The best part about “Outrage, Inc.” is that in taking on the tough task of exposing the victimhood culture invading American life, Hunter keeps a light tone, peppering the work with puns and clever turns of phrase such as “Hell hath no fury than a clickbait liberal media bored.” If the contents of “Outrage, Inc.” can be compared to the red pill from the movie “The Matrix,” which allows the taker to see the world as it actually is, Hunter’s wit provides more than a spoonful of sugar to make the medicine go down.
“Outrage, Inc.” is a must-read for those who want to understand the forces at play in American media, especially as they try to seep their way into American life. Want to understand why everyone seems so unhappy? Read this book to find out how public anger became a business–and in some respects, a cult.