Patterico's Pontifications


The Effects of the RedState Firings Are Still Being Felt

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:59 am

Three great writers resigned from RedState yesterday. Kimberly Ross and Andrea Ruth explain why:

Unfortunately, though we continue to appreciate the hard work of our writing colleagues and hold great respect for most of them, we are no longer proud to write under the banner of RedState, or its parent group, Townhall Media, which is an affiliate of the Salem Media Group.

In April 2018, Salem management determined there had been enough front-page criticism of Trump and decided to take action. A number of long-time writers and editors, who happened to be unapologetic Trump critics, were dismissed from the site without warning. Among those let go was Managing Editor Caleb Howe, who was fired while traveling to a Salem work event. Management locked out access to the CMS, leaving writers unable to log in and wondering what was wrong. It wasn’t until hours later that Townhall VP & General Manager Jonathan Garthwaite sent emails informing those writers that contracts had been terminated.

In an attempt to save face, management insisted the decision was financial and not ideological, as a handful of Trump-critical writers remained. However, those with longer tenures, higher public profiles and biggest traffic draws were all let go. The financial excuse holds little water considering those let go were revenue-drivers.

The message was clear: Tread lightly when it comes to criticizing Trump.

. . . .

Afterward, despite holding on to some Trump critics, the tenor of the site shifted. The leftover Trump critics wrote fewer entries and the hostility toward those who still did was palpable.

We learned personally that writers who dare to examine President Trump or the MAGA mentality are purposely suppressed in private or even publicly criticized.

When I left, I still liked many of the people who remained, and I still do. I associate myself with the remarks of Dan McLaughlin:

But when the purge happened, I noted that it sent an obvious chilling message. Some of the people who remained did their best to ignore the chill, but the chill was there. It still is. You don’t fire a large group of productive and successful writers because of their point of view, and expect that to have no effect.

Best of luck to the good writers who still remain there.

[Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.]

48 Responses to “The Effects of the RedState Firings Are Still Being Felt”

  1. it’s so rare to see effective push back like this after the left infiltrates a media property or business

    Good for these Townhall people

    Fox News could learn something from these guys

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  2. though i write with the words of jefferson and hamilton
    and kiss not trump’s behind every waking moment
    i am become a leftie, a nevertrump cuck

    and though i promote conservative thought and positions
    and dream not of kissing trump’s behind every sleeping moment
    i am nothing

    and though i give clear and concise analyses of current issues
    and the taste of trump’s behind is not in my mouth
    it profiteth me nothing

    nk (dbc370)

  3. nonono you are miusunderstand Mr. nk

    it’s not you oh my goodness

    it’s the people what coddle and condone the filthy coup perpetrated by gestapo bob and the trashy men and women of the corrupt and polluted Chris Wray fbi: this tolerance of failmerica’s aggressive and malevolent police state is quintessential, definitional leftism

    and this is no good

    for we’ve entered the crucible and we stand at the crux

    is this who we are?

    i say we’re better than this!

    and that’s why I stand with our president

    that’s why I stand with President Donald Trump (america president)

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  4. So the Russian hooker proved a bust, as did the approval cot the trump tower meet, a did a dozen other jumpings to Co cluzions,

    narciso (d1f714)

  5. oopers *misunderstand* i mean

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  6. the dirty chinesers ship it to mexico first then they pay people to waltz it across the open border

    but it’s not a dirty bomb that’s just silly

    unless they make dirty bombs what only kill drug abusers, which they do not

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  7. Well fentaNyl was what incapacitated those people at the Moscow tneatre:

    narciso (d1f714)

  8. As did “the shutdown hurt the economy”. From CNBC of all places:
    Payrolls surge by 304,000, smashing estimates despite government shutdown

    But like Smokey Robinson never said:
    “A taste of Trump’s behind is worse than none at all.
    It’s not enough to give him credit when credit is due.
    You gotta give him a lifetime of devotion.
    And second that emotion.”

    nk (dbc370)

  9. The Chinese? The Chinese had to import opium. Try Afghanistan. That’s where the poppy flower grows.

    nk (dbc370)

  10. They don’t get cause and effect do they:

    narciso (d1f714)

  11. It was obvious long ago that legions of Trump fans are more devoted to the person of Trump than to any policy agenda or item, including “the wall.” They are triggered by any criticism of Trump, and quick to condemn the critic, however demonstrably factual the criticism.

    The core doctrine of Trumplandia is that Donald Trump is always wiser and more far-seeing and nobler of purpose and purer of heart than anyone who ever contradicts him; that he cannot conceivably be doing something that isn’t in the very best interests of America (as Falwell Jr. believes). And that the rest of us are deranged for failing to share such unconditional faith and adoration.

    This kind of hero-worship is not a healthy way to view public issues.

    Radegunda (694c3c)

  12. There was a time when every media writer KNEW that if their views clashed with those of the Management/Owners, they had better keep those views under their hats. That was business as usual. The First Amendment guarantees you freedom of Speech and of the Press; but if you want to exercise the latter, you need to obtain your OWN press and pay for the paper yourself.

    The *shock* Writers! Fired! For! THEIR ! VIEWS! is a product of the fantasy that an unbiased media is desirable, or even possible.

    C. S. P. Schofield (f7316d)

  13. Such toxic indifference to the actual state of the nation, reflected by the rizzotto press is distressing, but not surprising buzzard feed won hosannas while it crashed like thanos ship on titan, same for puffington and vice.

    narciso (d1f714)

  14. Hanging out at RedState was my first foray into Conservative media. Where I encountered our host and several of the commenters here. Paul Montagu, AJ_Liberty. You have a mod over there who will tell you “feelings aren’t facts (how original)” and then ban you for disagreeing with him. Hey I guess Salem must be happy with him; they have kept him around a long time.

    JRH (fe281f)

  15. That’s not really the issue, C.S.P.. For its readers (which do not include me), Townhall is now just another Fake News organ, like the Fake News Democrat organs, propagating dezinformatsiya for Trump right or wrong.

    nk (dbc370)

  16. at its best, Red State helps people appreciate the nuances of all the good policies

    at its worst though it’s offered a stinky pottage of negativism and disgruntlement

    sounds like that won’t be a problem no mores going forward, and I for one am happy to add these fine people to my book of marks

    click click click!

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  17. 14. Well, one thing is that the “views” of the owner of Red State changed, or got more restricted.

    And there’s a feeling that maybe they are not views of anybody – and one result is Red State is no longer as advertised. As it was.

    Sammy Finkelman (b0ece0)

  18. Narciso

    Have Clarice Feldman explain this to you.

    New Witness Emerges In Mueller-Linked Scooter Libby Set-Up

    Eye Doctor (984b6e)

  19. “Indiana… let it go.” – Prof. Henry Jones [Sean Connery] ‘Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade’ 1989

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  20. Memo to Ross & Ruth:

    What goes around, comes around; welcome to 1964, kids.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  21. 6.But wait we were told it all came from china:

    You miss the real point (and so apparently did Cotton). This stuff comes through the ports of entry and is caught by more intensive searches and better technology, just like the Democrats have said. A wall out in the desert has no bearing on that.

    kishnevi (d764f4)

  22. McLaughlin is one of the good ones. I was one of the earliest front-page writers at Redstate when it began in 2004± (dba Charles Bird) and he was there, producing top-quality content.
    I was eventually removed from the front page after the 2006 election because the guys in charge didn’t like it that I kept calling for Rumsfeld to be sacked, even though I was right. In 2010, I was bam-sticked entirely for criticizing the party for supporting Christine O’Donnell, her nomination which guaranteed a seat for the Democrats.
    I came back to RedState in 2016 because they had writers who had the freedom to defend or criticize Trump. It made for interesting discussions and the site was the better for it. Obviously, that didn’t last long. With Salem running the show, the site is a shell of what it once was, but it wasn’t without intolerance even thirteen years ago.

    Paul Montagu (e7d63b)

  23. Delaware is a lost cause, they worship moloch almost as diligently as New York, it doesn’t matter who you put in there, but the contempt I saw on this board was rather extraordinary only echoed with Roy Moore seven years later.

    Narciso (927fb3)

  24. Narciso

    Nothing to say?

    That’s a first!

    Eye Doctor (984b6e)

  25. The complaint of Ross et al about political grifting is kind of ironic given that most of the politicians she and the rest of the NeverTrump faction support (Mittens, Paul Ryan, Kaisch, Snowflake,etc) pretend to be true blue conservatives during the election season and immediately sign on to bad deals with Democrats after safely being elected and breaking their promises. Oh, and I don’t see them calling out Democratic journalists, etc for poisoning the political atmosphere.

    CygnusAnalogMan (9c66ec)

  26. Delaware is a lost cause…

    Maybe, but Mike Castle was a lock to win the general. Instead, the GOP decided that it was better to lose with an ideologically “purer” candidate.

    Paul Montagu (e7d63b)

  27. @ Paul Montagu – it’s amazing how quickly moderate Republicans demand the loyalty and votes of their conservative opponents within the Party when they win a primary and how quickly they sulk away in anger and disgust when they lose. Castle might (key word-might) have beaten Coons,but he failed to make a convincing argument that he would listen to conservative policy concerns. Then he refuses to support the nominee after he gets his ass handed to him? Good riddance.

    CygnusAnalogMan (9c66ec)

  28. Foxconn to build factory in Wisconsin after Trump intervened

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  29. But like Smokey Robinson never said:
    “A taste of Trump’s behind is worse than none at all.
    It’s not enough to give him credit when credit is due.
    You gotta give him a lifetime of devotion.
    And second that emotion.”

    But Smokey did say…
    “Now they’re some sad things known to man
    But ain’t too much sadder than
    The tears of a clown when there’s no one left around”

    Colonel Haiku (6b7575)

  30. And they’ll probably go to Bullwort, so all’s well that ends well.

    Colonel Haiku (6b7575)

  31. I’m actually surprised it took Ross and Ruth this long to leave Redstate….it’s not a place that is especially civil or hospitable to anyone skeptical of Trump or the direction that the pro-Trump-media is taking the GOP. I guess the RS business model is to create an echo chamber….where people can feed (gorge upon?) their confirmation bias. Happyfeet would be a God there.

    I think right-leaning blog sites need to assess whether the Trump direction is the right path for the GOP…or whether the party and conservatives need to actively plan for post-Trump. This requires being open to both the good and bad of what is Trump….and how that good or bad is effecting how the country does politics. Redstate does not appear interested in being part of that dialogue. That’s fine…but it does mean selling the appeal of an echo chamber….

    AJ_Liberty (3c84de)

  32. 34. When Trump is gone and what is left of the conservative movement is in shambles, Trump voters will still be convincing themselves that they did right by not allowing Hillary back in the Oval Office.

    Gryph (5efbad)

  33. The Purge is also happening at the Washington Examiner. It’s all about loyalty to a certain con man, not to a set of principles. The Examiner is owned by Clarity Media Group, the same outfit that murdered the Weekly Standard.

    Paul Montagu (27e440)

  34. It’s all about loyalty to a certain con man

    That’s no way to talk about GOD’S CHOSEN.

    Dave (1bb933)

  35. “the same outfit that murdered the Weekly Standard.”

    Readership and cruise ships couldn’t sustain them. It wasn’t murder, not even voluntary manslaughter.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  36. Back to the attic; the odor from Goldwater’s trunk is a tad stale.

    DCSCA (797bc0)

  37. I used to read redstate and then their editorial viewpoint became too…. limited. Also, I hate the clickbaity and juvenile headlines.

    Nic (896fdf)

  38. Readership and cruise ships couldn’t sustain them. It wasn’t murder, not even voluntary manslaughter.

    Clarity refused to sell the Weekly Standard, choosing to kill it instead.

    Paul Montagu (27e440)

  39. Its my understanding that of the group let go last year, Wright was the only one putting up any type of numbers (hers of the post mill type). A lot of dead weight was cut loose.

    Shorty Gitlowe (4e09b7)

  40. i like Mr. strieff the best but it got so weird over there you could easily pull up some petulant whinging nevertrump if you clicked on somebody else

    their brand proposition made no sense cause nevertrump lurvs democrats for example their abortion friend in Alabama, and democrats are blue not red blue not red blue not red

    so the whole url stopped making any sense and i deleted it from my book of marks

    but now it’s back, at least for now

    happyfeet (28a91b)

  41. I don’t suffer from TDS – Trump is a disgustingly horrible person but we don’t judge somebody’s job performance by their personality – but I do suffer from TSDS, Trump Supporter Derangement Syndrome. It’s bad enough that Trump, like most politicians suffers from a Messiah complex and a smartest-man-in-the-room disorder, you don’t have to feed his ego by worshipping him. There’s a whole long list of mistakes and misjudgments and bad policy decisions he’s made as President, to pretend Little Baby Jesus is up in Heaven weeping bitter tears knowing that His Father created a more perfect human being in the form of Donald J Trump than even He Himself is just such foolish nonsense.

    Jerryskids (702a61)

  42. “Clarity refused to sell the Weekly Standard, choosing to kill it instead.”

    You can always depend on David “Home Depot” Brooks and the NYT to tell their version of teh Truth.

    Colonel Haiku (6b7575)

  43. Its my understanding that of the group let go last year, Wright was the only one putting up any type of numbers (hers of the post mill type). A lot of dead weight was cut loose.

    False. I was putting up numbers; the only reason I was not one of the top traffic draws was because I did 1-2 posts a day, not several. But I was doing just fine.

    Patterico (115b1f)

  44. The hate for trump is great by the media. I would think people would love to have these talented writers who have street cred inbringing trump down.

    mg (7b60a1)

  45. You can always depend on David “Home Depot” Brooks and the NYT to tell their version of teh Truth.

    Ad hom in lieu of real argument noted. Podhoretz wasn’t the only one who reported that Clarity chose to kill it than sell it.

    Paul Montagu (27e440)

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