The Next Right Project
Last October, Patrick Ruffini wrote a piece for Hugh Hewitt's blog titled Information Gaps on the Right wherein Ruffini reminded us that most news outlets unsurprisingly lean leftward. He pointed out that this is one of the serious disabilities for the conservative viewpoint getting a wider hearing. Ruffini also highlighted the vast sea of paid-for bloggers that lefties like George Soros and the like are floating out there. It all amounts to the left having far longer reach than we do to set the agenda for the national debate.
And it isn't getting any better.
The Left also seems to be developing a lead in powerful feeders mechanisms that do little more than tee up information for other blogs. ThinkProgress provides a valuable service to the left by leveraging a full-time research staff to be the first to report and frame up news stories. Their content is rarely witty and original and isn’t meant to be. It’s just meant to provide context and a prod for others to cover these stories. The research backing also means they do the legwork to connect the dots in ways that bloggers rarely do. If John McCain says something today, they’re all about telling you what he said about the same thing in March, what he said in 2003, what he said in 1999, and so on.
Of course, there are a few places we can go as conservatives to get a more conservative take on the News. There is Michelle Malkin, Powerline blog, and a host of others. Not to mention the great work we do here at Newsbusters and I should remind people to make Newsbusters a daily visit for news on the liberal slant in the media. If you want a site that drives the agenda on that subject (liberal bias in the news) then Newsbusters is the place.
So, the general thought is that we are behind the left in getting our agenda talked about. As Matthew Sheffield of Newsbusters said:
Ruffini's point here is very well-taken and one I've been trying to get a lot of conservative groups to realize: the right is so far behind when it comes to original reporting and research online. Unfortunately, it's been a tough job trying to convince people of the great need we have on the right for focused, targeted blogs.
So, what do we do about it? We HAVE to do something, right?
Well, Ruffini, Soren Dayton, and Jon Henke have teamed up to do just that. With a new project called The Next Right. They intend to fulfill the role of furthering the agenda like so many liberal blogs already do for their side.
It’s no secret that the right operates at a severe disadvantage to the left when it comes to building online political infrastructure. People point to ActBlue and Obama’s massive fundraising advantage, but the problem cuts deeper: netroots activists on the left have built critical mass around an idea that regular people on the Internet can get their hands dirty and remix Democratic politics. They not only raise money. They recruit candidates. They fund full-time investigative journalism to ambush Republicans. They act as a party whip, creating consequences for Democrats who, in their view, don’t act like Democrats. They volunteer and flock to states with key races. The right can build all the tools it wants, but without a narrative and a rallying point for action, it will be for naught.
So, take a quick stop over at the placeholder page for The Next Right at http://thenextright.com/. Sign up for an email notification when they are ready to go live. This is something to keep our eyes on folks. We really need to address our IDD problems.... that would be information deficit disorder!