Election 2016

Watch: Bernie Sanders Blasts the Corporate Media for Failing to Talk About Real Issues

Sanders talks with Cenk Uygur of The Young Turks on the role media plays in preventing change.
Bernie Sanders is in Los Angeles this week, and what better place to discuss the corporate media and its failings than the entertainment capital of the world. Last night, Sanders took a break from campaigning to join Cenk Uygur, host of The Young Turks for a conversation about how major networks fail to inform the public. 
 
“What you have is a corporate media which has conflicts of interest,” Sanders told Uygur. “Comcast owns NBC and by definition has conflicts of interest. Comcast owns NBC [and] co-owns Disney. They’re paying their workers in Disney World $8 or $9 an hour, bringing in people from around the world to replace American workers. These are important issues that they don’t want to discuss.”
 
Today, six media conglomerates control almost all forms of mainstream American media, which means only a small handful of people are determining the content. Bernie Sanders believes that this violates our democracy because the public deserves divergent sources of information. Just look at how the media portrays Bernie Sanders. When CNN talks about a poll in which Bernie outperforms Hillary, they don’t even show the poll. They simply ask Clinton, in a sit-down town hall format, if she “buys that.”
 
“The model for media now is six-second sound bites and an unwillingness to talk about real issues in a serious way. [For example] the networks never talk about climate change. Does it have to do with the fact that they have a lot of coal and oil companies advertising? I think it does. Do you ever hear really serious discussions on why the middle class is disappearing? Healthcare? Have you seen Michael Moore’s movie Sicko?” Sanders asked.
 

Sanders uses Moore's documentary to talk to young people about universal healthcare.
 
“They don’t even know that we are the only major country without healthcare for all. They don’t know that in Germany or Scandinavia college is free. Media is not telling them that,” Sanders said. Media, and the companies funding the media, want most things to stay the same. “If you talk about the real issues and people get educated on the real issues, you know what happens next?” Sanders asked. “They actually may want to bring about change.”
 
Watch:

Alexandra Rosenmann is an AlterNet associate editor. Follow her @alexpreditor.

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