Rolling Stone misses the point in piece twisting senator’s words

June 15, 2022

By Tim Worstall

Rolling Stone seems to be missing the point of politics here – first, gain power, then decide what to do with it. Of course, it could just be trying to be charmingly naïve, but we think that unlikely in American journalism somehow.

The piece is headlined, “GOP Senator Says Political Power Is More Important Than Gun Safety.”

“‘I think we’re more interested in the red wave than we are in red flags, quite honestly,’ Sen. Kevin Cramer said on Tuesday,” according to the piece.

A positive way to interpret Cramer’s statement is that Republican voters – that red wave – aren’t so interested in bans on gun buying – those red flags. Since a politician’s duty is to his voters this seems markedly democratic to us – even if not quite Democrat. We might also point out that the validation of a political policy is that you get elected for touting it – thus concern for what the electorate might vote for seems to us to be rather the point of the process itself.

Now, obviously, Rolling Stone thinks there should be more gun control than there actually is. Large numbers of voters don’t think that way, but some do. We don’t, in fact, know how many think which way on this as with so many other subjects. So, what we do is every now and then we have like a popularity contest. Folk stand up and say all sorts of stuff. Then we out here, we decide whose we like and we pick them to do those things.

It’s a fun system, we call it democracy. As opposed, say, to a system whereby social science majors writing for music magazines decide what the country should do.

Rolling Stone has fallen somewhat from those glory days of being tastemakers for the nation but it’s still a significant media outlet. It might be number 12 in the rankings for music outlets these days but only in the 700s for media as a whole. They get some 24 million visits a month which makes them just important enough to critique.

The point to make here being that a Republican Senator just said that he was probably more interested in what his voters had to say than he was in any specific and current legislative proposal. Quite how anyone – even a music magazine – thinks democracy works if it’s not that way is one of those mysteries of the current age.


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