Anand Ranganathan’s fate at Newslaundry is a living proof of O’Sullivan’s law

Earlier today, scientist and a columnist at Newslaundary, Anand Ranganathan lost his cool. Mr Ranganathan is known for many things including leading a team of scientists who identified a peptide molecule that can effectively prevent the interaction between malaria parasites and receptors found on RBCs thereby preventing the parasites from invading the RBCs and causing the disease. He is also known to maintain his composure under the most terrible circumstances, after all, he has a scientist’s temper. His articles and tweets are researched painstakingly. A man not known for frivolous rants.

Today, however, Anand lost his cool on a contributor at left-leaning website Newslaundry, Meghnad, with good reason. It started when Meghnad posted a tweet with a screenshot of Anand Ranganath’s profile, which showed that Ranganathan had blocked him. He expressed surprise at him being blocked.

Meghnad has since deleted the tweet, hence the screenshot of his tweet for posterity.

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Meghnad then went on to mock with his friends on his getting blocked by Ranganathan and favouriting tweets which mocked, insulted and called Ranganathan names. While Meghnad has the right to do whatever he pleases, Ranganathan, too, having lost his patience with constant name-calling, decided to go ahead and block the negativity coming his way.

But it seems like he had had enough. He tweeted a response as to why he blocked him. Since towards the end of his brutal reply, he has written he may shortly delete the tweet, here is the reply he had originally posted.

Text of tweet posted by scientist and columnist Anand Ranganathan.

While Anand said he’d delete the tweet and maybe he wants to forget and forgive all, we are not going to let it go. Because this is an important lesson for those, who believe in the sham of “neutrality” that some people and organizations profess. Most of such “neutral” people and organizations are either left-leaning or they are on their path to becoming left-leaning. Newslaundary was not leftist to start with, but it went on that path very soon, and now it is just another left-leaning outlet.

It is, therefore, the living proof of O’Sullivan’s law.

The law, coined by British journalist and commentator John O’Sullivan in 1980s, states that “All organizations that are not actually right-wing will over time become left-wing.”

I remember when Madhu Trehan started Newslaundry around 2012, they positioned it as a media critique website. The positioning was perfect. In the aftermath of the Radia tapes controversy, faith in media was at rock bottom and people were looking for new media or alternate media. Many right-wingers supported it too, some I know even subscribed to it – i.e. paid their hard-earned money to these bunch of self-declared media messiahs – as they thought it was a whiff of fresh air in the stale stench of moribund left-leaning mainstream media outlet.

Today the website stinks just like any of those other mainstream media outlets. The media person Newslaundry attacks, is Arnab Goswami because currently, he is anything but a leftist. Example:

News about Arnab on Newslaundry is more than the news about Barkha, Rajdeep and Sagarika combined. Just a glimpse of their bias.

Newslaundry is currently infested with bearded bigoted leftists, who are happy to play second fiddle to the same old establishment media.

So why did it happen? What exactly does O’Sullivan’s law indicate? Why would any organization, unless actually and expressly right-wing, become left-wing over time and never remain neutral?

It is because the way leftists behave. It is because of the tribalism and intolerance of the left.

Leftists, despite claiming to believe in free speech and diversity, are the real fascists who can’t tolerate dissent. Like how students at the Leftist bastion Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) gheraoed and held the vice-chancellor, registrar and other officials hostage? And how a year later, JNU teachers’ association decided to hold a kangaroo court against him? And how an invite to Arvind Gupta, founder-member of “Digital India Foundation”, which is a non-profit trust and think-tank aiming to foster digital inclusion and adoption, was cancelled at JNU because he led Prime Minister Modi’s digital campaign in 2014? It is amusing when they, of all people, talk about freedom of speech and freedom to dissent.

The leftists, for all their talk of tolerance and inclusivity, resorts to shameless tribalism every single time, at every given opportunity. A leftist will always pick another leftist when he has the authority to hire. One leftist student organization member gets a job in media and then one after another card-carrying members join the organization.

On the other hand, a right-winger, who is often economic right-winger too, thinks about objective factors such as what would bring profitability etc. and he could pick up a left-winger for employment. Perhaps, for a traditional “right winger”, for want of a better word, political ideology wouldn’t even factor in when it comes to the task at hand.

And more often than not, the right-winger in a media organisation is mocked at and ridiculed by co-workers. I have experienced it first hand where I was condescendingly called a ‘Bhakt’ for trying to follow up a story which showed Narendra Modi, who was then the Chief Minister of Gujarat and prime ministerial candidate for the BJP back in 2013, in good light. The bullying was so much that now I have turned right-winger enough to root for Modi even in for 2024 elections.

Speaking of bullying, we wonder why Ranganathan is being bullied, especially since he has been more neutral than most self-proclaimed neutral media houses? Could it be because Ranganathan had called out Rajdeep Sardesai’s hypocrisy more than once? Or the one time he caught Vinod Dua lying? Or how he was among the first to point out Hindustan Times’ ‘Hate Tracker’ was biased and shoddy piece of journalism? Or how he exposed Congress’ hypocrisy based on Shashi Tharoor’s tweet? Or even recently how he called out Shashi Tharoor on his ‘Hindu’ claims?

Anand Ranganathan isn’t being hounded because he blocked some pretentious pseudo. He is being hounded because he refused to belong to a leftist tribe. Because he refused to be identified as a “kabaali” of the left Kabaal. He is being hounded because he dares to have a mind of his own. He is being hounded because he dared to choose the truth over the left ideology. Anand Ranganathan being hounded to end of his tether is a result of the left malaise. Is a result of shameless tribalism. Is a result of the pretense of neutrality gone horribly wrong.


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