Something I learned a long time ago came to mind today when contemplating the relationship between politicians and the media. We called it White's Postulation:
"The parameters of any conflict are determined by the opponent with the least interest in morality."
In other words, if the press deceptively edits documentaries about gun-related issues, if a network anchorman blatantly lies about his experiences, if the moderator of a Sunday morning political gab-fest openly advises the president to "destroy" the opposing political party, sooner or later the other side in the conflict is going to begin to behave in a similar, and starkly brutal, manner. This is similar to a battlefield atrocity leading to further atrocities committed by the other side in revenge until the result is what Sherman described as the hell of war.
I suppose that's true when the media become not just dishonest, but trivial. We'll see it reflected in the reaction of the political class.