For the past decade or so, I have followed and admired the work of journalist John Solomon, the CEO and Editor-in-Chief of the digital media site Just The News. I have tracked his byline across the many media outlets where he has worked: The Associated Press, The Washington Post, The Washington Times, and The Hill, to name a few. His 30-year career of award-winning investigative journalism and rock-solid reporting is well known, and one of the reasons he chose to launch out on his own was a desire to continue to do this work and put it out into the world.
Solomon is also an author, and he has partnered with the conservative book publisher Brave Books for a children’s book, titled: “Hidden Headlines,” about media censorship and the importance of the First Amendment. I am also an admirer of the work Brave Books does, so as I told my followers on Twitter, it was a fun day of being a fan girl while also doing my work. You take the wins where you can get them.
Solomon’s Wikipedia entry is quite laughable, reading along the lines of “how the mighty have fallen.” It is exactly what you would expect from the site, but a disservice (if not disrespect) to a gumshoe investigator who simply wanted to continue that work which helped him receive the awards, the accolades, and the prolific bylines. In response to his career left turn, Solomon said,
“Well, I think it became increasingly clear. Maybe starting in 2007, certainly by the end of 2019, a 12-year journey that the way I had practiced journalism in the past, at the beginning of my career, when I won all those awards [no longer existed]. I did the project for 60 Minutes. I was the lead investigative reporter for the Washington Post, worked at the AP for 20 years, I wouldn’t be able to do that anymore. There were narratives that were preset in newsrooms that would not allow certain storylines like Hunter Biden to be published.”
Solomon shared his concerns with his wife, and through her encouragement, Just The News came into being. Solomon discussed this here.
The media-consuming public and journalists have a front-row seat to the ongoing battle to squelch true journalism and further pre-fabricated narratives. With that in mind, it is clear Solomon, as well as Sharyl Attkisson, Glenn Greenwald, and other old-school journalists have made the right move. The recent cancellation of Tucker Carlson‘s show on Fox News is also a reflection of the adversarial legacy media atmosphere. The narrative is all, and anyone who does not conform to it must be silenced, if not destroyed. “Hidden Headlines” seeks to teach children what Solomon learned over his journalism career: that the search for truth is the most important quest, and that truth-tellers need freedom to do that work. Sadly, others in legacy and new media have abandoned truth in their pursuit of money and power, and want to block the truth-teller’s ability to enlighten and inform.
The book follows Hound Dog Seymour Clues, as he seeks to solve the mystery of who blocked the tubes around Starlotte City. This blockage is preventing the Hamster Headlines News from reaching the citizens of Starlotte City. As Clues sniffs out a solution, children get a lesson about honesty and integrity, the importance of free speech, and the evils of intolerance and censorship.
Solomon told me the fun true-life tale about how the book’s storyline came about, and the tremendous response from the parents who hear Solomon read from “Hidden Headlines” at Brave Books’ “Freedom Island Book Tours” being held in libraries across the country. Solomon talked about an eye-opening encounter with a mother in Philadelphia which drove home the importance of the work he is doing with Just The News and with “Hidden Headlines.”
“That moment in Philadelphia felt like an epic moment in my learning experience. There are millions of Americans that know what’s going wrong with this country and their intent on saving it, and that moment is upon us. Are we going to save it? Are we going to fix it? I think the next two years will tell us that answer.”
Despite what has transpired with the legacy media’s collusion with Big Government and Big Tech, the variety and availability of free speech platforms and social media arms, and the drive to keep speaking the truth and informing the public gives Solomon hope for the future of journalism.
“The great era that we live in, the American digital era, which we’ve left the industrial era to the digital era now, is one of the most empowering for people who are content creators. It’s a meritocracy. You will know if the American people like or don’t like your content by whether it rises or falls in the marketplace,” Solomon said.
Of course, censorship is still rampant in Big Tech, despite the exposure of their tactics through the Twitter Files, and the investigations being waged through the House subcommittees.
“Yes, there is censorship—significant, serious censorship—that’s why I wrote the book. But there are so many ways to go around the censorship easily. You see what people like Matt Taibbi and Glenn Greenwald and others have done. They just went on Substack and said, ‘You know what? You can just follow me. I don’t need a legacy media company to validate me. I can reach you directly.’ And I think that’s the most powerful and liberating in our profession. Legacy media companies have put a thumb on the truth that have hijacked the narrative, that have worked with bureaucrats in the intelligence and law enforcement community, and the Big Tech sector. They can’t silence us anymore. We can go out on our own.”
Elon Musk purchased Twitter and is now attempting to right the ship away from censorship and back toward freedom of speech. But we now have Truth Social, Gettr, Rumble, even Mastodon, if you’re so inclined.
“You can just bring up a website yourself like I did in the basement of my home,” Solomon said.
Just The News was started that quickly.
“And before long you will be able to communicate. If you create a good product, it will rise to the top. As Americans, we still believe in the meritocracy of truth. And the more true you are as a journalist, the more likely you are to be read.”
Solomon ended our conversation with how honored he is to be a partner with Brave Books, and how they represent American meritocracy and a commitment to truth.
“They’re an example of that competition. They didn’t cry into the darkness. They shine the light and started something new, like you’ve done. And I’ve done. And they’re doing it for parents and children.
“I’m really honored to be a small part of their story and more importantly, I’m really impressed what they’re trying to do. They’re trying to create a solution.”