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MEDIA BIAS  

   Once upon a time I had the view that if one was interested in news it was simply a matter to read the newspaper or turn on the TV. Sadly, I was forced to discard this notion long ago when I realized this is NOT the way to get the news. The filter of the media can be so strong that you can actually come away with an understanding that is exactly the opposite of what you would believe if you had all the facts.

 

See also 'Media Freedom'

See also 'John Kerry on Blogs'

 

 

2/1/10 (By Travis)

Poll: Fox most trusted name in news

1/27/09 Politico

Percent Trust:

Fox 49%

CNN 39%

CBS 32%

NBC 31%

 

Fox also had the lowest level of distrust: 37%.

 

Stats guaranteed to rile our friends on the left. :)

 

 

Examples of Media Bias

 

Posted 1/29/06

Please Do Your Job

1/27/06 Cafe Hayek An excellent analysis of a rather typical 'study' reported on by the media. If you're in the mood, feel free to contrast this with a similar debunking of 'International Poverty Rates', a debunking of United States 'horrible' Infant Mortality rate, and an attack on the liberal 'Urban Institute'.

 

Posted 1/13/05

Enforcement of mine safety seen slipping under Bush

1/6/06 Knight Ridder Newspaper (Self Explanatory; FYI this story ran following a week of constant and dramatic coverage of 12 Pennsylvania miners who were trapped and died)

 

 

Posted 8/20/05

Added to 'media bias'

Editors Ponder How to Present a Broad Picture of Iraq

8/15/05 New York Times I am really surprised the NYT wrote an article like this. Basically, most daily/local newspapers rely on the Associated Press for reports on Iraq and are tired of the bias of the mainstream media.     

    Some editors expressed concern that a kind of bunker mentality was preventing reporters in Iraq from getting out and explaining the bigger picture beyond the daily death tolls.

    "The bottom-line question was, people wanted to know if we're making progress in Iraq," Ms. Goudreau said, and the A.P. articles were not helping to answer that question.

    "Other editors said they get calls from readers who are hearing stories from returning troops of the good things they have accomplished while there, and readers find that at odds with the generally gloomy portrayal in the papers of what's going on in Iraq," he said.

    Mr. Silverman said the editors were asking for help in making sense of the situation. "I was glad to have that discussion with the editors because they have to deal with the perception that the media is emphasizing the negative," he said.

    Perception?

 

 

 

Posted 7/13/05 

An example of media bias. Added to 'media bias'.  

Will The Stone Wall Work

7/12/05 Washington Post

Karl Rove, Whistle Blower

7/13/05 Wall Street Journal Editorial

See, these other news articles for more of this. 

Draw your own conclusions. :)

 

 

 

 

(Posted 6/14/05)

Useful Idiot Alert(s):

UW professor holds North Korea Talks (and media bias alert)

6/12/05 Seattle Times

Camera of Sean Penn, Journalist, Confiscated in Iran

6/12/05 The Editor and Publisher

 

 

 

Alaskans Wary of Vote on Oil Drilling (posted 3/17/05)

Alaskans Issue Wary Response to Senate Vote on Oil Drilling at Arctic National Wildlife Refuge

3/17/05 Associated Press/ABC news. Most media bias is done covertly, by omission or distortion. This story is just about an outright lie. The impression given is that the natives are being exploited and/or have an unfavorable view of the recent Senate vote. The exact opposite, of course, is true. The natives and all Alaskans were being exploited by the Democrats in the Senate and the environmentalists across the country. This story says: The tiny north coast town of Kaktovik officially supports responsible development of oil and gas. But many reacted warily to the Senate vote to allow drilling in their back yard. <..> Mayor Lon Sonsalla said just about everyone has concerns about changes that could accompany any work in the 1.5 million-acre stretch, where billions of barrels of crude oil are believed to rest beneath the tundra. First, the story gives the impression that 1.5 million-acres are going to be drilled on. ANWAR is 19 million-acres and only a small percentage of the 1.5 million-acre costal area will be affected. Secondly, contrast the above Associated Press rot with actual opinion polls:

Seventy-five percent of Alaskans told a February 2000 Dittman research survey that they wanted to open up the refuge for drilling, with only 23 percent opposed.

A 1995 Dittman survey yielded similar results, with 75 percent of Alaskans saying they backed ANWR drilling, and just 19 percent opposed.

In the Inupiat Eskimo villages near ANWR, support is even higher. A January 2000 survey in the village of Kaktovik found that 78 percent of residents back more energy exploration in their own backyard. Only 9 percent were opposed.

In 1995, the Alaska Federation of Natives, which represents 80,000 Eskimos, adopted a resolution supporting ANWR drilling, calling it a “critically important economic opportunity for Alaska natives.”

    More evidence comes from a previous post of mine (which in fact first alerted me that this AP story was fishy):

Casting a Cold Eye on Arctic Oil
9/10/03 New York Times - Nicolas Kristof goes to Alaska to investigate ANWAR (Alaska National Wildlife Refuge) and offer his opinion on the Bush administration's proposal to open it to energy exploration (aka - oil drilling). A vast majority of Alaskans, both Democrats and Republicans, support the plan. Of course, Kristof opposes the drilling, but what is most interesting, besides the fact that only 7% of ANWAR would be open to drilling (and perhaps only a small percentage of this 'spoiled' by the drilling), is this statement in his story: It's also only fair to give special weight to the views of the only people who live in the coastal plain: the Inupiat Eskimos, who overwhelmingly favor drilling (they are poor now, and oil could make them millionaires). One of the Eskimos, Bert Akootchook, angrily told me that if environmentalists were so anxious about the Arctic, they should come here and clean up the petroleum that naturally seeps to the surface of the tundra. (all emphasis mine!)

   One final comment on this is from this story from Newsday: Interior Secretary Gale Norton said:

"This energy production would generate billions of dollars in revenue for the federal Treasury as well as the state of Alaska," she said.

    Why should the Federal Treasury get billions of dollars?

 

 

 

Living on a dollar and a prayer
BBC 1/18/05 - Amazing story on the poverty in Zambia. They interview the finance minister who says,
In most of our Zambian communities, particularly in rural areas, people do not pay for water, lighting, housing and energy so it is true that many of them live on less than $1 a day. Sounds like the Pine Ridge Indian reservation in this country! An organization then talks about food baskets they give to the population. Despite the obvious socialization of Zambia the BBC says (of the finance minister): He conceded that privatisation had brought some poverty, but felt we were making too much of an issue of living on less than a dollar a day. Privatization? 'Conceded' sounds like the BBC got him to grudgingly admit the truth - which is the opposite of the real truth! The worst part is the 'victim hood' and condescension the BBC paints the local population with. Juggling this meagre income then becomes Patricia's headache - Dominic just hands the money to her: "When I get that money I just get confused." It seems to me that poverty in Zambia is caused by high taxes, used to support Socialistic programs that discourage work and foreign investment and impoverish the population. How Zambia might get out of poverty can be viewed here. The BBC description of Zambia is a disgrace and works only to further impoverish that country.

Bush Plans Sharp Cuts in HUD Community Efforts
Washington Post 1/15/2005 - This reporter quotes advocacy groups who imply that these cuts are going to be made for tax cuts, a mission to Mars and other presidential priorities. (my emphasis) Nowhere will you read of the harm that these housing units have done to the poorest people and to our society. HUD should be eliminated and this reporter should be educated.

Early anti-Bush demos fizzle in Canada   

Channel News Asia 11/30/04 - Hopes for early mass protests in the streets of Ottawa on the eve of Tuesday's visit by US President George W. Bush fizzled out, as journalists outnumbered demonstrators. Who was hoping? The journalists? :)

 

'Pristine' Amazonian rainforests are changing and Massive growth of ecotourism worries biologists New Scientist March 2004

    Two 'doom and gloom' articles that show how science can be skewered just like the news. In the first story the focus is on how certain trees in the Amazon basin may be growing faster due to high levels of CO2 in the air. Despite the negativity sown throughout the article, there is no mention of the possibility that faster growing plant life might aid in keeping CO2 levels more stable! The book Oxygen by Nick Lane contains references to experiments resulting in faster/slower plant growth by varying atmospheric conditions. Obviously more research needs to be done, but this knee jerk negativity is puzzling. The second article is the most outrageous. What has helped the cause of conservationism more then ecotourism? The headline of this article should read 'Massive growth of ecotourism makes biologists euphoric'. Giving people a profit in something is the best way to motivate them to preserve it. The New Scientist finishes the article by quoting a scientist "The animals' welfare should be paramount because without them there will be no ecotourism." It is probably more accurate to say that without ecotourism there will be no animals! (in the future)

 

Our Hungry World London Evening Standard 11/15/04

    Details a rock concert raising money for to feed the hungry. Emphasizes the monetary aspect and physical presence of food, when hunger is not caused by lack of either of these. In the same sense, poor health care is not a result of a lack of doctors or medicine. In the whole article it is not mentioned that the political structure of the governments where starvation is occurring is solely responsible for the starvation. Giving these governments food and money (or distribution power) may, if done incorrectly, actually exacerbate the problems by putting even more power into the hands of the very authorities who are responsible for the starvation of their people. For example, North Korea continues to receive over 500,000 tons of food aid per year even though the country has announced that it has nuclear weapons. For a look at the mindset of those who perpetuate these horrific regimes read this drivel by Food First (a non profit). The left leaning Guardian inadvertently offers a better perspective.

 

G.O.P. to the Poor: Don't Vote - New York Times 10/30/04

    I know this is an editorial, so opinion is allowed, but this is a great illustration of the thinking process at the New York Times Editorial Board. This is a reaction to this story: Senators want end to voter drives at housing projects. The Times is also upset that Native American  health clinics (Federally Funded) have suspended voter registrations. The Times just doesn't understand why everyone else across America has to register the normal way, through their county voting centers, while Democratic leaning voters in public housing and Indian reservations need to have Federal money spent on them to make sure they can vote. 

    They then use the ridiculous example of military bases assisting soldiers in registering to vote. Military bases are often located overseas, far away from a soldiers home county. In Iraq and Afghanistan it was often difficult to get them the ballots they requested. Soldiers are putting their lives on the line for our country, we should make it as easy as possible for them to vote if they desire. As they attempt to bring democracy to foreign countries, it can't hurt if they have an appreciation for and a familiarity with, voting. Also, we don't even know what Military bases spend on voting or what special measures they take - the Times doesn't tell us. Lastly, 26 out of the 28 poorest states in the country went for President Bush. And the Times says the GOP doesn't want the poor to vote?!? The poor want to become prosperous! 97 of the fastest 100 growing counties went for President Bush.

 

Latin America Leans Further to the Left 

Reuters 11/1/04 - ...crisis-weary voters tired of decades of U.S-backed market reforms warmed to pragmatic platforms of economic growth with better distribution of wealth. (emphasis mine) Despite the fact that socialistic policies generally only impoverish countries, these reporters assume that it gives a better distribution of wealth. They suggest socialistic polices are 'pragmatic' and manage to portray the US in a negative light. Interestingly, they then contradict themselves further in their story: In the last decade, free market policies opening up the countries to foreign investment often ended in economic disaster, particularly in Argentina and Uruguay, once rich farming nations where millions now do not have enough to eat. [no source given for this statement] But many of these nations, all growing at a healthy clip these days, cannot afford to abandon fiscal austerity and lose investor confidence. Their debt burdens are too big and their economies depend heavily on foreign investment. So which is it? Are people starving or did the market reforms bring prosperity? Debt has nothing to do with market-reforms. 

 

Kerry says he wouldn't have Ousted Saddam    Associated Press (exact story repeated in 58 newspapers) 9/20/2004
Kerry Questions Bush's judgment on Iraq          Associated Press (exact story splashed on 14 newspapers) 9/20/04

Two different Associated Press Reporters, Nedra Pickler and Ron Forneir, cover John Kerry's speech on Iraq quite differently...

 

Texan has a history of attacks on Bush        Houston Chronicle 9/17/2004
Suspected CBS source is well Regarded Texan Washington Post 9/17/2004

The same story breaking in two different papers. Shouldn't they be similar?

 

Testimony of Chairman Alan Greenspan             Transcript of Testimony 9/8/2004
Greenspan Says Economy Regained Traction     Washington Post 9/8/2004

Is there anything in Greenspan's testimony that relates to, "August retail sales, for example, were disappointing for many chains, such as Wal-Mart, that market primarily to middle income households, while upscale stores such as Neiman Marcus thrived. Greenspan didn't mention auto sales, but..." Greenspan doesn't mention any of this. This reporter doesn't just add Democratic talking points into this story, but tries to make it appear like they are coming from Greenspan! Unbelievable!

 

Schwarzenegger spends more on Payroll      

Associated Press 6/29/2004 - This AP story is a complete joke. First, this reporter quotes a liberal organization, "Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights", without saying it is liberal. Then after documenting instances where Schwarzenegger staffers are making more money, this reporter slips in that Schwarzenegger's office is actually requesting the same amount of funding as under the previous governor. The story ends with the fact that Schwarzenegger's office is employing 154 people as opposed to the 164-194 under Davis. So the headline of this story is completely false! Schwarzenegger has a smaller group of more highly paid people, which is probably more effective and efficient, despite that this whole story is written as a criticism!

 

Iraq Overshadows Memorial Day                        

BBC 5/31/2004 - The British Broadcasting Corporation gives a cheery report on the President's memorial day speech. They make sure to describe the Secretary of Defense as "beleaguered", report that "Mr Bush is facing declining public support for the war in Iraq.", report that "Mr Bush has been criticised for not attending any funerals of the war dead.", add in (again for unknown reasons) that Mr. Bush is going to Italy in a few days where there are protesters, "..threatening anti-war demonstrations over Iraq." and ends with the relevant quote: "..some Italians are asking whether America's armed forces should still be classified as liberators."

 

 

 

Articles on Media Bias

Republican Chairmen puts pressure on PBS, alleges bias (Posted 5/7/05)

5/2/05 NYtimes hit piece on attempts to 'reform' PBS's blatant bias. Nowhere was this more obvious then in a PBS piece shown just a few days before the election comparing the careers of Bush and Kerry. I watched this piece and was appalled at the biases and omissions seen throughout it. I wasn't the only one, here are some comments viewers wrote PBS afterwards. 

    But this idea of 'reforming' PBS is a unfortunate, but typical, reaction of present day Republican politicians to the bloated and failing government programs they inherit. Why should it be reformed? What is the point of PBS? Though PBS's ratings have stabilized lately after several years of decline, the network has faced criticism that much of its programming - shows like "Antiques Roadshow" and "Masterpiece Theater" - is little different from what can be found on cable television. Though a huge bequest to National Public Radio from the estate of Joan Kroc, widow of the founder of McDonald's, has furthered the independence of public radio, corporate support and state financing for public television have slipped in recent years, making the nearly $400 million in federal money annually funneled through the corporation increasingly important.

    We run into another pattern, 'free' government programs competing with the private sector. NPR is just as biased as PBS, if not more so, and receives millions of taxpayers money per year. For what purpose? Why are we spending $400 million on poor quality and biased PBS? Abolish it! 

Thomas Jefferson said, "To compel a man to furnish contributions of money for the propagation of opinions which he disbelieves and abhors, is sinful and tyrannical."

Family's TV Clout in Bush's Corner / Sinclair Orders 62 Stations to Air Anti-Kerry Film
Washington Post - A privately owned media company 'orders' it's stations? Who describes programming as being 'ordered'? This is incredibly ironic because I just watched a Frontline presentation called 'the Choice 2004' on taxpayer funded PBS, which was an incredibly biased documentary on the two candidates. Check out the comments section and you can see I was not alone. But, when a private company tries to counteract what Government is forcing us to watch, it is attacked by Democrats across the country. In fact, Chad Clanton, described as a 'senior Kerry campaign advisor' appeared to threaten the media company during an interview on Fox saying, "They [Sinclair] better hope that we're not elected."

NPR for DNC
Washington Times - Despite a policy against political giving, Six NPR employees gave a total of $4,383
to Democratic candidates in the 2003-2004 election cycle. None were found to have given to Republicans. 

Republicans Outnumbered in Academia, Studies Find / Conservatives push for a 'bill of rights'
New York Times - Liberals outnumber Conservatives 7 to 1 and for the first time Universities were the largest direct donors to a Presidential candidate (Kerry). Remember this next time the media trumpets new 'academic findings' or interview 'academic experts'.

Slanted ABC takes the heat
New York Post - ABC news political director Marc Halperin writes a memo to his reporting staff more or less instructing them to skewer Bush.  

UK anti-Bush letters spark outrage
Reuters - The Guardian newspaper, a leftist paper in England starts a letter writing campaign to Clark County Ohio. 14,000 of it's readers sign up to write letters on behalf of Democratic Presidential nominee John Kerry. Of course, they keep their reporting separate from the opinion of their management and reporters...

Rather Spoke at a Democratic Fund Raiser
Washington Post - CBS news anchor Dan Rather speaks at a $1000 dollar/head fundraiser for Texas Democrats.

Some of Kerry's biggest fans are in the press
Los Angeles Times - Jeff Jacboy writes an opinion piece detailing how media bias will effect the campaign. Notice the statements the various 'media figures' made after Kerry's convention and what is now the conventional wisdom.

Fox News slanted? Take a look at CNN
New York Daily - Bill O'Reilly weighs in on the lack of outrage now that CNN 'analysts' James Carville and Paul Begala
have signed on with the Kerry campaign.

CBS, NBC cash goes to Democrats / while look at Fox sees more balanced giving
World Net Daily - A must read article showing that nearly all of the employees of national news organizations give exclusively to liberal candidates. This article needs to be clarified more by WND. 

 

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