Friday, October 05, 2012

Guest Post by Bill Eccles

I posted a link to an article called A Guide to the Obama Administration’s Five Major Scandals for Mainstream Media Dummies on Facebook. Yes, I know, I broke the Office Christmas Party Protocol, and I wasn’t sure exactly sure at the time why I posted it.

I finally put my finger on it: As much as I believe this article does indeed portray an unfortunate level of comfort this administration has with being a corruptocracy, I believe it’s as much—if not more so—an indictment of the media for its consistent failure to investigate with unbiased zeal the misdeeds and missteps of our political establishment. We can no longer rely on the press to investigate the very government which it is supposed to protect us from.

The media used to be equal-opportunity haters. All politicians hated them because they were relentless in their pursuit of the deepest, darkest misdeeds of all politicians. They did this task out of a sense of journalistic responsibility, of integrity, and of a need to sell papers.

No more, however, is the free press independent, nor is the independent press free.

To the first half of the preceding statement, and by far the worst part of this problem, the media is letting their work be done by the very branches of the government from which they are supposed to be independent. When the President’s staff gets veto power over statements the press is planning on publishing, the press cannot possibly be the objective fourth estate we need.1

And independence means not only independence from the government, but independence to have opinions and findings different from others. The mere existence of the JournoList and the collusion thereon is indicative that this level of independence is dead.2 News organizations which do not toe the party line are called out as radical regardless of how much truth there may be to their stories.

I suppose that the guarantees in the Bill of Rights give the press the right to collude and write the narrative and to spin the data however they like. But the result is that Americans don’t trust the media to do their job at all, as discovered in a recent Gallup poll.3

I’m not alone in this concern. Democratic pollster Patrick Caddell said, “We designed a constitutional system with many checks and balances. The one that had no checks and balances was the press, and that was done under an implicit understanding that, somehow, the press would protect the people from the government and the power by telling—somehow allowing—people to have the truth. That is being abrogated as we speak, and has been for some time.”4

Quite frankly, I do not understand, given the death of the American newspaper, why journalists are so unwilling to investigate this administration. Controversy sells papers, after all. Maybe it’s cost cutting. Maybe it’s a group decision to support this president because there’s something in it for the media that I just can’t figure out—other than outright access, that is. On that subject, The Guardian says “It is pure ‘access journalism’: these reporters are given scoops in exchange for their wholly unjustified promise to allow government officials to propagandize the citizenry without accountability (that is, from behind the protective shield of anonymity). By necessity, their journalistic storytelling is shaped by the perspective of these official sources.”5 If people on the other side of the pond can see what’s going on so very clearly, I can’t help but wonder why we’re so blind to what’s happening within our own borders.

Finally, when the polls are intentionally skewed to reflect the beliefs and leanings of their publishers, as have past media polls6, I believe all the journalistic integrity which decades’ worth of reporters before them have gone to the ends of the earth to build is thoroughly and completely dead.

Given the media’s inability to provide any checks or balances on this administration, I would much rather there be a different administration in place, one in which the media are actively committed and doggedly interested in exposing the government’s misdeeds. That’s a media I could respect.
_______________________________________________________
1http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/16/us/politics/latest-word-on-the-campaign-trail-i-take-it-back.html?_r=0
2http://dailycaller.com/2010/07/20/documents-show-media-plotting-to-kill-stories-about-rev-jeremiah-wright/
3http://www.gallup.com/poll/157589/distrust-media-hits-new-high.aspx
4http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2012/09/29/mainstream-media-threatening-our-country-future/
5http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/jun/08/obama-administration-making-us-media-its-mouthpiece
6http://spectator.org/archives/2012/09/25/how-carter-beat-reagan/print
Tags:
Conservative,
Election 2012

(You can read Bill daily at Bill's Words)

59 comments:

Bram said...

It is scary how bad the mainstream media has become. I cannot turn on NBC, ABC, etc... without viewing the whole thing as an opinion column that I probably won't agree with. I simply assume at this point that they will twist the facts, hide key details and omit facts to further a leftist agenda.

Pat Caddell

Bram said...

Pat Caddell text that turns into the link

Bram said...

Today the media is reporting the "good news" of the completely bogus unemployment numbers.

They say that the economy added 114,000 new jobs to drop the unemployment rate from 8.2% to 7.8%.

Sounds great if you ignore the 125,000/month in population growth and pretend nobody left their jobs.

I'll bet anyone $100 that the number is "unexpectedly" revised to over 8% right after the election.

Nate said...

This isn't a liberal issue -- this is a general media issue. On one hand we've got a set of bloggers that magnify the most ridiculous accusations (Birthers are the consumate example, 2000 election is another), on the other hand we've got a media that seems to care more about American Idol than the functioning of our government.

ALa said...

Nate: I would like to know from you what issues (or non-issues) do you think Lefty Bloggers have blown up...

Nate said...

The Haliburton-Cheney-Iraq connection is an example. In the '12 election Bain Capital's abortion provider connection was reported by blogs, as was their alleged corporate raiding. Very little of this has gotten any real traction in the MSM.

Bram said...

Haliburton? We heard about it, nothing seemed particularly incriminating or wasteful.

These days Jon Corzine is a fee man for some reason. And we hear about another Solyndra, run by a Democratic bundler, going bankrupt weekly.

Zelda said...

When bloggers from the right or left (and it's usually from the right) scoop the mainstream press for the big stories, then you know there is a very big problem with professional journalism. The internet is problematic in the way free speech can be problematic. But overall it's a good thing. Someone needs to force the mainstream press from their relentless progressive narrative.

Journalists have forgotten to be the cynical shits they are supposed to be. They've put themselves on a pedestal and think they have some high holy calling to influence people instead of just report.

Jpck20 said...

It's easy: Brobama is too black to fail.

This is why all the liberal media refuse to investigate his shitty ass administration.

Hoss said...

Is the MSM bias even worth mentioning anymore. Evan Thomas, a leftist from Newsweek (redundant, I know), said that the MSM's institutional leftism was worth five points to the democrat party. This election cycle it's worth more. Could you imagine a Republican president with gas at $4 a gallon, unemployment at 8%, food prices skyrocketing, and the general malaise of the economy: you'd be hearing about it 50 times a day on the MSM. It's not even debatable. Journalism is a joke as a profession.

Rickvid in Seattle said...

Bill, to borrow from the great film, "My Cousin Vinny,"

Judge Haller: That is a lucid, intelligent, well thought-out column.
Vinny Gambini: Thank you, Your Honor.
Judge Haller: Overruled.

Do you mistake the media for Diogenes? Media, from ancient troubadours to e-media, have never been unbiased. We used to refer to an "editorial slant." That was okay, as long as the medium was clear about it's slant. You, as a consumer, would read or listen to a wide array of input and derive conclusions from it. Today, Fox leans conservative, MSNBC liberal. If I understand that, I can balance them in my own manner. Papers savaged Washington, Adams, and Jefferson horridly. Lie upon lie. But others supported them as disgustingly. So it has ever been.

My loathing is as much with the populace who think that all media are truthful, except the ones they "don't like," as much as with the media who put forth this lie that they are neutral conveyors of reality.

Hannity is an opinion commenter with known slant. Matthews is not a real journalist, but he plays one on MSNBC. Anyone who believes he is a journalist and not a slanted commenter is a twit. It is his lying about it that rankles.

The powers that be would do well to remember that some media are conservative, some liberal. But all media are treacherous.

CrabbyOldMan said...

TEST

Rickvid in Seattle said...

COM said:

TESTY

There, fixed it for ya COM...

CrabbyOldMan said...


Rickvid in Seattle:
Actually I did intend "TEST" just to see if I was using this different format correctly.
I have been gone (on vacation) for a week.
I managed to watch the debate. I have to say that it really improved my mood.
However, the leftards are like the parents of the ugly girl in the beauty contest: They will always believe that the homely little thing really won. It was just that the judges were unfair.

Zelda said...

Well yeah, COM, but no one buys it. :-)

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