Day By Day© by Chris Muir.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Regarding the media

Those of you familiar with my blog know that I have no respect for the mainstream media. I was thinking today that I ought to clarify something. I do not think the media should be censored or controlled in any way. Certainly, I'd like to see less one-sided reporting and, in the case of Paul Krugman, fewer mistakes and more apologies for the many mistakes he makes. But I digress. What I really want to see from the MSM is the admission that it is not the calm, impartial observer of events that it purports to be but, in fact, a partisan engine. For example, think of the People's Weekly World, the official newspaper of the American Communist Party. To its credit, this paper does not try to fool its readers into believing that it's an unbiased observer on the political scene. It proudly announces its affiliation, allowing anyone who reads it either to take it at its word or to run its content through a mental filter. In England, everyone knows the heirarchy. For umpteen years, the Daily Telegraph has been the "conservative" paper, The Times the less conservative paper (much less conservative than it used to be), and the Guardian the Leftist, Labour related paper. These papers are clear about their political affiliations and, again, readers can accept their content unreservedly or with a grain of salt. It's the same in France, where the major newspapers are specifically identified by their political orientation. Only in America do the major news organs, the New York Times, the Post, the San Francisco Chronicle, ABC, NBC, CBS, MSNBC, Time Magazine, AP(oo), Newsweak, Al-Reuters, etc. (I'll leave you to find your own links for all of these) pretend that they have no affiliation but, instead, that they report some rarified, pure news, unblemished by human bias. This is not merely disingenuous, it's downright dishonest. I'd be infinitely less hostile to the MSM if its various outlets would make the straightforward acknowledgment that they, in fact, do have specific places on the political spectrum, rather than pretending that their news is untouchable because it's "99-44/100% Pure®." If these biases were acknowledged in straightforward fashion, I'd be much less stressed about an interlinked series of commercial institutions that I believe is misleading many in the American public. Certainly it would be easier to understand the animus directing the attacks on the current administration (which the papers currently present as "news" rather than editorials), and to work to separate wheat from chaff in these unending attacks.