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The Market for Conservative-Based News
Free Republic | November 14, 2007 | conservatism_IS_compassion

Posted on 11/14/2007 7:44:30 AM PST by conservatism_IS_compassion

Is there any such animal as "conservative-based news?" IMHO there is not. At least, not that goes under the banner of "news."

In the Founding Era, newspapers were different from what we are used to today. Technologically, their inputs were more expensive and their output was very slow and meager. And they were all addressing small, local markets. They were mostly weeklies, and some had no deadline at all - the printer just went to press when he was good and ready. And they did not have telegraphed news.

IOW, the newspapers of the founding era were pretty much like the local freebie advertising weeklies we see today - which don't do national/international newswire stories because the presumption is that the customer has seen all that on TV, heard it on the radio, or seen it on the Internet just as quickly as the local printer saw it.

The linchpin of the difference between the modern journalist and the newspaper printer of the eighteenth century is that the modern journalist has the AP newswire - that is, his stock in trade is what he "magically" knows with amazing 200-year old technology which you do not know until he tells you. But of course the "amazing" newswire cannot hold a candle to the Internet, so the niche of the Associated Press newswire is by now an anachronism.

The AP, founded in 1848 as The New York Associated Press, aggressively monopolized the use of the telegraph to transmit news. And that raised the serious question of whether such a concentration of propaganda power was not dangerous to the republic. . . . now where have I heard that issue before? Oh yes, I remember - it came up when radio transmission was licensed by the FCC. And what was the answer then? Oh yeah - "Don't worry about a thing - we don't have any axe to grind, we are all objective journalists here." Well, it turns out that that argument, such as it is, was precisely what was used to justify the monopolistic Associated Press news service.

The claim of objectivity actually is an assault on the very premise that the public is competent to govern its own affairs and, via the "fairness doctrine" and more recently via "campaign finance reform," on the freedom of speech and the freedom of the press of those not "in the know" by virtue of being privy to the newswire. The claim of objectivity is essentially indistinguishable, as far as I can see, from a claim of wisdom - and arguing from a claim of superior wisdom is the essence of sophistry ("soph" being Greek for "wisdom").

That being the case, we-the-people have the right and the duty to assign the burden of proof for anyone's claim of objectivity squarely on the shoulders of the claimant. That is, we should not be embarrassed by their begging the question but should demand that they prove their case. Even were their claim true, of course, that is an impossible case to prove - essentially an attempt to prove a negative - but that does not suffice as an argument to prove that it is true. It even leaves open the possibility that proof that it is untrue could exist.

Yet how can we know if a fresh report, hot off the wire, is or is not objective? We actually cannot - but there is no necessary reason why that should be the criterion which we choose for judging claimed objectivity. We can wait. We can judge the stories which once were "hot off the wire" in the light of history. We can apply the biblical standard for testing authority:

"When a prophet speaks in the name of the LORD, if the thing does not come about or come true, that is the thing which the LORD has not spoken. The prophet has spoken it presumptuously; you shall not be afraid of him. Deuteronomy 18:22, New American Standard Bible (©1995)

By the standard of the light of history, whole books can be written on the fact that journalism is not objective. See, for example, Slander: Liberal Lies About the American Right by Ann Coulter. Also see, Until Proven Innocent: Political Correctness and the Shameful Injustices of the Duke Lacrosse Rape Case by Stuart Taylor , KC Johnson. Another classic case of journalism run amok is the fraudulent "Killian Memos" promoted by Dan Rather and CBS News and never outted as a blatant fraud by the rest of "objective" journalism, a mountain of damning evidence notwithstanding.

And that last point illustrates how Big Journalism - Associated Press journalism - manipulates the public discourse. The system is quite simple - if some fact is not congenial to the worldview of the journalist, Big Journalism systematically stonewalls that fact and/or raises the standard of proof for that fact to the unattainable level of metaphysical certainty. As long as Big Journalism is able to control the standard of proof, the fatuous conceit that Big Journalism is objective will be unassailable. The fact that it has no basis in fact is irrelevant.

The question is, "Is there any significant venue in which Big Journalism does not control the standard of proof?" There are two possible avenues. First, the Internet has been eroding the business model of the Associated Press. The logical conclusion of which is that Big Journalism no longer has any real niche of information unavailable to the rest of us. The Wizard of Oz is being exposed as a mere mortal behind a curtain. Besides FR and the rest of the Internet, there is Rush and the rest of Talk Radio. And ultimately, the composition of SCOTUS remaining unchanged or improving, there is hope of success in not merely turning back further impositions such as McCain-Feingold and the revival of the Fairness Doctrine but of overturning McCain itself.

In any court case touching on the objectivity of journalism, the issue of the Clarence Thomas - Anita Hill hearing and the objectivity of Justice Thomas could be raised. But to raise that question against Justice Thomas would be to turn the issue on its head. The question is not, or certainly not so much, whether Thomas can be objective seeing that he does not read the newspapers as it is whether any of the other justices can be objective seeing that the do read the newspapers. If SCOTUS can hear the issue fairly, there is no question that the First Amendment not only does not assure that journalism generally and Big Journalism as we know it specifically is objective. The First Amendment forbids the government to require journalism to be objective.

Another question which naturally arises is, "What is the alternative to the status quo of journalism?" The status quo is, as I have pointed out, that journalism is:

There is a classical reaction to the position the Sophist. "You claim to be wise, and presume to denigrate anyone whose supposedly inferior wisdom you can ridicule. But you cannot prove your own wisdom, and your claim is therefore arrogant. I do not claim to be wise, but I admit that there is such a thing as wisdom and truth, and I am open to facts and logic because I love wisdom." The Greek word for someone who loves wisdom is philo (brotherly love) soph (wisdom, again) - "philosopher."

Who then is the sophist, and who the philosopher? Anyone who uses an advantage of power to control the debate and keep certain facts off the table (in the style of the "objective" journalist) is a sophist. Anyone who eschews ad hominem attacks and other propagandistic techniques, and who is open to the facts and logic pointed out from any quarter, is a philosopher. Your average FReeper, lacking any ability to control the debate, must perforce be a philosopher.

Of course the moderators of FR, and Jim Robinson, are in a position to be able to control the debate on FR, and actually they do. But their control extends only to FR in particular, and not the Internet generally - let alone to any of the so-called "mainstream media." And FR succeeds as a forum because in fact the moderators are not interested in manipulating the discussion but in appealing to what is in America conventionally called a "conservative" audience. Likewise Rush Limbaugh and the rest are in a position to be able to be what Rush calls "a benevolent dictator" of what is said on their shows. And likewise, those shows succeed or fail as they exercise that power in such a way as to appeal to a wide audience, or fail to.

Rush calls his format "the long form," by which he obviously means that the format does not depend on hit and run tactics. "The News" by contrast is a very stylized, stilted view. You are basically given the word, whether you like it or not. Nothing is on the table for discussion. Rush on the other hand takes calls, and debates with callers. His listeners would hear it if he were being manipulative with his callers, and he succeeds because his listeners do not hear that. A talk show host who allows a wide range of views to be expressed, and who focuses that discussion on current affairs, is addressing the "market for conservative-based news."



TOPICS: Your Opinion/Questions
KEYWORDS: ap; bias; journalism; rush
Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
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See also,

  Why Broadcast Journalism is
Unnecessary and Illegitimate


1 posted on 11/14/2007 7:44:31 AM PST by conservatism_IS_compassion
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To: Obadiah; Mind-numbed Robot; Zacs Mom; A.Hun; johnny7; The Spirit Of Allegiance; ...
Ping.

2 posted on 11/14/2007 7:45:58 AM PST by conservatism_IS_compassion (The idea around which liberalism coheres is that NOTHING actually matters except PR.)
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To: fporretto; walford; rwfromkansas; Natural Law; Old Professer; RJCogburn; Jim Noble; hotpotato; ...
Ping.

3 posted on 11/14/2007 7:47:12 AM PST by conservatism_IS_compassion (The idea around which liberalism coheres is that NOTHING actually matters except PR.)
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion

Broadcast journalism was created out of neccessity for World War II and it became a means to promote opposition to Hitler, sympathy for England and American involvement in the war.

After the war it transplated itself back home and found its niche promoting liberal causes in the United States.


4 posted on 11/14/2007 7:52:41 AM PST by Nextrush (Proudly uncommitted in the 2008 race for president for now,, but McCain and Paul never)
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion
Nice piece.

It bears repeating: Objective journalism is an illusion. A reporter may try to be objective, and in many cases may approach an objective viewpoint, but the mere process of observing and reporting upon those observations is subjective. It's human nature and it cannot be avoided---nor should it be, really, because the subjective opinion of the reporter often provides the slant that makes the story compelling.

C-SPAN probably comes the closest to objective journalism when they plant a camera and let their viewers observe the action.

5 posted on 11/14/2007 8:10:26 AM PST by Hemingway's Ghost (Spirit of '75)
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion

Great article, thanks for posting.


6 posted on 11/14/2007 8:13:05 AM PST by jazusamo (DefendOurMarines.com)
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To: Nextrush
Broadcast journalism was created out of necessity for World War II and it became a means to promote opposition to Hitler, sympathy for England and American involvement in the war.

As you probably know, but for anyone interested, George Orwell was bitterly disappointed that his lung condition, caused rejection for the armed conflict. He lent his talents to the BBC. He conceded that it was necessary to deal in lies to defeat fascism. The BBC told us a number of lies. Whether it was fed them and they did not know, maybe gives them a pass in some cases.

One big lie was the U-Boat surfacing, to machine gun survivors of a British merchant ship. It was a British Sunderland flying boat that machine gunned the U-Boat. Likely British survivors unintentionally. The Liverpool mob tried to lynch another U-Boat commander who had been captured. The police rescued him.

True, from there on in the U-Boats mercilessly sank merchant ships. Then crash dived.

Orwell partly based 1984, on a giant propaganda machine that was the BBC. I chuckle at many of my generation who were children in WW2. They still repeat what they had to believe then. Of course, lies notwithstanding, the enemy did enough evil deeds to last for all time.

The almost amusing thing, is that books are written constantly boasting of how lies were told. If one follows as to how deception was the perogative of British counter-intelligence, one has to have two minds. One for the old BBC propaganda on the evil cunning of the enemy and one for the "true" stories of how stupid the Germans were.

'"Bodyguard Of Lies" etc. Not to forget the Nazi plot to take over Mexico and then drive up to the USA>

7 posted on 11/14/2007 8:16:04 AM PST by Peter Libra
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To: Nextrush

I think Fox News does a pretty good job representing the Right. There’s Tucker Carlson(sometimes), Glenn Beck.
Conservatives definitely control most talk radio, I mean radio America is a joke and a HUGE proportion of Americans sit in their cars each day in traffic going to and from work.
Broadcast journalism, the ABC/CBS/NBC’s I think and am assuming here that a lot of retired people must watch them or people put it on in the background, and they do have a liberal tilt as not many conservatives go into journalism, and probably never will, it’s not that profitable, and there’s a lot of “warm fuzzy” crap they would have to deal with. No thanks.


8 posted on 11/14/2007 8:16:35 AM PST by Pawtucket Patriot
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To: Pawtucket Patriot
When you say some American is "conservative," you actually mean that they think that a contract written yesterday has the same meaning today, and that it should be enforced as intended, not as might come to seem "nice" to people judging it later. Especially as might seem "nice" to people with no skin in the game.

Americans actually believe in liberty, which is not conservative because liberty means a lot of people making up their own minds about what they will do, and therefore tends to result in change rather than in maintaining the status quo. Consequently "liberal" is a positive label to Americans - and as such is a label which those with propaganda power here have tended to award to their friends. And "conservative" - although in a very limited sense germane - is actually on the surface a negative to Americans, and therefore is a label which those with the propaganda power to do so have tended to award as a booby prize to their adversaries.


9 posted on 11/14/2007 8:47:45 AM PST by conservatism_IS_compassion (The idea around which liberalism coheres is that NOTHING actually matters except PR.)
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion
A saw a remarkable interview with Clarence Thomas on C-SPAN recently (soon after the release of his book My Grandfather's Son). The most amazing part of the interview was his explanation to the interviewer about why he hasn't read a newspaper in more than 20 years.
10 posted on 11/14/2007 8:50:41 AM PST by Alberta's Child (I'm out on the outskirts of nowhere . . . with ghosts on my trail, chasing me there.)
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To: Peter Libra
Discussing WWII politics puts me in mind of The New Dealers' War: FDR and the War Within World War II. Mandatory reading for discussion of WWII, IMHO. It opens with an imbroglio which occurred the week before Pearl Harbor stirred up by a Chicago newspaper.

11 posted on 11/14/2007 8:58:17 AM PST by conservatism_IS_compassion (The idea around which liberalism coheres is that NOTHING actually matters except PR.)
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion

BTTT


12 posted on 11/14/2007 9:02:43 AM PST by E.G.C.
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion; FBD; BraveMan
An excellent, simply superb essay/synopsis of WTH's happened and happening in & with the Liberal-Socialist dominated media today, c_I_c. ;^)

I found this intriguing: "IOW, the newspapers of the founding era were pretty much like the local freebie advertising weeklies we see today - which don't do national/international newswire stories because the presumption is that the customer has seen all that on TV, heard it on the radio, or seen it on the Internet just as quickly as the local printer saw it."

I *terminated* the local rag (& you know why) and noticed more than ever before the "paper box" I left up filled with all manner of freebies, 99% advertising.
Interestingly my *2* neighbors continued their subscriptions but they did not receive the blizzard of freebies as was I.
Strange, that.

A close examination revealed something fascinating.
ALL the freebies AND the daily (I terminated) are owned, produced/printed by the *same* entity: Connelly Media.
Imagine that. :o)

Kind of self evident.
Newspapers today --large or small-- are in the SOLE business of selling advertising FIRST and provide "news* secondarily. Whatever "news" a rag's subscriber receives regardless the originating source is without a doubt hand picked information. Isn't that by definition, propaganda?

Nonetheless the rags pay their bills via advertising, not *news* and we know how important circ numbers are to ad rates, eh?

So it begs the question does the daily I had (as well as all others) as a matter of business plan cook their books for the purpose of upping circ numbers using freebie giveaways to that end?

Think of it: The daily I terminated pay for materials & labor to get into my hands what's really the most important product they produce and it's for free.
HA!!
Who'd a thunk it was never about protecting the republic's citizen's right to know as their amendment was meant? {g}

I for one put nothing past the insidious limousine Liberal-Socialists infesting the media when it comes to *profit*, and that's the only reason I've related my experience to you.

BTW I'd not seen the term, "Big Journalism", used before reading your well researched, written piece.
I LOVE IT!!!

Sorry my friend, but *I'm* stealing it.

...for my own!! ;^)

13 posted on 11/14/2007 9:15:44 AM PST by Landru (finally made it to the dark side of the moon.)
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion

Big market. All we have now is the Washington Times and the New York Sun. The Times is daily in Washington and weekly in the rest of the country. The news arrives too late, after I’ve already gotten it on the internet. The Sun isn’t available in my state.
Forget print media.
We need an internet-based medium that goes out and finds the news. Not a bunch of links like we already have (FR, Lucianne, World Net Daily, Drudge, etc).
Then we need local news. This is the catch. For local news we are stuck. We have no choice except the local liberal rag.
How about it, some of you rich Republicans? Start financing a good news source?


14 posted on 11/14/2007 9:22:18 AM PST by Leftism is Mentally Deranged
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To: Hemingway's Ghost
Objective journalism is an illusion. A reporter may try to be objective, and in many cases may approach an objective viewpoint, but the mere process of observing and reporting upon those observations is subjective.
A reporter may try to be objective, but that effort must begin with introspection into what the reporter wants to be true. Without that introspection, the reporter merely assumes that he is objective. And no one is more subjective than someone who is taking their own objectivity for granted.

15 posted on 11/14/2007 9:30:36 AM PST by conservatism_IS_compassion (The idea around which liberalism coheres is that NOTHING actually matters except PR.)
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To: Hemingway's Ghost
the mere process of observing and reporting upon those observations is subjective

The reader (or consumer as the Marxists like to think of us) also contributes to the construction. That is one of the reasons these discussion forums exist.

16 posted on 11/14/2007 9:35:28 AM PST by RightWhale (anti-razors are pro-life)
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion
And no one is more subjective than someone who is taking their own objectivity for granted.

Precisely. Everyone I knew in j-school thought he or she was objective. With an interior audience of one, how could you think otherwise?

Newspapers that try to promote objectivity are full of sh*t. Anyone who gets his or her news via newspaper is a complete fool if he or she believes otherwise. A New York Times reader in the 1930s, for example, would think that the Soviet Union was a paradise based on Walter Duranty's "reporting" alone.

17 posted on 11/14/2007 9:42:54 AM PST by Hemingway's Ghost (Spirit of '75)
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To: Leftism is Mentally Deranged
What we need is the wisdom, as I see it, to recognize that journalism as we know it is by design anticonservative.

Look, it is patent that I have very strong and, I hope I have demonstrated, firmly grounded logical opinions about the tendencies of journalism. They run essentially perfectly counter to the discussions you are likely to see on places like Wikipedia (which is IMHO merely a new MSM outlet). But even though there exists a "conservapedia" designed to counter Wikipedia, I have not posted to it. Why? I tried - but was defeated by the demanded format.

I actually believe that Jim Robinson has hit on a superb format for the dissemination of conservative perspective. If you are conservative and you want to see discussion of current events in which you are not bombarded by so-called "liberal" sophistry, the best way to get it is from FR. And if you think you want to be told "what is going on," you actually need to check your premises and realize that that is not realistic.

We do not have a "right to know," we only have the right to our own opinions, and to spend money at our own discretion to try to promote our opinions. And we have the implied right to access to the opinions of others (on mutually agreed-upon terms).

IMHO there is no reason why all our information cannot come to us, from the bottom up, on the Internet. We should not trust any claim of authority; we do not need it. We can talk things over and make up our own minds. Simply allowing someone to tell us "what is going on" just doesn't cut it.


18 posted on 11/14/2007 9:53:59 AM PST by conservatism_IS_compassion (The idea around which liberalism coheres is that NOTHING actually matters except PR.)
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion; FBD; Landru
I could have been easily led to believe this piece was written specifically for (to) the editors of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel; as prolific a supporter of the liberal (excuse me, Progressive) socialist agenda as there ever was.

I do have hope for the future though. I’m finding more and more articles previously posted in Free Republic picked up in the Journal Sentinel, the following day! Dare I hope Big Journalism is taking its queue from the very citizens it deigns to serve? Could it be the tail is wagging the dog?

Nah, just wishful thinking again; seeing what I want to see. I've been warned (rightly so) about this once already today . . .

19 posted on 11/14/2007 10:01:45 AM PST by BraveMan
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To: Landru
I'd not seen the term, "Big Journalism", used before . . . *I'm* stealing it.
You might not have seen it before; I never saw it anywhere but in my own writing either. But you certainly are welcome to be the first to pick it up. Go for it, and welcome!

20 posted on 11/14/2007 12:46:42 PM PST by conservatism_IS_compassion (The idea around which liberalism coheres is that NOTHING actually matters except PR.)
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion
That being the case, we-the-people have the right and the duty to assign the burden of proof for anyone's claim of objectivity squarely on the shoulders of the claimant. That is, we should not be embarrassed by their begging the question but should demand that they prove their case.

The "objective" propagandists NEVER have to prove their case. They do not subject themselves to scrutiny from anyone at anytime. That is fine because as evidence of their methods permeates your senses from your (or others) observations, you would rather jettison them than confront them. Life is short.

Anyone who uses an advantage of power to control the debate and keep certain facts off the table (in the style of the "objective" journalist) is a sophist.

BUMP!

Anyone who eschews ad hominem attacks and other propagandistic techniques, and who is open to the facts and logic pointed out from any quarter, is a philosopher. Your average FReeper, lacking any ability to control the debate, must perforce be a philosopher.

Captured the essence of the change taking place by FReepers and non-FReepers! BUMP-TO-THE-TRUTH!

OUTSTANDING!

21 posted on 11/14/2007 3:36:58 PM PST by PGalt
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion
The New Dealer's War.

Went out to Coles/Indigo and ordered this book. Will arrive in about four days. Thanks for the heads up.

22 posted on 11/14/2007 3:56:02 PM PST by Peter Libra
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion
Very interesting philosophical discussion. My philosophy is that we ought to oppose leftism on the very fundamental philosophical level: The sophist argues from the assumption of his own wisdom, resulting in the trivial argument, "I am wise and you are not. You disagree with me. Therefore you are wrong." The philosopher replies, "I do not claim to be wise, but I love wisdom and am ready to hear your facts and your logic. But not your claims to superior virtue which you cannot prove."

It is my opinion that journalism as we have known it all our lives is not something which always existed, but something which is an artifact of the telegraph and the monopolistic Associated Press. In the founding era papers were often weeklies, or even irregularly published - and therefore did not deliver news any faster than you could get it by word of mouth. With the advent of the high speed printing press the printers had bandwidth they needed to fill, and became aggressive in pursuing news stories to fill up space. The AP filled that need admirably - and gave the news editor sources which the general public did not have access to.

When the editor had that, he was in a position to talk down to the reader, and he used his propaganda power to promote the conceit that journalism is "objective." Note that I did not say that the editor said he was objective and other journalists were not - it is critical to understand that journalism in general had to be set up on a pedestal because they all have the same source and are essentially fronts for the Associated Press. At root, journalism as we know it is a monopolistic enterprise - the establishment in America, if that term has any meaning at all.

There is no proof - no way to prove - that journalism is objective. The lack of bias is an unprovable negative, and the con of the journalist is that the fact that it couldn't be proved if it were true shows that we must assume that in fact it is true. It would be impolite to say otherwise, just as it would be impolite to say that a woman is immoral just because she cannot prove that she did not sleep with twenty different men last year. But the situations are not comparable because

First, assuming that you are objective is the very essence of subjectivity. Second, journalism claims to be not only objective but important, and yet journalism does not do things but only criticizes those who do. Theodore Roosevelt said that "It is not the critic who counts . . . the credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena . . ." But journalism not only criticizes the doer, it praises the fellow critic by applying the positive labels "liberal" and "progressive" to him.

And third, of course, is the historical record of cases where journalism has promoted - often, continues to promote - notions which are provably false. It was patent from the beginning that Michael Nifong was abusing his office when he tried the Crystal Mangum charges in the newspaper. It was patent from the moment that Dan Rather made his "Killian memos" charges that, having only copies and not originals of the putative memos, and no chain of custody for them, CBS could not possibly know that the "memos" were authentic - and it was very quickly demonstrated that it was extremely improbable that the documents had been produced on a machine which even existed at the time the "memo" putatively were written. And on and on; one could go down the list of charges of bias which Ann Coulter lays and documents in Slander.

In sum, leftism is simply criticism and second guessing of the doer by those who take no responsibilty for results. It is supported by the propaganda power of a monopolistic news industry which selectively throws data at us in a confusing cloud to obscure the lack of evidence for the wisdom of its worldview, and is comfortable making baseless ad hominum arguments. Journalism as we know it is inherently leftist - and leftism is sophistry.

Natural Law and Child Abuse American Thinker ^ | November 24, 2007 | Ed Kaitz


23 posted on 12/01/2007 5:51:03 AM PST by conservatism_IS_compassion (The idea around which liberalism coheres is that NOTHING actually matters except PR.)
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion

bttt


24 posted on 12/01/2007 6:07:00 AM PST by SShultz460 (If peace is the answer; it must be a stupid question.)
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion

There’s a common saying: “Garbage in, garbage out.”

But, with the Democrat Media, it doesn’t matter what goes in. Good, bad, indifferent. Everything that comes out is garbage.

And the Republican Party has given them control over the debate and the presidential selection process.

The Stupid Party lives. Kinda. For a bit longer. Maybe.


25 posted on 12/01/2007 6:12:45 AM PST by EternalVigilance (With "conservatives" like these, who needs liberals??)
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion
You make some really great points.

Well done!

26 posted on 12/01/2007 8:04:46 AM PST by Gritty (Much of the Western media have converted to Islam, and won't convert back to journalism-Mark Steyn)
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The fundamental fallacy under which most Americans labor is the fatuous conceit that journalism is, or even should be, objective. That is the product of the biggest propaganda campaign in history, far longer in extent than Goebbels was able to muster. It has been going on so long that memory of man runneth not to the contrary - indeed, that was already true before most of us were even born. It started back in 1848 with the founding of the Associated Press, which quickly established a telegraph news distribution monopoly which was obviously a propaganda colossus, and was challenged on that basis. But it deflected criticism of its monopoly status by claiming that the Associated Press was (all say it together now, class) "objective."

The telegraph and the the AP "wire" transformed the newspaper business. Founding Era newspapers were openly opinionated, with Jefferson and Hamilton each sponsoring a paper to attack the other. And early newspapers were frequently weeklies rather than dailies, and some had no deadline at all and just went to press when they were good and ready. In fact they most resembled our modern local freebie weeklies, which also assume that you get distant news from some other source by the time you see their publications.

The claim of journalistic objectivity is fatuous because the one thing journalism is in favor of is that journalism be assumed to be important. That is its underlying bias, and that explains the fact that reporters and journalistic organs do not question each others' objectivity. They are unified on the importance of their business, far more fundamentally than they are competitive about anything. The reality is that, most days, if you pick up a newspaper in a library from the same date five year earlier you won't remember anything in it because nothing of lasting significance was reported that day. Most days, the most significant thing that happens is all the routine work that the tens of millions of employed people in the country did that day - none of which is ever going to be reported in a newspaper.

So even in the unlikely event that the newspaper contains no outright falsehoods on a given day, it will be a half truth because it systematically ignores the big picture. And that makes the conceit that journalism is objective absurd. The only "evidence" for that conceit is the opinion of journalists that journalists are objective - and belief in your own objectivity is the very essence of subjectivity.

 Hillary ClintonÂ’s corruption and the mainstream mediaÂ’s treason
Brookes News ^ | 19th November 2007 | Gerard Jackson


27 posted on 12/03/2007 7:45:42 AM PST by conservatism_IS_compassion (The idea around which liberalism coheres is that NOTHING actually matters except PR.)
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"the Iraq War" was over the moment Saddam Hussein was captured and the rest has just been post-war pacification. However, the media no longer lets someone like Bush (or a Republican, anyway) declare victory. Today's Western media and intelligentsia seem to refuses to acknowledge that any nation from the West can win a war. They will insist on perennial quotes around "win".

So Bush could not have successfully "declared" the "Iraq War" over when it actually achieved its objective (ousting Saddam Hussein), and can not do so now. The media dominate perceptions of when it's "over", unfortunately.

I dislike the formulation, "the media" for two reasons. First, although the entertainment media such as fictional TV and fictional films are in fact "liberal," there is actually no point to complaining about fiction not being true. And nonfiction books are not the problem. And that leaves journalism as the actual culpable villain of the piece. Second, the term "media" is a plural noun and - as Rush is wont to say - if you have heard one news outlet you have heard them all, but if you miss Rush who else is going to tell you what he would? So the formulation I prefer is the singular term, "Big Journalism."

And why is Big Journalism singular, why does it speak with one voice? The answer is bound and gagged, and lying on your doorstep. Big Journalism is singular because the Associated Press is singular. Full Stop. The bias of Big Journalism is that the news services are objective, and the bias of the news services is that the news services are objective.

And since arguing from the assumption of one's own objectivity is the very definition of subjectivity, Big Journalism is a baying example of hubristic arrogance which calls itself "objective." And which calls in nonjournalists any reflection of its own perspective, not "objective" but "liberal" or "progressive" or "moderate."

The bias of Big Journalism is not only its belief in its own objectivity but its belief that its product - mere talk, criticism, and second guessing - is more important than action. Journalists think that journalism is more important than growing food and distributing food, or producing and distributing electrical power, or producing and distributing fuel, or producing security by the police and the military.

Big Journalism - and its "liberal" fellow travelers who are not in the journalism professsion but who in principle can become "objective" journalists simply by changing hats (as George Stephanopolis did) - reject the idea that the military knows more about fighting, or the fuel companies know more about delivering fuel, than journalists do. On the grounds that journalists are objective, and journalists have access to the newswire.

Consequently Big Journalism rejects the possibility of military success - or economic success - under the leadership of a president who is not "liberal."

Happy Xmas, your war is over! http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/article563496.ece ^


28 posted on 12/10/2007 6:46:54 AM PST by conservatism_IS_compassion (The idea around which liberalism coheres is that NOTHING actually matters except PR.)
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To: Hemingway's Ghost
C-SPAN probably comes the closest to objective journalism when they plant a camera and let their viewers observe the action

The problem with C-SPAN is at which events they choose to (or not to) place their cameras.

29 posted on 12/10/2007 6:55:39 AM PST by FrdmLvr
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Once upon a time, journalism WAS an honorable profession, especially as practiced at highly reputable newspapers like the Atlanta Constitution and (believe it or not) the New York Times. Then there were the great reporters on the television networks, as exemplified by Edward R Murrow.
With all due respect, that sounds exactly like a fairy tale. And I don't mean only the "Once upon a time" part.

In reality, journalism in the founding era was more like a modern local weekly rag than anything else. Most newspapers were weeklies, and some had no deadline at all and simply went to press when the printer was good and ready. And like the modern local weekly, the founding era newspaper printer took for granted that its readers would have heard the latest news by the time they ever got around to reading a week-old newspaper. Hamilton and Jefferson sponsored competing newspapers in which they waged their partisan battles against each other; I see that as the embryonic stage of political parties in America.

And then came the high speed printing press, and the telegraph and the Associated Press. The high speed printing press was hungry for content to fill its new bandwidth, and the telegraph was just the ticket for providing it. The Associated Press aggressively worked to attain and maintain a monopoly on the telegraphic transmission of commercial news. All very efficient. It was of course noticed at the time that the Associated Press was potentially a centralized propaganda operation, and questions were raised about it. But the AP defended itself by pointing out that its component newspapers were of all different sorts and persuasions, and asserted that it was "objective."

The reality is that journalism is a special interest, the business of persuading the public to pay attention to itself and its advertisers on the basis that journalism - with its "wire" - has information that the public does not yet know. But the reality is also that the information which fits that category is inherently superficial. The newswire tells you in lavish detail about the house that burned down yesterday, but it doesn't mention all the work contractors did on houses yesterday. Consequently after a few years of the papers telling you only that houses are burning down, you may wake up one morning and realize that an entire city has been built.

Journalism is an artificial reality in which journalists are heroes and the people who produce and distribute the food, fuel, security, and other goods and services you depend on are suspects or villains. In the real world Theodore Roosevelt is correct that

"It is not the critic who counts . . . the credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena - Theodore Roosevelt
In the artificial reality of journalism, it is just the opposite. In JournalismWorld, people who second guess are heroes who should be in charge of everything. The planted axiom of JournalismWorld is socialism.

In the real world the correct definition of subjective should be, "having a belief in one's own objectivity." There never was a golden age of objective journalism, only a golden age of propaganda success of the newswire monopoly which I like to call Big Journalism. If you read Ann Coulter's Treason, you will come to understand that the term "McCarthyism" is simply a smear of a patriot (albeit not necessarily a more perfect person than, say, yourself).

Dan Rather's behavior during and since the "Killian memo" flap is inexplicable unless you understand that it is simply the standard operating procedure of "objective" journalism. The only reason it didn't work - the only reason Rather is not Cronkite, and John Kerry is not POTUS - is that the Internet and Talk Radio have broken down the walls between you and me and the sources of news. Cronkite could count on the support of the rest of Big Journalism to prevent a critical mass of knowledge of the truth from developing in the general public which would have made a wide public aware of journalism's tendentiousness. Rather counted on the same thing, and his fellow gatekeepers at NBC, ABC, The New York Times, et al did not let him down but followed right where he was leading. The only trouble was, gatekeepers are irrelevant when the walls are down. Some people - a lot of people, actually - are still restricting themselves to the gates, out of habit. But others have the sense to realize what the gatekeepers have been up to, and go through the hole in the wall instead.

Rather's Ruin and the Rise of the Pajamahadeen

Unfettered 'citizen journalism' too risky
Atlanta Journal-Constitution ^ | December 13, 2007 | David Hazinski


30 posted on 12/14/2007 6:57:55 AM PST by conservatism_IS_compassion (The idea around which liberalism coheres is that NOTHING actually matters except PR.)
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion

I will say this.

If you are a Media Company your News Division should be a loss leader. If it’s not, you aren’t providing enough news or you are not relevant enough. I should be able to read (if I want to), what kind of gum was passed out to the line at the concert I was at (or my kid). If it’s not Pajama media will grow (yay) because of increased connectivity.

Do not Editorialize your News. I paid for your friggen paper just like the other guy. Consign your insulting me to something discretionary in nature, or else I will just decline you totally. This goes both ways

I really don’t care about your writers views on things beyond the topic they are covering. This crap annoys me to no freggin end with sports writing. I am tired of the whole Workers of the World Unite deal when it comes to people who makes millions of dollars.


31 posted on 12/14/2007 7:11:00 AM PST by SShultz460 (If peace is the answer; it must be a stupid question.)
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To: SShultz460
To me the issue is not some illusory "right to know" but actually a fundamental philosophical question. Do we actually assume that anyone is objective? When we are children we go to school, and teachers inculcate certain things in us. Math teachers show the logic and the proofs of theorems, and we are supposed to understand the premises and learn the implications of the assumptions involved. English teachers tell us about the parts of speech and the Objective Case, and so on. Health teachers tell us about nutrition, sanitation, first aid, and bodily functions. Traditional knowledge, all fine and good.

The problem comes in when history and especially modern history and civics comes into the picture. History is political in important respects. How much sympathy is accorded to whom? How much attention is accorded to whom? Who, if anyone, is assumed to be objective?

IMHO journalism is a system of exploiting the "new technology" of the high speed press and the telegraph and the radio and TV to practice on the credulity of the public. This effort is assisted by the public schools, which teach that journalism is objective. Once clear your head of all that propaganda, and you realize that you have the right to your own opinions, the right to speak and to spend money and time to try to promote your opinions, and the right to decide who you will pay attention to and who you will ignore.

That is all. You do not have the right to the truth; nobody is obligated to tell you what kind of gum was passed out at a concert. And if that is all you care about, you will have to investigate it yourself, all the while ignoring everyone who tries to tell you about what they care about.


32 posted on 12/14/2007 7:51:42 AM PST by conservatism_IS_compassion (The idea around which liberalism coheres is that NOTHING actually matters except PR.)
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To: SShultz460
You do not have the right to the truth; nobody is obligated to tell you what kind of gum was passed out at a concert. And if that is all you care about, you will have to investigate it yourself, all the while ignoring everyone who tries to tell you about what they care about.

Apropos of that, Thomas Sowell had his breakout book entirely premised on the point that knowledge - actionable knowledge, at least - is not free.


33 posted on 12/14/2007 9:31:15 AM PST by conservatism_IS_compassion (The idea around which liberalism coheres is that NOTHING actually matters except PR.)
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Rush is the best. I can’t believe he “only” has 25 million listeners. You’re right, it should be double.

The reason is quite simple:

In the middle of the Nineteenth Century, journalism came into being. We had had a "press" before, of course - but it was only with the advent of the telegraph and the Associated Press that "the press" published daily (or even more frequently) and the press had information that the public at large did not have access to. Before that, "newspapers" were mostly weeklies, and printers got their news from the same travelers that the public did.

So journalism as we know it didn't exist in the founding era. Instead of presuming to be objective, newspapers were openly opinionated until the 1830s, when the high speed press made mass marketing of newspapers practical, instead of the older presses whose smaller runs could be tailored to niche markets of people who wanted particular perspectives in their newspapers. But it was the AP which monopolized the telegraphy of news. And, being an obviously dangerous monopoly, the AP had to defend itself by proclaiming itself to be "objective," and all the newspapers using the AP had to fall in line.

So the AP was the engine of the homogenization of the perspective projected by "the press." And why is that perspective leftist? The nature of the news business is to hype itself, mere talk, at the expense of those it reports on - the people and institutions which get things done. Second guessing those who perform to a bottom line and promoting critics who scapegoat and evade responsibility to any bottom line is what socialism is all about.

Conservatives like Rush naturally have an audience because they point out that the emperor Objective Journalism has no clothes, and that as a way of running things socialism is a paper tiger. But just as naturally, most people refuse to hear anyone who points those things out.
34 posted on 01/06/2008 5:41:16 AM PST by conservatism_IS_compassion (The idea around which liberalism coheres is that NOTHING actually matters except PR.)
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion

Just when I get discouraged with this site and all of the threads with simple-minded one liner smart ass comments (I’m as guilty as anyone), I find a thread like this one, with some incredibly well-written, intelligent posts. Yours is one of the best in a thread glittering with excellent replies. Kudos to you.


35 posted on 01/06/2008 5:54:00 AM PST by Hardastarboard (DemocraticUnderground.com is an internet hate site.)
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion; LS
Well done cIc! I either missed the ping on this one or didn't get pinged.

In any case, just an excellent piece of writing.

You have apparently looked at the problem a good deal; you believe the "objective" tag really began with the creation of the AP in the 1840's, or did it possibly come later?

36 posted on 01/07/2008 12:38:55 AM PST by ForGod'sSake (ABCNNBCBS: An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly.)
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion

It truly continues to be puzzling to me why there are not a bunch of television channels all over the world that are geared towards conservatives that involve news, sports, education, science, movies, entertainment, etc. The demand for such television channels has existed for several decades and counting, but the “political left” truly continues to completely dominate the world of television as well as continues to completely dominate the world of entertainment.


37 posted on 01/07/2008 1:09:30 AM PST by johnthebaptistmoore
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To: ForGod'sSake; conservatism_IS_compassion
It is true that AP and the telegraph (1848) advanced the concept of "objectivity" by focusing on "facts" instead of opinion per se.

1) Remember, ALL newspapers were "partisan" and supported either the Democrats or the Whigs prior to 1850. They were blatant, they were overt, and by one account 80% of GA papers were demonstrably pro-one party or the other. The other 20% were mostly "advertisers" which focused on business (but even then had an agenda).

2) Still, even with the telegraph (which really didn't connect a great deal until the late 1850s), that didn't change newspaper reporting.

3) What changed reporting was the Civil War. It had nothing to do with the "chain of control," or anything like that---it had everything to do with the public's demand for facts as opposed to opinions and rhetoric. Remember, up until 1861, news writing was incredibly flowery and long-winded. The war changed that, and introduced the "inverted pyramid" of writing: most important facts first. What the telegraph did was to further refine that because of the need to economize on words, sort of like Pat Summerall calling a football game: ("to the 40, 30, 20. Touchdown, Dallas.") I have in my book an example of the Confederate "information" officer---the guy in charge of trying to get pro-Confederate stuff into the papers---giving examples of how to economize on words for telegraph transmission and news stories. He elimates all superfluous opinion and extra words.

"Today, forces under Gen. Lee defeated Union army near Five Forks. Union left the field to the north. Losses heavy."

Now, you can quibble with "defeated" (but if the enemy leaves, that's obvious) or "heavy losses," but this would be a typical dispatch. Papers began to publish extensive lists of the names of those killed, without any additional commentary ("died bravely in battle," or some other BS).

By 1865, the large majority of all papers had adopted the inverted style, heavy fact-based reporting, and began to separate "opinion" or editorial pages from so-called "news." While I agree with cIc that this is ultimately an impossible feat, one can come reasonably close by reporting the most obvious, important facts first (recognizing that everyone will not think the same facts are important).

I also agree that a better way to go is a "biased" partisan press so that people can make up their own minds. However, I do think journalism went through a period of about 100 years (1860-1960) where the majority of reporters and editors tried to be "objective" and adopted codes of conduct to try to ensure objectivity (always get more than one witness; get the other side of the story; no unsourced stories; etc.) In other words, I do think for a while most reporters attempted to be "fair and balanced" and "objective." Whether they succeeded is a different question.

One of the problems is that if you ALWAYS get the "other side of the story," it does introduce the notion that there always IS another "side of the story." What was the other side of the story to the Holocaust? Should we "get Hitler's take?" In other words, it legitimizes falsity.

Finally, if you are really interested in this, try to run down an article (you'd probably need interlibrary loan or a college library) from 1973 or 1974 by Robert C. Loewenberg, "'Value-Free' vs. 'Value-Laden' History: A Distinction Without a Difference," The Historian. I can find the exact date if you want it. He shows that attempting to separate "facts" from "values," whether in history or journalism, is impossible, and that "objectivity" was one response---but the other was outright bias against the "status quo," whether it was society, tradition, or whatever. In part, then, that explains the inbred liberalism of reporters.

38 posted on 01/07/2008 4:32:09 AM PST by LS (CNN is the Amtrak of News)
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To: LS; Obadiah; Mind-numbed Robot; Zacs Mom; A.Hun; johnny7; The Spirit Of Allegiance; ...
I have in my book [A Patriot's History of the United States: From Columbus's Great Discovery to the War on Terror - No need to be shy, Larry.] an example of the Confederate "information" officer---the guy in charge of trying to get pro-Confederate stuff into the papers---giving examples of how to economize on words for telegraph transmission and news stories. He elimates all superfluous opinion and extra words.

. . . Still, even with the telegraph (which really didn't connect a great deal until the late 1850s), that didn't change newspaper reporting.

I think I referenced Mr. Lincoln's T-Mails and News Over the Wires in the article which started this thread. The former, more recent, book led me to want more on the topic and caused me to Google up the latter book. In consequence, I am at some risk of conflating the contents of the two somewhat. But the clear message was that the Associated Press, initially the New York Associated Press, was founded in 1848 and was an aggressive monopoly seeking to prevent public news from being transmitted in competition with itself. That was too obviously an unprecedented concentration of propaganda power to escape notice, and the AP was challenged on that basis. And the AP's response to that challenge to its very legitimacy was to point out that the newspapers in that association were of various political stripes - and to claim on that basis that there was no danger in the AP because the AP was objective.

Of course, since in the founding era there was no barrier to entry into the newspaper business other than a little capital, the perspective of any given newspaper no matter how tendentious had natural limits to its effect. But the AP was a different matter entirely. And of course the tradition of claiming objectivity is best known in the broadcasting business, where claiming objectivity is vital to the legitimacy of licensed journalism.

What changed reporting was the Civil War. It had nothing to do with the "chain of control," or anything like that---it had everything to do with the public's demand for facts as opposed to opinions and rhetoric.
According to the sources I cited, the Lincoln Administration did in fact coopt the AP by giving it favorable access to the telegraph offices and to Administration officials, and by preventing others from effectively competing with the AP - in exchange for favorable coverage and suppression of unfavorable or sensitive reports.
if you are really interested in this, try to run down an article (you'd probably need interlibrary loan or a college library) from 1973 or 1974 by Robert C. Loewenberg, "'Value-Free' vs. 'Value-Laden' History: A Distinction Without a Difference," The Historian. I can find the exact date if you want it. He shows that attempting to separate "facts" from "values," whether in history or journalism, is impossible, and that "objectivity" was one response---but the other was outright bias against the "status quo," whether it was society, tradition, or whatever. In part, then, that explains the inbred liberalism of reporters.
Very interesting, professor. I do want to see that! I'll be talking to my favorite librarian (my son) about it next time I drop by and see him.

39 posted on 01/07/2008 7:18:40 AM PST by conservatism_IS_compassion (The idea around which liberalism coheres is that NOTHING actually matters except PR.)
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion

BTTT


40 posted on 01/07/2008 7:28:07 AM PST by E.G.C.
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion

You are right-—Lincoln did co—opt the AP, but the change was broader (obviously, the Confederate news services were doing it too). And Leonard’s history of newspapers, “News For All,” suggests that change was slower and less far-reaching still. Even after the CW, for example, you still had the “penny press”/”yellow press” which MOSTLY covered scandal and crime, but was still anything but “objective.”


41 posted on 01/07/2008 7:59:41 AM PST by LS (CNN is the Amtrak of News)
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To: LS; conservatism_IS_compassion
I do think journalism went through a period of about 100 years (1860-1960) where the majority of reporters and editors tried to be "objective" and adopted codes of conduct to try to ensure objectivity (always get more than one witness; get the other side of the story; no unsourced stories; etc.) In other words, I do think for a while most reporters attempted to be "fair and balanced" and "objective." Whether they succeeded is a different question.

Steve Boriss frequently mentions the late Walter Lippmann as a proponent of a failed notion of objective, fact based, scientific (if you please) journalism. Boriss recently commented on the veracity of journalism's formalized ethics.

Octogenarian Helen Thomas, known by some as the "Dean of the White House press corps," whined the other day that "bloggers and everyone...with a laptop thinks they're journalists...They don't have our ethics." Given that journalism never established itself as a true profession with features such as governing bodies, licensing procedures, continuing education requirements, or an official code of ethics, it’s fair to ask what exactly are the ethics that journalists practice that the rest of us don’t. Sure, you can find some lists that purport to be codes of ethics from journalism enterprises like the Society of Professional Journalists or the NY Times. But if you actually take the time to read them, you will see that they are completely useless in day-to-day newsroom decision-making, providing virtually no firm definitions of clear violations, other than obvious abuses like plagiarism and fabrications that any blogger concerned about his reputation and credibility would follow.

In fact, several ethical principles that many bloggers follow simply because they are decent human beings are frequently violated by the mainstream media. Let’s start with an obvious one — do not break the law. The NY Times is actually proud when it shares classified information. It defends its behavior not upon whether it may harm the country, but on the tautology that the public has a “right to know” — which is always conveniently whatever the Times wants to publish. Do nothing to encourage criminal behavior? Too bad that NBC didn’t have that ethical rule handy when they decided to show footage of the VA Tech sniper presenting himself as a heroic martyr. How about treat your news subjects as if they are innocent until proven guilty? Tell that to the Duke lacrosse team. Respect the privacy of the grieving? Here’s an article (see bottom paragraph) where the Times admits to being the first to tell an aunt, already grieving from the 9/11 death of her pilot brother, that her niece died, helpfully adding “She burst into tears on the phone and would not comment further.”

Admit, correct, and apologize for errors immediately and publicly? We’re still waiting for Dan Rather to come clean on the forged memo about President Bush’s service in the Texas National Guard. Courageously expose evil? CNN’s Eason Jordan admitted to covering-up Saddam Hussein’s atrocities to keep his Baghdad bureau open. And, that’s actually better than the NY Times’ Walter Duranty who, without remorse, accepted a Pulitzer Prize for stories that covered-up the millions of Ukranian lives snuffed-out by Stalin.

If Helen Thomas’ views on her industry’s ethical standards qualify her to be a Dean of Journalism, I would hate to meet its Pope. (H/T: Ed Driscoll, Michelle Malkin)


Coral Ridge Ministries: Proclaiming truths that transform the world.

42 posted on 01/07/2008 8:19:38 AM PST by Milhous (Gn 22:17 your descendants shall take possession of the gates of their enemies)
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion

As usual, you keep your eye on the ball and inspire a good discussion! Thanks.


43 posted on 01/07/2008 8:37:00 AM PST by headsonpikes (Genocide is the highest sacrament of socialism.)
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To: Milhous
Great post, should be posted as an article on FR.

44 posted on 01/07/2008 11:27:42 AM PST by conservatism_IS_compassion (The idea around which liberalism coheres is that NOTHING actually matters except PR.)
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To: LS
You are right-—Lincoln did co—opt the AP, but the change was broader (obviously, the Confederate news services were doing it too).
Not only so, but southern states had been restricting the deployment of telegraph lines long before the Civil War. There simply weren't that many telegraph lines in the South. Hardly any, compared to the North.

45 posted on 01/07/2008 11:35:22 AM PST by conservatism_IS_compassion (The idea around which liberalism coheres is that NOTHING actually matters except PR.)
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To: conservatism_IS_compassion

I haven’t seen these #s, but it would be interesting to find out the total # of telegraph miles in the U.S. in 1860.


46 posted on 01/07/2008 11:38:15 AM PST by LS (CNN is the Amtrak of News)
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To: LS
I also agree that a better way to go is a "biased" partisan press so that people can make up their own minds. However, I do think journalism went through a period of about 100 years (1860-1960) where the majority of reporters and editors tried to be "objective" and adopted codes of conduct to try to ensure objectivity (always get more than one witness; get the other side of the story; no unsourced stories; etc.) In other words, I do think for a while most reporters attempted to be "fair and balanced" and "objective." Whether they succeeded is a different question.

One of the problems is that if you ALWAYS get the "other side of the story," it does introduce the notion that there always IS another "side of the story." What was the other side of the story to the Holocaust? Should we "get Hitler's take?" In other words, it legitimizes falsity.

What it actually legitimizes, IMHO, is the smuggling in of the reporter's own perspective on the issue, framed as "objectivity." And IMHO that not only is not actual objectivity, it is the very definition of subjectivity, the very opposite of what we supposedly can take for granted from journalists.

47 posted on 01/07/2008 11:51:16 AM PST by conservatism_IS_compassion (The idea around which liberalism coheres is that NOTHING actually matters except PR.)
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To: LS; conservatism_IS_compassion
One of the problems is that if you ALWAYS get the "other side of the story," it does introduce the notion that there always IS another "side of the story."

Hence the conundrum that FoxNews faces with its "fair and balanced" refrain. The dilemma, I suppose is, is there a better slogan; maybe drop the balanced??? The MAJOR problem arises when any news agency/reporter/humble correspondent has to deal with whoppers! I've stated this before, but I think it bears repeating. It's akin to and old saw from Mark Twain; something like: "A lie travels halfway around the world while the truth is putting its socks on!"

"Whoppers", if not dealt with immediately, are able to begin their journey without so much as a dumb look from most journalists. Rebuttals, when and if finally rendered, rarely seem to carry the same weight as the original terminological inexactitude, with some rare exceptions. The journalist, if inclined, who doesn't have facts, figures, charts, graphs, etc. at his fingertips to confront the charlatan is automatically at a disadvantage. The liars know this and use it to their advantage to achieve their goal -- misleading the unwashed.

I suspect fully one third of the electorate, if they pay any attention at all, are cheering on these frauds they call their leaders. They believe as their leaders do that the ends justifies the means -- it's for the common good doncha know.

That said, we should use the information and knowldege base we gain here on FR and elsewhere and somehow concentrate our efforts in educating the people on the fence; the probably 15 - 20% of the population that doesn't have any particular axe to grind, but want to actually do what's right for the country, for themselves and their posterity. Preaching to the choir is not a bad thing because it reinforces and supports the message we need to carry to our work, church, social groups, etc.

He shows that attempting to separate "facts" from "values," whether in history or journalism, is impossible, and that "objectivity" was one response---but the other was outright bias against the "status quo," whether it was society, tradition, or whatever. In part, then, that explains the inbred liberalism of reporters.

You might carry that a step further and include editors, managers, and even owners? Without the complicity of management and, at best, the apathy of owners, the bleeding hearts would never write a news article or editorial for publication. In defense of owners, they were milking the cash cow for all it was worth - if it ain't broke; don't fix it. When the wheels started falling off, they were left without a clue why. That is, the anti-everything-good-about-America manure they had allowed their charges to spread around the country AND the world.

Ever wonder why there are two things you're not supposed to talk about at work - religion and politics?

48 posted on 01/07/2008 3:23:05 PM PST by ForGod'sSake (ABCNNBCBS: An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly.)
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To: ForGod'sSake
Ok, we've talked about this before---and someone (don't think you) gleefully reports the "death" of the "Dinsaur media" based on falling subscriptions, viewership, or profits.

These are absolutely irrelevant to the moguls who run these companies. Even if they say differently, they don't mind subsidizing a "progressive" news outlet at the cost of a few million a year---which they siphon from their much more profitable enterprises---if it allows them to go to their cocktail parties and golf games and appear "with it," "concerned" and not part of the "right wing" establishment. So here is an example of where Marx was clearly wrong: they constantly go against their "class interest" because they would rather fit in socially than make more money or even beat the competitors.

As for "whoppers" and "fair and balanced," what is wrong with "Truthful?" "Honest?" "Accurate?" Presenting ALL sides may include the "right answer," but it also ensures several "wrong answers" will also get an airing. Why not endeavor beforehand to find out the truth, and report ONLY that? Jesus never gave Satan "equal time."

49 posted on 01/07/2008 3:49:30 PM PST by LS (CNN is the Amtrak of News)
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To: LS
I haven’t seen these #s, but it would be interesting to find out the total # of telegraph miles in the U.S. in 1860.
As I say I'm not exactly sure which of my two references contains it, but one of those references shows a map put out by the Census Bureau in the mid-1800s - and while the North shows up as a veritable cobweb of telegraph lines, the South had one major line up the east coast - and little if anything else.

The South didn't want it, for ideological reasons. They didn't even allow railroads to cross state lines. And, BTW, railroads were the "killer app" of telegraphy - railroads owned right of way which they could provide to the telegraph company for free, and the telegraph company had the ability to send valuable messages of command and control of the railroads as their top-priority traffic, also for free.


50 posted on 01/07/2008 4:37:40 PM PST by conservatism_IS_compassion (The idea around which liberalism coheres is that NOTHING actually matters except PR.)
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