Mark Charalambous, Feb. 10, 2004
Liberals have been positively apoplectic about what they claim is a preponderance of conservative bias in the media. But several best-selling books over the past couple of years have asserted the exact opposite, that the media is dominated by a “liberal elite.” Who’s right?
The arguments for a conservative bias usually boil down to examples where Republican politicians—typically from the Bush administration—are given a free pass on matters of political warfare and controversial issues of state.
|But the case for a liberal bias rests on a sweeping promotion of the liberal agenda on key social issues of concern to all Americans, such as abortion, gay marriage and racial preferences.|
But the case for a liberal bias rests on a sweeping promotion of the liberal viewpoint on key social issues of concern to all Americans, such as abortion, gay marriage and racial preferences.
News is biased through acts of commission as well as acts of omission. How the New York Times and their subsidiary Boston Globe reported the gay marriage controversy in Massachusetts illustrates both types of bias. The lengths to which they went to malign the movement to preserve marriage and pave the way for gay marriage in Massachusetts would fill a book. And in fact it has. Lawyer’s Weekly founder Ed Pawlick’s new book, “Libel by the New York Times,” documents the media giants’ campaign in painstaking detail. Gay marriage proponents actually trained and deployed people to intimidate signature gatherers (“blockers,” they called themselves). Yet this brown-shirt tactic was ignored while the newspapers of record reported trumped-up and eventually discredited allegations of improprieties by the signature gatherers themselves.
|Yes, conservatives are now popping up all over the place in television. But this is simply due to market forces. Now that conservatism has been freed from its ghetto (thank you, Fox News), networks are forced to present what audiences want: conservatives, if they wish to remain competitive.|
Even worse is the liberal media’s continued blackout of issues that are deemed just too politically incorrect, such as the universal gender-profiling and criminalization of men caught up in child custody, child support and domestic abuse cases. In courthouses each and every day, innocent men are stripped of their children, their income, their property, their wealth, their dignity, and often their freedom. In scope and degree, it is nothing less than a national holocaust, yet the liberal mainstream media won’t report it.
Mainstream media: network television, the New York and Los Angeles Times, the Boston Globe, the major weeklies Time, Newsweek, etc., as well as practically the entire edifice of academia, are firmly entrenched in the liberal worldview.
Yes, there are now several conservative voices in the media. But this is recent business, following several decades of suppression that only ended after President Reagan replaced the liberal guard at the FCC in the late 80’s. Up till then, the FCC had abused the Fairness Doctrine and used their licensing powers to silence conservatives.
Until the advent of Rush Limbaugh and talk radio in the 80s, conservatives were shunned and censored. Of all media forums, talk radio relies the least on management editorial viewpoint; it is directly responsive to market forces, i.e., customer satisfaction. Anyone in radio can tell you of the fickle nature of the business. It’s not unheard of to go to work one day and discover that not only do you no longer have a job, but that the format of your station changed overnight from Hip-Hop to Spoken Word. There is no job security in radio. Stations live and die by one thing: listenership. If no one’s listening, advertisers won’t buy, and the station goes under. In such a highly competitive marketplace, conservative talk radio has flourished because it was the only place where conservatives could go to communicate with one another. Management can’t control who’s going to call in.
|Many baby boomers, once knee-jerk liberals, have morphed into ardent voices for common sense and conservatism on social issues after seeing how the fruits of political correctness have impacted their adult lives—especially in regards to the world now inhabited by their children. They are simply fed up.|
Along with talk radio, the Internet is also an inherently democratic marketplace of ideas, where opinions can be presented without editorial censorship. Besides that other, odious aspect of human nature that has exploited this new weapon of mass communication, the Net is roiling with conservatives of every stripe who are angered and frustrated by the cultural left’s insinuations into virtually every aspect of our lives.
Yes, conservatives are now popping up all over the place in television. But this is simply due to market forces. Now that conservatism has been freed from its ghetto (thank you, Fox News), networks are forced to present what audiences want: conservatives, if they wish to remain competitive.
Liberals have good reason to be apoplectic. All signs indicate that the liberal reign of error may finally be coming to an end. Americans of all demographics are sick of identity politics and political correctness. Many baby boomers, once knee-jerk liberals, have morphed into ardent voices for common sense and conservatism on social issues after seeing how the fruits of political correctness have impacted their adult lives—especially in regards to the world now inhabited by their children. They are simply fed up.
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