Friday, July 10, 2009

Did the liberal media create Rush Limbuagh?

I read Carl Cannon's article, Sarah 'Barracuda' Palin and the Piranhas of the Press twice...Once upon a time I didn't believe that there was a media bias, but the longer I blog, the more clear it becomes. In my own home town a similar situation has happened, the local daily newspaper has it's own bias, it has a history of selectively going after some, trying to destroy their lives and lauding others. The local talk radio basically does the same thing, but of course most times directed with the opposite intention of the local daily.

It's easy to see if the local daily attempted to be as objective as they claim they are then the anger and the frustration as well as the controversy wouldn't exist to fuel talk radio. Is it really the fault of just the liberals though is something that I wonder. As Cannon points out:

Concerns about "liberal bias" arose in this supposed Golden Age, but we had an answer for that: Sure, reporters are liberal, we told our sources, but the publisher is conservative. The ideal being peddled was that, yes, a Depression-era reporter making $8 a week will likely pen pieces extolling the New Deal, but meanwhile the owner/publisher is commissioning editorials lamenting Franklin Roosevelt's assault on capitalism. It sounds esoteric now, but when newspapers were king it worked. (It might still work: The lone news outlet in North America that still operates under this model is The Wall Street Journal. Its editorial pages have been conservative for decades; a recent study found its news pages to be the most liberal in the mainstream media. Guess what: The Journal is the largest circulation paper in this country.) But I digress.

This means that the reality is it is the owners of these media outlets, not the reporters who control the show, both in print and on television. It's completely understandable that people prefer to hear, read and watch news from a position that supports their own personal biases, they want affirmation that "they" are the ones who are correct and the "other guys" are the ones who are wrong. There are still journalists out there that try to actually inform as to the varying sides of an issue but it is growing more rare.

The media did go after Palin, but so did the blogosphere and I believe that had an impact because our media is being impacted by the internet in their desire to keep readership...


Mark W Adams said...

When I was taking all thouse communication classes in college, one thing they drilled into us was the meaning of Marshal McLuhan's addage that "the medium is the message." It's 2-sided, both as the recipient something differently and is affected by the filter the message comes through, and the messenger will tailor his/her message in order to be most effective (presumably) in the chosen media, and further being aware of the likely audience using that particular media.

The upshot is that it is humanly impossible not to transmit or receive a message that is utterly without bias on some level. The fact of our common language alone colors the message I'm sending you - word choice, sentence structure, all that goes into it, and it's filtered by me before I hit send then refiltered by your understanding of language when you recieve it.

Add additional filters, which are all something that "bias" or change or add/subtract meaning from the message. You're a woman, the sum total of all your life experience goes into your interpretation of my message -- including the fact that you know I'm male and we've met and previously interacted. All that prejudices how you "read" this, and knowing that it also affects how I structure my message being aware of all our previous interactions.

Sure, that's all minor bias, not political, but even the political bias is there. I know that you know that we know we're generally on the same side, thus the LACK of hostility and/or persuasion attempts or accusations on my part. If we were political rivals, this comment might take on a completely different tone -- that's bias.

You can (and should) try to be fair. But you can never, ever eliminate all bias. You are who you are and can be nothing else but the sum total of your life experience. What you say will always reflect that.

It's one of the reasons I never pretended to be unbiased and proudly put the word "Liberal" in the Title of my blog. I am who I am, and couldn't shake my belief structure no matter how hard I try. Neither one of us are media elite pulling down 6 or 7 figure salaries from a major media conglomerate, and we have no need to pretend otherwise.

I don't mind Rush Limbaugh for being unashamably conservative. I do mind the other local folks on WSPD not only denying their Right Wing bias, but living in the fantasy world that there is such a place where bias doesn't exist. They are small minded little hypocrites.

John Warren said...

Vote Palin-Romney 2012 for their rightwing conservatisim.
In 2012 we must vote for Governor Sarah Palin to become our President and Governor Mitt Romney to become our Vice President starting on January 20, 2013 , because of Governor Sarah Palin's and Governor Mitt Romney's superior right wing conservative philosophy. Governor Sarah Palin's and Governor Mitt Romney's superior right wing philosophy is shown in that they are pro God and Christianity, pro life, pro marriage; pro guns-second amendment, pro low taxes, pro low government spending; pro small government, pro unintrusive government, pro traditional and Judeo Christian values; pro Bible reading and prayer in our public schools, pro Christians schools and private education , pro private and free enterprise; pro military spending, anti arms agreements with Russia, pro creation; pro nuclear, pro conservative supreme court judges, pro American sovereignty; pro capitalism, anti communist, anti socialist; conservative on immigration, and pro constitution

Lisa Renee said...

Mark, I agree with you that everyone has their own personal biases, where I disagree is I don't think the media should allow theirs to create scenarios on either side, that only one side is being told.

It's why Glass City Jungle is different from this blog, and there, unlike here, I try to refrain from my opinion being the focus. When I offer my opinion as a post, it's clearly marked that way - I'm trying for a balance of sharing releases/articles/information with a small smattering of my opinion. It is difficult, there are times I talk to my computer monitor...But to me the key is at least attempting to look at both sides and pointing out what's wrong and what's right about both...

I can't say what I wanted to do there has been successful in the way I'd hoped. The information being balanced and the readership numbers are consistent with my goals but not the commentary because I'm not supported by members of my own party when it comes to wanting to civilly discuss or debate "them" -- most Democrats prefer to only debate with Democrats which to me hurts us because we not only then don't demonstrate why we feel we are correct, but we miss out on the opportunity to demonstrate to the majority of voters in Lucas County who are neither party, why we are Democrats in the first place...

John Warren, commenting one time on one post is sufficient, you've left the same basic comment on several other posts and they will be removed.

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