by Jeff Swanson
Let me dredge up a little something from the not-so-distant past; remember Candy Crowley? I know, I know…water under the bridge. Correcting Mitt and all during the debate. It takes a lot to get an inherently unlikable guy elected. Candy was just doing her part to help Obama get elected.
Newsweek, the formerly venerable publication, has provided us with cover stories such as; Why are Obama’s Critics So Dumb, The Obama Conquest (subtitled ‘Lucky General or Master of the Game’), The God of All Things and the recent humdinger, The Second Coming. Throw in a couple of halo’d pictures and you have hero worship.
It’s no wonder that Newsweek is DOA in print format. I used to have a subscription a good many years ago. Now? Well, the Huffington Post is free if I’m looking for blatantly biased liberal content. At least HuffPo is honest about it.
According to Gallup in September 2012, “Americans’ distrust in the media hit a new high this year, with 60% saying they have little or no trust in the mass media to report the news fully, accurately, and fairly. Distrust is up from the past few years, when Americans were already more negative about the media than they had been in years prior to 2004.” and further noted, “This year’s decline in media trust is driven by independents and Republicans. The 31% and 26%, respectively, who express a great deal or fair amount of trust are record lows and are down significantly from last year…Independents are sharply more negative compared with 2008, suggesting the group that is most closely divided between President Barack Obama and Republican Mitt Romney is quite dissatisfied with its ability to get fair and accurate news coverage of this election.”
Media Bias is not a breaking news story but a little post election media bias analysis can’t hurt. Specifically with the President.
“In the final week of the 2012 presidential campaign, Barack Obama enjoyed his most positive run of news coverage in months…Only during the week of his nominating convention was the treatment in the press more favorable,” stated the Pew Research Centers’ Journalism site. Not shocking. Pre-election positive stories can only help to propel a candidate. The ultimate desire of the Mainstream Media (MSM)
What of Mitt Romney? Stated Pew, “For Mitt Romney in the final week, the tone of coverage remained largely unchanged from the previous two weeks.”
Groovy. At least Romney’s coverage didn’t get worse. You’d have assumed the media would release the attack hounds as they carried the Obamawater.
Not so fast…further stated Pew about Romney’s overall coverage, “Negative stories in the press outnumbered positive ones 33% to 16%.” Oh. The hounds were already roaming the grounds looking for Romney blood anyway.
This is not a postmortem of the election but it does set a reasonably empirical baseline for bias.
Ever the victim, a big, wet, sloppy press isn’t enough for Obama, “…one of the biggest problems we’ve got in how folks report about Washington right now, because I think journalists rightly value the appearance of impartiality and objectivity.”
Jeez, where to you start with that one?
If the press were actually objective, and we’ve proven they aren’t, that’s a problem? According to Obama, the answer is yes, “On almost every issue, it’s, “Well, Democrats and Republicans can’t agree”—as opposed to looking at why is it that they can’t agree. Who exactly is preventing us from agreeing?”
The President wants the press to blame someone (other than himself). This is key, not only is positive coverage not enough for President Obama, he needs the media to do his attacking for him. He doesn’t want to get his hands dirty. Mind you, he isn’t even complaining about Fox and Rush. He wants the MSM to be his lapdogs.
Didn’t Pew say Romney’s coverage was largely negative? I’d recently written about Obama’s propensity for narcissism and quoted Linda Martinez-Lewi, Ph.D., “Narcissists never play fair. They have learned since early childhood to take advantage of everyone.”
The press are willing suckers in the Obama bidding. They are attack dogs for Republicans, yet they become docile puppies in the lap of Obama.
Why? Fox News. The root of all society’s evils.
In review of all this Obamalove from the MSM, Peter Wehner of Commentary wrote, “…A combination of factors, I think. One is the rise of Fox News. For decades progressives had a monopoly on news, which meant they were content to slant the news but not routinely cross the line into advocacy. But now that Fox News has offered not only a different perspective, but a popular one, journalists may feel they must, in order to compensate for their loss of influence, increase their liberal advocacy.” Wehner went in further to detail, “He is liberal, Ivy League, and a person of color. That is simply too powerful of a combination for the elite media to resist.”
A cable news outlet has created all this? Possibly. I don’t disagree with Wehner though. Fox made it possible for the MSM to declare war. Fox has long been at the top of the cable news game having bested all other outlets for a decade plus straight!
Why is any of this important?
Recall the statistic in the beginning of this post. Confidence in the MSM is way down. Sure, among liberals, it’s nice and steady but liberals are only a portion of the electorate.
As conservatives, we’ve long looked at media bias and harped, complained, belly-ached along with a few other ways to whine. We haven’t looked at this as an opportunity.
Yes. It is an opportunity. It’s why Fox has dominated cable news. It’s why Al Gore’s Current TV died and is being reincarnated as Al Jazeera. I say let the press give the President even more big sloppy kisses. Let the President complain that, in effect, press complicity isn’t enough. They must now be worshippers.
Let it all happen.
The confidence in the MSM will continue to plummet. As has been the rise of Fox News, has the confidence in the otherwise liberal media fallen. Let Obama go along for that ride. Recall that Obama’s numbers ain’t all that stellar.
There is opportunity in the ‘leftward-ization’ of the media.
That opportunity is not to complain about the media coverage but to simply ignore it. The electorate mostly does. Whining about the media reporting on Behghazi et al, as I have done, is not a good use of effort.
Skip the MSM altogether. Sure, do the George Stephanopolis interviews. This is not the main message vehicle or even the main opportunity for Conservatives. How can it be? It’s failing in the eyes of Americans.
Candy Crowley, Newsweek, Current TV have all backed themselves in to irrelevance and a slow decline.
Just let it happen.