Friday, March 12, 2010

Media Bias In Action, Again

A succinct and very true comment from Media Matters:

"Watching the elite Beltway press actually rally around Fox News last year after the White House called it out as an illegitimate outlet for real news was one of the saddest journalism spectacles in recent memory. Recall that during the Bush years, the GOP White House often cooked up allegations and lashed out at prominent (i.e. genuine) news organizations, such as NBC and the New York Times, and I don't recall anybody rallying around them.

But when a Democratic administration called out Fox News for what it really is, a GOP propaganda tool...the same D.C. press corps played defense for Murdoch's dishonest empire and actually demanded Dems back off."

Too bad, however, that they couldn't go on to deal with the real reason for this disgraceful degeneration in our nation's press:

"But I think the huge majority of it is explained quite simply: fear or the 'liberal media bias' charge."

No, no, no. That is not the answer, as I have been insisting now since the mid-1990's. Reagan, in the mother of all deregulation, made it possible for virtually our entire traditional media to fall into the hands of large corporations. I know I am probably going to get this statistic slightly wrong, but I remember reading that, in 1970, 85% of all major news outlets were owned by families or small companies; by 2000 that number had been totally reversed: over 80% are now owned by large corporations. The "press" in this country has now become nothing but a corporate propaganda factory, whose main purpose is to keep in power the party that they own. That is the real story of media bias; it is the reason why every politician who tries to do the decent thing faces such an uphill fight, while every corrupt sellout to the rich is abetted every step of the way.

It is the reason why Obama is having such a hard time repairing the damage that the Republicans have done, it is the reason people think that having a medical care system like every other industrialized country is communism, it is the reason that wars and tax cuts for the rich don't have to be paid for but programs that actually benefit the American people are presented as savage attacks on our fiscal stability.

It is a major part of the reason this country is falling apart, and it does not help when even liberal press critics are afraid to face the true dimensions of the problem.

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