Monday, July 12, 2010

Fear in the Media

Greenwald has some questions about standards in the media.

So common is this appellation that a NEXIS media search reveals that the word "disgraced" appears extremely close to the phrase "Eliot Spitzer" (within two words) a total of 394 times:

The problem is that conservatives don't get the same treatment.
By blindingly stark contrast, ever since he got caught hiring prostitutes to wrap him in diapers while campaigning on the basis of Family Values, the word "disgraced" appeared within two words of the name "David Vitter" a grand total of 4 times -- all from small blogs:

[Newt] Gingrich was so described a grand total of 5 times, none from major news outlets:

Alberto Gonzales, who was forced to resign as Attorney General in the wake of a major Department of Justice scandal, and who was revealed as one of the earliest authors of pro-torture memos, has had that term applied to him a grand total of 17 times.

Glenn wants to know "[w]hat accounts for this extreme discrepancy." I think it boils down to fear. The media is scared of being portrayed as having a liberal bias, so they go out of their way to demonize people on the Left while soft-pedaling conservative politicians. The noise machine from the Right led by Beck, Limbaugh, and Hannity make MSM media outlets cower in fear, worried that attacks from them will diminish their quickly dwindling audience. They don't realize that their extreme cowardice demonstrated in issues like this and their changing the use of the word "torture" is a bigger reason for their decline, not attacks from right-wing bloviators.

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