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Media Watch: Headlines Tell the Story of Media Bias (and It Isn’t “Liberal”)


In a world where readers often skim stories, headlines are potentially powerful.  They also reveal more than a little about media bias, particularly that of the editors and publishers who approve them.

The false mantra of the “liberal media” was hatched by Republicans to persuade Americans that the media are biased. You know how it works.  Claiming liberal bias means that favorable coverage of Dems is discountable because the media supposedly love them anyway.  But when the media criticizes Dems, whoa!, those Dems are perceived as really terrible because their “own side” even bashes them.  When the media favor Republicans (most of the time), it’s because Repubicans supposedly deserve it.  Heck they even override, the supposedly negative opinion the press “has” of them so they must be really “worthy.”  But the magic is when the press criticizes Republicans.  It doesn’t take because they are supposedly biased.  Hence, the various Teflon Republican presidents (especially Reagan and Bush 2). Since they are “liberal,” all manner of ignoring Republican wrongdoing and shortcomings can be forgiven. So, it might be comical that Sarah Palin feels persecuted by the media when most of them, even now, have barely begun to report her many liabilities.  But it isn’t–because she is just too incompetent to be given the mostly-free ride she’s been given. One Katie Couric interview does not a fair media make.  Nor does a dogged Vanity Fair or Rolling Stone article or two. That John McCain did not fully vet her, instead deferring to religious fundamentalists to own the pick, is one of recent political history’s greatest scandals. One heartbeat away…Given the above, and everything we know about her, take a look at the headline this weekend:

Todd Palin Speaks (Sort of): The “First Dude” Interview

First Dude? Why would anyone from Huffington Post (HP) use the moniker designed to move Sarah Palin to the top of American politics (by assuming her secessionist husband is a “First Dude”)?  But here is HP doing just that.

There are more examples below the fold.

With the following headline, the supposedly progressive Huffington Post Runs with an AP headline, the same AP with the blatantly conservative Washington Bureau Chief, Ron Fortier, which has outrageously written the fall election off for Dems.  The AP and HP all but say: “Don’t even have an election. Swear in the Republicans”:

Speaker in Waiting Boehner Balances GOP Factions.  

Then there is an ad for an upcoming Special Report from CNN entitled “Make Room for the Tea Party.” Watch for it tomorrow morning, we are told.  Make way!  Move aside.  We don’t have to wait for the election.  Move over now!  CNN, which is almost as much in bed with the so-called Tea Party crowd as FAUX News, has some explaining to do.  But, what would anyone expect, while they still have ideologue Jack Cafferty on the payroll.

Courtesy of CNN we also have this on their politics page (and their religion blog too): Only a Third Say Obama is Christian.  Here we go again, polling on a lie.  They force an artificial wedge of Obama from “mainstream” Christians and perpetuate the us v them divisiveness.  It’s as if to say, “he’s not one of us.”  (Why the continued pretense that there is anything wrong with other faiths or non-European cultural heritage?)

CNN also ran this headline: CNN Poll: Number of People Saying Economy in Very Poor Shape on the Rise. Buried in the poll is news that voters blame Republicans over Dems 44 to 35 and that, when Bush’s name is added to the response options, respondents blame Bush (53%), with just 33.3 % blaming Obama.  Note that this afternoon’s on-air story about the poll made no mention of the Bush numbers, only the numbers making it look more negative for Obama.  

Several headlines with the supposed anti-incumbent meme appeared again over the past few days.  But as Rachel Maddow has persuasively shown, it is not the year of the anti-incumbent at all.  And there’s more bogus reporting of “generic” polls, when there is no real-life generic ballot.

The list of reporters, anchors and shows to boycott is too large to list, but I may yet try.  And the need for alternate media and independent technological means for transmitting stories (outside the reach of the anti-net-neutrality corporate media) has never been greater.  


*Footnote: I should say she’s a quarter governor because served half a term and performed half the responsibilities while sharing the rest with secessionist hubby, Todd)

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