The Media's Myopic Partisanship

Posted: Dec 12, 2012 10:10 AM

Below, this site has documented the violence perpetrated by pro-union thugs relating to the passage of right-to-work legislation in Michigan yesterday.

But check out the major MSM news sites the day after some pretty spectacular violence.  As Scott Johnson points out, The New York Times piece completely misses many of the salient details, most notably, the thuggery.  This morning, CNN is running a news analysis on why unions are losing power; there's nothing on its home page discussing the pro-union violence.  Nothing to see on the LA Times home page, either; its piece delicately references "acrimony" in the wake of the governor signing the legislation.  The Washington Post's home page highlights a column by Harold Meyerson decrying the decreaing power of unions; guess what? There's a piece in the Business section -- this time, the debate is not "acrimonious;" it's "contentious."

This is what "acrimony" and "contention" look like . . .

as a mob overturns the Americans for Prosperity tent with people inside:

and as Steven Crowder, a Fox News contributor, is attacked.

The problem here is the same as it is with getting out the GOP's position on the fiscal cliff, and so much else.  Regular -- i.e. not politically involved or active -- Americans hear nothing about any of this.

Sure, we know about it, because we read Townhall and Powerline and Instapundit and National Review Online, etc., etc. We then tend to extrapolate our knowledge onto others.  But they don't know about it because the MSM is simply refusing to cover it.Yet we all know what would have happened had this sort of violence erupted as part of a Tea Party protest.  It would be all over, and everyone (including those who pay only marginal attention to politics) would have been well aware of it.  Amazing: The press will attribute other violence, mistakenly, to disfavored groups like the Tea Party, but when there's actually evidence of violence being perpetrated by a favored group like unions, there's nothing but polite silence (or, in the case of the too-trendy-for-words cultural elite, an unabashed proclamation of total hypocrisy).  

When everyone discusses the GOP "branding problem" -- or the reasons why the country has been resistant to conservative ideas -- part of the reason is that they're simply not exposed to them in any sort of neutral or positive way in their daily lives, thanks to the press's myopic partisanship. And even though most Americans know, rationally, that the press is biased to the left, it's natural that many unaffiliateds, with busy lives of  their own, will simply accept its tone and treatment of the news as a baseline on how to understand the news of the day and its major players.

Having fallen to new depths of partisanship in protecting and defending the Obama presidency during the reelection campaign, it's as though the press has simply declined to return to its traditional (at least since Watergate) adversarial role in hte aftermath.  

With all the good that has come with the rise of new media, talk radio and Fox News, there is a downside: The MSM (the source from which the large majority of regular Americans get their news) now have a convenient rationale for ignoring stories with ideological overtones that discomfit them: Namely, that they're being covered elsewhere.  How convenient.

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