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PostWatch: An irregular correction to the Washington Post

Brought to you by Christopher Rake


Tuesday, January 14, 2003
10:48 PM

Largely poor, uneducated, and easy to command... That's how Washington Post reporter Michael Weiskopf once described Christians, and I hear echoes tonight...

I took a look at MediaMinded and he excerpts John Leo quoting EJ Dionne on media bias. Leo:

Call it the daily disconnect between the newsroom and the general populace. Huge majorities of Americans oppose racial preferences, want immigration limited, resent benefits for illegal immigrants, support the death penalty, are morally troubled by cloning, oppose gay marriage, look favorably on the boy scouts, support parental-consent laws on abortion and want a ban on partial-birth abortion.

In the newsroom, huge majorities take the opposite opinions. When those opinions shine through, as they regularly do in framing and selection of stories, readers and viewers begin to look elsewhere for their information.

Dionne, appearing on CNN's "Reliable Sources," acknowledged that the media have had a bias, "the bias of the educated upper-middle class," which is "not so good," he said, for religious conservatives, unions and the poor.

Yes, and it's also not so good for the military, law enforcement, nonreligious conservatives and people who are proud of America despite its frequent blunders.

Dionne is blind to liberal bias in the mainstream media and it's one of those things you just have to marvel at. In his recent comments attempting to deny it, he had a very good point about other media--how talk radio is almost completely conservative, and how there's lively conservative comment on some cable news channels. But those outlets developed precisely because mainstream media was relentlessly liberal and for the most part still is, with huge audiences by the way, by all accounts larger than the alternatives. When I first heard Dionne cite a Rush Limbaugh apperance on network election coverage as an example that the networks are now conservative, I literally laughed out loud. But then I am a jolly fellow.

I think that for some liberals, the act of hearing a conservative point of view presented fairly in mainstream media is such a shock that they think the citadel has been taken over by the huns.

MediaMinded blogged ably on the topic last month.

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