Thursday, October 09, 2008

Media Bias (minus Linky Love)

Just a quick esoteric rant, with few links source material -- in a hurry, sorry.

Watching "Interviews: 50 cents," Alex Chadwick's occasional interview series on Slate V, Slate's Video feed, he interviews a young, sort of lost-seeming guy who is looking to go into journalism. The guy says something to the effect that he doesn't agree with most of the policies of the current heads of government (hence explaining why he might like to cover a war, but not be in one), and then says, "But I guess if I want to be a journalist, I'm not supposed to have... beliefs, right?" Long pause as Chadwick apparently confirms the duty of an objective journalist to not have thoughts by not expressing any thoughts about the guy's question (which actually is understandable as a good interview tactic in this case), and the guy continues, "Right? You can't have political beliefs?" Chadwick now jumps in -- "You can have them, you can't express them..." They chat a bit longer, but...

WHAT the FUCK? Doesn't Chadwick see how self-apparently nonsensical that is? OF COURSE journalists have opinions -- so how does it help objectivity if they don't voice them, thereby making whatever biases they may carry more apparent for the discerning reader/listener to evaluate for themselves, AND subjecting them to public scrutiny, which can hone, refine, challenge, and improve one's grasp of concepts and world events? And how does NOT SAYING WHAT YOU BELIEVE change your actual degree of objectivity? For the sake of all that's... That otherwise intelligent people can continue to believe that SECRET JOURNALIST OPINIONS are better/more impartial than OPEN JOURNALIST OPINIONS that you can take into account for yourself is sort of beyond me at this point. I just want to sit down with Chadwick and Lehrer and some of these other media fools and figure out what exactly they think they're playing at, other than trying to project false impartiality by not voicing their actually partial thoughts?

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