Republican Media Bias

This won't come as a shock to anyone who has watched television news in the last couple decades, though it may come as a surprise to those who have been brainwashed by the right wing spin machine: The political media are biased towards the Republicans, not towards the Democrats.

A visual analysis of television presidential campaign coverage from 1992 to 2004 suggests that the three television broadcast networks -- ABC, CBS and NBC -- favored Republicans in each election, according to two Indiana University professors in a new book.

[...]

"We don't think this is journalists conspiring to favor Republicans. We think they're just so beat up and tired of being accused of a liberal bias that they unknowingly give Republicans the benefit in coverage," said [Maria Elizabeth] Grabe, who also is a research associate in political science at the University of Pretoria in South Africa. "It's self-censorship that journalists might be imposing on themselves."

[...]

In their research, Democrats were more likely to be subjects of the "lip-flap" effect ["where the reporter's narration is overlaid on video of the candidate talking"], while Republicans more often got the last word. GOP candidates were favored in terms of having the last say in all but the 2004 election. In 1992, the difference was distinctive with Republicans having the final say 57.9 percent of the time. In 1996, Republicans had eight times as many last-say opportunities as Democrats.

[...]

Findings for camera angle clearly illustrate the Republican advantage. Overall, Republican candidates were covered in more low-angle and fewer high-angle shots than Democrats.

These results may be written off by some as reading too much into camera angles and video editing. Indeed, there hasn't been a great deal of coverage of this study since it was released on Tuesday. Nevertheless, the next time Republicans start to whine about the coverage they are receiving from the establishment media, we'll have yet more evidence to throw in their faces, as well as those refs that they are playing inside the Beltway, showing that they in fact are the beneficiaries of the clear bias in reportage.

There's more...

Reminder: A Corrupt Media.

(cross posted at kickin it with cg and motley moose)

In recognition of the last hours of a disastrous 8 years and for some in the media the continual excusing of Bush and his 'legacy', I thought that I would pull out an old diary, dust it off and hopefully we can all be reminded about the total failure on the part of the media in its appeasement of Georgie.

Originally posted on 6/18/08

As some will note I have written several diaries now on the failure of the fourth estate during this primary season.  The reactions to these pieces were mixed from agreement, indifference and denial of any bias in the coverage.  But with the recent feeding frenzy of the press in response to former White House press secretary Scott McClellan's new book - nothing could be clearer: A CORRUPT MEDIA HAS FAILED.

Amongst other things, McClellan's asserts that the media's failings are primarily responsible for the rush to war in Iraq and complicit in enabling the Bush administration.

And through it all, the media would serve as complicit enablers. Their primary focus would be on covering the campaign to sell the war, rather than aggressively questioning the rationale for war or pursuing the truth behind it... the media would neglect their watchdog role, focusing less on truth and accuracy and more on whether the campaign was succeeding. Was the president winning or losing the argument? How were Democrats responding? What were the electoral implications? What did the polls say? And the truth--about the actual nature of the threat posed by Saddam, the right way to confront it, and the possible risks of military conflict--would get largely left behind...

If anything, the national press corps was probably too deferential to the White House and to the administration in regard to the most important decision facing the nation during my years in Washington, the choice over whether to go to war in Iraq. The collapse of the administration's rationales for war, which became apparent months after our invasion, should have never come as such a surprise. The public should have been made much more aware, before the fact, of the uncertainties, doubts, and caveats that underlay the intelligence about the regime of Saddam Hussein. The administration did little to convey those nuances to the people, the press should have picked up the slack but largely failed to do so because their focus was elsewhere--on covering the march to war, instead of the necessity of war.

He goes on to blame a liberal media bias, but that's a whole other story.  PBS's Bill Moyers devoted an entire show in April 2007, entitled Buying the War to answering the questions of a complicit media.

How did the mainstream press get it so wrong? How did the evidence disputing the existence of weapons of mass destruction and the link between Saddam Hussein to 9-11 continue to go largely unreported? What the conservative media did was easy to fathom; they had been cheerleaders for the White House from the beginning and were simply continuing to rally the public behind the President -- no questions asked. How mainstream journalists suspended skepticism and scrutiny remains an issue of significance that the media has not satisfactorily explored. How the administration marketed the war to the American people has been well covered, but critical questions remain: How and why did the press buy it, and what does it say about the role of journalists in helping the public sort out fact from propaganda?
But what's more interesting about the fallout of this book is the sudden Mea Culpa by some members of the press.

Katie Couric:
"... I'll start by saying I think he's fairly accurate. Matt, I know when we were covering it--and granted, the spirit of 9/11, people were unified and upset and angry and frustrated. But I do think we were remiss in not asking some of the right questions. There was a lot pressure from the Bush White House. I remember doing an interview and the press secretary called our executive producer and said, `We didn't like the tone of that interview.' And we said, `Well, tough. We had to ask some of these questions.' They said, `Well, if you keep it up, we're going to block access to you during the war.' I mean, those kind of strong-arm tactics were really...
CNN's Jessica Yellin on 360:
Yellin: I think the press corps dropped the ball at the beginning. When the lead-up to the war began, the press corps was under enormous pressure from corporate executives, frankly, to make sure that this was a war that was presented in a way that was consistent with the patriotic fever in the nation and the president's high approval ratings.
And my own experience at the White House was that, the higher the president's approval ratings, the more pressure I had from news executives -- and I was not at this network at the time -- but the more pressure I had from news executives to put on positive stories about the president.  I think, over time --

Cooper: You had pressure from news executives to put on positive stories about the president?

Yellin: Not in that exact -- they wouldn't say it in that way, but they would edit my pieces. They would push me in different directions. They would turn down stories that were more critical and try to put on pieces that were more positive, yes. That was my experience.

Washington Post's Dana Milbank::

Of course he's right.  We didn't do as much as we could have and the fact of the matter is we did raise these questions.  And I mean I guess what Scott`s just saying in a backwards way there is they were just doing a particularly good job of keeping the facts out of the public domain.

What's worse is as Eric Boehlert points out, the warning signs were provided by Senator Edward Kennedy, who largely was ignored by the press.

Specifically, back in September 2002, with the Bush administration and much of the Beltway media rushing to embrace war with Iraq, Kennedy delivered a passionate, provocative, and newsworthy speech raising all sorts of doubts about a possible invasion. Unlike today, the political press wasn't very interested in Kennedy or what he had to say about the most pressing issue facing the nation. Back in that media environment, being the voice of American liberals didn't mean much.
So what is the moral of the story?

Boehlert puts it best "let's not forget that it wasn't that long ago that the media did their best to ignore what Kennedy had to say. And when it ignored Kennedy, and when it ignored the voice of liberals, the press -- and the country -- paid a dear price."

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Biden wins debate, but Media insists that Palin won

The media just wants to force it that Palin won last nights debate. Every focus group (with the exception of the totally bogus focus group by FOX), and every post debate poll since the debate says that Biden won. Yet the media, and the dumbass pundits just continue to insist that Palin won.

Here's an example, look at this statistical data, for example:

                     Before    After
Biden's favorability  53        67
Palin's favorability  36        41
    Republican Men    67        73
    Republican Women  70        79
    Democratic Men    19        15
    Democratic Women  21        25

Looks pretty good for Biden, don't it? Well, here's the headline of the story: "Women on Palin: Even critics say she delivers; Researcher: Republican candidate boosted standing among female voters".

here's the link: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/27009491/#st oryContinued

Another example, the Today show with Amy Robach. The Today show pulls together a focus group of seven women undecided voters

Here's the data - sample

2004 Vote
5 Bush
1 Kerry
1 first time voter

Palin - 5 were Disappointed
Biden - 6 were impressed

Then listen to the discussion after it, with the pundits. They were raving about how well Palin did.

You can see the video by clicking on the above link - on the right hand side, under the picture of Sarah Palin, there is a button labeled "Launch".

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Worst Person In The Worrrrlllld.

Sure this will be made available youtuby style later but here's what the asshats were saying @8:25am, talking to Bernard Goldberg on "Fox and Friends".  Don't ask why I was watching.

Gretchen Carlson:  "51% of the people said that they felt that Joe Biden won, which is close, really close.  But the headlines said, "Biden wins.  I mean, is that what we're still up against?"

There's more...

COMCAST shows outrageous bias

by the way, people should know that a few months ago, COMCAST removed MSNBC from regular to PREMIUM.

Crossposted from Dailykos user, JLFinch

Go to "Top Picks" on your COMCAST On Demand menu.

You will see options for New Movies.

Then Hit Music.

Then Top Kids Shows.

Then an option for - REPUBLICANS.   With NO corresponding selection titled Democrats.

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Diaries

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