The easy media bias to spot is the Keith Olbermann, Caryn (Whoppie Goldberg) Johnson, frothing at the mouth kind of coverage or when you can compare how a so-called news person treats one candidate vs, the other (the Katie Couric, Charlie Gibson type). What is really difficult to spot is the most common kind, the subtle bias. Read the story below for a great example how the media has intergrated the McCain line into their “news” reports:
In which I point out some biased reporting
by Katie Allison GranjuSo I’m reading this supposedly straightforward, reported (meaning, it’s not an op-ed or blog post) news article on MSNBC today about McCain’s most current campaign strategy, and I run across this passage:
In an interview with CNN, McCain was asked about his campaign’s recent tactic of attacking Obama for his association with William Ayers, a founder of the radical Vietnam War-era Weather Underground, which was responsible for bomb attacks on federal buildings. Obama has denounced Ayers’ radical past and actions, which occurred when Obama was 8 years old. The two men subsequently served together on the board of a Chicago education foundation and live in the same neighborhood. Ayers hosted a small get-acquainted coffee for Obama when he first ran for public office in Illinois. “The fact is that Senator Obama was not truthful in telling the American people about his relationship. Very frankly, Dana, I don’t give a damn about an old unrepentant terrorist, but what I do care is telling the truth to the American people,” the Arizona senator said in response to a question from CNN correspondent Dana Bash.
The bolding is my doing. I used it to highlight two little asides in the reporter’s verbage that are completely unecessary and completely biased to try to make Obama look better in the face of his opponent’s specific criticism. The reporter has already noted that Bill Ayers’ terrorist actions took place during the Vietnam Era. We already get that this was a long time ago. The little detour about how Obama was “only 8 years old” is meant to drive the point home that there is no real link between Obama and Ayers. And then over-describing the political fundraiser that Ayers hosted for Obama as “a small, get acquainted coffee” (was the reporter actually present?) is yet another little dig at McCain’s allegation that Obama and Ayers share significant linkage. I note this reporter bias as someone who personally finds the Ayers issue irrelevant and annoying in the midst of national crises of historic proportions. I think McCain should find more meaningful things to talk about on the campaign trail. But to many Americans, the Ayers issue is not insignificant, and it’s not up to the reporter writing a supposedly straight news piece to take a point of view on the matter. I don’t see the biased reporting by the “liberal mainstream media” behind every tree that a lot of conservatives do, but I will call it when I do see it. And I see it here.