June 08, 2004
Testing for Bias
This morning the Sunday before Memorial Day I picked up the Asheville Citizen-Times and started looking through national news coverage. You know, the stuff that is filtered through the lens of liberal bias long before it even reaches local papers, which rarely revise what they get off the press service wires.
In a story on Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfelds remarks to the graduating class at West Point, here is the lead paragraph:
Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld, making no mention of the prisoner abuse scandal that has led to calls for his ouster, told a cheering crowd of graduating cadets Saturday that they will help win the global fight against terror.
Lets see how could there be any bias in that? Every word is true, right?
Except for this: The first thing mentioned, the lens through which we are forced to view the rest of the story, is something that did not happen and that only an idiot would expect might happen: Rumsfeld mentioning the prisoner-abuse scandal at a commencement address at West Point.
The lead, in other words, is not the graduation that is supposedly being reported, but rather Rumsfelds failure to resign in the face of events that happened weeks ago.
How is Rumsfelds not resigning news? Its mentioned in this story only because the reporter does not want to let go of it.
This is bulldog journalism: Once you get hold of a story, you never loosen your grip until your victim dies at least politically.
Read it all. Reprinted in The Ornery American.
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