Great post at Stop The ACLU, by Warner Todd Huston, tells us like it is: Old Media Whines That Palin is Mean to Them
Get the pity party violin music warmed up because Ezra Klein and Dave Weigel are whining that Sarah Palin has forced them, the press, into a “submissive role” because she is so mean to them.
Klein favorably cites the analysis of Weigel who whined that the “Palin problem” has “put the press in a submissive position:”
- The problem is that Palin has put the political press in a submissive position, one in which the only information it prints about her comes from prepared statements or from Q&As with friendly interviewers. This isn’t something most politicians get away with, or would be allowed to get away with. But Palin has leveraged her celebrity — her ability to get ratings, the ardor of her fans and the bitterness of her critics — to win a truly unique relationship with the press. She is allowed to shape the public debate without actually engaging in it. [...]
However, Klein’s whining about Palin aside, he does have a good point about the failure of the press to place the news in the greater context of the reality of the world even as he papers over the fact that newspapers are, indeed, working hard to pass lies as news:
- For one thing, newspapers work very hard to report things that are true, but they are less concerned with whether the overall impression from their reporting is a true impression. Shark attacks, for instance, happen very rarely. But if you report excitedly on every shark attack that happens, people will think they happen quite a bit. [...]
For instance, the “news” has been floating the idea that the recent unemployment numbers did not grow and newspapers have marked that as an “unexpected drop” in unemployment as if it’s all good news. However, few papers have bothered to mention that this has been a tiny drop in rates during a steady years-long rise in unemployment. The impression is that good news was had, but the facts prove otherwise. Context is ignored in order to make Obama seem a success.
Anyway, it is amusing to see the Old Media crying that Palin is messing with them like this. An unexpected Christmas present if there ever was one.
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