In the heated political season, it's worth noting that there are a lot of calls for news sources to simply reveal their bias, and then readers could make their decisions accordingly. Now apart from the reality that thousands of journalists would have to reveal their politics just to the left of Gus Hall--and good luck on that one--I would argue that this will not work for a very simple reason.
Many in the media have gone beyond simple bias (what do we report) to actively re-write the facts in a case. To wit, here's Mitch's comment on a recent "Politifact" article about charges that President Obama has allowed states to gut welfare work requirements. Since the Obama executive order illegally modifying the work requirements allows states to count non-work-related activities as work for the purposes of the 1996 law, it would seem to be an open and shut case, right?
Nope. Instead of looking at the executive order, Politifact simply takes the President's spin as the truth.
So what is going on here is that influential media sources--see Shot in the Dark for details--are more or less fudging the data, ignoring Thomas Sowell's dictum that we're all entitled to our own opinion, but not our own set of facts.
A great picture of this is the debate--of course it's still going on--about President Lincoln. Thomas DiLorenzo and Carl Sandburg have/had widely differing views on the man, but what came through--having read both--is that they are truly going from the same set of facts. It's simply the opinion--Sandburg views some things as a regrettable necessity, DiLorenzo as an atrocity--about the facts that differs.
So when someone suggests that all will be well if all simply note their biases, think about this. One can see through someone's bias, but if the very factual basis is assaulted, those labels do us no good. So it's not time for us to simply reveal our biases, but to come back to basic principles of honesty.
How a competing narrative forms - Great moments in furnitureYou might remember this moment. There was Clint Eastwood, iconic film star and hobbyist politician, appearing on the stage of the...
53 minutes ago