Monday, July 28, 2008

Media Bias: It's not what you think

The next time someone tells you the media favor Barack Obama, you have my permission to threaten them with the ol' backhand.  

The popular myth that the media outlets favor Democrats just isn't true.  A recent study conducted by The Center for Media and Public Affairs found that coverage for Obama was significantly more negative (72%) than for McCain (57%).  So, it's been Obama, not McCain, who's been getting smacked around by the press.

Equally as eye catching is that Obama is getting far more coverage than McCain, albeit more negative.  McCain has been the invisible Republican nominee, but when he is in the news, the coverage is far more positive for him than for Obama.

There's also been a noticeable and surprising double standard this year.  Take for instance a story that popped up a few weeks ago regarding Cindy McCain and her unpaid property taxes.  To be fair to Mrs. McCain, the delinquent bill doesn't appear to be her fault.  But what if Barack Obama had been late on his taxes?  Or for that matter, what if Jeremiah Wright owed $6,000 in back taxes?  If you answered, "The press would have ridiculed Obama and associated him with criminals who refuse to pay taxes," you would win the prize.

Or what if Obama...

...repeatedly mentioned a country that hasn't existed in nearly 20 years?
... described Social Security as an "absolute disgrace?"

Obama would be hung on a cross and be subjected to relentless ridicule.  We can expect such bias from the state-run media (aka Fox News), but why are real news organizations presenting such slanted coverage of Senator Obama? 

Why?  The obvious answer is not a pretty one.  It's all about the money.  If they can portray this campaign as a real horse race, the media get much more air time for their egotistical talking heads, and of course they'll make big bucks at the same time on the advertising.  There, I said it. It's all about money and ego.  Real shocker, right?    

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