It’s the now all too common utterance of right-wing media and their audience, morphing slightly to nearly synonymous statements such as “fake news” and “lamestream media” by the typical caller to conservative outrage radio.
But curiously, when those phrases are uttered in reference to the supposed liberal bias of mainstream news reporting, details tend not to follow. What exactly is biased about that particular story? How is it slanted to unfairly promote a left-wing political message?
To find actual answers to these questions is difficult, if not impossible. Because those who promote the idea of a supposed leftist media come from an actual biased position themselves, thus tainting their claim with accusations that do not hold up analytically. These usually involve:
1. Condemning non-news sources that have a different opinion then the typical conservative.
2. Citing examples of liberal bias from sources that are openly liberal and don’t claim to be impartial or balanced.
3. Taking an extreme comment, position, or action of a liberal or even non-liberal fringe player, and attempting to portray it as a common thought or behavior of the left.
4. Taking an initial inaccurate report by a mainstream news organization that had been quickly retracted or corrected, yet promoting and spreading the original erroneous story without noting its retraction/correction.
5. Discounting the reality that our corporate media doesn’t run stories based on bias, they run them based on profit. A profit-driven corporate media actually has the most to gain by promoting conservative ideals which support low taxes on corporations, deregulated markets, and are silent on the ill-effects of media consolidation.
Rather than any sizable existence of a liberal slant in our corporate media sources, one can easily notice the magnitude of right-wing sources that are purposefully slanting facts, figures, and news stories to frame a false political narrative. This is the bias we must look beyond. Fox News, Prager U, Sean Hannity, Mark Levin, Rush Limbaugh, Ben Shapiro, and hundreds of other right-wing sources share in this guilt, as the bias they exert far exceeds any political slant of the mainstream media.
These conservative sources base much on their commentary from the reverberation of audible moans and gripes of influential right-wing groups and think-tanks, founded and supported by a handful of the ultra-wealthy on behalf of their own interests. Charles and David Koch, John Olin, Richard Mellon Scaife, Foster Friess, and Sheldon Adelson are among the leading cast of many that are shouting out their part.
What results is a promotion of lower taxes for themselves, the eroding of the pesky consumer protections that hurt their bottom line, and a transfer of government functions to the private entities that are often owned and operated by those very same wealthy individuals.
To achieve these means, they must find a way to connect to a populace of which they have little in common with. They do so by promoting deeply held fringe issues that many conservative Americans hold closely and with passion (Gays, God, Guns, Good Old Days, etc.), and then supplement those ideals with an unrelated and false notion that government is intrinsically corrupt, wasteful, and ineffective, and therefore only through private enterprise can American utopia be achieved.
Yet ironically, it is our allowance of our representatives to be influenced and captured by the private sector that has provided the seeds by which our government dysfunction grows.
A chain of ideological beliefs held by these billionaire-funded think tanks, and the completely unrelated forementioned fringe issues held by many Americans now fuse together. And inexplicably you have many decent people now denouncing unions and minimum wage laws to protect corporate profits. They reject the idea of global warming to the appeasement of Exxon/Mobile and Koch Industries. They promote what George Bush correctly denounced as “voodoo economics”, insuring that the rich get richer and the poor stay poor, increasing the inequality gap all at the expense of the economic interests of the common American. They are on board with massive government deregulation, which historically has lead to environmental catastrophes, monumental Wall-Street collapses, and the loss of human life.
Beyond The Bias wishes to combat the warped dogmatic worldview promoted by neo-conservative rhetoric, preached by those who bear little semblance to the party of Eisenhower. Their hopes in funding the think-tanks and politicians on the right, is that their sentiment will enter an national echo-chamber. It miseducates many decent people using everything from talented radio personality to fake universities and billionaire-founded think-tanks, projecting their biased and corrosive perspective as gospel.
One needs to see this right-wing distraction and look Beyond The Bias. ■