Objectivity Is Not Stupidity: The Culpability of the Mainstream Media in the Government Shutdown
From Bill Moyers:
Beltway reporters who see their professed neutrality as a higher ground bear an enormous amount of responsibility for encouraging this perversion of democratic governance. With a few notable exceptions, the media have framed what Jonathan Chait called “a kind of quasi-impeachment” in typical he said-she said fashion, obscuring the fact that the basic norms that govern Congress have been thrown out the window by a small cabal of tea party-endorsed legislators from overwhelmingly Republican districts. The media treat unprecedented legislative extortion as typical partisan negotiations, and in doing so they normalize it.
But it’s not normal.
I keep seeing this, too, particularly in the national New York Times coverage and the local Seattle Times coverage. The latter has been particularly bad at the false equivalence: a kind of, “Oh can't those two get along?” exasperation. Those two being Pres. Obama and the full Congress, rather than one house of Congress, rather than one faction of one party of one house of Congress.
Is the coverage getting better? Some say so. But it's taken awhile, too long, and not just the country but the truth has been sacrificed in the meantime.
This is not rocket science, kids. The job is pretty easy:
- What is the thing?
- Describe it.
This, for example:
A long time coming.