Thursday, March 21, 2013

It’s the truth, even if it didn’t happen

On my YouTube channel I found an interesting exchange between two commentors on one of the videos.
Commentor 1
Democrats don't care for the facts. They follow the old adage "One lies and the other swears to it..." The other being the media.  and so weak minded people are convinced that the "lie" is the truth.
Commentor 2
It is in fact "the facts" that the Democrats are interested in. Clearly not a large enough number to have stopped the liars and thieves that run the Republican party.  [commentor 1] Instead of just pointing fingers how about distributing some "facts" to justify your pejorative? How about the Iraq war? Jack Abramoff? Tom Delay? Plame? etc. You are showing your ignorance in an astounding fashion. The media is profoundly ruled by the right wing and their corporate agenda that the truth is forever gone.
My reaction:
LOL!  Oh you really meant that?
So let's take Commentor 2's arguments and consider each point.  Is what he presents really a collection of objective "facts", or misleading subjective reality?

"How about the Iraq war? Jack Abramoff? Tom Delay? Plame?"

I am not sure where he is going with that.  As an argument for "Republican lies" I find this stream of consciousness particularly un-convincing.

The usual liberal theme on Iraq was that there was no reason to go into Iraq.  An argument that will go on for eternity.  Was there a tie (of mutual support) between Sadaam Hussein and Al-Queda?  Not particularly.  They didn't really like each other either.  Sadaam was a singular threat to peace in the middle east, and murderous to people on a horrific scale. Intelligence agencies from France to Russia thought and reported he was nearing a nuclear capability. The latter of which was essentially "disproven", once it was all over. The world is a far better place with him removed.

For a Jack Abramoff, I'll raise you a Norman Hsu, John Corzine, Jesse Jackson Jr, Steve Westly And Steve Spinner.

For a Tom Delay there is Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich,  Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, Senator John Edwards, New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin and the list goes on.

Valerie Plame was "outed" by Richard Armitage, who is often ascribed as being a Democrat (though that seems unlikely) working for Secretary of State Colin L. Powell.  The left's insistent theme was that Joe Wilson's statements undermined the Bush administrations arguments for invading Iraq (never mind his subsequent statement was at odds with his own congressional testimony about Saddam's interests in uranium rich yellow cake) causing a reprisal against his wife. Liberals claimed that it was Karl Rove who "outed" her, and could never get over the fact it wasn't. In fact they already knew she wasn't a covert operative and had found out the name of the leak. Armitage wasn't punished, didn't face trial, and wasn't even indicted. He said he was sorry, and the news moved on, while the trial continued.

The real message is that corruption is not really tied to political ideology.  All mankind falls short of righteousness irrespective of ideology.

The media is profoundly ruled by the right wing and their corporate agenda that the truth is forever gone.

This is a theme that makes me laugh every time it is spoken. There is so much evidence to the contrary that it cannot be seriously thought true.  It only "feels true" because so many people cannot distinguish the difference between "relative bias" and "absolute bias".  Comparing Keith Ellison to Collin Peterson may make Peterson seem conservative, but in any real analysis Collin Peterson is still liberal, with a 61% progressive advocacy score.

So starting first with real factual analysis of media bias:

Media Bias Is Real, Finds UCLA Political Scientist
By Meg Sullivan December 14, 2005  
"I suspected that many media outlets would tilt to the left because surveys have shown that reporters tend to vote more Democrat than Republican," said Tim Groseclose, a UCLA political scientist and the study's lead author. "But I was surprised at just how pronounced the distinctions are."
"Overall, the major media outlets are quite moderate compared to members of Congress, but even so, there is a quantifiable and significant bias in that nearly all of them lean to the left," said co-author Jeffrey Milyo, University of Missouri economist and public policy scholar.
Five news outlets — "NewsHour With Jim Lehrer," ABC's "Good Morning America," CNN's "NewsNight With Aaron Brown," Fox News' "Special Report With Brit Hume" and the Drudge Report — were in a statistical dead heat in the race for the most centrist news outlet.  Of the print media, USA Today was the most centrist.
That was 2005, and the bias has become even more pronounced since then.

Washington Whispers Poll: Fox, O'Reilly Most Trusted News Sources
By Paul Bedard May 20, 2011
In a stunning rejection of network news and nightly news anchors, cable news, driven by the Fox News Channel and mouthy Bill O'Reilly, is now the top most trusted source—by a mile.
In a new poll from Boston's Suffolk University, more than a quarter of the nation says Fox is tops when it comes to who they trust the most and O'Reilly is the most believable.
Book: Liberal Media Distorts News Bias
By Paul Bedard June 16, 2011
The liberal bias of the mainstream media tilts so far left that any outlets not in that political lane, like the Drudge Report and Fox News Channel, look far more conservative than they really are, according to a UCLA professor's new book out next month.
"Fox News is clearly more conservative than ABC, CBS, CNN, NBC and National Public Radio. Some will conclude that 'therefore, this means that Fox News has a conservative bias,'" he writes in an advance copy provided to Washington Whispers. "Instead, maybe it is centrist, and possibly even left-leaning, while all the others are far left. It's like concluding that six-three is short just because it is short compared to professional basketball players."
What's more, he says, "this point illustrates a common misconception about the Drudge Report. According to my analysis, the Drudge Report is approximately the most fair, balanced, and centrist news outlet in the United States. Yet, the overwhelming majority of media commentators claim that it has a conservative bias. The problem, I believe, is that such commentators mistake relative bias for absolute bias. Yes, the Drudge Report is more conservative than the average U.S. news outlet. But it is a logical mistake to use that to infer that it is based on an absolute scale."
And what about that ever popular meme that Fox viewers are less informed an assertion by comedian Jon Stewart (though the left thinks of him as "astute political commentator")
Similar single-issue reports exist on subjects like global warming, Obamacare, and the Ground Zero Mosque. If these were the only polls that existed on the knowledge of Fox News viewers, then one could see how Stewart could confidently claim Fox News viewers are always the most misinformed.
But all of these polls were conducted by ideologically liberal organizations out to prove that Fox News is biased and that conservatives are misinformed. What if a more centrist organization asked more factual questions on a broad array of issues? Turns out the Pew Research Center does such a poll and on a regular basis. And the results contradict Stewart’s claims.
Second: anecdotal evidence that even the son of Ted Turner, who has worked at CNN in the past, agrees that CNN is basically un-watchably liberal, and watches mostly Fox News.  Which leaves open the question of where that would place the ridiculously liberal MSNBC/MediaMatters.

So in review, it would seem the commentors facts and  assertions are dreadfully lacking as useful facts for his argument against Republicans.  Although it does fit handily in as baseless political strategy for discrediting the opposition.  All that aside, it does show the very real problem with extensive media bias and induced subjective reality.  People become easily confused about reality vs reinforcement induced beliefs.  Three people telling you something (reinforcement) does not make it true. But it will seem to be.

It’s the truth even if it didn’t happen.  –Ken Kesey, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest

For further examples:
PEW Study Winning the Media Campaign 2012 November 2, 2012
Both Candidates Received More Negative than Positive Coverage in Mainstream News, but Social Media Was Even Harsher

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