The newspeak of George Orwellian Bush
As we’ve been hearing about the liberal bias of the media for decades, how is it that rightwing owners can’t break the habit of hiring leftwing content providers? Why would they have such a peculiar habit?
Well, the answer is so simple it sometimes gets overlooked: The liberal bias charge is mostly bogus. While it’s true that individual reporters have their leanings, as we all do, the notion that most reports from the mainstream media are deliberately tilted to the left is absurd.
Yet, there are two good reasons a lot of people buy that notion: One is that it gets repeated so many times some people accept it, just as they swallow everything else Madison Avenue dishes out with repetitive campaigns. The other is that many want to believe it, because it facilitates their need to feel victimized, while allowing them to dismiss ideas they don’t like, or don't understand.
In “Reign of Error,” columnist Paul Krugman is depressed that a new Harris poll says 50 percent of Americans believe Iraq really had weapons of mass destruction when it was invaded in 2003. That figure is up from 36 percent in February of 2005, in spite of all the international reports that say nothing was found in Iraq to justify the “imminent threat” to America described by President George Bush, Vice President Dick Cheney, et al, in the run-up to the invasion.
“...It’s hard to imagine what the world looks like to the large number of Americans who get their news by watching Fox and listening to Rush Limbaugh, but I get a pretty good sense from my mailbag. Many of my correspondents are living in a world in which the economy is better than it ever was under Bill Clinton, newly released documents show that Saddam really was in cahoots with Osama, and the discovery of some decayed 1980s-vintage chemical munitions vindicates everything the administration said about Iraq's weapons of mass destruction.”
Of course, a third reason to toss that "liberal bias" red herring into the stream of discussion is to simply do as much political mischief as possible by muddying the water.