November 25, 2008

Just a hunch

Keep in mind, the following is drawn from the thin air of my own speculation, but I'm thinking one of the reasons newspapers and similar media arms are circling the drain or completely in the shitter is because people are now so much more attuned to media hype that they read most headlines and just roll their eyes. I base this observation mostly on the fact I read most headlines and just roll my eyes. Maybe it's because I'm in my 30s?

Posted by Ryan at November 25, 2008 10:04 AM | TrackBack

I might be inclined to agree with you but I read something recently that said the most trusted news channel is Fox News and Rush Fucking Limbaugh is the most trusted radio personality. Sorry, America, dead wrong on both counts. Rush Limbaugh wouldn't know the truth if it crawled up his ass and chewed a summer home in his large intestine.

Posted by: Erik at November 26, 2008 01:59 AM

And comments like the one above tend to cause people to roll their eyes as well.

I do think there's some truth to what you're saying, Ryan. But the main reason is that you can get the news for free on the Internet, so why bother paying for dead tree? The Christian Science Monitor has figured this out.

Posted by: Mr. D at November 29, 2008 10:10 AM

Mr. D, Rush Limbaugh traffics in hyperbole, lies and utter distortions of reality. You are disputing this? Fox News is so far slanted to the right that many people consider them the media arm of the Republican party.

Roll your eyes all you like, I'll choose to get my news from less openly biased sources.

Posted by: Erik at November 29, 2008 04:10 PM

Erik, I don't think anyone actually denies Rush and Fox are right-leaning. It's the whole frothy mouth "wouldn't know the truth if it crawled up his ass and chewed a summer home in his large intestine," thing that basically prompts the eye-rolling. When people start chomping at the bit like that, it's kind of tough to take them seriously.

Personally, I don't watch Fox News and I don't listen to Rush, either. However, and I know SOME PEOPLE disagree with me on this, left-wing bias is pretty much rampant all over the more traditional media alternatives. There will no doubt be a shift in that bias as the Obama Administration eventual policies come under scrutiny, but the 2008 election was awash in the most unapologetic, in-the-bag-for-Obama media coverage imaginable. Given that, it's hardly surprising a large segment of the nation look to Rush and Fox News for a conservative salve to an otherwise-liberal national media. You can hate on them all you want; the point is, they have an audience for a reason, and it's not because they're simply stupid or uninformed, although that's what a LOT of people would like you to believe.

Posted by: Ryan at November 29, 2008 04:54 PM

Hey Ryan,

Your blog won't let me publish a comment about Fox News, so I have to leave it out of this response. It keeps flagging it for "questionable content."


Your list says that ol' Rush traffics in:

hyperbole, lies and utter distortions of reality. You are disputing this?

Let's take them one at a time.

Hyperbole? Sure. He's a commenter, no different from you or me except that for reasons that you don't seem to grasp, his comments attract a pretty vast audience.

Lies? I hear that all the time, but most times when people assert that Rush is lying, it's not about something where he is factually wrong but where their view of something doesn't comport with his.

Utter distortions of reality? See above.

I don't listen to Rush myself, mostly because I'm at work when he's on and his views aren't so interesting to me that I would grab a podcast or subscribe to his paid website. If I happen to be in the car when he's on, I might listen to him.

But to Ryan's crucial point, I know what Limbaugh's bias is. Limbaugh doesn't try to disguise it one bit. He's a conservative of a certain type. Ryan is a conservative of a different type. And I'm a conservative of a different type than either of them. If you were to get Ryan, Limbaugh and myself in a room, chances are we'd disagree on a number of topics.

And to your final point about "less openly biased sources," why are organizations that attempt to mask their biases more credible than organizations or individuals that are openly biased? Or do you mean that your as-yet unnamed sources are less biased generally? And how do you determine that, knowing that you have your own bias to correct for?

Posted by: Mr. D at November 29, 2008 07:57 PM

Not sure why it would flag Fox News for you, Mr. D, but not me. Then again, I haven't been able to figure out what triggers my comment filter for over four years. . .

Posted by: Ryan at November 29, 2008 08:39 PM

Ryan and Mr.D, I wrote a long response to the both of you but the comment filter wants me to rewrite it again and again to suit its capricious settings. Instead, I've posted the entire response on Intellectual Poison. Sorry for redirecting but really, Ryan, get your comment engine beat into compliance!

Posted by: Erik at November 30, 2008 10:39 AM

It's not up to me, Erik. It's up to the gods; I just sacrifice to them.

Posted by: Ryan at November 30, 2008 11:41 AM

Erik says on his own blog:

No, I'm not admitting anything of the sort, Erik. He's coming at the news from a particular, conservative, ideological viewpoint. And so are you. It doesn't make him a liar any more than it makes you a liar.

Limbaugh believes that limited government is better than big government. I agree with him on that.

Limbaugh also believes that the Republican Party has too often abandoned a principled commitment to the principles of limited government. And I agree with him on that, too.

Limbaugh believes that the Democratic Party, is, in the main, a force for larger government and statist solutions. I agree with him on that.

Would I rely on Rush Limbaugh as my primary news source? Of course not. And I don't.

I've seen enough of Keith Olbermann to know that, as a commenter on the news, he was a good sidekick to Dan Patrick at ESPN, but that he's a complete parody as a newsman. If you choose to take him at face value, we're just going to have to agree to disagree, because I won't be able to reach you and you surely won't be able to reach me.

Posted by: Mr. D at November 30, 2008 05:00 PM


Your comment software is really strange. It ate the quoted part of my response to Erik. Which was:

Mr.D, when you say something like "most times when people assert that Rush is lying" you are admitting, implicitly, that some of the time he is lying. Most of the time people misunderstand him and some of the time he's telling outright, utter lies that he knows are completely untrue because his job is to appeal to his audience that loves his demagogery.

That's what I was responding to.

Posted by: Mr. D at November 30, 2008 05:04 PM

I have to stress, again, it isn't MY comment software; it's whatever comment software the administrator utilizes, and since he hosts my blog free of charge, I'm really in no position to complain or make requests.

Posted by: Ryan at November 30, 2008 07:54 PM

Mr.D, you are defending someone I believe (and others have objectively studied and concluded) traffics in lies to suit his own ends. You are being intellectually dishonest in your defense of him, you skip over the points Iíve made with supporting evidence and go right to those things you agree with him on even though those things have nothing to do with the discussion (the relative honesty of his rhetoric). Demagogue 101. Thank you but I donít think Iíll be playing this game.

Ryan, sorry for pissing all over your comments.

Posted by: Erik at November 30, 2008 10:04 PM

Well Erik, it's pretty simple. I offered you the opportunity to agree to disagree, but apparently that's not good enough. You self-congratulatory "Thank you but I don't think I'll be playing this game" gives away the game you are playing.

Let me stipulate this again, in case you weren't clear -- you are perfectly free to believe what you choose to believe in re Limbaugh and the rest of it. Good for you. But citing Wikipedia is a mug's game.

And finally, if you are truly serious about saying that "I stand for allowing others to have their beliefs so long as they allow me to have mine," you might want to back off a bit. If you call me a demagogue for disagreeing with you on this particular issue, you might want to think a little harder about whether or not you really stand for allowing others to have their own beliefs. Based on the available evidence, it's pretty easy to believe that you don't.

Posted by: Mr. D at November 30, 2008 11:42 PM
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