Thursday, February 21, 2008

The San Francisco Chronicle puts the boots to the Gray Lady.

You know you screwed up when the San Francisco Chronicle slams the New York Times. SF Gate is saddened by this hit piece because they love the Times, but they understand how damaging a politically motivated story can be to their profession. Unless a photo showing Senator McCain and this female lobbyist playing tonsil hockey, comes out in print this week, the journalistic reputation of the New York Times will take yet another body blow.

Can you say declining readership? I have no problem with a hit piece like this coming from MoveOn or a George Soros funded 527, this is politics and the people in it know these kinds of stories, fair or unfair are going to be published. But the New York Times, the Gray Lady? Say it ain't so.

I don't understand how the Times can claim to independent or non partisan. The Times should just come out and admit that 90% of the people in the newsroom and 100% of those in the editorial offices are liberal. We all know it, why try to keep up the facade?

If the Columbia School of journalism offered majors only in 'Progressive Journalism" and "Conservative Journalism" I would bet the ratio between the two would 95% to 5%. When you have that kind of 'group think' going on everyday, in the hallways, in the break rooms, in the editorial meetings, and in the management of a newspaper, it is almost impossible for someone inside that paper to spot their liberal bias. Too bad.

All the lip service given by the MSM to the wonderful concept of 'diversity' is just that, lip service. Please don't tell me about Bill Kristol, one opinion columnist does not make the Times diverse, it just shows that you can spot him a mile a way because he sticks out like a sore thumb.

The Times loves diversity when it comes to race, gender, and sexual orientation, but seems violently repulsed by political diversity. If your paper has every race represented equally, the correct amount of women to men and have a large portion of the GLBT community represented, but they are all liberals and progressives, they write and report with one voice.

A liberal voice.

The MSM had better figure this out, and quickly. Opinion is everywhere in our multi-media world, and its free. Why do I need to pay to read opinion dressed up as straight news? Oh, that's right, I don't.

The news business has to come to grips with the fact that people want talented writing, insight and someone who can explain a two hundred page Congressional report, or City Council meeting decision in a clear and honest manner. They really don't care about race or color or gender, they want to know if the reporter leans to the left or to the right so they can factor that into their understanding of the piece.

If Jim Rutenberg, Marilyn Thompson, Stephen Labaton, and David Kirkpatrick, the Times reporters who co wrote the McCain hit piece, had an identifier on their bylines, it would make for more informed reading.

For example;

I know it would be hard to fit that kind of byline into a narrow news paper column, but it sure would give the reader a little insight as to the political axe the writer is sharpening. The lesson here is, in a day and age when you can Google anything or anyone, as a reporter, your axe is going to show.

My advice to the MSM.
If you want to pick up you political axe, put down your reporter's pen.

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