The nearly two-year-long Mueller investigation sent left leaning reporters and news organizations on a futile fishing expedition. In the end it provided further evidence of biased reporting when the results of the probe did not prove collusion on the part of President Trump. Meanwhile, a new survey conducted for the Columbia Journalism Review [CJR] showed that the level of trust in mainstream news sources is at an all-time low and that the end may be near for print journalism.
“It’s no wonder the public’s trust in the media has eroded,” says Brent Bozell, President of the Media Research Center near Washington, DC. “For nearly two years, liberal talking heads and reporters pushed the narrative that President Trump was guilty of ‘collusion.’ When Trump was exonerated, the media collectively reversed course. It’s unfortunate that dishonest, one-sided journalism has become the norm. Thankfully, the American public see right through it,” Bozell added.
CJR partnered with Reuters/Ipsos for the poll of 4,214 adults, which found that the media is at the bottom of the list of institutions in which the public has trust. Interestingly, the researchers noted that Democrats apparently are the only demographic group that “expressed positive confidence in the press.”
Meanwhile, a veteran, mainstream journalist, former CBS News correspondent Lara Logan, has accused her colleagues in the media of an outright leftist bias in their reporting.
“Logan confirmed what we already knew: ‘all the [media] coverage all the time on Trump is negative’,” says Dan Weber, president of the Association of Mature American Citizens [AMAC]. “Perhaps that is why Democrats have a favorable view of journalists, while most Americans say they don’t trust them.”
Logan expressed the notion that the media, at large, has an anti-Trump bias during an interview with Mike Ritland on his Mike Drop Podcast recently. She pointed out that “85 percent of journalists are registered Democrats.”
This is no surprising revelation, says Weber. “We’ve always known that the media leans left. Even the Washington Post admits that ‘the characterization of mainstream media newsrooms as left-leaning hives indeed has documentary backing.’ What’s new is that the media has abandoned its pretense of being impartial and open-minded. As Logan put it, reporters have ‘become political activists in a sense and, some could argue, propagandists.’ That’s the scary part.”
Just how prevalent is media bias? According to Investor’s Business Daily [IBF], “pretty much all of journalism now leans left.” Citing a Rasmussen poll conducted last fall, the newspaper reports that 45% of the likely voters” in the midterm elections believed “that when most reporters write about a congressional race, they are trying to help the Democratic candidate.”
Investor’s Business Daily also cited a study conducted by Arizona State University and Texas A&M University that showed even the majority of financial journalists now identify themselves as “somewhat liberal” or “very liberal.” Four-hundred-sixty-two financial reporters were surveyed and more than 58% of them turned out to be overwhelmingly liberal. Not long ago financial journalists had a reputation as “the most right-leaning and free-market-oriented among mainstream journalists.”
The study found that “liberal journalists are more likely to say it’s important that financial journalism promotes social or economic justice, which suggests that political persuasion impacts business reporting. It also discovered that liberal reporters outnumbered conservatives by 13 to one and that they felt that “promoting social or economic justice is an important objective of journalism.”
Seton Hall University professor of journalism Matthew Pressman says journalistic objectivity began to evolve during the McCarthy Hearings of 1954. And, in the 1960s the definition of objective reporting changed. Political activism became more pervasive and anti-war, equal rights and other protest movements were initiated. Journalists routinely began to report not “just the facts,” adding analysis and interpretation in their reports.
“This new understanding of objectivity attempted to draw a line between journalists’ professional judgments (O.K. to include in a news report) and their personal opinions (not O.K.),” Pressman explains.
News reporters are bound by a code of ethics, according to Weber. “They are supposed to stick to the facts. They should not be taking advantage of the stories they are covering to promote personal agendas. Editorials are for the editorial pages. It’s bad enough that anyone with a computer, a basic knowledge of grammar and a vivid imagination can be a reporter these days by posting so-called news stories on the Internet. But when mainstream reporters do it, we all lose. We lose confidence in the purpose and accuracy of the stories we read in the morning paper and those we watch on the evening news.”
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