Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Life Inside the Bubble

It has got to be tough when the Free Market Place of Ideas scares you. A new poll tells us:

-Democrats trust everything but Fox. Republicans don't trust anything but Fox. And independents don't trust much of anything.

For Democrats 73% trust PBS, 64% NBC, 61% CBS, 60% CNN, 56% ABC, and 22% Fox. For Republicans 67% trust Fox, 29% PBS, 22% CNN, 21% NBC, 17% ABC, and 15% CBS. For independents 44% trust PBS, 36% Fox, 34% CNN, 33% NBC, 27% CBS, and 26% ABC.

For starters Fox is a throw back to the old days when about every town had at least two newspapers – one controlled by each party. It is not a new model, but it is an extension of the Republican Party. Professional non-partisan media outlets came about through progressive era reforms from the early 1900s. The thinking behind the reform was to treat News more as a science by objectively reporting facts.

Bill O’Reilly tells us that he thinks folks can tell the difference between Fox’s Opinion programs and Hard News programs. I am not so sure. So I can see why folks are leery about looking at Fox as a source of trustworthy news instead as a source of (partisan) infotainment (which it is) because it is a throwback to the old days. The difference between Fox and media outlets from the 19th Century is that Fox does not admit it a partisan operation.

[h/t] Steve Benen

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