Is It Up To the Media to Determine When the Public Has “A Right to Know?”

by lewwaters

typewriter-2For some years now, our media has basked in the glory of how they brought down the corrupt presidency of Richard Nixon back in 1974, causing him to be the only sitting president to resign office, so far.

In the succeeding years they became more and more focused on the conservative right, ignoring what the liberal left was doing and in fact, became little more than mouthpieces for the Democrat Party with their extreme bias against Republicans and anything conservative.

Cries of bias aimed at them were scoffed at and ridiculed, written off as sour grapes. Fox News came along and finally offered a real objective news source and they too have been ridiculed, lambasted and denigrated by the more lamestream media sources that can find no wrongdoing on the part of Democrats, but can blow anything concerning the GOP far out of proportion.

Locally, we have the Columbian, referred to on this blog as the “Lazy C” due to their bias and lack of interest displayed in several issues, not the least of which has been the conservative ‘push-back’ against an ever intrusive and expanding government under Barack Obama and the Democrat Party.

Calling themselves the “Tea Party,” after the Boston Tea Party event that preceded the American Revolution, people formed rallies and attended town hall meetings in opposition to the rapid spending increase and takeover of our Healthcare system proposed by Obama.

The media and even the Lazy C saw little merit in citizens exercising their first amendment right to free speech and in petitioning their government. Even though some 40% of those joining in with the Tea Party folks were Democrats or Independents, the group was quickly demonized as Republican, even when they stood up against the GOP.

Lazy C editorial page editor John Laird, later in December 2012 categorized them as “Correctly assuming in the spring of 2009 that the name ‘Yelling Party’ might stifle recruiting, reformists opted for the more patriotic brand ‘Tea Party.’ They breached the fortress of civility around the time of the April 15 federal income tax deadline. Their seeds of belligerence sprouted as 2009 wore on.”

In contrast, the ‘Occupy movement” that took over parks for weeks at a time, violated laws, thumbed their noses at elected officials, refused to yield to Police and that physically assaulted more than one person, were given glowing praise as “not a movement against authority, this is not a movement against police, this is a peaceful movement of awareness,” in the pages of the Lazy C.

To be fair, even though some came prepared and were itching to take over Esther Short Park at the Oct. 15, 2011 rally, that one event was largely peaceful, unlike just about every other Occupy even seen around the country.

For some reason left unexplained, the media saw the nationwide group of malcontents as rightfully enraged and merely engaging in protected speech, unlike the Tea Party events a couple years earlier who were seen as belligerent and argumentative, even though no Tea Partiers ever stood up to Police or took over any parks for weeks at a time.

Words of being unfairly targeted and maligned by the media were equally scoffed at and ridiculed in the biased lamestream media, including the Lazy C.

Even as word leaked out how Tea Party groups were unfairly targeted by the Obama Administration IRS, the editorial pages of the Lazy C remained largely silent, even though they did run a couple Nationally Syndicated columns expressing disagreement over it.

But then, it expanded to how members of the media were also being targeted for extra scrutiny, having their phones calls recorded and emails copied and suddenly, we see the Lazy C now concerned with the column, In our view: Congress: Pass Shield Law addressing a proposed “media shield law” protecting reporters and whistleblowers.

The column says, “It’s important to realize that a shield law protects more than just reporters; it also guards the public’s right to know.”

Not mentioned is when the media itself, in this case the Lazy C, takes it upon themselves to decide the public doesn’t need to know, such as the many discrepancies, shortcomings and questionable acts by the Columbia River Crossing light rail project.

What protection is there for the public’s right to know what biased media decides they have no need to know?

Citizen Blogs!

Yes, the selectiveness of the lamestream media spawned citizens to take matters into their own hands and report news the lamestream media has decided doesn’t need to be known by the public.

But blogs that grew in prominence and their parent groups were the ones targeted by the DOJ and IRS that was covered up months before the 2012 elections that saw media sweetheart Barack Obama swept back into office as media remains silent on the probes and never saw fit to do any background checking on grandiose claims made by Obama.

The Lazy C has in the past placed blame on citizen blogs for their swift loss of subscribers and financial problems encountered and have never seemed to keen on standing up for our first amendment rights, just their own.

An October 2008 article appearing in the Lazy C on blogs claimed, “Their voices range from the bleeding-heart left to the rabid right. They are often angry, sometimes humorous, occasionally insightful and, periodically, inaccurate. And in the electronic age, they are likely here to stay, even though many remain dubious of their information and message” as well as “questions remain if bloggers have real influence on the community or are nothing more than marginally informed pontificators.”

Just what sort of “pontificators” are informed and choose to hide it from the public view?

While I agree a shield law is most appropriate, do you think for one minute the Lazy C extends that towards bloggers?

A 2008 effort to require bloggers to register as lobbyists saw no mention in the pages of the Lazy C that I can find in their archives.

That we so easily expose their bias and continue to get news out the public that the public indeed does have a right to know while they try to hide it from the public’s view has irritated the lamestream media many times.

But we will continue.

Our first amendment right to free speech is no less than the media’s first amendment right to free speech or a free press. And whether the biased lamestream media likes it or not, we bloggers are also media.

The administrations selective targeting of Conservative and Right Wing Groups sets a very dangerous precedent regarding our constitutional freedoms.

Too bad the lamestream media did not care until they discovered they too were targets.

4 Comments to “Is It Up To the Media to Determine When the Public Has “A Right to Know?””

  1. Like Obama, the Lazy C is their own worst enemy.

    No one forces them to lie, either by co-mission or omission. No one forces them to exaggerate. No one forces them to censor. No one forces them to work against the people in favor of their own agenda.

    Those are all choices made by the owner and his lackeys, Brancaccio and the pit yorkie, Laird.

    Unfortunately, we all suffer for it. At least until the democratian’s final bankruptcy.

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  2. When I was young, the area I lived had several independently owned newspapers. Some were clearly Democratic party leaning and others were “Republican papers” (as my father, a Democratic politician, described them). Over the years, the papers went out of business and other publishers extended their reach into our community … but as the generation of the families that owned these papers reached retirement age, they were mostly sold to large “media companies.” In part, this was due to the realities of how estate taxes would force sale (to pay taxes due) anyway — but also in part due to the younger generation (of the owning families) no longer interested in operating newspapers. Whatever, the result was that in my former home community, there are two conglomerate media companies owing all the newspapers in the region.

    These media companies do not seem to operate with any particular political leanings — and they appear to let the local editors choose the editorial policy according to their whim. (Or perhaps the media companies lean left….?) Whatever the exact circumstances, the reality is that the papers in my former home community are all rather left leaning — the reporters, schooled in the professional journalism schools (that are uniformly dominated by leftist professors) make their reports from a leftist viewpoint and often hardly seem to consider that opposite views even exist. Indeed, many times egregious negative remarks about (for example) President Bush are made in an article that has no relevancy to the political remark at all!

    That was when I decided that I no longer needed to support the lame/left stream media. I dropped my subscriptions to two local newspapers and to weekly newsmagazines that constantly advocated viewpoints and policies that I could not support.

    Sadly, “professional” journalists are so far to the left, philosophically, that they don’t even realize how biased their reporting is — even on topics that have no political element. (Indeed, even the Wall Street Journal (the one newspaper I do subscribe to) has some news articles that fail to fully eliminate a leftist slant (after all, they hire their new journalists from “the system” that has created them).)

    As for the local papers in Southwest Washington (and surrounding area), I do not subscribe to any — though I do receive two “throw away” papers each week that have some local news along with the supermarket ads, etc… I have occasionally seen local papers in doctor/dentist waiting rooms, etc. I’m not at all impressed.

    The saving grace is that there are blogs, like this one, that first admit to and explain their political view point up front. That I can live with. It’s the newspapers that pretend to be “fair reporters” but fill their pages with one-sided propaganda that I can’t abide.

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  3. Thanks fr working so hard to keep the real news out there Lew. Thanks for the other slant and the differing opinion.

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  4. News is news, writing about the news is different from reporting the news. In reporting the news it becomes essential to set aside ones built in bias and look at the objective facts. It is not an easy thing to accomplish, and those who do it well are often set aside for those who merely sound objective. But that initial inverted pyramid style is only the first obstacle in factual reporting, after writing the story it has to be cut and edited to fit in a space invariably smaller than the copy available (that is the reason for the inverted pyramid) and the first sentence becomes the all important all encompassing hook for the story. The headline draws or repels your eye to or from the story, the first sentence is what really sets up the readers expectations of what will be included in the print that follows. A good edit can leave the dry fact in and drop the emotional, erase the opinionated, and tone down the partisan. Beyond the misconstruction of opinion for fact, use of “expert” quotations to add a flavor to the copy is more often a means of adding partisan meme. Yes it is a fact that so and so called so so and so a what for, but the information so and so’s statement lends to the story is oftener less than the credibility lost.

    Like anytime the paper quotes Jim Moeller, you know they are despairing anything positive to say.

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