There’s an interesting – and revealing – article in today’s New York Times about how “outflanked Democrats” are looking for ways “to play catch up in media battles”. The spin? That the blame for recent electoral defeats can at least partly be attributed to the way in which liberals are allegedly outgunned by a (doubtless “vast”) conservative presence in this country’s media. What presence? Fox News, apparently, and a chorus of “prominent, outright partisan media voices”. By contrast, when it comes to identifying their sources of reliable media backing, the poor old Democrats can, apparently, only point to ‘a scant few’ outlets.
This is nonsense (and it shows the unease felt by a Left confronted, at last, with some debate), but it is, in particular, worth paying attention to that reference to “outright partisan media voices.” The key word is “outright”, better translated as “honest”. That there is a liberal bias in much of today’s media seems undeniable, but, if there’s one notable thing about it, it is that it is not “outright”. Rather, it comes in under cover, camouflaged as ‘public television’, objective ‘reporting’ (Dan Rather, are you paying attention?) or as a sub-text of much of today’s entertainment programming. The political agenda is there, but it’s not admitted to.
If liberals want a more ‘partisan’ presence in the media, that’s fine (particularly if it could be provided by the likes of Michael Moore and Barbra Streisand), but they should have the decency to acknowledge the outlets that those far from ‘outflanked’ Democrats already have.