The Corner

Dispatch from the Frontiers of Media Science

For a perfect example of what the New York Times has become, one need look no farther than the Upshot column in this morning’s paper, which quotes an Internet data-analytics firm and a psychology professor (the Times would quote a professor if a Little League game was rained out) to explain why liberal readers prefer liberal news sources and conservatives readers prefer conservative ones. In case you have trouble grasping the concept, the piece is illustrated with half a dozen bar graphs.

Most telling, perhaps, are the particular stories the writer chose as examples: President Trump’s false claims about the attendance at his inauguration, and Kellyanne Conway’s references to a nonexistent Bowling Green massacre. Why did liberals spend more time following these stories than conservatives? The writer suggests “one reason could be that articles by outlets with more liberal readers were more engaging,” then undercuts his argument by quoting a Daily Kos headline that is lackluster even by that site’s low standards.

The actual explanation is obvious: Only a liberal would consider Trump’s exaggerating the size of something, or one of his aides getting a place name wrong, to be news. When Obama was president, we had our fun with “57 states” and “I don’t speak Austrian” and “corpseman,” while liberals shrugged them off. But when your side is in power, you focus on things that actually matter.

Fred Schwarz — Fred Schwarz is a deputy managing editor of National Review.

Most Popular

Politics & Policy

Basta La Vista, Baby

Dear Reader (And especially Martha McSally’s dog), As I often note, I increasingly tend to see the political scene as a scripted reality show in which the writers don’t flesh out the dialogue so much as move characters into weird, wacky, confrontational, or embarrassing positions. It’s a lot like The ... Read More
Education

Betsy DeVos Strikes a Blow for the Constitution

The Department of Education has issued its long-awaited proposed regulations reforming sexual-assault adjudications on college campus. Not only will these rules restore basic due process and fairness to college tribunals, but they also — given how basic the changes are — highlight just how ridiculous ... Read More
U.S.

Friends of Elmer

Do you know what scares an American outdoorsman more than a grizzly bear? Twitter. In the late summer and early autumn, the hunting world had its eyes on the courts: The Trump administration had issued new guidance that would permit the hunting of brown bears (popularly known as grizzly bears), including in ... Read More