Saturday, January 29, 2011
Tuesday, June 22, 2010
Thursday, June 10, 2010
Wednesday, June 9, 2010
Tuesday, June 8, 2010
the headline then. Election night and reporters will be reporting using the USA Today "We". A proposition in California favoring corporations that passes 51-49 will be reported as "We love big business". Well what about the pretty substantial 49%?
Sunday, June 6, 2010
Daily Kos: Throughout the book, you use scholarly reference, but also frequently cite political reporting to illustrate examples of how worldview plays out. But reporters and journalists have their own narrative, which they use to contextualize their reporting. "Washington is broken," or "Obama is like [fill in past President]". Do you see the same dynamic in reporting as you see in the voting patterns of constituent groups?"
Weiler: What I find most notable about reporting from the perspective of authoritarianism's role in polarization is the degree to which he-said/she-said reporting really precludes American political journalism from providing any context for how extreme the base of one political party has become. Of course, I am going to sound like a rabid partisan myself when I say that, but so be it. If you think about the kinds of things Sarah Palin repeatedly said during the 2008 campaign - from drill, baby, drill, to "real Americans," to repeated overheated warnings about Obama and socialism, and then on to her post-campaign rhetoric, including death panels, etc, it's extraordinary really. This is not some fringe person, but a woman with a major political following who was the vice-presidential nominee of a major political party. And if you think about the heroes of the most vocal elements of the GOP today, the Tea Party (and yes, I regard them as a passionate faction of the GOP, not a meaningful alternative to either party), folks like Glenn Beck, who are trumpeting the most absurd, outlandish stuff imaginable, it's quite extraordinary that political journalism still acts as if the center of gravity of our political discourse can simply be calibrated in the same way as always. The Democrats say this, the Republicans say that, and the truth must be somewhere in the middle.
I heard Joe Scarborough, who passes for reasonable these days on the right, say the other day that he found Rand Paul too extreme in his views of the role of government in exactly the same way that he found Paul Krugman too extreme - one never wanting government involvement, the other always wanting it. This was, in a nutshell, what I'm talking about. Paul Krugman is, despite his emergence as a major liberal pundit, a completely conventional economist - not a Marxist or a socialist in any historically valid understanding of those terms - a believer in the way markets function that is in line with the (pro-capitalist) profession as a whole and a famous supporter of things like free trade. In a crisis, of the sort we're now in, yes, he prefers a Keynesian approach. But the idea that his view of the relationship between the government and the economy is the polar opposite of Rand Paul's is just absurd.
Political journalism has failed miserably in contextualizing the changing center of gravity in political discourse, including (though not limited too) its failure to apprehend the increasing authoritarianism of the GOP.
Love to CNN do some self examination and explore how these issues are raised.