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"...public opinion deserves to be respected as well as despised" G.W.F. Hegel, 'Philosophy of Right'

a partisan media « Previous | |Next »
October 18, 2004

Posters1.jpgWe increasingly live in a media-driven, commercial culture, where it's hard to escape the ever-increasing waves of advertising and infotainment. And our public spaces are eroding as our schools, museums, libraries, parks become sites for commercials of the media/entertainment industry.

The corporate media is becoming increasingly partisan. Witness the denunciations of "liberal bias" in the media, that indicates "a political strategy" to something that was wrong with news media--that somehow, somewhere bias found its way into reporting. An elite liberal bias. That strategy means that it is the conservative media which appear as balanced and fair, and not partisan. Fox's entire editorial philosophy revolves around the idea that the centrist mainstream media have a liberal bias that Fox is obligated to rectify. The centrist mainstream media just don't tell the conservative side of the story, and the country has grown so accustomed to the left-leaning media. So says Fox.

Fox is a central hub of the conservative movement's well-oiled media machine in the US. Together with the GOP organization and its satellite think tanks and advocacy groups, this network of partisan outlets--(including the Washington Times, the Wall Street Journal editorial page and conservative talk-radio shows like Rush Limbaugh's) forms a highly effective right-wing echo chamber where GOP-friendly news stories can be promoted, repeated and amplified.

The rhetoric is based on the proven populist formula of waving the flag, hitting the hip-pocket nerve, banging the drum for anti-intellectualism, mocking liberals and playing on suburban fears, prejudices and frustrations. It is practised well by Andrew Bolt, Alan Jones and Tim Blair in Australia.

In the US the world of right-wing corporate media in the US is dominated by Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. and its cable mouthpiece Fox News. One gets used to the spin and rightwing punditry in magazines such as the Weekly Standard. What sits behind this political spin is the aggressive political stance of an ideologically conservative media corporation, which recycles the media bulletins from a Republican Whitehouse. This challenges the persistent view that the Murdoch media is committed to "fair and balanced" reporting. It is this disingenuous claim to objectivity that corrodes the integrity of theMurdoch news business. Fox refuses to admit its political point of view.

We do not have an Australian version of Fox News full of tabloid sensationalism. But we might well have with the media consolidation arising from the proposed changes in the cross media ownership laws.

| Posted by Gary Sauer-Thompson at 9:00 PM | | Comments (0)