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Elwood: “ma che cavolo di musica fate in questo locale?”

Bob’(del Country Bunker): “tutt’e due, sia il country che il western”

dal film “The Blues Brothers

I grandi giornali sono un po’ come il locale di Bob, se chiedete che visione politica coltivano, dovrebbero rispondervi: “entrambe: sia di sinistra che di centro-sinistra”. Vale per Le Monde, come per il Corriere, come per il New York Times.

Così come il locale di Bob è uno specchio deformante della musica, i media sono lo specchio deformante delle democrazie occidentali.

Un’idea più chiara del problema la fornisce Tim Groseclose nel libro “Political Views in the Newsroom Left Turn: How Liberal Media Bias Distorts the American Mind”.

Partiamo dal fatto semplice semplice che da solo dice tutto. Si parla delle elezioni Obama-McCaine…

… In a typical presidential election, only about 7 percent of Washington correspondents vote for the Republican…

7%! Altro che Botteri.

Ma possibile?

Possibile sì. Elaine Povich, membro del Media Research Center presso il Freedom Forum ha approfondito la cosa…

… She surveyed 139 Washington bureau chiefs and congressional correspondents. Seven percent said they’d voted for George H. W. Bush, while 89 percent said they’d voted for Bill Clinton…

I riscontri informali di John Tierney ribadiscono il concetto…

… found similar results when he conducted an “unscientific survey” among his colleagues. He asked, “Who would make a better president, John Kerry or George W. Bush?” Among Washington-based journalists, about 8 percent said Bush and 92 percent said Kerry…

I giornalisti liberal americani invadono giornali e TG, almeno quanto da noi fa la sinistra.

L’invasione è appena meno pronunciata se si considerano i media di provincia

…  Robert Lichter and Stanley Rothman surveyed 240 journalists at the most influential national media outlets—including The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, Time, Newsweek, U.S. News & World Report, ABC, CBS, NBC, and PBS. In the elections of 1964, 1968, 1972, and 1976, the journalists reported voting for the Republican at rates, respectively, of 6, 14, 19, and 19 percent.4 When the surveys include reporters of local news, they generally find even more Republican support. For instance, when John Tierney polled journalists outside of Washington, D.C., he found that 25 percent preferred Bush and 75 percent preferred Kerry…

In Connecticut, il Dipartimento delle politiche pubbliche ha registrato che…

…. Of the journalists who reported voting for one of the two major-party candidates, 27 percent chose Bush and 73 percent chose Kerry…

Se nei media di provincia le cose vanno leggermente meglio, bisogna anche dire che lì di politica se ne fa davvero pochina

… It should be noted, however, that many local reporters cover subjects, such as weather and sports, that have nothing to do with politics. Thus, if our concern is the political bias of the media, then it is appropriate to focus on the journalists who report on political subjects…

Una piccola conclusione guardando alle ricerche disponibili…

… The surveys that exclude local reporters consistently show that journalists vote for the Democratic candidate at rates of 85 percent or higher… Indeed, when you look at non-survey-based evidence, as I will present, journalists tend to choose Democrats at extremely high rates, usually higher than 95 percent…

85% e 95%!! Possibile? Possibile sì, e nell’ Italia gramsciana andiamo forse peggio.

Insomma, i media non rappresentano la società.

Manca la “diversità“, eppure dalla diversità traiamo molti benefici…

… a number of journalists and social scientists have studied the benefits of “diversity.” One of the main conclusions of such studies is that newsrooms and other groups are aided in problem solving and information gathering if they receive the input from many different types of people…

Possibile che chi è tanto sensibile alla diversità delle razze lo sia tanto poco quando si parla di diversità ideologiche? Sì, è possibile.

Alcuni dicono: l’ideologia dei giornalisti è irrilevante. Si ammette l’accuratezza dei rilievi ma no si dà loro alcun peso.

Non sono i giornalisti che contano ma il loro boss (spesso di destra)…

… First, if journalists are really nothing more than dupes of their boss, then why do they seek such jobs? Second, if corporate bosses really are so conservative, then why do they hire so many liberals? Third, even if corporate bosses had the time and inclination to monitor and control their journalists, how could they do this under a distortion theory of bias?…

Eppure, quando il boss ha voluto far politica a destra ha assunto giornalisti di destra.

Il fatto è che il boss non vuole quasi mai far politica, vuole vendere.

Lo dimostrano bene le ricerche di Mathew Gentzkow, recente John Bates Clark…

… A natural hypothesis is that a media outlet’s perspective reflects the ideology of its owner…. little evidence to support… two newspapers with the same owner are no more likely to be ideologically similar than two random papers… If a paper serves a liberal community, it is likely to lean left, and if it serves a conservative community, it is likely to lean right… They find that in regions where a high percentage of the population attends church regularly, there are more conservatives, and newspapers have a conservative slant…

Il consumatore conta più della proprietà.

Ma c’è anche chi mette in dubbio l’accuratezza dei rilievi. Eric Alterman, per esempio: la frequenza delle risposte ai sondaggi è talmente bassa!

È vero, non tutti i giornalisti svelano le loro preferenze politiche, ma questo è motivo per sospettare che il fenomeno sia ancora più preoccupante di quello registrato.

A spiegare bene perché è Adam Meirowitz: ad un sondaggio si risponde spesso in modo strategico, almeno se la risposta può avvantaggiare alcuni obbiettivi politici.

Per questo molti giornalisti di sinistra, presumibilmente, coprono le loro preferenze…

… Suppose that you’re a liberal journalist, and suppose you understand that if most journalists report that they are liberal, then this will cause people to believe that the media have a liberal bias. Now consider that the latter result can influence policy. That is, if a voter believes that the media have a liberal bias, then he might believe that he’s not getting the whole truth about the benefits of conservative policies. This, in turn, may cause him to vote more conservatively in the next election, which ultimately leads to more conservative policies. As a consequence, if you’re a liberal journalist, and you care about policy, then you have an incentive, when answering such surveys, to lie about your political beliefs—that is, to say that you’re conservative…

Ciò significherebbe che i risultati che abbiamo in mano sottovalutano l’ “invasione“.

D’altronde, in questi sondaggi è facile barare, non c’è penalità, mentire o tacere non costa niente.

Cerchiamo allora dei metodi più oggettivi. Esempio: la contribuzione in denaro dei giornalisti alla campagna elettorale dei vari candidati. Ebbene, il principio-Meirowitz è confermato, lo sbilanciamento a sinistra è ancora più acuto…

… One is to analyze campaign contributions instead of survey responses. Another is to examine the journalists’ publicly expressed preferences for presidential candidates…. Consistent with the implications of the Meirowitz principle, these studies find that journalists are more liberal than the survey data suggest…

E questo anche se sappiamo che l’uomo di destra è mediamente più generoso.

Sunto dei 4 studi disponibili

… The following are summaries of the four studies: ■     In July 2004, PoliticalMoneyLine (now CQ MoneyLine) found that the ratio of (i) journalists who gave to the Kerry campaign, to (ii) journalists who gave to the Bush campaign was 93:1. Thus, of the journalists who gave to one of the campaigns, 98.9 percent gave to Kerry.19 ■     In 2008, William Tate of Investor’s Business Daily searched federal records for the campaign contributions of journalists. He found that for every journalist who contributed to the McCain campaign, twenty contributed to the Obama campaign. Thus, of journalists who gave to either campaign, 95.2 percent gave to Obama.20 ■     In June 2009, Jennifer Harper of The Washington Times examined campaign contributions of ABC employees during the 2008 presidential campaign. She found that they gave 80 times as much money to the Obama campaign as the McCain campaign. Thus, of the money that ABC employees gave to one of the campaigns, 98.8 percent went to Obama.21 ■     In 2007, Bill Dedman, an investigative reporter for MSNBC, identified 144 journalists who had made political contributions between 2004 and the start of the 2008 campaign. Of these, he found that 123 journalists gave exclusively to Democrats and liberal causes, while 15 gave exclusively to Republican and conservative causes. (Two gave to both parties, and apparently the remaining four gave to causes that could not be identified as partisan.) Thus, of those who gave exclusively to one side of the political aisle, 89.1 percent gave to Democratic or liberal causes…

Ci sono tre casi – Slate magazine, NBC News, e CBS News – in cui si raggiunge il 99%!

Aneddoto all’ NBC…

… On January 5, 2007, Bill O’Reilly interviewed veteran NBC News reporter Andrea Mitchell. He challenged her to name one conservative at NBC News. Mitchell would not, or perhaps could not, meet the challenge…

Aneddoto CBS…

… on October 19, 2009, on MSNBC’s Morning Joe. Host Joe Scarborough asked co-host Mika Brzezinski how many conservatives worked at her former network, CBS… they were all pro-choice…

La tipica reazione a chi viene esposto il problema del media bias…

… Everybody already knows that most journalists are liberal. Why do we need a survey to tell us that?”…

“Lo sappiamo tutti. E allora?”

Eppure, questo sbilanciamento è ben più accentuato di quel che crede comunemente  la gente…

… surveys are more remarkable and surprising than people realize. That is, for example, suppose you were asked, “What percentage of reporters are liberal?” You’d probably say “A lot.” However, you might also consider 70 percent or 80 percent “a lot.”…

Di solito si pensa ad un 70-80%.

Si puo’ fare un esperimento mentale. Pensate a gruppi di persone in cui secondo voi l’ideologia progressista prevale. Volete scommettere che tra i giornalisti che si occupano di politica il bias è più accentuato?…

… Suppose you visited some of the most liberal places in America, such as Berkeley, California, or Cambridge, Massachusetts. The residents of those places are actually more conservative than Washington correspondents… The following are the results of all such two-way combinations of the groups: ■     Unionized, nonreligious people voted 76–24 for Obama. ■     Unionized, low-income people voted 70–30 for Obama. ■     Unionized, anti-Walmart refuseniks voted 87–13 for Obama.31 ■     Nonreligious, low-income people voted 72–28 for Obama. ■     Nonreligious, anti-Walmart refuseniks voted 85–15 for Obama. ■     Low-income, anti-Walmart refuseniks voted 88–12 for Obama…

****

Ma esiste anche un “problema di secondo ordine”: come vive e lavora un giornalista di destra circondato da giornalisti di sinistra?

Ci sono parecchi studi focalizzati su organizzazioni dominate da un gruppo preponderante in cui operano anche piccole minoranze residue.

Una prima conseguenza è la marginalizzazione della minoranza: trattarla come se non esistesse. Parlarne come si trattasse di subumani.

Una seconda conseguenza è la ridefinizione degli estremismi: cio’ che in società è solo “moderato”, in redazione diventa di “estrema destra”. Cio’ che in società è di estrema sinistra, in redazione diventa quasi l’ortodossia.

In Università, per esempio, le cose non vanno molto meglio che nelle redazioni. lo registrano Christopher Cardiff e Daniel Klein

… They found that, in general, Democratic professors outnumber Republican professors by a 5:1 ratio. However, this varies considerably by field. For instance, in sociology the ratio is 44:1; in ethnic studies, 16:1; political science 6.5:1; physics 4.2:1; economics, 2.8:1; electrical engineering 2.5:1; accounting, 1.2:1; and finance, 0.5:1…

Il rapporto è di 5 a 1.

Il cosiddetto problema di secondo ordine non si presenta in modo lineare. Quando il rapporto è 50-50 il problema non esiste. Quando è di 60-40 non lo si nota, e forse nemmeno quando è di 70-30. Ma c’è una soglia oltre cui esplode…

… Although the imbalance doubles when you move from 70–30 to 90–10 (that is, note that 90 minus 10 is twice as large as 70 minus 30), the effect of the imbalance more than doubles… Suppose you randomly chose three colleagues at your work to join you for lunch. What’s the chance that all three of them would be right-of-center politically? The answer, if your workplace has a perfect 50–50 political balance, is one out of eight (= 0.5 × 0.5 × 0.5)… Now suppose that you’re a Washington correspondent and you conduct the same experiment. Then the chance that all three of your lunchmates would be right-of-center is approximately 1 in 3,000 (= 0.07 × 0.07 × 0.07). If you engage in this social interaction twice a week, then only once every thirty years will all three of your lunchmates be conservative. Meanwhile, the probabilities would change significantly if liberals comprised only 60 or 75 percent of the newsroom. The probabilities that all three of your lunchmates would be conservative change from 1 in 3,000 to 1 in 16 or 1 in 64…

Per molti giornalisti, i conservatori semplicemente non esistono: non li conoscono, non li frequentano. Si accorgono della loro presenza solo quando viene eletto un politico di destra. Un esempio, dopo l’elezione di Nixon

… the most famous illustration of this occurred after Richard Nixon won the 1972 presidential election. Pauline Kael, a film critic at The New Yorker, proclaimed “I can’t believe it. I don’t know a single person who voted for him.”…

Ma sentite questo spassoso scambio tra uno studente e il suo professore all’università…

… MATT: How can George Bush possibly win? I don’t know a single person at Stanford who will vote for him. HEALY: (after a long silence) Matt, you know when you’re on the airplane, flying back to the East Coast, and you look down and see all those green square patches? MATT: Yeah. HEALY: You know who lives there? MATT: No. HEALY: Republicans…

Molto significativo.

E quando si parla di aborto?…

… “In the eyes of most journalists,” said Ethan Bronner, a reporter for The Boston Globe, “opposing abortion … is not a legitimate, civilized position in our society.”…

Un classico: il pro-life è per definizione un religioso fanatico.

Quando un pro-life ragiona sul problema dell’aborto ti guardano con occhi sgranati…

… Marianne Rea-Luthin, president of the Value of Life Committee of Boston, confirmed such attitudes: “Reporters often say to me, ‘Gee, you’re reasonable,’ as if all pro-life people are unreasonable.”…

Alcuni prendono coscienza del proprio auto-esilio. Il caso di Marie Arana al Washington Post…

… “Too often, we wear liberalism on our sleeve and are intolerant of other lifestyles and opinions … We’re not very subtle about it at this paper: If you work here, you must be one of us. You must be liberal, progressive, a Democrat.”…

Chi invece è in schiacciante minoranza comincia a nascondere le sue differenze, a minimizzarle. Deborah Howell, sempre al WP…

… [S]ome of the conservatives’ complaints about a liberal tilt are valid. Journalism naturally draws liberals; we like to change the world. I’ll bet that most Post journalists voted for Obama. I did. There are centrists at the Post as well. But the conservatives I know here feel so outnumbered that they don’t even want to be quoted by name in a memo….

Qui parla l’unico giornalista a Slate che ebbe il coraggio di votare McCaine. Ecco come giustifica il suo voto

… This is a difficult election for me. But voting for John McCain is an easy choice. He’s a man I admire, I agree with many of his policy positions, and, since I am a moderate but loyal Republican, I feel a kind of kinship with him. Barack Obama is an exciting candidate, and I wish I could share the enthusiasm so many Americans feel for him … … I don’t hate President Bush like so many do, but even I can say his presidency has been a disappointment.… I’m hopeful that an Obama victory would be a wakeup call as well as an opportunity [for more libertarian-minded conservatives] to take back the party from the religious right and social conservatives.… So regardless of what happens on Nov. 4, I won’t be too upset. But neither will I be too excited….

Insomma: ha votato McCaine ma Obama resta anche per lui un candidato “super-eccitante”.

Ecco invece come si giustifica chi – in quella stessa redazione – ha votato Obama…

… “I’m voting for [Obama] to support an energy and transportation policy that will focus on creating viable sources of renewable energy and reducing carbon emissions; to support a cautious and multilateral foreign policy that ensures American security with diplomacy, not a cowboy hat; and to support economic policies that benefit all Americans instead of just the wealthy.” ■ Two more Slate employees quoted David Sedaris when explaining why they prefer Obama: “I think of being on an airplane. The flight attendant comes down the aisle with her food cart and, eventually, parks it beside my seat. ‘Can I interest you in the chicken?’ she asks. ‘Or would you prefer the platter of sh*t with bits of broken glass in it?’ So, yes, I’m having the chicken.”…

Praticamente si trattava di scampare la barbarie.

Katherine Kersten da qualche consiglio a chi vuole fare il giornalista avendo inclinazioni destrorse…

… At first there was significant resistance [about my hire]. But over time you become more accepted. Part of it is when the ribbing—that sort of thing—comes, I just smile and take it in stride. People can actually see that I’m human. You have to be nice. You have to have a good sense of humor. And you have to be firm in your convictions, or you’ll just become liberal like everyone else…

Insomma, fate i simpaticoni, sorridete costantemente e siate sempre di buon umore. E’ meglio.

Neanche a sinistra, comunque sono omogenei. Litigano di brutto anche tra loro finché si creano almeno due fronti.

All’università ci sono professori vicini a Hillary Clinton, tanto per dire.

Ma poi ci sono dei marxisti autentici, quelli col poster di Angela Davis in ufficio! Poi c’è quello di Greenpeace e il simpatizzante di Noam Chomsky. Per questi ultimi la vittoria di Obama è stata una vittoria della destra! William Greider su  The Nation…

… [Obama’s] victory, it appears, was a triumph for the cautious center-right politics that has described the Democratic Party for several decades. Those of us who expected more were duped, not so much by Obama but by our own wishful thinking…

Ecco, in un ambiente del genere come appare secondo voi un moderato conservatore? Ovvio: come un radicale di estrema destra! E’ questa la cosiddetta “ridefinizione degli estremismi”.

Il bello è che la sinistra moderata soffre spesso di un senso di colpa per non essere abbastanza radicale! Quando va al potere spesso vuole tacitare questo senso di colpa, e allora sì che sono guai. Il caso della city di San Francisco

… city of San Francisco… slightly more conservative than a typical newsroom… Two issues in San Francisco reveal just how extreme mainstream members of a group become… In November 2005, 58 percent of the voters in San Francisco voted for Proposition H, which banned the sale of guns and required all existing gun owners to turn in the guns that they already owned. Notwithstanding the proposition’s violation of the Second Amendment, a majority of San Francisco favored the measure. The same was true of Proposition I, which banned military recruitment in the city’s public schools. At the time of the vote, the United States, so it appeared, was stuck in an unpopular and unsuccessful war in Iraq. Accordingly, it’s not surprising that many people opposed the war. But Proposition I was more extreme than that. It opposed not just the war but also the troops, since it hampered their ability to recruit reinforcements for the battle zone…

Persino sulle teorie complottiste del 9/11 la sinistra moderata non ha saputo ridere di certe ipotesi fuori dal mondo che venivano dalla sinistra estrema. Ecco una risoluzione uscita da un gruppo di studiosi a Berckley…

… [W]e are convinced, based on our own research, that the [Bush] administration has been deceiving the nation about critical events in New York and Washington, D.C. We believe these events may have been orchestrated by elements within the administration to manipulate Americans into supporting policies at home and abroad they would never have condoned absent “another Pearl Harbor.”…

Cynthia McKinney, parlamentare della Georgia, sull’ 11/9…

… Bush administration knew in advance that 9/11 would occur…

Tuttavia, in alcuni casi, messi alle strette, anche i progressisti ammettono la distorsione di fondo, ma solo in alcuni casi specifici. Eccone uno che ha interessato il NYT

… One such admission occurred on September 27, 2009. During the prior few weeks, James O’Keefe and Hanna Giles had released some of their now-famous undercover videos of ACORN employees. In the videos, O’Keefe and Giles dressed as a pimp and prostitute. Their videos show ACORN employees giving advice on how to set up a brothel that would involve fifteen-year-old girls. While conservative talk radio, Fox News, and many Internet sites devoted a huge amount of coverage to the videos, The New York Times was silent on the subject. Despite this, two days after the first video aired, the U.S. Census Bureau severed all ties to ACORN.13 Robert Groves, the Census director, said that ACORN had become “a distraction.” The Times ran a story about the Census Bureau’s decision but it mentioned nothing about the videos. As O’Keefe and Giles released more videos—and other outlets began making the videos the lead story of the day—the Times finally began to mention the videos. The Times’s public editor criticized his paper’s response. “Tuning in Too Late” was the title of his piece on September 27, 2009.14 [F]or days as more videos were posted and government authorities rushed to distance themselves from ACORN, The Times stood still. Its slow reflexes—closely following its slow response to a controversy that forced the resignation of Van Jones, a White House adviser—suggested that it has trouble dealing with stories arising from the polemical world of talk radio, cable television, and partisan blogs. Some stories, lacking facts, never catch fire. But others do, and a newspaper like The Times needs to be alert to them or wind up looking clueless or, worse, partisan. Some editors told me they were not immediately aware of the ACORN videos on Fox, YouTube and a new conservative web site called BigGovernment.com…

O, sull’aborto, il caso del WP…

… Two decades earlier, David Shaw of the Los Angeles Times wrote a Pulitzer Prize–winning series of articles about abortion and how unfairly his fellow journalists generally treat pro-life activists and their arguments. One of the most egregious examples involved an April 1989 abortion-rights rally in Washington, D.C. As Shaw wrote,15 The Washington Post gave it extraordinary coverage, beginning with five stories in the five days leading up to the event, including a 6,550-word cover story in the paper’s magazine on the abortion battle the day of the event. The Post even published a map, showing the march route, road closings, parking, subway, lost and found and first-aid information. However, a year later, when pro-life activists held their “Rally for Life,” the Post gave it only a tiny fraction of the coverage… Leonard Downie, the Post’s managing editor, explained that the culprit for the asymmetric coverage was the second-order problem: “When the abortion-rights people held their rally [last year],” he said, “we heard about it from our friends and colleagues.”17 However, the Post did not benefit from the same kinds of interactions with the pro-life side. The result, as the Post’s ombudsman admitted, was “embarrassing.”…

continua…

COMMENTO PERSONALE

L’ “invasione” è indubbia, ma non del tutto indebita: i lettori di giornali sono di sinistra, inutile girarci intorno. Non si puo’ fare un giornale di destra se quelli di destra non leggono. Il consumatore è sovrano qui come altrove, in questo senso il titolo del libro mi sembra sviante. Detto questo, non nego le possibili distorsioni: in alcuni momenti clou della vita politica anche l’uomo di destra – o più semplicemente l’indeciso – si rivolge ai media e qui si ritrova inevitabilmente di fronte ad uno specchio deformante che su molte cose potrebbe ingannarlo.

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