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Media bias explained for the feeble-minded

In a previous post I highlighted the disturbing abuse scandal that is currently rocking the Chicago public school system. The former CEO of the Chicago public schools is Arne Duncan, who is now Secretary of Education. It's my belief (along with that of virtually every other conservative) that because Duncan is now a Disciple of the One, he will not be held accountable.

I concluded, "Once again, the silence from the national news media and liberal children's advocacy groups is absolutely deafening."

One of our regular trolls, mantis, responded:

The investigation was just reported yesterday, and has so far been picked up by every network and major newspaper in Chicago, and you're complaining about lack of coverage?

I'm sure you'll completely ignore the increased coverage in coming days, as well as the involvement of those "liberal" childrens advocacy groups, as it will show how idiotic your complaint is.

You really are this stupid, aren't you? It can't possibly be an act.

The big story about the abuse scandal (from CBS 2 in Chicago) is datelined Monday Feb. 9. If mantis is right, then all of the major news networks should have produced their own stories about the scandal by Wednesday. 48+ hours is plenty of time, right?

I looked around the interwebz Wednesday evening to see what I could find. My first stop was Google. I needed to make sure that I had a valid query string for search engines. I typed in "chicago school abuse." Let's see what I came up with:


As you can see (click on the image to enlarge it), the first four search results are about the current abuse scandal in the Chicago public schools. I think the query string is good, so on to MSNBC.


Nothing. Bupkus. Even scrolling through the search results, I can't find anything about the Chicago public school abuse scandal. Maybe CBS News will be better.


"No results were found for: 'chicago school abuse'." ABC News?


No results found. How about CNN?


Again nothing. CNN uses a modified Google search. You'll note the handy "Web Results" column on the right-hand side which, once again, lists five stories from Chicago news outlets and blogs about the public school abuse scandal. But nothing from CNN's own website.

For the record, a search of the Fox News website using the same query string also failed to produce anything. There was nothing at the New York Times or Washington Post websites either.

Well, mantis?

You see, we talk about media bias and double standards because it is real. We've just gone through eight years of "search and destroy" media coverage of the White House. Had this or a similar incident happened to a Bush appointee, it certainly would have been front-page news in every major newspaper and the lead story on every network news broadcast by now. Maybe I should cut mantis some slack. After all, he might be ignorant enough to still believe that the press treats everyone fairly, and to expect things that would have merited prime coverage just a few months ago to still be focal points of news reporting today.

Sorry to disappoint you, mantis, but times have changed. Unless something extraordinary happens, there will be no "Arne-gate" or "Heckuva Job, Arne" headlines. The media is now completely in the tank for Obama. The spittle rags have been replaced with drool buckets. Even the prize-winning political cartoonists can't make fun of him. I don't know what else I can say. If there is an uptick in news coverage about this story, or some update-worthy events occur, I'll be glad to blog about them -- but I won't be holding my breath waiting.

Now you know. I tried to break the news as gently as I could.


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Comments (39)

Mantis is a troll. He will... (Below threshold)

Mantis is a troll. He will have a "thrill up his leg" over this shout out even though it exposes his lack of intelligence.

Like all trolls, they belie... (Below threshold)

Like all trolls, they believe the earth is flat regardless of the data. ww

The liberals should think a... (Below threshold)
retired miilitary:

The liberals should think about this.

If 3 republicans voting for the stimulus package is considered bypartisian than everything that Bush did was bipartisian.


Good for you, Michael. It'... (Below threshold)

Good for you, Michael. It's well past time that the rightweb stopped trying to be so polite re: moronic arguments. They should be exposed and treated with the contempt they deserve. The left hasn't been making intelligent arguments that deserve polite responses for 8+ years. It's time to cut off the one-way politeness that makes GOP congressmen so pathetically useless until they earn some respect.

There's also the deaths in ... (Below threshold)

There's also the deaths in Kentucky during an ice storm, while Obama sat in the toasty warm White House and enjoyed rare steak and martinis.

No "Heckuva job, Brownie" stories about Obama leaving people to die.

What this election tells me is that the media controls the Democrat party, not the other way around. They destroyed Hillary, once their darling, in order to put Obama in. Destroy the mainstream media, you destroy the left. And what do I say? Si se puede! We can do it!

On this story, another poss... (Below threshold)
James H:

On this story, another possible source of bias is that political reporters tend to be concentrated heavily in DC. So far, the negative Obama stories that gained traction -- mainly the Daschle and Geithner stories wer e centered in DC, rather than Chicago.

Again, this is just a possible source.

My final comment on this, I... (Below threshold)
James H:

My final comment on this, I promise. I did a quick search, and I suggest that those concerned about coverage of this story contact education reporters/columnists at national media outlets. The Post education columnist, for example, is Jay Mathews. His email address is [email protected]

The major media didn't pick... (Below threshold)

The major media didn't pick up the revelation that the liberal church in Oregon (pulic schools) was quietly packing up child molesting priests (teachers) and sending them off with recommendations to other parishes (school districts) including in other states when a paper there broke that story. What makes you think they're going to cover this story when it's not some unknown Oregonian Bishops (school boards) but one anointed by the Pope (Barry the Great) himself that is at risk? Ain't gonna happen. You're better off trying to get a Letter To The Editor published - it might sneak through.

I'm so tired of trying to p... (Below threshold)

I'm so tired of trying to push a rope.

I can show my liberal acquaintances every media bias story I run across and talk to them until I'm blue in the face about it, and it goes nowhere. They just write me off as a conservative kook that is passing along other conservative kook's writings.

For the rest of my acquaintances it's - preaching to the choir.

I had a friend who claimed ... (Below threshold)
retired miilitary:

I had a friend who claimed that she read the newspapers every day and never saw any media bias.

When I asked what papers she replied "NY Times and Wash Post"

They read what fits into their way of thinking and see nothing wrong with it because it agrees with what they think.

BH: Yeah, but you need to k... (Below threshold)

BH: Yeah, but you need to keep doing it. I've already moved my mother in law from a squishy liberal to dependable conservative after providing her with the "other side" of what she's been reading in the paper and watching on those abonimable sunday talk shows she always watches. And my wife, while still realiably liberal on most issues, at least now knows enough not to trust what she reads in the paper and can easily spot the media tricks and bias without my needing to point them out (labeling bias, placement bias, lack of opposing viewpoints, etc). Now she gets ticked at the people supposedly on 'her side' lying and distorting things and making everyone else look bad.

Grassroots, baby. Grassroots.

Thanks Falze. You have some... (Below threshold)

Thanks Falze. You have some angles I hadn't thought of. I'll try them.

No problem...that's what th... (Below threshold)

No problem...that's what they pay me for.


No they don't.


A question first. When is ... (Below threshold)

A question first. When is the last time national network news jumped on a local education controversy that did not involve sex, from any state?

Anyway, in the past two days this story has been covered by the Chicago Tribune, the Chicago Sun-Times, the local NBC and ABC affiliates, the CBS affiliate, which of course broke this investigative story, and all the local radio news stations, including NPR. And what do you know, here's Shep Shepherd covering the story on FOX News last night (I think someone's having some problems finding his way around the intertubes).

Now I know this trick very well. A rightwinger sees a news story he finds important, and immediately claims media bias. Usually it's because the eeeeevil emm-ess-emm won't cover it, despite the fact that the rightwingers only know about the story because of the eeeeevil emm-ess-emm and they usually give the rest of the media about 5 seconds to respond before crying and whining about bias. If they see that the story is getting covered, they will then shift gears and complain that it should be covered more, and by national media, regardless of how much or how little national interest there may be.

So you may claim that the fact that CNN and MSNBC have not picked up on this story 36 hours after it broke is evidence of some conspiracy to shield liberals from scrutiny, but of course that's bullshit. First of all, last time I checked CNN has two people in their Chicago office, and they eliminated the Midwest bureau chief position last year. I'll give them a call and let them know they should check with you to find out which stories to cover, based on your level of outrage. Second, an education story that does not involve a teacher having sex with a student or teens sending each other naked photos? Boring. I agree that the national media are biased, but biased towards salacious and sensationalist bullshit. I would bet anything that if this story had some sex in it, we'd be hearing much more. As would we if someone captured some of the abuse on camera.

Perhaps you could provide the media with a graduated scale they can reference when collectively determining what stories to give more exposure to. Since a flood of local coverage and some national coverage is not enough for you concerning this particular story, what would be? Which stories must be covered by every news outlet, and which stories are ok to just get a little national coverage, and which ones don't need national coverage at all? I assume the scale would be based upon your level of outrage at the subject matter, as all news decisions should be made.

I give no defense of the national media in general. They are shallow, short-sighted, sensationalist twits who wouldn't know journalism if it jumped on their face and started to wiggle. But the idea that they are all looking out for liberals while trying to destroy conservatives is just stupid, and no amount of misplaced outrage from wingnuts will make it so.

Sorry Mantis, that's a no-g... (Below threshold)

Sorry Mantis, that's a no-go. The media was SCREAMING it's head off two days after katrina because FEMA wasn't rescuing people. I have yet to see ANY of the media even talk about President Obama's handling of the ice storms in Kentucky. NOT ONE. You want to hear something that's really sad that the media never even brought up during katrina? FEMA cannot legally move until a state of emergency is declared. In order to do that, the governor of the state (by law) has to request that the president proclaim it. The president cannot do it himself without evidence that the governor or other state officials (chain of command) is not capable of doing so (dead, commo knocked out, etc.). President Bush could not legally send any FEMA reps until they were requested. They were not requested by Blanco until 3 days after the hurricane. FEMA then has 72 hours to move in and get set up. That's the standard. Blanco was all over the news crying about how nobody was coming to help, but that's because she fell down on the job. It was her negligence that made the situation what it was. So tell me, who's feet did the media lay the problem at?

Obama worshipers aren't goi... (Below threshold)

Obama worshipers aren't going to let you rain on their parade.

I agree with Mantis -- to a... (Below threshold)
James H:

I agree with Mantis -- to a point. Even in the 24-hour newscyle age, it still takes time for a story to percolate from the local level to the national level. Especially when the story doesn't involve octuplets.

Like "global warming", the ... (Below threshold)

Like "global warming", the debate on media bias is over:


Even those journalists hiding as so-called "independents", can't skew the data enough....journalists overwhelming identify themselves as leftists! Far more so than the general population they claim to represent.

As usual, mantis pretends t... (Below threshold)

As usual, mantis pretends to make a point, but actually is full of it. Heck, in comment 8 I pointed out an education story full of all sorts of sex that seemed to ensnare an entire STATE. Yet that didn't get play.

And your attempts to make this out to be some little local issue ("why didn't MSNBC have a camera crew there to cover the school marm fergittin' her lesson plan?") is laughable - that is, if you said it to my face I'd laugh in your face. This is about a HAND-PICKED guy by the PRESIDENT from THE PRESIDENT'S PLACE OF WORK AND RESIDENCE FOR YEARS and in the SPECIFIC FIELD that concerned several boards of which THE PRESIDENT was a member. Unless you want to talk about shady land deals or increasing abortions, the next thing you need to talk about with Obama's Chicago history is about how many WONDERFUL things he did related to education.

In other words, there are at least 3 major ties between this issue and THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. That's news. Sorry...That's news if the President is a Republican or a Democrat not already embroiled in several dozen controversial-to-despicable nominations.

Even IF Duncan was completely and utterly unaware of HUNDREDS of cases of corporal punishment of schoolchildren by people that essentially worked under him, there is no excuse for not informing people and giving him a chance to give his side. Burying it is simply unethical.

Falze -- If you be... (Below threshold)
James H:

Falze --

If you believe this is news, your best bet is to send a quick email to a national education reporter. You should provide links to the story and succinctly, politely outline to that reporter why the story is important.

Mind you, this might not lead to the reporter covering the story. However, your effort would at least make the reporter aware of the story. You might actually get a response from the reporter!

You might also drop an email to one of the editors at Politico, Roll Call, or the Hill. The Washington political industrial complex follows those publications quite closely. If word appears there, national media might dispatch reporters to do their own stories.

It's also worth recalling that news outlets typically try to conduct a modicum of original reporting when picking up a local story with national significance. It takes time to contact local school officials, the flak in the Education Secretary's office, and assorted other players for comments. And you don't want to run with the story until those parties have the chance to comment.

That said, my best advice is to contact the national reporters. A lot of their email addresses are publicly available now ...

Funny...your advice is for ... (Below threshold)

Funny...your advice is for ME to do THEIR job for them?

Good one. Seriously, it made me laugh. I especially like how this all applies to their coverage of the Bush years. Quality humor.

Gee, mantis caught in a lie... (Below threshold)

Gee, mantis caught in a lie? Surely you jest, or not.

mantis - "And what do you know, here's Shep Shepherd covering the story on FOX News last night (I think someone's having some problems finding his way around the intertubes)."

I think someone's having some problems finding his way around a calender. The Fox story and video was posted late Wednesday 2 days after it broke in Chicago.

Funny...your advic... (Below threshold)
James H:
Funny...your advice is for ME to do THEIR job for them?

No, Falze, that's not my suggestion at all. Journalists pull the story ideas from any number of places; a reporter's not going to write a story he doesn't know about. I suggest that you write a reporter to let him know about a story, and that's it.

I have yet to see ANY of... (Below threshold)

I have yet to see ANY of the media even talk about President Obama's handling of the ice storms in Kentucky. NOT ONE.

You're not looking very hard.

Besides, I'm guessing you don't really want to see more exposure of Obama's response:

In the first real test of the Obama administration's ability to respond to a disaster, Kentucky officials are giving the federal government good marks for its response to a deadly ice storm.

Beshear asked Obama for a disaster declaration to free up federal assistance Thursday, two days after the storm hit, and Obama issued it hours later. Trucks loaded with supplies began arriving at a staging area at Fort Campbell, Ky., on Friday morning, said Mary Hudak, a spokeswoman for the Federal Emergency Management Agency.
"We have had tremendous and quick response from President Obama and his administration," Beshear said Monday. "I don't think any of our folks that have dealt with disasters before ever recall as quick a response as we got last Wednesday."

Trina Sheets, executive director of the National Emergency Management Association, based in Lexington, Ky., said that from what she's heard, FEMA's response has been very good so far. Her group represents emergency management directors from all 50 states.

"The governor's declaration request for an emergency was turned around very, very quickly by FEMA and the White House," said Sheets, who just had her power restored Monday after four days without it. "And President Obama has spoken with the governor of Kentucky on several occasions throughout the event."

Sheets said she hadn't heard any complaints so far about the federal response.

"FEMA and the Kentucky National Guard are doing everything they can to get things back up and running," Sen. Jim Bunning said.

And all this while "Obama hasn't yet named the top FEMA officials, many of whom must go through Senate confirmation."

Keep in mind that the National Emergency Management Association is a non-partisan organization. And even the local papers, while acknowledging their criticism of Democratic leaders in the past, are praising the response of elected officials.

So I agree, this story should get wider coverage.

There you go again. Again ... (Below threshold)

There you go again. Again with your ellipsed clippage, moron? Didn't you learn anything the LAST time I put back the text you carefully snipped from that article? No? Let me do it again:
"Yet more than 300,000 residents remained without power Monday and some areas had yet to see aid workers nearly a week after the storm, a fact not lost on some local authorities."
""We haven't seen FEMA. They haven't been here," said Jaime Green, a spokeswoman for the emergency operations center in Lyon County, about 95 miles northwest of Nashville, Tenn."
"Brocton Oglesby, director of emergency management in Hopkins County, said he has seen virtually no contribution from FEMA in the county, where more than half of the 27,000 homes remained without electricity."

whoops, looks like my secre... (Below threshold)

whoops, looks like my secret is out, it was a different troll (that sounds awfully similar) that posted that nefariously clipped article before. I've been exposed...

I think all trolls looks alike.

Yes. I'm a trollist.

Didn't you learn anythin... (Below threshold)

Didn't you learn anything the LAST time I put back the text you carefully snipped from that article?

Wasn't me, but I did learn something. That you don't read very well, and that you don't think before you spout off.

FEMA was on site less than 24 hours after the state of emergency was declared (in contrast with Chad's defense above of Bush that 72 hours is "standard"). Within three days, power had been restored to over 50% of the homes affected. The governor says, "I don't think any of our folks that have dealt with disasters before ever recall as quick a response". The non-partisan National Emergency Management Association says FEMA's response has been very good so far. The Republican senator says "FEMA and the Kentucky National Guard are doing everything they can".

And again, that's without a fully-staffed FEMA.

Your point seems to be nothing more than they're not done yet. Despite the right's claims to the contrary, Obama is not actually God, and cannot snap his fingers and fix 100% of the problem on day 1. There were 50,000 still without power two days ago, likely fewer today. That's out of a peak of 769,000. The local newspapers are praising the response.

Keep searching for your outrage. You'll find it only in your head.

Falze, to brian half a stor... (Below threshold)

Falze, to brian half a story (fitting his ideology) is better than none or the entire thing.

Well, Marc, given your limi... (Below threshold)

Well, Marc, given your limited reading ability, I tried to pull out just the relevant parts. But I appreciate you giving us notice that from now on whenever you cite text on another web site, you will either excerpt the entire article or none of it at all.

There are some people who a... (Below threshold)
Bruce Henry:

There are some people who are genetically immune to the brainwashing of the Eeeevill Liberal Media. They constitute about 22% of Americans. They are all Republicans, of course.
It is those brave Americans who will save us all from Demislamunistofascism.
Thank God that they are the only ones smart enough to see through the spin. The rest of us are all DUPES! DUPES, I say!

brain - "Well, Marc, g... (Below threshold)

brain - "Well, Marc, given your limited reading ability, I tried to pull out just the relevant parts"

That's his story and he's sticking with it.

No matter how lame-brained it might be.

b henry, finally, someone a... (Below threshold)

b henry, finally, someone admits it.

Heh, I'm always sure my poi... (Below threshold)

Heh, I'm always sure my point was made when you have no response.

Marc,Yeah, morons ... (Below threshold)


Yeah, morons tend to do that...see it's all empty up there so it's like an echo chamber, they say something dumb but then in echoes back and they think someone has agreed with them so they get all excited. Therefore, if the story you want to tell is that FEMA is doing 'a heck of a job' then it makes perfect sense to quote PART of a story, while carefully excising the officials that are furious that after a week they still haven't even smelled FEMA near them. And to you, if you're a moron, that's just A-OK! Then you accuse the people that actually read the story, even the stuff you tried to hide, of being the ones with reading problems. Then you curl up in the fetal position and suck your thumb, I guess. It must be a sucky way to live.

Your point seems to be n... (Below threshold)

Your point seems to be nothing more than they're not done yet.

No, actually it isn't, moron. You just keep on arguing about irrelevant points though, it's amusing.

Heh, I'm always sure my ... (Below threshold)

Heh, I'm always sure my point was made when you have no response.

Umm, no, moron, you're more like the feeble player that keeps fouling off strikes for hours on end because you know you can't get a hit - hoping that the other team will get sick of you and just leave.

I don't understand why Falz... (Below threshold)

I don't understand why Falze has decided to become a complete and utter asshole. He (or she) used to be halfway reasonable. At least as far as I could tell. Now he's just a raging lunatic who's totally obsessed with Brian.

Don't worry, Falze, the Republicans will be back on top someday. That's just the nature of the beast.

Hi, max. Are you a moron, ... (Below threshold)

Hi, max. Are you a moron, too? Let me clue you in, morons have been mucking up way too much of our world lately and the right has just been eating it and smiling. Well, I for one, have had it with trying to reason with those that have proven they are incapable of reciprocating. Therefore I have resolved, as you may have noticed, to do two things:

1) respond to moronic, false BS from the trolls here and elsewhere with factual rebuttals that make them look as foolish as they deserve.

2) instead of doing so politely and letting them think that they're even involved in a debate, smacking them down like they deserve. there is no way to have a logical discussion with a moron that can't even remember their own questions after you answer them, so I've decided to stop pretending they're capable of rational or logical thought when the evidence clearly suggests otherwise.

understand? and as for you, I don't give a rat's patoot about whether "the Republicans" are "back on top". If your brain functions normally you will notice that all of my comments are direct disprovals of moronic lie-based trolling - NOT partisan rhetoric. should the trolls decide to actually engage in debate without lying or spouting such tired nonsense that I can provide factual evidence to make them look like idiots within 30 seconds, fine. until such time - act like a moron, get treated like a moron. brian happens to be a particularly active moron at the moment as he stumbles from thread to thread making moronic comments that have no basis in truth, as I have SHOWN with actual evidence. if you don't like, well, TS. I'm sick of people acting like morons and not being treated like morons. lie down with dogs, etc...

Well, as long as you don't ... (Below threshold)

Well, as long as you don't try to deny being a complete and utter asshole, you can persue Brians affections all you want.

I'll be sure to ignore you from now on.






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