Excellent article here (link above) about mass media irresponsibility, with lots of pertinent comments.
"To quote SpiderMan of all things, with great power comes great responsibility. It matters how you ask the question, and it matters how you tell the story. I understand the pressure the media is under. They have to feed the beast 24/7. I’ve been there, and my column is only once/month.
But are they reporting the news, or making the news?
More often then not, it seems to me that they’re either making the news, sexing up the news, or just making shit up."
"I want to be able to read the New York Times or watch CNN, or listen to NPR and be able to trust what they’re telling me. Since I can’t do that, since the media is no longer fulfilling their basic function, I have to blog, and I have to read blogs.
It pisses me off, because I had better things to do this decade than be my own news service. I don’t like having to read transcripts of press conferences because I can’t trust the media to even write down what was said correctly. I don’t like having to spend hours finding real experts on the web to analyze how this or that media expert has distorted the facts. I don’t like having to pore through the blogs of journalists, soldiers and Iraqi citizens so I can get some inkling of how things are really going, without the hype. Even though I do it, I don’t even like having to download the Brookings report once/month in order to see what the numbers say about how the war is going.
But I have to do all that, because its the only way I can truly be an informed citizen.
I guess what I’m trying to say is that most of all, I blame the media for being incompetent."
But, this is the same person who says earlier in the post:
"One of the ironies for me as a blogger is that the more I just “toss off something” the more responses I get. If I present a well-reasoned, well-articulated argument, no one comments. Vent a little in the middle of the night, and I get 100 comments."
Seems like one of those Morton’s forks things to me.
What’s a Morton’s Fork?
Morton’s Fork is an expression that describes a choice between two equally unpleasant alternatives, or two lines of reasoning that lead to the same unpleasant conclusion. It is analogous to the expressions "between the devil and the deep sea" or "from the frying pan to the fire".
The expression originates from a policy of tax collection devised by John Morton, Lord Chancellor in 1487, under the rule of Henry VII. His approach was that if the subject lived in luxury and had clearly spent a lot of money on himself, he obviously had sufficient income to spare for the king. Alternatively, if the subject lived frugally, and showed no sign of being wealthy, he must have had substantial savings and could therefore afford to give it to the king. These arguments were the two prongs of the fork and regardless of whether the subject was rich or poor, he didn’t have a favourable choice.
My phraseology in the posting was becuase Morton’s Fork has been involved in recent discussion on Books, Inq.