Friday, 02 December 2016

Fewer Americans Trust Mainstream Media

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When Michael Goodwin, a 10-year veteran writer for the New York Times, saw the extent of the bias displayed by the Times in its coverage of the recent presidential electdon, and by the mainstream media in general, he called it “shameful”:

The shameful display of naked partisanship by the elite media is unlike anything seen in modern America.

The largest broadcast networks — CBS, NBC and ABC — and major newspapers like the New York Times and Washington Post have jettisoned all pretense of fair play. Their fierce determination to keep Trump out of the Oval Office has no precedent.

Goodwin spent 10 years writing for the Times, moving up the ladder from reporter to City Hall Bureau Chief before leaving to write elsewhere. He has a right to complain and to call out the elite media for its bias:

I know because I was one of them. I started at the Times while the Vietnam War and the civil rights movement raged, and was full of certainty about right and wrong.

But now, as a reporter writing from outside the Times, he can see the blatant bias:

It’s pure bias, which the Times fancies itself an expert in detecting in others, but is blissfully tolerant of in itself.... It’s a complete break with the paper’s own traditions.

Goodwin isn’t alone, by any means. For years Gallup has been asking Americans about their level of trust and confidence in the mass media “to report the news fully, accurately and fairly.” In September that “trust and confidence” dropped to the lowest level in Gallup polling history, with just 32 percent saying they have a great deal or fair amount of trust in the media.

On October 1 Martin Armstrong, another observer of the decline of media credibility, counted the number of newspapers across the country supporting one of the two major-party candidates. Of the 91 papers he found which had made an endorsement for either candidate, 87 of them endorsed Hillary Clinton while just four endorsed Donald Trump. Upon further investigation Armstrong uncovered substantial evidence indicating that there was collusion among the media, that it “willingly conspired to make Hillary president.”

What is ringing the death knell for the mainstream media isn’t just the declining lack of trust by Americans, but (in the case of the printed word) declining readership. Observed Armstrong: “The younger generation does not buy newspapers and magazines. Their end is near.”

Concluded Gallup:

The divisive presidential election this year may be corroding Americans' trust and confidence in the media, particularly among Republicans who may believe the "mainstream media" are too hyperfocused on every controversial statement or policy proposal from Trump while devoting far less attention to controversies surrounding the Clinton campaign.

However, the slide in media trust has been happening for the past decade. Before 2004, it was common for a majority of Americans to profess at least some trust in the mass media, but since then, less than half of Americans feel that way. Now, only about a third of the U.S. has any trust in the Fourth Estate, a stunning development for an institution designed to inform the public.

Not only does this bode ill for the Fourth Estate, but it represents an important and growing opportunity for the alternate media to present the news fairly, accurately, and completely. For those involved in the freedom fight it raises ever higher the standards to which they must repair as they make their case for liberty.

 

An Ivy League graduate and former investment advisor, Bob is a regular contributor to The New American magazine and blogs frequently at LightFromTheRight.com, primarily on economics and politics. He can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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