The Iraq War marked the beginning of the end of network news coverage. Viewers saw the juxtaposition of the embedded correspondents reporting the war as it was actually unfolding and the jaundiced, biased, negative coverage of these same events in the network newsrooms.Of course, Morris is careful to exempt Fox from his criticism. Could that be because he's on their payroll?
While U.S. and British troops advanced without serious opposition and with a minimum of casualties, the media worried loudly about disaster scenarios that never came to pass. The Turks weren’t letting our troops through. There would be no two front war! Our supply lines were over-extended! Guerrilla attacks would leave our troops without food or ammo! Saddam would blow up the oil wells and trigger an eco-disaster from which it would take decades to recover! We were being sucked into house-by-house, street-by-street fighting in the capital! We didn’t have enough troops! And, when the war was won, the networks and the newspapers fixated on the priceless artifacts that had been looted from the Baghdad Museum!
None of it happened. Now with the embedded correspondents withdrawn, these same networks and news sources tell us we face a quagmire in which we will lose dozens of soldiers each month for years and assure us that President Bush lied when he said there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq. When the weapons are found and the killing slows or stops, the networks will have moved on to other stories.
The reason people aren’t watching network news and are canceling their subscriptions to establishment press organs is that they are fed up with the manipulation and deliberate juggling of the news they see and read each day. An increasingly educated electorate can spot bias with greater acumen and astuteness than ever before.
Wednesday, August 13, 2003
Dick Morris looks at the story the NY Times had a few days ago about the drop off on people watching TV news. He thinks that people are simply fed up with how the networks cover the news and are getting their news elsewhere, like on the Internet. Of course, we have no empirical way of measuring that. It may well be a combination of the Times' thesis that people are burned out with Morris' thesis that people grew contemptuous of the network coverage of the war. I know that I certainly found the spin that some of the networks put on the war coverage to be extremely irritated and one-sided. As Morris says
Posted by Betsy Newmark at 5:35 AM