Picking up on a theme popularized by Al Gore, President Obama recently criticized media journalism for
promoting an “assault on reason” and for contributing to a divided culture.
“The U.S. news media typically applies hackneyed or partisan templates to political issues, often distorting rather than informing the public debate,” reports GlobalResearch:
“President Barack Obama has become the latest politician to put his toe in the raging waters of the media debate, with some mild observations about the powerful role that media outlets play in reporting – and often distorting – political events.
In an interview with The New Republic, Obama stated the obvious: ‘One of the biggest factors is going to be how the media shapes debates. If a Republican member of Congress is not punished on Fox News or by Rush Limbaugh for working with a Democrat on a bill of common interest, then you’ll see more of them doing it.’
‘The same dynamic happens on the Democratic side,’ he said. ‘I think the difference is just that the more left-leaning media outlets recognize that compromise is not a dirty word. And I think at least leaders like myself — and I include Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi in this — are willing to buck the more absolutist-wing elements in our party to try to get stuff done.’
Most politicians avoid talking about the media, GlobalResearch states: “Most spend most of their time positioning themselves for media attention because most seem to need and rely on media visibility. The media provides their political oxygen and, hence, explains why they spend so much time spinning their words with hired press secretaries, advisers and consultants. In many ways, being on the air validates a politician’s role if not his or her existence. Hence, many scramble to be interviewed for TV news and on Sunday shows. Media visibility is a key tool in the permanent campaigns most pols run for their reelections and to move up the political ladder. Much of the money they spend so much time raising also goes right back into the media for commercials. As a result, politicians usually don’t discuss their experiences with the media or their opinions about the media, perhaps out of fear of antagonizing media outlets by suggesting that they don’t operate responsibly. As is, most fear media retaliation if they step out of line or say ‘the wrong thing.’”