CBS claims in their latest advertising that they offer unbiased reporting. How stupid do they think we are?
Everyone knows that reporting is biased to a greater or lesser degree. Every reporter and every editor and every network CEO has a point of view and that POV gets into every story.
We all know that. Why then would you claim that up is down?
Because you think your viewers are so stupid they would believe it.
“So much for Objective Journalism. Don’t bother to look for it here — not under any byline of mine; or anyone else I can think of. With the possible exception of things like box scores, race results, and stock market tabulations, there is no such thing as Objective Journalism. The phrase itself is a pompous contradiction in terms.” ― Hunter S. Thompson, Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail ’72.
Most journalists will not admit bias. They are objective journalists. Where did this nonsensical viewpoint come from?
Thompson thought that the Columbia School of Journalism was the wellspring for the idea that highly educated reporters should tell the low masses what to think.
I rarely quote Wikipedia but they do have it correct here.
“In 1892, Joseph Pulitzer, a Hungarian-born newspaper magnate, offered Columbia University President Seth Low funding to establish the world’s first school of journalism. He sought to elevate a profession viewed more often as a common trade learned through an apprenticeship. His idea was for a center of enlightened journalism in pursuit of knowledge as well as skills in the service of democracy.”
Noblesse oblige? Stuff it.
Columbia as an Ivy League school was perfect for graduating entitled people who knew better than you or I. It continues that mission today in that a degree from Columbia is a passport into the the privileged world of the major networks, generating reporters who whine about not finding a Starbucks or Peete’s in middle America and who pay for their hotel room with a company American Express gold card.
These people used to write for Life, Newsweek, and Time. Today they line the halls of National Public Radio, The Washington Post, and the New York Times. Fox News has their elites, but with a mild conservative point of view acceptable to national advertisers.
Beyond journalism and party affiliation, however, there is a commonality among those who think they know best. Those in power with college degrees think of themselves as the officer class. Those without degrees are of course the enlisted. And officers are always superior to the enlisted. Right? They know better, right? Back to reporting.
Thompson was bitterly against Columbia’s idea that journalism was some sort of priesthood for the better good. He constantly dealt with elite reporters and knew them well. Most envied Thompson’s freedom to write what he thought, often enabled by looked down upon magazines like Rolling Stone.
“The press is a gang of cruel faggots. Journalism is not a profession or a trade. It is a cheap catch-all for fuckoffs and misfits—a false doorway to the backside of life, a filthy piss-ridden little hole nailed off by the building inspector, but just deep enough for a wino to curl up from the sidewalk and masturbate like a chimp in a zoo-cage.” Thompson, ibid.
Okay, maybe that characterization is overdramatic. But there is a deep, deep division between the wealthy reporters you see on the major networks and the people they report on. They think they know better.
But we know them and their bias even better.