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Dealing with media bias

November 16, 2016

Media bias is among the largest problems our democracies have, and I don’t have to tell you in which direction that bias goes. This election has been a truly learning experience: MRC/YouGov Poll: Most Voters Saw, Rejected News Media Bias. Here are the reported stats:

Key findings:

7 in 10 (69%) voters do not believe the news media are honest and truthful.
8 in 10 (78%) of voters believe the news coverage of the presidential campaign was biased, with nearly a 3-to-1 majority believing the media were for Clinton (59%) vs. for Trump (21%).
Even 1/3 (32%) of Clinton voters believe the media were “pro-Clinton.”
8% of Trump voters said they would have voted for Clinton if they had believed what the media were saying about Trump.
97% of voters said they did not let the media’s bias influence their vote.

It is this last one that is the most ludicrous finding. It is impossible not to be influenced by the media and anyone who thinks they are not is kidding themselves in a very comprehensive way. The media are like crowd noise at a football match which affects not just the players but the referees. The number of so-called conservatives I met with during the election who were saying things that came straight out of the New York Times was astonishing.

It was therefore interesting to read the second editorial in The Oz this morning: Making the media listen again. It begins:

Donald Trump’s victory has exposed serious flaws in so-called quality media, mainly a refusal of many ideologues to deal with facts.

If “ideologues” is the new word for journalists, I could not agree more. So this is what they think should be done, which I agree with while doubting it is even remotely likely:

Best report the facts, listen to the public and share a variety of opinions.

A variety of opinions on the pages of a paper you no longer trust is not going to work. You need to be able to balance what is found there with sources that are seeing the world as you see it yourself. What made following the election so that I could see more clearly what was going on depended on the following online sources, of which there were others from time to time. I didn’t necessarily agree with everything they wrote, or even their general political line, but they did give me a different perspective and helped to anchor my thoughts in the midst of a maelstrom. These are the ones that worked for me in alphabetical order:

Ace of Spades
Atlas Shrugs
BadBlueNews
Breitbart
Drudge
FrontPageMag
Instapundit
Lucianne
Powerline
PJ Media
Quadrant
Stefan Molyneux
Taki’s Mag
VDare

The MSM has discredited itself. For those of us on this side of politics, reading newspapers or watching the news will now and forever be an endurance test in getting through presentations and articles we no longer trust. At least, for now, there are alternatives. To a very important extent, Donald Trump is president-elect because of the alternative media. Watch below:

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