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Friday, April 3, 2009
Floyd Brown Misleads on Media
Topic: Horowitz

Floyd Brown is proving himself to be as mendacious about the media as he is about President Obama.

Brown -- as we've detailed, the smearmonger who's the new head of the right-wing attack group Western Journalism Center -- asserts in an April 2 FrontPageMag column that the New York Times "missed" Obama's Special Olympics remark during his appearance on Jay Leno's show. In fact, the Times ran a story and blog post on Obama's apology for the remark, as well as publishing the complete transcript of the appearance on its website.

The premise of Brown's column is little more than a parroting of talking points from the Media Research Center -- that a "politically correct and liberal-biased newspaper industry that engages in censorship is the real reason for the industry’s woes and decline," not the paradigm shift from print to online. Brown cites a poll claiming that "fewer than 20 percent of Americans said they could believe “all or most” media reporting" without noting that organizations like the MRC have spent millions of dollars over many years to raise doubts about the media and promote anecdotal evidence of "liberal bias" while ignoring evidence to the contrary.

In railing against the "liberal-biased newspaper industry" for losing money, Brown fails to mention that the three most prominent conservative newspapers -- the New York Post, the Washington Times, and the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review -- were money-losers long before the current newspaper crisis, and the only reason they remain in business is because of the deep pockets of their billionaire owners.

Brown also doesn't seem to understand that accusations of press "censorship" that he makes go both ways. We could claim, for example, that Brown is engaging in "censorship" by not highlighting our WJC profile on his WJC blog, even though it appeared at the Huffington Post, which has higher traffic than some of the websites Brown links to, and even though it would be of interest to his readers.

The general cluelessness of Brown's media critique demonstrates he cares nothing about genuine journalism and would seem to be a harbinger of how he plans to manipulate the WJC -- as a partisan cudgel against Obama.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:30 AM EDT

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