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Wednesday, September 9, 2009
Oops: NewsBusters Writer Lets the Real Right-Wing Media Agenda Slip Out
Topic: NewsBusters

A Sept. 6 NewsBusters post by Lachlan Markay complained that the Washington Post's ombudsman issued an "apology" for a profile of the head of the National Organization for Marriage, which opposes same-sex marriage, for not including opposing views. After making a point of noting that the author of the piece "says she is a bisexual and has had romantic relationships with women in the past" -- but not noting that, as County Fair's Jamison Foser points out, this pretty much blows out of the water the conservative argument that liberal reporters are incapable of being fair, let alone fawning, toward conservatives -- Markay got to the nub of the issue and, perhaps inadvertently, exposed the right-wing agenda when it comes to the media:

But features pieces are not meant to be political debates. The story focused on a person—who, in Hesse’s words, is “pleasantly, ruthlessly sane”—not, directly, on a political agenda or debate, though they were certainly corollaries to the profile.

In other words: Conservatives don't want opposing views reported when the subject is a conservative.

By contrast, NewsBusters doesn't want that same courtesy extended to feature articles on liberals:

  • On Aug. 12, Ken Shepherd complained that the Post "a 42-paragraph front-pager that amounts to gushy Kennedy hagiography, in part because it was penned by a Kennedy hagiographer."
  • On July 14, P.J. Gladnick was annoyed that the Post "published a glowing article about likely incoming AFL-CIO president, Richard Trumka" that didn't mention his purported role in "in a money laundering scheme in order to fix a Teamsters election."

If conservatives are to be only hailed in newspaper profiles, Mackay and his fellow NewsBusters should stop complaining that liberals get fawning profiles too.

Posted by Terry K. at 1:30 AM EDT

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