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Monday, December 7, 2009
Bozell Lifts The Curtain, Peddles Misinformation
Topic: Media Research Center

A Dec. 3 NewsBusters post features a question-and-answer video made by Media Research Center chief Brent Bozell for his MRC Action group. It's an interesting behind-the-scenes glimpse at the partisan right-wing agenda that runs the MRC, as well as Bozell's platform for disseminating misinformation.

Bozell begins by asserting that the so-called "climate-gate" scandal over stolen emails from a major climate research Center is "hugely important to the conservative movement, and it'shugely important to the Media Research Center." That's right -- not important to science, important to right-wing politics. Bozell insists the emails "utterly incriminate the environmental movement" and show that global warming is "a fraud, that in fact they know there's been global cooling, and they have been doing things -- tricks to cover up the fact that their arguments don't work scientifically."

In fact, the emails do not disprove global warming, data was not fudged, and the allegedly incriminating claims in the emails are being cherry-picked and taken out of context.

Bozell then went on to argue against term limits with a dumb analogy:

Think about this. We talk about Cuba and Fidel Castro. We talk about Iraq and Saddam Hussein. When they would -- and the Soviet Union. When they would have their quote-unquote elections, and they would win with 98 percent of the vote or 97 percent of the vote, and we'd all laugh at the proposition, at the idea that they could get 97 percent of the vote. Here's something that's not a laughing matter. If you look at the election returns every single cycle, you will find that members of Congress in the House and the Senate are re-elected approximately 97, 98 percent of the time -- in this country they get re-elected. Why? Because they have voted to themselves so many privileges, so many advantages, that an incumbent [sic] doesn't stand a chance. That's not democracy.

Actually, incumbent advantages in America are quite different from dictatorships in which in which there is no meaningful opposition (or no opposition at all).

Bozell also insists that "there is no public demand" for health care reform,  "but the media are telling us every single day that that's what the public wants."In fact, polls have repeatedly shown that the public option has widespread support.

Bozell curiously takes on birtherism, claiming that they have to "get beyond it. Nothing good will come from this. ... Barack Obama is the president of the United States, and until he is defeated in a re-election campaign, he will remain the president of the United States." Bozell's sincerity on this might be a little easier to believe if his organization wasn't monetarily supporting the biggest media promoter of birtherism by advertising at WorldNetDaily.

Bozell then goes on to explain how "the left controls the media":

So what do you do about it? Well, the first thing you have to do is you have to realize why the Left controls the media. It is not a conspiracy. It's not that there's a cabal of left-wingers that have taken over the news media and they meet at 8 o'clock every morning to say, "what can we do to undermine the conservatives to America?" They don't do it; they don't work that way.

The liberals who are there were hired by fellow liberals because the liberals who were in charge of hiring felt that their liberal friends were the best qualified. And it's a simple formula, that's how it works. And their bias takes over, and sometimes, I don't think they even realize their bias is working.

Funny, that sounds like a conspiracy to us. Apparently, talent and aptitude for journalism has nothing to do with it.Plus, it ignores the fact that even MRC director of media analysis, Tim Graham has admitted that "the great majority of what we watch and read is not noticeably unfair or inaccurate." Which suggests that this is all a bit of a scam on the MRC's part.

He continues:

What has happened is the public is on to these reporters. When we first started in 1987, only 25 percent of the public believed that there was a media bias at all. ... Today, 89 percent of the public believes what they're getting is a reporter's personal opinion. The public now knows the bias that they're getting. It's incumbent on us to continue to expose that bias on a daily basis, because if we don't, then we lose the traction, and those numbers will go back to where they were before.

And the MRC keeps attracting money, and Bozell remains employed. And that's the important thing for the MRC.

Posted by Terry K. at 12:51 AM EST
Updated: Monday, December 7, 2009 12:57 AM EST

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