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Tuesday, May 1, 2012
MRC Still Lashing Out At Anyone Debunking Idea Of 'Liberal Media Bias'
Topic: Media Research Center

As studies undermining the Media Research Center's cherished agenda of liberal media bias continue to pile up, the MRC has been furiously spinning them away. The latest offender is a Washington Post article examining the idea of liberal media bias.

Tim Graham, needless to say, does not approve.

In an April 30 NewsBusters post, Graham whines:

Saturday’s Washington Post included a story dismissing the public for believing the media has a bias, complete with the headline “Public has its own biases about media.”  It sounded like a twist on "I  Know You Are, But What Am I?" Media reporter Paul Farhi argued studies finding an increased perception of the media favoring “one side” since 1985 are somehow dashed because professors and their studies disagree.

Graham goes on to praise Farhi for citing right-wing media critic Tim Groseclose's claim that pretty much every media outlet has a liberal bias, then criticized him for having "quickly dismissed him" (though neither Graham nor Farhi noted the shaky methodology that Groseclose employed to reach his dubious conclusion). Graham then attacks a researcher Farhi cited, David D’Alessio, who points out that left-leaning reporting is balanced by reporting more favorable to conservatives. Graham then bashes Farhi for not identifying D’Alessio as a "liberal," even though the only evidence he offers to back up that claim is that he once "attack[ed] Richard Nixon" -- actually, D'Alessio was citing Nixon's attempts to manipulate the media by attacking its objectivity, something that the MRC is still doing today -- and that his conclusions deviate from the MRC's right-wing agenda.

Graham then nonsensically claims: "The story denying liberal bias only underlines liberal bias." Well, only if you work for the MRC, which starts with the partisan-driven -- not research-driven -- conclusion of liberal bias and then selectively cite evidence to back it up.

Graham goes on to get hilariously  huffy that Farhi mentioned the MRC in the same breath as Media Matters:

Dear Paul: FAIR was founded in 1986, and the MRC in 1987 (and technically, Brent Bozell's and Brent Baker's MRC was under way at the National Conservative Foundation in 1985). It's at best misleading to pair the MRC on a timeline with Media Matters, which Hillary Clinton helped start in 2004. The MRC, celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, deserves to be in a "long ago" sentence.

Graham concludes by clinging to his preconceived notions:

Here's the big picture: the liberal media may not be more biased to the left today than it was in the of Reagan's tenure in 1985, but that's not the point. The point is the public is smart/jaded enough to realize now that the liberal media can't pretend not be liberal -- and yet, they keep pretending. Farhi's piece reads like "there's little to the idea we're more biased than we were in 1985 -- and we were denying it, then, too."

Graham doesn't seem to know the difference between political talking points and research. And if you've seen what passes for research at the MRC, you'd know why that is.

Posted by Terry K. at 11:49 AM EDT

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