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Wednesday, May 28, 2014
MRC's Sharyl Attkisson Dissonance Continues
Topic: Media Research Center

A May 15 Media Research Center item by Sean Long does something we weren't sure the MRC was going to do -- call out its new BFF, former CBS reporter Sharyl Attkisson, for her shoddy reporting on vaccines:

More than simply covering the connection, some reporters, including former CBS reporter Sharyl Attkisson who reported anecdotes and interviewed many families convinced that vaccines caused their children’s autism.

Attkisson was particularly prone to report such anecdotes. Some segments, such as May 18, 2004, “Evening News” began and ended with minute long interviews with parent who blamed vaccines for their children’s autism. She even ended that story by asking, “How can it be wrong to err on the side of caution?”

In a similar broadcast on June 12, 2004, Attkisson included an anti-vaccination parent at a rally who claimed, “The CDC is going to become the Enron of the vaccine industry.” The Enron Corporation had recently collapsed in part due to fraudulent financial practices.

Years later, on April 21, 2014, Attkisson defended her vaccine reporting to CNN’s “Reliable Sources,” calling them “some of the most important stories I’ve done.”

But being the MRC, this only goes so far.  Not only does Long fail to reconcile this criticism of Attkisson with the MRC's praise of her self-proclaimed martyrdom for her coverage of the Obama administration, the MRC has approvingly added an Attkisson quote about how her former CBS bosses were purportedly "ideologically entrenched" to its "Journalists Admitting Liberal Bias" page.

There seems to be a bit of cognitive dissonance here -- the MRC can't bash Attkisson for her shoddy vaccine reporting and at the same time praise her for her similarly shoddy reporting on the Obama administration. Shouldn't the same standard be applied to all of Attkisson's reporting?

Ah, but if there weren't double standards, it wouldn't be the MRC.

Posted by Terry K. at 5:35 PM EDT

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