Thursday, October 17, 2013

There's good news tonight, Mr. and Mrs. America

Let's all just have another beer, watch the playoffs and celebrate this unusual outbreak of vertebrosity in a couple of too-often-spineless institutions: journalism and academia.

First up, The Fox Nation gets the vapors over a story brought to daylight by Poynter: The guy in charge of letters at the LA Times isn't going to run any more letters from climate loonies (though the paper won't stop their commenting on articles, letters, Op-Eds or whatever). Here's the core of his explanation:

Simply put, I do my best to keep errors of fact off the letters page; when one does run, a correction is published. Saying "there's no sign humans have caused climate change" is not stating an opinion, it's asserting a factual inaccuracy.

So the real question isn't "CENSORSHIP???" The real question is "why does The Fox Nation hate freedom???"

As you can imagine, that got the day off to a good start. And then came word that those wacky kids at The College Fix had trapped another librul professor!

A professor at the University of Arizona says that viewers of Fox News are less informed than viewers of CNN and MSNBC. Read the story and watch the video at the College Fix.

And so indeed goes the College Fix story. (Though, kids, you really need to work on those headlines*.) What's refreshing, as opposed to the craven weaseldom exhibited last week by the Wisconsin directional assaulted by the College Fix shock troops, is the university's response:

“It would be remiss for a professor of comparative politics and policymaking not to use the relevant examples of the day,” Sigurdson said in an email. “He is clear about when he’s citing published research and when he’s offering insights based on his expertise. He encourages students to ask questions and add comments during the lectures."

In other words, he wasn't just right about the data, he was doing his job. And if you don't like that, go start a newspaper where you can scream to your little heart's content about those pesky libruls and their climate change. As you seem to have already done.

* OK, here's what an editing class should tell you about adjectives in a hed like "Professor Tells Students Fox News Viewers Are Ignorant": "Big" is a value judgment; "bigger" is a fact. "I got a big raise" is a subjective determination of how you feel about your salary and your value. "I got a bigger raise than last year" is a matter of decimal points.The College Fix lede says the evil commie professor told his captive viewers that Fox viewers are "less informed" than those who watch grownup news, which is an accurate reflection of the research on the topic. If he called them "ignorant" -- which, while accurate, would be a value judgment -- there's no evidence to that effect.


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3:01 AM, October 18, 2013  
Blogger The Ridger, FCD said...

The LA Times also refused to run a bunch of letters complaining about how Obama & Congress were exempt from Obamacare. Why? They say "Simply put, this objection to the president's healthcare law is based on a falsehood, and letters that have an untrue basis (for example, ones that say there's no sign humans have caused climate change) do not get printed."

7:36 PM, October 18, 2013  

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