In his nearly thirty years at CBS News, Emmy Award winner Bernard Goldberg earned a reputation as one of the preeminent reporters in the television news business. When he looked at his own industry, however, he saw that the media far too often ignored their primary mission: to provide objective, disinterested reporting. Again and again he saw that the news slanted to the left. For years, Goldberg appealed to reporters, producers, and network executives for more balanced reporting, but no one listened. The liberal bias continued. Now, breaking ranks and naming names, he reveals a corporate news culture in which the closed-mindedness is breathtaking and in which entertainment wins over hard news every time.
- A large majority of the press are Democrats compared with around 20% of the general population.
- When getting opinions on various news stories, they consult known liberal groups, but no conservative groups.
- They socialize and work with like-minded people, therefore, they view their stances as normal.
Their bias comes out in a distortion of facts, how people are portrayed in the news, and words used to describe ideas that do not match their own. Politicians are labelled "conservative" or "right-wing", but none are labelled "liberal" or "left-wing". Various conservative/Republican platform planks are schemes or something that has a negative connotation.
It was interesting how the media (60 Minutes in particular), who have no problem exposing corruption and questionable behavior, reacted with disdain, denial, and vindictiveness when Goldberg turns the tables. It was obvious to me that those who dish it out, can't take it.
The topics that he feels are subjected to this bias are the homeless, AIDS, men, terrorism, and race. This was very interesting because he would make a point and counter it with a "what if" scenario. For instance, Katie Couric jokingly asks if a jilted bride considered castration as a suitable remedy for the groom. Goldberg counters that with "what if" Matt Lauer were interviewing a groom in a similar situation. What if Lauer had mentioned cutting off the bride's breasts as a remedy? All Hell would break loose. Women's groups would be calling for his abusive-violence-against-women's head.
I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who rolls their eyes at the very thought of a media bias. It was eye-opening, and I'll never watch network news the same way again. Come to think of it, I never watch network news anyway. Oh well, no great loss.
By the way, Bernard Goldberg has never voted for a Republican, and voted for Bill Clinton twice.