‘Partisan Media’ Destroys All Things Equally

Obamacare failed because MSNBC didn’t “push back hard enough” against Fox:

Stelter featured two partisan commentators, Marc Lamont Hill and Ben Ferguson, to debate the divisiveness of the issue not as pundits but as “regular people” confronting the barrage of coverage.

The crux of the disagreement came over why the right had been so successful at getting the anti-Obamacare narrative to stick. Hill argued that it was because the so-called liberal media (of which MSNBC is a metonym) had been unsuccessful in forcefully countering Fox News’ drumbeat of criticism, while Ferguson said the narrative was a representation of a reality in which millions had their coverage cancelled.

Or it could be that supposedly non-partisan media has just given the fuck up, and now wishes for nothing more in a story than two equal opposites that can be listed together, thus absolving themselves of institutional responsibility for sorting out bullshit from not.

It could be that inviting partisan pundits on “opposing” sides to debate the issue of why the issue is so debatable is a fucking idiotic thing to do, the sort of thing you do when you don’t want to come to any sort of factual conclusion.

It could be that asking pundits to pretend to be regular people is stupdendously dumber than, I DON’T FUCKIN’ KNOW, interviewing some regular people about where they are getting their Obamacare information and why they are trusting the sources they have.

It could be that declaring MSNBC and Fox News the same “partisan media” thing and then having people on to lament that one half of that thing isn’t viciously anti-fact enough to adequately oppose the other vicious, anti-fact thing isn’t a contribution to the conversation at all.


6 thoughts on “‘Partisan Media’ Destroys All Things Equally

  1. It would appear that journalism has voluntarily subsumed itself to be a form of double-entry accounting. A debit on one side of the ledger must have a corresponding credit on the other side, or the books don’t balance, and all hell breaks loose.
    Spoiler alert: Not everything in life balances. Sometimes life isn’t fair. Sometimes one person gaining recognition of a civil or human right doesn’t detract from someone else already having that recognition. It’s not zero sum.

  2. Fox lies. No question about that. But without a willingness to spout equal and opposite lies, MSNBC is a bit hamstrung.
    Out of, what was it?, 43 million? uninsured, Obamacare is insuring a few million. It’s doing it by pouring money on insurance companies, not on human beings when they need medical care. (Industry insiders plainly say the ” law is a gift to insurance companies.”)
    So defenders are left with pointing out that some more people have been covered — which is Good with a capital G! — while the screaming meemies scream “You’re being ripped off!” “Death panels!”
    To me, at least, it’s pretty obvious why one message gets through and the other one sounds like mumbling in a corner.
    The biggest contribution of Obamacare may not be providing healthcare, which it does rather minimally given the scale of our problems. It may be drilling it into the concrete skulls in the US that government can be useful in funding healthcare. Now maybe we can get on with the business of joining the rest of the industrialized world on this.

  3. I just LOVE how the idea of partisan media making the ACA divisive is solely because MSNBC didn’t push back enough. But the divisiveness of partisan media had absolutely nothing to do with Faux News, the rest of the Murdoch Empire, etc.

  4. What it really amounts to is the old Fairness Doctrine applies whenever facts are presented, so that the fact-free can have their say and it must be taken seriously. However, no Fairness Doctrine applies going the other way; that would be oppression.

Comments are closed.