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Prepping To Be Informed Not Inflamed For Super Tuesday Returns

by John on 03/14/2016

I was a guest on the Gene Rowley Show this morning talking politics and media bias.

You can hear the show here.

Gene and his gang were great; both funny and serious. After thinking about our talk, I realized that Gene made me clarify some things that I might not have articulated in this way before.

Gene raised the point that there are no news outlets that are really unbiased.

I agreed citing these reasons:

  • Most media outlets are not reaching audiences like social media is. Mainstream media cannot charge the rates they once did because the audience is not there. And whatever audience is there; the advertiser wants lower rates.
  • Most local TV stations get the majority of their revenue from cable fees.

The results of all this are:

  1. Media outlets are more concerned with helping advertisers spend more – that includes news departments.
  2. When they attract audience they are doing it with entertainment – sometimes outlandish – and not necessarily with news and facts
  3. TV news which is an entertainment medium does a lousy job of exploring the nuance of the difficult issues facing us.

Gene kindly embraced the notion from my book: the most important journalist in your life is you. He said he tells people to find the candidate that fits your ideology and philosophy and spend time reading and learning about that candidate. I agreed.

But I added this:

  • Whoever that candidate is that you embrace, go find the news or issue-related website that is diametrically opposed to that candidate and study that too. Here’s why:
  • If you are moved away from that candidate then you were not as secure in your previous beliefs or the candidate’s.
  • You can still hold those beliefs but you will get a better understanding of that candidate’s beliefs if you know the opposite of his/her beliefs.
  • Know the other side because someone you know or love will have those beliefs too. And lesson number of Informed Not Inflamed is never lose a friend over a political debate.

Gene, thanks.


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