Benjamin, Aaronson, Edinger & Patanzo, P.A.

News media and the truth

Growing up it always seemed strange that when reading accounts or listening to stories
from other countries that those foreign media had vested interest in the story.  There would be a
story about what was going on in the Soviet Union, only for you to find out that the story was
written by a newspaper that had ties to the Communist Party.   Or, you would hear it was a
government sponsored news agency.  Other times, a story would be broken by an entity that
reported that it was aligned with the opposition party in some country.  Sometimes and only
rarely, would you hear from these other countries that the story was accounted by an independent

With degrees in journalism and mass communication, and being taught that the truth is
the truth and political bias, religious bias, moral bias or any other type of bias did not belong in
the accurate reporting of the event these foreign accounts always bothered us.  In fact, the role of
the journalist whether in print or an electronic media was the accurate account making sure no
personal opinions skewed the accuracy.

Yet, if there is one thing that this election for President is teaching us, is that we are not
so far different from those second and third world countries as far as the news media and the truth of
the story being told.  If that was not the case, the news on FOX would virtually parrot that on
NBC which would be so similar to that on ABC which would be nearly identical to that on CBS
or even CNN.  However, on any given day, the same events are reported so drastically different
and no longer is the truth the truth, but rather we have FOX truth, NBC truth, CNN truth, etc.

Even worse than the spin on the different news stories by the different news agencies, is
the fact that by and large different news agencies have decided to adopt or be adopted by the
different political parties and various wings within them.  FOX news has become nothing more
than a cheerleader for the Republican Party and the current administration.  Yet, even during the
primaries, before Grandpa McCain was chosen as the Republican nominee, Rudy Giuliani was
given a pass by this station.  In fact, Giuliani was trumpeted by FOX news as the new savior of
the country.  Only after his campaign went up in flames did FOX news then leach on to John
McCain as their new hero de jour.

Not to be out done, NBC and specifically MS-NBC, became the anti-Bush network and
certainly with more of a bent towards supporting the Democrats.  However, NBC and MS-NBC
have taken their lack of impartiality to new heights.  MS-NBC has virtually become the Obama
campaign headquarters with rarely a negative comment about the Senator from Illinois and
hardly a positive comment about the Senator from New York.

The radio waves have been no different, from Rush Limbaugh to Shawn Hannity to
Michael Savage to the rest of the clowns on the far right, they have circled the wagons around
John McCain and have become an arm of his campaign.  Not to be outdone, Air America the
progressive radio network, has become nothing less than Obama cheerleaders, with every action
that he makes being justified and with every slip that he makes being trivialized.

There are no two people in this country that support FOX news, MS-NBC, Air America
and the right wing loons’ right  to speak as they wish, to back who they desire, and to trumpet
who they desire to win more than us.  After all, isn’t that the essence of freedom of speech, press
and democracy.  But it is time that these news organizations were honest to the listeners and to
those that don’t listen.  It is time that they acknowledge that they have left the journalistic tracks
and instead are agenda based.  It is time that we Americans realized that our news media has slipped
into third world nation status and the truth be damned as long as there is good spin.

Years ago, Walter Cronkite was voted the most trusted man in America.  Few people
know that in that same poll Harry Resoner was voted number two.  Both of these journalists,
anchormen because of their objectivity and allegiance to the truth and facts were regarded in high
esteem not just by one segment of the population but by the population in general.  Now a days, it
would be laughable to think that any of the nightly news people or the so-called journalist on the
cable networks would be thought of in that esteem.  Certainly some would be trusted by those
that agree with their political affiliation, while probably even a greater amount would distrust
them because of that same affiliation.  Walter Cronkite was trusted by the American people
because he earned it.  The clowns that we listen to on the right and left on a daily basis are not
trusted by the majority of the American people because they have earned that also.

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