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Am I The Only One?

Friday, January 27, 2006

Problematic Reporting

Saying that the age of mainstream media is over is nothing new for me. Perhaps the biggest reason is the near-nonexistance of objective reporting. Whatever happened to reporting what was observed?

Show me almost any mainstream news article, and I'll show you and example. Here is a great one from the Associated Press:
"The Northwest Passage runs from the Atlantic through the Arctic to the Pacific. Global warming is melting the passage — which is only navigable during a slim window in the summer — and exposing unexplored fishing stocks and an attractive shipping route." BETH DUFF-BROWN, Associated Press Writer

Global warming is doing it? Did Ms. Duff-Brown observe this? This is fact?

And where is her editor?

Far more objective would have been something like, "The passage has been melting steadily since 1979, according the Arctic Station expert John Smith." Or even, "Climate experts from the European Geological Survey believe that global warming is melting the passage..." Don't tell us your opinion, report someone else's and tell us how qualified they are to comment.

Reporting is a lost art.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Iraqiis Are More Optimistic Than Americans

Well now, this certainly is odd. Those poor Iraqiis, remember them? Those innocent people who lived and flourished under the guiding hand of Saddam Hussein, whose futures we destroyed and whose lives we made miserable by giving them freedom?

It turns out they are overwhelmingly optimistic about their futures, according to the BBC.

How could this be? I mean, we destoyed their system of corrupt governance, we built and rebuilt their water, sewer, medical, and educational systems, and we are training hundreds of thousands of police units with the latest western techniques and equiping them with modern tools to combat lawlessness. They really ought to be misable.

The truth, of course, is that life in improving in Iraq. Throughout history, there is a significant period of civil unrest following the overthrowing of the previous government. Only the western media has forgotten this.

I suspect Iraqii women, who were previously denied access to education and other services and who are likely to be included in this poll in representative proportions, make up a large part of this voice of optimism.