Mark Tucker : Journal

Nominations: Find me a truly objective news source

Posted in Uncategorized by marktucker on September 15, 2008

Here’s my question: Where can anyone find a source for news that does not have a political slant? Is there one? Is it even possible? I sit here, trying to get informed about the real issues of this election, and everywhere I turn, it’s getting so incredibly obvious that almost every news source has an ulterior motive, a political slant, an agenda, a dog in the race.

Olbermann and Maddow and Matthews — I love them, but no way. Actually, I can’t even watch Maddow and Olbermann any more. Way too biased. I’m actually waiting for Olbermann’s head to actually explode one night, on-air. No way in hell that FoxNews is allowed on inside my house; the button for channel 48 is permanently banned, and actually physically ripped off of the TV. CNN is okay; I do like that Christine Amanpour woman. NY Times seems skewed way to the left, even though I read the online version every day. Tom Friedman is my favorite.

It just bugs me that I feel that everyone — every news program — is subtley trying to sell me on their skew. Please recommend an objective news source — a publication that’s truly out to find the truth. And bonus points for anyone who can steer me to the guy that’s truly responsible for this Subprime Mortgage Hell that we’re in right now. I’ve got a brand new set of garden shears that I’d love to try out.


27 Responses

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  1. Troy said, on September 15, 2008 at 11:29 pm

    BBC is actually doing a very good job of trying to be fair. Almost every cable company includes the BBC for free, so look for it. Interesting to see how others see us.
    BTW Just started Friedman’s new book today, can’t wait to get in deeper

  2. william said, on September 16, 2008 at 6:27 am

    You don’t say so in your post, but it seems that you are hinting that there may have been a time when reporting was objective. That borders on nostalgia. I want to ask for intelligent reporting. That will have a bias, too. My dirty lens suggests that there might have been more of that in the past.

    Photographers get used to looking through all sorts of lenses, of shaping a reality they desire, full of agendas. Images are not neutral. Neither is writing. Whether photographer or artist, our bias begins when we ask the first question.

    More intelligence, better questions. Maybe.

    I just found your blog. I have been a huge fan of your photos for a long time. Wrote you a fan’s note once. Glad you are doing this.

  3. Chuck said, on September 16, 2008 at 6:29 am

    Try CSPAN for objective coverage!

  4. Frank Petronio said, on September 16, 2008 at 6:48 am

    It is impossible for any news to be objective so get over the fantasy of it having ever been objective. Walter Cronkite was as biased as any of the modern journalists, albeit with a classier presentation.

    Also journalism has gotten sloppier and sloppier, but craft is another issue. They are all short-handed and editing sucks. I’d trust the in-depth first-person reportage of something like the Atlantic McCain article more than most things though, I bet that is pretty well written and researched.

    Look at it this way, I bet every article about you that has been published in the photo trade press has been “off” in some way, even the puff pieces. I know that’s been the case with me. PDN is one of the worst, but they all get things wrong, sometimes sending the wrong impression out to the public with subtle nuances that imply more or worse than you intended. Now pretend your press coverage was magnified 1000X and that is exactly the same thing that is happening to people in the national news.

    Haven’t you been close to a simple local story — a housefire or real estate transaction — a friend in the restaurant business — and seen the local news get their story wrong? Same thing happens at the national level too.

    I try to get my news from multiple sources, even FOX. Give Rush a listen every now and then as they do make some good arguments sometimes. I rather know they are outright biased than these fakers who pretend to be objective.

  5. marktucker said, on September 16, 2008 at 7:59 am

    Here’s an interesting site. Compares number of news articles on McCain and Obama, as we near the election.

    (No indication how biased and skewed they are though!)

  6. Cameron Davidson said, on September 16, 2008 at 8:46 am

    Here is what I do:

    Read the NY Times (online), the Washington Post (at breakfast), BBC (online) and Wall Street Journal (online.)

    I understand the slant from the Times and Post, BBC seems impartial and the WSJ will give the view from the large business and Republican side.

    After reading the topics of interest, I then make up my mind on what is important, what is spin and what is fluff.

    If I was going to choose one source for my news, I may consider the Christian Science Monitor as a sole source. They tend to give many viewpoints to their stories. I rarely read it, but when I have, I found it fairly impartial.

  7. David said, on September 16, 2008 at 9:07 am

    I recommend the NewsHour with Jim Lehrer on PBS each night. They begin with a 10 minute summary of the day’s main news (real news — not celebrity news or fluffy scandals) and then have a series of in-depth discussions or reports about four or five of the main headlines. They do have guests with opposing viewpoints, but the hosts don’t take sides. It can seem dry at first, but the more I watch it, the more I like it/

    Also recommended: “The Week” magazine, which rounds up news stories from across a spectrum of print publications and summarizes them each week. Rather crucially, they also include viewpoints from outside the United States, which we rarely see in the US.

  8. David Johnson said, on September 16, 2008 at 9:57 am

    Check out GPS with Fareed Zakaria on CNN Sundays. Great show. Good luck finding anything else.

  9. David Bean said, on September 16, 2008 at 11:51 am

    Very interesting non-partisan study showing how the media bias play out. Bottom line is: every news network is biased. Everyone but Fox leans to the left, Fox to the right. But Fox leans right much less than the others lean left.

    So in a sense (and I know you don’t want to hear this) Fox is the most balanced of all of them according to this study.

    The worst according to this are MSNBC and NPR radio. And as much as I love NPR have to admit they are sooo biased.

    Don’t shoot me, I’m just the messenger.

  10. daniel sheehan said, on September 16, 2008 at 1:17 pm

    Everyone has their own opinion and point of view. The idea of objectivity is nice but in reality seems to be an abstraction. We all have our own self interest. It is good to keep track of both sides like as well as Fox and the rest of the “mainstream” media.

  11. vanderleun said, on September 16, 2008 at 2:17 pm

    One source would be the “news” sections –NOT the opinion sections — of the Wall Street Journal.

    Since many WSJ readers are going to actually put money down on the news items, it behooves the Journal to keep the news items as close to fact as possible.

    Again, not the views of the Journal but the news of the journal.

  12. patrick said, on September 16, 2008 at 9:51 pm

    BBC is the way to go. Then again, FOX & Co calls that leftist/liberal propaganda because they are actually asking hard question to whomever is in power, which now happens to be the Bush administration.

    Did I mention I detest what US prime time news coverage has turned into? Rating-hunting entertainment with no fact-based reporting (facts only used subjectively) and discussions at a 4th grader level.

  13. sille naj said, on September 17, 2008 at 8:05 am

    During the campaign season I wind up watching Top Gear. It is as close to the political process as I like to be. Somehow watching three guys drive around in $250k cars puts everything in perspective.

  14. nancy said, on November 10, 2008 at 8:36 am

    i tend to think all that would be needed is for a news bit to give who, what, when, where, without adjectives. any how or why reported via a quote from the who would provide information in a way that avoids the reporter’s initiating an emotional reaction/response. the quote itself could of course have impact but provided the reporter doesn’t select quotes for the purpose of sway the reaction/response is assigned to the who for the public to make their own determinations about.

  15. zarxo said, on May 1, 2009 at 10:06 am

    I am asking that now, has anyone found a website that does good journalism? If that is even equitable to say.

    I used to watch the yahoo posts but lately since Obama ran and is now the man, their news are a bit off it seems. Google all for Obama. Fox is it still too right? I think NSNBC is just like Yahoo, right?

    I like Obama, am a Centrist–but I still do not care for his policies or his puppy. :)

    Why can’t people be liberal and not spend, is that just a fallacy? I mean, I am a humanist (but I keep it under wraps) since I edge to conservative spending, yet I am gay. Go figure!

    I was viewing Mc Clatchey, but they are so leftist that they wanted to filter out non-agreeable posts. ..and my last response to them was, “if you do this, why even have dialogue?”.

    I am reading some articles from Thomas Kuhn for class this term, how fitting. It seems that paradigm concept is now in our news, our politics and our universities. For those who disagree with the static realiy proposed by Aristotle, we sure are locking “into one,” unconsciously.

    Kuhn said, “frameworks must be lived with and explored before they can be broken.”

    “…a new candidate for a paradigm emerges, and a battle over iits acceptance emerges–these are the paradigm wars.”

    Fitting eh?

    I am open to some good objecive news links, please advise.

  16. marktucker said, on May 1, 2009 at 10:10 am

    to zarxo:

    fat chance you’ll find anything. read recent NYT article on this: “There’s no money in being middle of the road”. People want controversy, and someone to side with. Pick your poison: MSNBC or Fox. In my book, both are unwatchable.

  17. zarxo said, on May 1, 2009 at 5:54 pm

    I thouight about loading up my own domain and have it stationed with a hosting company in the UK, it should be safe there. :) But I read its terms and I got a sad face. People can pull a plug on anything now. Dag.

    I am a centrist, a humanist, a conservative, a queer, not a big spending here, but where is there when there is no here. :(

    I hate these repeating social patterns: reminds me European Literature after the 1800s, social change–many reverted to communism with the little C, now its socialism with the big S.

    Okay, we have it, a shifting paradigm–but “do we have to get crazy” in doing so?

    I think the craziness comes from set-theories in any arena, which have failed to be flexible, so it seems and its “real” but that changes are so not forgiving becuase the former powers were not embracing–of new change.

    With the economy, is a true example, but one would experience the exact same shift in a science deptarment whereas a new paradigm gained momentum and was forcing old views to the side. Does it have to be a “all or nothing” attitude?–and during this change, the innoncent get ignored, plowed, ran over–and I am reminded of Thoreau. He makes a commet about laborers laying down the RR tracks then to become run over by the train itself–this seems fitting for America today and its politics and culture. Hum.

    –and I will sigh to myself what Thoreau said:

    “If we were left soley to the wordy wit of legislators in Congress for our guidance, uncorrected by the seasonable experience and the effectual complaints of the people, America would not long retain her rank among the nations” (Civil Disobedience).

  18. Andy said, on June 8, 2009 at 3:52 am

    The BBC unbiased!!!!

    In the UK they are called the Biased Broadcasting Coporation!

    They have proven(reasearch and officaal inquiries) to be biased in favour of Palestine, the European Uniion, Homosexual Rights, Islam (one top news reader agreed they would bw willing throw the Bible in the rubiish bin – but would never do it with the Koran) – I could go on forever literally.

    It’s probably because those that claim the BBC is unbiased, don’t live in the UK and only use the BBC for international news….otherwise only the blind would think they are unbiased.

    One small example – They received over 50,000 complaints against the Jerry Springer show and still broadcast – received on 5 complaints on a programme highlighting Muslim violence and intimidation (and stopped the broadcast). Bare this in mind remembering that the BBC is a PUBLIC SERVICE broadcaster being funded by what is effectively a compulsory tax!

    They used to be good – but are now simply instruments of the state with its obvious BIAS.

    So……look more closely when watching the BBC.

    Andy Clarke

  19. zarxo said, on June 8, 2009 at 11:43 am

    BBC: very good reply thank you sir.

  20. Aime Casavant said, on July 1, 2009 at 10:14 pm

    Newshour With Jim Leherer.

  21. Alexander King-Martin said, on September 1, 2009 at 8:31 pm

    Don’t let the name fool you- the Christian Science Monitor is actually a fantastic and relatively objective source of news. It’s a weekly print newspaper and daily online news source. It was established by the founder of the Church of Christ, Scientist back in 1908. While there is a section online where you can read spiritually oriented material, the CSM is not a platform for evangelizing and the vast majority of published stories are about international and U.S. news.

  22. Jim Cyr said, on November 3, 2009 at 11:10 am

    As an ex-leftist activist who ALWAYS tried hard to find unbiased news, I can tell you that many posts on here are laughable. I USED to think the way to go was to read things like Columbia Journalism Review, Editor & Publisher, because they were sort of the “referees” who could steer you in a great direction. THEN even THEY became propagandistic (it was simply undeniable after CJR appointed The Nation’s Victor Navasky as its editor………… of the hugest leftist activists in the country).
    Now, leftists scream that FOX news is biased, when they are the ONLY major outlet who really tries day in and day out for some biased. They are consersvative ONLY IN COMPARISON. They actively seek out leftist and far-leftists to appear every day to present both sides. That’s a FACT. CNN won’t. PSMBC won’t. They engage in tokenism…………a moderate Republican here and there, and then they insist on calling them conservative. They don’t even know the meaning of the word. They have one goal and one goal only: propaganda.
    The 3 networks are silly. So leftist they are just silly.
    BBC and Christian Science Monitor? This ex-leftis USED to read/watch them with passion, back in the day!! You simply have to be kidding me……
    Then the old rags………NYT, PBS, Washington Post, etc. etc. etc.
    The Wall Street Journal’s news section is waaaaay leftist, and the editorial pages are waaay conservative (but still have leftist columnists on a regular basis). That may be your best bet. I canceled my subscription because I don’t need “news writers” propagandizing to me………

  23. commonsense.... said, on July 1, 2011 at 9:10 am

    BBC, Reuters, NPR (right-wing propaganda notwithstanding), Fareed Zakaria on CNN, and a large number of FOREIGN newspapers.

    I haven’t read the Christian Science Monitor for a long time, but it used to be good. Before Rupert Murdoch bought it, the Wall Street Journal was also very good.

  24. b said, on July 26, 2011 at 12:11 pm

    All news sources are subjective! Go invent your own world and life. Organizing information and freedom is the decay of people.

  25. mike said, on January 18, 2012 at 5:19 am

    The only really objective news I’ve seen in daily print is the Science section of the Wall Street Journal.

  26. DWKeller said, on August 27, 2012 at 11:24 pm

    You need to turn to yourself for objective “news”. Each day you know what feels right. But real news? Avoid commentary for the most part. Listen to many on what we refer to as the “right” and “left”.

    For me: Reason web site, Fox news (but light on commentary), BBC web site, CNN occasionally (tho honestly they are hard for me to watch), never MSNBC (never any real news), WSJ occasionally, The Economist weekly mag, NYT occasionally (but never the editorial section), LA Times (live there) but ignore editorials – most slanted to left, NPR occasionally, CSM occasionally, Russia Today, Real Clear Politics (gives many different views), and a few others.

    But you need to know truth or you can easily get into just agreeing with someone’s opinion.

    My bias: Libertarian, God, Spiritual Evolution.

  27. Kenneth LaVoie said, on November 23, 2012 at 5:12 am

    I was looking for the same thing. The Agenda 21 issue has me scared as well as O’Bama possibly bring the number of nuclear warheads to 300 +/-, creating a situation where a first strike from China (with or without Russia) would take out most of our warheads, rendering us impotent for a retaliatory strike. The information I’m finding on the conservative side has such an energy of “fear mongering” that I’m having a hard time believing it. It would seem that if the conservatives want us to see the truth, they would be a little more … truthful (assuming they’re being a little sensationalist now, that is.)

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