So I’m listening to NPR this weekend and there is a professor discussing the new reality of journalism. And to paraphrase badly, he describes the reality as being a donut. The donut hole are the issues, or realities that all parties can agree on. The donut itself are the areas that require balanced journalistic effort…present both sides of the issue: fact checked and properly sourced. And the space outside the donut are the areas that most people can agree are non-issues. As an example, he stated that 40 years ago, the Obama birth certificate issue would have been a non-issue…it was so far outside the norm that it would have received no validation in the media.
He further suggested that the issue of global warming should receive the same lack of attention. The overwhelming majority of the scientific community agrees that it is real. To suggest otherwise is to embrace a fringe belief based on hyperbole and politics.
Oh, if it were only that easy. In fact, if it were that easy, I’m afraid Fox News would have to reduce it’s programming from 24 hours, to about 2. The proliferation of right-wing talk radio, followed shortly by media giant Rupert Murdoch’s Fox News, and the response from MSNBC and other flatly biased liberal news organizations have created a scenario where, as the professor said, the donut has been blown to pieces.
Nietzsche said “there are no facts, only interpretations” but I don’t buy it. I think we can all agree that the sun will come up tomorrow…and that if it is out, it is daytime. Interpretation perhaps, but a truth within the dount hole.
It’s past time for reasonable people to stand up and call BS on the biased, merchants of spin. On both sides of the aisle. It’s past time we came to the consensus that some things are not real and refuse to entertain them in the public discourse. Crap is crap…”if it walks like a duck” can become our Mantra.
Look, everyone views things through the prism of their own experience. I’m just suggesting it’s time for the critical thinker to stand up and be counted…and to have the moral authority to discount that which is false. It’s not a radical thought. It’s what brought down Joe McCarthy. It’s what keeps the donut hole full…