Tuesday, July 20, 2004

The New York Times > Movies > Movie Review | 'Outfoxed': Spin Zones, Flag Waving and Shouting to Catch a Fox:: Only the New York Times would give a review and claim the following:
The partisan nature of "Outfoxed," a series of expository and analytical talking-head segments interspersed with the high-octane flag-draped shouting-head segments that have become Fox's trademark, is obvious. It is also, therefore, a little beside the point.
In my own judgment, Fox's hard news (which is labeled as hard news) is more objective, and presents both sides. Reporting from Iraq shows both political & economic infrastructure being rebuilt and road-side bombs killing people trying to do it. Reporting on the election almost always is based on straight quotes from either party or relevant organization. When the pundits get on, their opinions are labeled as such, even if they shout -- which happens on EVERY channel.

A few internal memos are given to show the bias. Fox claims that those are a few of thousands of memos, and would release them all to clear the record if CNN and the network news shows did the same. Now that is a real challenge to the established media. Clearly, the other parties won't release their memos, as their bias is so obvious it is clich├ęd.

By the way, go here for reporting on good news from Iraq. This comment there is interesting:
Another fortnight in Iraq, another fortnight's worth of news about terrorism, hostages, military and civilian casualties, faulty intelligence in the run-up to war, and the problems of reconstruction, as our mainstream media continues to focus overwhelmingly on bad news from the Mesopotamian quagmire. And yet, some still think that the latest coverage is actually too positive - as in this Reuters story: "Some U.S. news outlets are treating the 'transfer of power' to Iraqis as a new beginning for the country, even though the situation on the ground seems little altered, experts said." I guess some "experts" will remain "little altered" regardless of the actual situation on the ground.

And yet, there is good news coming out of Iraq, as this compilation of all the positive developments that you might have otherwise missed clearly demonstrates. I started looking out for good news from Iraq over two months ago, having gotten fed up with the unrelenting barrage of negative news coverage, which focused almost exclusively on violence, failure and dashed hopes. The good news is much underreported and not always easy to find, but clearly it's out there, and taken together with the usual Iraq coverage, it paints a much more balanced and, dare I say it, nuanced picture of a country, which is still waking up from a three decades' long nightmare and trying against many odds to become normal.

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