Conservative and right-leaning think tanks continue to get more mainstream media attention than centerist and progressive groups according to a new report by Fairness & Accuracy in Reporting. "The overall percentages for the year were consistent with findings for previous years, with conservative or right-leaning think tanks garnering 48 percent of the citations, centrists receiving 36 percent and progressive or left-leaning think tanks receiving 16 percent," FAIR writes.
"A powerful group of neo-conservatives is launching a new public relations campaign in support of President George W. Bush's war on terrorism," AlterNet's Jim Lobe writes. The group of well connected Republicans is calling itself Americans for Victory Over Terrorism (AVOT).
In a new report, Defenders of Wildlife and the Natural Resources Defense Council examine the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). "While ALEC purports to be a 'good-government' group operating in the public interest, its sole mission is to advance special-interest legislation across the nation on behalf of its corporate sponsors and funders," the report says. "The organization's behind-the-scenes advocacy has been surprisingly effective -- leading, according to ALEC material, to the enactment of more than 450 state laws during the 1999 and 2000 state legislative sessions.
"Proving that irony is alive and well post-Sept. 11," observe Steve Rendall and Peter Hart, "a book deriding the national press corps for its flagrant liberal bias has been the subject of enormous attention in the same mainstream media that, the book argues, suppress conservative views." In their critical review of Bernard Goldberg's book, Bias, they note that "right-wing media watchdogs ...
Gary Polland, who heads the "well-connected" Houston-based firm Polland & Cook and chairs the Harris County Republican Party, has been smoothing out some of the "knotty issues" facing Pakistan since even before September 11th.
"So how come media objectivity is suddenly a bad thing?" asks columnist Michael Kinsley. "Conservative press critics are in another tizzy about objectivity and balance in American journalism. Only this time, their complaint isn't the lack of these fine qualities but that there's way too much of the stuff. ... The traditional conservative media critique is that journalists bend the news in a liberal direction because they're liberals.
A New York Times story headlined "Network Coverage a Target Of Fire From Conservatives" reports that the far-right Media Research Center (MRC) is successfully attacking news media coverage of the war, especially ABC TV, for lack of patriotism. MRC is a powerful tax-exempt PR and lobby operation begun in 1987 by L.
As might be expected, last week's terrorist bombings have energized some of the most extremist and intolerant segments of American society.
The belated discovery that George W. Bush's campaign applied two disparate standards for counting overseas ballots in Florida -- liberal for Bush strongholds and stringent for counties carried by Al Gore -- underscores again the huge advantage that the well-funded conservative news media gives the Republicans. "By having a powerful media of its own -- from TV networks to nationwide talk radio, from news magazines to daily newspapers -- the conservative movement can give its stamp to events during the crucial few days when the public is paying attention," writes Robert Parry.
A new book by conservative spinmeisters purports to correct the mainstream media's liberal spin on science news. It Ain't Necessarily So: How Media Make and Unmake the Scientific Picture of Reality, by authors David Murray, Joel Schwartz and S. Robert Lichter, argues that the mainstream media's science coverage is slanted by a liberal agenda.