This is to say, not reality at all.
What is the first step in the main stream media’s handbook of liberal bias? Why, alter the headline to fit your agenda, of course.
In textbook MSM form, liberal news outlets have been altering the planned Tuesday announcement by President Bush that 8,000 troops in Iraq will be home by February.
Allow me to demonstrate…
Step one of the plan for bias is to wait for a perfectly positive piece of news. The White House released the text of Bush’s speech on Monday. Agence France-Presse (AFP) took the plunge in reporting with this headline:
Bush: 8,000 US troops to leave Iraq
Good news to most Americans, as any troops returning home after a victorious run in the War on Terror is a good thing. In fact, you’d think this would be ideal news for liberals who want an immediate withdrawal of all troops. You’d think they’d be happy at the announcement of any troops returning home.
But, you’d think wrong. After all, this is an announcement by the most reviled President in MSM history. Any news that might put the President in a positive light must be altered. Thus, we have step two in the MSM plan for bias – Alter the headline to cast a negative shadow on George Bush. This step coincides directly with the medical terminology known as Bush Derangement Syndrome (BDS).
Step two of the plan was deftly executed by several media sources.
MSNBC continued their strong tradition of liberal bias by providing their viewers with this headline:
Bush to keep troop levels in Iraq for '08
Now, for those aspiring liberal journalists out there, see how easy that was? One simple word can do the trick, changing positive news to negative news in one fell swoop. The AFP headline, which included the word ‘leave’ was simply too positive. So, MSNBC throws in the word ‘keep’ to make it a negative action, by a negative President of course.
But our friends at MSNBC weren’t content to stop there. They later altered the news headline on the home page to read:
Troops won't return on Bush's watch
This allows for negativity, while simultaneously making sure that the viewer is hit with another realization that the positive won’t occur until one month AB (After Bush). Very effective, and so true to bias form.
The Times Online took it a step further, dropping proper condensed headline form by creating this bit of rambling incoherence:
President Bush to maintain US troops in Iraq until almost last day in office
Why not just go all out ladies and gentleman? Come strong with your bias, or don’t come at all. Perhaps this would have been an improvement?
President Bush to keep troops in Iraq until several years after the War on Terrorism campaign officially started
Because THAT would just be too ridiculous, right?
The AP’s headline refused to allow even a hint of good feelings about a troop drawdown, completely ignoring the facts as only the AP can do. Their headline read:
Bush keeping Iraq troop levels mostly steady
Talk about your glass half empty!
The BBC followed closely to the AP format:
Bush to announce troop reshuffle
The Washington Post continued the trend:
Bush to Keep Iraq Troop Levels Steady Until After He Leaves Office
Keep this in mind – these are only the headlines. The plan for bias calls for several executed steps by the media beyond the headlines.
If the MSM can alter reality in their headlines, imagine what they’ve been doing in the main content.
I suspect that the bias won’t stop here. One could only be partially surprised if they were to wake up tomorrow morning to this:
Bush to Personally Allow the Possibility of Death to 8,000 US Troops Until February
Seriously, would anyone be shocked?
*** UPDATE: And the hits just keep on coming...
The Wall Street Journal takes a different angle:
Bush to Shift Troops to Afghanistan From Iraq
Haven't the libs been whining that our focus has been shifted too much onto Iraq, whilst Afghanistan has been all but forgotten? Now we're going to use this as a point of contention to denegrate the President's announcement of troop withdrawals in Iraq? You can't have your liberal cake and eat it too.
The Financial Times, frighteningly enough, struggled with some basic mathematical concepts and accompanied them with a little journalistic license to arrive at this headline:
Bush to withdraw 4,000 Iraq troops
USA Today opted to make sure you knew the year of withdrawal:
AP: Bush won't reduce Iraq forces until early '09
This helps the MSM cause by highlighting the contrast in time, almost creating the illusion that the reduction is a full year off.
Bush will shift some forces from Iraq to Afghanistan
Why would they think that the work of journalist James Gerstenzang, a man who is openly counting down the days until this terrible President leaves office, as a reliable source for accurate news? This is shameful, even for the left-leaning Chronicle.
The point is clear. A headline is a useful tool in the MSM's biased agenda, and can immediately create a spin that will guide the reader to their political point of view.
I welcome any more submissions from our readers that outline this example of media bias, and am certain that there will be even more absurd examples found in the media by tomorrow.