Filling in for Mark Levin on his national radio talk show on Thursday, Houston radio host Michael Berry picked up on MRC’s recently-released “Media Bias 101” report detailing dozens of polls since 1981 showing journalists liberal attitudes and strongly pro-Democratic voting record. “I'm sitting on a great study done by the Media Research Center, Media Bias 101,” Berry enthused. “It's one of the best reports I've ever seen.” [audio excerpt here]
Berry was making the point that new media technologies such as Facebook lets citizens inform each other and mobilize to affect public policy without being dependent on a relatively few unrepresentative journalists: “The ability for people to communicate and to interact in the way that Facebook allows is an absolute game changer....People that can’t get hired at big newspapers or big TV stations [are now] changing public policy in profound ways.”
Here’s some of what Berry had to say near the beginning of the first hour of the March 4 Mark Levin Show (Levin was off that night getting ready for his Friday night speech at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in California.)
If you think about political discussions among societies -- you can go back to the founding of the United States, or you can go before that. I'm a student of the history of the American Revolution, the early days, and you look at Ben Franklin and the printing press and the power he had as a publisher, as a printer, as a "leather-apron man," as he called it. And you think about the importance of the newspaper, and you think about the influence of the newspaper, and particularly of those who wrote it, those few who wrote it. They controlled the message. They controlled so much in American life. They influenced so much in American life.
And if you think of the William Randolph Hearsts, if you think of the Horace Greeleys, and if you think of the influential members of early American society, all the way up until the age of the electronic media, the television, and that began to shift it. And there the Edward R. Murrows, and there the Walter Cronkites, and to a lesser extent in a later day, the Dan Rathers. And the influence they had, some of it terrible.
You think about the fact that the average American, the average American on whom governmental policies would be thrust, had so little influence over the medium, so little influence, so little input in the process. And it's only been -- there's a great piece in the Wall Street Journal today about Facebook as a business, and how they started in '04, '05, and this, this, this guy [Mark] Zuckerberg being a student at Harvard and, you know, being a geek who just wanted a way, you know, to interact there and find more girls.
And out of that has developed what I originally described as a very silly process, but I have come to understand the content might often be silly, but the platform is important. The ability for people to communicate and to interact in the way that Facebook allows is an absolute game changer on a level so profound we couldn't have imagined it twenty years ago. Even an e-mail is a one-way street. Even an e-mail requires such a cumbersome process to communicate.
The reason the daily newspaper is dying is we don't need some pointy-headed, bow-tie wearing, seersucker-suit editor that's against the death penalty and for abortion, that's for every liberal -- I'm sitting on a great study done by the Media Research Center, Media Bias 101 from 1981, and I reviewed this today. It's one of the best reports I've ever seen showing the inherent bias in the media, the type of people that enter particularly the print media, and how biased they are.
And if you imagine that in only the last few years the process has changed so dramatically that every single American has the ability not just to participate in the process beyond the election, the voting franchise, but has the ability to change public policy. People that can't get hired at big newspapers or big TV stations, changing public policy in profound ways.