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Ticket Replay: Really biased Gallup Poll claims most Americans don't trust their hardworking news media

December 23, 2010 |  7:48 am

A U.S. Flag Flying proudly

During the holiday season, as in years past, The Ticket is republishing some of our favorite items from the previous political year. This story was originally published on Sept. 29, 2010:

According to that fringe polling outfit named Gallup, a record 57% of Americans profess little or no trust in this country's mass media to report the news fairly and accurately.Democrat president Barack Obama stuffing his face with a cheesesteak

What a crock!

They could have put it another way: An amazing more than four out of 10 Americans (43%) may perhaps believe most everything they read in the news or see on television.

But no, Gallup has to go for the sensational, to feed this crazy belief among a few hundred million Americans that the media is somehow biased in its presentation of the people and happenings that go on all over this crazy place.

According to Gallup, this tiny 57% fraction of Americans is a "record high" in distrust by one lousy percentage point.Hardworking Republican mom Sarah Palin smiles at supporters

Gimme a break! Like anyone is gonna believe that some cockamamie poll of only 1,019 adult Americans out of -- what? -- 310,365,503 Americans is conceivably representative of this entire diverse -- and might we add, wonderful -- country.

Look closer. Aha! Hidden in the poll's same-sized print way at the bottom, even Gallup admits its survey has a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.

 Yes, OK, that also means that perhaps 61% of Americans may, in fact, distrust the media. But it also could mean that as few as 53% distrust the media.

Which would be down a whole stunning 3% from last year's 56% mistrust figure.

According to Gallup's findings, nearly half of the country (48%) is convinced that the....

...news media is too liberal, while only 15% dare to say the media is too conservative. According to this same poll, one-third of Americans think the media is just about right -- meaning not really right-right, but about-right, like Goldilocks' porridge.

Apparently, many Americans strongly suspect that a human bias creeps into media coverage, slanting the news in a favorable way toward people or causes that its biased members secretly appreciate.Democrat vice president Joe Biden talking again

And, additionally, that these same humanly-biased news media members portray people and causes that they don't favor in a, well, unfavorable light.

Ridiculous! That would mean that news media members are human, possessing the same biases as the bias-spotting humans among their consumers. How likely is that?

Anyway, if that was the case, then these evil-doing media types would focus superficially on the hair or pantsuits or clothing costs of female political candidates without noting the hair plugs, boring blue everyday neckties or missing lapel pins of male opponents.

If the media was really biased, it would ask, say, a meaningless trick geography question of one candidate, while interrogating another on how he handles such a busy travel schedule and still manages to look so good and be a great dad.

It would seize on some goofy thing like a "mis-spilled" word or an out-of-context statement about inventing the Internet or seeing Russia from an impossible distance.

And it would repeat the goofy statement again and again and again and again. Until it became an intimate part of national family life, like one of those tired jokes that everyone's father has told 1,872 times.America's greatest president and the first Republican chief executive Abraham Lincoln

If the media was biased, it would publish unflattering photos of one party's members. And include appealing or evocative historic pictures of admirable figures from the other side, smiling or hugging excited supporters.

As if there's any difference between the two, Gallup reports, "Democrats and liberals remain far more likely than other political and ideological groups to trust the media and to perceive no bias."

Interestingly, the same belief in the media's credibility holds true for lower-income Americans and those with less education, the poll finds.

While the more affluent and better-educated citizens tend to perceive more bias in the media, as if being well-educated counted for anything in perspicacity.

But on the other hand, if this Gallup garbage about distrusting the biased media had any validity at all, would anyone have read this far?

-- Andrew Malcolm

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Photos: CBS; Getty Images (Palin and Biden); Lincoln Memorial.

 

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