More evidence of misleading bias on TV

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by Abbey Normal, Jan 15, 2006.

  1. Abbey Normal
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    Abbey Normal Senior Member

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    I happened to catch Donna Brazile (Chair of the Democratic National Committee's Voting Rights Institute) on CBS this morning, stating that a "vast majority of Americans" support abortion. This did not sound even close to being correct to me, but since no one challenged the statement, I looked up a poll on the subject. Here is what I found:

    Gallup/CNN/USA Today polls:A series of polls were taken of American adults during May, June and November, 2005. 2 They seem to show a significant shift in the pro-choice direction: First, they asked the question: "Do you think abortions should be legal under any circumstances, legal only under certain circumstances, or illegal in all circumstances?" Results were:

    Response: 2005-MAY 2005-JUN 2005-NOV
    Legal under any circumstances 23% 24% 26%
    Legal under most circumstances 12% 15% 16%
    Legal only under a few circumstances 40% 40% 39%
    Illegal in all circumstances 22% 20% 16%
    No opinion/no response 3% 1% 3%

    In their 2005-NOV poll they asked the additional question: "Next, do you favor or oppose each of the following proposals:"

    Question: Favor Oppose
    A law requiring women under 18 to get parental consent for any abortion
    For: 69% Against 28%
    A law requiring that the husband of a married woman be notified if she decides to have an abortion
    For: 64% Against: 34%
    A constitutional amendment to ban abortion in all circumstances, except when necessary to save the life of the mother
    For: 37% Against: 61%

    Does any of this look to you like there is a "vast majority" in favor of abortion on demand? Note that only 52% favor abortion in all or most circumstances; the rest who do favor it want it in only "a few circumstances" which usually means life of mom, rape or incest. The proponents of abortion on demand are far from a vast majority; more like a slim one. The number of people who want the right to abortion without consent, and without restriction, is very low, in the low to mid 20% range.

    Particularly telling are the stats on getting parental and spousal consent. Also note that the question about a Constitutional ban conveniently leaves out rape and incest as exceptions to the a ban.

    Other polls I looked at did not even have a separate category for "legal only under a few circumstances", as this Gallup/CNN/USA Today poll did. The result is that people who favor abortion only if to save the life of the mother, or in cases of rape/incest, get lumped into the general "favoring abortion" category with those who favor abortion on demand, with no cosnent requirements, up to and including partial birth abortions. That is misleading at best.

    Btw, George Will raised the point that if Roe is overturned, abortion becomes a state legislative issue, so why all the terror over Roe. There was no clear rebuttal to his point.

    The MSM continue to allow unsubstantiated, unclarified, and unchallenged comments like this "vast majority" one, and except in those rare "Rathergate" instances, the public will continue to be misled and lied to.
     
  2. Annie
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    Annie Diamond Member

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    I bolded the last one asked, like you I think if they had added 'or in the case of rape/incest' the 37% would have jumped to the 60's, easily.
     
  3. jAZ
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    jAZ Member

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    The below are your words and your desription of her statements, not mine. Just starting out by being very clear here.
    Sounds like political speak to me... overly broad words that allow you to make a narrow point sound more all-encompassing. Technically true, but not precisely reflective of the details used to draw such a conclusion. Given that it came from a politician/strategist... It should be no suprise. However, it is technically accurate as your numbers show.
    Only 16-22% support a total ban on abortion according to your numbers. That means that 78-84% "support abortion" (in some form). Note that there is no qualifiying words to either narrow or broaden the phrase. Just "support abortion". That means whatever the reader wants it to mean. Bush and his defenders are world class experts at using this sort of non-specific double speak as are Dems and many/most politicians. Deliberate dupiclity is king in our current political world.
    How you think that this is a "bias" of some kind is mystery to me. The modern media is filled with ill-informed, lazy, talking heads. They aren't experts... and they aren't interested in the "truth" or even promoting any agenda other than the ratings and profit agenda.

    Whatever drives viewers, ratings and ad revenue in both the short term (sensationalism) and the long term (without damaging credibility).

    The media is as worthless as it's ever been, but it has everything to do with a lack of editorial resources and investigative journalism (both disappered as cost cutting moves by the corporatized media).

    I can give you 1000 examples of the same MSM letting Republican/Conservative pundits get away with misleading statements... many of which aren't even "technically true", but entirely false.
     
  4. Nienna
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    Nienna Senior Member

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    Even so, I thought, WOW! 37% of Americans would favor an actual constitutional amendment to ban abortion in all circumstances except to save the life of the mother! That is over a third of the people polled! That's a pretty large chunk to be considered a "fringe group."
     
  5. Annie
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    Annie Diamond Member

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    Do it. Thank you!
     
  6. Abbey Normal
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    Abbey Normal Senior Member

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    The poll clearly shows that if anything, a majority support restrictions on abortion, something which judicial interpretation of Roe has found unconstitutional time and time again.

    55% want either no legal abortions, or only a few circumstances in which abortion should be legal.

    And a whopping 82% want at least some restrictions, a situation which is untenable to the most libs.

    Legal under most circumstances 12% 15% 16%
    Legal only under a few circumstances 40% 40% 39%
    Illegal in all circumstances 22% 20% 16%
    GRAND TOTAL: 82%

    When a political commentator says the vast majority support abortion, in the context of a Roe v. Wade/ Supreme Court/Judge Alito discussion, it is in fact intended to communicate, and does communicate, that arguably at least 75% (a conservative estimate of what a vast majority would be) or more Americans support a Constitutional right to an abortion on demand. Without restrictions. To characterize Brazile's phrase any other way after the fact, is an attempt to neutralize her words in order to clear them of the bias they represent.
     
  7. jAZ
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    jAZ Member

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    If you really want 1000 examples I'll give you the tools to find them... I will get you started with plenty of examples.

    Summary: The Washington Post used false and misleading comparisons to report that, during his recent Supreme Court nomination hearings, Samuel A. Alito Jr. "did not embrace some of the most controversial legal views" of conservative Supreme Court justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas.
    -=-=-
    Summary: MSNBC host Chris Matthews asked "[D]on't you have to be a real ideologue, a real partisan to believe that one party's more crooked than the other?"
    -=-=-
    Media continues to spin Bush domestic spying operation

    While most media figures haven't been quite as brazen in downplaying the Bush administration's apparently illegal domestic spying operation as Matthews has, misinformation about the program continues to run rampant.

    Several news organizations, for example, reported Bush's January 11 assertion that he acted legally in authorizing the program -- without noting the program's legality is very much in dispute and, in fact, the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service and a former National Security Agency general counsel have both questioned Bush's legal defense of the wiretapping.

    -=-=-
    Summary: On ABC's World News Tonight, George Stephanopoulos cropped a clip from Supreme Court nominee Judge Samuel A. Alito's nomination hearing to suggest Alito had "backed away from past statements suggesting a supremely powerful president." But contrary to Stephanopoulos's assertion, the entirety of Alito's response illustrated that he has not, in fact, "backed away" from earlier views on executive power.
    -=-=-
    Media Matters is a media watchdog website with a liberal view. They don't report the media failures that hurt the conservative cause... they only focus on ones that hurt the liberal cause. But aside from that particular imbalance, they do a fantastic job of reporting these failures though comprehensive quotes, cited facts, linked articles, video clips, etc.

    It's a great resource for seeing 1/2 of the failure of the media. Specifically the "other" half that you aren't watching for I suspect.

    I'd suggest visiting here for the other 996.
    http://mediamatters.org/
     
  8. Annie
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    Annie Diamond Member

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    Sorry, that is NOT what you posted. BTW, I hardly need your help in searching.
     
  9. Abbey Normal
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    Abbey Normal Senior Member

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    Lol! You of all people don't need research instruction.

    :rotflmao:
     
  10. jAZ
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    jAZ Member

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    It shows many things. Your attempt to say it doesn't show one thing (vast majority support for some form of legalized abortion... which it does), and to then say that it only shows a different thing (majority support for some restrictions on abortion... which is also does, but not exclusively) is a sham.

    Poll results like this show lots of things like this.

    One important thing it shows is that the devil is in the details and that one absolute ideological viewpoint isn't representative of people's views in general. People want a middle ground.

    Modern politics seems to be about whitewashing the details and forcing people into an all-or-nothing choice between 2 sets of absolute ideological extremes.

    That doesn't help us move forward at all. It just helps retain power for whoever happens to be in power at the time.
     

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