On Bias

UPDATE: some statistics on this from Investor’s Business Daily.

What would you think if you were reading a new research result, written by people who all had advanced academic degrees in the relevant fields, that claimed that smoking cigarettes had no correlation with cancer?

You would almost certainly discount that report, given all the other information you have acquired about smoking’s effects.

Now what if you also learned that the new report was written by a group funded by R J Reynolds, the large tobacco company? Further, it comes out that nearly all of the people who contributed to the report smoked. Now what would you think?

Obviously, you would not only discount whatever you heard from the group, but you would be suspicious that whatever they told you was the exact opposite of the truth. Right?

UPDATE: Something happened to the original, which is still linked below (the second one). But somebody else has posted the same video, at another link. Thanks to John for the heads up..

Too embarrassed to stand up“? Good grief!


  1. Mike

    Oh c’mon now. I’ll bet a similar case can be made for the coverage of Hillary (who was pronounced the nominee long before the contest even began) and that of McCain.

    If the coverage of the election process really bothers you, you are always welcome to evaluate a candidate based on their voting record and positions, vote accordingly, and ignore the media. Works for me.

  2. Briggs

    Mike, I’d almost agree with you—truly ignoring the media can be a useful strategy—-but, with analogy with the tobacco company-sponsored report, believing the opposite of what the media says can be useful, too.

  3. joy

    Mike: Your comment is quite typical of the reaction to be expected from such biased media coverage. I live in England and anyone would think from the coverage over here that he’s already won! We get movie stars and “lovies” finding it necessary to tell us who they are going to vote for. Is this to catch the American voters who’re on holiday or living over here? In England, usually, famous people would find it distasteful to speak about who the’re going to vote for. Like it’s just not cricket. The ones who do are rare and would be speaking out whatever the topic was. In fact over here the parties are allowed only the same amount of air time and there would be complaints to OFCOM if news readers, camera men, actresses,tea ladies, weather men, and uncle Tom Cobley started pitching in about which party they were going to vote for. It’s another example of modern media using their position of privilege to push their own interests. I think Hollywood’s taking over. such conceit will not do.

  4. bill-tb

    A Marxist is a Marxist, even if he is black. The drive by media would love for America to embrace Marxism.

  5. Alan D. McIntire

    Having a choice between the UK, where candidates
    are all allotted an equal amount of air time,
    and America, which is comparatively unregluated,
    I’ ll put up with the media bias rather than the
    fascistic “TV Police”, which we Americans would consider to be a direct attack on the first amendment

    but we have to put up with the fascist “TV police”,


    – A. McIntire

  6. GeorgeR

    When I see the media fawning all over a candidate, I vote the other way.

  7. joy

    And so you have the overt media pressure on the public to vote on the given winner by default. That’s not democratic.

  8. John Andrews

    Somehow the video is no longer available. I somehow do not believe that the servers were bonked by this blog.

    John Andrews, Knoxville, Tennessee, USA

  9. Joy

    neither video link is working now.

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