The Charade of Journalistic Objectivity

Most people think that journalism is a reporting of just the facts and only the facts. In fact, we were taught this in journalism school, and I have a BA in the field.

Sure, there are not many ways to report a basic crime story, or a story about the storm that just blew through. But once you get beyond the real basics like that, editorializing in the news is thoroughgoing, rampant, and impossible to eliminate.

Yet so many Americans insist that the media is simply telling them the truth. Even my liberal family. I used to tell my father that Time Magazine and the LA Times were lying at him from page 1 to the last page. Boy did that piss him off! He read both of them religiously. He relied on them for just the facts, ma’am and only the facts.

The notion that he was reading some American Pravda was really insulting and possibly frightening. If it’s all a pack of lies, why bother? He would get mad at me and pound the table, saying that was the Village Voice view of things. He really thought he was getting the liberal straight scoop.

He really thought that Time Magazine and the LA Times were liberal publications. And he let them brainwash him too. I used to point out to him how the media had brainwashed him about this or that, usually foreign policy and he would grit his teeth and raise his voice. He pulled his foreign policy straight out of Time Magazine. Those rich imperialist White Jews at Time actually taught this good liberal man how to think like a good imperialist. And he was so blind that he couldn’t even see it.

I am a gonzo journalist.

The notion that American TV, cable news, newspapers or newsmagazines is the unbiased reporting of facts is one of the biggest lies of them all. Check out Noam Chomsky. The media in capitalism operates under a propaganda system devised by the wealthy owners of the media. It’s brainwash, a system of lying designed to brainwash the population into supporting the rightwing and imperialist views of its wealthy capitalist owners.

There is little objectivity in journalism, if there has ever been. A Marxist analysis shows why this is so. The media is utilized by wealthy capitalists to promote their interests – the interest of the capitalists and the class interests of their rich owners at home, and more or less the same thing overseas (imperialism). It’s so elementary so slap yourself on the head when you figure it out. Why didn’t I think of that before?

Gonzo journalism simply recognizes this and dispenses with the facade of objectivity. It picks up the edifice and throws it across the room, shattering it against the wall, then grabs a bottle of booze and a keyboard and starts banging away.

As Hunter Thompson once said, “How can you be objective about Nixon?” You can’t. Of course you can’t. Just admit it already.

Gonzo is truth, satori for the Fourth Estate.

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12 thoughts on “The Charade of Journalistic Objectivity”

  1. So true. As well as Chomsky and Herman’s classic ‘Manufacturing Consent’, let me recommend David Cromwell and David Edwards’ ‘ Guardians of Power: the Myth of the Liberal Media’
    http://tinyurl.com/3hryngs
    They’re very influenced by Chomsky and Herman, and pay due respects. I think this is the best since Manufacturing Consent ( possibly excepting the Glasgow Media Group’s ‘ Bad News From Israel’ http://tinyurl.com/3g9jke2 ). It concentrates more on the UK media, but the BBC, the Guardian, and the Independent are now global web brands, so it’s vital reading for anyone who thinks they might be more dependable than the US media; it will leave you in no doubt how vile they really are.

    On topic, this is hilarious, if nauseating, and short (might be worth posting the original up here): ‘ You don’t have to be a complete idiot to work for the BBC but it helps’
    http://tinyurl.com/3z86cv5

  2. Coming to your site for Bigfoot news, I haven’t bothered to read any blogs as the Titles don’t appeal to me…but this one I did read and do agree. My mom a news reporter for many years….so these discussions a part of my childhood too.
    One of the biggest changes in my world view since being a witness to Bigfoots is that in fact a great deal of reporting, etc is just trash…and with the internet the number of trolling sites and reprints of poorly researched work unbelievable…..
    Now I go to Al Jezzera, BBC, India news, and American….include a smattering of watchdog websites and fact checkers it is possible to get closer to the truth…but what effort!

    1. This is part of the problem. I am always trying to figure out what I think the real truth is. But there’s so much effort involved in doing this because the MSM won’t tell me! There are still some common lines being tossed around by certain political tendencies that I am very suspicious of, but the media won’t challenge them as it agrees with them, so I stuck! I suspect I am being lied to, but I can’t prove it!

      The Net is great. Sometimes if I have a question about some political line, I will put it into Google in question form. Then it comes up with a number of possible answers to my questions. So in order to figure out if you are being lied to or not, it takes a ton of effort! Effort that most folks are just not going to go through the extreme of doing.

      This is the problem.

  3. I dont understand why it took so many years for the author to figure out the obvious. Yes, the mass main media lies, manipulaties, dissects, disfugure,twists, hides etc the news. It takes no brainer to come to that conclusion. And it is not only main streat mass media, that is in hands of those , who have money and power, in other words, globalists, modern world’s oligarchy, the very narrow club of very, very rich and famous.
    I grew up in a communist’s country, and the only mass media, ( owned by a communist government) was also lying, manipulating, censoring, hiding the news. Heavy propaganda was an everyday “adventure” ,and basicaly nobody trusted the media. Or at least majority distrusted them. It a media is in the hands of a few individuals it stops being Independent. It starts forcing certain agenda. People ,who still believe in the main stream “whorish” media are totaly ignorant, stupid ,and I do not like even talk to them because for me ,personally, they are classic idiots.

  4. “If the right people had been in charge of Nixon’s funeral, his casket would have been launched into one of those open-sewage canals that empty into the ocean just south of Los Angeles. He was a swine of a man and a jabbering dupe of a president. Nixon was so crooked that he needed servants to help him screw his pants on every morning. Even his funeral was illegal. He was queer in the deepest way. His body should have been burned in a trash bin.”

    Some people will say that words like scum and rotten are wrong for Objective Journalism–which is true, but they miss the point. It was the built-in blind spots of the Objective rules and dogma that allowed Nixon to slither into the White House in the first place. He looked so good on paper that you could almost vote for him sight unseen. He seemed so all-American, so much like Horatio Alger, that he was able to slip through the cracks of Objective Journalism. You had to get Subjective to see Nixon clearly, and the shock of recognition was often painful.”

    And yet Hunter Thompson gave him his due in this farewell.

    [url=http://www.counterpunch.org/2005/02/21/quot-he-was-a-crook-quot/]LINK[/url]

    I knew the editor of the Palm Beach Post. He was critical of Nixon’s regime. He would get phone calls threatening him and his family, and various agencies such as the IRS would show interest in him and the paper. He finally folded under the death threats and harrassment and resigned to go elsewhere. Everyone at the paper was sad to see him go under those circumstances, he was loved and admired, one of the best.
    I used to get pissed when various media outlets would allow the bastard to soak up the kreig lights again, asking him for his opinions. He wouldn’t stay dead. Someone should’ve drove a stake thru his black heart.

  5. In last Friday’s edition of the Boston Metro:

    “Scientists have found ways to convert old newspapers into biofuel. Journalists are still useless.”

  6. Dear Robert
    Andrei Gromyko once remarked that The New York Times was a balanced newspaper because half of what it publishes is true and half of what it publishes is false. Even Gromyko didn’t think that the American media is nothing but a tissue of lies. In fact, propoganda, if it is to be effective, must contain a lot of truth. We should read every newspaper and magazine in the world critically, but luckily, we don’t have to assume that they contain nothing but lies.

    Cheers. James

  7. Then again, there’s the story Chomsky likes to tell a lot of the Politburo member who, after a stay in the USA, said that he was impressed how they managed to get all their newspapers to give the same slant on things: ” … in the Soviet Union we have to break legs to achieve this!” I think it’s indeed correct that the mainstream news is half-true and half-false, but it’s the half that matters that’s false, and even if you read all the world’s press, you’ll find little deviation from the falsehood, in our globalised bankster kleptocracy.

  8. I recall a while ago Wade posted an analysis on the decline of Iran. He argued that Iran’s dwindling fortunes could be linked to the declining silk route as western imperialism shifted trade to the oceans. This is a unique and original analysis and this is the sort of commentary that the mainstream media should be engaged in. Instead, we get Islam bashing and Israel glorifying garbage on a daily basis.

    1. Instead, we get Islam bashing and Israel glorifying garbage on a daily basis.

      “Just a reminder to the predominantly Muslim-led governments in this world that here is yet another example that the United States leads the way for the creation of a predominantly Muslim country in the very heart of Europe. This should be noted by both responsible leaders of Islamic governments, such as Indonesia, and also for jihadists of all color and hue. [sic!] The United States’ principles are universal, and in this instance, the United States stands foursquare for the creation of an overwhelmingly Muslim country in the very heart of Europe.”

      Former Zionist Rep. Tom Lantos, D-Calif.

      Other than Israel which European mass media is still more on the negative side towards Israel in the Palestine/Israeli conflict the mass media is pro Islam which since the Afghan war has fully supported Islamic imperialism around the world even against secular Muslim regimes.

      Most of the prominent Islamic separatist movements have been instigated and supported by western intelligence and there allied states in the Mid East and have senior former and current government, military and intelligence officials.
      Through government funded intelligence front NGO’s like NED they finance and support there world congresses, media, websites, lobby groups, “human rights” organisations, etc.

      Islam is a weapon used by the NWO like Communism to destroy nation states that run counter to their globalist anti-Christ agenda and incorporate them into one financial and religious/ethnic empire.

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