Comment Of The Day: “Nah, There’s No Mainstream Media Bias! But Why Is Fox Almost The Only News Source Reporting This Story?”

This is kind of an anti-ethical ethics comment by Steve-O-in NJ, but a useful one. Taking off from the juvenile “mean girls” criticism the First Lady gets from the news media regarding whatever she does, says or wears (while anything worn by the previous First Lady, no matter how hideous, was inevitably praised as a fashion coup), Steve lists other examples of “middle school values,” which are all things kids do, say and think before their ethics alarms are operational.  I’ve numbered them for reference purposes. There are sixteen in all. Most of them, though not all, are rendered moot by even a rudimentary understanding of the Golden Rule. Ethics barely peaks is head out in #13. Barely.

Here is Steve-O-in NJ‘s Comment Of The Day on the post, “Nah, There’s No Mainstream Media Bias! But Why Is Fox Almost The Only News Source Reporting This Story?”:

They also busted shoes, no pun intended about her wearing sneakers when accompanying the President to the areas affected by the hurricane in 2017.

It’s a middle school value, that something that is cool when it is done by something one you like, is unforgivable when it is done by someone you don’t like.

Other values:

1. Your value is determined by your size, strength, and skill at sports (if male) or your appearance (if female).

2. Any skill that does not fall within those areas is worthless and a target for abuse.

3. If you have your eye on a girl, she belongs to you, as long as you can keep others away by force.

4. A snarky answer is always better than a straight one.

5. Sarcasm is better than serious discussion, and a snappy comeback is worth more than facts.

6. If someone is different, then it is all right, even required, to make fun of him.

7. If you don’t like someone, you don’t avoid him or stay away from him, you pursue him and make his life as miserable as you can.

8. People’s buttons are there to be pushed. If someone lets you know he doesn’t like something, that’s your cue to work him on that as hard and as often as you can.

9. It’s perfectly all right to play mean pranks on someone you don’t like, and there’s no limit to how far they can go.

10. If someone you don’t like has an embarrassing or hurtful secret and you should find it out, it’s perfectly all right to spread it all over the place, so everyone knows it.

11. Any argument can be taken to the level of a fistfight, even stupid stuff like whether the Islanders or the Rangers are the better hockey team, if someone says the wrong thing or says it the wrong way.

12. If someone disrespects you, you are within your rights to assault him and attempt to injure or kill him. This is usually signaled by a shove to the chest.

13. The preferred method of fighting is usually punches directed to the facial area. Dirty tactics such as a strike to the groin or the eyes are frowned on, and cause to inflict permanent or painful injury.

14. If someone loses a fight, make certain everyone else knows it.

15. No one is allowed to involve an adult in a dispute. If you do, then that is grounds for a severe beating.

16. Every gym class is an opportunity to give somebody you don’t like a wedgie, and you shouldn’t pass up a perfectly good opportunity.

27 thoughts on “Comment Of The Day: “Nah, There’s No Mainstream Media Bias! But Why Is Fox Almost The Only News Source Reporting This Story?”

  1. Well, often times the mean girls and guys get their comeuppance.

    I’m extremely tired to the point of exhaustion by the constant “Trump is terrible and he’s made everything terrible” snark that’s casually inserted in correspondence or Facebook posts or even tossed into news stories or editorials. Do the cool kids really think they’re going to convince anyone to vote for Joe and The Harridan by mocking the Trump administration? People that were angry enough to vote for Trump in 2016 are going to change their minds and vote for Dr. Demento and The Harridan? But what about people that didn’t even vote for Trump in 2016 (like the undersigned) who are assumed to have voted for him because they’re not in a constant state of apoplectic outrage about his very existence? They are supposed be enthused about Biden and The Harridan because Trump’s been under constant attack for over four years? That’s going to generate Democratic voters? Hell no. Their incessant, impudent, spoiled brat hissy fit has simply alienated anyone not in their camp. I hope Biden and The Harridan make George McGovern look like a super nova of Presidential electoral history. All the mean kid idiots on Facebook and in the media and on the left can then shut up, even if just for a minute or two.

    A question: Why are the polls right this year when they were completely wrong in 2016? And even in these suspect polls, aren’t the polls mostly within their margin for error?

    • Nate Silver is the only pundit that is worth tracking. He gave Trump a 33% chance of winning in 2016, and currently has Trump at 24%. Both numbers seem accurate to me given the environment we live in today.

      • So Bobby, the best guy was wildly wrong in 2016 but he’s right in 2020? What chance did he give Hillary in 2016 and what chance is he giving Biden now?

        • Do you not understand how probability works, OB? Silver’s forecast was the most favorable one for Trump out of all the mainstream publications. I remember many mocking him for his call.

          If I recall correctly, the NYT had Trump at 1%.

          • Again, Silver was closer than the NYT? So what? 33% means a one in three chance of winning, right? 24% means roughly a one in four chance of winning, right? 1% means a one in a hundred chance of winning, right? But he won. None of these were favorable odds.

            • Odds need not be favorable to be accurate. Let’s agree to disagree since there is no way to replicate the 2016 election. I will stand by Silver based on his history of evidence-based analysis.

              • Why is there “no way to replicate the 2016 election.” Such replication (egregiously bad polling) may be happening right before our eyes as we speak. For the very same reasons as in 2016. Cheers!

                So, Silver is saying Trump will win? 24 and 33 aren’t that far apart.

                • You’re confusing replication and causation.

                  You also seem to intrepret probability as a virtual guarantee when it isn’t warranted.

              • I really think you give Silver too much credit. He doesn’t do analysis, he averages disparate polls that use disparate methodology. That’s a way to avoid taking a real position, and to minimize accountability. Let’s say the Rasmussen poll is the most accurate, which I suspect it is. Silver just throws it into the mix with other polls, like the really dishonest ABC poll showing a Biden wipeout using a slanted sample. How is that analysis?, It’s using big numbers to justify conclusions that aren’t there.

                It reminds me of Bill James’ pitcher and batter projections. Every pitcher seems to be projected to go 12-10; almost every batter will hit .278. with 72 rbi. That’s how you minimize being called on a bad prediction…bet on the average.

                Silver is foolish to take any poll that doesn’t have the race nearly tied as valid. The 2016 experience is a factor to consider—so is Trump’s incumbency, Biden’s senility, and the fact that while Trump’s supporters largely have enthusiasm for his candidacy to go with genuine loathing of what the Democrats have come to stand for, the anti-Trump vote is based on pure hate alone. And, of course, it is nuts to give any odds six weeks out. Silver behaves like part of the “resistance” media, and if it quacks like a duck…

                Meanwhile, this guy assumes the polls are accurate, and still says…

                • Silver weighs each poll accordingly given their history of reliability. Furthermore, Trump’s win probability takes into account how far we are into the election season. It will change (likely for the worse) as we come closer to election day. Lastly, I consider it a good thing that he disregards narratives in favor of the data. The big emphasis on narratives was one of the reasons Trump’s victory was such a shocker. However, it’s also one of the reasons Obama’s 2012 re-election was also a surprising blowout.

                  • You actually think MORE public attention on Joe will help his chances? The opposite is almost certainly true. Why did the Democratic convention get no “bounce” all, while Trump did get a boost from the GOP show? Biden looks and sounds old and sick, and there’s no hiding it.

                    The campaign has barely started: you can say that Silver takes all these factors into consideration, but his “odds” suggest otherwise, as does common sense. I figured out that Trump was close to an upset in 2016; why didn’t Nate’s “model”? Because he’s a progressive true believer, and it gets in the way of his judgment.

                    I don’t know what you mean about 2012. Romney blew it because he let Obama lie to his face (with cover from Candy Crowley), because Obama’s IRS illegally hamstrung conservative groups, and mostly because the news media advanced Democratic “narratives” to smear Romney and conservatives stayed home because he wasn’t “one of them.”

                    • Silver gives Trump 24% with the assumption that something beneficial may happen to Trump in the meantime. Otherwise, were the election held today, his formula tells him that Trump’s win probability would be much lower. Biden’s gaffes and issues with corruption appear to be well known; the polls show that the public doesn’t seem to care all that much about it.

                      What win probability did you give Trump in 2016? Could your critique of Silver be applied to yourself?

                      And if conservatives stayed home because Romney wasn’t “one of them,” then how did Trump get a better turnout?

                    • His support was bi-partisan. Trump wasn’t a true conservative; he’s non-ideological. And he was running against a terrible, dislikable, corrupt candidate.

                      I don’t attach numbers to non-numerical reality. 24% is obviously meaningless: the future is chaos, which is by definition beyond prediction. Every time I see Biden he looks and sounds worse. If Silver thinks that Americans can get excited about voting for someone in that kind of shape, he’s ignorant of our history and culture.

                      I’m amazed that you, or anyone, would take his artificial precision seriously. No, I don’t engage in that kind of analysis.

        • He isn’t. I refuse to believe the pollsters did absolutely nothing to correct their methodology since the debacle of 2016. He isn’t in as bad a shape as the polls have him, but there’s a lot at stake in the upcoming debate, and he’d better not just win, but show Biden up for the senile fool he is. In the meantime Bob Woodward is saying he’s become unmoored from reality.

          • 1. They can’t adjust their own bias, however, and that’s fatal. They know that to get publicity they have to appeal to the MSM narrative.
            2. They can’t adjust for foxholing by Trump supporters, who have spent four years being bullied and abused on social media and elsewhere.
            3. The polling that puts Trump behind makes no sense. If, as has been reported, he has increased his support from Hispanics and blacks, he can’t lose.
            4. Silver is a Democratic booster himself, and a slave to the polls average methodology. If Rasmussen is right, then using the other polls just dilutes the impact of the one correct methodology.
            5. Presidents are usually reelected if they run. It takes a strong ticket to change that. The Democrats have a weaker ticket than last time.
            6. It is the Democrats right now who are acting panicked. There’s a reason. I think internal polls are showing different trends than what the MSM is reporting.
            7. Who cares what Bob Woodward says, especially when he’s trying to sell a book?

            • “four years being bullied and abused on social media and elsewhere”

              Eg., that would be the undersigned. Elsewhere would include my neighborhood and even among the younger members of my family. And I voted for HRC in 2016. There are no Democrats in foxholes.

  2. When I read Steve’s comment I thought he was reading my mind. I have long associated the behaviors of the media with junior high school kids.

    Ten years ago most of these media figures would be champing at the bit to be invited to a Trump soirre’. But he threatens their power so he must knocked down no matter how insignificant the complaint.

    The media hate him because they had little to do with his appeal to voters. That means they cannot control him or destroy him at will.

    On an unrelated note the PA supreme court just ruled that the Green Party candidate failed to follow the strict rules established by the legislature so the candidate cannot be on the ballot. They then changed the rules for when ballots must be received and allow three days past the due date. The governor has issued an edict that all ballots must be counted even if the signatures do not match. Let the games begin.

  3. Has anyone else heard about povadine iodine nasal rinse that inactivates covid-19 aka SARS COV-2 in 15 seconds.

    JAMA just published this and reports it will begin phase 4 in October but a limited study concluded in May of 2020.
    If I recall correctly the idea of using a disinfectant internally was ridiculed by the press.

    My question is why, given that health care workers have been using an FDA approved povidine-iodine nasal rinse called Halodine to prevent SARS2 Covid infections for a some time, why has this not been a go to solution among health care workers and the general public.

  4. Here’s the study, Chris:

    Also offered to inpatients of more than 7 days. Are you ready to volunteer?

    “PVP-I nasal spray and gargle (10% diluted 1:30) will be used prior to the start of a shift, during “lunch break”, and at the end of shift. First, the nasal spray will be sprayed in the nose (2 sprays each naris). For adequate coverage, the participant should be able to taste the iodine or see it in the back of the throat. This should be left in place for 30 seconds. Then, the participant will gargle the solution for 30 seconds and not have anything to eat or drink by mouth for 30 minutes. Treatment will continue for 3 weeks, or until the healthcare worker presents with COVID symptoms. Participants will then be tested for COVID positivity and asked to fill out a second questionnaire assessing study tolerability. At completion of the study, they will be asked to turn in their calendar card to assess how many applications they were able to complete.”

  5. p.s. Chris et al; Any interventions have to be evidence-based. This one was promoted to the public — a stupid and dangerous thing for anyone to do. — by a doctor very popular in the Redding, CA area. People are headed for their local drugstore to try it out.

    Here’s a second opinion (that nobody’s listening to:
    Shasta County Deputy Health Officer, Dr. Michael Vovakes, says,

    “I’m just not sure how the general public would use something like that. We have trouble with getting people to even wear a mask, and you have to spray this in your nose enough that you can taste it in the back of your throat multiple times a day, and then gargle with it,” said Dr. Vovakes. “I’m just not sure how useful this would be for the general public. I can kind of see for health care workers who are around people all the time if they really wanted to protect themselves a little bit more even though it’s inconvenient to do something like this.”

    [FOR INSTANCE: The solution may NOT be used by anyone with a thyroid condition, in other words, mainly people over 50, and here’s the data on that: The radioactive iodine uptake (RAIU) test to check for thyroid gland problems uses a radioactive iodine tracer and a special probe to measure how much tracer the thyroid gland absorbs from the blood.

    More than 12 percent of the U.S. population will develop a thyroid condition during their lifetime. An estimated 20 million Americans have some form of thyroid disease. Up to 60 percent of those with thyroid disease are unaware of their condition For these people to use such a spray up their nose would cause severe iodine toxicity.

    Exposure to mixtures that contain iodine can cause some of the following reactions: itchy rash (comes on slowly like contact dermatitis) hives, and anaphylaxis,(a sudden allergic reaction that can cause\ swelling of your tongue and throat and shortness of breath. … I have had a slight reaction myself and seen a patient suffering from the tracer … it appears strangely like those that describe the coronavirus, by the way.

  6. Penn
    Thanks for the quality information. Part of that was discussed in the overview of the JAMA study I looked up and read after reading a news story. I would consider JAMA a legitimate arbiter. The overview I read did not include the methodology.

    Penn: “Any interventions have to be evidence-based. This one was promoted to the public — a stupid and dangerous thing for anyone to do. — by a doctor very popular in the Redding, CA area. People are headed for their local drugstore to try it out.”

    What I don’t understand is that a product exists now to prevent the SARS 2 viral infection. and is being used by health care workers specifically to limit the spread of SARS like corona viruses, MERS as well as fungal or bacterial vectors.

    I would not promote an untested product nor one that has not yet received FDA approvals. Unfortunately for all of us, there are far too many opinions and arguments for and against products offered by doctors. This itself is dangerous as I can no longer trust any of their opinions. All I can do is use them to provide the information they want to give me and then I must interpret it and balance it against countervailing information. The most important lesson we should take from this is that doctors are fallible and that they are not God.

  7. Values I forgot to add:

    17. Never give anything its plain interpretation if a sexual or scatological interpretation is possible, even if that requires pretending to mishear it. Sex, urination, and defecation are funny by nature.

    18. Play up all bodily noises so no one misses that someone blew his nose, belched, or especially, farted.

    19. Play up all gross stuff that happens, even if it’s accidental or not meant to be seen. If someone coughs up phlegm without meaning to, either because he’s ill or just has an unexpected catch in his throat, give him grief about coughing up a lung or swallowing the blob, and make sure everyone knows it happened. If someone picks his nose for a second when he thinks no one else is around because it’s dry and driving him crazy, but you see it, make sure the whole class knows about it immediately, and mercilessly get after him for it.

    20. Play up all mistakes others make, especially others that you don’t like. If someone stumbles, struggles, or otherwise has a less than perfect moment, give him crap about it constantly. If they’re not quite at the point of making an embarrassing mistake, then help them along, by tripping someone who isn’t paying attention or “accidentally” jostling someone who’s struggling with a bunch of stuff so they drop everything.

    21. Whenever something bad happens to someone else, whether you had something to do with it or not, make sure to rub it in. It’s twice as much fun when the other person is made to suffer the indignity of having it rubbed in. Sarcasm works well, like telling someone “nice dive, maybe we can get you into the Olympics” after a fall, also feigning innocence if you made them fall, like saying “don’t blame me because you trip over your own feet.” However, if you inflicted a deliberate injury, the thing to do is to feign a friendly warning, telling them that some day they will run into someone who is less even-tempered or understanding than you, and get killed.

    It all boils down to be a fucking sociopath.

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