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Media Bias Along the Political Spectrum

November 26, 2003

Brian Anderson's description of a liberal media behemoth starting to crumble before conservative challenges is several years behind the times ("Culture Clash," Opinion, Nov. 23). For the last several years, the story has been of an unchallenged conservative media behemoth that liberals have barely started to chip away at. Anderson's contention that Fox News exposes viewers to conservative opinions not heard elsewhere on TV is ludicrous. David Brooks, George Will, Ann Coulter, Robert Novak, Kate O'Beirne and many others all offer conservative spins on news events on channels other than Fox News. There is, in fact, no channel on the air that serves as a shill for liberal ideas in the way Fox does for conservative ones. Conservatives have shouted "Liberal media!" so long and so hard that every media outlet bends over backward to make sure conservatives are given an equal or greater voice.

Tom Moore

Los Angeles

*

I was aware that Dennis Miller had made the jump from comedy to political commentary, but did not know until I read Neal Gabler's "Culture Clash" piece that Gabler had accomplished precisely the opposite. His long article claiming that conservatives in this country are not as powerful as they think was a howler. Some examples: blaming conservatives for "hijacking the nation" in order to hold the presidency to some sort of standard is a bit like blaming the police for clogging the courts when they arrest offenders.

That's funny stuff. He argues that the Ronald Reagan miniseries generated only 80,000 negative e-mails but ignores the obvious alternative explanation for its cancellation: It was a substandard production, even by television's notoriously low threshold. Finally, though Gabler may be right to poke fun at reports of a "geological shift" in the American political landscape, neglecting to mention conservative dominance in the White House and Congress was pure comic genius. The arrogance of the American left prevents it from acknowledging that it is not, for now, the sole arbiter of our culture. When Gabler admits that he is in the opposition, he will be free to engage some serious political issues and stop talking about "South Park." I'll miss the laughs, though.

John A. D'Elia

Burbank

*

Gabler's discerning report on right-wing hype should be read by every journalist. For years, the conservative echo machine has been fueled by the laziness of reporters who succumb to the assumption that Fox News' 2 million viewers represent the whole of America. Some fairness, some balance.

Todd Gitlin

New York City

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