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Media Matters Continues to Produce "Research" Without Value

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Posted on August 17 2009 8:00 pm
David Swindle is the Managing Editor of NewsReal Blog and the Associate Editor of FrontPage Magazine. Follow him on Twitter here
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Bill+Hicks

Whenever it comes time to check in with the antics over at the “progressive” media “watchdog” group Media Matters I inevitably find myself recalling one of the rants of one of my comedic heroes, the late Bill Hicks.

Blasting the pornography-criminalization position, Hicks said in one of his routines:

Supreme Court says pornography is any act that has no merit and causes sexual thoughts. Hmm… Yeah… And… So…. What?

Hicks would go on to elaborate that by that definition, virtually every commercial on television would be considered pornography — a dead-on observation. (Hicks’ politics were all over the map — sometimes leftist other times boldly libertarian.)

Media Matters produces a different kind of pornography but still generates the same kind of response from me time and time again: Yeah… And… So… What? Most of the time when I’m browsing through their research category — try it the next time you’re having a hard time falling asleep — it’s difficult to figure out just what’s so wrong or offensive about what they’re pointing out.

stossel

Take this bit of “research” here on libertarian journalist and 20/20 anchor John Stossel:

ABC’s John Stossel will reportedly moderate three “town hall-style” “health care meetings” organized by the Wisconsin chapter of the conservative group Americans for Prosperity and intended to increase “pressure” on the state’s Democratic members of Congress on health care reform. Stossel has recently reported on health care issues on ABC’s 20/20, which he co-anchors; that report included criticisms of the purported health care reform goals of President Obama and Democratic members of Congress.

Let’s all say it together now: Yeah… And… So… What?

Apparently for Media Matters, Stossel’s crime is that the sponsor of the event at which he’s moderating is the conservative group Americans For Prosperity, which opposes socialized medicine.

Yeah… And… So… What?

Why is it so bad if Stossel or any other journalist or TV anchor moderated a panel at an event hosted by a political action group? Heck, why is it even inappropriate for Stossel — or any other journalist — to reveal their opinions on socialized medicine? It’s not any secret that Stossel injects his libertarianism into some of his 20/20 segments. Yeah… And… So… What? He’s got a syndicated newspaper column too. Is Media Matters going to pound nails through his wrists and crucify him for that too?

I’m going to put the next two sentences in capitalized letters since I would be yelling them were I speaking:

THERE IS NO STORY HERE. THIS “RESEARCH” HAS ABSOLUTELY NO USE OR VALUE.

And it’s when one comes to that realization about so much of Media Matters’ work that another Hicks line comes to mind:

People suck, and that’s my contention. I can prove it on a scratch of paper with a pen. Give me a f—ing Etch-a-sketch, I’ll do it in three minutes. The proof, the fact, the factorum. I’ll show my work, case closed. I’m tired of this back-slapping “aren’t humanity neat?” bulls—. We’re a virus with shoes, okay? That’s all we are.

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