J. D. Heyes
Sept 26, 2012
If you’re an avid reader of Natural News, maybe the headline of this story doesn’t surprise you because, obviously, you are here for information you just can’t get in the so-called “establishment” mainstream media. But perhaps you didn’t quite know the extent of the mistrust the American people have for the Fourth Estate, which was, at our nation’s founding, given unique and unprecedented freedoms so as to afflict the comfortable and comfort the afflicted.
So much for the original agreement. According to a recent Gallup survey, Americans’ distrust of the media hit a record high this year, “with 60 percent saying they have little or no trust in the mass media to report the news fully, accurately, and fairly.”
That alarming figure is the result of a trend seen worsening over the past few years as more and more Americans became less and less trustful of Big Media.
How low will the distrust go?
The distrust “also means that negativity toward the media is at an all-time high for a presidential election year,” the Gallup survey said. “This reflects the continuation of a pattern in which negativity increases every election year compared with the year prior.”
What’s more, as negativity rises, the already yawning gap between approval and disapproval has grown wider. The current 20-point gap, said the analysis, is the highest by far since Gallup began this particular survey.
It hasn’t always been this way. Trust in the media prior to 2004 was actually much higher and more positive; it was as high as 72 percent when the question was asked by Gallup in the 1970s.
Partisanship is driving both the negative attitude towards Congress and the media (presumably the news media in particular).
“This year’s decline in media trust is driven by independents and Republicans,” said the analysis. “The 31 percent and 26 percent, respectively, who express a great deal or fair amount of trust are record lows and are down significantly from last year. Republicans’ level of trust this year is similar to what they expressed in the fall of 2008, implying that they are especially critical of election coverage.”
Democrats, by comparison, have a far greater trust in the mass media (58 percent) when compared to Republicans (26 percent) and Independents (31 percent). Some say that’s because more of the mainstream press tends to shill for Democrats and liberals in office, the most notable exception being Fox News, which leans heavily Republican.
Mistrust? It’s no wonder, given Big Media’s behavior
Americans’ record level of distrust for the mainstream media was epitomized in a story by The New York Times recently, which reported that, in exchange for access, reporters for Big Media have their stories “cleared” by those they are covering, proving just how controlled the messages are that are coming from those who mean to rule over us. What’s more, the story demonstrates that most major media sources are complicit in the packaging of information the public is “allowed” to hear.
Consider the re-election campaign of President Obama. According to the Times, quotes from the candidates often come back to them from the campaign headquarters in Chicago “redacted, stripped of colorful metaphors, colloquial language and anything even mildly provocative.” They are emailed to reporters who have been allowed, essentially, to interview campaign officials, but only under the caveat that “the press office has veto power over what statements can be quoted and attributed by name.”
In summarizing the results of its analysis, Gallup provided some ominous conclusions:
“Americans are clearly down on the news media this election year, with a record-high six in 10 expressing little or no trust in the mass media’s ability to report the news fully, accurately, and fairly. … This is particularly consequential at a time when Americans need to rely on the media to learn about the platforms and perspectives of the two candidates vying to lead the country for the next four years. … On a broad level, Americans’ high level of distrust in the media poses a challenge to democracy and to creating a fully engaged citizenry.”