Bias-Free Dennis Prager Sees Bias

[Note: This is actually part 2. You probably want to start with part 1, which is immediately below.]

Unfair and off-balance

It would be nice if we could just shut down idiocy that easily:

  1. See something stupid
  2. Prove that it is stupid
  3. It goes away

Sadly, my determination that Prager’s column is based on a false premise does not actually make that column disappear from the internet. For that reason, I should probably continue with the evisceration:

Given how obvious this bias is…

No, it’s not a given. We already established that.

…the question is not whether liberals in the media tend to offer biased reporting. The question is why? Why can’t liberal news people report the news without any slant?

First of all, it is very difficult to write an article completely free of bias. I recall seeing data somewhere that the majority of reporters are liberal. That right there will give you a bit of a natural liberal bias. However, if the reporters are doing a good job of trying to remain neutral, what you end up with is just a slight lean to the left.

Outweighing this is the fact that the news organizations themselves are part of giant corporations, and the news coverage overall actually has a strong corporate bias.

Rupert Murdoch and five friends

(Image from Zaius Nation)

Furthermore, there are the overt propaganda outfits (chief among these is Fox News) that were expressly set up with the intention of presenting conservatively-biased news.

The answer is that for people on the left, all—I repeat, (set ital) all (end ital)—professions are a means to an end, not ends in themselves.

I guess that would include the profession of copy-editor. Prager’s was so busy pursuing a liberal agenda that he forgot to remove the typesetting cues.

But seriously, I find it amazing that Prager has such near-divine insight that he is able to determine that liberals think that every single profession is a means to achieving total cultural domination. Where is his proof? Did he find a copy of The Protocols of the Elders of Pelosi somewhere?

The Liberal Agenda

How is an exterminator, by killing roaches, advancing the liberal agenda? And if a traffic cop tries to get everybody to move to the left, all he will do is cause an accident.

(Note: Those last two sentences really should be considered straw-man arguments, but Prager said all professions! Prager is forcing me into bad writing! He must view his profession as a means to achieving the conservative agenda. And he’s pretty good at it!)

For most liberal news reporters… [t]he purpose of the media in general and of reporting specifically is to promote social justice and the social transformation of society.

I don’t doubt that some liberal news reporters would like to use their position to that end. The reality, though, is that type of reporting is very difficult to do within the corporate media structure. Desire does not equal action.

For most liberal judges, the primary purpose of being a judge is to promote social justice and transform society. That is why liberal judges are so much more likely to be judicial activists than conservative judges.

No. “Judicial activism” is a term invented and defined by the right. Most conservative judges are excluded by definition. When a conservative judge does his job and rules against them, the conservatives just invoke the No True Scotsman fallacy. Cognitive dissonance is a bitch. Avoid it at all costs.

Cognitive dissonance

The task of a teacher is to teach…. But, again, this conflicts with the social justice goal of the left.… History—and English and political science, and sociology and other liberal arts—teachers must use their classroom to produce young people who will wish to engage in society-transforming work for social justice.

That sure is a great story. Too bad it’s not true.

For most liberals in the arts (there are very few conservatives in the arts)…

That’s a really good point. Why is that?

…there is no denial of their having an agenda. They state quite candidly that the purpose of the arts is to challenge the (conservative) status quo, to raise political and social consciousness by advancing a “progressive” political and social agenda.

Historically, art has been one of the few avenues of anti-establishment expression, whether that establishment is left or right. If you look at totalitarian regimes throughout history—Nazi Germany, communist China, etc.—you find censorship of the arts as one of the means of controlling the masses. Is Prager now advocating a suppression of the arts? He keeps disturbing company.

Even the natural sciences are increasingly subject to being rendered a means to a “progressive” end.

It’s a good thing the Republicans didn’t manipulate science for their own benefit.

The best analogy of the directing of all human endeavors toward a left-wing purpose would be those early medieval centuries of European life when just about everything man made was supposed to reflect a religious consciousness.

Most moderns look upon that period as a dark age—perhaps a bit unfairly at times.

No. Quite fairly:

Dennis Prager likes the Dark Ages

Prager finishes with a triple-stupid:

But the people who most scorn what they deem the religious “Dark Ages” are trying to building [sic] a secular-left dark age in our time.

1: He just contradicted his last sentence. Now he thinks the Dark Ages were bad.

Because the left is a religion, a substitute for the Christianity it seeks to displace.

2: Conservatives, at least those of Prager’s ilk, believe that if you replace one thing with another, the replacement must be similar to the original. If Christianity is replaced by secularism, then secularism must be a religion.

3: There’s no evidence that the “liberal agenda” even seeks to displace Christianity. This is the typical “Christians are being persecuted!” cry we hear over and over from these people.

I have news for you Prager. Most liberals are Christians, even if it’s a form you don’t recognize. You’re so busy trying to determine who the true Scotsmen are that you overlook that we’re all human, and that we just want what is best for all.

Conservative Cat

13 Responses to “Bias-Free Dennis Prager Sees Bias”

  1. Parrotlover77 Says:

    My head officially exploded. I have never, in my entire life, seen somebody link the Christian Dark Ages (which were an incredibly conservative time of human history) to a supposed Liberals Gone Wild time of our history.

    Wow…

  2. Lindsay Says:

    So is this dude trying to redefine what “Dark Age” was? Really, I don’t think he understood what the Dark Age was in the first place.

    It’s really amazing how many people have such little understanding of history in general…much less any regard for it.

  3. Sarah Trachtenberg Says:

    Well thought-out response. I love articles like Prager’s bc they make me think, “Are you f****g serious?”

    Did you all notice how he said that academics are all liberal, except for those in the sciences, and then turns around and says that scientists are biased, too? I assume he means those pesky biologists with their evolution and those buzzkill physicists with their old universe, heliocentric hogwash.

    I heard another pundit say that the reason academia was crawling with liberals was bc the liberals went into academia to dodge the draft. There’s no denying it.

    Sarah

  4. Parrotlover77 Says:

    Well, I’m a pacificist wuss, so I’d dodge the draft that way. Plus, I’m liberal. Whoa, I think he might be onto something. Obviously if I would do it, all liberals would!

  5. Parrotlover77 Says:

    Er… Pacifist

    Not really a “pacificist” since i’m on the east coast… But, I digress… ;-)

  6. Lindsay Says:

    The question should be why are there not very many conservatives (outside of places like Liberty U) who go into academics.

    I’ve had a few conservative professors in my time (I did go to the University of Nebraska after all) so they do exist. But also these professors were probably closer to old school fiscal conservatives and/or libertarians than what goes for a Republican these days.

  7. Parrotlover77 Says:

    Good point. I’ve had libertarian conservative professors before too. I really struggle to think of any professor I’ve had that was a modern republican kool-aid drinker. Of course, not all professors wear their political beliefs on their sleeves, so they may have been there, but just been silent.

    But then again my dad was a professor and he was/is a Republican, so they are out there. He’s just not very political (ie, didn’t wear his political beliefs on his sleeve). But really he’s just in love with Reagan, so again, I’m not really sure that counts as a “modern republican kool-aid drinker.”

  8. Lindsay Says:

    I wouldn’t count your dad PL77 with the neo-con of today.

    I think it is interesting to explore why the lock step conservative of today isn’t very present on our university campus.

    Is it fear of being “attacked” by liberal professors?
    Is it the aversion to the progressive enviroment…or at least a lack of interest to be in a progressive atmosphere?

    I don’t hear much about professors being discriminated against for having conservative beliefs. That leads me to believe that A) there aren’t that many neo-cons who are interested in teaching at institutions of higher learning B) the conservatives that do may not feel particulary threatened or uncomfortable.

  9. Helena Says:

    First of all you missed the most important basis of your refutation. The liberal bias that education, science, and everything else has to be turned toward social reform emerged in the nineteenth century as a secularized version of Christian eschatology. The reason liberal want to make everything better is that they realized Jesus wasn’t going to come back and do it for them. Further, if you look at the social program of the Jesus movement as portrayed in the gospels (and its already obscured even by then), it was one of social reform: “A rich man can enter the kingdom of heaven as easily as a ship’s cable can pass through the eye of a needle (that camel business is probably textual corruption)–The first shall be last and the last shall be first–take all you have and give it to the poor” and so on.

    Then that graph about the history of science! its about as stupid as something the DI would put out!.

    1. Science in ancient civilization was going exactly nowhere. There is no indication at all of any movement toward the scientific method. The high point of ancient science was probably Archimedes, fl. some five centuries before the Constantinian conversion.

    2. Science hardly stopped during the Middle Ages. Do you wear glasses? thank Medieval optics. Know what a prism is? same place. The technological advances in the middle ages in water powered machinery (which led directly to the industrial revolution) were stunning. Ever use a graph (I mean a real one with specific data points, not this nonsense)? Who do think invented them? Descartes? Try Nicole Oresme. Its also ridiculous to limit consideration to the Christian world. We have India to thank for zero and medieval Arabs for algebra.

    3. That graph shows a significant uptick marked ‘Roman” Can you show me some scientific advances (even technological improvements) Romans were responsible for? No? Perhaps because and technology all the science they had came from Greeks. its true they sued it far more efficiently and on larger scales than the Greeks ever thought of. But that is just more evidence that graph is fabricated from whole cloth. Also, in terms of science, the Mesopotamians had it all over the Egyptians–but by now you;re getting the point

    But I am sure you’ll discount all this from a lowly liberal arts major–a Classicist even!.

  10. Ron Britton Says:

    Helena:

    I don’t know where your liberal arts inferiority complex comes from. Dennis Prager is the one you need to talk to.

    You’re right that the scientific method as we know it did not exist in the ancient world. Some aspects certainly did exist, but so did methods that were counter-productive. Many of the Greek philosophers, for example, had the wrong approach. They sat around and voted on how things worked.

    The chart is an oversimplification, but it makes a valuable point. No, science did not stop during the Dark Ages. However, there is a strong inverse correlation between scientific advancement and proximity to religious power centers in Europe at the time. Not much was coming out of Rome in those days, or any place where the Pope had any influence. There were some isolated enclaves in Europe where the religious intolerance was weakest, and those were the places where science survived. My memory fails me on which cities these were. Maybe somebody who has studied that era more recently can fill me in.

    Your other point about India and Arabia just proves my point. While the Europeans were scrambling around eating mud, the civilizations that were free of fundamentalism at the time were flourishing.

  11. Parrotlover77 Says:

    That graph shows a significant uptick marked ‘Roman” Can you show me some scientific advances (even technological improvements) Romans were responsible for?

    Do the aquaducts count? No architectural improvements? Wasn’t the arch and/or dome a roman concept, or am I mistaken? Roads were certainly refined during the Roman era. How about the concept and refinement of the Senate and representational government in general? Not really science, but I’m just throwing out the things I know of from my very, very lay knowledge of history (IANAH).

    Sure, Rome co-opted a hell of a lot of stuff (afterall, they were an empire that absorbed most of the rest of the world at the time so the question ‘what is roman’ can be thrown out on a lot of progress), but to say they didn’t contribute anything is absurd. And whether it was Roman or not, the time period did advance.

    I had an oppressive liberal professor (I mean, obviously) once tell me that if not for the Dark Ages, Shakespeare would have likely written his works on a laptop.

  12. Ezekiah Says:

    Ok, maybe I’m just a liberal commie pinko, but…. since when did Justic become a dirty word? Admitedly I don’t read the bible, but I think I would have heard if it was one of those abominations…. Maybe it takes on sinister meanings when paired with the word “social”.

    the media in general and of reporting specifically is to promote social justice and the social transformation of society

    Also, what other type of transformation would one make on society? Definitely bad writing right there.

    Again: “teachers must use their classroom to produce young people who will wish to engage in society-transforming work for social justice”. IF ONLY!

    If I read this right, he thinks teachers should use their classrooms to produce young people who will wish to engage in society-transforming work for social injustice? Or maybe he thinks teachers should want their students to be absolutely apathetic about all of society…. that’s a stunning way to produce jack-shit.

    I’d be more eloquent but I think some of the dumb rubbed off.

  13. Sue Blue Says:

    …even the natural sciences are increasingly subject to being rendered a means to a “progressive” end.

    Well, ain’t that a cryin’ shame? Isn’t it just too damn bad that learning how man-made pollution causes climate change makes us “liberals” want to do something about it? And what a travesty that the increasing proof that we are related to every other species on earth makes those with consciences increasingly reluctant to kill them. Damn, those progressive scientists just suck the all the fun out of life for conservatives, don’t they?