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Why do Americans hate the media? Or why do the media wish they hated the media?

By Ezra Klein,

“Al Gore’s new essay in Rolling Stone, about impending climate disasters, is mainly about the failure of the media to direct adequate attention to the issue, and to call out paid propagandists and discredited phony scientists. That’s where the essay starts, and what it covers in its first 5,000 words. The second part, less than half as long, and much more hedged in its judgment, is about the Obama Administration’s faltering approach on climate change. But of course the immediate press presentation on the essays has been all ‘OMG Gore attacks Obama!’ For instance in Slate, TPM, NY Mag, and the Atlantic’s own Wire site. ... The reaction to Gore’s essay illustrates the pattern: from his point of view, it’s one more (earnest) attempt to say ‘Hey, listen up about this problem!’ As conveyed by the press, it’s one more skirmish on the ‘liberals don’t like Obama’ front, and one more illustration of the eyes-glazing-over trivia and details about melting icebergs and scientific disputes.”

— James Fallows revisits his “Why Americans Hate the Media” thesis. But is this why Americans hate the media? Or is it why they should hate the media? Talking Points Memo isn’t selling the story that way because they don’t want the maximum number of readers for it. They’re selling it that way because they do.

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