The New York Times’ Two-Party Bias Gets Absurd

It’s become a standard pattern in the major news media. Instead of presenting people with a poll of the actual candidates in the presidential election, they offer people an imaginary choice between only Trump and Clinton and report the results. Sometimes, several paragraphs down, they’ll add the results where people are allowed to choose from any of the candidates. With Johnson frequently topping 10%, that’s a huge omission. The New York Times has outdone them all, though.

Take a look at the following screen shot, which I got from this page. Trump’s and Clinton’s faces and numbers are shown, and below is a faceless, numberless button that says “Show Gary Johnson.” The candidates from the Green and CIA parties don’t even get that much acknowledgement. That’s not just being biased, it’s shoving bias in our faces and bragging.
New York Times poll results. Pictures and numbers for Clinton and Trump, and a "show Gary Johnson" button below.

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One Response to “The New York Times’ Two-Party Bias Gets Absurd”

  1. Eyal Mozes Says:

    I think it’s been clear for some time that the New York Times’ show of opposition to Donald Trump is just that; a show. There’s probably no organization in the US that has done more than the New York Times to prepare the way for Trump and to help him, and is more to blame for his rise.

    The New York Times’ attitude consists of total contempt for facts and logic, making what they want to believe into the only epistemological standard; contempt for any civility in debate, constantly insulting both the motives and the intelligence of anyone who does not completely agree with them; and belief in government power as the panacea for every problem, with contempt for any suggestion that there may be limit on what government may legitimately do or can competently do. Now that Trump comes has taken the same attitude, with all three elements, into the election campaign, he does have a chance of winning; that was a completely foreseeable consequence of the New York Times’ decades-long campaign to inculcate this attitude in their readers and to make it respectable.

    Trump central strategy is this election is to try to make the public forget that any candidates exist other than him and Clinton; and specifically to make them forget the existence of Gary Johnson. If voters who approve of Trump, and believe he’d make a good president, were the only ones to vote for him, he’d have no chance; there aren’t nearly enough such voters, and he knows it. His one chance is to get enough people who recognize what a disaster he’d be to still vote for him as “the lesser of two evils”. There is no clear answer to the question of who would make a worse president, Trump or Clinton; there are reasonable arguments for either answer; so as long as the public can be lulled into believing that these really are the two choices, Trump has a chance. And the New York Times are once again helping Trump with his strategy, doing everything to cooperate with his efforts to make people forget Johnson’s existence.

    Johnson is far from a consistent libertarian; but he is clearly the antithesis of all three elements of the New York Times attitude. He cares about the facts; he goes out of his way to be civil and polite even when disagreeing; and he accepts limits on what the government may and can do. This makes him, to the New York Times, the great enemy, which they hope they can defeat more effectively by ignoring him than by attacking him. The editors and writers of the New York Times probably do have a slight preference for seeing Clinton as president rather than Trump; but it is evidently not nearly as important to them as stopping Johnson. If by helping make the public forget about Johnson, and helping to keep him out of the presidential debates, they end up bringing about Trump’s election, that’s a price they’ll happily accept.


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