Opinion rather than news

Question: At the risk of beating a dead horse to death, I have noticed a good many of your readers are asking a sincere question about the extensive left leaning of the press. This in my opinion does not involve the Spokesman-Review rather television news, namely ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC and CNN to be very blunt about it. Their agenda is to replace the Republican dominance in our nation with Democrats. Their efforts are undisguised but in trying to discredit our President they don't spare the horses on appearing anti-Republican, anti-America and anti-God.

I believe the Constitution covers freedom of the press which leaves it with no strings attached as it should be but we are experiencing an abuse of power like never before. I always figured they are there to report the news. Today it is almost like they are saying "If you don't like it, lump it" and consequently it turns out to be opinion rather then news.

They suppress the news on a daily basis. When is the last time we heard one derogatory report on Kerry? It just doesn't happen yet President Bush is brought to task many times in each broadcast. This may be an unfair question to ask you but someone a lot smarter than me must surely have an answer other than to just say turn off the TV. We are experiencing an abuse of The Constitution of the United States of America. -- Robert A. Clouse, Spokane
P.S. What in blazes is a blog?

Answer 1: I am not uncomfortable talking about newspapers and, in general, how the print medium reports and presents the news. I've lived in the newspaper world for more than 30 years. I'm on much less comfortable ground dealing with broadcast. I've never lived in that world. Further, because of the schedules we keep in the newspaper buisness, I almost never see network news and only occasionally get the chance to focus on the cable news channels. So I can't speak with any authority on how and why they do what they do.

I will say that the broadcast journalists I've met through the years are hard-working people of integrity who try to do the best they can to deliver news and informatrion in a medium that is quite unforgiving. It's hard to squeeze the world into an inflexible 30 minutes. The script for an entire 30-minute newscast would not fill a full newspaper page.

It's probably also worth noting that a good many people see the greatest threat to our constitution emanating from interest groups that would control the press, limit its watchdog function and force it to report events through the current administration's filter. Unquestioning politically correct reportage isn't journalism, it's propaganda. And that cuts both ways. -- Steve Smith, editor

Answer 2: The rather atrocious word "blog" is computer geek shorthand for Weblog, or an online journal. These journals come in many forms, from personal diaries, to political commentary, to compilations of news briefs, to explanatory columns like this one. They typically are written in short takes, in reverse chronological order (meaning the most recent post at the top), contain links to other Web sites, and are updated frequently. -- Ken Sands, managing editor of online and new media

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