Textbook Example of Media Bias at the New York Times

Textbook Example of Media Bias at the New York Times

The New York Times was quick to report on the edited Mother Jones “secret” video of Mitt Romney speaking at a fundraiser back in May, and they were quick to do so in a straightforward way. Their original story has been wiped from their website and replaced with one dripping with left-wing spin to the point you’d think it was a press release from the Obama campaign.

Unfortunately for the Times, there are a lot of websites that republish their work the minute it’s posted. That means it lives forever, even after they’ve killed it.

It’s unfortunate for them, but very fortunate for those of us who like to expose how media bias works.

The original piece contains this paragraph:

Romney told reporters Monday night that his remarks were “not elegantly stated” and were “spoken off the cuff.” But he says Obama’s approach is “attractive to people who are not paying taxes.”

In the new piece that paragraph reads like this:

Mr. Romney addressed the video, somewhat awkwardly, at a fund-raiser Monday night in Costa Mesa, Calif., summoning reporters with a few moments’ notice to walk through the Segerstrom Center for the Arts, which was filled with guests sipping drinks at tables elegantly draped in blue cloths.

The first one simply conveys facts, the second one adds commentary designed to paint a picture of bumbling with “somewhat awkwardly” and of elitism with “guests sipping drinks at tables elegantly draped in blue cloths.”

But it doesn’t end there. 

The original reads:

Jim Messina, Obama’s campaign manager, said in a statement Monday evening that it was “shocking” that Romney would “go behind closed doors” to describe nearly half of the country in such terms.

Again, straightforward reporting. But the new version reads quite differently:

Mr. Romney, who has been under fire for releasing only two years of his tax returns, was quickly attacked by the Obama campaign. Jim Messina, Mr. Obama’s campaign manager, said in a statement Monday evening that it was “shocking” that Mr. Romney would “go behind closed doors” to describe nearly half of the country in such terms.

Weird how, in a story that has absolutely nothing to do with tax returns, the Times feels the need to editorialize about Romney’s tax returns. The only people “firing” at Romney for his tax returns are on the payroll of the Obama campaign and “journalists” who write things like this that read as if they’re padding their resume for a position in a second term.

The new version of the story has nearly double the words as the original and is full of editorializing of the sort listed above. The original reads like a news story.

In a tale of two stories, the former “new” version is committed to attacking Mitt Romney and reelected the President, the latter is simply committed to conveying facts. That’s probably why the former has been scrubbed from the Times‘ website and latter exists. 

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