It was indubitably heartening to learn recently that National Public Radio (NPR) had taken what passes for a bold journalistic stance these days by amending their Ethics Standards to assert, in essence, that they would report actual facts over the this-person-said/that-person-said tit for tat approach to reporting that dominates the sad state of American corporate journalism and personally makes me want to set my hair on fire eight to ten times a day.
Matt Thompson, Editorial Product Manager at NPR, even said that, "Our goal is not to please those whom we report on or to produce stories that create the appearance of balance, but to seek the truth."
Which makes Rick Pluta's Road To The White House Goes Through Michigan story that aired today on Morning Edition all the more disheartening and infuriating.
The story's news peg is Romney's whiplash-inducing assertion that he deserves credit for the success of President Obama's auto bailout. Yeeeeesch! The guy makes John Lovitz' Pathological Liar look like a lightweight.
From his introductory premise to the story's conclusion, Mr. Pluta presents a textbook case of false equivalence -- that either "side" has a shot at writing or rewriting history. Give a listen to hear a prime expample of the erosion of responsible journalism.
Dammit, dammit, dammit. Why in the name of all that is holy can't reporters get this straght?? There is a set of facts here that are true and a set of lies that another person has spewed. Stories like this just muddy the waters even more, furthering the liar's aim to confuse the issue.
Please contact NPR to let them know that this is NOT acceptable, especially in light of their laudable public embrace of truth over balance.