THE BLOG
03/18/2010 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Gross Failure of the Media

A new poll by Public Policy Polling shows that 52% of Republicans believe that Obama did not really win the 2008 election. You think that's absurd, get a load of why -- ACORN stole it for him. Yes, a majority of Republicans in the country believe ACORN flat out stole the election for Obama. Only 27% of Republicans believe Obama won the election legitimately. 27%.

Those are stunning numbers. There is not one shred of evidence that ACORN "stole" one vote for Obama in the 2008 election. Do you know how many it would have needed to "steal" to swing the election from Obama to McCain? 9.5 million.

But it's not just Republicans. 26% of Americans believe that ACORN stole the 2008 election. Only 62% of the country believes Obama was legitimately elected. That's mental.

How can over a quarter of the country believe something so patently untrue and utterly ridiculous? Especially given that there isn't one iota of proof. I'm not even aware of a single credible charge of fraud in the election. Yet, this huge percentage of the country believes the greatest electoral fraud in American history happened a year ago and that 9.5 million votes were stolen without anyone noticing (or any Republican official complaining).

This is very similar to when 69% of the country in September, 2003 believed that Saddam Hussein was personally responsible for 9/11. No evidence of that whatsoever, but people believed it. Why?

It's because conservative media puts these messages out there non-stop without any effective challenge. They poison the conversation with absolute falsehoods and no one fights back. Who's fighting for ACORN now? Who is telling people that ACORN did not steal any votes in 2008? There is a continual battering ram of lies from one side and no response from the other.

But this is not just the fault of Democrats or progressives in not fighting back well enough. It is the job of the press to inform the American public. And obviously they're doing a terrible job. They constantly call everything 50-50. They're scared to death of saying that one side is simply lying. They cower behind the mantle of neutrality instead of challenging all sides to tell the truth. You're not supposed to be neutral in reporting lies and facts. You're supposed to be on the side of truth.

This is not to say that Democrats always tell the truth or that the press has to always say liberals are right. That's absurd. No one believes that. And if Democrats lie, then the press should of course call them out just as forcefully. But right now, there is one side of the conversation that is purposely filling the country with misinformation. If the press does not challenge them on it and does not correct the record, then they are just as culpable for misleading the American people as the people who spread the lies in the first place.

What's worse, the guy who cheats or the ref who lets him? The job of the press is not to be neutral to the facts. It is their job to make sure the American people are not grossly misinformed as they were before and after the Iraq War and as they are now. Every member of the working press should be embarrassed about the results of this poll. The next question should be - what are they going to do about it?

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