#1LinerWeds from Mike James

On our watch, America’s trust and confidence in the news media has fallen to an all-time low.

Mike James is the now-retired editor of a daily newsletter called NewsBlues, which looks primarily at Chicago television news, although what he has to say in his final column could probably apply just about anywhere in the United States, and probably the world. Robert Feder, a long-time Chicago media reporter and columnist currently working for the suburban Daily Herald newspaper, quotes extensively from Mr. James’s final column on his own blog. Let’s just say it’s strongly worded. Oddly enough, Feder’s readers, who are primarily people who work in the television industry, overwhelmingly agree with James, as evidenced by the comments the post has received.

I usually attribute this quote to Mark Twain, but learned that it was in fact Will Rogers who said it: “If you don’t read the newspaper, you’re uninformed; if you do read the newspaper, you’re misinformed.” The same could be said about television news.

By the way, Eli over at Coach Daddy wrote a great post the other day about his “breaking up” with the news. If you haven’t read it, hop on over there and do so.

One-Liner Wednesday is brought to you each week by Linda Hill and this station. Now, a word from our sponsors.

16 thoughts on “#1LinerWeds from Mike James

  1. I know that quote by Will Rogers and I always loved it. It’s so true as well as the one liner at the top. The sad thing is actions speak louder than words…..just look at Trump pushing the U.N. leader out of the way and then, feeling triumphant, buttons up his coat….ughhh


  2. I’m so torn about this, John, knowing for sure that my jaw was sore from clenching just listening to NPR this morning, and feeling like there are good journalists out there doing the right thing, we just don’t see them as often. Still, it’s so real, and one hasn’t to go far to see evidence (or hear it, as it were). Thanks for bringing my attention to Mike’s words, and for linking to my piece, too.


  3. There’s not much that I’ll trust outright coming from the media. I have to use a filter of logic and reasoning to come to real conclusions about what’s actually going on in the world. TV “news” has become more like entertainment than information. Sadly much of it is not very entertaining.

    Can you imagine the drastic change this country and its attitudes toward the present administration would take if for just one month everything was given a positive spin and talking head opinions were delivered with complete optimism? I think we’d see some great things taking shape in this country, but unfortunately I don’t think the media or many of the politicians would like to see anything that good happening. They thrive on negativity.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out


    1. Of course they don’t. It’s the old joke about the President falling out of a boat and walking on the water to shore, and the press reports it as “Trump can’t swim.” Except these people get paid to report the news, good and bad. There should be no spinning and taking sides. The media has always taken sides, but until 1988 did a good job of hiding it. Now they don’t even care, and in fact act as though it’s their job. And as far as the other points he made, about the news taking over local programming and spending hours repeating the same stories, he’s spot on.


  4. The internet and social media has changed everything. We all still need the news but we have to be so careful what we deem to be the truth. I’m still primarily a newspaper person.


    1. It’s a case of “trust, but verify.” At one time, you had several newspapers with differing points of view, and you could read each one and get a different facet of the story and sort of take the average of all of them. Newspapers are slowly shutting down and consolidating, so you don’t have that opportunity anymore. The Internet has definitely opened up a world of differing opinions, giving the reader the chance to compare notes and come up with that average. If it was still just the papers, magazines, and network news, I’m not sure you’d get that opportunity.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I don’t even know where to begin. I am from Chicago and still live somewhat near it (2 hrs.). I grew up in the sixties and watched the nightly news every night with my Grampy. We watched local, then national news. He discussed it as we watched it. These were reporters. They told us what was going on. They told us facts. It was what it was. Now…and I do think the Internet has greatly changed the flavours…it is all sensationalism mixed with personal opinion. It is truly difficult to just get the raw facts. What I want are just the facts. I will decide my own opinion; I will decide what I think and feel. These people are paid to report the news. Celebrities are paid to entertain us (for obvious reasons). They are now part of the cesspool that they used to report.


  6. Great quote by Mark Twain and a lot of truth to it, IMO. I’m sure there are some good reporters out there, which I feel for them. Decent people trying to do a good job, however, facing a world of doubt.


    1. Good reporting is no longer the focus of the news business. It’s always been about getting people to read the paper or tune in to the station, but rather than doing so with solid journalism they’re doing it with flashy headlines and sets and pretty people.

      Liked by 1 person

You can use Markdown in your comments. Thanks for your comment!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s