A recent Zogby poll confirms what most Americans already know painfully well, that the mainstream media is significantly further to left of the political spectrum than the general population.
Of all respondents, 64% feel the media as a leftist bias and only 28% perceive a right-leaning bias. Republicans aside, 66% of Independents and even 17% of Democrats believe that the media has a leftist bias.
Of course, none of this is a surprise. This brings us to the useful part of this article.
Many leftists have a knee-jerk reaction to any mention of Fox News. Whether they have ever seen it or not, they are firmly convinced that it is a fanatically right-wing news network. The fact that Fox does feature liberals like Alan Colmes, Juan Williams, and Greta Van Susteren while CNN, MSNBC, etc. feature almost no Republican voices is unimportant in the formation of this opinion.
Even if we concede that Fox News is biased to the right, that makes it just one out of eight news networks with a Republican bias. The left thus still controls 7 out of 8 news networks. Why, then, the obsession over the lack of a total monopoly, when they already have an 87.5% monopoly? Because their opinion is not logical, merely fashionable. There is a reason 'fashion' and 'fascism' are similar-sounding words - they originate from the Latin words for conformity.
So when your opponent says :
"..(some statement insinuating that Fox News deserves condemnation for having a right-wing bias)"
you can then call them on their hypocrisy by stating :
"But out of 8 news networks, if 7 are left-wing, and just 1 is right wing, and even that network contains liberals, why does Fox News bother you so much? If only 1 out of 8 news networks caters to half of the population, yet you want to suppress even that, that means you are opposed to free speech, doesn't it? How is what you seek even remotely fair?"
They will, of course, either quickly change the subject or attack you personally with childish insults. Either tactic is evidence that you have exposed their desire to suppress free speech. If they insist that Fox News should be suppressed because Republicans are 'dumb', then remind them of how people earning over $50,000 a year overwhelmingly voted for Bush, while Kerry had a majority only among those who earn under $30,000 a year. Income may not corelate directly to intelligence, but income certainly does not have an inverse corelation with intelligence. Anyone who suggests that a group that is 'rich' is simultaneously 'dumb' is desperately trying to fight off realities that fail to affirm their belief in their own intelligence. This usually leads to a hatred of American meritocracy, for obvious reasons.
Winning these debates is remarkably quick and easy, once you learn to offer rebuttals that take the form of questions that the opponent must think about, rather than facts that can be easily ignored.
Update : Here is a remarkable attempt by Reuters to spin US success against Al-Qaeda as a negative, in a "success creates long-term problems" vein.
Update (6/21/07) : Actually, 64% is low. MSNBC has identified that journalists donate to Democrats over Republicans at an 88% to 12% rate. That they are this undiversified in ideology is problem enough, but that an agenda pervades duties that should be held to certain professional standards is even worse.