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Miscellaneous thoughts and ramblings
Friday, October 29, 2004
I haven't read this review yet, but check out the headline:

'Voices of Iraq': For the Iraqis Interviewed, Daily Life Is Better Today

Maybe my media-bias antenna are hypersensitive, but doesn't the opening clause sound unnecessary? Hey, readers, we just want to be sure you know, if you see this movie and think life is better for Iraqis without Saddam around, these are only the opinions of those interviewed in the movie. Everyone else in Iraq who was not interviewed for this movie - and, hey, that means their opinions don't appear in this movie! - could very likely be different. Those not present in the movie - silenced by the filmmakers! - probably loved life in peaceful pre-war Iraq. You know, when there was, like, peace and stuff.

Okay, like I said, I'm a little sensitive on this issue and maybe it's not a big deal at all. But I just, I, aargh.
Ralphie-boy: I don't think you're being hypersensitive. I think you're being perceptive. The phrase isn't even something the headline writers did with intentional bias, but you can see how an unconscious bias would work.

If the movie was an interview of Iraqis who were miserable now, thereby comfirming the headline-writer's bias, he would just write "'Voices of Iraq': Daily Life is Worse Today." But since the movie challenges his biases, it's not that he purposely wants to weaken the message, it's that he instinctively thinks "For the Iraqis interviewed...".

This would be OK if some of the columnists were right-wing and some liberal, and you could routinely be exposed to both. But that ain't so.
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