Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Progressive Rant

I am a progressive. I'd say "liberal", but the conservative movement in America has managed to propagate "The Big Lie" that liberal is somehow "immoral" rather than simply a point of view with which they disagree. That being said, I'm incessantly assaulted by those people who disagree with my viewpoints (many of whom are close friends of mine). While I appreciate that my views are not universal AND that freedom of thought and speech are cornerstones of the United States, I find that certain conservative pundits repeatedly spread misinformation in hopes of helping their cause rather than actually using solid arguments supporting their cases. I guess that would take too much effort. So, I often find that I must collect resources to cut through the BS and misinformation that I'm assaulted with.

Now, I'm not going to stick my head in the sand and say that my prime news sources don't have any political agenda. However, I would argue that there is a difference in the quality of news I hear on CNN vs. Fox News.

What types of things am I talking about? Here is an example. When I say I want "Progressive Healthcare reform" every single conservative I know responds with "Socialized Medicine Sucks". Here is a little snippet from a recent post from Media Matters: SOURCE.

    No issue incurs the wrath of these modern-day Red hunters more than health-care reform. For more than 75 years, conservatives have smeared progressive attempts to reform our faltering health-care system as "socialized medicine."

    Let's get one thing straight. Anyone who argues that progressive health-care reform initiatives amount to "socialized medicine" is being disingenuous at best. At worst, they lack a basic understanding of what "socialized medicine" really is.

    Simply put, health-care reform that leaves the for-profit health insurance industry intact, reform that leaves doctors and other medical professionals free to offer their services outside of a government system, reform that leaves citizens free to choose a private health-care plan over a government plan simply can't be described honestly as "socialized medicine."

In the spirit of this, I'm going to list a few links for all that address assertions made by my political opponents.

1. Fact Check - (Non-partisan) a site that catches assertions made by our elected officials and notes half-truths or mis-truths. If you are a conservative trying to convince me of something, get your facts straight - don't assume Limbaugh, Hannity, Coulter, and O'Reilly are telling you the absolute truth.
2. Media Matters - (Progressive) This seems to be the best site for correcting the blatant lies spread by various Fox News types. I've seen more cases of falsehoods debunked here than almost anywhere else. This is a more progressive link, but still recommended reading.
3. Blast the Right - (Progressive) This podcast is a little further to the left than I am. However, Jack Clark provides an excellent weekly podcast addressing various issues and includes a bibliography for EVERY episode he releases. He includes some great quotes of various well known people that has inspired me to take a more pro-active stance.
4. Fairness & Accuracy In Reporting - (Non-partisan) This is a website I've only recently started looking at. It seems promising in what it presents.
5. My History Can Beat Up Your Politics - (Non-partisan) This podcast is more history than politics, but I include it here because it gives a bit of an insight as to the why's of what is going on today.

In conclusion, if you want to convince me, I want REAL SOLID ARGUMENTS as to why you think what you think. I don't want BS reasons that have no foundation or WORSE a foundation based on false information. Put your money where your mouth is.

Got a source you want to share? POST IT!


Chris said...

I do agree with your rant, I am politically conservative and socially moderate which puts me quite a bit left of some of our other friends. I like watching Fox and CNN. But, on the other side of Fox is MSNBC, you can't tell me they are any more "Fair and Balanced" than Fox News. Granted Fox News has a fairly Right agenda, but MSNBC is just as left if not more so than Fox. As for CNN, the only reason I watch them is because of Darth Vader.

Matthew said...

I'm not going to play that game.

If you care to make a specific proposal as to health care reform, then I will be happy to discuss or criticize it.

Labeling something 'progressive/liberal/commie/socialist/troglodyte/conservative/fascist' is counter-productive.

As for news sources, I'm not playing that game either. If you want to know about the economic impact of something, the Financial Times, Wall Street Journal and Forbes are generally pretty reliable. The Economist used to be, but less so today.

The Atlantic is almost always good reading, and whilst individual writers have definite biases, they generally get their facts right. They are generally unafraid of logic.

Mother Jones and (less so) New Republic are polemical, but do excellent investigative work.

New Standard is a fun read, but is also biased as hell. The National Review corner, anything by Michael Barone and Mickey Kaus do excellent political insight.

DailyKos and Huffington offer good insight into the thoughts of the Dem grassroots and insiders, respectively.

Volokh Conspiracy is the single best website for Constitutional Law and theory, hands down. Every attorney I know that takes an interest in such matters agrees.

My point is that I've abandoned almost all of the mainstream media sites. It's not the bias (Kos is as biased as you can get), it's the ignorance.

I'd rather go to PopSci or Scientific American for science news than CNN or Fox.

On economic news, Wall Street Journal is the 900 pound gorilla. For legal, political, entertainment, environmental, or local news I have my trusted sites. And all of them are expert, specialist sites.

I'm better informed about state governmental matters than ever thanks to Peach Pundit.

Most people aren't willing to put forth the effort to develop a comprehensive list of news sites, but enough of us are to make the MSM's readership/viewership decline significantly.

Clay said...

I just have one question...Since when has ANY government run program ever worked and not cost us millions? Yea...I would have to opt out of that. Also leave me the option to take my money back, cause I don't want to pay for Jose to have health care....Yeah I don't care about you Jose.

Rachael Storm said...


I think you totally missed the point of the post.

And I'll debate healthcare with you at another time.