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JLeslie's avatar

What political show is the most balanced now?

Asked by JLeslie (55551points) 3 months ago from iPhone

I used to watch Morning Joe, because I liked that there was a good representation of Republicans and Democrats. Joe was a Republican (although not hard right, I saw him as a conservative), Mika a Democrat, and regulars like Pat Buchanan, Noonan, along with Democrats discussing current events and current political issues.

I miss it. Is there any show on TV now that cares about the opinions of both sides? That is willing to discuss the topics? Even discuss the “lies” being told. Is it because no one is willing to be put on the spot now?

I might try C-Span again. I haven’t watched C-Span in a while, but it’s not the same as watching a morning show.

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40 Answers

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

Nope, not a single one that I can think of. That’s part of the reason most TV and recent movies are so bad.

rockfan's avatar

Can’t think of a single one either. Real Time with Bill Maher used to be a great show with political discussion, but lately he’s been a partisan hack and parrots establishment talking points.

A few weeks ago Maher actually said he was rooting for the recession so Trump could get impeached.

rockfan's avatar

But to be honest, a news show having “both sides” makes zero sense in most instances. For example if the topic of climate change is being discussed, it would be insane to give complete quacks the same airtime as scientists and professionals.

notnotnotnot's avatar

First of all, there is nothing on tv worth watching. Seriously. It’s just corporate propaganda. More importantly, what does “both sides” mean? There aren’t two sides to things. There are many. And as @rockfan mentioned, framing things as being “balanced” or presenting “both sides” is a very dangerous idea. And when “both sides” are presented, they are generally two positions that share some very fundamental ideas.

Additionally, you might want to consider tv as a dangerous medium to be consuming. Besides the concentrated corporate ownership and clear propaganda objectives, it’s a strange way to be consuming information. It’s a very passive one that doesn’t allow for the usual interaction that is required to understand something.

When you are reading about a topic, you might have many tabs open, as you look up claims made in an article or update your understanding of context of a particular detail. But watching tv doesn’t allow for any of this.

JLeslie's avatar

^^TV doesn’t allow you to also look things up on your computer? What do you think that everyone who watches TV are zombies? I’m so tired of that stereotype.

If you allow nay sayers to speak, and have people from the other side to refute what they are saying, present facts, reference research, reference actual laws, then EVERYONE might be part of the audience. Right now only the left is watching the left biased stations, and only the right is watching right biased stations. No one learns anything that way. Even if your only goal is to figure out how to have your side win, you need to hear and understand the other side. You need to understand the voter who is willing to change sides.

The fact is a huge portion of America watches TV. If you want to ignore that go ahead, but I think it’s a mistake.

notnotnotnot's avatar

@JLeslie: “Right now only the left is watching the left biased stations”

I don’t even know what to say if you believe there is anything even remotely “left” on tv.

Anyway, it sounds like you have your mind made up, so just pick any of them. They’re all fine.

JLeslie's avatar

^^My mind made up about what? The Q is asking if anyone knows of any political “news” shows that has representatives from both sides. If your answer is no, which I guess it is, then fine that’s your answer.

If you think there is nothing left biased that’s a really incredible statement. Nothing. Nothing at all. Ok.

rojo's avatar

I think we have lost track of the facts. Facts don’t have two sides. News shows have become more entertainment than news, no longer presenting just the facts but providing a viewpoint along with actual news, doesn’t matter which side of the aisle you support, this is what happens.
For US politics I find it best to consult foreign correspondents. BBC news and Reuters news service, while not giving a totally unbiased view of the actions of the US, at least are less subject to the pressures placed upon domestic news groups.

canidmajor's avatar

@JLeslie, I think @notnotnotnot is more about making a personal point about just how very ignorant he finds us all with our concepts of liberalism, rather than understanding that in the contexts of these discussions on Fluther “left” is exactly as you have portrayed it.

rockfan's avatar

Hardly anyone on the major news talk shows actually have principled liberal or conservative positions. And the ones that do mostly get fired.

JLeslie's avatar

@rojo Even if everyone agrees on the facts that doesn’t change that there will be differing opinions about many topics. Many current issues are very complicated. That’s another problem I have with political discussion today, it’s often presented as black and white, good and bad, right and wrong, but very few things are that simple. People come from different perspectives and experiences.

rojo's avatar

And that is the problem, @JLeslie. We no longer get just news, we get a little bit of news with a lot of opinion and the two are not differentiated most of the time.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

You almost have to see the same story on cnn and then on fox to subtract out the political spin and get actual facts.

JLeslie's avatar

@rojo I’m with you on that. I think I wrote “news” in quotes somewhere on this Q.

I guess with political news I expect some opinion about the issues. It isn’t like reporting events that are simply happening. There is discussion to be had about how to solve some of the political issues of the day.

RedDeerGuy1's avatar

I like PBS newshour. Less drama.

rojo's avatar

@ARE_you_kidding_me I have noted that many times you do not get the same news on those two channels. What one considers important, the other ignores almost completely.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

I know, it’s almost comical. Headline news on one sometimes gets no mention on the other especially if it is something about Trump.

gorillapaws's avatar

@JLeslie Everyone you mentioned on Morning Joe is fairly conservative. Almost all mainstream media is on the spectrum of extremely conservative to moderately conservative. They are owned by multi-billion dollar corporate conglomerates, thanks to Clinton. See this Article.

“In 1983, 90% of US media was controlled by 50 companies; today, 90% is controlled by just 5 companies.”

I certainly don’t trust AT&T or Comcast to give me the truth on net neutrality. During the 2016 campaign, they barely mentioned Bernie Sanders, and gave even less coverage to third party candidates. The progressive voice in this country is completely silent from the mainstream discussion, despite progressive policies polling very strongly.

To answer your question, there are no “balanced” shows on TV, they are all pro-corporate.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

“Almost all mainstream media is on the spectrum of extremely conservative to moderately conservative.”

In no way is that true. Fox news is the outlier as is talk radio. The rest is deeply left or just left of center.

JLeslie's avatar

@gorillapaws Are you talking about Buchanan and Noonan? That’s my point, the show used to have some very conservative people representing and explaining that side. Willie Geist is still there, he’s a moderate republican. They always had Democrats on the show. Now, they have almost all Democrats, and the entire group of hosts doesn’t like Trump from what I can tell. When I tune into Morning Joe now it’s Mika rolling her eyes, it’s both Joe and Mika trying to steer politicians, it has very much shifted to the left, and to me they are trying to manipulate, not just report and give opinions. Everyone on the show this morning wore blue. Everyone.

Today Mika said she reached out to Ivanka about the children being separated from parents to make a statement, she told the audience part of what Ivanka said, then came way to close to revealing some of the record stuff, and then said she told Ivanka if you aren’t going to say XXY then we won’t have you on the show. I don’t remember what it was, and I understand not wanting to give the Trumps’ air time to promote some of their BS, but on this I would have liked to have heard a statement from Ivanka whatever it is. Let her answer, or try to dodge, some questions.

Edit: as a side note, I’m so glad the media changed blue to signify Democrats and red to signify Republicans.

gorillapaws's avatar

At this point in time, I would say that over 90% of elected Democrats are moderately conservative. Most are further right than Republicans were in the 90’s. The Democratic establishment would rather loose to a Republican than win a seat with a progressive. They are undermining the progressive sentiment in the country at every opportunity. Mainstream media is silent about it.

@ARE_you_kidding_me When was the last time you saw a serious interview with someone who was a full-blown socialist that wanted 0 private industry and complete equality of condition interviewed on TV?

rojo's avatar

@ARE_you_kidding_me Gotta disagree with you here and agree with gorillapaws. The majority of the media are conservative in their expressed views and what they choose to highlight. Fox only makes them look liberal.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

I’m so in disagreement here. As a conservative and a moderate one at that the media clearly skews left and it’s comically obvious. I can’t even imagine anyone arguing otherwise, so much so that it’s baffling for me to even attempt to argue otherwise. You have to be pretty far on the extreme left to think the media is “conservative.”

rockfan's avatar

The media doesn’t skew left, it skews Democrat, there’s a huge difference. CNN defends establishment democrats, while Fox News defends establishment republicans. And by the way, CNN has fired progressive/liberal commentators who favor Bernie and criticize Obama and Hillary.

rockfan's avatar

@ARE you kidding me

Do you consider Bernie supporters to be a part of the “extreme left”?

JLeslie's avatar

@rockfan Skewing Democrat is skewing left. Maybe the outlets do something about hosts skewing very obviously to the extreme left, but there is still an obvious left lean on stations like MSNBC. I haven’t watched CNN in a long time so I can’t comment on that.

I understand that part of the left lean is a reaction to Trump. Or, in fact some of these people are still Republicans or Independents, who don’t like Trump, and so that comes across right now as being anti-Republican. Thing is, I want to know what the republicans are thinking and saying, and I don’t want to have to tune into Fox News for three hours to do it. It was nice having it all in one place.

Watch Morning Joe, he literally tells politicians and people in the administration what they should do. They aren’t giving equal time anymore.

I don’t think it matters what is left of right in other countries for this Q, but I do think if things were really more balanced on TV there would be representation for even the more progressive like Bernie, and moderate to more extreme conservatives. I don’t mean they have to put on a crazy zealot who is hateful and reinforcing dangerous, racist, and violent behaviors. That’s a different thing.

notnotnotnot's avatar

@JLeslie – I’m unclear what you are referring to when you say “left”, but I think it may help to view a model that is better than the left/right one. There are many, but the political compass is a pretty good one. It uses a an axis for economic and one for social.

For example, here is where the candidates in the US 2016 general election fall. And here is where the 2016 primary candidates were.

JLeslie's avatar

^^You are making it more complicated than necessary. We basically know where Democrats and Republicans fall on issues. Democrats are pro-choice, pro same sex marriage, pro gays in the military, pro socialized healthcare, etc etc. Right no Democrats (as a party) are very Anti-Trump. the people might identify with one party, but have some issues where they don’t completely line up.

gorillapaws's avatar

@JLeslie “Skewing Democrat is skewing left.”

The current establishment Democrats are RIGHT of where the Republicans were in the 90’s. Obamacare is basically the REPUBLICAN plan dreamed up by the Heritage foundation in the 90’s. Democrats are supporting the PRIVATE prison industry, payday lenders, not a fucking peep about the DACA pipeline from anyone until it didn’t matter and there was no political cost to pay to oppose it, the most obscene military spending in the history of the world, Dems in California just trashed the Net Neutrality bill and tabled a Medicare-for-all bill despite having full control in the state, they made Bush’s tax cuts permanent, voted to deregulate the banks, unquestioning support for Israel as they commit war crimes, the list goes on…

Trump is actually to the LEFT of Clinton on some issues such as trade.

We’re left choosing between moderate right and radical right policies. Bernie Sanders would be considered very moderate in many European countries. He’s only slightly left of center. Let’s keep things in proper perspective. The reason a center-left politician like Bernie is considered such a radical is because there is NEVER coverage of anyone left of him in the media. If you heard from truly extreme leftists as often as we hear from truly extreme right wingers, people would realize that politicians like Sanders are fairly moderate in their views.

JLeslie's avatar

@gorillapaws I’ll agree it has to do with left relative to the right we see in what is reported in the media.

Can we also agree that these “news” outlets aren’t showing the whole political spectrum equally? I don’t expect it to be perfectly equal actually, but some attempt to show some more representation from all sides would be nice.

It’s getting more and more narrow the coverage, we are moving in the wrong direction. Some people on this thread are perfectly ok with that. With only reporting or allowing things they want to hear.

rojo's avatar

@ARE_you_kidding_me I am more moderate than you therefore you are on the conservative end of the spectrum. I am firmly in the center. On a 0 – 10 scale, you probably fall about 7.5.

In fact, all of you can use me as the fulcrum on which to weigh your particular leanings.

rojo's avatar

When we look at Reagan and realize that he would not stand a chance of being an acceptable conservative candidate in this day and age it is easy to visualize the shift to the right that our politicians have taken. It is only those who remember the Reagan years and earlier that can have the perspective necessary to observe the changes that have occurred.

rojo's avatar

I think that what it has come down to in this day and age is that anyone who agrees with Trump is considered conservative and anyone who disagrees is considered liberal. The more you disagree, the further left you are. The more you agree and think he should go even further then the more conservative you are considered.

JLeslie's avatar

@rojo I think Reagan would still have a chance. He was the beginning of the end of Surgeon General Coop, because Reagan wasn’t very concerned about a gay man’s disease, and wasn’t going to talk about sex related topics with US, he studied Coop however he could. He asked Coop to lie about the risks related to abortion, and Coop wouldn’t. The Reagans were against things like stem cell research until it was something that might cure what Ronald was afflicted with. He destroyed some unions. He let the deficit creep up and up. He drummed out (he supposedly gets a lot of the credit) communism in Russia. He did all sorts of things the right liked, except the deficit I guess, but they didn’t care back then, they bought into his rationale for it.

The majority of my religious friends in the Bible Belt voted for Ted Cruz in the primary.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

@rojo If you think the media skews right then I would not say you are centered, at least not in the states.

gorillapaws's avatar

@ARE_you_kidding_me Did you look at the link of the political compass that @notnotnotnot posted?

“at least not in the states.”

What does this mean? The political compass is an objective global standard of left vs.right. Are you saying that the rules are different in the USA? That would be like saying 3 < 2 in Kentucky, or the speed of light works differently in Texas.

If you’re going to re-define the moderate-right as being extreme left, then sure the media is extreme left, but that really makes no sense, you’re just playing semantic games by misusing terminology.

rojo's avatar

^^ I think it is more likely a difference of perspective or of a fixed standard from which to view things.

rockfan's avatar

@ARE you kidding me

We may disagree on a few things politically, but you have to agree that network news skews establishment, not progressive.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

@gorillapaws I have known about that political compass since at least 2003. I have taken it many times and I believe strongly that… it’s just an online quiz and not some gold standard of political measure When I take it I’m way down on the libertarian scale and dead center.
And what the hell does “progressive” even mean. Network news is almost entirely focused on the democratic party and its goals and does anything it can to work against the republican parties goals with a few notable exceptions. In the states the colloquial sense of “left” and “right” people are referring to the parties. This is not mystical knowledge.

Aster's avatar

I like to watch CNN and Fox News.

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