20081118

The talk show unfairness doctrine.

Bruce Murphy throws rhetorical punches at Sykes in his recent posting on MilwaukeeMagazine.com.

Sykes doesn’t directly address or deny that conservative talk radio hosts
(1) perpetuate the notion that listeners are victims and the host is the vehicle by which they are empowered;
(2) use an us-versus-them approach that regularly targets Democrats, “Republicans in Name Only” and the mainstream media;
(3) refuse to do an even-handed discussion of issues;
(4) belittle callers when the argument can’t be won on the merits;
(5) strategically find occasions to disagree with the Republican leaders or conservative doctrine to give the impression of being an independent thinker;
(6) won’t risk their credibility by backing a Republican candidate who has no chance of winning;
(7) rely on the “you know what would happen if this was a liberal” line of attack;
(8) use the “pre-emptive strike” to immediately accuse the media of overplaying a budding news story that might make conservatives look bad;
(9) selectively use facts to support their position and ignore any that don’t; (10) pound away on an issue, hour after hour, day after day, to motivate listeners to contact their public officials in support of a particular policy;
(11) use a double standard on such issues as the line-item veto, perjury and activist judges (all three are great if they help Republicans or conservatives, but bad if used in support of Democrats).

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