Friday, January 27, 2017

What Happens to Democracy When the Experts Can't Be Both Factual and Balanced?

Yesterday Stephen Bannon, one of Trump's closest advisors, called the media "the opposition party". My op-ed piece in today's Los Angeles Times is my response to that type of thinking.

What Happens to Democracy When the Experts Can't Be Both Factual and Balanced?

Does democracy require journalists and educators to strive for political balance? I’m hardly alone in thinking the answer is "yes." But it also requires them to present the facts as they understand them — and when it is not possible to be factual and balanced at the same time, democratic institutions risk collapse.

Consider the problem abstractly. Democracy X is dominated by two parties, Y and Z. Party Y is committed to the truth of propositions A, B and C, while Party Z is committed to the falsity of A, B and C. Slowly the evidence mounts: A, B and C look very likely to be false. Observers in the media and experts in the education system begin to see this, but the evidence isn’t quite plain enough for non-experts, especially if those non-experts are aligned with Party Y and already committed to A, B and C....

[continued here]

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Internet and Soul searching reveals some of us are afraid The United States of America is becoming a "Flawed democracy"...
...Different from our Founding hope The United States of America could become a "Full democracy"...Hope springs Eternal and every two years Vote...