Thursday, June 26, 2008

Giving credit where credit is not due, or CNN's dumbed-down reporting.

From's coverage of today's DC vs Heller ruling:

The National Rifle Association said the high court had given it the ammunition to challenge other cities' gun-control measures.

After the ruling, Wayne LaPierre of the NRA said his organization would immediately file court challenges to the bans in Chicago and San Francisco.

This might lead the casual reader to think that the NRA brought the Parker challenge (which metamorphosed to Heller). On the contrary, up until the time the case was granted cert, they fought to derail the effort, fearing a bad ruling.

But what can we expect; CNN and many other lowbrow outlets don't deal well with cases that violate the rules. The rules are:

  1. There are legitimately two sides to every issue.
  2. There are none but two sides to every issue.
  3. Each of these sides is a solid camp, with a leader or a leading organization.
  4. The opinion of the leader or leading organization is an accurate and thorough summary of the views of the camp.
  5. A reporter must thus seek "quotes" from two sources: a representative of the leadership of the one camp, and a representative of the leadership of the other.

This is false balance's dual, and it's equally obnoxious. How sloppy, to not so much as mention the Cato Institute or Bob Levy in a standard news piece on Heller!

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