CBS and ABC Falsely Describe Medicare Spending Hike as a Cut

Wednesday's Example of Media Bias   —   Posted on February 13, 2008

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Read the excerpt below (from Brent Baker's Feb. 4 post at NewsBusters.org).   Read "Types of Media Bias" in the right column. Then answer the questions.

from the NewsBusters.org post:
President Bush’s fiscal 2009 budget proposal calls for a 7.5 percent hike in Defense spending and a 5 percent jump in spending for Medicare and Medicaid, but while CBS anchor Katie Couric on Monday night correctly stated that Pentagon spending would “in the Bush plan, she erroneously asserted “spending on Medicare and Medicaid would go down.” Similarly, while ABC’s Martha Raddatz cited the call for an “increase” in DOD’s budget, she falsely reported: “Medicare and Medicaid would be cut by almost $200 billion.”
Go to NewsBusters.com for the original posting.

On FNC’s Special Report with Brit Hume, reporter James Rosen scolded the sloppy reporting of his journalistic colleagues, specifically how “the New York Times’ lead article on the subject referred matter of factly to the ‘trimming’ of Medicare and Medicaid. In fact, Medicare will continue to see its budget grow, by 5 percent instead of 7.2 percent.”……………..

 

Questions

What type of bias is the excerpt below an example of? 


Scroll down to the bottom of the page for the answers.
























Answer(s)

The excerpt is an example of bias by SPIN – the media outlets cited are causing the viewers/readers to believe something that is not true – that President Bush is actually cutting the amount of money in the budget for Medicare and Medicaid.  Instead, the amount by which it will increase this year is not as much as it increased last year. 
(Think about this: if you were earning $7.00/hour in an after school job and your boss increased your salary to $7.50 the following year, and then to $7.65 the next year, is it right to say that you’ve had a cut in salary because your increase was not as large as the previous increase?)