Regarding an email posted on the Jerry Pournelle site, viz Mail 301 of March 15-21 2004

Dear Dr. Pournelle:

Contributors to your salon often cite British newspaper reports, sometimes for what seems to be outrageously biased reporting. I'd like to make note about a difference between US newspapers and British newspapers for readers who may not be aware.

British newspapers make no attempt at unbiased reporting. The reporting by these papers is based on the newspaper's political stance. The liberal papers can read like union newsletters while the conservative papers report the news like US right-wing talk radio. There are also a few middle-of-the-road papers that are closer to the kind of reporting we see published in the US. Your readers should consider the source before allowing their blood pressure to spike. It would be like a Londoner outraged at reporting on the UK by the NY Post.

Their bias can be shocking to those of us in the US who are used to papers where the bias is more subtle. I advise folks in the Chaos Manor forum to keep this in mind before becoming too outraged at how British papers report on US actions.

Based on personal anecdotal evidence from my experience as a reporter/writer on several newspapers, magazines, and professional journalism associations, if you're not way left of center, you're usually considered to be a jackbooted thug willing to pillage the world for mega-corporations. Mention that you favor nuclear power and you're thought of as someone who would feed plutonium to under-privileged infants.

Pete Nofel

Whence my comments:

Inane letter to Jerry Pournelle's email pages, of which statements I offer these points.
What? Unbiased reporting? Of course not, it's impossible. Each and every newspaper on earth has a viewpoint, which is why one reads them. Not only that, but how on earth could editorials be written if there was pure neutrality. It's not as though the complete facts are ever really known in any case.
Historically, amongst a pile of other periodicals, I have read the Guardian, Times (of London), Telegraph, Spectator, Economist, New Yorker, New York Times, Washington Post, Le Monde, Frankfurter Allgemeine, Christian Science Monitor, and local papers wherever I was living.
That did not make me unknowingly critical of certain Americans: their actions did. The same way that the actions of my own nation disgust me, even though I know there are many that are innocent and law abiding everywhere. (Northern Ireland, if you must know.)
Obvious bias opposed to subtle bias? So, it is better to be misled because the bias is not obvious? What is worse, pray?
The final Nofel paragraph is silliness in print.