False balance 1

McSlaggart

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The general public do not have time or inclination to research most media topics themselves. When faced with hard choices they tend to opt for the one that is most appealing. This is most apparent when an interview takes place over climate change 2 and both the proponents and those who wish to spread uncertainty are given equal time.


Is their a way that we can adjust how issues are dealt with such that it gives a better balance of the facts to the general public than the way that the media currently deal with such issues? This is some of the non facts that Nigel Farage got away with during the UK debate on the EU.


" The EU is unelected

In his speech, Farage accused the European Commission of being the sole arbiter of legislation in the European Union. He's got form on this, a lot of it. In reality the Commission takes it priorities from elected member state governments (the Council) and performs a role more akin to the British civil service. The third institution, the European Parliament, is made up of directly elected MEPs. Farage should know this by now, he's been one for over 10 years.

The majority of our laws are made by the EU

Farage and his ilk have been getting away with this one for too long. He claims that 70% of the laws in the UK are made by the EU. The real number is difficult to quantify, but the independent House of Commons library put it at just 13.2%.

The EU costs Britain £55million a day

Every time I hear this I'm immediately transported back to the referendum campaign and it makes me want to put my head through a wall. Let's be clear, the EU does not cost £55million every day. This is double the real number and does not account for the benefits we get back. And before you ask, no, £350million extra a week will not be given to the NHS when we leave. Nigel Farage and every other leading figure who backed leave distanced themselves the morning after the vote."

Does Nigel Farage Tell Lies? Yes, Here's Five Of Them


1
"False balance is a media bias in which journalists present an issue as being more balanced between opposing viewpoints than the evidence supports. Journalists may present evidence and arguments out of proportion to the actual evidence for each side, or may omit information that would establish one side's claims as baseless."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/False_balance

2

"Proponents of climate change science have described campaigns to undermine public trust in climate science as the product of a "denial machine" of industrial, political and ideological interests, supported by conservative media and skeptical bloggers in manufacturing uncertainty about global warming."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Climate_change_denial
 


Dame_Enda

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Farage and his ilk have been getting away with this one for too long. He claims that 70% of the laws in the UK are made by the EU. The real number is difficult to quantify, but the independent House of Commons library put it at just 13.2%.
It depends how you define "law". If you define it merely as directives or regulations. And then it comes down to whether you think the transposing of EU directives into national law through UK parliamentary votes constitutes the EU making law or national governments making law. Also EU "regulations" differ from EU Directives in that regulations come into force automatically without a vote in national parliaments. It is relevant that the unelected Commission - like the king of France in 1814-30 - is the only body that has the right to initiate legislation.

The democratic deficit is not insurmountable - the problem is that the EU and it's member states have proved unwilling to use mechanisms already present in the Treaties such as Enhanced Cooperation and the objection rights of national parliaments to remedy the democratic deficit. The endemic corruption in the European Parliament - where the register of MEPs interests is only voluntary - is another problem. The EU budget hasn't been signed off for over 20 years.
 
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Notachipanoaktree

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The general public do not have time or inclination to research most media topics themselves. When faced with hard choices they tend to opt for the one that is most appealing. This is most apparent when an interview takes place over climate change 2 and both the proponents and those who wish to spread uncertainty are given equal time.


Is their a way that we can adjust how issues are dealt with such that it gives a better balance of the facts to the general public than the way that the media currently deal with such issues? This is some of the non facts that Nigel Farage got away with during the UK debate on the EU.


" The EU is unelected

In his speech, Farage accused the European Commission of being the sole arbiter of legislation in the European Union. He's got form on this, a lot of it. In reality the Commission takes it priorities from elected member state governments (the Council) and performs a role more akin to the British civil service. The third institution, the European Parliament, is made up of directly elected MEPs. Farage should know this by now, he's been one for over 10 years.

The majority of our laws are made by the EU

Farage and his ilk have been getting away with this one for too long. He claims that 70% of the laws in the UK are made by the EU. The real number is difficult to quantify, but the independent House of Commons library put it at just 13.2%.

The EU costs Britain £55million a day

Every time I hear this I'm immediately transported back to the referendum campaign and it makes me want to put my head through a wall. Let's be clear, the EU does not cost £55million every day. This is double the real number and does not account for the benefits we get back. And before you ask, no, £350million extra a week will not be given to the NHS when we leave. Nigel Farage and every other leading figure who backed leave distanced themselves the morning after the vote."

Does Nigel Farage Tell Lies? Yes, Here's Five Of Them


1
"False balance is a media bias in which journalists present an issue as being more balanced between opposing viewpoints than the evidence supports. Journalists may present evidence and arguments out of proportion to the actual evidence for each side, or may omit information that would establish one side's claims as baseless."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/False_balance

2

"Proponents of climate change science have described campaigns to undermine public trust in climate science as the product of a "denial machine" of industrial, political and ideological interests, supported by conservative media and skeptical bloggers in manufacturing uncertainty about global warming."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Climate_change_denial
Oh Yeah! Educate yourselves Dumbasses. MS,Dl,Ho

Oh that the world were so simple. Well! clearly yours is.

[video=youtube;WHj2GaPuEhY]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WHj2GaPuEhY[/video]

Dec. 5, 1997
 
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gleeful

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Big problem with the media is its made up of people who are, in the majority, not that bright.
 

firefly123

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Big problem with the media is its made up of people who are, in the majority, not that bright.
The big problem is the world is made up of people who are, in the majority, not that bright.
People latch on to conspiracies because it makes them feel brighter than their peers.
 

RasherHash

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The general public do not have time or inclination to research most media topics themselves. When faced with hard choices they tend to opt for the one that is most appealing. This is most apparent when an interview takes place over climate change 2 and both the proponents and those who wish to spread uncertainty are given equal time.


Is their a way that we can adjust how issues are dealt with such that it gives a better balance of the facts to the general public than the way that the media currently deal with such issues? This is some of the non facts that Nigel Farage got away with during the UK debate on the EU.


" The EU is unelected

In his speech, Farage accused the European Commission of being the sole arbiter of legislation in the European Union. He's got form on this, a lot of it. In reality the Commission takes it priorities from elected member state governments (the Council) and performs a role more akin to the British civil service. The third institution, the European Parliament, is made up of directly elected MEPs. Farage should know this by now, he's been one for over 10 years.

The majority of our laws are made by the EU

Farage and his ilk have been getting away with this one for too long. He claims that 70% of the laws in the UK are made by the EU. The real number is difficult to quantify, but the independent House of Commons library put it at just 13.2%.

The EU costs Britain £55million a day

Every time I hear this I'm immediately transported back to the referendum campaign and it makes me want to put my head through a wall. Let's be clear, the EU does not cost £55million every day. This is double the real number and does not account for the benefits we get back. And before you ask, no, £350million extra a week will not be given to the NHS when we leave. Nigel Farage and every other leading figure who backed leave distanced themselves the morning after the vote."

Does Nigel Farage Tell Lies? Yes, Here's Five Of Them


1
"False balance is a media bias in which journalists present an issue as being more balanced between opposing viewpoints than the evidence supports. Journalists may present evidence and arguments out of proportion to the actual evidence for each side, or may omit information that would establish one side's claims as baseless."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/False_balance

2

"Proponents of climate change science have described campaigns to undermine public trust in climate science as the product of a "denial machine" of industrial, political and ideological interests, supported by conservative media and skeptical bloggers in manufacturing uncertainty about global warming."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Climate_change_denial
I think you have to add to that the fact that governments and politicians do lie, all the time and people are therefore rightly sceptical that the highly paid political class do things in the interests of the people rather than themselves. They are right to be sceptical and to watch politicians like a hawk.

The sovereignty issue is still of major importance to people, the fact that we can vote for our government and get rid of them when they are exposed as corrupt is of vital importance. The idea that someone who we do not vote for decides major policy changes etc is not at all appealing.

Also the the EU elite are intent on moving the union towards a USE and this is no great surprise to anyone and is not what the majority of people in Europe see as desirable.
 

RasherHash

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The big problem is the world is made up of people who are, in the majority, not that bright.
People latch on to conspiracies because it makes them feel brighter than their peers.
I'd say people latch on to conspiracies because they feel they are so far from the reigns of control and are (rightly) suspicious of those in power.

They have been proved many, many times to be right to be suspicious because there have been so many cases of proven corruption.

Also the states have many secret agencies, secrets and things they hide for decades* in order that ordinary people don't find out the levels of corruption and depths of depravity of the ruling elite.

*Only Yesterday the files from the assassination of Kennedy were released after 54 years.
 

gleeful

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The big problem is the world is made up of people who are, in the majority, not that bright.
People latch on to conspiracies because it makes them feel brighter than their peers.
There are plenty of conspiracies. The organisation behind Brexit - the newspapers, billionaires, Farage, etc - is a conpiracy.
 

Deadlock

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I think you have to add to that the fact that governments and politicians do lie, all the time and people are therefore rightly sceptical that the highly paid political class do things in the interests of the people rather than themselves. They are right to be sceptical and to watch politicians like a hawk.

The sovereignty issue is still of major importance to people, the fact that we can vote for our government and get rid of them when they are exposed as corrupt is of vital importance. The idea that someone who we do not vote for decides major policy changes etc is not at all appealing.

Also the the EU elite are intent on moving the union towards a USE and this is no great surprise to anyone and is not what the majority of people in Europe see as desirable.
I have two issues with what you say here. The first is that there are mechanisms to assure democratic control of the activities of the European institutions. The proroguing of the Sanger Commission by the European Parliament is a case in point. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Santer_Commission
We, the people elect Parliament. It is our voice to the EU institutions.

Secondly, I think the undefined nature of a United States of Europe provokes more concern than the notion. If and when this nature is properly defined so people know what is proposed, that will assuage many concerns.
 

RasherHash

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I have two issues with what you say here. The first is that there are mechanisms to assure democratic control of the activities of the European institutions. The proroguing of the Sanger Commission by the European Parliament is a case in point. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Santer_Commission
We, the people elect Parliament. It is our voice to the EU institutions.

Secondly, I think the undefined nature of a United States of Europe provokes more concern than the notion. If and when this nature is properly defined so people know what is proposed, that will assuage many concerns.
I don't think so, I think there is a large democratic deficit and there seems no willingness to address it among the elite.

Our sovereignty has been watered down by the EU until we are a mere small branch of the democratic unit and therefore our policies will be decided by Germany, France etc.

I prefer the original model were we had full sovereignty within an economic union. The notion that we are subject to the policies of NATO/former imperialist countries who retain their ability and willingness to interfere in Africa etc is of concern.

It's not just that the nature of the USE is undefined, it is that it is not discussed as the real prospect that it is and that many in the elite want it to be. In past elections here that were designed to move us towards a USE the local pro-EU politicians scoffed at the idea and pretended it was not part of the agenda, when it definitely is.

The whole effort SEA, Nice, Lisbon etc is designed to move us into a USE without explicitly saying to people 'this is what we, the elite, are intending to do'. Not talking about what their real intentions are is part and parcel of the democratic deficit.
 
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Maximus Cynicus

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The big problem is the world is made up of people who are, in the majority, not that bright.
People latch on to conspiracies because it makes them feel brighter than their peers.
Statistically, half of people are above average and half are below average. It doesn’t matter what you are talking about - height, weight, etc. This also relates to intelligence. I remember saying this to a priest one day and his response was “That’s most unkind”. Maybe “unkind” but not untrue!

The commentariat know this and can easily stoke up a frenzy with the great unwashed. People are too busy (or not a*sed) to be able to check any statements - realistically isn’t that what WORKING journalists are supposed to do? Except that documents can be “sexed” up to an incredible degree and a lazy/complicit press won’t question it.

By definition, half of journalists are also of below average intelligence. Many are in the “meeja” not because of some Bernstein/Woodward drive but because they want their faces and opinions out there. (How many bylines are there nowadays WITHOUT an accompanying picture?). How many op-ed pieces have you read and thought Jaysus you should really stick to commenting on rugby?
 

McSlaggart

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The democratic deficit is not insurmountable - the problem is that the EU and it's member states have proved unwilling to use mechanisms already present in the Treaties such as Enhanced Cooperation and the objection rights of national parliaments to remedy the democratic deficit. The endemic corruption in the European Parliament - where the register of MEPs interests is only voluntary - is another problem. The EU budget hasn't been signed off for over 20 years.
I do not know all the facts of these issues but it does strike me that the EU is imperfect with a lot of things that can be improved. That said we are better for its existence than if we had to create it from scratch.
 

Deadlock

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It depends how you define "law". If you define it merely as directives or regulations. And then it comes down to whether you think the transposing of EU directives into national law through UK parliamentary votes constitutes the EU making law or national governments making law. Also EU "regulations" differ from EU Directives in that regulations come into force automatically without a vote in national parliaments. It is relevant that the unelected Commission - like the king of France in 1814-30 - is the only body that has the right to initiate legislation.

The democratic deficit is not insurmountable - the problem is that the EU and it's member states have proved unwilling to use mechanisms already present in the Treaties such as Enhanced Cooperation and the objection rights of national parliaments to remedy the democratic deficit. The endemic corruption in the European Parliament - where the register of MEPs interests is only voluntary - is another problem. The EU budget hasn't been signed off for over 20 years.
I don't think so, I think there is a large democratic deficit and there seems no willingness to address it among the elite.

Our sovereignty has been watered down by the EU until we are a mere small branch of the democratic unit and therefore our policies will be decided by Germany, France etc.

I prefer the original model were we had full sovereignty within an economic union. The notion that we are subject to the policies of NATO/former imperialist countries who retain their ability and willingness to interfere in Africa etc is of concern.

It's not just that the nature of the USE is undefined, it is that it is not discussed as the real prospect that it is and that many in the elite want it to be. In past elections here that were designed to move us towards a USE the local pro-EU politicians scoffed at the idea and pretended it was not part of the agenda, when it definitely is.

The whole effort SEA, Nice, Lisbon etc is designed to move us into a USE without explicitly saying to people 'this is what we, the elite, are intending to do'. Not talking about what their real intentions are is part and parcel of the democratic deficit.
I do not know all the facts of these issues but it does strike me that the EU is imperfect with a lot of things that can be improved. That said we are better for its existence than if we had to create it from scratch.
To ameliorate the democratic deficit - and democratic deficits are an inherent issue in all forms of representative democracy - I think it will be necessary to break the current link between national and EU politics with Europarties. Europarties are confined to the EU parliament and act only on European issues. National parties are confined to national legislatures. Where there is incidence of policy overlap between Europarties and national political parties - take Green-ecology parties for example - there should be no issue with joint campaigning. However, national parties and Europarties ought to be both organisationally and politically distinct. Hence voters see difference and will react more readily to it.

A second, perhaps complementary measure, is to utterly ignore the existence of member states, and reorganise constituencies, and voting systems across the Union on a uniform basis for EU politics.


The map (preBrexit!) shows 28 rather equally sized constituencies on a population basis in a Union of 28. This would further break links between national politics and EU politics - requiring in some instances voter and policy across international lines (Ireland/Scotland/Brittany/Wales or Sweden/Denmark/Netherland) and in others a greater focus on subnational issues (England/Italy/Germany).

The EU is far from perfect. At it's heart is a heady and sometimes unhealthy mix of intergovernmental/consensual/confederal/federal/unitary state models of operation. This has evolved in response to specific evolutionary pressures, and a great many of these have their genesis in the general population. It's my belief that the population ought to better articulate the choices it wants, and that political parties unique to EU governance responding to those choices will address that articulation issue.

What If The EU Had 28 Member States With Equal Populations? - Brilliant Maps

Finally, for interesting comparison, when the US states are projected on the territory of the EU in terms of areas of equal populations.




https://www.reddit.com/r/MapPorn/comments/5u9292/us_states_overlaid_on_areas_of_europe_with_equal/
 

RasherHash

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To ameliorate the democratic deficit - and democratic deficits are an inherent issue in all forms of representative democracy - I think it will be necessary to break the current link between national and EU politics with Europarties. Europarties are confined to the EU parliament and act only on European issues. National parties are confined to national legislatures. Where there is incidence of policy overlap between Europarties and national political parties - take Green-ecology parties for example - there should be no issue with joint campaigning. However, national parties and Europarties ought to be both organisationally and politically distinct. Hence voters see difference and will react more readily to it.

A second, perhaps complementary measure, is to utterly ignore the existence of member states, and reorganise constituencies, and voting systems across the Union on a uniform basis for EU politics.


The map (preBrexit!) shows 28 rather equally sized constituencies on a population basis in a Union of 28. This would further break links between national politics and EU politics - requiring in some instances voter and policy across international lines (Ireland/Scotland/Brittany/Wales or Sweden/Denmark/Netherland) and in others a greater focus on subnational issues (England/Italy/Germany).

The EU is far from perfect. At it's heart is a heady and sometimes unhealthy mix of intergovernmental/consensual/confederal/federal/unitary state models of operation. This has evolved in response to specific evolutionary pressures, and a great many of these have their genesis in the general population. It's my belief that the population ought to better articulate the choices it wants, and that political parties unique to EU governance responding to those choices will address that articulation issue.

What If The EU Had 28 Member States With Equal Populations? - Brilliant Maps

Finally, for interesting comparison, when the US states are projected on the territory of the EU in terms of areas of equal populations.




https://www.reddit.com/r/MapPorn/comments/5u9292/us_states_overlaid_on_areas_of_europe_with_equal/
The 28 equally sized constituencies is an interesting idea but it's hard to know how it would work even if it were acceptable.

Suffice it to say we are a long way from that happening so we have to deal with the current facts.
 

Deadlock

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The 28 equally sized constituencies is an interesting idea but it's hard to know how it would work even if it were acceptable.

Suffice it to say we are a long way from that happening so we have to deal with the current facts.
In that spirit, I note with interest that your reply to my post focuses more on the latter element, and not the former. Surely that is a more expedient alternative that would deliver immediate dividends in improving the democratic deficit?
 

Gin Soaked

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The 28 equally sized constituencies is an interesting idea but it's hard to know how it would work even if it were acceptable.

Suffice it to say we are a long way from that happening so we have to deal with the current facts.
An interesting facet of the constituency map is how disjointed some of the region's are, in particular the Celtic union's inclusion of Brittany is a stretch.

It would be interesting to see the GDP per capita of these constituencies too. A big gripe in the EU and also the real root behind Catalonia's mess is rich paying for poor. And I can't see a cartographic remedy for that.

Either you accept distribution of wealth or you don't. If you are in the latter camp, you better build some strong defences..
 

Deadlock

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An interesting facet of the constituency map is how disjointed some of the region's are, in particular the Celtic union's inclusion of Brittany is a stretch.

It would be interesting to see the GDP per capita of these constituencies too. A big gripe in the EU and also the real root behind Catalonia's mess is rich paying for poor. And I can't see a cartographic remedy for that.

Either you accept distribution of wealth or you don't. If you are in the latter camp, you better build some strong defences..
The map is simply one way to divide the 28 current Member states into areas of more or less equal populations.

As you say the transfer of wealth from one region to another is always contentious. Not just for Catalonia, but also for the SE of England and much of the rest of the UK, and indeed increasingly between the East coast of Ireland and the rest of the Republic. There are no convenient cartographic solutions in those cases either.
 
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ireallyshouldknowbetter

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I love the fact that the OP has a footnote right in the title almost as much as I love the fact that he didn't bother formatting it to look like a footnote.
 


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