Media Plays It Dumb in Shutdown

Blaming both sides isn't accurate news

"Reality," Stephen Colbert once said, "has a well-known liberal bias." He was joking--or "joking"--but he identified a serious problem for political reporters in a polarized era. What do you do when the actual reality of a news story is not balanced between two sides? What do you do when the facts of a situation are such that to describe them accurately will make you sound biased?

This month's fiscal crisis is one such situation. One party (in fact, one wing of the Republican Party), seeking the elimination or delay of Obamacare, precipitated a government shutdown and threatened a default on U.S....

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