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REPORTERS AND ACTORS ARE OVERWHELMINGLY LIBERAL | 2002-11-02

Everybody thinks his biases are really just objective truth. I have heard reporters say that they are liberals because they see oppression and real life so much. It is hard to imagine a more superficial comment.

We all think we have a special handle on real life, but only a really naïve person can BELIEVE that. This is not exactly a new idea. Socrates talked about how all men perceive reality the way a blind man perceives an elephant. One blind man feels a trunk, another thinks an elephant is all huge legs, and so forth.

But reporters regularly tell each other, in public, that they have the only realistic view of life.

And nobody laughs.

I very much doubt this was a new idea when Socrates talked about it. You really have to be naïve to think you have a special handle on reality.

When I was in college, it was an accepted rule that all freshmen are socialists, but most grow out of it. Like most such comments, it as an overstatement of a general truth.

Most freshmen of average intelligence have left home for the first time, and when their professors tell them that professors should rule the world they believe it. I never took the idea seriously that if government owned the whole economy and bureaucrats ran every aspect of production and distribution, it would lead to fairness and efficiency.

Socialism is silly. But professors naturally say that "intellectuals" like themselves should plan and dictate who makes what and who gets what. Only the mind of a not-too-bright freshman, new to the academic world, could take that seriously.

Reporters and actors are mostly people who remain not-too-bright freshmen. A reporter, after all, is someone who devotes his life to getting an item five minutes before the rest of the world gets it. If the item is a scandal in Hollywood, he is gossip columnist. If the news item is a congressional scandal, the reporter who gets it first is a professional journalist.

It is not surprising that a lot of superficial people would make the pursuit of hot items a life's work.

So when a group of "journalists" get together and one says they have a special handle on life and that is the reason they have their political views, nobody laughs. A bunch of none-too-intelligent freshmen would sit around and tell each other how deep and unique their or their professor's insight is. So would an actor.

But everybody else would laugh at such naiveté, all the way back to Socrates.