In support of most of what was already said, I have a pithy little saying that I try to internalize and live by:
Just because you DO believe it doesn’t mean it IS true. Just because you DON’T believe it doesn’t mean it’s NOT true.
I also try to consume news from as wide a variety of sources as possible. It’s easy to recognize the ‘spin’ coming from the other side. It takes a lot of work to learn to recognize the spin that your side puts out, too.
As my sainted mother once said, “The older I get, the more I realize just how much we’re all being manipulated.”
According to a follow-up survey by Fairleigh Dickinson University’s PublicMind, NPR and Sunday morning political talk shows are the most informative news outlets, while exposure to partisan sources, such as Fox News and MSNBC, has a negative impact on people’s current events knowledge.
“A negative impact” means that people who watched the partisan sources actually had less correct current event information than those who didn’t watch the news at all.
Think about that.
We expect that watching the news should help people learn, but the most popular of the national media sources – Fox, CNN, MSNBC – seem to be the least informative.
It’s hard to tease out how much is cause and how much is effect, but … as I used to say quite often … it’s best to get your news the way you should be getting your nutrition: from as wide a variety of sources as possible and from as close to the source (ie, with as little processing) as possible.