Monday, November 01, 2004

The Rhetorical Rubberman: Mark Hyman

In his latest commentary, Hyman shows himself capable of contortions that would make a Hindu fakir envious.

Once again, Hyman delivers a commentary focusing on Sinclair’s decision to run a propaganda piece as a “news” item, but manages to do so without mentioning Sinclair Broadcasting by name, let alone revealing that he is a corporate vice president of the company in question.

We’re just wondering, Mark: did it slip your mind to mention this little fact, or was it a simple lack of journalistic ethics?

Most news organizations, when running stories or doing commentary about issues in which they are even indirectly involved as players, feel obligated to mention this connection so that their viewers are aware of any possible bias. Not at Sinclair, however. Mark would have you believe that he’s just commenting on some poor Vietnam vets who have been savagely silenced by “the Angry Left.” He quotes liberally (pardon the pun) from a number of letters, all of which are supportive of the decision to run “Stolen Honor,” and are only upset because the propaganda piece wasn’t shown in its entirety. The letters included a viewer who vowed allegiance with Hyman in “our culture war.” And it’s the left that’s dividing America, Mark?

And despite his claims that a majority of the letters were from supporters of the decision to air the film (and those opposed were mostly from “extremist” groups like, Hyman fails to mention that Sinclair’s own chief political correspondent called the decision political (and got fired for saying so), that advertisers across the nation pulled their ads from Sinclair stations, that more than 100,000 names were included on a petition protesting the move, and that Sinclair stock nosedived when their plans were made public.

Gosh, I wonder why Mark forgot to mention this? Oh yeah: it would have involved saying “Sinclair” on the air.

And by the way: with all due respect to Rich in West Allis, WI, we don’t need to see that appalling rictus that passes for your smile; the smug smirk is plenty, thank you.

And that’s The Counterpoint.


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