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CLUELESS CBS Hosts Lecture Voters on ‘Bias Blind Spot’



On Friday’s CBS This Morning, co-host Tony Dokoupil, who once tried to sell socialism to shoppers with a pie demonstration, and fellow co-host Gayle King, a Democratic donor known to vacation with the Obamas, decided that they were qualified to lecture American voters on how to avoid a “bias blind spot” in their political thinking.

“This morning, through a very unique test of partisanship, we are finding out that Democrats and Republicans are not just deeply divided on the facts, they may literally be seeing two completely different worlds,” Dokoupil decried at the top of the 7:30 a.m. ET half hour segment. He further fretted that “a growing number of researchers are coming around to the idea that politics actually alters people’s perceptions.”

 

 

In order to “put that idea to the test,” Dokoupil outlined a social experiment he conducted on unsuspecting people on the street: “We showed identical clips to both Trump supporters and Biden supporters, starting with this clash between police and Black Lives Matter protesters….But when we asked a question designed to test their political filter, their answers could not have been more different.”

Clips ran of Trump supporters backing the police in the confrontation with Biden supporters backing the protesters. Turning to New York University psychology professor Jay Van Bavel, Dokoupil worried: “So this is a problem that’s getting worse?” Van Bavel replied: “Yeah, it’s getting worse, and I don’t see it unwinding any time soon.”

Lacking any self-awareness that leftist media figures like himself were largely to blame for the political polarization, Dokoupil breathlessly asked: “How did that happen?” Van Bavel at least briefly listed the press as one of several causes:

Our political leaders stopped cooperating and voting in different ways. The media that we tune into, you can now select media that aligns with your political identities, and social media allows you to tune in to whatever you want to tune into, whatever you hope to see. And so you can confirm all your beliefs and identities and expectations by plugging into these different realities.

Playing expert, Dokoupil asserted: “That can make it harder to understand why others would view things so differently.” Van Bavel came back to explain:

So this is known as what’s called the bias blind spot. That’s it’s really easy for us to see bias in other people, but it’s hard for us to see it in our self. Even though other people around us, our friends and family and colleagues, can see when we’re biased, we have a hard time seeing it.

Still not connecting the dots to himself and his partisan press colleagues, Dokoupil worried: “What does it mean for our government, for our democracy, for our country, if we can’t look at a shared reality?” Van Bavel warned: “If you don’t see the same facts, you can’t have a serious discussion about how to come to some solution.”

The professor then offered this advice:

And you can interpret them through an extreme partisan lens and decide anybody who doesn’t see the reality the way you do is an evil person that needs to be defeated, or you can pause and ask yourself, “Am I seeing it the right way? Am I seeing it the only way? And why are they seeing it differently than me?”

Gee, when will CBS adopt that approach for its coverage of the Trump administration?

After the taped report ended, Dokoupil repeated the tips: “Pause and ask yourself, what are you looking at, and are you seeing it the right way? Is there another way to look at it?”

Fellow co-host Anthony Mason cautioned against anyone “rushing to conclusions”: “And to the point of pausing, social media works so quickly and people react so fast that there isn’t a lot of pausing anymore, in fact, quite the opposite. There’s a lot of rushing to conclusions and judgments.”

When has the media ever NOT rushed to judgment?! That’s basically their entire business model when it comes hostile coverage of Republicans and conservatives. Only Democrats are granted the benefit of the doubt.

Amazingly, King then chimed in with this declaration: “The bias blind spot is very scary. But when the professor said if you don’t see the same facts – that’s the thing, Tony. How do we get past this if we don’t even see the same facts?” Again, the laundry list of her political conflicts of interest is simply astounding.

Finally, as the segment came to an end, Dokoupil and Mason showed a small glimmer of self-reflection when it came to the issue of “bias”:

DOKOUPIL: How do we run a government if we don’t have a shared reality? And then each of us believe deeply that we are seeing the truth and everyone else is crazy. But we’ve got to ask ourselves, maybe we have it wrong?  

MASON: Well, and you have to – and I think it’s very important because this part of the job that we have to do sometimes is you have to look at something and go, “Alright, why does this person see this so differently? What do they see that I don’t – that I am not seeing?”

It’s truly amazing to watch how the hypocritical media can scold others about not being open to other points of view while reporters constantly push the left’s agenda without giving it a second thought. The press is never comfortable holding up a mirror to itself.

This woeful lack of self-awareness was brought to viewers by Colgate and Walmart. You can fight back by letting these advertisers know what you think of them sponsoring such content.

Here is a transcript of the September 18 segment:

7:37 AM ET

TONY DOKOUPIL: This morning, through a very unique test of partisanship, we are finding out that Democrats and Republicans are not just deeply divided on the facts, they may literally be seeing two completely different worlds. Gallup polling going back two decades shows there is a stark and widening political divide on a whole range of issues. But now a growing number of researchers are coming around to the idea that politics actually alters people’s perceptions. We decided to put that idea to the test.

[ON-SCREEN HEADLINE: The Political Divide; Tony Examines How Americans View Events Through a Partisan Lens]

(…)

7:38 AM ET

DOKOUPIL: We showed identical clips to both Trump supporters and Biden supporters, starting with this clash between police and Black Lives Matter protesters. Almost everybody had a strong reaction.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN A: That’s terrible.

UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN B: This is awful. This shouldn’t be.

DOKOUPIL: But when we asked a question designed to test their political filter, their answers could not have been more different. Who do you think is being more aggressive?

WOMAN B: I would have to say the protesters because they’re not letting them through.

DOKOUPIL: Who would you say is being the aggressor there?

WOMAN A: NYPD.

DOKOUPIL: The police, not the protesters?

WOMAN A: Right.

(…)

7:40 AM ET

DOKOUPIL: In fact, there was only one thing everyone seemed to agree on. Do you think America is becoming more politically divided?

WOMAN B: Yes.

WOMAN A: Yes.

(…)

7:40 AM ET

DOKOUPIL: So this is a problem that’s getting worse?

JAY VAN BAVEL: Yeah, it’s getting worse, and I don’t see it unwinding any time soon.

DOKOUPIL: Jay Van Bavel is a professor of psychology at New York University.

VAN BAVEL: Political identities are one of the most important and powerful identities that people have right now in this country. And that’s grown over time.

DOKOUPIL: How did that happen?

VAN BAVEL: Our political leaders stopped cooperating and voting in different ways. The media that we tune into, you can now select media that aligns with your political identities, and social media allows you to tune in to whatever you want to tune into, whatever you hope to see. And so you can confirm all your beliefs and identities and expectations by plugging into these different realities.

DOKOUPIL: That can make it harder to understand why others would view things so differently. Can you imagine a Democrat looking at the videos you saw and coming to the complete opposite conclusion?

WOMAN B: No, I can’t. No, I can’t.

VAN BAVEL: So this is known as what’s called the bias blind spot. That’s it’s really easy for us to see bias in other people, but it’s hard for us to see it in our self. Even though other people around us, our friends and family and colleagues, can see when we’re biased, we have a hard time seeing it. We think we’re rational.

DOKOUPIL: What does it mean for our government, for our democracy, for our country, if we can’t look at a shared reality?

VAN BAVEL: If you don’t see the same facts, you can’t have a serious discussion about how to come to some solution. Some things are very clear, but most things are ambiguous. And so we have to decide how we’re going to interpret them. And you can interpret them through an extreme partisan lens and decide anybody who doesn’t see the reality the way you do is an evil person that needs to be defeated, or you can pause and ask yourself, “Am I seeing it the right way? Am I seeing it the only way? And why are they seeing it differently than me?”

DOKOUPIL: Yeah, the key there is “pause.”

ANTHONY MASON: Yes, yeah.  

DOKOUPIL: Pause and ask yourself, what are you looking at, and are you seeing it the right way? Is there another way to look at it? But the reality is that in the moment we’re living in, you can show people the very same video, and they can come to opposite points of opinion on it.

MASON: And to the point of pausing, social media works so quickly and people react so fast that there isn’t a lot of pausing anymore, in fact, quite the opposite. There’s a lot of rushing to conclusions and judgments.

GAYLE KING: The bias blind spot is very scary. But when the professor said if you don’t see the same facts – that’s the thing, Tony. How do we get past this if we don’t even see the same facts?

DOKOUPIL: How do we run a government if we don’t have a shared reality? And then each of us believe deeply that we are seeing the truth and everyone else is crazy. But we’ve got to ask ourselves, maybe we have it wrong?  

MASON: Well, and you have to – and I think it’s very important because this part of the job that we have to do sometimes is you have to look at something and go, “Alright, why does this person see this so differently? What do they see that I don’t – that I am not seeing?”

DOKOUPIL: It’s part of why the virus is so bad now right now, is it separates us. And the only way to get past this is through conversation, it’s to meet people who have that opposite point of view and to talk to them.

KING: But it’s really hard. It reminds of marital counseling where you’d be on a rant and the counselor would say, “But that’s your reality, that’s not his reality.” And I’m thinking, “But he’s wrong!”  

DOKOUPIL: It reminds me a lot of marital counseling. [Laughter]  

KING: It does. Because we’re looking at the same thing.

DOKOUPIL: Like, the proof is right there, don’t you see it!  

KING: It’s very, very fascinating. I wonder how you get past that?

MASON: That’s the dilemma.

DOKOUPIL: Conversation.

KING: Mine was divorce, I wouldn’t recommend that. [Laughter] So you gotta figure out something else, people. You gotta –

MASON: Well, we tried that once, it was called the Civil War. It didn’t work out so well.

KING: We’ve gotta work this out.



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