Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Political balance = balance of politicians?

The centre-right is annoyed with Rai thanks to two programmes: Fabio Fazio's hosting of Finance Minister Padoa-Schioppa on Che Tempo Che Fa, and Lucia Annunziata's hosting of Enrico Deaglio on Ballaro. Padoa-Schioppa took time to explain the left's budget; Deaglio, a journalist, argued that the centre-right was ready to stuff the ballot boxes in last April's general election. In both cases, the centre-right makes the same complaints: these programmes were not balanced because they lacked a reply from the centre-right. But to read this report on Annunziata's questioning of Deaglio, his appearance on Ballaro became an own-goal after Annunziata calmly reminded him that the ballots were still there and could be checked for any manipulation of the kind alleged by Deaglio.
What's the thinking here?
  1. Any screen presence for a particular party can only benefit that party without adequate reply or examination
  2. (Either) no Italian journalist is sufficiently independent to give that adequate reply or examination,
  3. (Or) Annunziata and Fazio are not sufficiently independent to give that adequate reply or examination
  4. Replies or critical examination must be within the same programme.
  5. Therefore, any screen presence for one party must always contain screen presence for the opposing party
In other words, political balance is equivalent to a balance of politicians.

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