My New Book, Left Turn: How Liberal Media Bias Distorts the American Mind

This week, thanks to the invitation of my friend and colleague Eugene Volokh, I will guest-blog about my book Left Turn: How Liberal Media Bias Distorts the American Mind. I am extremely honored and grateful for the opportunity.

Later in the week, I plan to discuss some specific aspects of my book, including: (i) why I believe journalists should be more open about their political views, (ii) why the “corporate media theory,” a favorite notion among the far left, is more like religion than science, (iii) how my very public resignation from a UCLA faculty committee on admissions would never have happened if I hadn’t been writing Left Turn at the time, and (iv) what the mirror image of a newsroom would look like—that is, what a newsroom would look like if journalists views became as conservative as they currently are liberal.

But today I will focus mainly on a summary of the book. (But briefly say something about the notion of a “political quotient.”)

Earlier today, Eugene V. provided an excellent summary. Just in case you don’t want to search for that, here’s maybe the best two-sentence summary of the book. 1) It attempts to measure media bias quantitatively and scientifically, and it shows that, yes, basically the entire mainstream media have a liberal bias. 2) The bias has shifted the average American’s views about 20–25 points on the “political quotient scale”—about the difference between the average voter in a purple state (such as Iowa or Nevada) and the average voter in a solid red state (such as Texas or Kentucky).

A review in the Weekly Standard gives a longer summary. And if you’d like to see me summarizing the book on video, then click (i) here for a short interview (on the O’Reilly Factor), (ii) here for a medium-length interview (on CBN), and (iii) here for a long interview (on Uncommon Knowledge).

In the book I compute the “slant quotient” of several media outlets. These are related to “political quotients” of politicians and citizens. Click here if you’d like to compute your own political quotient. Click here to see the political quotients of some famous politicians. Click here to see Senator Fred Thompson (R-Tenn.) gently chide me for misestimating his political quotient. Specifically, he suggests it should be 0, not the 11.2 that I estimate. (He had interviewed John Kasich immediately before me—hence the references to Kasich.) Click here to see the slant quotients of several news outlets.

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