The IUSB Vision Weblog

The way to crush the middle class is to grind them between the millstones of taxation and inflation. – Vladimir Lenin

Addressing Recent Issues with The IUSB Vision

Posted by iusbvision on October 9, 2006

In light of recent criticisms, I am inclined to address some of the controversial issues revolving around the IUSB Vision. When this publication made its debut in spring of 2006, the staff consisted primarily of only four writers, a self-budget and a single paged double-sided issue.  Our mission was to showcase clubs and campus events as well as address important issues going on in the news. The Vision continues to put forth effort to adhere to this mission. Now, thanks to our readers, the Vision has grown into a staff of over 10 individuals and an astounding eight page double-sided issue.

However, the Vision has been undergoing many criticisms regarding articles suggestive to ideological viewpoints and conservatism. There is no arguing some of the staff has strong viewpoints regarding many divisive issues in the world today. Also, there is no arguing that many on our staff fall conservative on many issues. This does not imply we are attempting to create a propagandist machine to portray one viewpoint. Our writers, quite coincidentally, tend to fall conservative on issues. The Vision has attempted numerous times to bring on writers who hold of a more liberalist viewpoint. In each scenario, these writers have declined to work for us.  The one person willing to work with us is Ryan Hill, the president of the College Democrats. 

The challenge continues, we are taking these criticisms to heart and are currently working on a mechanism by which the Vision can bring on more writers with diverse perspectives. This is an effort to allow our readers to make more informed decisions on many important issues. However, the Vision will not censor its current writing staff in an attempt to portray an artificial sense of balance.  Nor will the Vision censor articles written by its staff that are considered unpopular. If you are interested in becoming a part of the staff, feel free to contact us.

The original intent of the online Weblog was to offer an opportunity for anyone to argue with staff writers with whom they may disagree. Using this system, each writer can be held accountable for their viewpoint by the Vision audience. This has been most successful, and we have received very useful feedback.  Looking to the future, starting with this issue, the format of Vision has changed to differentiate and disassociate campus clubs or events and political coverage. I hope you will find this change comfortable, thank you for your continued readership.

Craig Chamberlin
Assistant Editor

63 Responses to “Addressing Recent Issues with The IUSB Vision”

  1. John M. Novak said

    Instead of going to opposite extremes in an attempt to find balance, why not report on things as objectively as possible. I know it is popular to have writers that will serve as a lightening rod in order to increase readership, but this reader is more likely to ignore the rhetoric of those that have a narrow perspective on things. Please leave the hyperbole and spurious correlations out of your work, and people may find you to be a good source of information.

  2. Andrew said

    So Craig, what you’re saying is that if I accepted your invitation to write for this paper, and I choose to write a column like the Kinsey report, you’d print it?

  3. Chuck Norton said

    John,

    Have no worries, The Vision does indeed get widely read. Faculty, staff and students talk to me about the content every day.

    As far as “those with a narrow perspective”, it seems that you have missed the point of the editorial parts of The Vision. If we just gave the same information and spin that CBS or the NYT gives every day there would be no point to picking up The Vision. What we try and do is find the most interesting topics of discussion, or in my case, I try to find the most interesting facts that go under reported and report on those. This way the reader is exposed to a more complete view and more facts than before.

    While there is no question that the hyper-partisans dont like the facts in my columns, they are facts that go unrefuted week after week, and when I wrote for The Preface year after year. You speak of hyperbole and spurious correlations, but I dare say that if you were to debate with any writer in The Vision as to the content of their column, you will find more facts and truth than you may be prepared to deal with. If what is in The Vision is just hype as you imply, I invite you to attempt to show that any of the facts presented in my columns for example are false.

    Also, just because you dont like something that is presented, or it provides you facts that you find inconvenient, doesnt make it false, misleading or inaccurate.

  4. John M. Novak said

    I find it interesting that Mr. Norton felt the need to respond to my post, seeing how I did not specifically mention any particular writer for the Vision. I was merely responding to Mr. Chamberlin’s comments about the perception people had that the Vision is conservative. He stated that he had tried to recruit writers of a “liberalist viewpoint,” and I simply wanted to point out that if the facts were objectively approached then there would be no need to balance things by going to extremes. I personally do not care for extremes of any sort, since it has been my experience that facts are distorted and worse manipulated at the extremes.

    A narrow perspective would be any viewpoint that cannot look at an issue broadly enough to see both sides of an argument while trying to limit the bias that can cloud perspective. This is why I do indeed enjoy the Back Talk segment in the Vision called Talking Points, where both sides of an issue are explored. Maybe I have turned a corner in understanding the editorial section of a paper.

    I am capable of appreciating differing viewpoints, even finding value in them, despite Mr. Norton’s snap assertion from one paragraph that I cannot handle facts that maybe fly in the face of a previously held belief. You could say that it part of my job to look at all the facts in my work and present them regardless of my views. Information is my stock and trade, and I expect that I can process, analyze, and report on more facts than the average person.

    I found Mr. Norton’s response to my post both glib and patronizing, and I pray that he does not hold this contempt for all of the readers of the Vision that may disagree with him or his “facts”. I am grateful that Mr. Chamberlin was gracious enough to present his concerns and efforts in making the Vision better. My apologies that my opinion and advice damaged sensitive ears.

  5. Craig Chamberlin said

    John,

    I could see why you would find a paper addressing issues objectively a valuable resource for information. Unfortunately, said articles do not reflect what the Vision is all about. Our tag line reads “a student reflection” because we want our paper to reflect students opinions and feelings about important issues going on in the world.

    Objectivity can be found on many newspapers and internet articles. However, the opinions reflected in our articles are unique to each person – which is what I think makes the Vision great. I sure would hate to censor their opinions on these topics, or ask them to remove their opinions on these topics to portray an image of balance. I would much rather bring on additional students with contradicting beliefs and have them speak their own opinions.

    I do appreciate your constructive criticism though. Traditionally, we do not get much of it. As a side note, we’re hoping not to bring on additional writers with a liberalist viewpoint at an ‘extreme’. Our campus is filled with moderate liberals who have strong justifications and facts for what they believe. These individuals are the ones we want writing for us.

    Andrew,

    The editor assigns story topics to writers. If there is a demand for a column related to sex, then you may have the opportunity to write whatever you wish. However, issue topics are at the editor’s discretion.

    The editor tells someone to write about women’s issues – they throw their idea back to him, and he determines whether the topic will be beneficial or not.

    Otherwise, we would end up with 15 articles on random topics and no logical organization.

    For example, I am assigned the topic of “Is Terrorism Ever Justified?”. I cannot just simply write an article about sex and he will publish it, because the upcoming issue will require the topic assigned.

    In this sense ‘content’ is structured and ‘speech’ remains uncensored. Any writer can feel free to write anything they wish on the topic assigned without fear of their point censored. This is important to maintain a steady flow of information from the newsletter to the viewers.

    Granted, writers are allowed to request certain topics, and we are usually pretty lenient on what they wish to write.

    MANY of our writers would love their own column in the Vision, so if you joined us, you’d have to get in line.

    Thanks for your posts.

  6. Andrew said

    As I’ve said; I’m not comfortable writing for this paper, especially considering your rather draconian policies on what can show up in it. I find your definition of free speech amusing, because it seems like you’ve just redefined the term so it has a more convenient definition.

    I understand that you need some structure to the paper, but considering that the complaints that you’re getting about this paper being too conservative are essentially directed at the people who will be choosing/approving the topics/columns, I hardly think that any opinion that’s significantly different from theirs (a column on the subject of why abortion is biblically OK, for example) is going to make it into your paper. This is why I think your claims of a glasnost are more than a little disingenuous.

    I’m also tickled by this idea that you want only liberals who aren’t too far to the left to write for you (this reinforces the idea that you don’t really want to listen to opinions that differ from yours by a great deal). Apparently this door doesn’t swing both ways, because it’d be difficult to find someone who’s farther to the right than our beloved Mr. Norton.

    Surely you realize that you’re essentially saying “as long as everyone says what we tell them to say, we’ll let them say it”. This doesn’t mean that you aren’t censoring people.

    I do find it interesting that Chuck often responds to criticism with “I AM GETTING A COLUMN READY THAT WILL BLOW YOU OUT OF THE WATER, SURE ENOUGH MR. STUPIDPANTS!!!”. I haven’t seen many (if any) of these promised masterpieces, so am I to assume that you’re reigning him in? The alternative is to think that Chuck’s just blustering because he can’t lay his fingers on any facts, and I am very reluctant to assume this because he is pretty much a paradigm of virtue.

  7. Craig Chamberlin said

    Andrew,

    I stated we are very lenient on optional stories, if you do not believe me. That’s Fine, but feel free to cite some reference to your claim of us censoring the other side before you take a radical viewpoint on our structure.

    Chuck backs his columns with facts. Sure, many people disagree with him, but this doesn’t change this fact.

    What we meant by ‘extreme’ is making claims with ‘no’ facts. Try not to draw conclusions you desire to see. We’re not as evil as you paint us(with no facts).

  8. Andrew said

    You said that the editor can either tell one of your writers what to write about or approve/disapprove something they’ve written. Since your editorial process is not democratic (nothing wrong with that) only the editors can definitively say how things will be run, and this is what you said. I’m not taking a radical viewpoint of your structure; I’m just reading your post.

    Personally, I think that Chuck’s columns are based on facts the in much the same way that ‘Ice Age II’ is based on a true story. But that’s just my opinion.

    Finally, are you saying that (a) only liberals make claims without factual basis, or (b) you’re ok with conservative claims without factual basis, but not similar liberal claims? Either way, it sounds to me as if you’re only interested in getting a token (hamstrung) liberal to shut up your critics.

  9. Craig Chamberlin said

    As a side note,

    You make criticisms against Chuck’s radicalism, then immediately say we’re hypocrites for not taking on a “radical extremist” left wing writer.

    So you have a problem with a liberal who, as I stated above, is a “moderate liberal[s] who [has] strong justifications and facts for what they believe”

    Tell me, just what kind of individual do you want arguing for the liberal side? Some radical with no facts or justification to back up his argument? Andrew, I’m sorry, you are wrong on this issue. I usually don’t tell people when they are wrong. But this is important. We will never let someone EMBARASS the liberal argument by making outrageous claims without backing them up with facts. We’d be doing the opposing viewpoint a dis-service by bringing on these writers.

    If you believe Chuck is this same kind of writer for the conservative side, then why would you complain? After all, if he is wrong he is doing conservatives a dis-service. You should be happy it’s being published.

    You came out yelling censorship when I told you we have a structure to our newsletter. Tell me Andrew, have we censored your rebuttles? We could have easily done so by deleting any posts you have made. The preface has structure to their newspaper, are they censoring too? How about the South Bend Tribune? They don’t publish every single article brought across their desks, are they censoring? Do you have ‘any’ evidence that we have ‘ever’ shut out an opposing viewpoint on an issue?

    You don’t, and do you know why? Because we never have. Your quick to throw out words towards Chuck like ‘extremism’ and ‘radicalism’ but are guilty of the very same thing. You have made outrageous claims without ‘any’ evidence to back them up.

  10. Craig Chamberlin said

    Let me summarize this:

    1. I don’t believe Chuck is a radical, he uses facts in his articles.
    2. If I found a liberal writer who is as aggressive as Chuck and uses facts like Chuck, I’d take him on in a heartbeat.
    3. We have a structure to our newsletter because, quite frankly, all newsletters / newspapers have structure. We’re not going to publish 15 random articles.
    4. Censorship is the deliberate revoking of a story that disagrees with ones opinions – which we have not done.
    5. Until one can prove we’ve attempted to censor, why would they accuse us of doing as such?
    6. We are ‘a student reflection’ – some students are going to believe things you do not agree with. If this is the case, feel free to hold them accountable on the weblog.

  11. Mr. Chamberlin, I have to take exception to your assertion that Mr. Norton “backs his columns with facts.” As you yourself have observed elsewhere on this site, Mr. Norton cherry-picks the facts he wants to use and makes things up to fit the picture he wants to paint. His most recent column is ample evidence of this.

    Mr. Norton also claims that “the hyper-partisans dont like the facts in my columns, they are facts that go unrefuted week after week, and when I wrote for The Preface year after year.” The “facts” that Mr. Norton speaks of are often distortions or made up out of whole cloth. I saw right through them, but had neither the time nor the inclination to dispute this point with Mr. Norton, due in no small part to the fact that he is clearly unable to listen to opposing viewpoints.

    Mr. Norton cannot, however, say the same of me. I engaged him in a very long conversation, was very reasonable and respectful of his comments, and considered his point of view. Do you recall this conversation, Chuck? If so, you should know that I found out where you got that rumor about Morris Dees. Did you really think that I wouldn’t figure out that you think Stormfront White Nationalist Community is a reliable source, and that Mr. Dees’ ex-wife’s allegations were thrown out by the judge in the divorce suit? — But I digress.

    I now realize the folly of my decision to ignore him, but I’m still far too busy with my own affairs to set the record straight. To correct every error, counter every distortion Mr. Norton has made would require far more time than I have available to me. I invite readers to check the facts for themselves – and go over Mr. Norton’s column with a fine-toothed comb.

  12. Andrew said

    uh, dude.

    I just read your posts. I’m not making this stuff up. If you don’t want to sound this way, your editing process should be more rigorous.

    You said “What we meant by ‘extreme’ is making claims with ‘no’ facts.” in reference to your previous statement “we’re hoping not to bring on additional writers with a liberalist viewpoint at an ‘extreme’.”, so you’ve said that extreme liberals are liberals who do not base their statements on facts.

    All I’m asking is if ‘extreme liberal’ means ‘liberal who doesn’t base his claims on facts’ does ‘extreme conservative’ means ‘conservative who doesn’t base his claims on fact’? I’m not saying you have to hire Karl Marx. Calm down.

    Craig, I don’t have ‘problems’ with conservatives, liberals, libertarians or socialists. I have a ‘problem’ with a paper with university support that presents only one viewpoint. I don’t think you can reasonably construe my post to say that I’d take issue with a moderate liberal (whatever that is).

    Personally, I think some of your columnists are an embarrassment to the conservative viewpoint, but it’s too bad that you think incompetence on the side of my opponents would tickle me. That’s not very flattering. I believe in the free flow of ideas, so that the good ones will be validated. A poor presentation of an idea is not conducive to this end.

    It’s pretty easy to never censor anything when all but one of your writers are conservative and you’re picking the topics for your ‘talking points’ section (which is the only section, unless I’ve missed something) in which you’ve got a liberal viewpoint. Surely you can spot the humor here, Craig? I’m not angry; this is amusing. Share my joy.

    Censoring my posts would prove that you’re completely intolerant of opposing viewpoints (it’s obvious that I’ve touched a nerve, or you wouldn’t have suggested the possibility). I don’t think that most of your staff is unwilling to listen to opposition, necessarily. I do think that you’re not willing to allow certain opinions to be voiced in this paper (e.g. Kinsey Confidential), and this is all I said.

    It’s important that the publishers of any media are responsible to their public for what’s published in it. This is all I’m asking from this paper’s editorial staff. If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.

  13. Craig Chamberlin said

    Erkki,

    Our readers should go over anything they read with a fine-toothed comb, otherwise, what is the point? If they fail to do so, they will fall victim to not forming their own opinion on issues and merely re-iterating the opinion of others.

    Also, I disagree on many points made by the staff, this doesn’t mean I believe ‘everything’ they write can be stereotyped due to one disagreement.

    Andrew,

    I just read over my post as well, it came off awefully aggressive. I apologize. My assertions were directed at your claim: “I find your definition of free speech amusing, because it seems like you’ve just redefined the term so it has a more convenient definition.” I’d like to see how you’d structure your own newsletter. No matter what we do, we’ll be accused of censorship by those who don’t like us or the opinions of the writers.

    Since there are conservative articles in our issues, the assumption is we censored all those individuals who weren’t conservative. When in reality, this wasn’t the case. The few viewpoints we have recieved (those who believe we are not really working on creating a balance of opinions) doesn’t concern me much. I’m willing to take the heat. As I said, I prefer to be held accountable.

    However, you accuse us of not portraying a balanced viewpoint but do not offer to write for us. In fact, refuse to write for us.

    I’m glad you’d rather see the free flow of ideas than an embarassment to the opposing viewpoint. We definitly agree on this point. However, you insult our writers… not cool. We’re not journalism majors, just students. Some of our articles aren’t going to be as strong as others.

    *shares his Joy* We are working on it.

    Kinsey Confidential… *sigh* Why would we pay someone to write a sex column for our paper when we could get student writers to do it just as well (if not a million times better)? It’s not a very good student reflection if it’s not done by students… By your standards didn’t the Preface “censor” Kinsey?

    We would never delete your posts, thats all I’m saying. If we were out to censor and oppress ideas, we’d have done it already.

  14. Craig:

    Then you clearly haven’t been paying very close attention to how Chuck writes. I have yet to read anything from him that didn’t contain some outright fabrication or misrepresentation. Reasonable people can disagree reasonably, and many people have attempted to disagree with Chuck reasonably. Chuck, however, has consistently demonstrated an inability to reasonably consider alternative points of view.

    Note that he labels people who disagree with him “hyper-partisan.” This is what psychologists call projection: attributing negative traits that you possess to someone else so as to let yourself off the hook for your own behavior. This is also called “spin” in the media industry. By throwing out your accusations, you force others to respond to them, and by continually misrepresenting or lying about what they say, you prevent meaningful discussion from happening and further your own agenda.

    Chuck maintains that he “reports underreported facts.” While it’s certainly true that the media is biased, I am aware of no serious scholar who contends that the elite media has a liberal bias. But Chuck lets himself off the hook by contending that academia has a liberal bias. If that’s so, I question why Chuck bothers with school if he’s not able to get a good education.

    With regards to media bias, I can only suggest that people read Noam Chomsky and Edward S. Herman’s Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of Mass Media. I summarize their propaganda model and provide links to other scholarship that utilizes this model and points to media bias that favors capitalism and the US government as a general rule of thumb on the website I link to here. I strongly recommend that you check it out. There are numerous studies demonstrating that certain media sources provide false information that’s put out by the gov’t or corporations and that people believe.

  15. John M. Novak said

    Mr. Chamberlin:

    I appreciate your response to clarify your mission as a student reflection paper. As a publication though, I would hold the editors accountable for checking sources to make certain that facts are not misrepresented. There is a world of difference between using facts to support an argument and misrepresenting the facts. A reader could get an extremely distorted view of an issue or of those writing it, if the writer did not have sufficient experience interrupting results and did it incorrectly or simply found facts that might loosely serve to fit their experience or world view.

  16. Craig Chamberlin said

    Thank you all for your feedback regarding these issues. I know it is impossible to make a publication everyone will believe is fair. All I can say is I take your criticisms seriously and I’ll do my best to address them.

    Please continue to keep a close eye on us, it can only result in a better publication.

  17. RYan Hill said

    I do need ot say, I’ma pretty leftwing perosn and as of yet my articles have not been censored by the Vision. We’re going to be testing this theory in the coming month once I have some time for an extra project I plan on working on, but I have not seen any censorship.

    I also must agree, I have never found an article written by Chuch that was not full of very selective holes. He is reminiscent of the yellow journalists of old. I too have been ignoring it too long, but thats come to end. Dear God, I’m agreeing with Erkki.

  18. Rachel Custer said

    Mr. Novak,

    I wanted to thank you for your thoughtful, constructive criticism. Sometimes it is hard to get that through all the emotion from both sides. One of the main objectives of the Vision is to be a good source of information for students regarding activities and groups on campus. Sometimes this, too, gets lost in the articles we run that are emotional button-pushers for people on both sides of the issues. I wanted to acknowledge your attempt to give us helpful criticism, which is the only way for any publication or group to improve on what they are doing. Know that at least one member of the Vision staff has heard and acknowledged your valid points, and that, as the business manager, I will attempt to pass these points on to the rest of the staff.

    Andrew,

    As far as I know, every newspaper, newsletter and magazine with an editorial board operates so that that board reserves the right to edit articles or decide not to publish them to fulfill the editorial vision of that publication. This is not seen in the journalism profession as censorship, but as editing. However, I understand that you are trying to make the point that you feel the Vision needs more representation from opposing viewpoints. As Craig has said, I too would be very interested in having writers from all points of view on campus. However, due to the editorial standards of our newsletter, there are certain things that we probably wouldn’t print (again, remember I am the business manager, not the editor, so this is just my opinion as a member of the staff). For instance, in our Constitution, we have reserved the right not to print things of a crude nature (such as the Kinsey report), and it would be hard for me personally to endorse a publication that would represent a viewpoint I felt to be inaccurate and immoral (such as an article on Biblical support of abortion – in my opinion, there is no Biblical support of this issue, and it would be difficult to print an article that I personally felt had no basis in fact.) Again, this is speaking from a personal opinion, NOT as an editor of the Vision.

    Thank you both for your input.

  19. Andrew said

    You’ve missed the point.

    I think you’re going to have a hard time finding people who at once disagree with you and are willing to write for you, mainly because they’re not convinced that they would be able to write about certain topics.

    Kinsey isn’t necessarily ‘crude’. You don’t like it, sure, but that doesn’t mean it’s not fit for print (Honestly, I don’t care if you don’t print Kinsey. I bring it up because I need an tangible example of something to which you object). I don’t like some of the things Chuck Norton says, but I do think that he should be allowed to say them. It’s about free speech.

    If someone’s going to write an article on biblical support for (or ambivalence to) abortion, they’d have to cite the texts they felt applied. As such, your objection to such a piece on the grounds that it has no factual basis is silly.

    Since you are an editor of this paper, I find it difficult to take comfort from your assurance that you voice your opinions as personal, and not as influencing your decisions as an editor. If I felt that the personal opinions of the editors would not color their decisions as to what makes it into their paper, we wouldn’t be having this discussion.

    I agree that it is an editor’s responsibility to check his writer’s pieces for factual inaccuracies. However you are suggesting you’d instead check your writer’s articles for differences in opinion or interpretation of fact, then publish or trash the piece based on your findings. This is censorship, this is why you’ll have a difficult time finding writers who aren’t lockstep with your views, and this is why I think the editorial decisions of this paper are about as objective as Ann Coulter.

  20. Ryan said

    (such as an article on Biblical support of abortion – in my opinion, there is no Biblical support of this issue, and it would be difficult to print an article that I personally felt had no basis in fact.)

    Rachel, I am going to write such an article now, because you’re very wrong. The argument can be made much more clearly from a Biblical perspective that A. a pregnancy is not a human being. B. Humans are souls not bodies, so the destruction of an half-formed body has no effect on a soul that hasn’t inhabited it yet, C. The overall effect of an unwanted pregnancy on the lives of the multitude arround them violates everything Christ said about care and concern for the poor, and E. if it is murder it grossly violates the idea of a just and merciful God, considering how many miscarriages there are in an average year.

    Not to mention several Popes and some of the best thinkers of Christian thought agree that early termination of a pregnancy is not murder.

    The obligation of an editor is to check for factual errors, something impossible in such an article. You have implied you would simply refuse to print it, instead of allowing the print and then confronting it here, as is asked of readers. That suggests a fairly high level of hypocrisy. If you all want this paper to succeed, then you cannot do that. You don’t bother to fact check Chuck’s articles, obviously. So anything you refused to print would have to be assumed a refusal on ideological grounds.

  21. Craig Chamberlin said

    Andrew,

    Firstly, she stated a number of times she is not an editor of the paper.

    Secondly, show me one article of Kinsey that had real educational value.

    Thirdly, you’re wasting your time accusing us of censoring when you have no proof.

    Fourthly, If you believe it is the editors responsibility to check for factual inaccuracies, just what kind of editing process would you put Kinsey Confidential through?

    Ryan,

    Be prepared to defend yourself to the bloody end. 8^D

    I look forward to reading it.

  22. Ryan said

    I’m always prepared, Craig. : )

  23. Rachel Custer said

    Wow, looks like I need to clarify several things.

    My point in stating that I was stating my opinion was to distance my personal opinion from the job that the editors (of which I am only an occasional COPY editor, when it’s absolutely necessary, and really have no say as to what does or does not go in the final edition) attempt to do.

    I meant by my statement that it would be difficult for me personally to write for or endorse a publication that I felt was purposefully misrepresenting facts or printing things that some may feel to be crude for the sake of crudeness, and not for the sake of intellectual honesty. (Let’s face it, this was essentially the fact with the Kinsey, and while intellectual discussions are important at a university, discussions just for the sake of being crude are not, in my opinion.) However, I am, as I stated, the business manager for the Vision. Therefore, these are my personal opinions, not opinions that influence the editing of the publication.

    Ryan, regarding your statements, when it comes to my faith, my beliefs are not based on the best thinkers in Christianity or on the beliefs of Popes, no matter how popular they may be at the moment. It is based on Christ and on the Bible, and I really am not seeing much chapter and verse support for abortion in your arguments. Also, I must say, the idea of someone arguing Biblical support for killing children makes me a bit sick to my stomach.

  24. Andrew said

    Craig;

    1) I misinterpreted Ms. Custer’s statement. I apologize.

    2) The educational value of Kinsey isn’t relevant. First, (as I said) I am using Kinsey as an example of material you find objectionable. Second, this paper doesn’t limit itself to content that is strictly educational, so an objection to Kinsey on the grounds that it isn’t educational is invalid. Third, the educational value of Kinsey (while irrelevant) is debatable. I don’t read it, so I am not in a position to comment on the subject.

    3) This point is getting old. Whenever you make it, I tell you that I’m just reading your posts and regurgitating what you’ve said. If you think that I am misrepresenting the content of your posts, perhaps (as I’ve said) your editing process needs to be more rigorous.

    4) Asking who fact checks Kinsey is like asking who checks Miss Manners. What point are you trying to make? Is it not the editor’s responsibility to fact check his paper?

  25. Anonymous said

    Dear Vision Editorial Staff,

    I’d like to submit the following item for inclusion as a Vision News Analysis. I believe it follows Mr. Norton’s precedent very well: some potentially true statements, facts which are irrelevant to the stated thesis, and some truly absurd hyperbole. If you do not refute my strongest argument (i.e. 1+1 = 2), then you have no business questioning my interpretation because you are clearly hyper-partisan.

    Sincerely,

    A. Reader

    Some “News Analysts” do not understand the difference between stating facts and interpreting them, as the following facts clearly demonstrate.

    1+1 = 2

    3×5 = 15

    2-1 = 0 (oops!)

    I once saw a priest kill an ant; I’m sure it was due to ideological differences.

    Therefore, as I’ve said all along, the right-wing, neo-conservative, religious-right nouveau blog media supports the complete annihilation of all non-churchgoers.

  26. Sam said

    “Our writers, quite coincidentally, tend to fall conservative on issues.”

    My understanding, and it may not be fully accurate, is that 10 of your 11 writers are conservative – for whatever reason. No human being with a cerebral cortex would construe this as a coincidence.

    Simply acknowledging that the Vision is a right-wing blog would rectify much of the situation, and people could find better things to do with their time than express their frustrations. Stop masquerading as as a fair and/or balanced website. You embarrass yourselves.

    I think if you could just lose Chuck Norton, things would be better.

  27. Jarrod Brigham said

    Most of our writers want nothing to do with politics so I find odd that you state 10 of the 11 writers are conservative. What articles by Stacy Rummel, Carlie Barr, Stacie Jensen, or Erica Vicsek lead you to believe they are conservatives? There are only three writers that write political articles: Ryan Hill, Craig Chamberlin, and Chuck Norton. We have the secretary of the College Republicans and the President of the College Democrats. If you notice, we pretty much only print letters to the editor from the left. Chad Davis, Paul Roma, and Andrew R. cannot be confused with conservatives. If you add up the number of articles printed, I would say that the left is very well represented. Judging by your last statement, I would say your problem is with Chuck Norton, not the Vision. I would also submit to you that it does not matter how many submissions I print from the left, you will not be satisfied as long as Chuck is a writer.

    Jarrod Brigham, editor

  28. Sam said

    Hi Jarrod,

    That was a nice reply – thanks.

    “Most of our writers want nothing to do with politics…”

    That seems hard to understand. Do you really mean this? Perhaps it depends on the definition of politics. Upon examination of the definition of politics based on multiple sources, I am inclined to think that the opinions expressed in the IUSB Vision are related indelibly to political considerations indeed. Perhaps I am way off in this regard. I’m not a political scientist.

    “… so I find odd that you state 10 of the 11 writers are conservative.”

    Why (irrespective of the actual numbers)? Are they not? Read your website. Read what your writers have to say.

    “What articles by Stacy Rummel, Carlie Barr, Stacie Jensen, or Erica Vicsek lead you to believe they are conservatives?”

    Point taken, in that I do not know your blog closely enough to discern their involvement.

    “There are only three writers that (who) write political articles: Ryan Hill, Craig Chamberlin, and Chuck Norton.”

    That’s basically one Alan Combs and two Sean Hannity.s Haven’t read any complaints from your editorial board in that regard. Do you really think that the rest of your writers and/or staff are non-political and/or not right-leaning?

    “We have the secretary of the College Republicans and the President of the College Democrats.”

    Good for you. How does that change my thesis. Go back. Look at the content of your blog. All of it. It is blatantly right wing. Do you manifest the audacity to deny that?

    Why not just acknowledge that the Vision is a conservative blog? What is the barrier? Look at the content of your website. You run a conservative website. Fine. What’s wrong with calling it that?

    “If you notice, we pretty much only print letters to the editor from the left.”

    Ask yourself this: why do people write in? Usually because they disagree. OF COURSE a right wing site like the IUSB Vision is going to receive comnmentary from the other side. Do you expect non-dissenters to dissent. Another way of saying this: so what if you pidgeonhole dissenters in the “letters to the editor” column? I can’t rule out the possibility that you receive equal amounts of back-slapping feedback. Maybe you are too kind by withholding it. Let’s be serious, Jarrod. Most of the fhe feedback you receive is from people you piss off, which amounts to most people (yet you claim that your writers are not political in their literal aspirations). Come on Jarrod. You run a right-wing political web-rag. What’s wrong with just admitting it? You’re proud, aren’t you? Go back. Read virtually anything from your site.

    “Chad Davis, Paul Roma, and Andrew R. cannot be confused with conservatives. If you add up the number of articles printed, I would say that the left is very well represented.”

    So I am supposed to add up the total number of articles published on your right wing blog, regardless of topic (taking you for your word in terms of these other authors), divide by author, and come up with an insignificant Chi square test of significance. What do they write about? The same major issues underlying this entire debate? Perhaps. I don’t know, honestly.

    “Judging by your last statement, I would say your problem is with Chuck Norton, not the Vision. I would also submit to you that it does not matter how many submissions I print from the left, you will not be satisfied as long as Chuck is a writer.”

    (1) Print more pieces from the left (as you describe – BTW what does such language from you mean in and of itself?) but see if you can move away from just the dissenter’s corner in that regard. Invite editorial perspectives including from the “left”, no-holds-barred. Let each side have its say. You don’t do that, and don’t wuss out and tell me it’s because your right wing blog “can’t find” someone willing to do so – and if it’s truly that bad, then just admit your right wing propaganda blog status. That would be easiest for you.

    (2) Chuck Norton is a symptom of a much larger problem, namely the fact that your right-wing blog tries to masquerade, embarrassingly so, as a bipartisan newsletter representing all intellectually-stimulated, inquisitive faculty and staff at IUSB.

    Print all you want in terms of dissent from the left. It is immaterial.

    Sam

    P.S. With all due respect, shame on you for being such a young individual, yet so blatantly biased in terms of politics to the extent that you have the nerve to supervise an outrageously conservative site like this and yet try to convince the uninformed that you are publishing in a bipartisan manner.

  29. Craig Chamberlin said

    Sam,

    I’m a Sean Hannity?… Really? I’m not sure how to respond to that…

    Despite what you believe Sam, IUSB Students can think for themselves and formulate their own opinions regarding the bias you believe you see in our site.

    “Shame on You”?
    You must really believe students are incapable of seeing bias when it crosses their path. We aren’t forcing anyone to believe anything. Since this is technically an insult to the student body, I’ll let it go from there.

    In regards to your opinion, you are free to believe what you want to believe. Due to the lack of any solid facts to your opinion, it can hardly be called a ‘thesis’.

  30. Sam said

    The IUSB Vision is a blatant right-wing website that, for some strange reason, doesn’t simply call itself that.

    There is bias ALL OVER your website.

    It’s the reason for this very thread. Go back to the top.

    Equally shameful is your attempt to suggest that I am insulting the student body, under the presumption that they can’t tell the difference. I never mentioned them myself. My irritation is with your editorial staff.

    Not a Bush fan, either. Is that technically an insult to the American people? The logic here is unimpressive.

    In any event, let’s see what comes of it.

  31. Ryan said

    Chuck, you are not A reader. You are A writer. You are also the only person on campus to use the words hyperpartisan along with that condescending tone and complete inability to realize you’re the biggest one around. Please have the nerve to put your name next to your statements, and stop trying to make imaginary supporters. It doesn’t boost your credibility in any way.

    Second, not too pleased about being called Alan Colmes. I write for the vision because I don’t like the thought of its readers being exposed only to articles like chuck’s, not because I’m a closet conservative sellout.

    Jarrod, the Vision is ultra conservative. Thats apparent to any who reads it. As long as Chuck is writing for it and given a full page for his materials, with no cited sources and full reign to misrepresent the facts however he likes, then most people on campus are going to take one look and stop reading. Craig is a fairly moderate conservative, but no reasonable writer can balance chuck’s works. If there is a Sean Hannity on campus, it’s him. Though he at times makes Hannity look reasonable.

    And Rachel, read my article then we can talk about it. It should be ready in a week or two. : )

  32. Sam said

    Ryan,

    No offense – didn’t mean to imply you are a closet sellout, or even that Craig acts like Sean Hannity. Wasn’t referring to personalities. I was referring to the political imbalance (although admittedly, they are probably happy to have you around :)).

    In that regard, as well as in denying how right-wing it truly is, the IUSB Vision blog is no different from Fox News – far and away the most partisan hack news channel on television. I believe the IUSB blog is an embarrassment not because of its conservative ideology, but because it lacks the guts to just come out and say so. Hence the underpinning of this thread, which Craig started.

    I also concur regarding Chuck Norton. It isn’t just the cherry-picking and hyperbole (and projection, to quote someone else above), but the extremely annoying tone of blind arrogance. That’s mainly why I believe he tarnishes the Vision’s reputation so badly.

    Cheers,

    Sam

  33. Andrew said

    Ryan, I don’t think that Chuck wrote the post by “A. Reader”

    First, Chuck likes attention, so he wouldn’t go anonymous.

    Second, that post is mocking Chuck. Maybe your sarcastometer is broken.

  34. The irony here is no one attempted to label the Preface last year ‘blatantly conservative’ when Chuck wrote for it. This weblog is not a medium for a political group, it a medium for students to share their ideas and opinions on issues. I fall conservative and liberal on policies, so does it make sense to label me ultra-conservative or this weblog ultra-conservative if I am writing for it? Ryan Hill isn’t conservative, so does it make sense to label the publication ultra-conservative if he is writing for it? If you label the publication, you label the people writing for it, and if the people writing for it do not all fall under your label, then your label is inaccurate.

    To place a stereotypical label on anything is simply irresponsible. All it will take is one published article (or one writer) to prove you wrong. (i.e. Paul Roma’s articles have been published and are clearnly not conservative), therefore your argument that this publication / weblog is solely conservative holds no water. If it were solely conservative, there would be no room for disagreement and no opposing viewpoints.

    Stereotypes are dangerous, and ought not to be thrown around lightly (if ever at all). While you may believe the publication is solely conservative, many people do not. I’m sorry to tell you, but this is the truth.

    We want to portray student ideas, and we allow open discussion on these ideas so students can argue and learn. This is not meant to be a one-way news-source, hence the ability to argue with our writers. If we wanted people to only hear our opinions and offer no chance to argue with us, we never would have started a weblog. Therefore it makes no sense that we are creating a solely conservative source meant to brain wash those who are as you state, “unlearned”.

    What is published in print is really irrelevant, our primary goal is to get people on the weblog and get them involved in these political issues. I never claimed to be absolutely correct in any of my arguments, it would be arrogant for me to believe this. If someone proves me wrong, then I am wrong. If I am wrong, then I hope someone jumps on the weblog and corrects me. Even if I am bullheaded and refuse to accept that I am wrong, other people reading the rebuttles will clearly see that I am wrong and learn from it. So the weblog achieves it’s goal.

    We portray as many viewpoints as we recieve, and students can evaluate and search for the answers themselves. If you believe we have some agenda to force people to accept our viewpoint, it is plain silly. After all, we wouldn’t leave room for arguments nor would we ever publish the opposing viewpoint if this were the case.

    Lastly, these are all opinions, and I am inclined to say that you are making selective observations regarding the Vision. We have published every letter to the editor we have recieved from opposing viewpoints and are hoping to get more. We are extending invitations to all students of all political parties to write in letters to the editor for them to get published. We have extended invitations to each political party to write.  We publish what we get, if the students voicing their opinions are conservative, so be it. If they are liberal, so be it.

  35. Sam said

    It absolutely amazes me that the editors of this site are unable to acknowledge its politically conservative slant. Does university funding play a role here?

    None of what was stated above is worth the time of responding to in any detail. Same with all of Chuck’s stuff, only Craig is more civilized. The logic is flawed (e.g., one instance of exception disproving a general assertion – please), the paraphrasing of my comments is displaced inaccurate (though you probably do not realize it) and I have other things to do besides respond with brief essays that would never stand the benefit of reason in this environment. I’ve witnessed a number of previous, very polite attempts in vain.

    I will continue to state the obvious, however: the IUSB Vision blog maintains an obvious right-wing political ideology. I don’t seem to be the only individual espousing this opinion. That doesn’t make me correct, although you do have a problem on your hands.

    Sam

  36. Sam,

    You are failing to grasp my point, let me summarize it a little better. Since all students of all political parties and ideologies are able to participate in the discussions, then the content within this weblog is a direct result of the students participating in it.

    Therefore, if mostly conservative students (or mostly students who fall conservative on issues) participate in the weblog, then the content is going to appear slanted towards conservatism. The same holds for other students stances as well. If there is not enough feedback in regards to liberalism (which you failed to state the criteria by which we would actually be determined a “balanced” paper), then it is a direct result of the failure of students who stand liberalist on these issues to prove those who fall conservative on issues wrong (or submit their own articles / become writers for our staff).

    There are a few possible reasons behind this:
    A) Not enough liberals know about the weblog and, therefore, there are not enough disagreements against those who fall conservative.
    B) This campus doesn’t have many liberals who wish to participate in a debate.
    C) On campus liberals can not refute the points made in conservative articles (and there have been good arguments made against conservatives on the weblog)

    Secondly, try to shy away from labels such as liberalism and conservatism, they do not hold much merit when it comes to real debates. Individuals, when you get down to them personally, are going to agree with Republicans on some issues and Democrats on others. Both parties have great ideas, attempting to stereotype individuals does nothing to create a learning atmosphere. In fact, it is partisian politics.

  37. Sam said

    Chuck,

    So what you are saying is the IUSB blog does indeed have a conservative slant, but only because of the demographics of the staff on hand at the moment, along with reasons behind why this conservative cross-section currently exists. Incidentally I never said or implied that this blog does not allow dissenting voice. Nor do I know what a cross-section of the IUSB student body would look like, so perhaps the Vision is indeed reflective of its audience.

    I disagree with respect to the idea that the terms “liberal” and “conservative” are inappropriate labels, especially in this case, provided some sort of context is offered. Neither one has a negative connotation in my mind. At this juncture and for as long as I have been made aware of the IUSB vision, the editorial writings have been decidedly conservative on social, economic, and international relations fronts. I don’t scour the entire site but tend to glance through what seems to be emphasized editorially and politically speaking. The fact that this whole thing emerged in part out of a bible study group, which I just learned today, is a useful framework in which to view the contents.

    By “failing to grasp your point”, I suppose I fall into the same category of other individuals who have shared the concern leading to the creation of this thread. Perhaps we just don’t get it.

    I would likewise encourage you to not place so much emphasis on “refuting” specific individual points. A. Reader (above) has a good point (and he’s not me).

    It would be nice to have a little more “agree to disagree” in the Vision ecosystem, yet you have strange birds like Chuck Norton who grasp onto little factoids like a rat on a cheeto and then hop on stage challenging anyone to “refute” a laundry list of logically disconnected observations that he uses to support far-fetched notions, such as Bill Clinton could have and should have prevented 9/11. He isn’t going to “prove” any such opinion irrespective of how few share it. I don’t think Chuck has any true inclination of how he comes across as a writer and with all due respect to the Vision, he needs to work on his writing as well.

    Having said that, I’m told that you personally are genuinely interested in achieving more representation from left-leaning individuals on one major front or another. I hope that happens.

    I suppose the intelligent design faux-debate has been addressed in the Vision at some point in the past. As a professor of anatomy and neurobiology who acknowledges the reality of common descent, not sure I could take it. Kidding :) To each his own.

    Cheers,

    Sam

  38. Sam said

    (Of course, I meant “Craig, …”)

    Would be nice to have a preview option when posting, BTW.

  39. Chuck Norton said

    *emote puts on news analyst hat and takes off the gloves……

    Erkki stated “I have yet to read anything from him that didn’t contain some outright fabrication or misrepresentation.”

    Hey Erkki, is that a “fact” just like when you told Chris Chocola that it was “proven” that Bush rigged the pre-war intelligence inspite of the fact that the 9/11 Commission, the Robb-Silberman Report, the Unanimous Bipartisan Senate Select Committee on the Pre War intelligence, the Lord Butler Report said it didnt happen and inspite of the fact that Clintons Sec. Def. Cohen said that we all thought the same thing? …. not to mention the intel from Russia, Egypt etc etc etc…. Chocola put you away.

    Erkki and several of you others have had every opportunity to post real evidence and engage me in the arena of facts and ideas when it comes to the content of my columns. To date those of you who have tried to “prove me wrong” have had thier rhetorical heads served back to them on a platter by the facts. Some of you have not even attempted enter that arena.

    I have been pretty nice to you all up to this point but now its time to just tell it like it is. Erkki, Andrew, Sam, and the lot of you who keep posting these attacks rather than try to win an honest argument with me; quite frankly, you have demonstrated that you just dont have what it takes between the ears to engage me in the arena of facts and ideas. I have given you every opportunity to do so and you have either failed or made no real attampt to do so. I have even challenged Andrew to debate me in public and he will not.

    As always my policy is quite simple, if any student, staff or faculty, wishes to debate me in the cafeteria about the content of my columns you are free to try.

    Erkki said,
    “I am aware of no serious scholar who contends that the elite media has a liberal bias.”

    I dont know who Erkki considers serious other than Noam Chompsky (what a laugh). So how about the Political Director of ABC News, Mark Halperin, that are among my voluminous sources…

    ABC News Honcho: Press Is Liberally Biased, Needs Reform
    Here is the Video – http://newsbusters.org/media/2006-10-24-FNCOReilly.wmv

    Here is Halperin’s Column http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/TheNote/story?id=2599592&page=1

    ——————————————————————-
    Or how about the Editor of Newsweek…

    “Here is what “Newsweek” editor Evan Thomas said on “Inside Washington” last week.
    EVAN THOMAS, EDITOR, “NEWSWEEK”: Let’s talk a little media bias here. The media, I think, wants Kerry to win. And I think they’re going to portray Kerry and Edwards — I’m talking about the establishment media, not Fox — but they’re going to portray — they’re going to portray Kerry and Edwards as the young and dynamic and optimistic and all this. There’s going to be this glow about them this summer, that is going to be worth – collective glow, the two of them, that’s going to be worth maybe 15 points.”

    ———————————————————————————-
    NO SERIOUS SCHOLARS ERKKI SAYS….. OK HOW ABOUT THE PEW RESEARCH CENTER….
    http://people-press.org/reports/display.php3?ReportID=112
    KEY FINDINGS:
    • Two-thirds (67%) said agreed with the statement: “In dealing with political and social issues, news organizations tend to favor one side.” That was up 14 points from 53 percent who gave that answer in 1985.
    • Those who believed the media “deal fairly with all sides” fell from 34 percent to 27 percent.
    • “In one of the most telling complaints, a majority (54%) of Americans believe the news media gets in the way of society solving its problems,” Pew reported.
    • Republicans “are more likely to say news organizations favor one side than are Democrats or independents (77 percent vs. 58 percent and 69 percent, respectively).”
    • The percentage who felt “news organizations get the facts straight” fell from 55 percent to 37 percent.

    ——————————————————————————–
    http://people-press.org/reports/display.php3?ReportID=29
    Press Fair but tilting to Gore……

    ————————————————————————————-

  40. Chuck Norton said

    OR HOW ABOUT THE GALLUP POLL ORG…

    http://www.pollingreport.com/media.htm

    KEY FINDINGS:
    • In September 2005, nearly three times as many Americans said that the media are too liberal (46%) than said the media are too conservative (16%).
    • Since 2001, the percentage saying the media are too liberal has ranged from 45 percent to 48 percent; the percentage seeing the media as too conservative has never exceeded 16 percent.

    ——————————————————————————–
    PEW CENTER AGAIN…

    http://people-press.org/reports/display.php3?ReportID=188
    KEY FINDINGS:
    • “Most Americans (53%) believe that news organizations are politically biased, while just 29 percent say they are careful to remove bias from their reports,” Pew reported.
    • “When it comes to describing the press, twice as many say news organizations are “liberal” (51%) than “conservative” (26%) while 14 percent say neither phrase applies.”
    • Even Democrats thought the press tilted left, not right. Among Democratic respondents, 41 percent thought the media are liberal, compared to 33 percent who found the media to be conservative. Among Republicans, 65 percent said the press is liberal, 22 percent find the media to be conservative.

    ————————————————————————————-
    HOW ABOUT THE AMERICAN JOURNALISM REVIEW…

    http://www.ajr.org/Article.asp?id=3909

    KEY FINDINGS:
    • When read the statement, “Overall, the news media tries to report the news without bias,” 64 percent disagreed (42% saying they disagreed strongly, 22 percent saying they mildly disagreed.) Only 13 percent strongly agreed that the media attempt to keep bias out of the news.

    ———————————————————————————–
    HOW ABOUT INDIANA UNIVERSITY……..

    http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0253206685/qid=1125516203/sr=1-1/ref=sr_1_1/103-3826925-0839809?v=glance&s=books

    Indiana University journalism professors David H. Weaver and G. Cleveland Wilhoit

    KEY FINDINGS:
    • Among the prominent, or elite, media, 32.3 percent rated themselves as more liberal, compared to 11.8 percent who said they were more conservative. Eight percent rated themselves as solidly “left,” but none of the media elite would place themselves squarely on the “right.”
    • Nearly four in ten of all journalists surveyed (38.5%) described themselves as Democrats, compared to just 18.8 percent who said they were Republicans. Among the journalists working at prominent news organizations, just 6 percent would admit to being Republicans, compared to 43 percent who said they were Democrats.

    ————————————————————————————–
    LOS ANGELES TIMES – http://www.findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1282/is_n20_v48/ai_18819145

    The well-known study by S. Robert Lichter, Stanley Rothman, and Linda Richter, The Media Elite, based on in-depth interviews with 238 major-media journalists, found that liberals outnumbered conservatives by 54 per cent to 17 per cent. A nationwide Los Angeles Times study (August 11, 1985) administered its own poll to 3,000 reporters and editors and got almost exactly the same result: 55 per cent liberal and 17 per cent conservative. (The Times survey, which also polled 3,000 members of the general public, found that in the latter group 24 per cent were liberal, 29 per cent conservative, and 33 per cent ”neither,” a striking contrast to the findings for journalists.)

    ————————————————————————————————-
    UCLA AND U OF CHICAGO, CITING INDIANA UNIVERSITY STUDIES

    Click to access GrosecloseMilyo.pdf

    One of the most curious and surprising statistics in all of American politics is that an overwhelming number of journalists are liberal. For instance, Elaine Povich (1996) reports that only seven percent of all Washington correspondents voted for George Bush in 1992, compared to 37 percent of the American public.1 Lichter, Rothman and Lichter, (1986) and Weaver and Wilhoit (1996) report similar findings for earlier elections.

    Conclusion
    Although we expected to find that most media lean left, we were astounded by the degree. A norm among journalists is to present “both sides of the issue.” Consequently, while we expected members of Congress to cite primarily think tanks that are on the same side of the ideological spectrum as they are, we expected journalists to practice a much more balanced citation practice, even if the journalist’s own ideology opposed the think tanks that he or she is sometimes citing. This was not always the case. Most of the mainstream media outlets that we examined (ie all those besides Drudge Report and Fox News’ Special Report) were closer to the average Democrat in Congress than they were to the median member of the House.
    ——————————————————————————————-

    I CAN POST STUDIES FOR DAYS AND DAYS….but my point is the same. When people like Erkki call me a liar and post their “facts” that prove me wrong I just come back with overwhelming evidence. I maintain a data archive that goes back to 1992 with thousands of articles and documents and studies on hundreds of subjects and it is all at my fingertips. This is but a residue of the evidence that I have maintained just on media bias alone.

    Erkki says that he wasn’t aware of even one serious scholarly study that indicates media bias…… well I have plenty more and thousands of examples at my fingertips.

    It was a pleasure defeating you.

  41. Ryan said

    Craig, even if the Vision isn’t a censored publication, the end product always is grossly imbalanced by conservative writings. As I mentioned before, Chuck’s articles are given a full page, always with headlines meant to imply liberals and democrats are lesser people, or at least lesser citizens. Thats an entire page of ‘Clinton decided not to bother with taking Osama Bin Laden,’ and ‘universities teach less civics because they’re liberal, and liberals can’t teach critical thinking.’ How serious are most moderates going to take something if those are headlining articles? I certainly agree that the Vision is trying to get more balanced writings, but it’s an uphill battle only made more difficult considering the type of material listed above. All you end up getting is liberals who are so angry at being demonized that they are never going to contribute, only return fire directed at them in print.

  42. Ryan said

    I also want to add that I love the phrase, a rat on a cheeto, and am now adding it to my reportoire for future use. Very nice Sam, I’d give you a cheeto but… well… I think a rat got it.

  43. Craig Chamberlin said

    Sam,

    I usually only respond to posts I feel are directed either towards the newsletter or towards myself. Unless, of course, I feel I have something to contribute or find my curiosity peaked. In the instance of A. Reader, It appeared directed towards Chuck – so I left it alone.

    The rumor that this newsletter originally formed out of a Campus Bible group has been roaming around since we began. Mostly because the CBF table was willing to distribute our newsletters when we first got started (since we had no racks). The second most popular (or perhaps the first) is that we started as a direct result of Kinsey Confidential. Both of these rumors are understandable, but false. I was never a part of the campus bible group and we (there were 5 of us at the time) started this newsletter because we thought it would be fun, we are a club after all. We saw it as a good way to get students involved in politics and (more importantly) inform students of campus clubs and events.

    Although many of us weren’t fans of Kinsey, it wasn’t a strong enough dislike to spring us into action. However, since the majority of campus didn’t like it, Kinsey helped our debut on campus quite a bit.

    I wish we could have more “agree to disagree”, but really it is near impossible to mediate on a web based forum – so we’ll just have to let people argue it out until the argument is over (or until one of them gets bored?).

    I had the pleasure of making it to the club council last Friday, so I’m hoping more and more clubs will be sending us event and club information. I’ve had numerous conversations with individuals who feel the same way you do, so you are not alone. I’ve been trying hard to get more diverse writers on staff, as you know, students and professors on campus are very busy and usually don’t have much time to contribute.. which is understandable. I’ll keep trying.

    Thanks for your feedback.

  44. Chuck Norton said

    Test message – Craig I have several posts that I made in several threads that are not appearing – can you fix?

  45. Chuck Norton said

    Ryan said – “Thats an entire page of ‘Clinton decided not to bother with taking Osama Bin Laden,’ and ‘universities teach less civics because they’re liberal, and liberals can’t teach critical thinking.’”

    Ryan, thanks for making my point. Your statement is a mischaracterization of both of my articles. You are a hyper-partisan, you lack the critical thinking skills to engage my arguments and facts directly and honestly, and as a result of the two, instead of describing the point of my two articles accurately, you mischaracterized them in a most dishonest manner. With habits like that, you have emulated exactly the type of people that have caused the problem that I pointed out in my article.

    Again Ryan if I am so wrong, why is it that you never seem to post any honest arguments with verifiable refutation, after all if my work is so wrong and so bad it should be easy right? Instead its always the smear.

    I have news for you Ryan, hate is not a family value.

  46. Craig Chamberlin said

    Chuck,

    The posts should be there now. Many people will find this humorous, for some reason your articles sometimes fall under the ‘require moderation’ section of the weblog. I’ve gone through them and can’t see why the system would require they get moderated, but for some reason, it says they do… haha.. anyhoo.. maybe the weblog doesn’t like aggressive words.

    So far you are the only one who has fallen under this ‘require moderation’… maybe it’s a conspiracy against you from wordpress? Hmm…

    Also, since you are here, just thought I’d let you know using words like hyper-partisian are, in themselves, partisian. It would be like me telling someone who disagrees with me they are an idiot, they probably will not take me very seriously will they? Just a suggestion.

    Talk to you later.

  47. Chuck Norton said

    Thanks Craig, your suggestion has been noted and rejected. By your explanation it seems that you have mis-understood why I use the term, of course you could have just asked me why I use the term instead of just making an assumption.

    Hyper-partisan is a perfect word to describe the non-sense I see here by some people.

    There are some people, who all they do is attack based on a strict ideology that reality cannot penetrate. For example – I post facts, that are varifiable – as a result do those who I call hyper-partisans make real attempts at serious refutation by posting good varifiable evidence and having a constructive argument? The answer is clearly no, instead they go on the attack and wage a smear campaign of sorts, call names etc etc.

    Some people on the far left and far right, are so bound by thier ideology, that they hate anyone who can effectively challenge it. Their ideology over time, starts to become their reality and when real life facts start to intrude, to them its reality and the facts and those who voice them, that must be destroyed. Noam Chompsky is the poster boy for exaclt this type of psychological and ethical flaw, but there are some on the right and some conspiracy theorists (Alex Jones) who fall under this category as well.

    That is exactly what I mean about a hyper-partisan. So the term is here to stay.

  48. Chuck Norton said

    Actually Craig, it seems that the posts that have fallen under moderation have several links (for evidence) in them, perhaps that is the issue.

    Thanks for helping, and do me a favor, if you dont agree with or understand why I make an argument or use a term (like hyper partisan) just call me on the phone and ask me to explain it first ~~~ :-)

    If you dont understand than it stands to reason that there is a chance that others might not either so it gives me a good opportunity to clarify and define.

  49. Chuck Norton said

    One more thing when it comes to hyper-partisans. I am not worried if they “take me seriously” or not. Hyper-partisans by their nature are inconvincible and there is almost no level of evidence that they will accept that can penetrate their ideological bubble that has created much of their perceived reality.

    It’s like Alex Jones, even if a politician does something that is favorable to what he thinks is good policy, it becomes an elaborate dodge to fool people into not thinking that his grand conspiracy doesnt exist…… so no matter what anyone in office does, good or bad, right or wrong, it means just that much more that they are a part of the conspiracy.

    Hyper-partisans do serve a purpose however. There is utility in pointing out their tactics and defeating their arguments. They also stand as an example to those who arent hyper-partisan as to what the “nuts” are saying and doing.

    In fact, I am going to do an article on hyper-partisans in the near future.

    Thanks for giving me this idea Craig, you rock!

  50. Craig Chamberlin said

    I can see your point in using the term hyper-partisian. However, as a moderate, when name-dropping is used in politics it tends to have the opposite effect (almost 100% of the time). Since politics are what I refer to as hyper-sensitive issues along with religion and sex, it is hard to get individuals to sincerely listen to you because we all have such staunch beliefs in regards to them.

    This is why I threw my recommendation your way, since most individuals (unlike yourself) are hyper-sensitive to politics, name-dropping even the opposing viewpoint or anyone who may disagree with you tends to disinterest them in what you have to say.

    This merely has been my observations and experience, but keep on Chuckin’. And let me know when you’re done with that Cheetoe. I’m hungry…

  51. Erkki KochKetola said

    Chuck:

    I suggest that you write this article on yourself. You don’t need to do any research that way.

  52. Rachel Custer said

    Sam,

    I agree with you. There are a lot of conservative opinions flying around on our blog. However, the Vision is primarily a printed newsletter distributed on campus, supplemented by this blog where, by definition, people usually express their opinions. It happens that there are some conservatives entering opinions on the blog, but does that necessarily translate to a completely biased printed product? As you only seem to refer to the blog, have you ever read our printed publication? We try to focus mostly on campus events and clubs. Then, of course, opinions come out on the blogs…and people tend to write more comments on the more controversial articles. However, in our printed newsletter, I feel we try to focus mostly on the campus.

    Also, we have repeatedly asked people with more liberal viewpoints to write articles for us, whether they be opinion pieces or refutations of articles written by more conservative columnists. Many people who seem to be happy to come on the blog and say we don’t have enough liberal representation don’t seem to want to write for us when we ask them. Perhaps you would like to write for us? (This is not an offer…I am not technically authorized to make them, but I’ve seen several of Craig’s posts and believe he and Jarrod would be happy to consider having you write something.) Anyway, I just wanted to clear those things up. I hope you have found my comments helpful. Thank you for your input.

    Rachel Custer

  53. Ryan said

    Chuck, I have more than once offered plenty of evidence against your claims. Your general response tends to be completly ignoring it, resorting to personal attacks, or your love of the word ‘hyperpartisan.’

    You often claim to eb non-biased and equally critical of the right. Here’s a challenge, live up to it. Write materials on the GOP from time to time, and shortcomings of conservative ideology, for it has many. Just like liberal ideology.

    But you can’t and you won’t. Because you are incapable of the same critical thinking you were accusing liberals of in your civics article. When presented with all the list of steps Clinton took to catch Osama and the GOP’s repeated work aginst him there, you ignored it. When given the timeline and facts on the Valerie Plame affair, you articulated a vast and baseless conspiracy theory. So show us your “non-partisan” writings. Write an article on the President showing his abject incompetence since 9-11. Or on the Foley scandal and the GOP’s refusal to act after 3 seperate warnings over the years.

    I have no problems taking the side of the GOP when they’re right. That should be evidenced from my initial support of the war, and other GOP policies that have been since horribly bungled. Unlike you, however, I can see when failure is so absolute that leadership changes are needed. So feel free to keep up your personal attacks. I know its just a result of someone exposing your pseudo-factual writing style. Haven’t ahd a chance to look at your economic article yet, been too busy. BUt I’ll get to it soon enough. : )

  54. Bret Matix said

    I just think it should be pointed out that the Vision’s weblog is absolutely killing the other weblogs on campus. The American Democracy Projects weblog does not see the traffic that this one does and the pitiful duplication of the Vision’s website belonging to the Preface only has two comments. :) By the way, has anyone noticed that the Preface’s website looks exactly, I mean exactly like the Vision’s?

  55. Andrew said

    a) While I’m not certain, this configuration of WordPress is probably canned. Anyone can make something similar without a great deal of effort.

    b) the preface has at least 5 comments. find Chuck’s letter to the editor; it’s hilarious.

  56. Craig Chamberlin said

    Andrew,

    WordPress indeed comes canned and is very user friendly. This helps with the managment. There are a number of different themes to choose from (e.g. website structure and presentation) and to change the theme it only takes a few clicks. Also, the same color scheme (red and white) can be applied to each theme.

    I was happy to see The Preface adopt WordPress. I very much recommend individuals seeking to start their own weblog check it out. I’m sure we aren’t the first to take advantage of its simplicity and power. I was confused to see them adopt the same website structure though, there are over 15 to choose from. *shrugs* It’s not that big of a deal to me, I’m just happy to see them adopt a feedback system, it has helped us quite a bit. I’m sure they will be happy they did.

  57. Andrew said

    The preface hasn’t adopted this completely; they’re missing a new comments hotlinker, which is quite handy.

    I don’t mean to knock the design skills of your staff, btw; the /~sbvision page looks pretty sharp.

  58. Craig Chamberlin said

    Andrew,

    Yeah… now only if I could keep it up to date : ).

  59. Jason said

    Craig,

    You might want to mention to the webmaster that if you click on the current issue link from the home page, it takes you to like some old issue. Just FYI

  60. Rachel Custer said

    Bret,

    Thanks for the kind comments. I personally always appreciate that kind of feedback, and I’m sure other members of the Vision staff do as well.

    Rachel

  61. Sam said

    Rachel,

    Wanted to say thanks for your kind response to something I wrote sometime back.

    I could see writing a pro-evolution piece (not to be confused with a pro-atheist piece… I fear such confusion may run rampant up there, unfortunately).

    Have done a fair amount of professional writing in my career, but nothing in the political or social contexts.

    In any event, I appreciated your feedback.

    Sam

  62. Rachel Custer said

    Sam,

    Happy to help.

    Rachel :)

  63. Andrew Filmer said

    This is in response to Erkki’s comments in this thread:

    https://iusbvision.wordpress.com/2006/11/21/when-freedom-meets-responsibility/#comment-1538

    Erkki,

    ————————————
    In response to: “Do you want to strive for the same sort of false ‘balance’ that the mainstream media provides?”
    ————————————

    For the record, while others may criticize your choice of syllable-heavy terms, it is your choice of the single-syllable “you” that has made this debate personal. So be it.

    No, I do not aim to imitate the kind of false balance mentioned. With my Vision colleagues, intend to do far better: to promote a real balance.

    I am more than aware of the kind of false balance that exists in the mainstream media. I daresay I know your argument better than you: most papers use “alternative” sources to make an article seem balanced, making its end argument (though biased) seem more credible. Advertisers and ownership are far smaller factors in relation.

    In any case, the Vision has no worries about its advertising or its ownership, which makes the point negligible.

    Furthermore, the Vision has put in Ryan Hill’s articles with no censorship, allowing his final arguments to be spoken as he intended.

    Campus publications should be an arena where we strive to be as close to journalistic ideals as possible.

    Just because the mainstream media misuses balance does not mean that the concept of balance itself is flawed. The Vision tries to represent more than one viewpoint because it makes the publication more inclusive of the total readership. Not for sales, and not for advertising: we do not get paid, and we write because we enjoy the writing process and and take pride in its product.

    Our only motive for striving for balance is this: it makes for a better publication; it makes for better reading. If all campus publications (and by that I mean not only our campus) strive for ideals, perhaps some of those will end up in the mainstream media.

    Maybe not, but your fatalistic perspective certainly has no hope of improving the state of the media today.

    I have the right to be idealistic. You have the right not to read the publication I serve.

    ———————————-
    “Objectivity? What exactly do we mean by this? Writers have cognitive biases which filter both the story-selection and the writing processes, restricting the possible range of attitudes that the writer will attempt to cultivate in their readers.”
    ————————————

    I see you have a penchant for using wide concepts to illustrate a specific point. The “mainstream media” are faulty so why should campuses bother… “writers” are flawed so why bother with objectivity… A clever technique, at least until someone notices.

    Objectivity in regards to the Vision is judging an news event for what it is, making an effort not to be swayed by personal opinions. Editorials and columns are a different thing entirely. In my original post I said, “I take pride in our publication’s efforts towards a more balanced and objective stance”. This is a learning process and I am confident we are making significant strides foward. We are not perfect, but as Chuck once mentioned to me, if you’re going to make mistakes, now is the time to do it, when you’re a student, and learn from it.

    Erkki, find me an instance when I have not written objectively on a news event. If you can do so convincingly, I promise to learn from it. If not, well, then I think you should take a step back and think before you type.

    ————————————
    “They’ll strive for a ‘balance’ and an “objectivity” which will ultimately be a caricature of both.”
    ————————————

    To strive for neither, on the other hand, sums up the spirit of your argument.

    Pardon me if I learn NOT to do that.

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