March 9, 2018

NARRATIVE-MAKING, SELECTIVE FACTS AND BIAS: The Los Angeles Times has an overview about billionaire Vinod Khosla’s legal battle to prevent public access to the beach on his California property. The paper notes that “The California Coastal Act for decades has scaled back mega-hotels, protected wetlands and, above all, declared that access to the beach was a fundamental right guaranteed to everyone.”

The newspaper goes on to point out that:

He has defended a number of conservative positions, such as arguing against same-sex marriage and leading the legal challenge against President Obama’s Affordable Care Act.

So, perpetuating a popular narrative, obviously this is yet another conservative fatcat being greedy, denying fundamental rights and just generally being a bad, bad man. What Rosanna Xia, who covers the environmental beat for the paper forgot/missed/hid from the public (take your pick) is something that took literally 2 minutes to find out: Khosla and his companies have donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to a wide range of Democratic PAC’s and candidates over the years, including Al Franken, Nancy Pelosi, the Democratic Party of Virginia and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, according to Federal Election Commission records.

It’s not uncommon for the wealthy to hedge their bets and throw money at both parties, but the Times does a disservice by not including this fact. Laziness, rush of the deadline, or purposeful avoidance: you be the judge. But it’s clear in whatever excuse is applied that what you leave out is often as important as what you say.

 

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