The PBS NewsHour News Format
The concept of anything being perfect will never occur, thus it is necessary to support that which is the best of what is available.
At this time I believe the NewsHour News Format to be the best available. That format is basically; 1) a news summary, 2) a news story debate by a pro and a con moderated by a NewsHour person, and 3) some final commentary.
The best part of this format is that there is a debate by a person on both sides of an issue so that both sides get representation instead of the journalist making a decision and presenting only one side of the story.
There are still many weaknesses with the NewsHour News Format.
1) The debate should be between two people that represent both sides of the issue. If the NewsHour stacks the debate toward one side or the other, then this is no better than the ABC, NBC and CBS one sided presentation of their opinion of the world. Too often I see the NewsHour get people from the Washington, DC area. I would suggest a much wider selection.
2) The moderator must be very careful not to bias the debate by showing favoritism to one side or the other. If favoritism is shown by the moderator it will be difficult to get people to go in the show. A lot of good people do not get involved with the news media because the news media purposely makes them look bad so the other side of the issue (the side the news media supports) wins. If a person knows there opinion will be respected, I believe there could be some very interesting dialog.
3) The final commentary should be between equally qualified people. Mark Shields is the perfect liberal democrat and I believe the NewsHour prevents good Republican people from the discussion to make sure Mark Shields and the democrats control the agenda.
There are still many people at PBS who are so biased it is silly. Guen Ifill is so liberal it is pitiful. Mark Shields is a raving liberal democrat. Bill Moyer is a confused Christian that has been led astray by the liberals.
There are no conservative commentary show on PBS. The only one that got started, "The Wall Street Review" was quickly canceled. The liberal commentary shows are, Washington Week, NOW, McLaughlin Group, To the Contrary, etc. Charlie Rose does at least present many people and different views, but Charlie is so anti Iraq War it is pitiful.
PBS does have some excellent shows. Frontline and NOVA are excellent. NATURE is a good show, but it is so antireligious (evolution) it is pitiful.
I make a final appeal relative to fairness, and that is that religious people be included in all discussions. The news media has driven religious people out of the market place of ideas, but religion is an absolute essential to a sane civil society. The Iraq War is poorly understood because the news media does not understand the religious background.
Actually, the news media has driven many people out of the market place of ideas. I have seen journalists absolutely degrade people that present views that the journalists did not agree with. Sooner or later most Christians, conservatives and Republicans just avoid the news media and do not participate in the debate.
I believe the best choice for America is Democracy, Christianity and Capitalism. An essential part of the survival of America is an unbiased honest news media. The NewsHour News Format is the best that is available for now.