the bias of investigative journalism

In the US, left-wing political pundits and reporters often defend themselves from conservative critics by pointing out that facts, not their reporting, have a liberal bias. (Here liberal is used in the North American sense of non-conservative or the more contentious ‘progressive’ rather than the European sense of right-wing.)

Investigative journalism is a scarce resource these days. I value it increasingly highly, but have only just noticed that this may be due to the fact that I almost always agree with the results of the investigation. Why is that?

Does investigative journalism have a progressive bias?

“Yes,” I’d argue. The status quo seems to be inherently corrupt and ripe for public scrutiny. The entire idea of progressivism is to progress, surely – to self-improve from what we currently have and are. So long as the status quo can be criticised it can, and often is, glossed over and protected by the powers that be from such criticism. Hence, the object of conservatism – business as usual – lends itself to the critical eye of investigative journalists. And they will always find something damning.

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