Time’s 10 Questions with Ariana Huffington


Conservatives complain that the media have a bias to the left. Do you believe that this is true? Mike Kovanda, DAVIS, ILL.

The problem with the media is not that they’re veering to the left or to the right but that they have an addiction to presenting two sides to every issue, even when the truth lies on one side or the other. I’d much rather we make our preferences and points of view transparent than pretend we don’t have them.

How do you think blogs have changed the field of reporting? Rob Opaleski, CHICAGO

First of all, it’s made clear this is a 24/7 operation. Professional journalists have had the opportunity to write about what is happening in real time, which wasn’t happening much before.

Huffington Post blogger Mayhill Fowler reported on two activities, one of which reporters were not invited to, at the other of which she did not state she was a newsperson. Is this the proper way to do business? Bernard Awtrey NEWTON, MASS.

The Obama fund raiser was clearly not off-the-record. The Clinton rope line was a public event. These are really the new rules of engagement. Citizen journalists are expanding the coverage of campaigns.

What is the biggest story that the traditional media have completely ignored? Kevin Judge, CHAPEL HILL, N.C.

Here’s an interesting thing about the traditional media: very often they break great stories, and then they ignore them. It takes the blogosphere to pursue the story, to do all the things that turn a story into a major event.

Why did you make the transition from conservative to liberal? Paul Hoehne, OAKTON, VA.

I left the Republican Party [because] my views of the role of government changed. I used to think that the private sector would solve many of the major problems we are facing–poverty, inequality. And then I saw firsthand that this wasn’t going to happen.

Do you consider yourself a Democrat now or an independent? Lainey Sickinger RENTON, WASH.

I consider myself a Democrat, because although I would love to see third parties thrive in America, I recognize that’s not going to happen in 2008.

What can liberal politicians learn from Republican tactics? Jack Bini, NEW YORK CITY

Go after your opponent’s strengths. That was Karl Rove’s great gift to the Republican Party. If we translate that into Barack Obama’s campaign, it would mean recognizing John McCain’s strength is the perception he would be better for our national security, and Obama needs to go after that.

Do you think there is room today for a politician to change positions without being referred to as a flip-flopper? Jose Rodriguez, WASHINGTON

Absolutely. If circumstances change and new evidence is made available, I think it’s important for a politician to be able to say transparently, I’m changing my position because of X, Y or Z. Very often politicians like to seamlessly move to a new position without really explaining that it is a changed position.

How has your personal immigrant experience shaped your understanding of America? John L. Chapman SAN PEDRO, CALIF.

I’m very grateful that this is my home. As an immigrant, I see immigration as an essential part of this country, and that’s why I’m very troubled when immigrants are demonized.

Would you ever consider running for public office again? Ken Volok SANTA BARBARA, CALIF.

No. I love my day job.

Video at Time.com To watch a video interview with Arianna Huffington and to subscribe to the 10 Questions podcast on iTunes, go to time.com/10questions


~ by avantdeb on August 5, 2008.

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