Reporting on politics – A Textbook
There are two types of political journalists. One is the investigative reporter,digging up stories like Watergate and corruption in governments. The other is the presidents microphone holder, a servant of the authorities writing down all thatcomes from his master’s voice. Most reporters operates between them. Thenewspaper’s economy, the editor’s courage and the journalist’s integrity decides towhich direction the reporter leans.Political journalism is its own genre with a long tradition for observation andreporting on parliaments and governments decision making. «Political reporting»is, by definition, the journalistic monitoring and description of the use of power,managed by the State and its offices, on behalf of the public.Politics often seems to be leaders constantly competing, having conflicts with other partiesor own fractions. The use of power, which should be in favour of the people, often seemsto be a struggle for personal influence.As in other parts of the society - among families as tribes - the deeper meaning of politicalactivity is to distribute and share the national resources and regulate the collective behaviour in the society. The successful realisation of this depend on the existence of sanctions, rewards and penalty. The political reporting is to describe how-when-where-why it is done, and by whom.Without media we would not understand the discussions and decisions taken, and thegovernment would not know about the reactions and the social policies.