As a rule, I am a fan of Washington Post media reporter Howard Kurtz. But not always. Here is how Kurtz began a story on media bias:

“Should Fox News keep relying on a political reporter who privately mocked John Kerry as a well-manicured ’metrosexual’?

“Should MSNBC continue to use a pollster who has worked for prominent Republicans?

“Should the Wall Street Journal deploy an Iraq correspondent who privately described the situation there as ’a foreign policy failure’?
“Should the Nashville Tennessean keep publishing a columnist who accused journalists of distorting news in Iraq without any proof?”

Okay, count ’em — three out of four examples of media bias cited by Kurtz are of conservative bias. Hmmm. Something’s not right here. Could it be…media bias? Kurtz is a terrific reporter, but he’s so surrounded by liberals that he doesn’t see media bias where it is.

Want a real example of media bias? Try the memo written by ABC political director Mark Halperin informing reporters that there are different standards for covering the Bush and Kerry campaigns?

The Drudge Report obtained a copy of the memo in which Halperin “admonishes ABC staff: During coverage of Democrat Kerry and Republican Bush not to ’reflexively and artificially hold both sides ‘equally’ accountable.’”

Drudge notes that the memo “captures Halperin stating how ’Kerry distorts, takes out of context, and mistakes all the time, but these are not central to his efforts to win.’”

“But,” Drudge continues, “Halperin claims that Bush is hoping to ’win the election by destroying Senator Kerry at least partly through distortions.’

“’The current Bush attacks on Kerry involve distortions and taking things out of context in a way that goes beyond what Kerry has done,’ Halperin writes.”

That, mes amis, is media bias.