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Archive for the 'Media Bias 2008' Category

November 6th 2008

Media Bias #104

One Last Swipe By The MSM

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nable to turn off their rancor that someone would have the audacity to run against The One, the media spent the day after the election preparing hit pieces on the McCain Campaign.

The NY Times led the pack, sending investigators to cozy up to sources within the campaign so it could balance the glorification of Obama with Internal Battled Divided McCain and Palin Camps. This source speculation made headlines while the story we all know is true – that Biden was so mistrusted by the Obama campaign that they muzzled him – went unreported.

Newsweek decided now was a good time to report further on Palin’s clothing purchases – and one time when she met campaign staffers fresh from a shower in a towel (reported elsewhere as a bathrobe).

CNN chimed in with Sources: McCain Aid Fired for Trashing Staff, in which we learn Randy Scheunemann, a senior foreign policy adviser to John McCain, was tanked for “positioning himself with Palin at the expense of John McCain’s campaign message.”

Isn’t it odd that a foreign policy specialist would side with Palin if, as Fox News (yes Fox News) broadcast Chief Political Correspondent Carl Cameron saying there was great concern within the McCain campaign that Palin lacked “a degree of knowledgeability” in world geography.

“Absolutely disgusting,” says Michelle Malkin. Yup. That pretty much sums up the entire Media Bias 2008 experience.

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November 4th 2008

Media Bias #103

Convicted By What They Didn’t Cover

OK, election day quiz:  Did you know that Barack Obama spent three weeks in Pakistan during his college years?

I didn’t, at least not until yesterday when I read it on a blog, Locomotive Breath 1901.  I’ll be fair to the media on this one, though, the NYT did cover it – once - on April 10, 2008:

During the speech, Mr. Obama also spoke about having traveled to Pakistan in the early 1980s. Because of that trip, which he did not mention in either of his autobiographical books, “I knew what Sunni and Shia was before I joined the Senate Foreign Relations Committee,” he said.

Then, the final paragraphs of the story:

According to his campaign staff, Mr. Obama visited Pakistan in 1981, on the way back from Indonesia, where his mother and half-sister, Maya Soetoro-Ng, were living. He spent “about three weeks” there, Mr. Obama’s press secretary, Bill Burton, said, staying in Karachi with the family of a college friend, Mohammed Hasan Chandoo, but also traveling to Hyderabad, in India.

Mr. Obama appears not to have previously cited his travel in Pakistan in speeches during the campaign. In “Dreams from My Father,” he talks of having a Pakistani roommate when he moved to New York, a man he calls Sadik who “had overstayed his tourist visa and now made a living in New York’s high-turnover, illegal immigrant work force, waiting on tables.”

Mr. Obama, the campaign and his publisher have not provided any details about the identity of Sadik.

During his years at Occidental College, Mr. Obama also befriended Wahid Hamid, a fellow student who was an immigrant from Pakistan and traveled with Mr. Obama there, the Obama campaign said. Mr. Hamid is now a vice president at Pepsico in New York, and according to public records, has donated the maximum $2,300 to the Obama campaign and is listed as a fund-raiser for it.

Mr. Chandoo is now a self-employed financial consultant, living in Armonk, N.Y. He has also donated the maximum, $2,300, to Mr. Obama’s primary campaign and an additional $309 for the general election, campaign finance records show.

Now, Pakistan is I’m sure a fine place to spend three weeks; a lot of young men from all over the world do that, visiting madrassa and learning the ways of jihad.  One could go to Pakistan for three weeks and not learn the difference between Shi’a and Sunni because the country is overwhelmingly Sunni (75% vs 20%), so unless he was getting some education while there, he might not have become aware of the differences.

The NYT report gives us no information at all about what Obama did during his three weeks there; it sheds no light on why the trip is missing from his books; it looks no further into Mr. Chandoo (let’s excuse Mr. Hamid; there are probably no jihadist VPs and Pepsico).

The Revolutionary Political Blog did dig into Chandoo.  It didn’t find an Islamist jihadist, but did find a Bush-hating bundler for Obama.  It’s not significant in the scheme of the election, except that it shows that a same media that dug through Joe the Plumber’s and Sarah Palin’s garbage in search of anything negative couldn’t bother itself following a clear news lead on the Obama side.

Besides Obama’s Magical Madrassa Tour, here are a few other stories the media did not bother covering this election:

* Occidental College records — Not released
* Columbia College records — Not released
* Columbia Thesis paper — ‘not available’
* Harvard College records — Not released
* Medical records — Not released
* Illinois State Senate schedule — ‘not available’
* Law practice client list — Not released
* Harvard Law Review articles published — None
* University of Chicago scholarly articles — None
* Illinois State Senate records—’not available’

And let’s not forget his campaign donor information, especially with all the questions that have been raised about illegal foreign donations and fraudulent credit card donations.

Not released?  Why not?  Not available?  Did you ask twice?

Did the media ask why all of this is locked up, even public records like the Illinois State Senate records and schedules?  Did they dig?  Did they take a librarian or campaign worker to dinner? Did they call a source or two?

No, they did not because this was the year any hint of objectivity died.

Media Bias 2008 covers pro-Obama media bias. Items are listed from most recent to oldest; the numbering reflects this and is not a ranking. Send Media Bias 2008 examples via “comments”‘ below, or to email2laer [@] yahoo [dot] com.

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October 31st 2008

Media Bias #102

Of Course The LA Times Can Hold Khalidi Tape – WaPo

The editorial writers at the Washington Post have completely dispensed with debate. No longer is there a pretense from them that facts are needed to prove their position; no longer are efforts required to rebut the other side. When it comes to Obama, no debate is needed. He wins, the other guy loses. ‘Nuff said.

This time, it’s today’s editorial, none too subtly named An ‘Idiot Wind’ (how nice of them to put quotes around ‘idiot’). It attacks the McCain campaign for discussing the association between Obama and Rashid Khalidi, and the sequestered LA Times tape. Here’s what WaPo has to say about the latter:

To further argue that the Times, which obtained the tape from a source in exchange for a promise not to publicly release it, is trying to hide something is simply ludicrous, as Mr. McCain surely knows.

That’s it. Certainly, WaPo could rightly argue that breaking a promise to a source is a ludicrous proposition, but to say that the tape contains nothing damning even though they’ve never seen it – now that’s ludicrous! It the sort of thing someone covering their ears and screaming “I can’t hear you! I can’t hear you!” would do.

Hmmm.

And of the questions McCain has raised about Khalidi and Obama?

We did ask Mr. Khalidi whether he wanted to respond to the campaign charges against him. He answered, via e-mail, that “I will stick to my policy of letting this idiot wind blow over.” That’s good advice for anyone still listening to the McCain campaign’s increasingly reckless ad hominem attacks. Sadly, that wind is likely to keep blowing for four more days.

Now shut up. Your concerns have been settled for you by those who know more than you.

Media Bias 2008 covers pro-Obama media bias. Items are listed from most recent to oldest; the numbering reflects this and is not a ranking. Send Media Bias 2008 examples via “comments”‘ below, or to email2laer [@] yahoo [dot] com.

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October 29th 2008

Media Bias #101

WaPo Excuses Obama As It Breaks Bad Donations Story

With the media asleep at the wheel, this election has seen the blogosphere (and some magazines) doing the job of the MSM in investigating Obama. Wright, Ayres, socialist leanings … all have been well reported in the blogs well before the media has turned its attention to them.

Now it’s happened again with Obama’s shameful and dishonest on-line donations system. After batting around the blogosphere for a couple weeks, the Washington Post finally got around to reporting on it this morning – on page 2, not page 1:

Sen. Barack Obama’s presidential campaign is allowing donors to use largely untraceable prepaid credit cards that could potentially be used to evade limits on how much an individual is legally allowed to give or to mask a contributor’s identity, campaign officials confirmed.

I would have used “admitted,” but WaPo chose the more sterile “confirmed,” but the paper pretty much gets through one paragraph OK. Then objectivity ends:

Faced with a huge influx of donations over the Internet, the campaign has also chosen not to use basic security measures to prevent potentially illegal or anonymous contributions from flowing into its accounts, aides acknowledged. Instead, the campaign is scrutinizing its books for improper donations after the money has been deposited.

The Obama organization said its extensive review has ensured that the campaign has refunded any improper contributions, and noted that Federal Election Commission rules do not require front-end screening of donations.

“Faced with a huge influx of donations” is the Obama excuse, and it takes WaPo just 43 words to give the campaign a pass for its near-criminal behavior. The theme continues hot and heavy throughout the reporting – but it’s a fake. High volume internet sales operations are able to follow correct procedures, and there’s not excuse for the Obama campaign not doing the same. Note also that the aides are “acknowledging;” they’re still not “admitting,” and that the report is piling on the excuses heavy, with later scrutinization and FEC regs.

Even WaPo can’t keep its face straight forever and finally, after the jump, it admits that the Obama excuse is a fraud:

Juan Proaño, whose technology firm handled online contributions for John Edwards’s [sic] presidential primary campaign, and for John F. Kerry’s presidential campaign and the Democratic National Committee in 2004, said it is possible to require donors’ names and addresses to match those on their credit card accounts. But, he said, some campaigns are reluctant to impose that extra layer of security.

It takes nine paragraphs for WaPo to reveal how bad the fraud is:

The Obama team’s disclosures came in response to questions from The Washington Post about the case of Mary T. Biskup, a retired insurance manager from Manchester, Mo., who turned up on Obama’s FEC reports as having donated $174,800 to the campaign. Contributors are limited to giving $2,300 for the general election.

Biskup, who had scores of Obama contributions attributed to her, said in an interview that she never donated to the candidate. “That’s an error,” she said. Moreover, she added, her credit card was never billed for the donations, meaning someone appropriated her name and made the contributions with another card.

Mary T. Biskup would have been the lead if it was the McCain campaign that was behaving in such a renegade manner.

It takes 17 paragraphs (and a jump) for WaPo to admit that the McCain campaign, unlike Obama’s, has security measures in place – but the scoundrels preface that news with two paragraphs about bad contributions slipping through – without ever comparing the scale!

Do you think for one moment this would have been the tone of the piece were the campaigns reversed?

Media Bias 2008 covers pro-Obama media bias. Items are listed from most recent to oldest; the numbering reflects this and is not a ranking. Send Media Bias 2008 examples via “comments”‘ below, or to email2laer [@] yahoo [dot] com.

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October 28th 2008

Media Bias #100

It’s The Editors

Michael Malone is one of America’s most respected high-tech reporters, a fourth-generation newsman who “truly bleeds ink when I’m cut.”  Still, he writes at ABC News, this campaign’s election coverage has caused him to hide his true identity:

The sheer bias in the print and television coverage of this election campaign is not just bewildering, but appalling. And over the last few months I’ve found myself slowly moving from shaking my head at the obvious one-sided reporting, to actually shouting at the screen of my television and my laptop computer.

But worst of all, for the last couple weeks, I’ve begun — for the first time in my adult life — to be embarrassed to admit what I do for a living. A few days ago, when asked by a new acquaintance what I did for a living, I replied that I was “a writer,” because I couldn’t bring myself to admit to a stranger that I’m a journalist.

Still, the newshound in Malone can’t allow him to blame the newshounds.  He takes a different perspective:

Furthermore, I also happen to believe that most reporters, whatever their political bias, are human torpedoes … and, had they been unleashed, would have raced in and roughed up the Obama campaign as much as they did McCain’s. That’s what reporters do. I was proud to have been one, and I’m still drawn to a good story, any good story, like a shark to blood in the water.

So why weren’t those legions of hungry reporters set loose on the Obama campaign? Who are the real villains in this story of mainstream media betrayal?

The editors. The men and women you don’t see; the people who not only decide what goes in the paper, but what doesn’t; the managers who give the reporters their assignments and lay out the editorial pages. They are the real culprits.

Why?

Picture yourself in your 50s in a job where you’ve spent 30 years working your way to the top, to the cockpit of power … only to discover that you’re presiding over a dying industry. The Internet and alternative media are stealing your readers, your advertisers and your top young talent. Many of your peers shrewdly took golden parachutes and disappeared. Your job doesn’t have anywhere near the power and influence it did when your started your climb. The Newspaper Guild is too weak to protect you any more, and there is a very good chance you’ll lose your job before you cross that finish line, 10 years hence, of retirement and a pension.

In other words, you are facing career catastrophe — and desperate times call for desperate measures. Even if you have to risk everything on a single Hail Mary play. Even if you have to compromise the principles that got you here. After all, newspapers and network news are doomed anyway — all that counts is keeping them on life support until you can retire.

And then the opportunity presents itself — an attractive young candidate whose politics likely matches yours, but more important, he offers the prospect of a transformed Washington with the power to fix everything that has gone wrong in your career.

With luck, this monolithic, single-party government will crush the alternative media via a revived fairness doctrine, re-invigorate unions by getting rid of secret votes, and just maybe be beholden to people like you in the traditional media for getting it there.

It’s all too rational and coordinated, as opposed to the emotional hysteria that’s carried Obama to the brink of the presidency.  Still, Malone presents some interesting fodder.

Media Bias 2008 covers pro-Obama media bias. Items are listed from most recent to oldest; the numbering reflects this and is not a ranking. Send Media Bias 2008 examples via “comments”‘ below, or to email2laer [@] yahoo [dot] com.

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October 27th 2008

Media Bias #99

Numbers Don’t Lie

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ccording to the RCP average, Obama currently enjoys a 50.1 to 43.1 lead – in the polls that is.  In the newspapers, it’s a 194 to 82 lead.  Nationally, a lopsided 194 newspapers have endorsed Obama and only 82 have endorsed McCain, according to Editor & Publisher’s running tally.

E&P also reports that at least 38 papers that endorsed George W. Bush in 2004 have now switched to Obama, with just four Kerry-endorsers flipping to McCain.

In 2004, John Kerry barely edged out George W. Bush in endorsements, 213 to 205.  Kerry may have been an inept campaigner who overstated his war heroism, but he clearly had experience in foreign policy and congressional matters.  And yes, he was running against an incumbent, but not a particularly popular one, so an even edge seems fair enough, especially compared to this year’s editorials.

Every single one of those 194 pro-Obama editorials has had to overlook his associations with terrorists, racists and scoundrels.  They’ve had to excuse his pathetically short, totally one-sided voting record and somehow buy into him as one who can bring the two parties together.  They would have to ignore that he was wrong on the surge, wrong on diplomatic meetings with Iran and other dictators and wrong on NAFTA – and that he could not explain his position on any of his positions. And they would certainly have to ignore the fact that you can’t give 95% of the people a tax cut if fewer than 70% of the people pay taxes.

And they had to choose the hollow mantra of change over a patriot war hero with a solid and well understood voting record.

That they accomplished this complex machination en masse is perhaps the clearest evidence we have seen this entire election of the media’s ongoing heavy lifting for Obama.

Media Bias 2008 covers pro-Obama media bias. Items are listed from most recent to oldest; the numbering reflects this and is not a ranking. Send Media Bias 2008 examples via “comments”‘ below, or to email2laer [@] yahoo [dot] com.

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October 27th 2008

Media Bias #98

Let The People Speak

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ourtesy of Freedom’s Lighthouse, here’s a clip of McCain supporters confronting reporters on their bias. The reporters try to defend their positions – sounding Obamaesque – and are shouted down:

Media Bias 2008 covers pro-Obama media bias. Items are listed from most recent to oldest; the numbering reflects this and is not a ranking. Send Media Bias 2008 examples via “comments”‘ below, or to email2laer [@] yahoo [dot] com.

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October 24th 2008

Media Bias #97

AP Shows No Style In Latest Palin Attack

How long is the list of stories the media will come up with to attack Sarah Palin? While doggedly refusing to investigate the Obama campaign – the media coverage of that campaign reminds me of 10 year old girls on a sleep-over having a pillow fight – they will stop at nothing to bring down Palin. The worst, and latest:

WASHINGTON (AP – the Anti-Palin newswire) – An acclaimed celebrity makeup artist for Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin collected more money from John McCain’s campaign than his foreign policy adviser.

Amy Strozzi, who works on the reality show “So You Think You Can Dance” and has been Palin’s traveling stylist, was paid $22,800, according to campaign finance reports for the first two weeks in October. In contrast, McCain’s foreign policy adviser, Randy Scheunemann, was paid $12,500, the report showed.

While the media can’t seem to find the relevance of Obama’s Band of Merry Socialists, Racists and Terrorists to the campaign, they are certainly capable of finding the relevance of any nasty morsel they find on Palin to the McCain campaign. Let’s dispense with this idiocy in a hurry.

First, AP chose to make this the lead in a story of otherwise significant news about the candidate’s finances. There were several real news leads buried in the story – including the really new news that Obama is feeling cash strapped! – but that negative Obama news is buried under Palin’s make-up.

Second, there is no mention in the story of what Hillary spent on hair styling and make-up, or Michelle Obama, or anyone else for that matter. How much does CBS pay for Katie’s stylists, by the way? Either the McCain campaign is being far too careless about having information like this come out – you know, by honestly filing campaign expense forms and silly stuff like that – or the media isn’t taking time to look at the other campaigns.

Third, Palin’s a chick. People – women – look at her make-up and hair and judge her by it, saying catty stuff if it doesn’t meet their standards. AP should rewrite the story about how sexist America is in giving Obama and McCain a free pass on the work of their stylists while honing in negatively on Palin.

Finally, McCain just doesn’t need foreign policy help like Palin needs styling help (given the negative focus mentioned above). He knows the stuff, and his foreign policy guy can sit in his pajamas at a laptop and take care of business. The American demands on how women look, however, forces Amy Strozzi to travel with Palin, and that travel is the very obvious reason why Strozzi’s bill is higher than Scheunemann’s. Time is money in the consulting biz, folks.

AP and the other anti-Palin media are playing a risky game here. The Pew study of media coverage indicates that the full court negative press on Palin is backfiring and people now are fed up with the media and attracted to the candidate. Incredible Wife is so furious she wants a national boycott of them all, but we can’t quite figure out how that could be pulled off. But the anger is there, it’s palpable, and it gets more intense with each story like this.

But they also know they’re playing to a large, rabid anti-Palin audience that they resonate with. How large? Go to the T-shirt shop Cafe-Press’ “anti-Palin” pages. There are 30 anti-Palin T-shirts per page, and they go on for page after page after page.

Why isn’t the media writing about how America is a sexist nation instead of all the coverage they’re giving racism? Oh, that’s right. The racism stories help Obama.

Media Bias 2008 covers pro-Obama media bias. Items are listed from most recent to oldest; the numbering reflects this and is not a ranking. Send Media Bias 2008 examples via “comments”‘ below, or to email2laer [@] yahoo [dot] com.

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October 23rd 2008

Media Bias #96

Up In Smoke

An old French documentary on Vietnam War POWs has been released, which includes footage of a young John McCain being interviewed from his prison hospital bed.  See the clip here.

The tape shows a young, handsome McCain who relays the story of the crash in terms identical to those he uses today, destroying recent efforts by Leftist revisionists to say his story is a myth.  He is both resolute and emotional, describing his injuries matter of factly.  His humor shows when he tells the film-makers that he’s treated well, “but it’s not Paris,” and his emotions show when he asks the film-makers to assure his wife  he will get better.

The clip brings the war hero to life and replaces the 73 year-old McCain with a guy younger and more handsome than Obama.  The timing of the release is perfect.  So what’s not to like?  Well, says England’s Sky News:

The video portrays the Republican as a hero but the message may be tarnished as he is filmed smoking a cigarette.

I kid you not.  Perhaps they’d like to explain how this young fella got so far:

Media Bias 2008 covers pro-Obama media bias. Items are listed from most recent to oldest; the numbering reflects this and is not a ranking. Send Media Bias 2008 examples via “comments”‘ below, or to email2laer [@] yahoo [dot] com.

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October 22nd 2008

Media Bias #95

CNN Busted Laying Palin Traps

Drew Griffin at CNN used a nasty, childish trick to catch a VP candidate (Sarah Palin,  natch) off guard in his interview of her last night, so she’d look unprofessional.  So who’s really unprofessional?

In the interview, Griffin has his guns blasting:

DREW GRIFFIN: Governor, you have been mocked in the press. The press has been pretty hard on you. The Democrats have been pretty hard on you, but also some conservatives have been pretty hard on you as well. The National Review had a story saying that, you know, ‘I can’t tell if Sarah Palin is incompetent, stupid, unqualified, corrupt, or all of the above.’

PALIN: Who wrote that one?

GRIFFIN: That — that was in the National Review. I don’t have the author.

PALIN: Who wrote it? I would like to talk to that person.

GRIFFIN: But they were talking about the fact that your experience as governor is not getting out. Do you feel trapped in this campaign, that your message is not getting out, and, if so, who do you blame?

That gave CNN the opportunity to promote the segment, including Palin’s reaction – she leans in and asks who wrote the piece – as a lead-in to a story about how the GOP’s turning against Palin.

Trouble is, the author of the piece, Byron York, isn’t turning against Palin; he’s railing against exactly this kind of crazed, unethical, pro-Obama media coverage.  Here’s what he actually wrote at NRO:

“Watching press coverage of the Republican candidate for vice president, it’s sometimes hard to decide whether Sarah Palin is incompetent, stupid, unqualified, corrupt, backward or – well, all of the above.”

Talk about being mocked by the press. Talk about the press being hard on you.  For more on this story, including clips, see NewsBusters.

Media Bias 2008 covers pro-Obama media bias. Items are listed from most recent to oldest; the numbering reflects this and is not a ranking. Send Media Bias 2008 examples via “comments”‘ below, or to email2laer [@] yahoo [dot] com.

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With Obama winning the presidency by seven percent, we can't blame the media. Their laudatory coverage and refusal to extensively probe into Obama's background and [lack of] experience was at best responsible for five percent of his vote, the pundits tell us. Here is a compilation of over 100 significant instances of pro-Obama/anti-McCain bias during the 2008 campaign.

For all 'Media Bias 2008' – Click Here

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