Archive for the ‘media bias’ Tag

VDH: “The End of Journalism”

Victor Davis Hanson:

Sometime in 2008, journalism as we knew it died, and advocacy media took its place.

we have never quite seen anything like the current media infatuation with Barack Obama, and its collective desire not to raise key issues of concern to the American people. Here were four areas of national interest that were largely ignored.

I’ve listed his four points w/ brief notes.  Read the article to get the story on each one.

  1. Campaign Financing: Imagine the reaction of the New York Times or the Washington Post had John McCain renounced his promise to participate in public campaign financing, proceeded instead to amass $600 million and outraise the publicly financed Barack Obama four-to-one, and begun airing special 30-minute unanswered infomercials during the last week of the campaign.
  2. The VP Candidates: … we are about to elect a vice president about whom we know only that he has been around a long time, but little else — and nothing at all why exactly Joe Biden says the most astounding and often lunatic things.
  3. The Past as Present: Imagine the reaction of CNN or NBC had John McCain’s pastor and spiritual advisor of 20 years been revealed as a white supremacist who damned a multiracial United States, or had he been a close acquaintance until 2005 of an unrepentant terrorist bomber of abortion clinics, or had McCain himself sued to eliminate congressional opponents by challenging the validity of African-American voters who signed petitions, or had both his primary and general election senatorial rivals imploded once their sealed divorce records were mysteriously leaked.
  4. Socialism? Imagine the reaction of NPR and PBS had John McCain advocated something like abolishing all capital gains taxes, or repealing incomes taxes in favor of a national retail sales tax.

There are many other things the media has failed to properly inform the US public of.  A quick list would include things like:

  1. Saddam’s bribery of France, Russia and China to keep himself in power
  2. The Oil-for-Food scandal, which was bigger than Enron and possibly lead to the deaths of half a million Iraqis, but which got extremely little coverage
  3. In Feb. 2003 Hans Blix listed 1000 tons of chemical weapons agent that Saddam declared he had in 1991 but had failed to turn over or prove he had destroyed as an example of what his team was searching for
  4. That a number of foreign intelligence agencies confirmed CIA reports that Saddam had WMDs
  5. That the deputy commander of CentCom, Gen. DeLong, claims we had intelligence assets on the ground before the invasion who saw WMDs being loaded into semi-trailer trucks bound for Syria
  6. Joseph Wilson’s lying in his NYT article and the fact that the Bush administration response was to declassify his testimony to the CIA proving he lied
  7. The actual conditions under which they reported from Iraq during the sanctions period (i.e., they failed to inform us Iraqi intelligence agents were with them constantly, that if they reported negative things about Saddam’s regime they would get kicked out of the country, etc.)

I could keep going, but I’m out of time tonight.

I am Joe the Plumber

I Am Joe

It seems to have caught on a bit.

First thing out of the gate, I’d like to copy a bit (well, almost the whole thing) of Iowahawk’s post on this:

We’ve all witnessed a lot of insanity in American politics over the last few years. Up until the last few days, none of it has seriously bothered me; hey, just more grist for the satire mill. But after witnessing the media’s blitzkreig on Joe ‘the Plumber’ Wurzelbacher, I can only muster anger, and no small amount of fear.

Politicians — Sarah Palin, Bill Clinton, et al. —  obviously have to put up with some rude, nasty shit, but it’s  right there in the jobs description. Joe the Plumber is different. He was a guy tossing a football with his kid in the front yard of his $125,000 house when a politician picked him out as a prop for a 30 second newsbite for the cable news cameras. Joe simply had the temerity to speak truth (or, if you prefer, an uninformed opinion) to power, for which the politico-media axis apparently determined that he must be humiliated, harassed, smashed, destroyed. The viciousness and glee with which they set about the task ought to concern anyone who still cares about citizen participation, and freedom of speech, and all that old crap they taught in Civics class before politics turned into Narrative Deathrace 3000, and Web 2.0 turned into Berlin 1932.0.

Godwin’s Law! you say? if the jackboot fits, wear it.

If it’s meta-memes and meta-meta-narratives these media headlice want, so be it. I hope you will join me in expressing a simple bit of solidarity with this guy, Spartacus style. I AM JOE. I am a Wal Mart schlub in flyover country who changes my own oil and unclogs drains without a license. I smoke and drink beer and toss the football in the front yard with my kid, and I figure I can fend my way without handouts from some Magic Messiah’s candy bags. Most everyone in my family and most everyone I grew up with is another Joe, and if you screw with them, you screw with me.

Amen, brother.

Volokh Conspiracy:

I was stunned to see some document showing Joe the Plumbers’ tax problems on my 10pm (CT)newscast on the local NBC affiliate in Chicago on Thursday night. They have very little time for any national news and they actually spent time on Joe the Plumbers’ tax problems. Amazing!

But when an actual candidate — Barack Obama — released his tax returns, which on their face seemed to show an ethics violation of Illinois law, the press couldn’t care less.

Just to remind you, Illinois prohibits state legislators from taking speaking fees, and Barack reported “speaking fees.”

CNN:

At a rally in Melbourne, Florida Friday evening, Senator McCain revealed he had called Joe Wurzelbacher.

“I talked to him this morning for the first time ever,” said McCain. “And I want to tell you his sprits [sic] are good and he’s a tough guy. He is what small business people all over this country are all about. They are tough and they are good and they want to get ahead and they want to keep their money.”

McCain did apologize to the Ohio resident for thrusting him into the media spotlight on the night of the debate according to McCain press secretary Brooke Buchanan.

Buchanan did say that the Arizona Senator invited Ohio’s most famous voter to meet up with the campaign but did not set up any specific stops.

Whether Joe is there in person or not, he is certainly a star at McCain events. …

And the crowd definitely seemed to be full of Joe supporters as well as John supporters, with people at the Melbourne rally were wearing tee shirts with a picture of a name tag on them that said, “My name is … Joe the Plumber” and holding signs about Joe like one on stage that said, “Joe’s dough, not Obama’s.”

But CNN’s Anderson Cooper is an idiot in this video.  He objects that Joe’s first name is really Sam and that he’s not a licensed plumber, so one CNN analyst he interviews call him ‘Sam the non-plumber’ and the other interviewees carry the joke.  Anderson notes Joe doesn’t make anywhere near $250,000 a year.  Never mind that Joe is actually employed as a plumber in an apprenticeship program, that a license isn’t required, and that Joe’s point was he wanted to buy a company that made $250,000 or so.  So Cooper is basically an idiot.  I wonder if Anderson Cooper is a licensed journalist?  If not, can we then call him Andy the non-journalist?

K. Daniel Glover at Video Done Right, in an excellent story on this:

Expect more of the same over coming days. In fact, don’t be surprised if all of those investigative reporters sent to Alaska after John McCain chose Sarah Palin as his running mate suddenly get reassigned to the plumber beat in flyover country. Joe The Plumber must be discredited at all costs!

Ed Morrissey at Hot Air:

So what have we learned from this episode?

  1. Thou shalt not offend The One by asking him a question.  Of any kind.
  2. Anyone who questions The One will have to undergo a public pillorying of a kind unseen since the Red Scare, or perhaps the Inquisition.
  3. The Tanning-Bed Media will happily participate in any inquisition, as long as it keeps them from investigating irrelevant issues like Obama’s ties to the Chicago Machine, William Ayers, ACORN, or his record on protecting infanticide.

Don’t ask questions. Don’t check the records of people running for political office, but do check the records of those who dare violate Rule #1.  No dissent will be tolerated.  Our political and media masters have spoken.

I only ask one favor of the Left and the media: please keep this story alive for another three weeks.  I can’t wait to read Michelle’s column tomorrow.

Free Republic.

But, because Joe the Plumber, a regular every-day Amereican playing catch with his child on a middle class American street, trying to earn a living for his family, was honest about the impact of the Obama plans from his perspective, and because he did not drink the Obama kool-aid, the MSM, the DNC, and the Obama campaign now consider that hard working, well spoken, young man as the enemy.

The truth is that the left, the Obama campaign, the DNC, and the MSM will lie, fabricate, misquote, commit fruad, beg, borrow, or steal in their effort to slow down what is happening on the ground with the McCain campaign right now, and particularly with the likes of Joe and especially Sarah Palin who is burrowing underneath all of their hype and drawing 25-30,000 people at a time to her rallies and getting the message of hope and conservative values out.

Jill Zuckman at the Tribune’s Washington Bureau:

Sen. John McCain offered a vigorous defense of Joe the Plumber today, accusing Barack Obama’s campaign of “digging through his personal life” because he asked Obama a tough question.

“I think Senator Obama could use a few more tough questions,” McCain said.

Joe Wurzelbacher, the plumber who questioned Obama about taxes in Holland, Ohio, turns out to owe back taxes and not hold a license for his plumbing work, according to news reports.

“The response from Senator Obama and his campaign yesterday was to attack Joe. People are digging through his personal life and he has TV crews camped out in front of his house,” McCain told a rowdy crowd at Florida International University. “He didn’t ask for Senator Obama to come to his house. He wasn’t recruited or prompted by our campaign. He just asked a question. And Americans ought to be able to ask Senator Obama tough questions without being smeared and targeted with political attacks.”

Good Morning America interviews Joe.

Copious Dissent has video of Bill Maher accusing Joe of racism.

Gateway Pundit links a YouTube video he says shows Joe’s reaction to the presidential debate, but YouTube says it’s no longer available.

Here’s a couple more Joe links, just for good measure:

Firefighter blog

Ace of Spades with an appropriate Photoshop.

ABC & Charlie Gibson* Lie To Hurt Palin

This screenshot says a lot:

ABC ad misleadingly suggests Palin thinks Iraq War is a holy war.

ABC ad misleadingly suggests Palin thinks Iraq War is a holy war.

The link is to the site I found the ad on, and there the ad links to a video of Charlie Gibson* slicing and dicing a prayer Palin gave in order to make it seem she believes Iraq is a task from God, when what she actually said was, “Pray that …” Rangel is lying scum, or a useful idiot.

Update: DANG did I screw up that headline! The interviewer was Charlie Gibson, not Rangel, as I had originally put. Hey, at least I didn’t just change it and move on as if nothing had happened, as ABC did earlier. That’ll teach me for posting before coffee. Mr. Rangel, I sincerely apologize for my mistake.

Also, while this pic seems to have only incensed (or been noticed by) me, the intertubes seem to be on fire with the topic. Here’s an op-ed in the NY Post noting the bias, and even TalkLeft mentions it. Of course, it’s everywhere. These are just two I thought were interesting.

Update (9/14/08): I wasn’t the only one who noticed.

Also, the Anchoress has an excellent comparison of Gibson’s softball interview with Obama and his hardball interview of Palin, along with takedowns of Newsweek and Whoopi Goldberg’s idiocy.