Monday, November 17, 2008

In The Media Tank

Update: More from Ed Morrissey at HotAir.
Also, see below.

Since election day, there have been a few thoughtful articles, and even a Washington Post mea culpa by their ombudsperson, Deborah Howell, about the bias in critical media coverage during this year's Presidential campaign, especially focusing on uncritical coverage of the Obama Campaign. Day by Day Cartoonist, Chris Muir (above), has been all over the post election trend.

And also at the WaPo, media critic Howard Kurtz has uncomfortably pointed out that, post election, the bias has continued unabated, which now risks being turned into a merchandizing bonanza of "mythmaking" by a complicit and corrupted press, eager, and perhaps desperate to turn their own waning fortunes around!
Are the media capable of merchandizing the moment, packaging a president-elect for profit? Yes, they are.

What's troubling here goes beyond the clanging of cash registers. Media outlets have always tried to make a few bucks off the next big thing. The endless campaign is over, and there's nothing wrong with the country pulling together, however briefly, behind its new leader. But we seem to have crossed a cultural line into mythmaking.
Will more and more in the press and media become, like MSNBC's gushing weeper, Chris Matthews, little more than sententious Obamaites? It was he who early on sprang himself free of any form of bipartisanship, by announcing a "furrowing" running up his leg. And he now insists that his job is to make Barack Obama's Presidency successful! Note that in the same sentence that he revealed his "furrowing feeling" Chris actually called what he does "reporting!"

A Pew Research Center poll-based study, released in the waning days of the campaign (Oct. 22nd), correctly identified that there was considerable media cheer-leading that favored Senator Obama during this campaign. Respondents said so by 70% - 9%, a considerably higher percentage during this Presidential election year, than the consistent media favoritism that has been shown for the Democrat candidate in prior Presidential campaigns.

From the opening graf of their release accompanying the study:
Voters overwhelmingly believe that the media wants Barack Obama to win the presidential election. By a margin of 70%-9%, Americans say most journalists want to see Obama, not John McCain, win on Nov. 4. Another 8% say journalists don't favor either candidate, and 13% say they don't know which candidate most reporters support.
Now, I know the clip (below) only includes 12 people Obama voters interviewed right after voting. But this little preview of a "Documentary Finds Media Coverage Left Obama Voters Uneducated About Campaign Issues," which was posted by John Zeigler (of "The Path to 9/11" fame) at It tracks closely with a post-election Zogby poll of Obama voters, the results of which will likely stun you. For example, in the Zogby poll, over half of the Obama voters (57.4%) could not correctly identify which party currently controls congress. A wild 50/50 guess would have yielded slightly better results! It gets worse.

The descriptive statement accompanying this Ziegler clip says:
"On Election day, twelve Obama voters were interviewed extensively right after they voted to learn how the news media impacted their knowledge of what occurred during the campaign. These voters were chosen for their apparent intelligence/verbal abilities and willingness to express their opinions to a large audience. The rather shocking video seeks to provide some insight into which information broke through the news media clutter and which did not."

Please, watch it all the way through.

If the press and other mainstream media in our country have so willingly thrown in with the new mantra of uncritical views as news, from whence will come actual tempered and tested news on which the voters, in the future, can draw on as a basis for their own views?

Even the senior correspondent at taxpayer-subsidized PBS, Ray Suarez, kept a straight face while he gave a speech in Michigan in early October, during which he seriously declared that virtually any criticism at all of Barack Obama, was really hidden racism. What crap!

What are we in for? Is the clip posted above our future?

Update: Tom McLaughlin, teacher & frequent commenter at HotAir noted the trend with his class about a week ago, in a guest column at Accuracy In Media.

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At 2:06 AM, December 08, 2008, Blogger Got Kids said...

Torture-Us No More. I have yet to revel in the victory, spending way to much time cleaning up YOUR mess. But what the heck....You suck, your ideas suck and now the whole world just says AHHHHH.

At 10:11 PM, December 08, 2008, Blogger Trochilus said...

Got Kids,

Welcome . . . first comment here, I see! Gee, just a teensy weensy bit testy for an opener, don't you think? No set up, no background . . . just instant spew from you?

The readers here are no doubt unaware of the brief exchange we had elsewhere last summer over your extensive cheer-leading for rising gasoline prices which -- as you may recall at the time -- were going through the roof.

Perhaps you are incensed that they have now come down?

Would I be correct in assuming that the recent precipitous drop in crude oil prices, and the consequential drop in gasoline prices, has charged you up so much that you actually went hunting for me?

Not to worry, GK, with the Democats now getting their government hooks into the auto industry, they'll be dictating to the American public what kind of cars they'll be driving from now on, period.

Just think, Barney Frank, the careless architect of the credit market crash, will now be in a position to dictate CAFE standards for vehicles! You may remember that he and Chris Dodd laid the foundation for the crash of the credit markets through the adoption of federal laws that forced banking institutions to purchase bad debt.


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