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August 27, 2004

"None of us knows what this is going to turn into. By everyone’s hope, it won’t be Chicago 1968."

For TV news, the concern is not how to cover all the possible protests around town. It's "inciting disruptive behavior by showing up with cameras." And it's losing control of the convention telecast to events outside. There are jittery people in the networks, trying not to be the cause of anything.

A general sense of foreboding has emerged among prominent political TV reporters who are bracing for the hottest political convention since 1968.Newsday report, Aug. 26.

A couple of reminders this week of just how politicized the territory has become around the major media. There’s a rise in tensions as we get closer to the convention countdown in New York.

On Tuesday (Aug. 24) TV Newser reported that the area around Fox News Headquarters in New York City had received concrete fortifications.

Security concerns have led Rockefeller Center to position fixtures outside Fox News headquarters ahead of the GOP convention. “About 12 large round concrete fixtures doubling as oversized flower pots were positioned in front of the Fox News studios on 6th Avenue” recently, an e-mailer says. “These are obviously positioned to prevent any vehicles from the street to jump the sidewalk and get close to the building.”

Fox News is one of the sites around New York City where a prudent police force might expect trouble— because of what it stands for, and in alignment with. Media sites are political sites, especially in Fox’s case, which means there’s a potential for violence but also for political expression.

That’s what the oversized flower pots in front of Fox News are saying: Harden the perimeter. We may see “activity” around the building.

Meanwhile the city is expecting there to be protest all over, but no one knows what to expect when it comes to big marches and other street demonstrations. So imagination is free to operate. The New York Observer’s Joe Hagan reports this week that for TV news organizations, the main concern is not how to cover all the possible protests around town. It’s “inciting disruptive behavior by showing up with cameras.”

The people who run network television don’t want to be “causing” street politics in New York City. They are willing to take stealth action to avoid it.

“The fear is that the presence of that causes it,” said David Bohrman, the executive producer of CNN’s convention coverage. “That’s really a fear. We’re reluctant to pull our cameras out if there’s a crowd of people. You don’t want to galvanize a crowd by pointing a camera at them. You want to report on them, but you don’t want to be the cause of them.”

Mr. Bohrman said that was one of the reasons that most national news organizations didn’t mark their equipment with logos.

“I think you’ll find the networks and the cable networks, their cars won’t be marked so they don’t attract attention…”

Fortifications in front of Fox. Unmarked cars for network news crews. And a strange kind of dialogue going on between protestors in their rumored descent on the city and TV execs trying to war game it: Could we possibly have “democracy is in the streets” again, where TV, confronted with news on two fronts, cross cuts from one to the other— from the convention, to the streets?

Does that even happen at conventions any more? Do the rules permit it? Didn’t we outgrow that? Hagen reports on the confusion sown by not wanting to be a cause:

It wasn’t clear what would constitute a news event big enough to cut into a prime-time Republican speech—especially President Bush’s. And nobody was willing to hazard a guess, for fear of inadvertently making a recommendation to the protesters.

Fear of vehicle attacks. Fear of causing street action. Fear of protestors who somehow figure you out better than you have figured on them. Fear of ‘68. Fear of having to make a decision. They’re all related.

“We need to think a little bit before we do that,” says David Bohrman, in charge of CNN’s convention coverage. “None of us knows what this is going to turn into. By everyone’s hope, it won’t be Chicago 1968.”

After Matter: Notes, reactions & links…

Chris Thompson in The East Bay Express:

According to assignment editor Sarah Courtney of the Fox News politics desk, her network plans to have at least three teams of producers, reporters, and cameramen bird-dogging the protests throughout the week. “We haven’t solidified all the teams yet,” she says, “but we have every intention of making the protests a big part of the convention coverage.” An assistant to National Review editor Rich Lowry said the magazine will almost assuredly dedicate considerable space to the demo’s crazier antics. Steve Gray, who works at the city desk for the New York Post, promises to do the same: “If something that’s offbeat comes up, it’ll definitely be covered.” A spokesperson for the right-wing Washington Times claims that the paper sent up a reporter to cover the demonstrations two weeks ago. “If the protests get out of control, we’ll beef it up,” he added.

In this online chat, the Washington Post’s Robert Kaiser (associate editor) says he expects the protests to be the big story on Monday and Tuesday of convention week.

The AP reports on TV networks and their plans for handling protests: “”Our goal is to keep things in the proper perspective and not fall victim to staying with something just because it’s a good picture and happening now,” Princell Hair, executive vice president of CNN said. (via TV Newser.)

Greg Mitchell, Editor & Publisher, Challenging a Media Myth: ‘68 Riots Didn’t Doom Humphrey.

Posted by Jay Rosen at August 27, 2004 12:59 AM   Print


"Mr. Bohrman said that was one of the reasons that most national news organizations didn’t mark their equipment with logos."

What are they going to do about the uplink trucks, I wonder?

Posted by: Trudy W. Schuett at August 27, 2004 6:23 AM | Permalink

I'm puzzled by what passes for "responsibility" in the press. In Iraq, TV media requested and got made-to-order raids; but here, "responsible" journalism may require them to... not do journalism?

Posted by: Jeff Sharlet at August 27, 2004 7:59 AM | Permalink

It's going to be more Chicago 68 than Boston 04...

Because the Dems feel, without yet understanding why, that they are dead meat.

All intellectually honest liberals SHOULD be enraged at the press, my point #2 below. This is the beginning of explicit recognition that we are in a Moral Superiority War (not a culture war)
The 3 big issues the Kerry Lie brings up:
1) Kerry’s Lies mean he is unfit to be commander in chief; he will be sunk by the Swifties.

2) The press & academia has been enabling Kerry for years, covering up his lies. The PC press beliefs and their censorship of discussion, and cover up of the facts, has been and continues trying to enable Kerry’s Lie.

3) Kerry’s Lie helped create Political Correctness; “ending the Vietnam war, now” as the morally superior position. PC is built on Kerry Lie sand, and it is now developing cracks.

What is worth fighting for, what is worth fighting against? The evil commies deserved to be fought against; Saddam deserved to be fought against.

Posted by: Tom Grey - Liberty Dad at August 27, 2004 8:47 AM | Permalink

Two thoughts:
1. The news media would be exstatic if this convention were as unpredictable as 1968. Eyeballs would be glued to the sets and ratings would be through the roof if the republicans had to get 'off-script' and actually deal with the consequences of their actions for the last 4 years. The Whole World is Watching!

2. On the other hand, I fear the way uncontrolled demonstrations will be dealt with may involve "crowd control" measures undreamt of in 1968 but prefected a few years later. Kent State comes to mind

Posted by: wordjunky at August 27, 2004 1:33 PM | Permalink

Tom, Tom, Tom. Aside from whether you think Kerry is a liar or not, and aside from the fact that you think lying makes one unfit to be President (where are the WMDs?), there's a huge problem with your argument. There's no such thing as moral superiority.

Posted by: anon at August 27, 2004 1:43 PM | Permalink

Actually, anon, to be fair, "moral superiority" need not actually "exist" for there to be a war over it, it need only be perceived to exist.

And in my experience, even amoung those who, like you, claim it doesn't exist, they sneak it in the back door, and still insist that Bush (or something else) is inferior; assertions of the non-existance of moral superiority (or morality, which is equivalent) are typically the first phase of a razzle-dazzle, slieght-of-hand routine that still ends up with, "And that's why my morality is better than your morality", if you peel away the verbiage to the meaning below.

Posted by: Jeremy Bowers at August 27, 2004 2:36 PM | Permalink

Whatever you want to call it, there is always moral superiority and it is asserted by both sides in events like this.

What I found amusing was Jay's assertion that Fox was an especially political media outfit.
But many millions of Americans believe (correctly) that the main stream media is highly political, and intentionally so, and with a specific and predictable bias towards the left/Democrats/anti-Bush/pro-choice, and a few more positions.

As to the event, some of the groups will, I think, try to make this like Chicago '68. It won't be easy, because the police are much better trained in handling such people, and I don't think today's malcontents have near the organization of the Chicago demonstrators. Furthermore, in those days it was no big deal for folks to get together and smoke a few joints, which is good for creating odd behavior, while today, that would be instant jail with significant penalties. Besides, the groups today have music that sucks. In '68 there was all the good protest music and acid rock. These folks today just can't approach that.

Posted by: John Moore (Useful Fools) at August 27, 2004 9:00 PM | Permalink

Be careful John Moore, someone may RAP you upside the head. I remember Tom Lehrer talking about how the protesters "had all the good songs."

If it is like 1968, what I saw then was a police riot on a fairly peaceful march by people with what they saw as legitimate protests against a political party that had divided the nation. Now we have another political party that has divided the nation. So how will the police react?

The turmoil in 1968 was an emotional event heightened by the war in Vietnam, the Civil Rights struggle and the death of the person who probably could have kept Richard Nixon out of office, Robert Kennedy.

Today, I would assert, we have a harder divisiveness that is not as openly emotional but is cemented by a cold, hard hatred that I blame the Republicans for. They have turned drastically mean spirited since the mid-1990s with the Clinton impeachment and the way they keep blaming him for everything from solar winds to happy faces and governator thing in California. One thing about it, we have had two recent govs in this country dumber than ours in Montana, but one of them is now president.

And, it may be that the majority of the American public trusts Fox more than other media. But then, half of the American people is below the average of all the American people and that's what Fox is appealing to.

Posted by: Chuck Rightmire at August 27, 2004 11:08 PM | Permalink

Oh Robert K, wasn't he murdered by Sirhan Sirhan.
A Muslim? (terrible for letting Nixon in, then -- the USA needed 4 more Dem years in Vietnam).

Thanks, John, for noting the reality, and Jeremy at pointing out the usual anti-Christian razzle dazzle attempt.

The 1971 Vietnam question: keep fighting (including killing some innocents) or leave (and accept millions murdered)?
I say stay and fight is more moral. Most PC folk refuse, avoid, re-direct on the question.

Posted by: Tom Grey at August 28, 2004 12:26 AM | Permalink

The people who run network television don't want to be "causing" street politics in most cities in the world.

Posted by: 小说 at August 28, 2004 11:27 AM | Permalink

I love it. The Republicans are responsible for the hatred. Perhaps one forgets the Borking of Bork, the October Surprise (taken seriously by the press), the vicious attacks on Justice Thomas, and the bombarding of the right with hateful slogans for the last 30 years.

But its all our fault.

Now we certainly wasted a lot of time on Clinton's crimes, but that's not the cause of the hate.

Bush is viscerally hated, and I think it's because he had the effrontery to win the election without a majority (as 2 other presideents did previously). Then, even worse, he went to war. He's a Christian. He doesn't kill the rear ends of the press.

I have not seen hatred like we have this year since the Vietnam days. Republicans are reporting their cars are getting keyed just for a Republican sign. This is a result of the impeachment?

Then we can move on to the language of the left. Bush was a deserter and AWOL - nonsense!. We went into Iraq because of Haliburton - what a deeply offensive and utterly idiotic idea. But everyone knows the right puts money over human rights... at least that's what the left thinks. And of course the Republicn party exists to benefit the right, which is why its okay for the press to ignore the billionaires contributing to the Left's 527 while making a big deal out of the $1,000,000 the (lying) swifties get.

I would go on but won't bother. As a conservative, I am used to having people in the mainstream media make the most disgusting statements about us with no factual backup at all. I am used to having our side accused of all kinds of terrible motives. As a Vietnam Veteran, I've watched the left for a long time, and we were not treated well.

Posted by: John Moore (Useful Fools) at August 28, 2004 8:50 PM | Permalink

I agree John, Vietnam veterans were not treated well. Emotions ran high and the troops suffered. We have to be careful that the kids coming back from Iraq don't get burned with the same fire.

But I don't think that Bork was mistreated. He was not the first judge who was not confirmed. And the Republicans during Clinton's term refused to approve many of his judges. Justice Thomas is probably one of the dumbest supreme court justices we've had. His dissent in the Pledge of Allegiance case was the most unreadable piece of something or other ever written by a supreme and if you read it carefully, he insisted that the states still had the right to establish a religion. If you watched any of the confirmation hearings, you would know that the senators who questioned the opposing witnesses were doing their best to bury any possibility that he would be turned down.

You seem to be a true believer who apparently detests the "liberal" so much that you can't see what Bush has done and is doing to this country. We don't hate Bush; believe me he's the latest avatar of the "What Me Worry" man. But I do believe that he is such a true believer himself that he is in danger of leading this Constitutional country into the biggest morass we've been in since the Civil War.

I think, as a Vietnam veteran, you need to look deep into yourself to see why, other than his remarks after he came back, you hate Kerry so much. They may be enough, I admit. But if you consider a liberal someone who looks to the future, as I do, and a conservative someone who looks to the past, then you have to admit that Bush is no conservative. Pre-emptive war has never been in our lexicon. Nor has religious correctness. I suggest that Bush may be the most avante garde president we've ever had.

And as a Vietnam War veteran, I cannot believe you can support so strongly a man who "hid" from that war in the Air National Guard. I know that you had a friend killed doing the same sort of thing, but I know and you would too if you thought back on it, that the national guard, air or ground, was considered the safe alternative to going to Vietnam or Canada for many of those of draft age. I knew people who did both and knew no one who chose the guard. The fact that it turned out to be dangerous was an after the fact realization. The national guard lack of training and discipline was the real reason we had five kids killed at Kent State and young guardsmen who have had to live with that ever since. It's been known for some time that Bush used influence to advance past other candidates for the guard.

I've heard how you feel about the Swift Boat thing, but I'm going to suggest that, like the guy out in Oregon, many of these 30 years old memories were of things that they only heard about or, heaven forbid, remember only because someone "reminded" them about it just before this campaign started. How much do you remember of the war, and of particular actions in that war? Are they all sharp and clear and you absolutely sure they happened the way you remember? Could you be influenced by a guy you served with coming up and saying "do you remember the guy who....? I remember a lot of events from my life and every once in a while discover that, by damn, that didn't happen exactly that way even when I wind up at night shivering from the memory.

Posted by: Chuck Rightmire at August 28, 2004 11:16 PM | Permalink

Not confirming Bork was the right of the Senate. The verb "to bork" is a result of the vilification of Bork in the process. The vilification was so unprecedented as to cause a new verb to be used. Likewise, Thomas was aattacked with ad hominum nonsense - regardless of his abilities.

In reality, I'd rather have Thomas than Bork. I don't like Bork's view of the second amendment. But there is no doubt that Bork was a distinguished scholar. He writes articles that are very interesting and well reassoned.

I have never held lack of Vietnam service against anyone. I strongly disliked the way that Clinton dodged the draft - with lies. Few of my friends served in any capacity, but none of them lied (one did shoot himself in the leg).

But your characterization of Bush's service is wrong. He wanted to be a fighter pilot. If you have ever been around fighter pilots, you know that they don't do it to get out of something. They get into it because they like it (otherwise they'll wash out in training). I suspect Bush joined the guard because it gave him an opportunity to do what his dad did - fly fighters - with a shorter required active duty hitch. That's why I joind the Naval Air Reserve - only 2 years of active duty, although when I got out, I was not happy - I was RIF'ed along with many others. Fighter pilots are a special personality type. It was completely within that type for Bush to fly out to that character. Classic fighter pilot. Those in military aviation understood what he was doing - which was simultaneously honoring the crew and having fun.

To somehow conflate the improper riot training and discipline of the Ohio National Guard and the Texas Air National Guard is silly - in fact it is completely meaningless. Fighter pilots require a degree of discipline, in some areas, that is strong. This includes weapons release authority, and it meas flying rules. You don't just strap one on and go. You do a lot of stuff, via checklist. I used to be a pilot, and I am impressed by fighter pilots (except young ones are a bit crazy).

Now let's contrast Kerry. The Navy was also a popuar way to dodge the draft - my boot camp company (by a fluke I did 12 weeks instead of 2) had many people in it to avoid the ddraft. Unless you flew in Naval Aviation or were a corpsman, the odds of combat were extremely low. But that is what Kerry did. When he went for Swift boats, they were still relatively safe, because they were doing Operatiton MARKETTIME - something our aircraft were part of. When that was changed to SEALORD, Kerry complained loudly - so much that his first up-river assignment CO sent him back to Cam Rahn Bay after 10 days.

Kerry did something silly. He based his campaign on four months of his life - the war hero idea, knowing that the people he had been with during that time almost all detested him. Now you have to ask yourself why his entire chain of command despises him. That's hard to explain by bad memory. And don't say they are Republican, because I know first hand that that is not the case.

This whole thing is why it is silly to run on one's service record (unless, perhaps, one was career military). Every president since FDR (except Clinton) was a veteran, as were challengers (McGovern was a decorated bomber pilot). For Kerry, however, there was nothing else to run on. He has never done a damned thing. Why liberals picked him is a mystery to me - he is a nothing.

I don't detest "liberals" - I disagree with them on most issues. I detest some of the tactics that have been used, and it greatly troubles me that the main stream media is so strongly biased against Republicans.

You may not hate Bush, but there are many who do. It is a remarkable phenomenon. There may be a parallel on the right in some part of Clinton's career, but I didn't hear about people getting their cars keyed for supporting him.

As to morasses, etc, that's a matter of opinion. To me, the most important issue is World War IV and what we are going to do. This trumps by fara every social issue.

We have never faced as grave a threat to our own citizens in our own land as we do today. The debate needs to be about what to do about it. And that isn't a simple question and I doubt there's a simple answer. We wouldn't have invaded two countries without 9-11. But had we not, we would still be a nuclear proliferation problem, even bigger than today's because Iraq would be part of the mess and Libya might not have rolled over.

So one question is how do we keep a nuke from going off in, say, Manhattan? Mutual Assured Destruction breaks down when the aggressor could haved been any of three or four countries. Do you nuke them all? That is a horrible response - kill hundreds of millions of people because you don't know which group did it? I haven't heard good answers on this. And the frightening thing is that this issue is almost never discussed. The Administration has plans for preventing this, but I don't know what they are or whether they are any good. The clear intent of the administration is denuclearization by diplomacy or force. There is also the related issue of getting rid of the cause of the terrorism, which is ulimately the spread of a virulent form of Islam - one which spreads in a manner similar to the old Soviet driver communism. How do we get rid of that? In the middle of all of this is oil and what to do about it. A lot comes from regions with this terrorism, and the demand is skyrocketiing due to China and India.

You bring up the Swift Boat Veterans. First, Kerry refuses to release his records. Hmmm. Now, the memory of swifties is going to vary by person and by incident. Memory experts will tell you that people remember best unusual and powerful events - for example gunfights. So we have a number of situations. It has already been solidly shown that Kerry acquired his first Purple Heart by fraud. That makes him a shirker, and military people aren't fond of shirkers.

Other incidents are murkier. The bronze star event has three skippers who deny Kerry's report. Those skippers were dealing with the sort of situation you remember - friends wounded by a mine (another of which could go off at any time). Yet they spent around an hour rescuing those people and the boat. He there been fire, they would have remembered. It's not the sort of thing you forget.

So why does Rassman remember fire? He said he remembered splashes in the water. Casings from the many machine guns firing at the start of all of this? That could easily have led him to concluded he was under fire, and of course encourage him to stay under water as long as possible. Being in the water, thinking you are being fired at, is a terrible position for determining much of anything.

So who is right? The press prefers Navy paperwork, without investigating the chain of information flow on the paperwork (once again, the press bias at work).

Is every swiftie right? No. I expected there to be a few memories proven wrong, after all this time. Has anyone looked into Kerry's loyal swifties? I haven't heard of any investigations.

By the way, I remember vividly near-fatal events, of which there were a few. I remember less vividly interesting events, and I obviously don't remember every day of my service. This again is consistent with how human memory works.

You ask why I hate Kerry. It's simple - he skated on the edge of treason and slandered his country and Vietnam Veterans. He did so while in contact with the enemy, furthering their primary strategy of winning by destroying American willpower. His words were used to torture POWs which is why so many have come out against him.

I didn't know anything about him other than him being a liberal, unaccomplished Mass. senator until I heard his testimony to the Senate. That testimony was beyond horrible, and I have a background of listening to communist propaganda.

It was slick, it had good soundbites (which leads me to believe that Walinski had a mjor part in it), it slandered every veteran and more important, it slandered our country. It was so effective that they are still using it today. The communists were so thankful that they put Kerry's picture in a room honoring those who helped them win, in the War Remnants Museum.

Interestingly, neither of these issues have been reported.

Posted by: John Moore (Useful Fools) at August 29, 2004 1:48 AM | Permalink

There you go again self-righteously demanding apology for public stating facts about actual atrocities in Vitenam.
Shame on you.
The Pinko card doesn`t play anymore, John. Joe McCarthy`s tricks might have been slick in the fifties. They just look lame and desperate now.

Posted by: Ben Franklin at August 29, 2004 6:41 AM | Permalink

The Franklin story goes to the heart of why your position is so misguided. You can`t even tell the difference (or don`t care) between pro-Likud treason and US national security.

You think taking over the world is a security strategy.

What about Iran you were asking just the other day? Just as I had said then, it`s all planted disinformation endangering no one but the US public being manipulated by demagogues. Franklin may as well be you.

The "threat" from Iran is the threat from right-wing conspiracies in our government run by nuts like you. God help us!

Posted by: Ben Franklin at August 29, 2004 6:47 AM | Permalink

My morning paper out here in the least known state carried an interesting article quoting Dawn McQuiston-Surrett, a psychologist who studies memory and put out by the Associated Press, the voice of editors and publishers who are notoriously conservative, that goes directly to what I was saying above about memory. Those written down soon after an event tend to be much more accurate than those after a number of years, she says. It's one of the big problems with memory and with the Swift Boat stories. The really big problem, which she also talks about, is the scientific evidence that one person with a strong memory of something, even if it's wrong, can influence others to believe that something happened.

My local paper also carried an article about a marine lieutenant who was severely enough wounded while in Vietnam that he was invalided home for surgery and care. Later, while he was still a member of the Marine Reserve, he also took part in some of the same protests against the war that John Kerry was involved in. Now, I can question his memories as well, but they seem much more based on the "statement" of facts than the swifties are.

And I would guess, yes, that G.W. Bush wanted to fly like his father had, but he obviously got bored after a year of it and took off to work on a political campaign. Now, he was either not on a two-year tour of duty or he was in a different Air Force than I was in if he could get transferred just so he could work on a political campaign. And I would think that, as a young pilot, if he had been on active duty that people would have been more positive about his presence than they have been. I guess, as a former grunt in the AF, I resent him taking off to work on a political campaign just like you resent Kerry for joining the legitimate protests against that war after seeing what it was like.

Vietnam was a mess. And I don't like John Kerry trying to run on that any more than I would anyone else. Mentioning it as part of his resume, yes, putting a lot of emphasis on it, no. But I would suggest that part of his emphasis on it has been the attacks on his service and the fustercluck that G.W. has gotten us into in Iraq. And nuclear proliferation doesn't cut in Iraq. And why should attacking Iraq have turned Libya? He had been hit once and knew we wouldn't do much more than sanctions.

And I still contend that if the target was to upset the nuclear balance in the Middle East, Saddam would have made a better ally than the current mess we have in that country. He wouldn't have been the first terrible dictator we supported because he was of value to us against someone else. The enemy of my enemy is my friend even if he disgusts me.

John, I agree with you that the explosion of a nuclear device in New York, Washington, or even my home town would be a terrible thing. But I don't feel any safer about that than I did before 9/11. Terrorists are a different breed of cat. They can hit us, we have found, in a variety of ways. Nuclear devices can be found in more countries than we suspect and, with the disclosure of Pakistani involvement in spreading the atomic word, we don't know whom they are. But it won't be a missile or a plane to deliver it. A bomb will be in a truck or a ship or a boxcar and detonated remotely. Canadian National trades cars with Santa Fe/Burlington Northern. That's what we have to be afraid of.

I know people hate Bush and I think it is fear-based, which you don't credit because you don't see the dangers in the policies he has espoused since he took office, not just those since 9/11. He is dismantling the lifeline for many people in our bottom-line-oriented society. He is saying one thing: save the forests, for instance, but his actions are to cut them down. Clean air means to let polluters expand their operations in dirty coal-fired plants. Medicare prescriptions mean abandoning devices, bargaining, that would cut down prices and turning the dollars over to pharmaceutical companies. No child left behind means ignoring the impact of special education scores and of teacher standards on small, isolated schools that were doing very well without them as well as demanding they comply but not providing funding for them. It means setting spending standards for states without funding them.

You constantly harp on the "liberal" media, but what I see in the cases you cite (and I get the morning headlines e.mailed from the New York Times and read my local paper which is sometimes a real pain) is a fair balance of opinion and much more complete news than from other sources. Sure, you have to have a crap filter working on news and compare it with what you "know", not believe, and to know your source in order to be sure what you are seeing. But that's been there since the days of Addison and Steele.

Posted by: Chuck Rightmire at August 29, 2004 1:47 PM | Permalink

Hope Patterico doesn't mind me cross-posting this here:

More Evidence That The Press Wants Kerry to Win

Did the media fall out of love with John Kerry? (H/T: Instapundit)

Posted by: Tim at August 29, 2004 2:00 PM | Permalink

Could you PLEASE spread the word: MoveOn is NOT a 527. It is a PAC and adheres to the strict disclosure of its donors required by PAC legal status. So two lines into your first link, the facts are wrong.

Posted by: Ben Franklin at August 29, 2004 4:17 PM | Permalink

Your second link is completely incoherent. They simultaneously claim that the press is a liberal conspiracy AND they are completely driven by polls and therefore have no principles at all. This is nearly as plausible as the spineless Kerry flip-flopper who is simultaneously the most consistently liberal danger to the republic imaginable.

Will you guys make up your minds about which fantasy you want to spin? How long can you tolerate this incoherent nonsense as if it added up to a worldview? Really! A real press would be pointing out that this ridiculousness contradicts itself.

Posted by: Ben Franklin at August 29, 2004 4:23 PM | Permalink

Ben, uhh, ok, first, two lines into the first post is the transcript of Howard Kurtz's interview. So, you could, you know, write him and tell him all about MoveOn's credibility.

Your second post gave me a chuckle, thanks. Kerry, the consistantly most liberal flip-flopper, compares well with the Left-winger's dichotomous characterization of Bush as the ingeniously evil simpleton.

Perhaps neither candidate exists at both ends of conflicting spectrums, eh? Perhaps both candidate are more complex and pragmatic than the 2-d caricatures used by the opposition? Then again, perhaps Kerry talks and votes one way when it's politically expedient, but flips his vote later to match the liberal agenda?

I don't know. It's like his primary campaign. He's all Mr. Gung-Ho Military Man one day and then Mr. Internationlist Anti-war Guy the next.

Who can tell?

You'd think that a real press would point out the incoherent nonsense that has some Left-wingers threatening revolution and armed resistance - kinda like after the 1995 OKC bombing?

Anyway, I found the idea interesting that the press keeps an eye on the trend of popular opinion and the direction of conventional wisdom. That the press hates to have to say, "we didn't see that coming" or "we pretty much got that wrong".

I think the dethroning of the presumptive nominee, Howard Dean, for the "electable" John Kerry was an interesting shift in press narratives. I have not heard a good explanation for the role the press played in their coverage or an analysis looking back at their storylines.

Posted by: Tim at August 29, 2004 5:09 PM | Permalink

From the MoveOn website: "The MoveOn family of organizations consists of three entities., a 501(c)(4) organization, primarily focuses on education and advocacy on important national issues. MoveOn PAC, a federal PAC, primarily helps members elect candidates who reflect our values. And Voter Fund, a 527 organization, primarily educates voters on the positions, records, views, and qualifications of candidates for public office."

Posted by: Tim at August 29, 2004 5:11 PM | Permalink

527 Committee Activity
Top 50 Organizations
Top Contributors, 2004 Cycle

Posted by: Tim at August 29, 2004 5:22 PM | Permalink

Ah, someone asserting that the New York Times is fair.

Fair to that person, who also advocates a solid liberal line. Absolutely consistent.

Conservatives have long understood the Main Stream Media's leftward orientation. This isn't new. It's also pointless to argue because too many people want to ignore that.

One might want to ask how the Swiftees are so successful with so little money, when the left has 50 times as much invested in that area.

The Swiftees gave fair warning in a press conference which the "fair" press trashed. The next time, months later, the Swiftees appeared in a way that could not be stopped.

Why should hitting Iraq turn Syria? Ask Khadaffi - he said it did. And that flipped the Khan network, and the result is in fact that you are safer than if none of that had happened. Not safe, but safer.

Also, it would appear we have 200,000 troops on Iran's western border and a bunch more on the north and east. Hmmmm.... And Iran is a very real nuclear proliferation threat.

Now I have yet to hear the slightest sane solution to nuclear proliferation from the Democrats. Some now say we should have left Saddam in place, but then what? Use him as an ally? For what? What would he do if he got his hands on Iranian nukes? Turn them over to us?

Sorry, the world ain't simple. We have more campaigns to fight - Iran, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, North Korea? What are the odds we can defang all of those without conflict?

I have yet to read an article discussing deterrence in the face of multiple nuclear armed country (except in Commentary). It's a serious probem. MAD is inadequate now. The ABM system is inadequate (even though it will eventually work, and with nuclear warheads - the sane way to do ABM and what the Russians have around moscow - it would work better).

Posted by: John Moore (Useful Fools) at August 29, 2004 5:57 PM | Permalink

From Biden To Kerry, Or: The Descent Of The Democrats

I mentioned above that "the Democrats" forced Biden out of the '88 race for transgressions that were minor compared to the charges today against Kerry, which don't bother them. This is a relatively general suggestion of hypocrisy. Here's something more specific:

I'm not sure that this more exemplifies the scant scrutiny Kerry got during the primaries from his own Democratic opponents (everyone seemed more preoccupied with stoking Bush-hate) or a failure of the press to pressure/examine the "front-runners" during the shortened primary season so that Democrats could "shake the tree" or shed light into a few more closets before the nominee was decided.

Dean never released his sealed papers, Kerry never released his military records, Edwards' trial history was never examined ...

The press and Democrats seemed to be afraid of bruising each other and instead of testing each other, they all ran against Bush.

Seems the 4th Estate watchdogs failed to do their jobs during the electoral process.

Posted by: Tim at August 29, 2004 7:40 PM | Permalink

Bush in 30 seconds (source of the Bush/Hitler ads):

"No Express Advocacy: Voter Fund is a so-called section 527 political organization, and is prohibited from expressly advocating for the election or removal of specific candidates for federal elections. In other words, your ads can say lots of different things about George Bush and his administration, but you are not allowed to say that people should vote for or against him."

Posted by: Tim at September 3, 2004 10:33 AM | Permalink

John Moore: This may be a liberal, but it is not because I was talked into it by anyone. It's based on my own thinking after 69 years of watching the world. I do my own thinking and come up with my own answers, and I don't need anyone else to do my thinking for me. Apparently you need Fox and the Lookout to do your thinking.

Posted by: Chuck Rightmire at September 4, 2004 10:56 PM | Permalink

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