Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Partisanship in the Press

So, you think the media's way too biased in this election? Think they're being unfair in their coverage of the campaign? Apparently, they agree:

We were all set to dismiss Harris’ mother as a crank. Same for VandeHei’s: a conservative dismayed by what she sees as kid-glove treatment of Barack Obama. Then along came a study — funded by the prestigious Pew Research Center, no less — suggesting at first blush, at least, that they may be on to something.

The Project for Excellence in Journalism’s researchers found that John McCain, over the six weeks since the Republican convention, got four times as many negative stories as positive ones. The study found six out of 10 McCain stories were negative.

What’s more, Obama had more than twice as many positive stories (36 percent) as McCain — and just half the percentage of negative (29 percent).

You call that balanced?

OK, let’s just get this over with: Yes, in the closing weeks of this election, John McCain and Sarah Palin are getting hosed in the press, and at Politico.

And, yes, based on a combined 35 years in the news business we’d take an educated guess — nothing so scientific as a Pew study — that Obama will win the votes of probably 80 percent or more of journalists covering the 2008 election. Most political journalists we know are centrists — instinctually skeptical of ideological zealotry — but with at least a mild liberal tilt to their thinking, particularly on social issues.

So what?

The writer goes on to say, hey, it's not our fault that the Obama campaign has been a paragon of well-managed messianic fabulousness, while the McCain campaign has devolved into nothing but endless bickering between The Crank and The Hick Diva; we're not responsible for the reality, no sir; it's just our job to report it. So what?

So what, indeed.

It's as if a group of colorblind people insisted that blue was really orange, and any perception to the contrary was merely the bias of all those people who thought otherwise. It couldn't possibly be the bias of the colorblind people who couldn't actually see the reality, could it? No; of course not.

So media bias in favor of Obama is a sham, according to the media; it's not their fault at all that Obama's so mind-bendingly, thrill up the leg terrific.


Thankfully, a few actual reporters are giving the rest of the MSM a run for their money. We had Barbara West in Orlando, asking actual questions instead of mouthing praise and worship to Joe Biden; now Bill Sammon of Fox News reports the following, according to Drudge:

Barack Obama laughs off charges of socialism. Joe Biden scoffs at references to Marxism. Both men shrug off accusations of liberalism.

But Obama himself acknowledges that he was drawn to socialists and even Marxists as a college student. He continued to associate with Marxists later in life, even choosing to launch his political career in the living room of a self-described Marxist, William Ayers, in 1995, when Obama was 34.

Obama's affinity for Marxists began when he attended Occidental College in Los Angeles.

"To avoid being mistaken for a sellout, I chose my friends carefully," the Democratic presidential candidate wrote in his memoir, "Dreams From My Father." "The more politically active black students. The foreign students. The Chicanos. The Marxist professors and structural feminists."

Obama's interest in leftist politics continued after he transferred to Columbia University in New York. He lived on Manhattan's Upper East Side, venturing to the East Village for what he called "the socialist conferences I sometimes attended at Cooper Union."

After graduating from Columbia in 1983, Obama spent a year working for a consulting firm and then went to work for what he described as "a Ralph Nader offshoot" in Harlem.

"In search of some inspiration, I went to hear Kwame Toure, formerly Stokely Carmichael of Black Panther fame, speak at Columbia," Obama wrote in "Dreams," which he published in 1995. "At the entrance to the auditorium, two women, one black, one Asian, were selling Marxist literature."

Obama supporters point out that plenty of Americans flirt with radical ideologies in college, only to join the political mainstream later in life. But Obama, who made a point of noting how "carefully" he chose his friends in college, also chose to launch his political career in the Chicago living room of Ayers, a domestic terrorist who in 2002 proclaimed: "I am a Marxist."

Also present at that meeting was Ayers' wife, fellow terrorist Bernardine Dohrn, who once gave a speech extolling socialism, communism and "Marxism-Leninism."

It's absolutely outrageous that now, just one week before the election, American voters are finally learning the truth about Barack Obama and his political leanings. Frankly, Obama's past Marxist associations and affiliations with people who espouse those views ought to have been front-page news way back during the primaries, and they would have been, had Obama been a Republican or a less-liked Democrat. But since he was the MSM's anointed one, they decided to give him a pass on all of his past, frequently chastising anyone who did try to discuss any of that as a racist.

It is, apparently, racist in America to raise questions about the past beliefs, statements, and associations of an African-American presidential candidate; that, anyway, has been the MSM's magic bullet used to kill any story that might have delved into Obama's past without the admiring adjectives and glossing-over of any inconvenient truths. But as members of the MSM try to wrap themselves in the garment of objectivity, pretending that the only reason they've been all but cheerleading for Obama is because he's just incontrovertibly fantastic, they should remember that the rest of us can see right through those gossamer threads--and we're apalled by their naked partisanship.


Irenaeus said...

"Obama will win the votes of probably 80 percent or more of journalists covering the 2008 election"

Only 80% or more? I bet it's well over 90% plus. Look for a survey somewhere.

Tim J. said...

I thought this description of journalists as...

"...centrists... but with at least a mild liberal tilt to their thinking, particularly on social issues."

- was a hilarious confirmation of press bias. They're so biased to their liberal views, they think they're "centrists" - paragons of middle-of-the-road reasonableness. Everyone knows it's the right that's "extreme".

The phrase "at least a mild liberal tilt" is the very model of a colossal understatement.

eulogos said...

I wonder why McCain's campaign doesn't have an add using the first quote you pulled from Obama's book, ending with "The Marxist professors and structural feminists."

Perhaps they think people don't know what that means? Personally, I think this is still where Obama's beliefs are, and that if elected he is going to pull this country as far to the left as he can get it.

I think this is a really bad thing. Not as bad as the F.O.C.A that he wants to pass, not as obviously and intrinsically evil, but a really big mistake.

Susan Peterson