Wednesday, July 28, 2010

What Media Bias? Reporters, Academics Coordinated Favorable Coverage of Candidate Obama on Online Bulletin Board

How many times have you heard this: "Oh, you silly paranoid right-wing stooge. There's no such thing as media bias. If there is any, it would be to the right since the networks are owned by corporations....!"

Yet despite the reassurances of the most condescending and disingenuous partisan hacks, it almost seemed like reporters from numerous media outlets were getting together to coordinate their coverage in a manner that would put liberal politicians or policies in the best possible light.

This month, The Daily Caller has been releasing the archives of an online bulletin board frequented by reporters, columnists and academics called Journo List.

I had first heard of Journo List fairly recently and wasn't too surprised to learn that former Washington Post columnist Dan Wiegel was a member after his lame defense of belligerent and grabby North Carolina Democrat Bob Etheridge (NC-2). Wiegel was hired by the WaPo to cover conservative media and the Tea Party in April, but according to many, Weigel's coverage betrayed a personal animosity towards the right in general from the onset.

Turned out that was just the beginning. Shortly after Weigel's departure from the WaPo, more information about Journo-List, it's members and their contents came to light such as this gem from Spencer Ackerman, then of the Washington Independent when the Jeremiah Wright story broke during the 2008 campaign:
I do not endorse a Popular Front, nor do I think you need to. It’s not necessary to jump to Wright-qua-Wright’s defense. What is necessary is to raise the cost on the right of going after the left. In other words, find a rightwinger’s [sic] and smash it through a plate-glass window. Take a snapshot of the bleeding mess and send it out in a Christmas card to let the right know that it needs to live in a state of constant fear. Obviously I mean this rhetorically.

And I think this threads the needle. If the right forces us all to either defend Wright or tear him down, no matter what we choose, we lose the game they’ve put upon us. Instead, take one of them — Fred Barnes, Karl Rove, who cares — and call them racists. Ask: why do they have such a deep-seated problem with a black politician who unites the country? What lurks behind those problems? This makes *them* sputter with rage, which in turn leads to overreaction and self-destruction.
First of all, I highly doubt Spencer Ackerman could smash anything through a dollhouse window rhetorically, let alone a plate glass window.

With that said.....casually slinging around accusations of racism for short-term political gain.....gosh golly gee- why does that sound so familiar?

The Journo-List gang also coordinated their best line of attack against Sarah Palin once she was nominated to be John McCain's running mate at the GOP convention and celebrated like their team had won the Superbowl on election night.
LAURA ROZEN: People we no longer have to listen to: would it be unwise to start a thread of people we are grateful we no longer have to listen to? If not, I’ll start off: Michael Rubin.

MICHAEL COHEN, NEW AMERICA FOUNDATION: Mark Penn and Bob Shrum. Anyone who uses the expression “Real America.” We should send there ass to Gitmo!

JESSE TAYLOR, PANDAGON.NET: Michael Barone? Please?

LAURA ROZEN: Karl Rove, Newt Gingrich (afraid it’s not true), Drill Here Drill Now, And David Addington, John Yoo, we’ll see you in court?

JEFFREY TOOBIN, THE NEW YORKER: As a side note, does anyone know what prompted Michael Barone to go insane?


SPENCER ACKERMAN: Let’s just throw Ledeen against a wall. Or, pace Dr. Alterman, throw him through a plate glass window. I’ll bet a little spot of violence would shut him right the fuck up, as with most bullies.

JOE KLEIN, TIME: Pete Wehner…these sort of things always end badly.

For alot of us, the only new and novel aspect of this is that the participating 'journalists' left an electronic record with their names attached to it instead of maintaining a veneer of objectivity or plausible deniability. The snide, condescending, venomous contempt for anybody to their right (which would basically be no less than half the country) on the journo-listers part is nothing new, however.

No comments:

Post a Comment