Tuesday, January 4, 2011

No Longer a Need to Pretend

It began - at least for me - with Dan Rather's embarrassing fall from grace with his refusal to acknowledge that he used forged documents designed to indict George W. Bush's military record. Oh, I know, it's been argued that Walter Cronkite was the template back in the days of Vietnam and Kennedy versus Nixon, but those were times when I was more concerned with capturing bees in a jar or building snow forts.

They were certainly times long before the inception of Fox News, an outfit reviled by the competition due to jealousy, and by the political left because of damage inflicted. It was Anita Dunn, Obama's former Communications Director, who was the attack dog of the administration, claiming that Fox News was not a "legitimate news organization", a mantra that the president himself soon repeated.

No, we were led to believe, only "real" news sources like ABC or CBS were to be trusted. Never mind the chilling notion that an American government was suddenly in the business of attacking the news media, in whatever incarnation; the viciousness with which it did so was unprecedented. Fox has been the target simply because they tell the story the alleged real news media deliberately conceals, and because much of the broadcast day is decidedly right-leaning.

Fair enough. So let's agree that Fox is biased - a notion they have done little to dispute - but of that fact they are unapologetic. But what of the blatantly obvious bias of the Big Broadcast news networks? Sure, they vehemently deny any accusations of bias, and bristle at the very mention of it, but come on, do they really think we're that naive?

When ABC News in June of 2009 gave the president an hour-long platform to promote "health care", ABC defended the move from critics. Ken McKay, then Chief of Staff for the Republican National Committee, wrote in a letter to ABC News President David Westin, in which he said, "The president has stated time and time again that he wants a bipartisan debate. Therefore, the Republican Party should be included in this prime time event."  ABC News Senior Vice President Kerry Smith disagreed, countering with the claim that any viewer who watches will be sure to find the network's coverage is "informative, fair and civil."

Then there is the problem with unemployment. Remember how the media pounded Bush relentlessly over the unemployment percentage, which then hovered around 5%? They joined Democrats in portraying that figure as exaggerated because the people who were among the employed had lost higher-paying jobs with better benefits, and were now forced to "flip burgers" to get by. Suddenly, however, under the leadership of Barack Obama, flipping burgers was a splendid new "career".

In May of 2009, I saw on ABC's World News Tonight with Charles Gibson, what to that point was the most astounding example of State Run media I had ever seen. Discussing the April jobs figures about to be released, Gibson announced that 539,000 jobs were lost. He followed up with the great news that in February alone, 4.3 million jobs were created!

The next day, I wrote When Democrat Presidents Create Jobs, in which I described how suddenly the lower quality jobs the Liberal media once complained about were the saving grace of unemployment running rampant. An excerpt:
He gives an example stating that 4.3 million Americans got new jobs in February. Then the video starts and we see (are you reading this, MoveOn?) middle aged people as part of the 72 who just got hired at...a burger joint. They interviewed a young man who had "just lost his construction job" and who is the new "fry guy". 
The piece goes on to gush about Walmart expecting to hire tens of thousands of new workers, and also that the federal government has hired 62,000 new people. 
Now, ABC News has taken water-carrying to a new level. To start the New Year, on January first, ABC News Political Director Amy Walter issued a warning to Republicans about trying to repeal "ObamaCare". On ABC's Good Morning America, Walter had this to say:
"If Republicans decide they're going to spend the first six months of this year going over and debating the individual mandate or ObamaCare or whatever they want to call it, I think that's not going to sit very well with the electorate."
 It's not enough to just be incredulous that an alleged "news" outlet would issue warnings to either political party (their job is to report on events, is it not?). No, one would also expect that the people responsible for informing the electorate were themselves informed. So how does Ms. Walter not know of the overwhelming majority of the electorate opposed to ObamaCare?

There are some who will ask me to quit complaining. After all, Fox pundits issue the same kinds of warnings all the time right?

Yes, that is true. But if the uber-respected ABC News is now doing it, wouldn't that equate them with Fox, which has been reviled and ridiculed by the government and its minions? It then becomes a question of integrity and intent. Fox has the former, while the media that hides within a false cloak of respectability has the latter.

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