Tag Archives: media

Ouch. And again I say, ouch.

Mary Katherine Ham at the Weekly Standard blog has assembled this collection of clips into what she calls “Obama’s Attack Ad on Himself”:

The number of fundamental policy positions on which Obama has simply and brazenly reversed himself is staggering, especially (as MKH puts it) while “floating above us all as the post-partisan redeemer of America.” Ham expresses regret at not having posted this video earlier; I regret it also, since it’s over three and a half minutes long (way too long for a TV spot) and won’t be carried anywhere but the Web; if it had been released earlier, it might well have filtered into TV news coverage. I should note that I don’t say that as a knock against her (it’s a very effective clip collection, and good on her for getting it out); just as a measure of agreement that it’s a shame it took longer to assemble the requisite video than she expected.

More here, here, here, and here. Jim Geraghty sums up the message: “All Barack Obama Statements Come With an Expiration Date. All Of Them.” The blog post that follows that title, a roster of major policy positions that make up Obama’s flip-flop playlist, is truly breathtaking; a wonder to behold.

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Obamfomercial ratings match Perotgramming

Oh, that has gotta hurt bad.

Nielsen announces that TV ratings for Barack Obama’s multi-network blanket infomercial only slightly beats out the mind-numbing pie-chart party broadcast by billionaire circus sideshow Ross Perot on Election Eve in 1996. Perot went on to win slightly over 8% of the vote.

Now some people might say that a 21.7% share is pretty good. Those people would be right if it hadn’t been insanely hyped, broadcast over five networks, and featured one candidate of only a two-candidate race. (Captain Ed’s got my back.) As it stands, the Nielsen ratings reflect the expected audience of such a production. The people who watched were the ones predisposed in the first place to sit through a gauzy tribute to Barack Obama for half an hour. That is to say, those who are already hard-core supporters.

The rest of the viewing public already knew what was coming.

The Obama press purge continues

First it was radio. Then it was TV. Now, finally, the Obama campaign has completed the media-suppression trifecta by cracking down on unsympathetic newspapers.

In a report first broken by Drudge, it appears three newspapers have been booted from the Obama campaign plane: the Washington Times, the New York Post, and the Dallas Morning News. As it happens, all three are papers that had the nerve to endorse John McCain for president.

The campaign says it needed to make room on the plane for “network bigwigs” and reporters from the black magazines Essence and Jet, all of whom are naturally more interested in seeing a President Obama sworn in. The Washington Times feels especially aggrieved by the decision, since they have been with the campaign since Day One:

“We’ve been traveling since 2007 with him. … We’re a relevant newspaper — every day we break news,” Solomon said. “And to suddenly be kicked off the plane for people who haven’t covered it as aggressively or thoroughly as we are … it sort of feels unfair.”

He said the newspaper protested but was turned down again by the campaign.

“I can only hope that the candidate who describes himself as wanting to unite the nation doesn’t have some sort of litmus test for who he decides gets to cover the campaign,” Solomon said, noting that the Obama campaign’s decision came just two days after the paper endorsed McCain.

(Emphasis mine.) Thus falls the latest blow in the saga of what I’ve called Battered Media Syndrome. After swamping a radio show with shrill and hostile nuisance-calls to penalize it for hosting an Obama skeptic, then barring not one but two TV stations who had the temerity to ask Joe Biden uncomfortable questions, the campaign has now denied access to reporters from print newspapers who decline to pledge allegiance to The One.

Will their colleagues who still have their access shake off their Battered Media Syndrome and stand up for their fellow journalists? Or will each of them simply keep telling himself or herself “well, at least I know he still loves me” until their own next misstep gets them jettisoned as well?

If Obama is elected, I can’t wait to see what the evolution of the White House press corps makeup looks like.

(More reaction here and here. Don Surber is also noticing BMS symptoms; he tries his hand at explaining it, and may have some points, but frankly I’d rather just see them shape up.)

UPDATE: I’m getting emails calling to my attention how John McCain kicked Maureen Dowd and Joe Klein, both frequent McCain critics, off his plane, and that I should condemn that too, shouldn’t I?

Well, no. Dowd and Klein are opinion journalists, not reporters. When they lost their seats, the New York Times and Newsweek still had reporters aboard; the publications themselves were not barred as the WaTimes, NYPost, and DMNews were from Obama’s plane. Indeed, some time back a NYPost columnist was booted from the Obama plane for a less-than-flattering column he wrote about the candidate, and I didn’t say anything, because the Post still had a presence on the plane (their reporters), and frankly Obama isn’t obliged to give a seat to a guy with a history of slamming him.

There is no excuse, however, for ditching the entire press crew of a publication for their editorial board’s position, especially reporters; doubly especially in the last week before the election when such coverage is crucial.

Barbarians (AKA readers) at the gate

And here I thought this might actually go away.

The Obama-Khalidi tape, still in Los Angeles Times captivity, is drawing considerably more attention than the Times expected. The newspaper’s headquarters was confronted by a large crowd of Americans under the foolish, provincial impression that a videotape of a presidential candidate giving tacit approval to hours of Jew-hatred and Israel-bashing, and actively toasting its star purveyor, might actually be newsworthy, or at least that it might not be appropriate to stiffarm the thousands of people demanding that the videotape’s contents be released.

(Video courtesy of Mere Rhetoric, which has photos and more video at the link. More reaction here and here.)

So far, the reasons given by the Times for not releasing the tape (which was used as source material for a Times story by Peter Wallsten on Obama support among Palestinians), in chronological order over the course of the last five days, are:

  1. In a conversation between and Gateway Pundit’s Jim Hoft and Wallsten: “When I asked him about the video he said that as far as he was concerned he was through with the story.”
  2. Charles Johnson at Little Green Footballs got an email from the readers’ rep saying their reporting should be good enough: “The Times did write about the tape, so I’m not sure what you mean about suppressing the video or information from the video. Here is a copy of the report about the video.”
  3. Johnson blogged that Fox News’s Brit Hume asked the Times for their side of the story, to which they replied, “No comment.”
  4. The Times said in a statement replying to accusations from the McCain campaign: ““The Los Angeles Times did not publish the videotape because it was provided to us by a confidential source who did so on the condition that we not release it…The Times keeps its promises to sources.”
  5. Most recently, the Times expanded on that last one by telling an emailer the source might come to harm if the tape were released: “The reporter agreed with his source not to release the tape in return for getting acess to it…To break that agreement might put the source of the tape in jeopardy.”

So what do you think? Which one’s the truth, if any?

UPDATE: Gateway Pundit has Fox News video of Khalidi hiding from cameras and siccing security on the crew.

UPDATE II: Andrew McCarthy has an excellent rundown of the situation, explaining in great detail why the Times’s high-minded “journalistic ethics” blather isn’t worth the time wasted reading it.

UPDATE III: Jennifer Rubin at Pajamas Media has a link to a Khalidi lecture. Read the article and check the video…not a pretty picture.

Oh, sure, NOW they tell us…

Now that the Obamfomercial has filtered into the public consciousness, a spark of epiphany flickers in the unblinking eye of Barack Obama’s major-network entourage: the senator’s economic numbers — mirabile et horribile dictu! — don’t add up.

As I noted in my anti-liveblog on the mega-ad, the Associated Press was fairly quick to post a lengthy fact-check dossier on Obama’s cross-spectrum waste of time. CBS appears to be the latest to comprehend this late-dawning horror. Mercy me, can it be true?

If he closes every loophole as promised, saves every dime from Iraq, raises taxes on the rich and trims the federal budget as he’s promised to do “line by line,” he still doesn’t pay for his list. If he’s elected, the first fact hitting his desk will be the figure projecting how much less of a budget he has to work with – thanks to the recession. He gave us a very compelling vision with his ad buy tonight. What he did not give us was any hint of the cold reality he’s facing or a sense of how he might prioritize his promises if voters trust him with the White House.

And it only took them until the weekend before the election to put 2 and 2 together, so to speak.

Making the business tax argument funny

The Tax Foundation held a video submission contest for amateur YouTube videos explaining, quickly and simply, how the business tax works, what effects it has on the economy, and why American business taxes are too high. The winners range from the edgy, fast-paced crash-course:

…to the funny, kitschy period piece:

(That second one reminds me of the hysterical employee orientation video from “Harvey Birdman” [Part 1 and Part 2 on YouTube], except way shorter.)

The videos are imaginative, fascinating, and surprisingly instructive given the necessary limits on breadth and depth. The upshot of the argument, as the common thread running through these videos, is that virtually the only country in the world that is not benefitting from high American corporate tax rates is…well, America.

If only this contest had been held weeks ago, McCain might have saved himself a lot of grief, not to mention gained himself a few awesome ads…

(H/T the Corner.)

Obama as mail-order herbal enhancer

I got a call from my dad this evening. He said he “had a proposal” for me. He proposed that I liveblog the upcoming half-hour of major-network Obama paid programming. (Wouldn’t you know, Dad’s a WitSnapper fan.) I said that was an interesting proposal, but I was unclear as to how that would be beneficial. He explained that, well, if I liveblogged it, then he’d be able to find out what was in it without being forced to sit through it.

“Ah. I see.”

The results of this conversation, and my estimation of the omnipresent Obama-worship how-to video and its genesis, below the break.

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