Monday, July 28, 2008

The Media And The Campaign: Blackmailers And Liars

Here is an excerpt from the article Matt Yglesias linked to on this post on his blog:

During the evening news, the majority of statements from reporters and anchors on all three networks are neutral, the center found. And when network news people ventured opinions in recent weeks, 28% of the statements were positive for Obama and 72% negative.

Network reporting also tilted against McCain, but far less dramatically, with 43% of the statements positive and 57% negative, according to the Washington-based media center.
But-- there are also a lot more nasty things about McCain to report on: his flip-flops, his signing of a statement against America for the North Vietnamese, his calling his wife a cunt in public, his calling a kid who asked him a legitimate question at a public event a little jerk-- and on and on and on.

So what is going on is that McCain has a lot more mistakes and dirt out there about him, but the media covers him more favorably than they cover Obama-- and they say a few bad things about McCain to make it look like they're not prejudiced in his favor to people who don't look at a lot of news.

So the mainstream media's campaign coverage a whole can definitely be called, pro-McCain dishonesty-- it's just at least minimally well-done and sophisticated pro-McCain dishonesty.

Someone whose agenda for the day seemed to be to try to demoralize liberals cynically wrote of pro-McCain prejudice in the media:
Bottom line: McCain wins, Obama loses.

This is the plan and they're sticking to it.
I wrote:
It's more like they're going to try to get McCain to win, but only if they can do so without any really obvious and really outrageous rule-breaking.

If they have to do something that people are going to notice and get pissed at Republicans about to win, then they won't, and Obama may win just based on popularity and advertising.

Obama is so much more appealing, popular and less gaffetastic than McCain that this is not an easy road for the Republicans. But I think that they're intimidating Obama and telling him what to say (something I speculate happens to a lot of prominent Democrats), so they may get him to produce a few bad gaffes before the election.

Who would push around a powerful Democrat? Someone the Democrat thinks that they can't expose or strike back at, and have it be worth it-- in other words, someone the victim thinks perhaps can and will do some damage to the victim's reputation (or other interest) that the victim thinks is not worth the risk of trying to stand up against. That's what would explain no one speaking out, and us not hearing about it. It would be a very well-thought-out job, perhaps by people who have built up a lot of know-how, perhaps with a psychologist's input, on blackmail, and have a very tight scheme orchestrated to use on personalities they are confident will submit to it.
The commenter then wrote something about Obama's not dropping out of the race. It might seem superficially like if someone wanted Obama to lose, they would just try to get him to drop out, but consider my response to that:
While they might like Obama to drop out, if the alternative was Hillary, they wouldn't like it (their first goal was to keep her from winning the nomination, and now they're the primary reason Obama isn't going to pick her to be his VP). Also, they might feel that if they push too hard, which is what openly asking Obama to drop out might be, he might not go along with it, and might push back, and then it might ruin their whole plan to mess with him. If, on the other hand, they just claim that there is some kind of national security interest served by Obama wearing different colored suits than he normally would, or talking about how bad black fathers are on Fathers Day, or giving a much more evasive-sounding, ambiguous and hesitating response to a question than he normally would, Obama might just submit to their demands while trying to fool himself that the rationale he is being fed is true, and that he's not being steered into making subtle gaffes or trumpeting propaganda.