Thursday, November 16, 2006

Why Is The Media So Eager to Undermine The Democrats?

So much for a honeymoon period.

No sooner had the Democrat majority in Congress gained a foothold in our consciousness, than the media powers-that-be decided to cut the Dem's legs out from under them.


How else to explain such stunning headlines as, "Pelosi Faces No-Win Outcome Over Murtha," which accompanied a widely-distributed story by the AP's Andrew Taylor on Wednesday?

In that story. Taylor noted,
"Murtha could prove to be a problematic candidate because of his penchant for trading votes for pork projects and his ties to the Abscam bribery sting in 1980, the only lawmaker involved who wasn't charged."
Oh yeah, he wasn't charged. But by the time one gets to that, the sliming is already in. Taylor very clearly makes his point that he views Murtha as a sellout. And a possibly corrupt one, as well.

So, what exactly makes this a no-win?

The Times Chimes In

And what of the New York Times?

In a story headlined, "Many Say Leadership Race Shatters Democrats' Image," Carl Hulse writes:
Downtrodden Republicans were enjoying the spectacle of the split between Representative Nancy Pelosi, the incoming speaker, who is publicly pushing Representative John P. Murtha, her longtime ally, and Democrats rallying behind Mr. Hoyer, who has served in the leadership slot beneath Ms. Pelosi for four years.

“I can’t believe they are self-destructing before they even get started,” said Representative Ray LaHood, Republican of Illinois. “Everyone on our side is giddy.” a contentious fight that featured the formerly-disgraced Trent Lott beating Lamar Alexander by a single vote for the job of minority whip, nobody raised such apocalyptic concerns.

Focusing On A "Snub"

After Nancy Pelosi was chosen as speaker and Hoyer won out over Murtha, the AP chose to frame their story this way:
Democrats embraced Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi as the first woman House speaker in history, then quickly snubbed her, selecting a rival as her lieutenant against her wishes.
One would think that they might choose to focus a bit more on the historical fact that the first woman...the first Italian-American...had been selected unanimously to be speaker.

But no, the focus was on the snub.

Anybody want to lay odds on what the GOP talking points this week have been? Or how closely major media outlets have let those talking points rule the way this story has been covered?

Murtha, Hoyer, Pelosi Are All Winners

Make no mistake, all the parties involved have come out ahead.

Rep. Hoyer gets rewarded for helping fund many of his fellow Democrats' campaigns. Nancy Pelosi gets a unified 'seal of approval.' And Rep. Murtha comes out of this okay, as well. He will wind up with real power on the Iraqi front when he gets to chair a subcomittee that controls the Pentagon's purse-strings.

The Real Loser

The real loser in this story, once again, is the media.

The same media that allowed George Bush to invade Iraq unchallenged...that refused to examine Bush's war record while allowing Kerry to get lambasted for his...that has consistently allowed Bush to incorrectly frame his theft of Constitutional rights as a righteous fight in a mythological war on terror...has shown us their hand once again.

What I am wondering is why the media powers-that-be hate the Democrats so much?

Exactly what are they afraid of?


Naomi said...

Well, here's one person's take on "why": Rove needs to stage-manage the Dems image, in order to recast the republicans as temperate, calm and rational statesmen. You will notice that they appear to behave well these last few days...

The obfuscation begins today; come January, the obstructionism will arrive.

Let the games begin!


Anonymous said...

Why? Howzabout Big Media?

Maybe it's something to do with slavishly avoiding giving offense to the obscenely wealthy handful who effectively own the megacorporate parent companies of all the major media outlets left, right and center?

Nah. It's just a coincidence.

Marie of Roumania

Anonymous said...

THis was all engineered during the Reagan years-on, but it began during Reagan--deregulation of the airwaves under the guise of 'less-government' (for people). Time to bring-back the Fairness Doctrine as law at the FCC. The Democratic party is the only one that has attempted this--twice in the late-80s and early-1990s. Guess who voted against this? The GOP. Make fair and equal time a condition of owning any licencing for outlets of any sort in the United States.

Naomi said...

Matt: There's no doubt that we all lost something when Reagan "dismantled" the Fairness Doctrine.

(Note to self: beware right-wing words like--"reform", "dismantle", "deconstruct", "deregulate" and "XYZ recovery act".)

We lost again, when Bill Clinton "deregulated" media, allowing for the formation of monopolies. We are down to five major and one minor players, holding all the cards and dealing them out to us from the bottom of the deck.

And we now hear that ClearChannel has been bought, and will be taken private! That has some serious implications; however, the FCC rules are universal, whether public or private. One can wish the rules the FCC chooses to enforce were done by common-sense, rather than by dogmatic ideology of the right-wing variety.

So, I have made Speaker-to-be Pelosi and Majority Leader-to-be Reid aware of my opinion of these problems and hope that both chambers do the right and righteous thing.

I have heard the strangest thing: USAir is planning a hostile takeover of AirAmericaRadio! I harbor a small hope that they think AAR is another airline and will abandon their attempt...

On the other hand, I also worry that AAR may be bought only to turn it into just another cookie-cutter "bloviation central".


remny said...

US Air taking over Air America is a JOKE by Al Franken.

Naomi said...

Glad to hear that! But I wouldn't know because I don't listen to Al Franken anymore. Since he ran Katherine Lanpher off, it hasn't been very interesting. In fact, it's been so boring, I'd listen to E! (XM162) before I'd tune in to Franken! And I hate Hollywood gossip!

(BTW, I heard it on Sam Seder's show. And I thought he was a little too casual and off-hand about it, for it to be genuine...)

But I'm still worried about AAR's survival.


Anonymous said...

Good point, I'd like to think that the mainstream media is just looking for blood whereever they can find it.
But I truly appreciated your words that Pelosi,Hoyer and Murtha, are all winners, and the paragraph that substantiated that.
This is the truth of the situation, no matter how the media spin comes down.