July 27, 2004

And Even More Liberal Press Bias

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The first day of the Democratic convention was startlingly effective, with fantastic speeches that energized the crowd and helped define the essence of the Democratic party, with speakers Al Gore, Jimmy Carter, and Hillary and Bill Clinton making memorable, pointed remarks that would have a great impact on the American public.

If they ever get to see them--after all, there turn out to be even more incredible and earth-shaking stories out there: Teresa Heinz Kerry told a reporter to "shove it" and John Kerry wore a clean-room suit.

I mean, come on.

The Teresa Kerry matter was baldly misrepresented in the press. In the reports I've seen, they showed Teresa making a statement about needing "to turn back some of the creeping un-Pennsylvanian and sometimes un-American traits that are coming into some of our politics." That followed by a reporter asking her about the meaning of the word "un-American," followed by her coming back later and telling him to "shove it." Posed that way, it made Teresa look bad, especially when they pointed out that she had just "criticized the tenor of modern political campaigns."

But the reports were edited. They did not tell us the fact that the reporter, Colin McNickle, was a far-right-wing opinion columnist and editor for a staunchly conservative newspaper owned by right-wing hatchet man Richard Scaife, and had been hassling Kerry--they took the few moments of the conflict completely out of context. They did not show McNickle claiming that Heinz-Kerry had said "un-American activities," a misquote with McCarthyist connotations. Teresa did goof--instead of saying, "I did not say 'un-American activities," she said, "I did not say activity or un-American." In fact, she did say "un-American." But McNickle also did misquote her, giving her words a McCarthyist spin. And Teresa did say something that she shouldn't have.

However, she was justified--she had been misquoted, and goaded, by an antagonistic reporter. But the press ignored all that, edited and colored the episode to make her look bad, supposedly because it was a lot flashier to focus on a potential first lady saying "shove it" on TV.

And then John Kerry, at the Florida Space Center, visited one of the shuttles, and like everyone else, put on a clean suit. Yes, he looked a bit funny. But a "Michael Dukakis moment," as one CNN reporter put it? Give me a break. It was a clean suit, they all look like that, he would have been irresponsible to refuse to wear it, and while funky, it was not ridiculous.

But Kerry in the clean suit and Teresa saying "shove it" were the big stories. All over the place. Top coverage.

The speeches by senior statesmen, former presidents, important people, which pointed out that the country is on the wrong track and needs to be corrected? That the economy has to be reversed, good jobs have to be created, real attention paid to education and health care reform, those and so many other points that make up the Democratic message? The message that the press puzzles as to why it isn't being heard? Well, put on page two, boys, we can show pictures of Kerry in a clean suit and call him "Bubble Boy"!!

Not that this is new. The CNN lead after Al Gore's speech showed him in a photo-frozen pose looking stupid. As evidenced below that image, see other recent CNN photos of Gore:

Certainly not complimentary.

And Bush? Here are similar recent images:

Not exactly the same, are they?

Damn that liberal media! They always make the Democrats look so good, and never give Bush a break!

I mean, Bush fell off his bicycle--again!--just today, and not a word of it reaches the front pages. A president who can't even ride a bike, and Kerry wearing a clean suit beats that out? That's not equal reporting--if you're going to report trivial crapola mocking one candidate, then you do it for both. I wouldn't like to think about where my blood pressure would be if I had to endure FOX News, instead of just the moderately-right-wing CNN.

And while I'm at it, let's look at the press perpetuating lies and repeating bush talking points. The media outlets that did carry the Bush-bike story tended to explain it by saying that Bush rides his bike "hard," like he's a tough guy, not an uncoordinated weenie. They write gushingly that Bush "rides with abandon... takes on dangerous sections that would give veterans pause." And when speaking of his falling off his bike the last time, they repeat, as if it were fact, the assertion that Bush slipped on "soil loosened by rainfall," when in fact it had not rained there for more than a week.

Please. Just change your name to "Bush Campaign Headquarters" and be done with it.

Posted by Luis at July 27, 2004 10:34 PM

Is there any truth behind this information posted on snopes.com?

House #1
A 20 room mansion ( not including 8 bathrooms ) heated by natural gas.
Add on a pool ( and a pool house) and a separate guest house, all heated by gas. In one month this residence consumes more energy than the average American household does in a year. The average bill for electricity and
natural gas runs over $2400. In natural gas alone, this property
consumes more than 20 times the national average for an American home.
This house is not situated in a Northern or Midwestern "snow belt"
It's in the South.

House #2
Designed by an architecture professor at a leading national university.
This house incorporates every "green" feature current home construction can provide. The house is 4,000 square feet ( 4 bedrooms ) and is nestled on a high prairie in the American southwest. A central closet in the house holds geothermal heat-pumps drawing ground water through pipes sunk 300 feet into the ground. The water (usually 67 degrees F. ) heats the house in the winter and cools it in the summer. The system uses no fossil fuels such as oil or natural gas and it consumes one-quarter electricity required for a conventional heating/cooling system. Rainwater from the roof is collected and funneled into a 25,000 gallon underground cistern. Wastewater from showers, sinks and toilets goes into underground purifying tanks and then into the cistern. The collected water then
irrigates the land surrounding the house. Surrounding flowers and
native to the area enable the property to blend into the surrounding rural landscape.

HOUSE #1 is outside of Nashville, Tennessee; it is the abode of the "environmentalist" Al Gore.

HOUSE #2 is on a ranch near Crawford, Texas; it is the residence the of the President of the United States, George W. Bush.

An "inconvenient truth".

Posted by: cmayer at August 17, 2007 10:13 AM

A politically slanted piece, one that exaggerates figures, focuses on specific contrasts, and completely ignores mitigating factors, including the fact that the Gore "house" also functions as a business office. This is an excellent example of using *part* of the truth to lie--a favorite tactic of conservatives. Congratulations for buying into it!

An example of an exaggerated figure is that the Gore home uses 12, not 20 times the energy of a home in that city. Part of this is because it is 4 times larger than an average home--meaning that it uses only 3 times (perhaps less, considering energy use factors) the average amount of energy for a Nashville home--and much if not all of that can be accounted for by the fact that the building doubles as a business, with staff and a great deal of equipment. This comparison also does not factor in the amount of time each residence is occupied.

The fact that the home doubles as an office for both Al and Tipper Gore is one of the major overlooked factors, in that using energy for the business offices at the estate means that a greater amount of energy does not need to be expended elsewhere; it takes less energy to run a large home/office complex than it does to run a home and two separate office complexes.

The comparison also fails to note that the Gores pay a premium for their energy bills so that much of the the energy they purchase is generated from clean sources(in effect, doing the same as the Bush ranch but doing so remotely), and the rest of the energy use is offset by purchasing carbon credits--in effect, paying others elsewhere not to pollute.

All that your cut-and-pasted attack piece shows that if you filter the facts enough, slant your argument heavily, and are intellectually dishonest, you can "prove" anything. An honest appraisal of *all* the facts is far less fun, I am sure, but a great deal more descriptive of reality.

Posted by: Luis at August 17, 2007 07:20 PM