Where have all the journalists gone? Part 2

April 20, 2008 by susan
Bill O'Reilly

Appropos of Barb's post on the so-called ABC debate, watch this and weep.
I'm not even going to try to figure out how to post a video, because this one involves two videos. Go to The Brad Blog to see how Fox "news" will do its "fair and balanced" best to make sure John McCain is our next president. (And hat-tip to son Max.)

Okay, so it's Bill O'Reilly, and no one takes him seriously, right? Right. And everyone knows that Fox news is a biased font of misinformation. Right? So why do so many people still believe that Barack Obama has a "muslim" past and that he hates America? If you thought the campaign so far has been repugnant, you ain't seen nothing yet. If I were Barack Obama I'd be very tempted to say, "Know what? I don't need this." and walk away. Hillary? She seems to thrive on it. Read on for a recap.

First is an on-the-fly interview of a Catholic priest named Michael Pfleger by a Fox "news" reporter. Pfleger speaks intelligently to the sort of man Rev. Wright is and to the message behind the rhetoric.

The second is of Bill O'Reilly, using a 5 second clip of that 6 minute interview -- the throw-away moment when Pfleger says that he knows Jeremiah Wright to be a good man, and adds, Louis Farrakhan too. Kabooom! O'Reilly is livid with indignation and brings on two guests to support his righteous ire and to call on the Catholic church to sanction Pfleger. One of his guests condemns Pfleger (who's already on the fringes, bloviates O'Reilly, because he's adopted two children -- "nothing wrong with that I want to add . . .") but she doesn't go far enough for Billow because she doesn't think that the Catholic church should sanction Pfleger. And, she says Farrakhan has accomplished some good -- the Million Man march, for instance. Billow cuts her off, tells her she's crazy. "Every villain in history did good things," he says. "Not Hitler," she replies, "it's not analogous."
Every one says the American people are smart, they'll see beyond this junk. I ask you, will they? Recent electoral history makes me think -- maybe not.

Posted in


barbara | April 21, 2008 - 11:03am

Every one says the American people are smart, they'll see beyond this junk. I ask you, will they?

The problem as I see it is that we leave that pretty much to chance. Remember the brilliant handlers who exhorted Kerry to just let the Swiftboat attacks roll off his back? Likely the same brilliant handlers (or facsimiles thereof) who coached Al Gore to stay calm in the face of outrageous attacks on his character and credentials. The presumption being, I gather, that the American people are smart enough to see through crap. The thing is, crap is not transparent.

Who're we going to anoint as our credible truth-teller? Someone Americans will listen to and, in the best of all worlds, believe?

Much as I enjoy their stuff, probably not Olbermann or Stewart or Colbert (way too subtle, in the way of a local leftie blog commenter who calls himself Typical Frightened Right Wing Guy and dishes out neocon drivel in a totally satirical way, only to be called a troll).

For my money, overall, it's McClatchy for print/web news. Way too out of touch with TV to comment on that. Where the heck are today's Walter Cronkites, Edward R. Murrows, good ol' Huntley and Brinkley? You know it's bad when Geraldo starts looking good by comparison to today's "journalists."