The lesson of the last 24 hours is…Fox News is nothing more than a right wing propaganda outfit that is willing to air lies and committ slander if it serves a purpose of helping conservatives, the rest of the media is too horny for scandal to realize it or do its own research and we, as a country, cannot exist with a government that has to preempt an impending media narrative every morning before breakfast.
In the first few hours I heard about this tape, I pretty much sense doom. Morning Joe didn’t even bother to question the source, but did question Ms. Sherrod’s sincerity. In one segment, he said it wasn’t hard to believe the story since her father was killed by white farmers.
CNN began bringing up Eric Holder and Black Panthers, prepared to go on a “how many radical black people are there in the administration”
and then the scandal was broken. Ms. Sherrod was forced to resign.
This is a perfect example of the catch-22 situation the administration is often forced into, especially on this topic. Was it realistic to believe the truth would eventually come out? Did most people hear the truth about ACORN? Rev. Wright?
My views sorta match those of Joshua Green;
Breitbart focuses on race. Today’s episode with Shirley Sherrod, who was forced to resign from the Agriculture Department on the basis of a doctored and intentionally misleading videotape (see below), is an especially ugly case in point, calculated to stir the very worst racial resentments. This time the political world–the NAACP, the Agriculture Secretary–moved as quickly as the media world to unthinking response, and I suspect it happened precisely because race was involved. I don’t doubt that the administration’s understandable desire to avoid racial issues played a big part in how this turned out.
But what’s galling to me–gut-wrenching, really, like watching old news footage of blacks being beaten and clubbed at lunch counters–is that Breitbart obviously understood the powerful effect his tape would have, posted it anyway, and then assumed the role of ringmaster, expertly conducting the media circus, fanning the flames. It’s hardly the first time. But the moral ugliness of what’s just happened is glaring, and it’s hard for me to see how the media can justify continuing to treat Breitbart as simply a roguish provocateur. He’s something much darker.
This presents the perfect opportunity to take on the media and what is wrong with it. I spent many years as a television producer, I know the drill.
There is only one rule when you’re producing TV news, beat your competitor, break the story. You don’t have time to verify facts. If you don’t break the story first, you’re in hot water. I can’t tell you how many times I get the treatment from my bosses who told me not to waste time verifying fats because “most of what we report is true”
It was the media’s job to verify that the tape was false, but they didn’t and because they didn’t, it was reasonable to believe they never would.
and with race, well, the media is so obsessed with having a “national dialogue on race” that we’re not actually having one. The media is desperate for a racially-baed scandal. CNN wants to use those “Black in America” chyrons again. Chris Matthews wants to discuss how white people are fleeing Obama and racism exists everywhere. Fox News wants to scare the shit out of its minions, making them think Angela Davis and her army of White-hating Communist Muslims are coming to take them away.
And until the media, you know, decides to do its job, the the White House is going to be forced into responding in the least negative way every time something like this happens