Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Journalistic Integrity, Political Flack/Hackery and Media Bias, an Essay in 3 Parts (with Video!!!!)

Part 1: Campbell Brown on Campaign Journalism, BS, Pregnancy, and Callin' it Like it Is
Campbell Brown visited the Daily Show yesterday and among other things discussed CNN's goals with regards to campaign coverage. She nicely summed up her goals, saying, "If one candidate is saying it's raining and the other says it's sunny we should be able to look outside and say, 'it's sunny.' Which means one guy is wrong!" It's a simple concept, but one so easily lost in the world of debate-style match-ups of talking heads from "each side" of an issue and demands that equal time go to each side, or that fairness or balanc-ed-ness is measured in the number of minutes given to each "side" while the other often has the opportunity to blabber over them as much as they can manage.

Part 2: Taking Flack Poster Child Tucker Bounds to School
I've got a growing list of campaign flacks I hate, and I think anyone who watches cable news with any regularity likely does as well. While I've been an Obama fan for awhile, I don't think John McCain has helped himself by having Nancy Pfotenhauer and Tucker Carlson Bounds out there spewing idiocy on his behalf. How bad is Mr. Bounds? Apparently at least 3 cable news outlets have more or less taken him to school. Check out the video (I couldn't embed this one) by following the link.

Part 3: Bill Burton Won't Back Down
The left has talked about Fox News' bias for quite some time now, and that bias has been documented in various ways (but honestly, what progressive who has watched Faux News for more than 5 minutes even feels like documentation is actually necessary?). Anyway, the Obama campaign has recently gone after Faux News head-on with the candidate himself even taking some digs here or there. Bill Burton, a campaign spokesman, recently released a statement about Fox picking up and distributing a story no other major news network has touched after the Drudge Report started the rumor mill churning a day before. Fox had him on to get a spanking, but Bill Burton would not take his licks quietly, no no. Instead, what they got is the combative exchange you see below. Nice.

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