Wednesday, July 18, 2007


This morning I had CNN on and it took a Herculean effort to resist throwing something heavy at the screen. As others have documented, press coverage of the Senate Iraq debate has been shocking in its bias. CNN never used the word filibuster. It positioned the whole thing as a Democratic stunt, and parroted the new line that the ordinary course in the Senate is that bills require 60 votes to pass.

My local paper was just as bad, running an appalling AP hatchet job. Here is the letter I just sent to the paper:

I learned some fascinating things from the AP story you titled "Serious Senate slumber party on Iraq" about the debate in the Senate.

I learned that when Democrats sought to block confirmation of conservative judicial nominees in 2003, that was a "filibuster." I learned that when Republicans sought to block a vote on a bill that would end the Iraq war, that tactic must be something different entirely, because the word "filibuster" did not appear once in reference to what the Republicans are now doing.

I learned that now that it is Republicans who refuse to allow a vote, Democratic attempts to force a vote are instead an "attention grabbing marathon." In other words, I learned that when Democrats were in the minority, blocking an up-or-down vote was obstruction, but when Republicans are in the minority, seeking an up-or-down vote is "maneuvering."

And finally, I learned that, despite Knight-Ridder's well-deserved reputation as one of the few news sources to properly question the Administration's mythology justifying the invasion of Iraq, Administration spin can still make it into the Mercury News unmolested.

The next time you receive your talking points memo from the Republicans, please do us all a favor -- just publish the memo.
I know I should not expect any better. But I am starting to feel a lot more sympathy for Harry Reid -- he really is facing a three-on-one in his attempts to do the right thing.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

You must realize that our media is more like propoganda. I don't know if it has always been but it leans unabashedly in that direction progressively as time moves.

11:09 AM  

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