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Bloggingheads 04-02-2008 01:30 PM

MSM = Media Supporting McCain?
 

Joel_Cairo 04-02-2008 02:12 PM

Re: MSM = Media Supporting McCain?
 
Thank god. I've been refreshing the homepage every hour or so hoping not to see Goldfarb's pudgy smirk, and it finally happened.

harkin 04-02-2008 02:15 PM

Re: MSM = Media Supporting McCain?
 
I hope Ana Marie gives an update on the Drudge Report no longer being relevant.

thprop 04-02-2008 02:20 PM

MSM in the tank in general
 
I don't buy Ana Marie's argument at all. Appearances are important. Even if it was just a joke, the media should not go around reinforcing it.

I would also like to see an end to things like the Gridiron Club dinner, White House Correspondents dinner, etc. I think the press should never be at all chummy with the people it covers. The press should be adversarial and appear adversarial.

Also, an end to anonymous quotes. No more "senior White House official" crap.

deebee 04-02-2008 02:59 PM

Re: MSM = Media Supporting McCain?
 
It is often said that in political life both actual wrongdoing as well as any perception of it is to be guarded against. I believe that this should also apply to those journalists who present themselves as objective observers. Even the slightest appearance of a too-cozy relationship with a public figure taints their reporting in the public eye even if they are able to divorce themselves from their personal feelings

Also, if McCain and Obama end up as the final nominees it will be interesting to see who gets the more favorable coverage since it has been the "perception" (wrongly or rightly) that the MSM is in the tank for both of them.

Joel_Cairo 04-02-2008 03:14 PM

Re: MSM = Media Supporting McCain?
 
Am I mistaken, or is Glenn flubbing this here?
If I recall correctly, McCain's post-Lieberman-whisper correction changed "Al Qaeda" to "Extremists" rather than, as Glenn says, "Shi'ite Extremists." There's certainly a big difference, as AQ is a possible subgroup of "Extremists", but would be excluded from the "Shi'ite Extremist" formulation. I remember McCain's statement as an obfuscation, just blurring his statement a bit so as not to catch as much flak; Glenn posits that McCain actually effectively retracted the AQ/Iran link...?

lowellfield 04-02-2008 03:15 PM

Re: MSM = Media Supporting McCain?
 
Good pairing. I like Greenwald a lot, and Cox is the by far the best of the Swamplanders.

The big problem with it is that Cox clearly knows that Glenn is the most vitriolic scourge of the MSM from the liberal perspective, and her sense of tribal solidarity clearly overrides that part of her which has made many of the same criticisms as Greenwald. I guess it's good to the extent that it makes for more disagreement, but she seems to be going to great lengths to just oppose the DFH for its own sake.

David Edenden 04-02-2008 03:19 PM

Re: McCain's "Al Qaeda" Remark
 
Glen, it seems to me that the general discussion in American politics is to use "Al Qaeda" to represent all "Islamic extremism" or Islamo-Fascism" without differentiating between Shia or Sunni groups.

It is a mild mistake and the media was correct to see it that way.

lowellfield 04-02-2008 03:26 PM

Re: McCain's "Al Qaeda" Remark
 
No, that's ridiculous. The president of the United States need to understand what's going on in the Middle East on a more granular level than Muslims = Bad Guys. "Who can tell the difference?" is a piss poor excuse.

bjkeefe 04-02-2008 03:31 PM

Re: MSM = Media Supporting McCain?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Joel_Cairo (Post 73111)
Am I mistaken, or is Glenn flubbing this here?
If I recall correctly, McCain's post-Lieberman-whisper correction changed "Al Qaeda" to "Extremists" rather than, as Glenn says, "Shi'ite Extremists." There's certainly a big difference, as AQ is a possible subgroup of "Extremists", but would be excluded from the "Shi'ite Extremist" formulation. I remember McCain's statement as an obfuscation, just blurring his statement a bit so as not to catch as much flak; Glenn posits that McCain actually effectively retracted the AQ/Iran link...?

I think your dingalink is messed up -- it doesn't have Glenn talking.

McCain, after being corrected by Lieberman, just said "extremists;" i.e., with no "islamist" or "shiite" modifier, at least in this case: (CBS video)

Since he "misspoke" on other occasions as well, it's possible he added the modifier on those occasions, but the video I linked to is the one that seems to be the reference point for most of this coverage.

Abu Noor Al-Irlandee 04-02-2008 03:34 PM

Re: MSM = Media Supporting McCain?
 
He said "extremists," but then he also specifically said, "NOT Al-Qa'ida"

http://abunooralirlandee.wordpress.com

garbagecowboy 04-02-2008 03:35 PM

Re: MSM = Media Supporting McCain?
 
_____________

lowellfield 04-02-2008 03:36 PM

Re: MSM in the tank in general
 
I kind of agree. I don't know why she's so determined to defend McCain and the coverage of him, but it leads her to say things which go beyond naive to childish.

...and that bit at the end where she gets pissed at Glenn ("I wasn't asking for advice, actually...")? No, she wasn't asking for advice. She was whining about the negative impact mean comments (like this one) have on her writing. Glenn was telling her to suck it up, which she should.

Abu Noor Al-Irlandee 04-02-2008 03:36 PM

Re: MSM in the tank in general
 
In addition to that, I think Mr. Greenwald makes the most important observation about the conversation over on his blog. Ms. Cox begins by arguing that having a friendly/cordial relationship doesn't mean the media can't deal with politicians in an objective/challenging manner then she spends the whole diavlog making weak arguments which attempt to search for the most sympathetic possible reading of both McCain and her journalistic colleagues in general.

http://abunooralirlandee.wordpress.com

Abu Noor Al-Irlandee 04-02-2008 03:43 PM

Re: McCain's "Al Qaeda" Remark
 
lowellfield is right on...I don't know what passes for common expression in the general media but there's a big difference between Al-Qa'ida and "Shi'ite Extremists." Not only are these two groups that absolutely hate each other and fight each other but, as Mr. Greenwald points out in the diavlog, the so-called Bush doctrine means that if a state supports or is linked to Al-Qa'ida is supposed to be justified to invade and occupy them. Mr. McCain's original allegation would be an implied argument that Iran should be invaded. It makes a big difference and that's a really strange argument Mr. Edenden.

http://abunooralirlandee.wordpress.com

bjkeefe 04-02-2008 03:47 PM

Re: MSM = Media Supporting McCain?
 
deebee:

Quote:

Also, if McCain and Obama end up as the final nominees it will be interesting to see who gets the more favorable coverage since it has been the "perception" (wrongly or rightly) that the MSM is in the tank for both of them.
There are plenty of us who think the MSM has been in the tank just as much concerning Clinton. The most recent example is the "sniper fire" thing. This is a story she has been telling, at length, as part of her stump speech. I don't know how this isn't being labeled a fantasy or a lie. Instead, it is almost always referred to as "Clinton misspoke." This seems to me an awfully forgiving way to put it. This was not a slip of the tongue by any stretch.

Another example is the attitude on the part of most of the MSM in covering how "close" she is in the race. Until very recently, the typical horserace story did not reflect the extreme unlikelihood that she could catch Obama in the count of pledged delegates. Her wins on March 5 were treated as a huge change in momentum when, in fact, she netted only a few delegates. These gains were completely negated by the next couple of contests, another part of the race that was not prominently mentioned in the typical front page story. Only in the past couple of weeks has the reality of Obama's lead been admitted.

Final example: Clinton gets almost no critical coverage for her continued insistence that MI and FL count, or that they must have re-votes, or whatever. Stories reporting on the daily statements to this effect by Clinton and members of her campaign rarely include context; e.g., the fact that she agreed at the beginning of the campaign that those states were out of play.

bjkeefe 04-02-2008 04:00 PM

Re: MSM = Media Supporting McCain?
 
Adam:

Quote:

Wonkette has gone downhill since she left ...
I thought she was completely gone, too. If this is the case, the video page for the diavlog is in error. Note that she is not listed among the Wonkette personnel in their sidebar.

Quote:

Greenwald, as is typical of his previous bh.tv appearances, works himself into a frenzy and comes off as unconvincing and hysterical.
To you, perhaps. I think he's a little unpleasant and resorts to exaggerating for effect more than is useful, but I do think he makes his points and that those points are convincing. I think he established that there is good reason to suspect a reporter's ability to remain objective about McCain when that reporter is regularly riding on the McCain bus. I also think he made a good case that the MSM, in general, makes a lot of favorable assumptions about McCain's supposed foreign affairs expertise. Did he "win" this debate? Not necessarily. But I think he was convincing enough that a previously uninformed watcher would at least say "hmmm."

I'll add that Ana Marie's view was not without merit. Having been raised by a reporter, I may have more sympathy for the complications faced by a reporter than the average viewer, though.

One final point that was neglected by both Glenn and Ana Marie: Whatever else one might think about McCain, he deserves credit for his understanding of the media and how to deal with them. There's a bit of cynicism in that observation, to be sure, but there's also some unalloyed respect.

Abu Noor Al-Irlandee 04-02-2008 04:12 PM

Glenn Greenwald is from Mars, Ana Marie Cox is from Venus
 
I think this bit here lapses into parody of the stereotypical discussion of communication problems between men and women. Ms. Cox goes on for over 3 1/2 minutes about a "crisis" she has been having in approaching her job which she thinks has made her "writing suffer" and she's "not sure if it's healthy." Mr. Greenwald makes some more general observations but then makes the big mistake of trying to offer a "solution" to Ms. Cox's "problem."

http://bloggingheads.tv/diavlogs/988...4:36&out=45:12

http://abunooralirlandee.wordpress.com

bjkeefe 04-02-2008 04:19 PM

Re: Parody of Gender communication sterotypes
 
Good observation, Abu Noor, and a more polite way than I would have put it. I found a lot of that segment pretty cringe-worthy, and I could only hope for Ana Marie's sake that her boss wasn't watching. To be fair, she came off a little better when she restated her original thoughts, but still. For someone who made her bones in the blogosphere, she came off as awfully thin-skinned during that bit.

And you're right: that closing bit about "I wasn't asking you to solve my problems" was just classic stereotype behavior. I'll be the first to admit that men try way too often to do this in conversation with the women in their lives when they really should just be listening, but a diavlog between people who are not, AFAIK, involved was no place for this. Made for some serious eye-rolling.

Wonderment 04-02-2008 04:48 PM

Re: MSM = Media Supporting McCain?
 
Quote:

There are plenty of us who think the MSM has been in the tank just as much concerning Clinton.
Interesting. My overall impression is that Clinton gets a negative treatment (often sexist) from both sides. The hardcore Republicans in the media hate her as if she were a criminal with a rap sheet a mile long; the liberals are pro-Obama across the board. Hillary's support comes from non-college-educated Dems and older women, which may be a majority in the country, but are a tiny minority in the media.

I say this as an Obama supporter and as someone who entirely agrees that her statements about Bosnia should be identified as "lies," not mistakes.

jazztao 04-02-2008 05:31 PM

Re: MSM = Media Supporting McCain?
 
Ms. Cox actually says, "Iím not concerned about being wrong. Iím concerned about people not listening to what I say."

Now, she can argue that this is taken out of context, but I believe strongly that that is exactly how she's feeling right now. In todays journalism it is simply not important to get the story right or objectively; it's only important that you get eyeballs. Don't forget how many times she claimed that the "media loves to be part of the story". That's Psych 101 projection, and it embodies the trouble with the MSM: the problem is always out there somewhere with some other journalist or publication. There is no one in the MSM currently willing to honestly look in the mirror, or better yet, remove the plank from their own eye.

Thanks again Glen, for shining a light into the darkness!

AemJeff 04-02-2008 05:41 PM

Re: MSM = Media Supporting McCain?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by jazztao (Post 73129)
Ms. Cox actually says, "Iím not concerned about being wrong. Iím concerned about people not listening to what I say."

Now, she can argue that this is taken out of context, but I believe strongly that that is exactly how she's feeling right now. In todays journalism it is simply not important to get the story right or objectively; it's only important that you get eyeballs. Don't forget how many times she claimed that the "media loves to be part of the story". That's Psych 101 projection, and it embodies the trouble with the MSM: the problem is always out there somewhere with some other journalist or publication. There is no one in the MSM currently willing to honestly look in the mirror, or better yet, remove the plank from their own eye.

Thanks again Glen, for shining a light into the darkness!

You might also read that quote as evidence of a degree of humility. I doubt she's saying she doesn't care about the truth. Rather: regardless of whether she gets something right, she hopes that her interlocutors will take into account her actual arguments.

sleepyhead 04-02-2008 05:43 PM

Re: Parody of Gender communication sterotypes
 
I didn't find that cringe-worthy, although I think my mind wandered a bit during that section, so I wasn't paying close attention to what she was saying. (How typically male of me, to get distracted while a woman is trying share her deep feelings!)

Although I tend to agree with Greenwald on the merits, I found myself instinctively siding with Cox. It's not only that she's so pretty and likable and he's so phlegmatic and humorless, although that's definitely part of it; it's also the fact that although I think he's correct on most of the issues, I find his analysis to be way too black and white and unforgiving. While I think much of the press's treatment of McCain is an embarassment, I also tend to favor the Cox view of the world, where things are complicated and it's hard to make categorical statements about an entire profession, etc.

uncle ebeneezer 04-02-2008 05:56 PM

Re: MSM = Media Supporting McCain?
 
She got butchered (on the tat). Very shoddy work. The lines are pretty blurry. Unless she put on major weight since getting it, she went to a less-capable artist than she should have.

I find it somewhat annoying that every MSM critical commentary on McCain has to be prefaced by mentioning that he is a war hero, patriot or great American etc. Even if it's true, it always seems beside the point to me.

sleepyhead 04-02-2008 06:06 PM

Re: MSM = Media Supporting McCain?
 
Indeed, she had said earlier in the conversation that all she really cared about was being accurate, and she didn't think it mattered whether there was some perception that journalists were too cozy with the people they cover. Essentially she was asking for people to judge her work on whether it was correct, instead of on whether she attended a barbecue at his ranch or spent 6 hours schmoozing with him on the back of his campaign bus.

So when she says her concern is not getting things wrong, she obviously meant that when she's writing a post or an article, she knows that she'll get hammered by partisans for being too soft or too hard on a candidate, but few people will care what she wrote was accurate or not. She was bemoaning the fact that commenters don't seem to care about accuracy anymore, rather than saying that she didn't care about whether she got things wrong.

So jazztao, you just confirmed her theory that commenters aren't interested in listening to her argument and taking it seriously, because they are too busy jumping on her for being biased or a hack or a sellout or...

TwinSwords 04-02-2008 06:16 PM

Thanks, Ana!
 
LOL, she has absolutely no idea that she spent an hour proving Glenn's point.

She really doesn't like anyone saying anything bad about McCain!

And, man, it was one insult after another from her, wasn't it? I realize she does it with her big ol' smile, but her hostility towards Glenn was constant from beginning to end.

PaulL 04-02-2008 06:32 PM

Re: Thanks, Ana!
 
I noticed that the biggest bloggingheads d*ckweeds Glenn Greenwald and Eric Alterman will only talk to people on bloggingheads who agree with them or they can easily bully.
I heard Glenn on Hugh Hewitt and he was not at all confrontational.

I would love to see Glenn and Eric against Ann Althouse, Jonah Goldberg or Byron York.

zenweight 04-02-2008 06:39 PM

Re: MSM = Media Supporting McCain?
 
That was truly weird. Did Ana feel so personally attacked by Glenn that this unusual behaviour resulted? I haven't seen such defensive, unstructured and patronising communication in any BH divlog. And arrogant in a deeper sense- not just the valley girlish rolling of the eyes and ubiquitous quick put down- but the arrogance of one who appears closed to learning, closed to considering anothers opinion and challenging ones own assumptions.

Congrats to Glenn, for making a clear case and staying composed.

TwinSwords 04-02-2008 06:45 PM

Re: McCain's "Al Qaeda" Remark
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by David Edenden (Post 73113)
Glen, it seems to me that the general discussion in American politics is to use "Al Qaeda" to represent all "Islamic extremism" or Islamo-Fascism" without differentiating between Shia or Sunni groups..

That's an amazing concession to make to intellectual laziness and an especially damaging one since, in 2008, there are no more inflammatory words in the English language than "al Qaeda."

You might as well us "Nazi" to represent all Germans.

carpenterale 04-02-2008 06:49 PM

Let's listen to Ms. McCain
 
I'd like to add this to the evidence for what Glenn argues. I find it difficult to watch this video, posted by McCain's daughter cooing about the flowers the "guys from Politico" brought Mrs. McCain and not think about reporters giddy to curry favor with their subjects.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xp0iHOk0mEQ

Watch John Martin helping McCain grill ribs, Holly Bailey on the tire swing - of course they'll give their pal a pass.

TwinSwords 04-02-2008 06:52 PM

Re: McCain's "Al Qaeda" Remark
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Abu Noor Al-Irlandee (Post 73121)
lowellfield is right on...

You and lowellfield are both right on.

And this is precisely the point made by Heather Hurlburt -- the dangers of conflating various disparate Islamic groups -- that set that idiot Berman to sputtering about "92 questions."

Berman was completely unable to respond to Hurlbert's point, which is unfortunate for all of us.

Damn fool.

TwinSwords 04-02-2008 06:55 PM

Re: MSM in the tank in general
 
Exactly. She sincerly seems to have no idea that she was visibly and desperately trying to protect McCain.

It was simply astonishing that she had never considered the possibility that McCain (and Republicans generally) would dishonestly use the spectre of Al Qaeda to gin up support for their foreign policy ambitions (in this case, the hardline approach to Iran).

It just goes to show how incredibly naive a person can be and still hold a powerful and important position at a true media juggernaut.

TwinSwords 04-02-2008 06:58 PM

Re: MSM = Media Supporting McCain?
 
And, adding to what Brendan and Abu Noor said, that was the whole point of the dustup: That Iran would help Shiite extremists, but not Sunni extremists.

TwinSwords 04-02-2008 07:00 PM

Re: MSM = Media Supporting McCain?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Wonderment (Post 73127)
Interesting. My overall impression is that Clinton gets a negative treatment (often sexist) from both sides.

I agree -- and this still predominates, in my opinion, however I will say that I think the media has scaled back some of its open and outright hostility towards Clinton since the SNL skits that exposed them as the shills they are.

TwinSwords 04-02-2008 07:03 PM

Re: MSM = Media Supporting McCain?
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by garbagecowboy (Post 73118)
Greenwald, as is typical of his previous bh.tv appearances

Plural? You're not aware he was only on once before?



Quote:

Originally Posted by garbagecowboy (Post 73118)
[Glenn] works himself into a frenzy and comes off as unconvincing and hysterical.

I wonder if you could do us all a favor and dingalink to a moment in this diavlog when Glenn was in a frenzy or acting hysterical.

bjkeefe 04-02-2008 07:11 PM

Re: MSM = Media Supporting McCain?
 
Wonderment:

Quote:

My overall impression is that Clinton gets a negative treatment (often sexist) from both sides.
There's something to that. There's also something to be said for her, and her campaign, having earned it. Not the sexist part, of course, just the negative treatment.

Yes, I do agree she suffers some sexist treatment. On the other hand, she gets a bit of an assist here, too, both from women who like her for being a woman and from both genders excessively worrying about appearing sexist.

Obama is in a similar boat -- he gets some kid-glove treatment from people who like him just for being black, or who fear seeming racist, and at the same time, gets a lot of unfair treatment that ranges from cryto-racist winking to blatant prejudice. The Wright controversy is certainly an illustration of that -- the MSM, never mind Fox, has never come anywhere near the coverage given Wright in treating all of the intolerance and incendiary remarks coming from white religious figures who play at politics.

Ultimately, I'd say it's a wash, regarding Clinton and Obama and their treatment at the hands of the MSM. The right-wing noise machine is probably equally unfair to both, too. The liberal media is split in lots of ways, but I could accept a claim that Obama, here, gets more favorable coverage overall. However, at this point, it's just that he's the preferred candidate and most of Clinton's antics lately are seen as destructive to the Democrats' chances overall.

Bottom line is: nobody gets the media love like St. John. I can only hope this diavlog is the beginning of a sorely needed pushback. Maybe Ana Marie, for example, will have had a seed planted in her mind by Glenn. Doubt it, but maybe.

bjkeefe 04-02-2008 07:21 PM

Re: Thanks, Ana!
 
PaulL:

As Twin noted to GC: Glenn has only been on BH.tv once before today, so I'd say you're a little limited in your statistical universe there. As I recall his diavlog with Ben Smith, it was an interruption fest which bored me to tears. This suggests Glenn was not in a position to bully, and it certainly demonstrates that he was willing to talk to someone with whom he did not agree about everything.

Don't know what to say about your impression of Eric Alterman, except that I miss him. I don't agree that he was always matched with people with whom he agrees or could bully. Seems to me he's had some good vigorous debates and some polite exchanges, but I don't recall any echo-chamber events. I suppose if you are conservative enough, you would find two lefty people indistinguishable if they agreed on some core principles and were disputing the details.

I will grant that Eric sometimes presents as abrasive, and Glenn comes off as a little humorless and intense, but "dickweeds" seems uncalled for, as does cowardly refusal to just type the word you chose to say.

Can't say anything about Glenn's appearance on HH's show. There isn't a gun in the world big enough to be pointed at my head that would make me listen to that idiot.

Andrya6 04-02-2008 07:38 PM

MSM= Media Supporting McCain?
 
As an aerospace engineer I have some input into what suppliers my employer will buy parts from. My employer has strict restrictions on what hospitality I can accept from suppliers (no gourmet food, just deli stuff or pizza, and it must be consumed in the supplier's workplace during a working lunch). Going to a weekend barbeque would not be OK. Such rules are standard, and there's a good reason for them- accepting hospitality does bias the purchasing decision, even if only unconsiously.

Vendors do try to give us stuff, and we have to decline- and they wouldn't do it unless they thought it was effective. Likewise, I suspect McCain is inviting the press hoping to get a good press.

I think Cox is unrealistic about the effect of favors and socializing on human decision making.

otto 04-02-2008 08:26 PM

So-so
 
This was not a success. GG is something of a blunderbuss, wanting his Big Claims about McCain acknowledged, and AMC was evasive, snippy, and refused to engage in any give-and-take. Both pretty unbearable conversationalists.

Wonderment 04-02-2008 10:09 PM

Re: MSM = Media Supporting McCain?
 
Quote:

Bottom line is: nobody gets the media love like St. John. I can only hope this diavlog is the beginning of a sorely needed pushback. Maybe Ana Marie, for example, will have had a seed planted in her mind by Glenn. Doubt it, but maybe.
As someone who has a visceral negative response to McCain, I find the notion of the media being "enamored of" him astonishing. It's disturbing enough that half the public is enamored of him independently of the media. We hopelessly fall head over heels in love with all flag-waving warlords, and obviously have not learned our lesson from Bush-Cheney. People find "Ba-ba-bomb Iran" charming and the 100-years war "pragmatic." It's sickening.

I'm also VERY suspect of the claim by Ana Marie that a journalist can be friends with a public figure and still report on him/her objectively. I lived in a country for 12 years where journalists were overly friendly with public figures, and it was an unmitigated and repulsive disaster. Glenn wins this argument hands down, whether it's about McCain or any other pol.


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