As Heather already noted, Tucker Carlson's BIG Exclusive Obama Video was just a rerun of a 2007 speech. A phony gotcha video moment. It's kinda like loudly urging everyone tune into CBS next Friday to see a rerun of the "Who KIlled JR?" episode. The ratings would be sub-zero, because America already knows who shot JR and whether he survived. It orginally aired on November 21, 1980, and was the highest viewed TV program of all time with a Nielsen rating of 53.3 and a 76% share. The ratings for a 2012 rerun would be sub-zero.
i think the latest drudge "bombshell video" encapsulates the weakness of the right's"vetting" theory. the idea of the vetting is that the media (and/or john mccain) did not do its job in vetting candidate obama during the 2008 election. specifically, it didn't do enough to inform the public about his alleged radical connections with people like jeremiah wright. the theory being that had that vetting been done, obama never would have become president.
the problem with the theory is that it completely overlooks the fact that that kind of vetting was done. the media obsessed about jeremiah wright for several weeks during that election campaign. that's why i can bring him up right now without bothering to explain who he is. (i certainly had never heard of him before the "goddamn america clip" was played ad infinitum, and i lived on the south side of chicago around the time that it was recorded). there was also plenty of talk about bill ayers, and some about rashid khalidi. to the extent the right wanted a discussion about obama's alleged radical connections, they got it in 2007 and 2008.
Andrew Breitbart isn't the only right-winger out there creating false narratives about his targets through selective editing -- indeed, this is a common practice at Fox News, too. But the real champion of selective editing -- in quite a different fashion -- is Matt Drudge.
Instead of chopping up video, Drudge selectively edits tidbits of information from around the country to create narratives on his widely read Drudge Report website -- narratives that, in fact, are often right-wing lies pandering to right-wing audiences.
Recently, the narrative at Drudge has been this: Criminal young black men, freed to wanton abandon by the Black Panther-coddling Obama administration, are embarking on a retributive crime wave against white people.
Since Obama actually took office, though, Drudge has seriously stepped up his "scary black people" coverage. There was, in September of 2009, the story he heavily publicized of a kid on a bus in Illinois getting beaten up. A kid on a bus in Illinois getting beaten up is not really national news -- until Drudge makes it so. The fact that the beater was black and the victim white is why Drudge made it national news. Rush Limbaugh made the subtext explicit: "In Obama's America, the white kids now get beat up with the black kids cheering."
This is the narrative that Drudge is trying to create, especially on slow news weekends when there's nothing real to aggregate and post: The blacks are rising up and attacking the whites. If that sounds a bit crazy, in a Charles Manson way, then you're obviously not paying attention. Black people are angry and they're taking over! When Barack Obama was campaigning to win Chicago the Olympic games, Matt Drudge led with a terrifying photo of (black) gang violence and the breathless, all-caps headline, "OLYMPIC SPIRIT."
The violent death of a young man is definitely news ... in Chicago, where it happened. It had very little to do with whether Chicago is a suitable venue for the Olympics. Violent murders happen in big cities and small towns across the nation every day. But only some of them can be used to stoke paranoia about emboldened, angry black people rising up.
John at Gawker observes that this past weekend, there were 10 Drudge headlines supporting this narrative:
Then be sure to check in with the Drudge Report, which has conveniently rounded up a slew of run-of-the-mill summer crime stories that happen to involve black people and suggestively weaved them into a nationwide race riot.
The race-baiting is a bit more transparent—"urban," "rib fest"—than we've come to expect from Drudge, who is usually more elegant in his efforts to stoke white rage. All of Drudge's readers in the media business, the cable news producers and Politico reporters who regard him as "America's assignment editor," know exactly what his intent is with those headlines. But instead of being dismissed as a racist weather-obsessed recluse he continues to be regarded as a power player in right-wing politics.
Unsurprisingly, some of the wingnutosphere's duller tools in the shed promptly leapt to Drudge's defense by trotting out the classic right-wing stereotypes about blacks and crime -- thereby clinching the case that what Drudge was doing was stirring up these resentments. F'r instance, Confederate Yankee:
Pareene is a far left liberal that would like to embrace the childish fiction that all races and cultures are essentially the same. It's a wonderful view to have when you're ten.
While individuals within these cultures can be anyone and achieve anything, it is a statistical fact that African-Americans are disproportionately responsible for crimes in this nation compared to any other ethnic group. They are also more likely to commit some of the more sensational crimes, such as the near riots and wildings that are the prime headline fodder that are Drudge's bread and butter.
If Pareene really wanted to make an impact, he'd spend his time and resources trying to find the reason for the statistical discrepancy that shows African-Americans are more prone to be criminals and victims of violent crime.
Of course, he already knows the reason. It started with LBJ's "Great Society," and continued with the rise of Planned Parenthood and the destruction of the African-American family unit due to "progressive" social reforms.
Oy. The stooooooopid, it burns. And then these same conservatives look hurt and amazed when people point out that their attitudes are deeply racist.
Right-wingers like Bob Owens never seem to understand that the correlation of crime with race is not a causal relationship -- rather, the causal relationship is between poverty and crime. And black people are more likely to be impoverished in America than other races for a broad variety of reasons, many of them historical in nature, but including a number of ongoing factors: demographic segregation, job discrimination, and impoverishment of urban schools.
Drudge's choice of what stories to highlight is about creating a narrative, and the insinuation is now that we have a black President, all hell is breaking loose. One of the weirdest, most long-standing conservative myths is that black people are aching to "rise up" and take the nation by force. The argument is then that they have to, more in sorrow than in glee, argue against equal rights for black people. They'd want to share, but you know, violence! The notion that black America is revenge-minded is something that is surprisingly powerful for wingnuts. That's why there's non-stop chatter on right wing radio about slavery reparations, even though the subject has no traction in real world discourse, and even if it did, said reparations would look much different than right wingers imagine it would like. (They're picturing jack-booted thugs stealing your grandmother's pearls and giving it to some family you don't know to pawn, but it would more likely be a check that resembles a Social Security check or a tax refund.) And that's why Andrew Breitbart thinks that some court settlement to black farmers who were systemically discriminated against for decades is the biggest problem our nation faces.
Indeed, Drudge's editorial choices tell us far more about him -- and his many fans -- than anything else.
They just don't get it. There's nothing like a bunch of Beltway gatekeepers navel-gazing and completely missing the larger message of the rise of the new media.
Matthews looks at the influence the "new media" has had on politics and where that begins and ends for the Beltway bubbleheads: Drudge. But it's telling how they characterize it: suddenly, DC was turned upside down by the publication on a blog known for sensationalist headlines the rumor that Pres. Clinton was having an affair with a staffer. A rumor that none of the traditional media was ready to touch, because it had not been vetted.
And that's the influence of new media--no filters, no responsibility. Listen as Dan Rather trepidaciously brings up the lynch mob mentality that can be fostered by the new media, where they en masse call out reporters or producers, sending letters to the editors and changing the narrative of a story, irrespective of the truth. And neither Tweety nor Politico's John Harris (who will never be honest about his hard-on for links on Drudge) hear the warning in Rather's morality play.
And so it goes. Even if Katty Kay gushes about the great democratizing effect of the internet tearing down the gatekeepers, the corporate media ignores the true meaning of the rise of the new media: the traditional media stopped doing their job--they stopped vetting stories in the rush to scoop their competition. They stopped practicing journalism. Period. Full stop. And I say this, recognizing my own small cog in the new media machinery. The rise of the new media caused the traditional, corporate media to act like bloggers.
I'm not a journalist, and have never laid claim to being one. I strive to get things accurate, and I try to keep myself intellectually honest about how I cover the stories I do here. But I have never hidden that I come to the posts I do with a bias and an opinion. It's there and you can disagree with me, but what I'm giving you is my slant on stories.
And that's what journalism has sadly morphed into since those days of salacious Drudge headlines about Monica Lewinsky. But they're dishonest enough to deny what I've admitted: they're doing nothing but giving you a slanted story. And half the time, they're simply aping the slant of the source from which they got the story: be it Drudge, or Malkin, or Erickson. I wish I could tell you it's from Amato or Kos or Greenwald, but you and I know it's not. Because Drudge still rules their world and we're still just the lefties on the side, not creating the narratives.
You know, I don't want to jump to conclusions here, because that would make me too much like Matt Drudge. But if the car bomber was indeed a white guy in his 40s who didn't know the difference between ammonium nitrate and plain old fertilizer, I'm thinking it's gotta be a Beck Patriot who was trying to water the tree of liberty with... the blood of random Times Square tourists.
Law enforcement officials offered a more detailed description of the makeup of the failed car bomb found in Times Square on Saturday night, and said they were reviewing surveillance footage that showed a white man who appeared to be in his 40s walking away from the area as he looked over his shoulder and removed a layer of clothing.
Raymond W. Kelly, the police commissioner, said the materials found in the Nissan Pathfinder — gasoline, propane, firecrackers and simple alarm clocks — also included eight bags of a granular substance, later determined to be nonexplosive grade of fertilizer, inside a 55-inch-tall metal gun locker.
The bomb, Mr. Kelly said, “would have caused casualties, a significant fireball.” He added, “I don’t think we can label it at this time crude or not.”
Let's see: wrong kind of fertilizer. Shut-off propane tanks. Someone who's not all that bright, or good with details? Someone who apparently modeled his bomb on those of infamous bombmaker Wile E. Coyote?
Ah, maybe I'm wrong. Maybe it's a Limbaugh listener.
To me, it sounds like a liberal charade to take the heat off Barack and put it on the tea partiers.
Brilliant thinks someone's being framed:
They are going to hang this failed bomb on some fat, white guy who was allegedly seen at a Tea Party rally. The construction of the device was so botched it seems almost like a set up and some sad nutter was talked into driving it to Times Square. I know, you think I wear a tin foil hat to bed, but I really don’t trust our present government.
Yes, the rest of the freepers are insisting the perpetrator must be a white man who's a convert to Islam.
I swear to God, I do not Make. This. Stuff. Up. I don't have to.
Via Raw Story, something that proves more than ever that wingnuts are nothing but a bunch of WATBs. Now one is complaining that two years ago, Oscar the Grouch made a crack about "Pox News":
Forget Tinky-Winky, or whatever his name was. Meet Oscar the Grouch.
A conservative blogger at Andrew Breitbart's "Big Hollywood" website -- the onetime right-hand man for conservative maven Matt Drudge -- is now targeting Sesame Street for its "unfair" portrayal of Fox News as "trashy news show."
Evidently, Oscar the Grouch's "GNN" is not trashy enough. (Oscar, the furry green puppet, if you remember, lives in a trash can.)
During a Sesame Street segment, Oscar finds himself interviewing a puppet celebrity. A crabby viewer calls in to rebuke him after one of his subjects begins kissing him.
“I am changing the channel," the viewer crows. "From now on I am watching ‘Pox’ News. Now there is a trashy news show.” Story continues below...
Breitbart's "Stage Right" blogger will have none of it -- even though the episode was originally broadcast two years ago and only recently re-aired.
"If Mom and Dad watch cable news, it’s better than 50/50 they watch 'POX News,'" the blogger pens. "So what gives? PBS — a network partially funded with my tax dollars — has the right to tell my kids that their parents watch “trashy” news?
"The message is clear," the blogger continues. "I can’t even sit my kids in front of 'Sesame Street' without having to worry about the Left attempting to undermine my authority. And don’t tell me, 'If you don’t like it change the channel.' There are no channels left! It’s everywhere. Just last week I had Obama’s service and volunteerism promoted on every single major network, including Disney and Nickelodeon."
Yeah, no channels left, and certainly no conservatives. No "Morning Joe," no Lou Dobbs, Pat Buchanan, David Frum... oh, never mind. What's the use?
Let there be no doubt that Matt Drudge is the world's biggest douchebag. The gigantic screamer headline above leads us to this ridiculousness, written by Drudge himself:
On the night of June 24, the media and government become one, when ABC turns its programming over to President Obama and White House officials to push government run health care -- a move that has ignited an ethical firestorm!
Ethical firestorm? How is broadcasting from the White House an ethical firestorm? Even someone as thick as Drudge should know that every major press agency has a reporter INSIDE the White House every day reporting the, you know, news. Many of them -- GASP! Siren Light Animated GIF!!!! -- report live from inside the West Wing press room or on the front lawn.
Bob Cesca caught this interesting top item at Drudge last night:
This headline of a mad man doesn't link to anything, it just sits there like something rapped out on the keyboard out of frustration. It seems like Drudge is implying that everyone is wrong but him. Perhaps he is upset that the media didn't take his lead and report on the unreliable poll he posted a couple of weeks ago showing Obama with only a two point lead. Maybe he is just trying to steer away attention from the story turned hoax that he pushed so hard last week of Ashley Todd.
No matter what the reasoning for this odd headline, it is obvious Drudge has had a rough time lately pushing his misleading and just plain wrong stories. As matter of fact times have been so rough for Drudge that it looks like he just want to end 2008 now:
Notice the title of his page? Poor Matt Drudge has now transported himself to 2009. I really doubt 2009 is going to be much better for him.
The race is unrecognizable in terms of where the players are situated now and where they were five weeks ago. (Between September 15 and October 19, there was a 12-point swing in the Gallup daily tracking poll.) Now ask yourself: What role has the Drudge Report played in that burst of campaign movement? The answer, of course, is zero. Zilch. Nada. Nothing. His trademark flashing red lights have gone missing.
The dynamics of the campaign have irrevocably changed, and the mighty Drudge Report, the news site Beltway journalists trip over themselves to genuflect in front of, has been a complete bystander in the closing weeks of the 2008 campaign. [..]
The reason is simple. Because of the unprecedented economic turmoil, we're now in serious times. (Fifty thousand home foreclosures this year, in the state of New Jersey alone, is serious business.) And the Drudge Report doesn't do serious. The American public's attention has shifted from the campaign to the economy, and that's why the Drudge Report remains largely irrelevant to that unfolding story.[..]
As long as those patterns hold, Drudge finds himself in no-man's-land with no levers of power to pull.
Pat Buchanan gets laughed off the Hardball stage by Tweety and Bob Shrum for saying that Palin won the debate because she topped Biden on the Drudge and AOL polls. Forget CBS and CNN, you know, the real pollsters. If non-scientific polls on sites primarily frequented by right-wing nutjobs say Palin won, then dammit, she won.