How Awful Was The Media This Election?
This time around, we weren't subject to the full frontal starry eyed messianic gush of four years ago, but the political media found other ways to beclown itself again this cycle.
Two election day reads as you wile away the hours until the first results.
By tomorrow night we’ll likely know the name of the next president. But we already know the loser in this election cycle: political reporters. They’ve disgraced themselves. Conservatives have long complained about liberal bias in the media, and with some justification. But it has finally reached the tipping point. Not in our lifetimes have so many in the press dropped the pretense of objectivity in order to help a political candidate. The media are rooting for Barack Obama. They’re not hiding it.
Consider Benghazi. An American consulate is destroyed and a US ambassador murdered at a time when the president is boasting at every campaign stop that he has crushed al-Qaida. In an effort not to disrupt this narrative, the White House and the Obama campaign spend weeks claiming the incident was merely a protest over a video, rather than a real terror attack. Then intelligence surfaces showing just the opposite: The killers in Benghazi were no street mob, and Obama knew as much from the beginning.
Imagine if George W. Bush, or even Bill Clinton, had tried something like this during a re-election campaign. The howls from journalists would have been deafening, and unceasing. Instead, Obama has enjoyed every benefit of every doubt from the press every step of the way. Candy Crowley even broke character in the middle of a presidential debate to defend him. From their retirement, former presidents must be looking on in envious bewilderment.
The major media... turned Mitt Romney into a caricature straight off a Monopoly card. They hollered “Bain” like it was a scene from “Batman,” dug into long-forgotten high school pranks and tried to depict him as radical right-wing, a well as bash him for his faith. A casual comment about the “47 percent” became “seismic” or a “disaster.” Things like the massive decline in the job participation rate and Obama’s $16-trillion nation debt were afterthoughts to news coverage.
The 2012 presidential election wasn’t like the awfully spun race of 2008. It was worse. The media’s longstanding war against conservative women which dominated the race four years ago, turned into a media-created “war on women” that somehow involved the GOP. Rush Limbaugh’s calling the obscure, money-hungry Sandra Fluke a “slut” became major national news. The vice president saying the GOP wanted to put “y’all back in chains” garnered little notice even though nutty Biden is one heartbeat from the Oval Office.
Perhaps journalists were simply projecting as a result of their own attacks against Palin, Bachmann and O’Donnell.
While it wasn’t a war on women, it sure was a war on truth and truth lost most days. The top issue to voters was the economy, but you’d never know it from the news coverage. Even the GOP primary, moderators pushed social issues to give Team Obama ample distractions from the 23 million under and unemployed.
When economic news was covered, it looked nothing like it had during the Bush administration. This time journalists found or created a silver lining inside every dark cloud. High gas prices weren’t bad, they were “improving.” And lousy economic growth was seldom called a major Obama failure.
For journalists, this election represented the reign of the fact checkers as the media used a new device to try and whine about Republicans. Yet the fact checking, as Crowley showed, was wildly one-sided and more to celebrate Dem talking points than anything. In one example, CNN journalist/Obama press secretary Soledad O’Brien was caught on air reading the Democratic blog Talking Points Memo to fend off a Romney spokeswoman...