. . . Friday April 1, 2005

Spread Liberally

Eric Boehlert has some interesting takes on the Schiavo story.

It was fitting that reporters were in danger of outnumbering pro-life supporters outside Terri Schiavo’s hospice in Pinellas Park, Fla., on Thursday morning. When one man began to play the trumpet moments after Schiavo’s death was announced at 9:50 a.m., a gaggle of cameramen quickly surrounded him, two or three deep.

Has there ever been a set of protesters so small, so out of proportion, so outnumbered by the press, for a story that had supposedly set off a “furious debate” nationwide? That’s how Newsweek.com described the Schiavo story this week. Although it’s not clear how a country can have a “furious debate” when two-thirds of its citizens agree on the issue or, in the case of some Schiavo poll questions (i.e., Were Congress and President Bush wrong to intervene?), four out of five Americans agree.

But the “furious debate” angle has been a crucial selling point in the Schiavo story in part because editors and producers could never justify the extraordinary amount of time and resources they set aside for the story if reporters made plain in covering it every day that the issue was being driven by a very small minority who were out of step with the mainstream.

It’s really worth paying attention to the way this story has been covered and discussed (even if you can’t take the story itself anymore — a clear sign of sanity).

Last night on MSNBC, Joe Scarborough and his visiting pundits were doing what they always do; Attacking the so-called liberal press (the same liberal press that hasn’t been able to win an election or a television ratings war in half a decade).

Even when the press is playing along with the nuts, the nuts refuse to pull the feeding tube that fuels their anti-media messaging war.

In this case, Scarborough was complaining that the media wasn’t giving enough of the medical details and that the American public just didn’t have enough facts to form a sensible view.

Of course, in this case, pretty much everyone immediately saw the sensible view. Everyone except a handful of extremists and the rabid media that broadcast their every placard message across the airwaves – and right over little stories like the WMD report and a tragic earthquake.

There is no way that the media could’ve been more supportive of the idiots in and out of government who rode a wave of hypocrisy and misguided fervor into our living rooms for a couple of weeks.

But mere facts will not deter the messengers. And the message has worked, so it will not change.

The media is bad. It really goes beyond that.

Thought is bad.

Journalists are bad.
Judges are bad.
Doctors are bad.
Science is bad.
Logic is bad.

So is this trend.

You don’t need to look backwards to see the trend at work. Stay tuned over the next few days and weeks as the liberal and anti-religious press reports live, by the thousands, nonstop, from the Vatican.

Concentration is important!