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In Defense of the New York Times (and Independent Journalism)

Boy, you know the McCain campaign is having a bad week when it tries, yet again, to intimidate the press and tells people not to pay attention to newspapers.

Steve Schmidt, the McCain campaign’s chief operating officer, held a conference call yesterday to run down the press for calling his campaign out for lies and half-truths. He particularly singled out The Times, which yesterday reported that McCain campaign manager Rick Davis had received some $2 million for serving as “president of an advocacy group set up by the mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to defend them against stricter regulations.” This was embarrassing, especially because McCain has made a big deal of any ties Barack Obama has had to Fannie and Freddie folks.

“Whatever the New York Times once was, it is not today by any standard a journalistic organization,” Schmidt said. “It is a pro-Obama organization that every day attacks Sen. McCain, attacks Gov. Palin, and excuses Sen. Obama.” (See also Howie Kurtz’s story in The Post.)

Give me a break.

First, what really hurt the McCain folks about The Times story was that it was true.

Second, a lot of what Schmidt said on his conference call with reporters was not true. Ben Smith fact checked Schmidt’s call for Politico and concluded that it was “so rife with simple, often inexplicable misstatements of fact that it may have had the opposite effect: to deepen the perception, dangerous to McCain, that he and his aides have little regard for factual accuracy.”

Third, the Obama campaign provided a helpful list of 40 stories “the NY Times has written over the course of the campaign about Barack Obama, his life, his religion, his childhood, his politics, his time in the state senate, his time in the U.S. Senate, his family, his religion, his friends, his fundraising and all other manner of associations.”

The bottom line: The McCain campaign just doesn’t want anyone to call them out on anything. It hopes to intimidate reporters and discredit those who try to give an honest account of the campaign. As Joe Klein noted on his blog, Schmidt’s theory must be that “if he complains enough about press bias, we mainstream sorts will cower, cringe and try to seek false equivalences between the two campaigns.” Here’s hoping that there is great resistance to cowering and cringing.

By E.J. Dionne  | September 23, 2008; 8:27 AM ET
Categories:  Dionne  | Tags:  E.J. Dionne  
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Next: Palin on Thin Ice


and this from the same Steve Schmidt with his former close ties to the Bush election campaigns. The more things CHANGE, the more they stay the SAME.

Posted by: orbiter dictum | September 23, 2008 8:55 AM | Report abuse

Steve Schmidt is a stupid thug. Of course, those intimidation techniques do work on the press (witness the last 8 years), but only when wielded from a position of power. McCain is only running for power--he hasn't got it yet.

Posted by: Helena Montana | September 23, 2008 8:59 AM | Report abuse

Anyone see the Bloomberg piece that McCain's "trasition" chief (has he gotten elected already?) represented Freddie Mac for the last 8 years? Boy oh boy!

Posted by: Dewey | September 23, 2008 9:12 AM | Report abuse

There has to be a way to get normal, intelligent honest people to serve in governmant. There is a dearth of honesty on both sides. Republicans, with their "Greed is Good" BS mantra from the 80's will tell you that black is white if there are a few dollars in it. Theygo into government to get rich. Democrats, usually idealistic liberals, realize from day one of taking office that they have to always have one hand out for cash becauseit is always about the next election (erection?). I think we've matured as a nation to the point that we do not really need a wealthy white man as our leader. Find the best and the brightest. No more Brownies. No more bailouts. No more lies.

Posted by: MossyD | September 23, 2008 9:14 AM | Report abuse

Now the press knows how Senator McCain must have felt after the lies spread about him in 2000's South Carolina Primary by the Bushies. Of course, then the purpose of the Bushies was to discredit McCain. Today the purpose of the Bushies is far more sinister... to cause the press to shrink from its obligation.. reporting the facts.

This is not more of the same... it is worse.

Posted by: obh | September 23, 2008 9:16 AM | Report abuse

I have tried to post my moderate political opinion on the NYTimes blog many times and unless it's pro-Obama it doesn't get published.

Posted by: Voice2 | September 23, 2008 9:17 AM | Report abuse

At some point in the process of becoming a compulsive liar, your wheels leave the runway of reality and you become airborne. At that point anything goes because you can't tell the difference between an actual fact and your own endless fictions. Steve Schmidt and the rest of McCain campaign "braintrust" are cases right out Abnormal Psychology 101. Hope they can get professional help before it is too late...

Posted by: Stefan | September 23, 2008 9:21 AM | Report abuse

Let's hear the true facts on:
* McCains TRUE role in THE KEATING FIVE (remember the S&L fiasco or have we already forgotten?)
* I'd like to see a FINANCIAL SIDE-BY-SIDE COMPARISON of their income/assets. Including all four candidates and their spouses.
* I'd like to see a side-by-side comparison of their legal records
* I'd like to see a side-by-side of their educational background, just hard facts, without editorial or spin. While we're at it, do the same for the spouses.
* Troopergate and the need for TRANSPARENCY.
* While we're at it, can someone explain to me the importance of being able to shoot/dress a moose to the job of a national leader? Are we being threatened with invasion by Bullwinkle and his cronies?
* Why did McCain end up a POW? Aside from having been a POW, what distinguished his military career? (Yes, he was a POW, my hat's off to him and all who have gone through such an ordeal, but what else defined his military career).
* What did McCain do after returning from Vietnam? For how long did he stay in the military? Why did he run for office instead of staying in the military? I'd like to know, in concrete terms, if he ran for office for the money, power, or because he truly wanted to serve his country.

Posted by: KickTheThugsOut | September 23, 2008 9:31 AM | Report abuse

I hate to disagree, but since not being involved in your elections, but with satellite coverage of all your media and ease of internet searches, complaints about the press are fully warranted. Your mainstream media by and large have fully been in the tank for Obama since the beginning and any uninterested party can see that as plainly as the nose on your face. His history making aspect of being the first African American has led your coverage from the start and experience and qualifications have been shortchanged because any attempt at scrutiny was labelled as the person being a bigot. The race card was played unfairly and the media went right along with it. Now McCain and Palin have nothing but poor press no matter what and the scrutiny of both fairly is laughable. Obama mistakes are excused away while McCain's ridiculed. The first 4 days of seemingly unendless trashing of Governor Palin was shameful. Unfortunately so many Americans are so polarized that objectivity has all but disappeared and no matter what is said, if it is not favorable, then people are called on it. I presume the press finds it more fun to ridicule on age than have been fair when discussing race, and for some reason want to be part of the history making aspect less they be left out. The media deserve every bit of criticism that gets hurled at them. They have become part of the strategy to get someone elected rather than report on those who should be charged with that task.

Posted by: foreigner | September 23, 2008 9:33 AM | Report abuse

On the view, and yesterday, McCain was asked on camera about his lying and this dishonest ads, and he denied he was lying; he said all his ads were factual.

He's too old to know the difference, he's too senile, he lives in a bubble where a Top Gun personna has gotten him a pass whenever he needed it... whatever it is, he refuses to address the lying.

We've had it with republicans who lie to the American people. I would have thought he would have known that from the git go..

Cindy McCain is NOT an only child. Her cookies recipes were stolen from others without credit, she did NOT meet Mother Theresa, she DID steal prescription drugs from her Foundation to feed her addiction; McCain WAS reprimended for his part of the Keating Five, McCain HAS supported every deregulation bill ever proposed by republican lobbiests, Palin IS chattel, cosseted, isolated, controlled, not allowed to speak for herself, a bimbo for arm candy like philandering old men have had since forever.

Posted by: dutchess2 | September 23, 2008 9:36 AM | Report abuse

"Third, the Obama campaign provided a helpful list of 40 stories “the NY Times has written over the course of the campaign about Barack Obama, his life, his religion, his childhood, his politics, his time in the state senate, his time in the U.S. Senate, his family, his religion, his friends, his fundraising and all other manner of associations.”"

Puff-pieces all! Allow me to insert the substance of those articles parenthetically:

Third, the Obama campaign provided a helpful list of 40 stories “the NY Times has written over the course of the campaign about Barack Obama, his life [brilliant kid with a diverse background goes to fancy college and law school because he's so goshdarn smart], his religion [he's a 'committed Christian'], his childhood [he's a model for America's diversity!], his politics [he's not that liberal!], his time in the state senate [he was a bipartisan whiz-kid!], his time in the U.S. Senate [he's a bipartisan whiz-kid!], his family [they're smart and beautiful!], his religion [didn't we already say that? well, let's say it again: he's a 'committed Christian'!], his friends {they're super-smart and think he's amazing], his fundraising [he's a fundraising juggernaut and he doesn't take special-interest money!] and all other manner of associations [WE LOVE OBAMA!!!].”

Obama's coverage in the Times has been laughably hagiographic.

Posted by: AK | September 23, 2008 9:41 AM | Report abuse

Well, you can hardly blame them for trying to intimidate the press. The Rove/Bush/Cheney machine has proved it works all too well, and has been successfully doing it for the past nine years. I was pretty ticked off at the press for its timidity in 2000, but was furious about it in 2004. Its reticence in calling the administration on its lies and criminality for four years certainly helped Bush get reelected, and here we are. Let me amend that. The press didn't report in a manner that Mr. & Mrs. Sixpack could understand. The media reporting was simply too far over their heads. We're beginning to see a tiny bit of straightforward reporting now, but the press needs to say things like, "so-and-so said such-and-such and that is a lie because of this-and-that." This should be in basic news stories, not just commentaries and editorials. It does need to be couched in "rocks are hard, water is wet" terms for the average voter to comprehend. Making them work to draw their own conclusions is useless; they're too intellectually lazy and incurious.

Posted by: FairfaxVa | September 23, 2008 9:56 AM | Report abuse

It couldnt be the McCain group is simply wondering where are the fannie mae 1A headlines: screaming that Obama was bought and paid for Fannie and Freddie.
This has never more important when the first candidate to eschew public financing is running for office.
The NYT "swiftboats" Republicans daily as a way of life, and call it journalism which is technically true, yet it is what causes the right to complain vigorously about the double standard.
Of course, blindly liberal EJ and Kleins see it thru their leftie tinted lens. Big shock there.

Posted by: MN man | September 23, 2008 10:08 AM | Report abuse

You do not have to be a Quantum Physicist to grasp what is going on here. The most striking evidence that John McCain is nothing more than a microwave reheat of George W. Bush is how he reacts to the press, particularly the Nwe York Times.

Schmidt amd Davis are George W. Bush-Karl Rove alumnis. What both Schmidt and Davis recognized immediately is that like Bush, McCain's "boiling temperament" (as George Will described it in a scalding op-ed this morning) could be harnessed in the same sort of media strategy that Bush devised during his administration--killing the messenger who bears bad tidings.

More than any policy or worldview agendas they may share, Bush and McCain are uniquely similar in their juvenile attitude toward anyone who dares challenge those policies or worldviews. They are both Manichaen. And neither has the temperament to react to a reality that does not conform to their ideological certitudes.

Posted by: Jaxas | September 23, 2008 10:11 AM | Report abuse

Sadly, a "biased media" has come to mean the reporting of things that one doesn't agree with. Limbaugh, O'Reilly, and Hannity have been re-echoing the phrase "liberal media" for so long, and so loudly, that their devoted followers have just assumed it to be true.

The discouraging thing is that it works so well. Every time a disagreeable report comes out, it's another example of the "liberal media", or the "mainstream media" or the "drive-by media." I guess it's just easier to write it off as biased reporting than to confront the information presented in the article. And it sure is easier, as the McCain campaign showed yesterday, to blast unfair coverage rather than explaining awkward and potentially damaging circumstances.

Posted by: todd | September 23, 2008 10:13 AM | Report abuse

AK is right and "laughably hagiographic" is the perfect description of what has been passing for journalism. (and not just in the NYT) Whether it is fear of being un-PC, lack of journalistic ethics or smarts, there has been a complete lack of realistic and hard bitten journalism from the majors on Obama.

There has been only one realistic examination of Obama's work history in Chicago. From the lowly Houston Press. Originally entitled "Barack Obama Screamed at Me". Now changed to Barack Obama and Me. This didn't appear until February 08.

There was no examination of Obama's religious history with Wright and his choice of black liberation theology. His separatist leanings in his book. Until they were exposed in March '08 the majors were either too afraid, too biased, or lazy to examine and question Obama's past.

The discrepancies in Obama's self-reverential writings have largely been left unexamined and unquestioned. His voting history has been largely unexamined and unquestioned. His missing records unexamined and unquestioned. His own negative campaign tactics unexamined and unquestioned.

There may be 40+ articles, but not one of them meets the journalistic standard of being revelatory, adversarial or honest.

Posted by: doublestandard | September 23, 2008 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Is the Times a fair and unbiased chronicle of the events? Mostly so. They have opinions and are not right all the time. But who is?

Posted by: Gary E. Masters | September 23, 2008 10:32 AM | Report abuse

If you want to see how it works and why they do it, just look in today's newspaper at Howard Kurtz brief article on this topic. Kurtz is a bona fide newsman, good reporter, credible, and interesting to read. But look at the article. Essentially, it is a delivery device for Schmidt's message--as close to simply publishing a McCain news release as you can get.
So while you and others who think like you (including me) are all in a lather about the absurdity of the charge, the accuracy of the NYT's reporting, and all the rest--Schmidt is off having a good laugh at us, if indeed he thinks about it at all. These guys play the respectable media like an Amati fiddle. Which message do you think readers left Kurtz's article with--the slam against the Times or Bill Keller's predictable and anodyne "rebuttal"? Isn't there some inoculation effect against reporting on the next Palin gaffe or McCain detonation? "Oh, what do you expect from the Washington Post or New York Times?" And the irony is they get excellent journalists to do it to themselves--a la Kurtz. If it weren't so gruesome, it would be fascinating--and funny.

Posted by: FAC | September 23, 2008 10:37 AM | Report abuse

Over and over, McCain supporters and also "foreigner" offer nothing but invective. No facts. No proof. The NYTimes has a solid record of fact-checking, as do many media watchers like was available in the last two elections as well. Over and over, Republican strategy is to muddle the facts, mislead the public, attack the strenths of the other candidates without regard to fact. They creating our new word for this: swiftboating. At last, truth gets to show its face to the public!
I'd begun to despair. And by the way, conservative haters of media need to finally realize that it's truth that they hate, not the bearers of truth.

Posted by: cturtle1 | September 23, 2008 10:45 AM | Report abuse

E.J., my friend:

The news media as a whole made it vulnerable to these types of charges over the past 8 months. The reporting throughout the primary season and then during the Palin introduction was openly biased in favor of Obama. The McCain campaign is not trying to intimidate the press. They are doing a good job of campaigning by means of using this fact to their advantage in an effort to influence undecided voters.

Posted by: Provincial | September 23, 2008 10:47 AM | Report abuse

E.J. Dionne is not a journalist, not even a pundit. E.J. Dionne is just another Obamabot, whose only mission in life consists on helping "The One" get elected.

Posted by: Scooby | September 23, 2008 10:49 AM | Report abuse

Steve Schmidt and Karl Rove are not honorable, respectful men. They have enticed Palin/McCain to join them. I say phooey to all the talking heads like Mark Halperin, Chris Matthews, Mike Barnacle, Andrea Mitchell, etc. who always tout the idea that negative ads work. If these heads started promoting the idea that negative ads do not have to work, we might see a whole new mind-set, like Barack Obama wants to create, enter the world of politics.

Posted by: J.D. | September 23, 2008 10:56 AM | Report abuse

You must think everyone is ignorant, I have voted democrat for the last 20 years and this year I will not vote, this article as well as numerous others are trying to influence the election, are nation is doomed. The press is beyond arrogant and out of control, fools!

Posted by: Billy | September 23, 2008 10:56 AM | Report abuse

THE OBAMA CAMPAIGN AND THE LIBERAL MEDIA IS IN DISARRAY, CONFUSED AND FOAMING AT THE MOUTH after the Maverick, John McCain chose Sarah Palin, a woman reformer for VP. Their response has been a vicious attack on Sarah ranging from insults to smearing and the sexist tactics that brought Hillary's campaign crashing down.

OBAMA FRACTURED AND DIVIDED THE DEMOCRATIC PARTY WHEN HE REJECTED THE CHOICE OF 18 MILLION DEMOCRATS and instead of choosing Hillary Clinton for VP, he chose an old Washington politician Joe Biden, and by this grave mistake in choice, negated the flag of "change" Obama had been waiving and replaced it with the flag of "more of the same".

On the other side, THE MAVERICK STOLE THE MANTRA OF CHANGE FROM BARACK WHEN HE SELECTED A WOMAN REFORMER FOR VP, who has gained the respect of the State she governs as well as of the nation governors.

THE MCCAIN/PALIN TICKET HAS GIVEN HOPE FOR THE FUTURE OF AMERICA TO ALL THE 18 MILLION FORMER HILLARY SUPPORTERS who now have a very compelling reason to vote for the republican ticket, as a way to put their country first by electing a president that has the qualifications, experience and love for our country and at the same time elect a woman to the White House as equal partners in governance and leadership of our country.

Country First!


Posted by: Manolete | September 23, 2008 10:58 AM | Report abuse

It testifies to our collective ignorance that the republican party has any legs at all. Starting a war for the wrong reasons, huge deficits, gutting of regulatory agencies-staffed by former lobbyists and an economic melt-down. A good number of administration staff (including the VP) and those running McCain's campaign belong in jail instead of potentially prolonging our agony and decline.

Posted by: Byron | September 23, 2008 10:59 AM | Report abuse

The Truth?!!?? Republicans can't handle the The Truth!!! They're ideological demagogues who've ruined the country. They've left foreign and domestic policy in shambles and they want Americans to let them have another 4 tears to completely finish the job. McCain has morphed into Bush III.

No More Years!

Posted by: thebob.bob | September 23, 2008 10:59 AM | Report abuse

Gee I used to read the NY Times. And you can bluster and primp and defend them....but they are nothing but an extension of the Obama campaign. An advocacy with apparently a large readership....the counterpart to MSNBC. We have one candidate that has his own newspaper and cable station. Like many Americans that no longer watch and read these tabloid trashers....I made up my own mind.

And journalists will defend the biggest offenders as the the journalism in the US turns yellow for cowardice and tabloid lies.

Isnt't this the same paper that printed that McCain was having an affair with a lobbyist with no sources?

Posted by: Jackie | September 23, 2008 11:01 AM | Report abuse

There is no such thing as "independent journalisn" in today's world. There was in the past. The journalist world has become controlled and manipulative, especially The New York Times among others which I will not mention here. Instead of reporting the news as it actually happens, you journalist are reporting what you want the American people to read, your opinions, just as is done in the communist countries. McCain is not alone in his feelings about the press. Millions of Americans feel the same way. We have become quite selective in the newspapers we read and the TV anchors we watch. I am 70 years old, an independent who votes both Republican and Democrat. I in my lifetime have seen the newspapers and TV news drastically change to become almost tabloid and very, very slanted. You are doing a disfavor to the American public, especially its youth, brainwashing them. Our nation became great by people who thought for themselves and got things done. The newspapers of today in our country might as well be getting their news from some foreign country and reporting what they want us to feel, thing, and do.....just like robots. Shame on you. And don't call it a free press. It is a controlled press.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 23, 2008 11:02 AM | Report abuse

When McCain supporters start to express their anger about the biased reporting on Fox News, I'll start listening to their claims of media bias in other outlets.

Posted by: Joan | September 23, 2008 11:06 AM | Report abuse

The notion that Republican politicians lie, cheat and steal on behalf of their business network isn't exactly a newsflash.

It's been happening for over a hundred years.

The interesting dance happens when newspapers, and I'm not naming names here, try to pretend that they are oh-so-liberal by running lots of little stories that favor the democrats -- all the while spiking the big stories that would bring the whole Republican party down. For good.

To the point: when is the WaPo going to do an investigative piece on the Hensley-Marley-Lansky organized crime network that McCain married into in Arizona? The same Arizona where Bonanno 'retired'...

The people probably have a right to know about McCain's Arizona network. A compromised POTUS is more than just a little issue...

Posted by: Deep Blue | September 23, 2008 11:10 AM | Report abuse

It's a shame that the "forehead" is in the tank for the socialistic leaning lib side and does not ask for all the press (including himself) to just report on the news of both camps as to the veracity of each, whether right or wrong. When you can only claim one side is always at fault and not take the other to task when it's policies do not hold up to scrutiny, you are not a neutral reporter. You show where you hope this country should go and you are definately a byproduct of the 60's mentality carried foreward to the new millenium Mr.Dionne. If you went to collage during the 60's, it was definately a left leaning institution and did not teach you to think on both sides of a debate. Hence you are the " lib in the tank forehead"
{this posting will probably not last long since it brings into question Mr. Dionne's veracity of a neutral party reporting on both sides of the upcoming election instad of just his " in the tank side"}

Posted by: bob | September 23, 2008 11:12 AM | Report abuse

why are they covering the Obama Bill Ayers conection. Bill Ayers was a terrorist back in the 60's bombing many places here is a part of a news paper write up.
Mr. Ayers and his cohorts bombed the Pentagon, and he has never expressed regret for his actions. Barack Obama's first run for the Illinois State Senate was launched at a 1995 gathering at Mr. Ayers's home.

The Obama campaign has struggled to downplay that association. Last April, Sen. Obama dismissed Mr. Ayers as just "a guy who lives in my neighborhood," and "not somebody who I exchange ideas with on a regular basis." Yet documents in the CAC archives make clear that Mr. Ayers and Mr. Obama were partners in the CAC.

Ayers helped Obama get into politics why to help the movement. People are not stupid we can read between the lines.

Posted by: SAM | September 23, 2008 11:16 AM | Report abuse

while I was composing my piece, I see many other posters got into the non veracity issues of todays reporters of not writing about the issues but just reporting their views as they think we should see them. thanks to all who wrote worthwhile comments about reporters who should report and not pontificate

Posted by: bob | September 23, 2008 11:17 AM | Report abuse

I actually enjoy reading the NY times...the only problem I have is their incredible bias towards Obama...out of fifty articles about McCain can gaurentee 49 will be negative and one positive...gotta keep up appearance....Yes there have been many articles about Obamas past...but for some reason, they stop at a certain point and move on...The more I learn about Obama from other sources, the more I dont understand why the media just moves on....its like they are in some kind of fog....its absolutely shameful...

Posted by: robert palmer | September 23, 2008 11:17 AM | Report abuse

Tell a lie enough times and it becomes true. "Liberal Media" (only when it is an unfavorable story to the right) "Legislate from the bench" (only when it is an unfavorable decision to the right). Too bad it is so damn effective because the folks on the right and lock-step with the carrion call.

Perhaps if folks were a bit more educated they could think for themselves, rather than have Right-wing talking heads doing their thinking for them. Of course, this would have required them going to a "liberal" university.

Posted by: Ben | September 23, 2008 11:21 AM | Report abuse

I'm having a hard time wrapping my mind around what is happening with the name calling and finger pointing. If you don't want to be called out on your past, THEN DON'T DO QUESTIONABLE THINGS!!!! They NYT should reply with a big fat SO WHAT about being a pro-Obama organization. Is that bad? Is it bad to support a candidate who stands for TRUTH? The McCain camp sounds like a bunch of crybaby sally whiners who don't like what's being said about them (which is the truth might I add) so they run and cry to Mom and expect sympathy from people because people are "picking on them". No one is picking-its actually quite refreshing to find out about their scandals and no ma'ams BEFORE the election, rather than after. ENOUGH IS ENOUGH. And furthermore DEAR RICK DAVIS- You actually had me holding my stomach and falling over laughing during your conference call yesterday where you said that the NYT must love you because they keep writing about you. Um, don't flatter yourself. In case you didn't notice, THEY WERE WRITING ABOUT HOW TWO FACED YOU ARE.


Posted by: The Democratic Warrior | September 23, 2008 11:25 AM | Report abuse


You say, with respect to the Ayers association...

"People are not stupid we can read between the lines."

Indeed, that's why we know that Obama is not in the business of domestic terrorism, as much as Hannity would like to tell you that he is (or will be).

Posted by: Ben | September 23, 2008 11:25 AM | Report abuse

Okay, now we see conservative McCain supporters as paranoid. I forgot that Karl Rove was a master at stirring up massive amounts of fear in his supposedly "strong and courageous" right-wingers. Fear of everything! Fear of media! Fear of socialists! And, also, anger. Anger of women who didn't get their way, re: Hillary. These women cannot be serious, only vengeful. Can't they see that Palin sets the cause for women, as Hillary points out, back into the last century? if you believe Palin is a "reformer" please offer proof. So far, her echo-chamber on refusing the bridge to nowhere has been disproved by unbiased media in all directions! Reformer? She is a creationist and thinks global warming "just sort of happened." Hillary knows science and is, in fact, a reformer. Don't dishonor our Hillary! By the way, I'm a woman Hillary's age.

Posted by: cturtle1 | September 23, 2008 11:27 AM | Report abuse

"Little regard for factual accuracy."

Aw, come on Ben...You don't have to be so polite. The truth would be closer to "great regard for factual distortion whenever possible."

Posted by: TXCourtney | September 23, 2008 11:29 AM | Report abuse

This just shows the shallowness of the dialogue from both sides. The left defends those media that are attacked from the right all the while slamming talk radio and Rupert Murdoch's media machine. The right responds that 'their media' is only a response to the leftist spin from mainstream outlets and the audience is free to change the channel etc.
Neither side is willing to disarm and the circle a news story runs between the two is nothing else if not amusing.

Posted by: Banned in Boston | September 23, 2008 11:29 AM | Report abuse

Unfortunately, the McShame organization knows that many people consider the Times, The Washington Post and other high profile papers as "elitist", and is trying to prey on that fact and the fact that ignorant people love to bash "elistists". Their entire campaign is based on the wizard of oz principle "don't look behind the curtain, kid". I really expected more from the man, but he's resorted to the old party tactics. I'll bet he'd deny that Palin is being coached by a host of Bush folks too. What shame and a sham - maverick my butt!

Posted by: carl c | September 23, 2008 11:41 AM | Report abuse

i am a Obama supporter but i would also like to here more about Obama and Ayers relationship.Its important to hear it all.If he is linked with him we should know. Is that wrong or is it because the dem's witch i am are to scared to know the truth?

Posted by: steve | September 23, 2008 11:42 AM | Report abuse

In response to cturtle1 who wrote:
I'd begun to despair. And by the way, conservative haters of media need to finally realize that it's truth that they hate, not the bearers of truth.
Is it the truth people hate or the way people spin the truth, and there is no better proof of that when the Obama supporters who in order to win at all costs branded both Clintons racists and bigots and the media went for it big time and couldn't cover it enough. Funny the truth never mattered there when the media loved to rehash old Clinton scandals in their push to move Obama ahead of Senator Clinton and covered every false claim of racism as if it were the truth. Did I ever hear or see or read about Obama denying these claims - No! So, it is not the truth people don't like o hear, it is the twisting and lies and innuendo that are delivered by a media who wish to see one person in particular elected to the White House. And, as much as you care to disagree, that's my opinion. I don't vote so I don't care who wins. I don't care that you seem to think I am conservative either and therefore need to be dismissed as nothing more than a complainer.

Posted by: foreigner | September 23, 2008 11:46 AM | Report abuse

Yet the McCain campaing doesn't complain about Rupert Murdoch's media companies.


Posted by: Sparky | September 23, 2008 11:51 AM | Report abuse

AK and others are right. The NY Times may have done 40 stories on Obama, but all are fawning pieces that don't dare ask any sort of tough questions about his background or views.

As has been pointed out, for example, hardly anyone in the MSM has looked at Obama's ties to confessed terrorist William Ayers. But just this week, Stanley Kurtz in the Wall Street Journal does an indepth piece that raises a lot of questions about their long, involved relationship in Chicago on left-wing education issues. This is an issue that the Times could have looked into months ago, if it is as tough on Obama as it claims.

But it has refused to touch the matter. The only reason the paper could be avoiding it is that it doesn't want to hurt the chances of its Chosen One.

Posted by: Doug | September 23, 2008 11:53 AM | Report abuse

Jackie, a candidate with his own newspaper and cable station?

Hmmm... I think you may mean Karl Rove writing for the Wall Street Journal and the pro-Republican news station FoxNews?

I am an independent, not a democrat or republican. So, I think I am less biased in saying that FoxNews for a number of years now has sicked me with Hannity and the like going to extraordinary great lengths to exagerate the downside of the democrats and ignore the true wrongs that have been going on with Bush, Cheney, Rove, Delay, and now the lying ads of McCain/Palin and the RNC.

The Dems have their wrongs too, but the Repubs have just gone too far in the past few years to shamefully and purposely deceive and manipulate public opinion when campaigning for elections, on the underlying reasons for the war (why we are truly in Iraq in the first place), what has been going on behind the scenes with the economy/Wall Street the last number of years, etc.

The Repubs historically like the smoke screen of bashing the Dems for being "big spending liberals". Does anyone actually care that over the last 50+ years when the Repubs are in power, federal spending has actually been at its highest? That when Repubs have been in power, that our national debt has been at its highest (meaning we are borrowing more foreign money and putting our future national and economic security at risk by having to pander to the countries we are borrowing money from - i.e. China, Saudi Arabia, etc)?

But what angers me the most is constantly being lied to. It is immoral.

So, even though I am an independent, the lesser of the two evils seems to be the Dems as they at least seem to have a conscience (although there are some Dems who have pushed the envelope too). Other than a few good Republicans, it seems the Republican party from the top down has become corrupt with lies and at best "half truths".

Posted by: John | September 23, 2008 11:53 AM | Report abuse

Anyone else find it ironic that making all of these awful ads meant to show McCain favorably, McCain has created a lot of negative press for himself? He really should just play up his strengths -- whatever they are -- and stop trying to be something he is not.

Posted by: Mary | September 23, 2008 11:54 AM | Report abuse

McCain--fighting hard to hide the truth from Americans. He's a true patriot.

Posted by: PJ | September 23, 2008 11:58 AM | Report abuse

if your running for president yes your past is important. We need the facts. If Obama was dealing with Ayers we should know all the facts. Just like we have been given facts about Palin. Thats all we heard about for weeks.Fair play but for some reason the media isn't playing fair.Ayers is a bad guy he has done a lot of things and if Obama has anything or had anything to do with him it should be told

Posted by: peter | September 23, 2008 12:00 PM | Report abuse


The Republican party - and Republican administrations, with few notable exceptions like Lincoln, TR, and Ike - have always been corrupt.

President Grant was on the take, but people didn't want to believe it because he was their war hero... He probably justified it by thinking that Uncle Sam should have given him loot and property the same way the Brits hooked up Marlborough and Wellington... I'm not sure how McCain lives with himself, but I'm sure that he, too, has his rationalizations... But he is crooked. And if our press still did investigative journalism they'd peel away the layers of that crooked Arizona network he married into. Of course, McCain's father-in-law's boss allegedly had a guy killed for investigating him...

Posted by: Deep Blue | September 23, 2008 12:03 PM | Report abuse

“if he complains enough about press bias, we mainstream sorts will cower, cringe and try to seek false equivalences between the two campaigns.”

Also, this tactic inoculates 'low information' voters from exposure to the facts. The Right has made a very successful practice of demonizing 'the media' in the eyes of their base, to the point where their only perceived options for gathering information are GOP controlled outlets like Fox and Limbaugh. The same goes for education. You won't find many in the GOP leadership who would deprive themselves or their children of an Ivy League education, yet they forment a culture of anti-intellectualism among their base with cries of elitism and wonkery. An educated, informed electorate is the enemy of Republicanism, whereas willfully ignorant jingoism is its friend.

Posted by: Rolleyes | September 23, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

"an educated, informed electorate is the enemy of Republicanism"...

I hear that. But don't forget that when latinos finally come of political consciousness - and realize that Republicans and big business have pillaged latin america for years - that they are going to be a large, pissed-off voting bloc.

Ever wonder why we can travel to Russia, China, Iran and North Korea but not to Cuba? It's all about exploitation from back in the day and revenge. American foreign policy towards Cuba is subservient to Republicans winning Florida and their business network getting revenge...

Posted by: Deep Blue | September 23, 2008 12:13 PM | Report abuse

whats the problem. Mccain complained about the media.He has every right so does Obama and he has complained also. You complain here on your computer whats the difference?. You can complain but a person running for office can't? I thought we had freedom of speech? You are playing with fire on both side.playing judge and jury.

Posted by: may | September 23, 2008 12:16 PM | Report abuse

Amazing how this ticket has become so insignificant in such a short time.

Is it the refusal to cooperate with troopergate? Is it the constant lies about bridge to nowhere? Is it Mccain's lobyists helping to create mortgage crisis? Or has a majority of people woke up and realized these two are not mavericks, not reformers, have no ideas of thier own and finally admit to needing to address the economy.


Posted by: tony | September 23, 2008 12:16 PM | Report abuse

Stand fast, EJ. The McCain campaign isn't fond of truth-squadding and Schmidt is running scared.

Posted by: DB | September 23, 2008 12:16 PM | Report abuse

They bully because it works. Pure Rovian strategy: turn your weakness into a strength by attacking credibility.

Posted by: John | September 23, 2008 12:18 PM | Report abuse

Let's hear the true facts on:
* McCains TRUE role in THE KEATING FIVE (remember the S&L fiasco or have we already forgotten?)
* I'd like to see a FINANCIAL SIDE-BY-SIDE COMPARISON of their income/assets. Including all four candidates and their spouses.
* I'd like to see a side-by-side comparison of their legal records
* I'd like to see a side-by-side of their educational background, just hard facts, without editorial or spin. While we're at it, do the same for the spouses.
* Troopergate and the need for TRANSPARENCY.
* While we're at it, can someone explain to me the importance of being able to shoot/dress a moose to the job of a national leader? Are we being threatened with invasion by Bullwinkle and his cronies?
* Why did McCain end up a POW? Aside from having been a POW, what distinguished his military career? (Yes, he was a POW, my hat's off to him and all who have gone through such an ordeal, but what else defined his military career).
* What did McCain do after returning from Vietnam? For how long did he stay in the military? Why did he run for office instead of staying in the military? I'd like to know, in concrete terms, if he ran for office for the money, power, or because he truly wanted to serve his country.

Posted by: KickTheThugsOut | September 23, 2008 9:31 AM

Some very interesting questions offered up here.
Everyone in the media seems to assume the public knows all about McCain. Thing is, a lot of this (especially the Keating 5 mess) is not well-known at all. My wife (who is 26) knows nothing about this part of McCain's history; don't you think most younger voters are in the same boat?

By assuming "everyone knows," we ensure that only a handful will know.

Get out there and report on the history of these folks, reporters. You've covered Obama's history to death, let's see a little tough love applied to McCain.

Posted by: DB | September 23, 2008 12:20 PM | Report abuse

whats the problem. Mccain complained about the media.He has every right so does Obama and he has complained also. You complain here on your computer whats the difference?. You can complain but a person running for office can't? I thought we had freedom of speech? You are playing with fire on both side.playing judge and jury.

Posted by: may | September 23, 2008 12:16 PM
Of course they can complain, May. Nobody has said they can't.
However, the McCain campaign can't override the media's honest accounting of the facts, which do NOT support McCain's contentions. They want to drown out the media by accusing bias, rather than address their many misstatements and bald-faced lies.
They can say all they like-- but let's please extend the same courtesy to the media and their truth squads. Letting one campaign drown out whatever they don't like to hear squelches free speech, it does not support it.

Posted by: DB | September 23, 2008 12:23 PM | Report abuse

I asked the NYTimes to publish a timeline of Obama's life from birth to present and a week later, when Sara Palin was selected, they published a timeline of Sara Palin's life from birth to present. Where is the one I suggested?

Posted by: voice2 | September 23, 2008 12:26 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: swat68 | September 23, 2008 12:30 PM | Report abuse

plus ca change, plus c'est la meme chose.

Ooops, that was in French. Does that make me a traitor to my country?

Posted by: Lou Morin | September 23, 2008 12:30 PM | Report abuse

It's kind of funny that McCain and his surrogates complain TO the media ABOUT the media. What's not so funny is that the media then reports on it. Why? Is it news? I don't see how.

Really, did McCain's camp say that what was printed was untrue? No. All they did was complain about a story they didn't like. No news there.

Posted by: Kande | September 23, 2008 12:32 PM | Report abuse

you want more on Mccain dealings with Keating 5 mess. But no way want to hear about Obama and Ayers. sounds like you are all bias.Can't have it both ways.Most of you think the media is doing a fine job untell who you are voting for gets stabbed.Then all heck brakes out.I am not from America but i read all this stuff and from a point of veiw from outside America the news is bias in Obama favor.You guys can't see it because you all think you are right but the rest of the world is looking

Posted by: kip | September 23, 2008 12:39 PM | Report abuse

Dur... where am I?

Posted by: Georgey W. Bush | September 23, 2008 12:41 PM | Report abuse

Thank you E.J. The only way to counter these attacks by the McCain camp is to just keep reporting the truth. I do think of that expression "thou protests too much" when listening to all these very angry McCain advisors. They know these articles are accurate but they can't obviously say that so the only way they can counter them is to beat up on the messenger.

I just wonder what they are going to come up with to counter their own conservative supporters in the press now coming out and raising serious questions about McCain and Palin. (David Brooks and George Will just to name a few.)

Posted by: June | September 23, 2008 12:44 PM | Report abuse

You are not journalists. You are paritsan hacks.

Noone believes you anymore.

Posted by: reaon | September 23, 2008 12:48 PM | Report abuse

I remember stories in every major paper about Obama, his religion, and his pastor. Every story made his pastor to seem like a crazy man who shouts hateful things from the pulpit every day, without going deeper into the pastor's past. Obama was forced to denounce his pastor and forced to give a speech on his religion and on his race.

McCain would never, ever have to do this.

I am a catholic, not practicing, but it doesn't matter. People normally go to specific churches because of their location and because of the people they meet inside. The pastors can be good and bad, but most of the time, the pastors' views don't affect the practitioners. They are there to study the work of God.

If every follower had to leave their church every time the pastor did something wrong, all churches, no matter what denomination, would be empty.

Posted by: matt | September 23, 2008 12:51 PM | Report abuse

As a 60-year old, I write to ask that commenters stop using the word "senile" to characterize Sen. McCain. I am an Obama supporter, but I disagree with the idea that McCain, because of his age, is thereby disqualified to be President, and that if he takes decisions I think are stupid or unwise, that means he is senile. I do think age is relevant - his world-view was formed at a certain time, and he has not shown himself capable of keeping up with the times. But that is no senility. Obama supporters who call McCain senile drive the wedge deeper between some groups of voters (us oldsters, mainly) and Sen. Obama. We who support him should rather be trying to unify people behind him.

Nancy Brockway

Posted by: Nancy Brockway | September 23, 2008 12:52 PM | Report abuse

i am from Germany and have bee watching the press and the comments on the campaign.I am interested in it.I use to think America was good people but all i see any more is spoiled kids.You can't see it cause you are living it.Most the people here look at Mccain as hard hitter one that will defend your county to the end witch scares some country's witch is good for you. Most people here see Obama as a good talker with no plan really and would only talk to defend you witch could hurt you in the long run.A lot of people here want Obama to win because they think it will be funny to watch America surfer in the long run. Sorry to bust any ones bubbles but thats how it is here. So good luck to you all

Posted by: wolfgang | September 23, 2008 12:56 PM | Report abuse

I suspect that Steve Schmidt is not trying to intimidate political reporters, but is merely adding fresh and false material for the neo-con blogs to pick up while at the same time poisoning the well to keep as many people away from the NYTimes, the W-Post, PBS, NPR, etc. as possible. Schmidt also knows that a vast majority of avid newspaper readers in small and medium-sized markets who read their daily paper cover to cover have little or no idea what is going on with the most important presidential election of our time because the smaller markets have given up on any in-depth coverage of ANY issue or event, short of 9-11. It is the paucity of election news in Peoria-like markets coupled with blatant lies from the blogs and coupled with deliberate warping of truth in political ads (oh yes, Fox News, too) that Schmidt knows are the keys to winning on Nov. 4. And if he can intimidate a few reporters along the way, well that's just gravy.

Posted by: Wayne Falda | September 23, 2008 12:59 PM | Report abuse

"I have tried to post my moderate political opinion on the NYTimes blog many times and unless it's pro-Obama it doesn't get published."


Ditto here.If you're pro-McCain, your voice will likely NOT be heard.

Hey E.J.,

The fact that you refer to the NYT (or were you referring to TWP) as "Mainstream" is indicative of just how far off the left-edge you've fallen.

Both publications are agenda-based,biased, and they have no interest in balance or intellectual honesty.

If the NYT WERE intellectually honest, they might also in the same hit piece mention the 90 million Franklin Raines received in unearned bonuses through accounting Fraud, but that wouldn't fit in with a McCain hit-piece theme.

If they were intelectually honest, they might question Sen. Obama over how much he has received in campaign donations from Mr. Raines and J. Johnson (two major players in the destruction of our housing industry, it's resultant impact on the insurance industry, and the massive effect it has had on our stock-market).

Why are they not asking Senator Obama to explain exactly how much he has gotten in contributions from the Fannie-Mae foundation?

If they did so, the paltry $2Million Rick Davis received might not be as headline worthy as they have presented it.

Please E.J. stop trying the bastardize the notion of "freedom of the press" with your agenda-based drivel.

You have made yourself a Liberal Pundit, don't be ashamed of your chosen lot.

You're running to the rescue of one of your Liberal cohorts, and yet you don't have the spine to call it like it is. Instead, you've chosen to hide behind principles that you only pay lip-service to.

Shame on you.

Posted by: Scott | September 23, 2008 1:00 PM | Report abuse

I'm sick and tired of the media always trying to attack the republican party. For once cover the election with fairness and integrity stop expressing your own opinion, but rather report the facts. Go Palin!!!!

Posted by: Mar | September 23, 2008 1:01 PM | Report abuse

Posted by Steve:

"i am a Obama supporter but i would also like to here more about Obama and Ayers relationship.Its important to hear it all.If he is linked with him we should know. Is that wrong or is it because the dem's witch i am are to scared to know the truth?"

Ahhhh hahahaha... you republicans need to find someone who didn't flunk second grade if you want us to believe you... dems are 'elite': they can spell.

Posted by: ep thorn | September 23, 2008 1:01 PM | Report abuse

wow so don't always spell right big deal. What you're so mighty to put someone down because they missed spelled. Thats your goal in life.I never said anything bad when i wrote but boy i must have gotten under your skin about Obama. I am a Dem and proud of it but now i am wondering why your a Dem? Some Dem's are full of such hate.

Posted by: steve | September 23, 2008 1:12 PM | Report abuse

What is the general public smoking? I need some because I would like to live in a fantacy world too.

Take a look at what has been being done. McCain mistates the number of houses he and his wife own. We hear about it for weeks. Obama buys a house the same day Rezko buys the lot next door. A little later Rezko sells Obama some of the land (at a pretty good discount). How many times did Obama vote for items that benefitted Rezko? I know of at least 4 votes that benefited Rezko who is now in jail for dirty business practices. I still have not see anything on NBC, ABC or CBS on this. Yet, myself being too busy to do vasts amount of research like the news agency's was able to find this information out with little effort.

Media bias? If it looks like a fish, tastes like a fish and smells like a fish. Its probably a fish.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 23, 2008 1:12 PM | Report abuse

Unbiased reporting is about as possible as unbiased science. The difference: science tries to be unbiased and scientists are arrogant enough to believe they actually aren't biased. The reason you will never see an unbiased report, reporter or news program is because you cannot publish data tables, financial statements, a side by side of educational backgrounds, etc. because no one would read it or understand what to make of it. Hence, reporters pluck out highlights and blow them out of proportion for histrionic effect. Stirring up bs makes for controversy, which gets people talking (like here) which keeps people reading their papers, which promotes traffic, which generates income via advertising. If a reporter tried to write a completely unbiased story comparing data like an excel sheet, the editor would reject it. It's English 101. Writers have to narrate why they are presenting facts, statements, etc. to make a point. They have to say something, generally starting with the catchiest bit in the beginning to hook the reader's attention. You can pretty much guarantee that you are never getting both sides of a story or multiple viewpoints in any news article. People have some interesting viewpoints on this forum, but all in all, i rarely here anyone speak with any substantial evidence or substance when talking about politicians, because few people have much knowledge about politics. We are not political scientists, we're the ignorant masses. Unfortunately, the media, rather than enlightening us, put on a charade of absurdity. Politicians are the same way. If you start talking real with people, they don't know what you are talking about, so they keep it short and simple for people to understand. The system is so complex and multifaceted that few people (if any) have an intelligent grasp on what's going on right now... yet we have historians who will tell us what happened five years ago.

Posted by: dave | September 23, 2008 1:13 PM | Report abuse

As we become more partisan, it becomes easier for either party to discredit our press. America beware. This path leads to ignorance of the American people.

Posted by: Bill | September 23, 2008 1:16 PM | Report abuse

"the McShame organization..."

Good signaling device, that phrase. It alerts the reader that nothing of value will follow those words.

Posted by: RJ | September 23, 2008 1:25 PM | Report abuse

The scary thing about of this kind of news is that it could be an indication how a Mccain administration will manage mediam reports that do not favor them. So much for accountability... Would it get mcuh worsen the lack of accountability from the White House?

Posted by: Anonymous | September 23, 2008 1:32 PM | Report abuse

The last time you guys cowered and cringed from intimidation was in the wake of 9-11 and the runup to the Iraq war. As a result of this capitulation, the press was complicit in misleading tbe American public into a war.

To do anything less than challenge McCain would be to deliberately mislead the American people into basing their votes on falsities.

I certainly hope the press corps has learned its lessons and won't fall for this.

The reason the Repugnicans are trying it is that it worked so well the last time.

Posted by: Stefani | September 23, 2008 1:34 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, the NY Times, Washington Post and the rest of the mainstream press are SO in the tank for Obama that they continue to ignore the story of how McCain and Kerry sold out the POWs and MIAs.

Schanberg has again produced a great piece about it, complete with documentation - and not a peep from the gutless press.

This action alone should disqualify McCain from holding public office.

Posted by: Angry Soldier | September 23, 2008 1:34 PM | Report abuse

The only thing that is sadder than the McShame campaign is how the lazy, report anything regardless of truth media is supporting it. McShame has successfully manipulated the media into using their outlets as purveyors of false, baseless claims and leaving the true investigative reporting to blogs. No wonder people read blogs instead of newspapers. Better reporting goes into most of them. Why wasn't the truth reported in the Post along with the crap story McShame put out yesterday? Why are you placing THIS story on an opinion page instead of as a front page investigative journalism piece? Why do you report lies and write opinions about facts? Is there no journalist in the US concerned with more than a pretty smile and an approval rating? Why don't you just put McShame's campaign on your payroll and just them write your content for you. Then again, if I were to do some investigative work, I'd probably find out you already have.

Posted by: Here we go again | September 23, 2008 1:39 PM | Report abuse

Only in the neocon bizarro-world---where up is down, black is white, fact is fiction---does refusal to print right-wing smears (that is, lies) become "liberal media" bias; does insistence on sticking to provable facts become "fawning pieces that don't dare ask any sort of tough questions."

And you know what? I say let them keep at it! Reality has a distinct liberal bias (unlike the MSM), and no one ever lost in the long term by sticking with objective reality. Before the neocons realize what has happened, they will have become drooling simpletons who can only answer questions with one-word answers (not far to fall, granted). It can't happen soon enough!

Posted by: Stephen | September 23, 2008 1:40 PM | Report abuse

"Media bias? If it looks like a fish, tastes like a fish and smells like a fish. Its probably a fish."


Appropriate analogy when referencing these two fish-wrappers (WP & NYT)

Posted by: Scott | September 23, 2008 1:40 PM | Report abuse

Patriotic Americans support a free and independent press. Thank you.

Posted by: Tom J | September 23, 2008 1:41 PM | Report abuse

This article is a perfect example of media bias that the McCain campaign complains about. The author states that it is embarrassing for McCain to point out Obama's ties to the GSE's when he has ties of his own. Yet the author doesn't state it is embarrassing for the Obama campaign to point out McCain's ties to the GSE's in spite of Obama's? Why is it embarrassing for McCain and not for Obama? They both have ties. They both point fingers. McCain spoke in favor of regulation of the GSEs in 2005, but the bill that would do it (Housing Finance Reform Act of 2005) was defeated by the Democrats. That's a far more relevant fact than any of the ties of either candidate.

Posted by: Ryan Tait | September 23, 2008 1:41 PM | Report abuse

Good to see that there is still some free press that Republican smear folks can't shut up!

Posted by: Wayne | September 23, 2008 1:41 PM | Report abuse

Way to hang in there, Dionne! I hope the rest of the media follows suit.

Posted by: JudiNV | September 23, 2008 1:42 PM | Report abuse

I am not pro McCain or Obama. We know McCain's life history. I just want to know Obama's, asides from his self written biography, before I make my decision in November. I don't like blind dates.

Posted by: Voice2 | September 23, 2008 1:42 PM | Report abuse

Of course, once again, the McCain campaign can't offer up a single fact in support of its assertions - notice how Schmidt failed to refute anything in the article.

I cannot wait for these debates. I'm most interested to see what McCain will do when taxes come up and Obama gets to tell the whole country about his 81% more inclusive tax cuts. What's John going to do? Will he continue to spew outright lies into the camera and the faces of the American people, or will he finally face the music?

His deregulatory history and Bush-emulating tax plan are plenty in this climate to keep him out of the White House. That's why his campaign has offered only one thing since their convention: political garbage, a landfill's worth, every single day.

Posted by: Ken Wieczerza | September 23, 2008 1:42 PM | Report abuse

Obama has received several times more in contributions in 3 years from Fannie Mae Freddie Mac than McCain has in his career. The top recipients are Dodd, Clinton and Obama among other democrats. However I suppose with democrats they are so noble for the people that contributions never cloud their judgement ;)

Posted by: Cryos | September 23, 2008 1:42 PM | Report abuse

Obama associates with a known terrorist (William Ayers)bent on destrying America, a pastor that want to damn America and a convicted felon and the NYT looks the other way.

Obama votes 4 times to allow born alive babies to die and it's not reported.
LIVE spelled backwards is EVIL.

The only censorship going on is the liberal media of Obama's real record. I bet this post never sees light on your web site.

Posted by: obamanationofdesolation | September 23, 2008 1:42 PM | Report abuse

As a former editorial staffer of the NYT, an editor at Time and later Newsweek, I believe strongly that the Times has abandoned any pretense of objectivity. And I am not talking just about the reportage, but headlines, picture choice and placement and decisions about whose campaign to critique first.
To be fair, I must point out that the NYT is not alone in this.

Posted by: Omoore | September 23, 2008 1:43 PM | Report abuse

"Independent" journalism - you're joking right?

What is so "independent" about a cadre of reporters who do everything from collectively omit the obvious ignorance the world will surly see during Obama's try at an unscripted debate on one hand while on the other they run repeated articles about Palins experience when it is ten times that of their socialist shill.

Maybe a look at Webster’s is in order.

Posted by: Robert Campbell | September 23, 2008 1:43 PM | Report abuse

Ryan Tate:

Simply put:

Because everyone knows about Obama's ties to Fannie and Freddie. The McCain campaign made sure of that last week.

For its own part, the McCain camp seems pretty reluctant to acknowledge its (seemingly even deeper) ties to Fannie and Freddie, wouldn't you say?

By the McCain campaign's logic, it would be disrespectful, or downright outrageous, for a news organizaiton to point to McCain's history of being a deregulation advocate. In other words: when there is history behind a story the McCain camp doesn't like or can't control, it's just GOT to be the work of an angry liberal media.

They're using Republican gutter logic, and it's hurting their cause.

Posted by: Ken W | September 23, 2008 1:47 PM | Report abuse

The New York Times is as independent as E.J. Dionne, which is to say not at all. They're mere mouthpieces for the left.

There's rather a large difference between Schmidt, who was paid to to PR, and Johnson and Raines who were CEO's responsible for fraud and looting Fannie Mae at taxpayer expense, but you won't find that in the NYT or EJ Dionne.

Posted by: DukeCT | September 23, 2008 1:49 PM | Report abuse

I hate to disagree, but since not being involved in your elections, but with satellite coverage of all your media and ease of internet searches, complaints about the press are fully warranted. Your mainstream media by and large have fully been in the tank for Obama since the beginning and any uninterested party can see that as plainly as the nose on your face. His history making aspect of being the first African American has led your coverage from the start and experience and qualifications have been shortchanged because any attempt at scrutiny was labelled as the person being a bigot. The race card was played unfairly and the media went right along with it. Now McCain and Palin have nothing but poor press no matter what and the scrutiny of both fairly is laughable. Obama mistakes are excused away while McCain's ridiculed. The first 4 days of seemingly unendless trashing of Governor Palin was shameful. Unfortunately so many Americans are so polarized that objectivity has all but disappeared and no matter what is said, if it is not favorable, then people are called on it. I presume the press finds it more fun to ridicule on age than have been fair when discussing race, and for some reason want to be part of the history making aspect less they be left out. The media deserve every bit of criticism that gets hurled at them. They have become part of the strategy to get someone elected rather than report on those who should be charged with that task.

Posted by: foreigner | September 23, 2008 9:33 AM


Shut up John McCain and go eat some applesauce

Posted by: rottnkid | September 23, 2008 1:50 PM | Report abuse

Ryan Tait:

First, this is an *opinion* piece, not a news article. There is a difference. It is an important one. Republicans want you to believe there is no difference. They live in a world in which there is no truth; it is all op-ed and spin to them.

Second, the Congress was controlled by Republicans in 2005. If McCain's bill didn't pass then, it is Republicans', not Democrats', fault. When the bill came up in a Democrat-controlled Congress, it was killed in a committee that Obama does not serve on. McCain's bill had nothing to do with Obama.

Third, in 2005 and in 2006, Obama introduced legislation to curb mortgage fraud, which is just as important to this scandal as is Freddie and Fannie, though McCain wants to make the entire crisis Fannie and Freddie's fault (which btw no economist except those on his staff agrees with). If he wants to make the argument are the source of all of the corruption and the crisis, then he should be accountable for the number of people on his staff who have lobbied for those corporations and *personally* profited from that work (their *salaries* were paid by those companies--we're not just talking about campaign contributions).

Posted by: ethel08 | September 23, 2008 1:50 PM | Report abuse

Of course the Post and The Times won't report anything on Franklin Raines and his $200 million connection to Obama but they will both dispatch a dozen reporters to Alaska to talk to Sarah Palin's 3rd grade teacher.

Truth hurts, huh?

Posted by: Jim | September 23, 2008 1:51 PM | Report abuse

"There's rather a large difference between Schmidt, who was paid to to PR, and Johnson and Raines who were CEO's responsible for fraud and looting Fannie Mae at taxpayer expense, but you won't find that in the NYT or EJ Dionne."

Yes, one major difference is that Steve Schmidt is still actively working for the campaign. Today, we find out that William Timmons, another lobbyist for Freddie and Fannie, has been tapped to lead McCain's potential transition team.

If McCain is so disgusted, why doesn't he remove these people from his staff?

Posted by: ethel08 | September 23, 2008 1:52 PM | Report abuse

I would like Obama except for one precept.

The friend of my enemy is also my enemy.

Media has stopped being an advocate of the truth and decided to drive change. The bias in the media towards the anointed one, Obama, is unacceptable. But with a Free Press, you can get dishonest press.

The dishonest press is my enemy, and their friend is Obama.

That is more troubling than any differences between the candidates.

Posted by: JTW | September 23, 2008 1:52 PM | Report abuse

Of course, E.J. Dionne is but one voice and frankly, he's hardly known outside the beltway except among the Sunday talk-show circuit. Of course, these days you can also get a good view of how lousy the mainstream media is covering things from Columbia Journalism Review.

But the problem is, how many unenployed auto workers in Ohio know who E.J. Dionne is, or read CJR? And they cling to iconography wrapped in a patina of the American flag. That means John McCain. A man I once and recently admired and who has now become a deceitful shill. G*d help us if he and the muppet from Alaska are elected.

Posted by: Bill Johnson | September 23, 2008 1:53 PM | Report abuse

Yep Hard hitting journalism!!! My friend had a Doberman....He didn't like me ; So I never tried to pet him. I don't balme McCain.

1. In Law School, Obama Found Political Voice [New York Times, 1/28/07]
2. So Far, Obama Can’t Take Black Vote For Granted [New York Times, 2/2/07]
3. Obama Had Slaveowning Kin [New York Times, 3/3/07]
4. Disinvitation by Obama Is Criticized [New York Times, 3/6/07]
5. Obama, in Brief Investing Foray In '05, Took Same Path as Donors [New York Times, 3/7/07]
6. Obama Says His Investments Presented No Conflicts of Interest [New York Times, 3/8/07]
7. Charisma and a Search for Self In Obama's Hawaii Childhood [New York Times, 3/17/07]
8. Clinton Camp Challenges Obama on Iraq. [New York Times, 3/22/07]
9. After 2000 Loss, Obama Built Donor Network From Roots Up [New York Times, 4/3/07]
10. A Candidate, His Minister and the Search for Faith [New York Times, 4/30/07]
11. An Obama Patron and Friend Until an Indictment in Illinois [New York Times, 6/14/07]
12. In Illinois, Obama Proved Pragmatic and Shrewd. [New York Times, 7/30/07]
13. In 2000, a Streetwise Veteran Schooled a Bold Young Obama. [New York Times, 9/9/07]
14. Loyal Network Backs Obama After His Help. [New York Times, 10/1/07]
15. Obama’s Account of New York Years Often Differs From What Others Say. [New York Times, 10/30/07]
16. It’s Not Just ‘Ayes’ and ‘Nays’: Obama’s Votes in Illinois Echo. [New York Times, 12/20/07]
17. Nuclear Leaks and Response Tested Obama in Senate [New York Times, 2/3/08]
18. Daschle Uses Senate Ties To Blaze Path for Obama [New York Times, 2/5/08]
19. Old Friends Say Drugs Played Bit Part in Obama’s Young Life [New York Times, 2/9/08]
20. Seeking Unity, Obama Feels Pull of Racial Divide [New York Times, 2/12/08]
21. Obama Walks a Difficult Path as He Courts Jewish Voters [New York Times, 3/1/08]
Obama in Senate: Star Power, Minor Role [New York Times, 3/9/08]
22. A Free-Spirited Wanderer Who Set Obama’s Path [New York Times, 3/14/08]
23.cPastor Defends His Predecessor at Obama’s Chicago Church [New York Times, 3/17/08]
24. Obama’s Narrator [New York Times, 4/1/07]
25. Wright Remains a Concern for Some Democrats [New York Times, 5/1/08]
26. A Strained Wright-Obama Bond Finally Snaps [New York Times, 5/1/08]
27. A Pulpit-and-Pews Gulf on Obama’s Ex-Pastor [New York Times, 5/2/08]
28. A Fiery Theology Under Fire [New York Times, 5/4/08]
29. Obama Secret Service Agent Tied To Sex Joke [New York Times, 5/15/08]
30. The Story of Obama, Written by Obama [New York Times, 5/18/08]
31. Following Months of Criticism, Obama Quits His Church [New York Times, 6/1/08]
32. Many Blacks Find Joy in Unexpected Breakthrough [New York Times, 6/5/08]
33. Where Whites Draw The Line [New York Times, 6/8/08]
34. Obama’s Organizing Years, Guiding Others and Finding Himself [New York Times, 7/7/08]
35. As a Professor, Obama Enthralled Students and Puzzled Faculty [New York Times, 7/30/08]
36. Delicate Obama Path on Class and Race Preferences [New York Times, 8/3/08]
37. Big Donors, Too, Have Seats at Obama Fundraising Table [New York Times, 8/6/08]
38. Is Obama the End of Black Politics? [New York Times, 8/10/08]
39. Obama’s 2003 Stand on Abortion Draws New Criticism in 2008 [New York Times, 8/20/08]
40. Obama Aides Defend Bank’s Pay to Biden Son [New York Times, 8/25/08]
41. Once a Convention Outsider, Obama Navigated a Path to the Marquee [New York Times, 8/27/08]
42. Obama Looks to Lessons From Chicago in His National Education Plan [New York Times, 9/10/08]

Posted by: RJ from NC | September 23, 2008 1:54 PM | Report abuse

The GOP and Mccain dont want to fess up to anything...

A quick line item of "the conservative' legacy" during the past eight years...

The worst election fraud in history - the 2000 presidential election...

The first Major attack against America in the lower 48… (9/11)

The first American attack against a sovereign country in history - Iraq, all based on subversion and duplicity...there were no WMDs!

The worst federal handling of a catastrophic even in American History, Katrina...

The worst time period in American history for privatizing the federal institutions of war, education, prison, etc.
There still trying to get our social security and give it to the stock market!

The largest federal debt in American history...from great prosperity to collapse in just 8 years!

The worst collapse of our mortgage, banking and lending institutions to date...
I could go on all day...i get sick to my stomach!

So is this what happens when you elect two GOP ex-oilmen to run our nation?

And now the right wing wants to give us McCain, a 95% mirrored image of past failed GOP policies and Palin, who is more to the right then Bush/Cheney: an absolute dolt, no intelligence...
just more of that self-righteous underachiever garbage that Bush represents!

We will be living with BUSH/GOP failures for the rest of our lives! Enough is enough!
What sort of leadership sits by ideally as the metaphorical tires fall off the economy- such as in the bailout! For years nothing was done regarding the protection in oversight and regualtion!

We already know what the lack of oversight and regulation has created- a catastrophe!

The nation needs regulation, oversight and to dump the GOP. "Now thats real change we can believe in!"

Posted by: rube | September 23, 2008 1:54 PM | Report abuse

Jim, the truth must hurt you because you guys make up lies faster than they can be printed. You smear based on "connections." You know full well that Raines has never worked for the campaign and never contributed to the Obama campaign, which WAS investigated by the newspapers. You just don't want to accept what they found through federal reports, so you spread LIES and SMEARS.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 23, 2008 1:54 PM | Report abuse

The GOP machine, with Rove, Limbough, Hannity, Murdoch, and Beck. For all the love and patriotism they say they have for their country, they sure can't help themselves from being bias against Democrats or as they call them "Liberals, socialist". There is no objectivity in their programs. There is however an audience of like minded individuals whose misconceptions and half truths they're able to use to manipulate those who live their lives on sound bites and are not able of analytic rationalization. During the past eight years our country has been hung out to dry. Katrina, Iraq, and now a last minute ultimatum from Wall Street.FEMA is failing Galveston too after IKE. Does our Government have the credibility to be given the benefit of the doubt. Nope, no way. As far as McCain, is a little too late to be a convert to Wall Street oversight. The problem has been all over the internet for years, what kind of panel do you need to see an economy in trouble and working class American Families suffering while the top managers in Wall Street are benefiting from uncontrollable greed. Bonuses? How about an orange suit and a free trip to Angola (Not Africa, I mean Louisiana).

Posted by: Willie in Kansas | September 23, 2008 1:55 PM | Report abuse

Facts have a well-known liberal bias. Any media outlet that insists upon reporting them is anti-Republican and deserves to be boycotted!

Posted by: JakeD | September 23, 2008 1:56 PM | Report abuse

Go Media Go. Write anything and everything as long as it doesn't, in the Supreme Courts opinon, "pander to the purient interests" (leave porn out of the discussion) or promote slander -- and let ME read different perspectives and let ME filter out the BS. We enjoy so many ways of getting news in America and the media, ... no wonder Russia, China and every other country marvels at our freedom. I don't see any tanks pulling in front of the Capital, Senate or Congress in defense of some schmuck and his cohorts.

Your profession is respected so, don't let anyone take that from us.

Posted by: vs | September 23, 2008 1:57 PM | Report abuse

Someone said " ALL JOURNALISTS TAKE THIS AS A SLAP IN THE FACE AND REALLY START DIGGING PAST THE SURFACE OF THE MCCAIN/PALIN FIASCO." I think its true...Journalist has more power ...they have a right to show people what is right and wrong. Go take a pen and write what is good for American people and Country....Best of Luck !!!!

Posted by: Jenny | September 23, 2008 1:59 PM | Report abuse

This election is about nothing less than the miscreants on the left trying, through their do nothing know nothing puppet, to drive this country to the socialist goals we have been warned about for 60 years.

Why else would we see at this stage of the game why would we see
1) the least experienced candidate in more than 100 years
2) a candidate who processes the most liberal voting record out of 100 Senators
3) a candidate who has the most unscrupulous group of racists, anti American associates imaginable
4) a candidate who has had his hand in the pocket of Fannie/Freddie to the tune of $150K (only second to Dodd @ $165K)
5) A candidate who has changed his position to match his opponent at every turn.

Obama should never have won the primaries or have a remote chance of winning the white house. The imbecilic logic on the left backed by the power of the media is the only plausible explanation.

Posted by: Obama - the left wing's puppet | September 23, 2008 2:00 PM | Report abuse

I'm not American or even living in America.

However, I am constantly bombarded with media coverage of your elections and it's obvious the US media is as biased, slanted and agenda-driven as the rest of the world's!

There is a def. pro-Obama bias in most major newspapers and news channels - more subtle then Fox News' pro-Republican sledgehammer, but also more insidiuous.

Posted by: A. Humayun | September 23, 2008 2:02 PM | Report abuse

You can not equate "independent" to "irresponsible," "distortion," "dishonest" and "unethical." NY Times has been this way for a long time. Look what NY Times did to the four Duke students who were fausely charged with rape. NY Times, NBC, MSNBC have been hurting the profession of journalist and damaing our society and culture. The way they conduct themselves is even more obnoxious than the communist countries that enforce censorship.

Posted by: C.T./Detroit | September 23, 2008 2:02 PM | Report abuse

For some enlightenment on a related subject, read

Posted by: Bill Johnson | September 23, 2008 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Wow .....It’s amazing how quickly liberals jump on the Rush, Hannity, Rove talking points etc. As far as for the media in general I can see your point we have several while you have :PBS, NPR, CBS, NBC, MSNBC, ABC, Air America (are they still up and running?) Plus most of the Producers, Directors, Actors/Actresses (not PC but who cares) And the AP and print media at large which by the way is losing revenue daily any thoughts on why? I should answer that for you since democrat talking points are limited to being a victim. But, I wont. So as far as I'm concerned it's all fair. After all. Being a liberal is a gutless choice right :-)

Posted by: RJ from NC | September 23, 2008 2:05 PM | Report abuse

Forget about intimidating the overfed, overpaid glamour media of NY and Washington and start paying attention to what really matrters! Watch how many investment bankers head for Dubai, Shanghai and Delhi. American corporations are already positioning themselves for a move toward the money (not surprisingly, Haliburton has already gone while the rest of the energy crowd just waits to flip the light switch) and American dominance as THE capital raising marketplace will fade even more quickly than has the attraction of holding our debt. It does no good to blame Mr. and Mrs. Walmart/Sixpack. Where's our mandatory national savings program? So many good things could come out of our leadership but all we see is cheap shot after cheap shot and the absence by both candidates of serious issue discussion. Naturally, the press is more concerned about meeting corporate profit/expense numbers than giving us real news. We will be lucky to be a third rate power in twenty years, so pack your bags, boys and girls, the action's headed elsewhere.

Posted by: awenshok'08 | September 23, 2008 2:11 PM | Report abuse

How much are some of the commenters here paid for their services?

Posted by: Roger | September 23, 2008 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Hey KicktheThugsOut, I agree with you a lot. In fact, I long for more unbiased, transparent, fact based reporting. However, it's boring and in an entertainment society like ours it doesn't fly. But let's say we get a break for a moment or two. I'd like to add a few other comparisons I'd like to see.
*List actual leadership/management/executive/etc. experience and accomplishments for all 4 candidates. Facts only. Being a POW or a Community Organizer is not an accomplishment, neither is giving birth, being a hockey mom, calling yourself blue collar or their friend or being a gaffe machine.
*amount of personal wealth and contributions received directly or non-directly from special interest groups, earmarks, gov't extras, etc., and have them seperated into related groups. (i.e. money obtained via fannie mae & freddie mac).
*Being legislature heavy, actual voting records on bills while in office (though only 3 truly qualify.)

Posted by: Guardian1 | September 23, 2008 2:12 PM | Report abuse

To the biased media and the Hollywood left, America is getting tired of all the hate! Keep it up and watch McCain/palin win in a landslide!... have a nice day.

Posted by: Tim NC | September 23, 2008 2:16 PM | Report abuse

Look, Obama had been raked over the coals by the Press more than once in the primaries and now during the election. They have reported on his religious faith and some media reports called him a Muslim, even though we all know he's obviously not a Muslim. In reporting on McCain, the media has been less tough, especially Fox news. But the reality is McCain is such an incompetent, he often reveals his stupidity and who he really is, and what it would be like to have him lead our country. Just the other night during an interview with 60 minutes, he was informed that the vast majority of Americans do not support a continuance of the Iraq war. What did McCain say..."well the American people are wrong". This comment, a complete disregard on the part of McCain for what most Americans think and a demonstration of the same Bush leadership style that has polarized this country for 8 years, should have been reported by the Media. McCain gets his share of breaks.

Posted by: Aycee | September 23, 2008 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Pointing out falsehoods and mistakes one would would be honorable if it did the same thing on the other side. For the last 20 years I have watched the news and I have noticed a very much left leaning to most of the news broadcast or print or internet.

Posted by: Curly | September 23, 2008 2:22 PM | Report abuse

During the course of Reading every single one of the posts, I found something very interesting happening. I found myself reading the articles that I agreed with and ignoring the ones that I disagreed with....So I actually started to read posts that supported the other point of view...I still didn't agree with most of them but there were very valid points being expressed......I'm not going to say who I support but I will say this. the news media is not entirely at fault, because like myself we will mostly only read what we believe...hence the media reports what they think we will read most.....Regardless of whether they tell the story from my point of view or not their chief is still to tell the truth. The same goes for our political candidates....I would rather vote for someone who believes differently than I do as long as he seems forthright and honest....Like the candidate of my choice I tend to support media who's aim is more altruistic, regardless of whether I agree with them or not....At the end of the day we all need to do a better job of vetting what we read and listen to....because I guarantee you that those who complain about "liberal media" mainly listen to conservative viewpoints and those who complain about the FOX news of the world tend to listen to media who cater to their thoughts.....the problem with America and media is the same....WE ARE and WILL ALWAYS BE DIVIDED in TWO. And nothing can change that.....

Posted by: canada | September 23, 2008 2:26 PM | Report abuse

An educated, informed electorate is the enemy of Republicanism, whereas willfully ignorant jingoism is its friend.
Thankyou, this is something I have believed for quit a while. It's a scary thing but infact true in my opinion.

Posted by: tejb | September 23, 2008 2:27 PM | Report abuse

McCain and his surrogates are abiding by the age-old adage: When the facts aren't on your side, attack the fact bringer. The facts aren't on McCain's side so make smear/intimidate the truth sayers.

It's just that simple.

Getting the unwashed masses to believe untruths and vote against their own best interests by roiling their generalized, personal discontents and then giving it a specific focus outside themselves (preferably to someone or some thing distinctly "other" than themselves) has worked spectacularly well for the Republicans for the last 8 years, so why not now? And facts be damned...

Posted by: Carmen Cameron | September 23, 2008 2:28 PM | Report abuse

But the bigger question is: were those "40" Obama stories puff pieces, or hit pieces?

Posted by: K-Romulus | September 23, 2008 2:35 PM | Report abuse

Who you trying to kid? The Washington Post and it's kissing cousin the NYT's...lost the last of their professional integrity long ago.

I am a "bottom line" kind of guy. To be lobbied usually means money changed hands via campaign contributions. Check out who received the most campaign funds from those at the GSE's and you will know who has been lobbied. In this case Obama easily wins and McCain isn't even close.

Now lets take it a step further...earmarks are what campaign contributions buy. So ask..which candidate has provided the most earmarks? Again Obama wins and McCain once again, isn't even close.

Knowing this is public information, to try and make McCain the owner of Obama's typical...and probably why the WP and NYT's stock has lost about 40% of its value. You see people can't control your bias, but they sure can control their stock ownership.

Posted by: dan | September 23, 2008 2:36 PM | Report abuse

The funny thing is, and I am a Democrat, the press may seem to be left leaning, because the truth about the Republican lead government is so BAD. Therefore, when the truth is stated, it appears to be left leaning. That's all, thank you for reading this.

Posted by: Ohio | September 23, 2008 2:40 PM | Report abuse

Did Mr. Schmidt also "report" that Mr. McCain was a POW for 5 years and that Ms. Palin is a woman, mother, "reformer" and moose skinner?
Give me a break!
The Republican mantra - say it often enough and it's true!

Posted by: TWM | September 23, 2008 2:47 PM | Report abuse

McCain has gone from a maverick to a bully. He blames the democrats to be preaching socialism. So far this campaign season I've seen him bully the press, prevented Sarah Palin from communicating with the press or even opening her mouth without permission from him. He is more of a dictator than anything else. It is either his way or the highway. I haven't seen any other presidential candidate go to the extend McCain has gone to suppress the freedom of the press in this country.

McCain is no presidential material.

Posted by: Billy | September 23, 2008 2:50 PM | Report abuse

Okay, Obama's A Left Wing Puppet, since you asked, I'll give it a shot... (be kind while grading me. Remember, I only possess the "imbecilic logic of the left")

Why else would we see at this stage of the game why would we see
1) the least experienced candidate in more than 100 years

Isn't Obama the least experienced candidate since.... Abraham Lincoln? How'd he do?

2) a candidate who processes the most liberal voting record out of 100 Senators

After eight years of neoconservative voting records, I'm thinking a good deal of America is ready to give this "liberal" thing a try.

3) a candidate who has the most unscrupulous group of racists, anti American associates imaginable

I'm unsure who this group of racist, anti-American associates are. If you're referring to Wright, Ayers, Rezko, et al, it's a stretch to call them associates. How about acquaintances? But if you prefer associates, in the interest of accuracy, we should at least describe them as former associates - not even the conspiracy theorists out there think that these people are playing a part in the Obama campaign. But if you insist on playing the guilt-by-association game, why don't you try Five Degrees of Separation with John McCain.

4) a candidate who has had his hand in the pocket of Fannie/Freddie to the tune of $150K (only second to Dodd @ $165K)

Obama raised $65 million dollars during August alone. What impact is $165 K going to have on his policy making? Again, do you want to play the guilt by association game? Try looking through the donation docket of any serious candidate. (I'll try to explain the way the game works, but it might be a strain on my imbecilic left wing logic.) Obama's a politician. Politician's need money to win and therefore are not in the habit of turning down donations. If this disqualifies someone from being President, I'm not sure who's name will be on the ballot come November.

5) A candidate who has changed his position to match his opponent at every turn.

Obama hasn't been the one changing his tune lately. In fact, it's his opponent who needs to "clarify" his position-of-the-moment lately. George Will even said so. And we can believe him, right? I mean, he doesn't even work for the New York Times!

Posted by: todd | September 23, 2008 2:58 PM | Report abuse

This entire discussion is STUPID. Regardless of any complaints from the GOP, the best, and only necessary defense against criticism of reporting is if it's TRUE. It appears the Times' piece meets that standard.
However, Kurtz, who claims to be a journalist, is so in the tank for McCain that his article covers only Schmidt's objections, without telling the reader if the charge is true. What a disappointment.
When will the national press stop typing Republican talking points and offering them to us as reportage?

Posted by: Bajagirl | September 23, 2008 2:59 PM | Report abuse

Schmidt is a flipping idiot. Anyone who supports these GOP clowns needs to have their head checked.

They use words like "deference" and shield themselves from examination and transparency. These are not words and actions of folks interested in democracy. They are words and actions of autocrats.

Country First: Obama/Biden '08.

Posted by: William J. | September 23, 2008 3:00 PM | Report abuse

Rovian/Swift Boat politics... the type McCain is employing.. does not care if the press is cowered. It does not matter if they are or not.. The statements are made so they can be aired over and over by the Republican Propaganda Media... it gets to the Republican base and riles them up..

Think about it.. Polls have shown that 68% of Republicans do not believe in evolution- so if you tell ignorant people ignorant lies they will believe them.. People who get their "news" from Fox don't read the New York Times, or any other journalistically ethical publication... Most of them are illiterate..

Posted by: eldeppnyc | September 23, 2008 3:03 PM | Report abuse

E.J. Dionne... defending the New York Times! Wow, what a BIG surprise. Good job EJ getting Ben Smith of Politico to fact check Schmidt. That is like Dick Cheney getting Karl Rove to fact check Dan Rather. Next time hoss get a non-partisan to do your fact checking.

Schmidt hit the nail on the head on this one. The New York Times, like almost the entire MSM, is doing everything in its collective power to sweep Barry O into the White House.

The only problem is that the American Public is not dumb - they can easily see through these shenanigans. The only thing these "news" people have accomplished is to bring to light how incredibly desperate they are to disseminate misinformation and their biased views to gain a political end. What an incredibly sad person Dionne must be.

I remember the day when Journalists earned their press cards through thorough, competent, un-biased reporting of news. They used to build the stories they wrote around those real little things known as FACTS. Now they resort to inuendo. Rumors.

E.J. Dionne and his ilk have gotten so bitter over their hatred of anything Bush (Republican) that they have sold their souls for the whole world to see.

Posted by: bryancoleman | September 23, 2008 3:04 PM | Report abuse

First, the New York Times is the most respected newspaper in the WORLD.

Second, why are the right-wing pundits ever submitted to this level of scrutiny. Does Rush Limbaugh present both sides of every arguement? Does Hannity?

And Manolet, Manolet, former Hillary supporter now supporter of McCain/Palin. The logic here. Let me carry it to its logical conclusion.

Hillary lost the nomination. I guess I will vote for McCain.

The drugstore is out of aspirin. I guess I will take some heroin.

The brain surgeon is not available. I guess I will just have this alcoholic ex-paramedic operate on my tumor.

Posted by: MarkinNY | September 23, 2008 3:15 PM | Report abuse

Schmidt is right.

Posted by: Independent Agrarian | September 23, 2008 3:17 PM | Report abuse

to byrancoleman....Maybe not all of the Americam people are dumb but alot of us are...They did vote for Bush twice...and I promise you if he was on the ticket again....the right wing would find a way to justify voting for him again........

Posted by: canada | September 23, 2008 3:21 PM | Report abuse

It's times like these that I really miss Tim Russert....Probably the only news man who was really interested in revealing the truth.....I would have loved to see hime moderate the upcoming debates....

Posted by: dd | September 23, 2008 3:24 PM | Report abuse

Voice 2 - If you wanted to know about Obama's life then you should have been paying attention to the primaries. Day afer day, week after week the media went on and on about Wright and every other little knook and cranny about Obama's life. He was eight when Ayers was out bombing places and has served on some kind of community commitee with Ayers now that Ayers has been a college professor for the last several decades. That is the extent of his involvement. Despite a ton of investigations and a lengthy court trial there has never been any evidence linking Obama with Rezko. Unlike McCain and his Keating 5 buddies. He was born in Hawaii and raised in several places including a short stint in Indonesia of all places. But he is not a Muslim. He had some trouble in his youth with drugs but took a stand and went on to become a Harvard grad. In fact an outstanding one. He worked in communities trying to help others. He then went on to serve in the Illinois state senate. Now he is a senator from Illinois. He has supported a good deal of legislation involving ethics, nuclear proliferation, and making the government transparent by putting the Congress's business on the Internet just to name a few. His beliefs are mostly Democratic but he did support Fisa and a few other more conservative pieces of legislation. He supports gun ownership but would like to see something done about crime in cities like ensuring all guns can be traced back to their owners. I think he is against automatic weapons but unless you are planning to go to war with someone I honestly do not see why these weapons should not be controlled. They certainly are not intended for any kind of hunting I know of. He has a pretty good economic plan that is centered around a tax break for the middle class. He wants to make a serious effort at finding alternative sources of fuels that are renewable while still supporting drilling, nuclear in a safe way, clean coal, wind, solar, and all other sources. He appears to have a pretty good grip on foreign policy and I have great faith that he will never lead us into a war of choice with lies like this guy Bush has done. Anyway I hope this helps some with getting to know your blind date.

Posted by: Jake | September 23, 2008 3:31 PM | Report abuse

McCain is the oldest and most vainglorious candidate in history -- an egomaniac who will say or do anything to advance his favorite cause, himself. The press cannot vet him enough.

Posted by: mnjam | September 23, 2008 3:35 PM | Report abuse

Most of us in America live under the illusion that having an opinion, no matter how idiotic it might be, is the same as actually knowing something about a subject. So everyone who doesn't affirm our absurd, self-serving, limited view of the world is either pursuing an agenda, or is a hired gun, or is an imbecile of some kind. You hear it from both sides of the political spectrum, but I have to say especially from Republicans, who take every criticism as a sign of bias, conspiracy, collusion, and plotting... and whose behavior in the campaign so far has been close to reprehensible.

Posted by: Stefan | September 23, 2008 3:57 PM | Report abuse

Would it have been 'bias' for Redskins supporters to complain that there were more negative stories about them in the media last year than about the Patriots? Not hardly. Similarly, there are more negative stories about McCain/Palin than about Obama/Biden due to the fact that there are many more negatives to McCain/Palin than to Obama/Biden.

Posted by: Jack Bartram | September 23, 2008 4:10 PM | Report abuse

The New York Times tilts left. The FOX network slants right. Rush Limbaugh trumpets from the far right, Rachel Madow from the far left. The Internet covers every flavor in between.

Americans have access to more information than ever about candidates. For McCain to attack a single news source if of course laughable when he has FOX news in his corner running a 24 hour hack job on Obama.

If the media had any guts they would respond by just not covering McCain/Palin at all until they actually show some interest in answering questions instead of publishing talking points. I used to love seeing interviews with John McCain and liked how he seemed to be a true independent thinker. Now that seems like some kinda pipe dream. The Straight-Talk Express has become the Straight Talking-Point Express and it comes across every bit a phony as it sounds.

Posted by: Cal | September 23, 2008 4:17 PM | Report abuse

After years of complete republican failure - even reality has a liberal bias.

What should we expect after utter failure ?

John McCain - your party deserves to lose - and lose bad.

Posted by: PulSamsara | September 23, 2008 4:26 PM | Report abuse

Something biased is not inherently false. If I were to present you, as I feel the media often does, with the honest truth on a candidate, but not the other, that would not diminish the factuality of what I say. The truth is out there, easily accessible and a matter of public record. If someone is "misled" by the "biased" media, it is due to an unwillingness to check the information for themselves.

Posted by: sleepy | September 23, 2008 4:40 PM | Report abuse

Hey ... when you have no message and you'd rather lose your honor rather than lose an election, LYING becomes second nature. It only hurts a little at the beginning ... so it's one step from that to "blame the media" and give Johnnie boy a reason to stay away from anyone asking a real question. And he trots his VP to New York today to get foreign policy experience, I am not making this up, by shaking hands .... he could have saved time -- see this hilarious video John McCain,no way, no how:

Posted by: Did I mention I'm a LIAR??? | September 23, 2008 4:43 PM | Report abuse

How quickly we forget how the media chewed up Obama with every tidbit about Rev. Wright.

Posted by: RueDee | September 23, 2008 5:12 PM | Report abuse

McCain's camp is trying to intimidate MSM to ensure it gets a positive slant in the upcoming McCain\Obama debate this Friday. Quite clever actually!

Posted by: Oscar | September 23, 2008 5:18 PM | Report abuse

The McCain-Palin campaign tactic of media intimidation has been very successful. Since August 30th, any mention of Palin not scripted to McPalin’s talking points resulted in a full-force attack on the media by the campaign: sexists; god-hating, immoral liberal press; anti-American mean spirited liberal journalists on a witch hunt. The mass media is intimidated and backed off any substantial investigation into Palin political record, achievement claims, and political initiatives.

Had it not been for the perseverance of bloggers who daringly refused to genuflect before the McPalin-Bush political machine, much of what we now know about Palin’s political record and claims—many outright lies--would never had come to light. Bloggers fact checked all of McPain claims and posted their findings. As the internet boiled over with blogger discourse on Palin, the mass media had to follow suit.

McPalin’s “No Talk Express” continues to stonewall the press—and the mass media meekly shrug their collective shoulders when they should be collectively boycott “The No Talk Express”.

Why should the mass media show up to cover Palin when they are met with total silence? Or worse, allow themselves to be manipulated by the campaign into chronicling Palin’s political makeover?

Palin’s debut on the “world stage” turn out to be a 29 second photo opt—with no questions of course. Certainly, if McPalin want silly photos of Palin with diplomatic leaders, let them pay for a professional photographer. Such silly “celebrity” photographs are worthless to the voting public and do not constitute political journalism. The media needs to focus on the candidates who take this election seriously--and willingly talk to the press.

Posted by: socalgal59 | September 23, 2008 5:20 PM | Report abuse

"Being a liberal is a gutless choice right :-)"

Posted by: RJ from NC

It's the right-wing macho folks who are terrified of terrorists, immigrants, Obama, colored folks of any sort, educated people, gays--and are willing to give up their rights to the Bushies and Cheneys of the nation to protect them, while the administration's cronies suck your wallets dry. But liberals fear less because knowledge is power, and ignorance begets fear. And you're a moron.

Posted by: edwcorey | September 23, 2008 5:38 PM | Report abuse

There is no defense for the medias utter nonsense and bias. Study after study by reputable organizations such as UCLA Political Science Dept. have shown time and again that there is a definite bias and polls prove it also.

Posted by: n8whit | September 23, 2008 5:48 PM | Report abuse

Mr.Dionne has always had a problem (what a bad week for Mr.Dionne) when facts are not aligned with his "stars", accurately referred to as left wing extremism. But then again, what are facts to Mr.Dionne when the "all the news that is 'biased and' fit to print" says so? Well independent thought is obviously absent with the "lemming", Mr. Dionne. Perhaps he can offer a fact and not some blather of irrelevance and unverifiable regurgitation of the king of "'unfit' to print". Talk about a "water boy of ignorance"...

Posted by: BradJ | September 23, 2008 5:50 PM | Report abuse

Steve Schmidt should be forced to wear a scarlet letter "R" so all who see him and hear his name will be reminded he nothing more than Karl Rove with a different name.
As Rove's protege', Schmidt's name should never be spoken unless it is referenced back to Rove. The public needs to long remember who brought us the terrible past 8 years.

That said--whew! I love the Times! The poor old addled brain, when given real food for thought, (such as Frank Rich, for one writes), it cries, "Ah! give me more of that good stuff." Unlike talking points, it is pure thought, and actually went through a human brain before being put into words. Wonderful!

Sure the times leans left. Liberal means, after all, taking different points of view into consideration. And as someone somewhere so aptly posted today, after 8 years of this nonsense, "even reality leans left."

Posted by: A Rove By Any Other Name | September 23, 2008 5:54 PM | Report abuse

You know, if John McCain had picked someone (a woman) who had a real record, I would agree with you. I don't generally agree with Sen Kay Bailey Hutchinson but at least she has credentials. If he had picked someone who could answer a straight question, I would agree with you. But she does not seem to be able to answer any question asked of her.
If you are just voting for McCain because Palin is on the ticket - and because Palin is a woman - then you would vote for anyone who had ovaries, irregardless of qualification. Hillary ASKED YOU to vote for Obama because his ideals are closer to his ideals. Obama has refused to comment on Sarah Palin because he is not running against her but McCain. I guess you think that's sexist too??? If she is going to be VP then she damn well should know more than she does. Otherwise, she is just a puppet and someone else will be controlling her strings. Her stance about quite a number of things is completely opposite your heroine Hillary. THINK BEFORE YOU ACT.

Posted by: GJKBEAR | September 23, 2008 6:09 PM | Report abuse

The major papers (and other media) have given Obama a free pass.

Obama's district is rife with out-of-control violence, poverty, housing problems. Yet not one major story on how life is for Obama's constituents or what he has done for them.

Obama's way out-of-the-mainstream religious beliefs and wacky Pastor were concealed by the msm until they emerged in March '08 becuase of FOX. Then they were forced to cover it, and the coverage largely consisted of excuses for Obama.

Obama's shady associates have received little to no coverage and no in-depth analysis of the extent of Obama's ties to any of them has been done.

Obama makes a statement on Pakistan that causes riots and a reaction for their President. This would have been first page news if it were caused by any other candidate. For Obama the major press covered for him with an eery silence.

The troubling emotions and conflicts with the truth that were revealed in Obama's book remain unexamined. (One tiny article - "Obama's Account Differs" appeared and was buried and scubbed by the NYT)

Obama's legislative record, missed votes, absenteeism from his subcommittee - none of these things have caused even a small amount of concern in the media.

The bias is readily apparent. It is of the same dishonest and unprofessional tone that characterized the race in 2000. The media decides who it likes (in 2000 Bush, in 2008) and tilts and slants and covers up for that candidate and it badgers and wheedles the candidates it does not (Gore in 2000 and Clinton/McCain in 2008).

The result will be the same. The jaded press chooses an equally jaded and bad candidate, big on phoniness and short on credentials, and the country loses.

Posted by: doublestandard | September 23, 2008 6:21 PM | Report abuse

We all ought to laugh when we hear McCain attack NYTimes. After all, the Times endorsed McCain as a Rep. candidate--and then Hillary, not Obama. Wonder if the editors rue those endorsements? McCain wasn't complaining then. I agree with the comment saying Obama is running against McCain, not Palin. The less said of Palin, the better. What a pathetic attempt to 'stir up' things, to appear to be the 'maverick' again. No one is buying that old line any more. She's no maverick, either, but a hack politico who will charm with a smile, then serve all her own interests, just as she has in Alaska. Transparently unready and not very smart.

Posted by: mbinKS | September 23, 2008 6:50 PM | Report abuse

Forget NYT, it will be dead soon:

Posted by: newsies_suck | September 23, 2008 6:57 PM | Report abuse

Why don't the Post and NY Times give Obama's ties to Fannie and Freddie equal time? He's the #2 recipient of Freddie and Fannie PAC and employee monies, so perhaps he's beholding to them. Morever, the Republicans proposed legislation in 2005 that would restrict the subprime mortgage portfolios held by Fannie and Freddie and other government enterprises. This legislation even passed the Senate Banking Committee, but the bill did not become law because the Democrats, including Obama, opposed it on a party-line vote. By the way, McCain was one of the 3 co-sponsors of this bill, which would have helped avert this current crisis.

Posted by: judithod | September 23, 2008 7:01 PM | Report abuse

A simple Thank You, EJ. The NYTimes is my newspaper of choice and the best in circulation today. But I read it, not because it is perceived as a "liberal" paper. The simple fact that I occasionally get as infuriated with it as I do with FOX news is testament to the fact that they try to be as factual as possible, and don't please all of the people all of the time. I don't think they want to, or even try to. Amazingly, because of erroneous perceptions, the Times is picked on a lot and sometimes becomes the story itself.

The political side - the GOP or Democratic complaints - has been around since forever, and will continue. McCain's advisors know what's going on; they have brought everything on themselves with the lies and distortions. No self-respecting organization with allow themselves to be intimidated - although I sometimes fear that they will soft-pedal a story to maintain the peace.

Posted by: jblee | September 23, 2008 8:00 PM | Report abuse

Big surprise that the opinion of this Washington Post writer is at odds with scientific polls of the vast majority of the US public when it comes to media impartiality.

Posted by: Jesse | September 23, 2008 8:18 PM | Report abuse

I think that during this political period the 'Times should be forced to end each article with, "This advertisement for Barack Obama paid for by the fools who buy this rag."

Posted by: Brian | September 23, 2008 9:25 PM | Report abuse

judihod checkd the fannie mae/freddie mac issue with contributions to Obama. Fact is, the monies were from their employees. They also showed while Obama was 2nd to Dodd, McCain received over $100,000 from the directors, chairman and other execs. So only one side was given by McCain. And which is more damaging, the monies from higher ups raises more of a flag. So another half-truth for McCain and some people are buying it without checking it out for themselves. Let us think for ourselves.

Posted by: justthefacts | September 23, 2008 9:26 PM | Report abuse

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Posted by: ламинат | September 23, 2008 9:31 PM | Report abuse

Except that, you know, Dionne, what the McCain guy said WAS TRUE. The New York Times IS a partisan paper. Neither the Times nor the Post calls Obama out on anything because basically, they are backing Obama. When you say "independent journalism," what you really mean to say is attack McCain and/or Republicans. Don't give us your baloney about the Times and the Post being impartial observers because nobody believes it. Also, that Kurtz article the other day saying Obama had no connections to Chicago democratic machine corruption was a joke. That was another perfect example of how some people in the media are trying to pull the wool over voters' eyes.

Posted by: ttj | September 23, 2008 9:53 PM | Report abuse

I'm glad Mr. Burton provided his list of 40 headlines since Jan 2007 to rebut the McCain camp. It's interesting, though, that Mr. Dionne accepts the Obama's response at face value, a "well, so there."

A simple archive listing of NYT headlines for McCain in Sept. 2008 ONLY (just this last month) reveals these:

McCain Seen as Less Likely To Bring Change, Poll Finds (9-18-2008)
In Spanish, McCain Criticizes Obama on Immigration (9-16-2008)
McCain Barbs Stirring Outcry As Distortions (9-13-2008)
McCain Calls for Limited U.S. Role in Schools (9-10-2008)
An Adviser Molds a Tighter, More Aggressive McCain Campaign (9-7-2008)
McCain Sounds His Theme As a Fight For Change (9-5-08)
Old Friends in the Media See a New Side of McCain (9-4-08)
McCain Set to Make Iraq Gains a Chief Theme of His Run (9-3-08)
Palin Disclosures Spotlight McCain's Screening Process (9-2-08)
Response to Storm Shows Changes in McCain Campaign (9-1-08)
McCain Laboring To Hit Right Note On the Economy (9-17-08)
Study Disputes McCain Figures (9-17--08)
McCain Seen as Less Likely to Bring Change, Poll Finds (9-19-08)
Obama Attacks McCain in a Bid to Attract Hispanic Voters (9-19-08)
The New McCain: More Aggressive and Scripted on the Campaign Trail (9-19-08)
McCain Tries to Link Obama to Financial Crisis (9-20-08)
McCain's Camp Tests Fund-Raising Limits (9-20-08)
In Land of Captivity, Interest in McCain Is Mixed (9-20-08)
Obama Criticizes McCain on Social Security (9-21-2008)
Loan Titans Paid McCain Adviser Nearly $2 Million (9-22-08)

Of Mr. Burton's 40 Obama headlines since January-2007, these are the ones for just Sept. 2008, oh heck, let's throw in August, too:

Delicate Obama Path on Class and Race Preferences [New York Times, 8/3/08]
Big Donors, Too, Have Seats at Obama Fundraising Table [New York Times, 8/6/08]
Is Obama the End of Black Politics? [New York Times, 8/10/08]
Obama’s 2003 Stand on Abortion Draws New Criticism in 2008 [New York Times, 8/20/08]
Obama Aides Defend Bank’s Pay to Biden Son [New York Times, 8/25/08]
Once a Convention Outsider, Obama Navigated a Path to the Marquee [New York Times, 8/27/08]
Obama Looks to Lessons From Chicago in His National Education Plan [New York Times, 9/10/08]

Interesting differences in headline content and style, no? Please go ahead and read the stories, too. It's quite funny, actually.

BTW, let's compare Biden and Palin, too.

Last 3 months, total headline hits for Biden equal 19, here's a few:

Biden's Record on Race Is Scuffed by 3 Episodes
Campaign Says Biden Son Dropped Lobbying Clients
Biden Releases Tax Returns, In Part to Pressure Rivals
As a Matter of Faith, Biden Says Life Begins at Conception
Biden Opens New Phase With Attack On McCain
The Myth of Biden v. Bork
Jill Biden Heads Toward Life in the Spotlight
Tasks for Biden This Fall: Travel and Attack McCain
Biden Book Is a Hit
Obama Aides Defend Bank's Pay to Biden Son
Obama Chooses Biden as Running Mate
Obama Selects Biden, Adding Foreign Expertise To Ticket
Obama Chooses Biden as Running Mate
A Senate Stalwart Who Bounced Back
As Running Mate, Biden Offers Foreign Policy Heft but an Insider Image

Palin has a total of 59 (all starting at the end of August). Here's some of her headlines:

Palin Gets Women's Attention, Not Necessarily Their Support (August 31, 2008)
Palin's Teen Daughter Is Pregnant New G.O.P. Tumult (September 2, 2008)
Palin Daughter's Pregnancy Interrupts G.O.P. Convention Script (September 2,2008)
Palin Disclosures Spotlight McCain's Screening Process (September 2, 2008)
With Palin, Special Needs Get Spotlight (September 3, 2008)
Palin Start: Politics Not as Usual (September 3, 2008)
Easiest Task for Palin May Have Been Speech (September 4, 2008)
Ending a Conspicuous Silence, Palin Confidently Makes Her Own Case (September 4, 2008)
On Center Stage, Palin Electrifies Convention (September 4, 2008)
Sarah Palin's Speech: The Sparks Flew (September 5, 2008)
In Wasilla, Alaska, Friends of Palin Tune In to the Best Show in Town (September 5, 2008)
Alaska Lawmakers to Seek Subpoenas in Palin Inquiry (September 6, 2008)
In Palin's Worship and Politics, A Call to Follow the Will of God (September 6, 2008)
The Scrutiny of Sarah Palin (September 7, 2008)
Parents of Special-Needs Children Divided Over Palin's Promise to Help (September 7, 2008)
Readers See Bias in Us Weekly's Take on Sarah Palin (September 8, 2008)
Clinton Stumps for Obama, But With Little Fire at Palin (September 9, 2008)
Palin Aides Defend Billing State for Time at Home (September 10, 2008)
Squad of G.O.P. Aides Prepares Palin for Interviews (September 11, 2008)
Palin's Pipeline Is Years From Being a Reality (September 11, 2008)
In First Big Interview, Palin Says 'I'm Ready' for the Job (September 12, 2008)
Working Mother Questions 'Irrelevant,' Palin Says (September 13, 2008)
Alaska Lawmakers Vote To Subpoena Todd Palin (September 13, 2008)
Once Elected, Palin Hired Friends and Lashed Foes (September 14, 2008)
The Buzz About Palin Started Here (September 14, 2008)
Active Role for Palin's Husband in Alaska Government (September 14, 2008)
Palin Plans To Visit U.N. And Join Protest of Iran (September 18, 2008)
Palin Invitation Rescinded (September 19, 2008)
Palin Will Meet With Kissinger and Foreign Leaders (September 22, 2008)

Posted by: Kristen | September 23, 2008 10:04 PM | Report abuse

"Over and over, McCain supporters offer nothing but invective. No facts. No proof. The NYTimes has a solid record of fact-checking..."

Posted by: cturtle1 |


Cturtle1, I guess you're not old enough to remember the NYT's stories about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq or those Jayson Blair stories....The NYT was shown to be hugely fallible in its reporting and "fact checking".

Beyond that, does it occur to you that some of the "facts" you are calling facts might be "versions of the truth" spun for political purposes? The media has gone to great lengths to attack McCain and Palin but has refused to seriously examine Obama's real record. I believe this will change shortly, however.

Posted by: ttj | September 23, 2008 10:37 PM | Report abuse

"I have tried to post my moderate political opinion on the NYTimes blog many times and unless it's pro-Obama it doesn't get published."

maybe , just maybe , your a poor writer ?

Posted by: ripley | September 23, 2008 11:12 PM | Report abuse

Well, when I saw them refuse to cover Palin today without access, I thought that maybe, finally, they had overplayed their hand in the media intimidation game. So then McBush "gave in", the media "relented"....... and they got....campaign pix with no questions, no interviews, no substance....haha suckers

When Gail Collins complained about being kept behind the curtain of the plane with no access to the candidate, I told her to get off the plane. Its the only thing that's going to work.

People keep calling Bush stupid, but they're getting everything they wanted - unrestricted and unmonitored access to the markets, and a press that's still playing by their rules instead of actually conducting investigative reporting. We're the suckers

Posted by: palin | September 23, 2008 11:20 PM | Report abuse

I have put together the developments in the Rick Davis scandal in a timeline, complete with the racist John McCain ad that started it all off.

You can check out the ad, and story, at:

Posted by: scootmandubious | September 23, 2008 11:28 PM | Report abuse

Check out his rise to glory below:

Obama 1996 - 2000
Senator Obama: promoted to Senior Lecturer in constitutional law at the University of Chicago Law School. Elected to the Illinois Senate. Sponsored more than 800 bills. In 2000, lost a Democratic primary run for the U.S. House of Representatives to four-term incumbent Bobby Rush by a margin of two to one.

What mattered was that, beginning on Jan. 2, 1996, his campaigners began challenging thousands of petition signatures the other candidates in the race had submitted in order to appear on the ballot. Thus Mr. Obama would win his state Senate seat, months before a single vote was cast. Note that when he finished he was the ONLY democrat on the ballot. Republican candidate had to step aside for political reasons.

The 800 bills he ALLEDGEDLY sponsored were actually submitted by other democrats and all OBAMA did was date and stamp. He voted present 130 times on bills that would require him to step out of the box. Gained a reputation that the ‘then’ governor would make him a United States Senator.

2001 - 2004
Obama: reelected in 2002 and became chairman of the Illinois Senate's Health and Human Services Committee.
Initially the committee was looking at Health Care for all residents of Illinois. After accepting funding from insurance lobbyists he insured that universal healthcare became merely a policy goal instead of state policy, Basically learned how to again use his power to benefit himself at the expense of doing what was right for the residents of Illinois.

Publicly spoke out against the invasion of Iraq BEFORE the congressional authorization in 2002, and then again before the actual invasion in 2003. This was a given speech that sounded great but was actually a speech that was critical of the war BECAUSE it was distracting from the real issue regarding the black community in the United States. (Note he was given ORDERS by one of his Wealthy Supporters in Chicago to SPEAK OUT AGAINST THE WAR. Being a good Chicago Politiocian, he naturally followed the orders and took credit for speaking out.. but not on his own.)

Wrote and delivered the keynote address at the 2004 Democratic National Convention.
The Black Elite in the DNC decided along with the good ole boys… that to put a Democrat President in the White House in 2008 that they needed to attract the black vote… and that a Black Harvard Lawyer named Obama was the one that they needed. He was seen as an upcoming star because he won the Illinois US Senate Seat. (See the real facts of how he won by such a large number.) No one knew the Republican Candidate)

November 2004: elected to the US Senate, receiving over 3.5 million votes, more than 70% of total.

Now this is an interesting election even by Chicago standards. Seems that the front runner (Hull) mysteriously become involved in a domestic abuse trial and withdrew his name from the race. (Sounds like the Chicago Political Machine may have dropped a dime on Blair.) So Obama had a cake walk to get the democratic nomination for the U.S. Senate Seat. (Reminds me of how he won his State Senate seat by having his legal team disqualify his opponent’s signature petitions. At the same time Jack Ryan won the Republican Nomination, but announced his withdrawal from the race — four days after the Chicago Tribune succeeded in persuading a California court to release previously-sealed child custody records containing embarrassing allegations by Ryan's ex-wife. Now how is that for being one LUCKY politician. Obama walked into the US Senate Seat, when the Republicans brought in the little known Keyes to run as a Republican. Now it looks like the Chicago Political Machine along with Ayers, Jackson, Rezko Wright and the rich and wealthy Black community in Chicago loaded the deck in Obama’s favor.

Also note that for a 'white middle-class individual to be considered for entrance into Harvard' they would have to be number one in their High School class. Be the top student at Occidental just to get into COLUMBIA, and the odds of them getting into HARVARD LAW school ARE SO GREAT.. they probably would win the lottery first.

Yet Obama has us believe (on FAITH) that he performed so brilliantly that he (had a 'B' average in High School) performed so brilliantly at Occidental, that he got into Columbia, and that he EARNED a slot into Harvard Law School. Then he and HARVARD expect us to believe that he PERFORMED SO BRILLIANTLY ACADEMICALLY that he EARNED his right to be EDITOR of THE HARVARD LAW REVIEW. (Now I challenge the Obama Campaign and any supporter to valid that he was the BEST CANDIDATE excluding the fact that he was BLACK instead of BI-RACIAL.)

Amazing that there are no thesis papers, no legal briefs, no academic records, no scholarships received, no national test scores, no IQ scores, no legal briefs from his teaching in Chicago, or ANY LEGAL writings that was required of Editors of the Review... UNTIL Obama was selected.
I suspect that he received 'special' grants, scholarships, academic treatment not because he was brilliant... but because of the fact that these institutions... needed to promote black scholars at the expense of better qualified female, and white male candidates. ( I would hope that somewhere, someplace there would be documentation that would prove me wrong. )

And the amazing thing is... the MSM does not question any of this.

Shame on the MSM and shame on the Obama Supporters that BELIEVE in his Lies.

Remember he is spending over 600 million of YOUR dollars to BUY each and every American Vote that he recieves. Amazing to think that you are being BOUGHT and selling out OUR Country to the RICH AND POWERFUL.

Posted by: Bob Miller | September 23, 2008 11:53 PM | Report abuse

The press should initiate a blackout of all McCain/Palin events until she gives a press conference.

Who cares if she meets with other Republicans for photo ops? She is all hat, no cattle. I heard her respond to questions twice and on both occassions she seemed confused and her knowledge superficial and limited. Are we supposed to vote blindly for J/P?

Not this time.
Republicans for Obama 08

Posted by: storeyy | September 24, 2008 12:18 AM | Report abuse

Thank you Mr. Dionne! Americans just want the truth and the McCain camp (like everyone admits) keeps lying and smearing because that is the only way they can win. Pat Buchanan has said this a million times- including the past 2 days. That is their only strategy- to demonize Obama (who has never been investigated or done anything evil in his life) over anything they can think of.

The sad part is that the media has participated in the smearing of Barack Obama much to the McCain camps delight. It's only now that finally more are beginning to wake up. Thank you!

Posted by: Lisa | September 24, 2008 1:06 AM | Report abuse

Press bias stems from the different approaches to the press, towit: the Liberals see the media as a judge-a judge in a courtroom interrupts, asks questions, determines credibility, interprests the law. the Republicans see the media as a police officer-no cop, no stop.let them play the game, and the best team wins..

Posted by: Anonymous | September 24, 2008 1:40 AM | Report abuse

I've heard that the main qualification of Sarah is that she hasn't had an abortion.. People need to watch McCain closely. I think the man has early dementia. watch him closely. How would you like to have President Sarah??

Posted by: wally | September 24, 2008 1:53 AM | Report abuse

Steve Schmidt simply doesn't have the temperament to be a senior official with public speaking privileges on a national campaign. He has really spun himself out for the last 4 weeks.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 24, 2008 2:25 AM | Report abuse


This is not an independent media that has unmasked as grossly biased. Where is the real news?

Time to tell us about the real relationship with Bill Ayres ... no more cover ups.


Posted by: mdean | September 24, 2008 5:41 AM | Report abuse

E.J., I have great respect for you and most of the rest of the "Fourth Estate", but, no matter what the source, can we stop using the term "misstatement" and use the most appropriate word which is "lie"?

Pure and simple that's what is happening with the McCain campaign. With the Post/ABC poll out showing a 9 point Obama lead, the worst is yet to come.

No "rag" should be a "shill" for either candidate and neither the "Times", "Post" or most others have been, which is a lot more than I can say about some "broadcast media". Keep doing your job!

Posted by: Hildy Johnson | September 24, 2008 7:37 AM | Report abuse

The question becomes: Does McCain ever tell the truth about anything - even accidentally?

Posted by: dogberry | September 24, 2008 8:23 AM | Report abuse

I wanted to research this subject and write a paper. Your post what a thousand words would not. Nice job.

Posted by: Apply food stamp | September 24, 2008 8:33 AM | Report abuse

In response to: Stefan | September 23, 2008 9:21 AM

Thanks for the very valuable observation: "At some point in the process of becoming a compulsive liar, your wheels leave the runway of reality and you become airborne." I have a case before me - right now my ex-employer's two companies are busy producing "incriminating evidence" against me.

I would like to be able to personally contact you. It's such a rarity - somebody with (more) brains. Sorry, to others, no harm meant :).

Posted by: Ashot as in ashOUt | September 24, 2008 8:45 AM | Report abuse

If the McCain campaign is so upset with The Times and other media sources, then I think that the media should just play it safe and not a write a thing about McCain/Palin. Seriously, if all you get is criticism for sharing the facts, then cut the ties. It's like a toxic relationship, at some point, the relationship needs to end. As far as the campaign trail goes, just cover Obama/Biden and refer to the McCain camp as "the other guys" if need be.

Rick Davis had to raise a stink about the media, he's all about damage control. I think he knew the truth was going to come out this week about his Fannie Mae-Fannie Mac connection. It would make sense for him to claim that the media "lies" BEFORE his own little scandel came out. Now he can say, "See, there they go again telling more lies".

Posted by: C. Bellerose | September 24, 2008 8:46 AM | Report abuse

Maybe the writing would be less "liberal" if there was actually something important to report about McCain. He only offers regurgitated talking points over and over, and some of those happen to be untrue. So this is what he leaves the papers to report. The coverage would be more "fair" if McCain/Palin had anything "fair" to offer. Unfortunately, they offer nothing. At all.

Posted by: Crazydaze | September 24, 2008 9:07 AM | Report abuse

All repressive regimes run on control of information. The truth is their worst enemy.

We've seen this in the current administration for the past 8 years with the secrecy with which policy has been made and even who was involved in making that policy.

McCain is showing his hand about the type of president he will be. He takes liberties with the truth, changes his views to gain power and then criticizes the press for doing its own investigation into the truth. He shields Palin from the press so we can't find out how unqualified she really is. He derides the investigators that go to Alaska for troopergate in spite of the fact that Palin originally said "hold me accountable" but apparently shies away from that now that her vice presidency could be affected by the outcome of that investigation. After all this is the person who tried to have a librarian fired for not getting rid of the books Palin disapproved of and who many say has a hit list of those who have crossed her. does anyone really believe she didn't fire someone for not firing her ex-brother-in-law? The truth is the enemy of the McCain campaign and they will do anything to keep Americans from learning it.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 24, 2008 9:34 AM | Report abuse

I do believe that this is the year the media redeems itself from some of its deficiencies in previous years. Perhaps it is because it has become far better. So long as Dionne, Will, Brooks, Robinson, Matthews, Olbermann, Maddow, and so many others continue keeping the truth before us, voters are bound to make the right decision. I'm just sorry that we don't have Tim Russert here since I know he would be among the leaders of the charge towards honesty and integrity. History will give credit to the media of 2008 for putting out the word that is being stifled and withheld by the McCain campaign.

Posted by: formerrepublican | September 24, 2008 9:37 AM | Report abuse

It is a tried and true republican response to take the attention away from actual facts. This method of creating an alternate reality and smearing your opponent with the most underhanded vile no holds barred tactics were used by Lee Atwater to put Ragen in office, Bush senior and serving as a mentor to Carl rove who we know has taken this form of campaigning to a higher and very sophisticated level of slime and lies.
Any who doubts this please take the couple of minutes to google Lee Atwater
Republicans are lying to everyone, the middle class will go away the media will become concentrated to be a state run news agency. We all want the same thing—THE TRUTH so we may make a informed vote. No matter who you plan to vote for take some time and look so you can think for yourself.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 24, 2008 9:47 AM | Report abuse

Here is some of the truth the media left out...

The Media Echo Obama’s False Claim that McCain Lied about Sex Ed Bill
Many major news organizations accepted at face value Obama’s denial that he backed comprehensive sex education for kindergartners. Reporters should have read the actual text of the bill.

By Colleen Raezler
Culture and Media Institute
September 17, 2008

Did the media tell the truth about the sex ed bill Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama supported in the Illinois state Senate? Was the bill aimed at protecting kids from sexual predators, as he says? Or would it have extended "comprehensive" sex education to the kindergarten level, as GOP nominee John McCain says?

After McCain released a campaign ad asserting that Obama supported teaching "comprehensive" sex education to five-year-olds, many of Big Media’s biggest players not only accepted the Illinois senator’s explanation uncritically, they impugned McCain’s character with accusations of lying, deception and distortion.

Apparently, many of these reporters never read the actual text of SB 99, which proposed changes to the sex education sections of the Illinois School Code.

Obama’s campaign said SB 99 was written to guard young children against sexual predators. The term “sexual predator,” however, never appears in the document. Only 57 lines in the 14-page, 455-line document (a 19-line section repeated almost verbatim two more times) address “unwanted” and “nonconsensual sexual advances.” Even this section is aimed principally at resisting “peer pressure,” not child molesters, as Obama implies.

Here is the small portion of the bill that addresses nonconsensual sexual advances, the only part of the bill that could be construed as applying to sexual predators

The real content of the bill was not acknowledged by the Obama campaign. Instead, Obama spokesman Bill Burton responded to the McCain ad by saying, “It is shameful and downright perverse for the McCain campaign to use a bill that was written to protect young children from sexual predators as a recycled and discredited political attack against a father of two young girls” (emphasis added).

CMI found numerous examples of the media reporting, as fact, the language from the Obama campaign response:

September 10, MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow: “The legislation in question was not sponsored by Barack Obama. It never became law and it was actually designed to warn young children about sexual predators.” (Emphasis added.)
September 12, New York Times editorial: “The kindergarten ad flat out lies. …at most, kindergarteners were to be taught the dangers of sexual predators.”
September 12, PBS’s Judy Woodruff on NewsHour: “Obama supported a law to educate children on the dangers of sexual predators.” (Emphasis added.)
September 12, syndicated columnist Mark Shields on PBS NewsHour: “Obama voted for…a bill in the Illinois state legislature that would – for age-appropriate sex educations for youngsters taught to be – to warn them about adult sexual predators and what they could do to avoid and to discourage and to resist.” (Emphasis added.)
September 12, CNN’s Larry King during The Larry King Show: “…the quote about kindergartners is not teaching sex to kindergarten kids. It’s dealing with predators.” (Emphasis added.)
September 15, MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow: “Obama supported legislation to help keep kindergarteners safe from sexual predators, and turning that into some creepy, anti-sex ed ad, it’s not just a McCain lie, it is a prevarication miracle, totally unknowable through rational means.” (Emphasis added.)
On September 15, CNN’s Election Center and Anderson Cooper 360 both featured Viveca Novak of According to Novak, “The kind of thing he was interested in having kids at a young age learn about what was inappropriate sexual advances that might be made against them. (Emphasis added.)
CBS’s Bill Plante did a little better in his September 10 “reality check” to Evening News viewers, but he still bought into the “sexual predators” fig leaf: “The facts: the bill introduced in the Illinois legislature never became law. It called for non-mandatory sex education for grades K – 12 that was ‘age and developmentally appropriate.’ For kindergartners, that included, among other things, ‘how to say no to unwanted sexual advances.’ Obama did vote for the bill in committee, and he says he supports similar laws in other states. But he said the point was to help parents teach their children how to deal with sexual predators.” (Emphasis added.)

At the July 23, 2007 CNN/YouTube debate, Obama himself said the bill was aimed at protecting children from predators:

I’ve got a 9-year-old daughter and a 6-year-old daughter. And I want them to know if somebody is doing something wrong to them, encroaching on their privacy, that they should come talk to me or my wife. And we’ve had that conversation, but not every parent is going to have that conversation with their child, and I think it’s important that every child does, to make sure that they’re not subject to the sexual predators.

Byron York at National Review noted that a press release issued by groups who supported the 2003 bill in question, including the Illinois Planned Parenthood Council, “contained no mention of sexual predators or inappropriate touching.”

SB 99 never passed the Illinois Senate. Ralph Rivera, state lobbyist for Illinois Citizens for Life, told CMI, “If it was only ‘stranger danger,’ it would have blown through the Senate and passed.”

As Castellanos noted on Election Center, SB 99 included “standards in there [in] which 5-8 year-olds should be, you know, talking about body parts, lifestyles and what feels good and a lot of American think that that’s going too far. Now, you know, whether he intended it or not, that’s what he voted for and that’s fair game.”

Posted by: dragonfly777 | September 24, 2008 9:58 AM | Report abuse

McCain may be able to intimidate the press,

but he is not going to intimidate me! I am

voting for OBAMA!

Posted by: PUREDEMO | September 24, 2008 10:22 AM | Report abuse

from that liberal Washington Post no less.

Posted by: bill | September 24, 2008 10:30 AM | Report abuse

The New York Times is the idea mill for the Democrat party. The NYT passes on its ultra-liberal ideas to the Democrat party and it becomes platform. In return for this the NYT promotes liberal Democrats 110% and serves as the propaganda bureau for the party. This is very similar to the relationship the Moscow Times had with the Communist party of the old Soviet Union. The main difference being that the U.S.S.R. was a brutal dictatorship with very little freedom of press.

These facts are obvious and indisputable.

Is the fact that the NYT is slowly going bankrupt a result of its dishonest journalism???

Good question if I do say so myself.

Posted by: BattleGround | September 24, 2008 10:33 AM | Report abuse

Why would he think otherwise? Working the press by complaining about "liberal bias" is standard fare for Republican candidates. It has a long history of success. How dare you change the rules?

Posted by: Eric | September 24, 2008 10:38 AM | Report abuse

organisation - just reading the writers and colum. and even the bloggers one can see it - it solely for the dem campaign. That spells no OBJECTIVE JOURNALISM FOR THE rest of us. So what happened to freedom of a democracy if they allowed to practice such one-sided view especially in a national election which has aglobal impact. To promote and keep democracy alive, it is the onus of the media to see to it that they never fail to report the news with fairness and most significant UNBIAS REPORTING. And if they do then democracy will be dismantled with grave consequences.

Posted by: roseann | September 24, 2008 11:11 AM | Report abuse

It is absolutely unacceptable for any newspaper OR Media to show favouritism on people,place or thing at the expense of DEMOCRACY. The populist depends on the freedom of expression of the press for objective journalism and that is pivotal in securing AND SUSTAINING DEMOCRACY.

Posted by: roseann | September 24, 2008 11:25 AM | Report abuse

Wake up, you are NOT journalists any more, you are opinionists.People who don't share your opinions don't read your publications, as evidnevced by your sagging revenues.

Posted by: dfjlaw | September 24, 2008 11:29 AM | Report abuse

Oh wow - can u imagine ? Another Obama zombie defending the New York Times. The Times couldn't wait to run some anonymous adulterous story about McCain and a staffer awhile back, yet it sat on the John Edwards story for months. The New York Times- aka Obama rag- can only print glowing pieces on its ultra radical liberal favorites like the terrorist tainted, criminally tainted and racist tainted Obambi then trashes everyone else like Hillary and McCain-Palin. Rupert Murdoch please buy that rag and make a few heads roll. Signed-No longer a fan or buyer of the New York Times !!

Posted by: jimbo | September 24, 2008 11:34 AM | Report abuse

McCain only had a shot at winning this thing by capturing the independent vote. He unfortunately decided to take a hard right turn. He started by actively embracing Bush policies and abandoning some of own long held positions. He deciced to campaign dirty by taking on Rove operatives to run his campaign -- nasty ads, half-truths and downright lies. For myself, it was the Kindrgarten ad practically insinuated that Obama was a leering pedophile that completely turned me off on McCain -- a man I once admired. He chose Sarah Palin, a far right ideologuge, as his running mate. Now McCain is both shutting out the press, and whining about the press. The media people were his great friend not too long ago -- why he chooses to constantly criticize them and insult them is beyond me. Palin was interesting and new for a while, but she ain't going to carry him over the finish line -- only independents can do that and he isn't one of them, anymore.

Posted by: lennie | September 24, 2008 11:57 AM | Report abuse

Has anyone noticed how the wapo mirrors the nyt. they are in the tank for OSAMA and they don't try to hide it.The press stinks, and I don't blame Sarah from barring the cameras and most of the press from her meetings yesterday. They would have distorted what was said, and made fun of everything she said. It is a shame that the msm has stooped so low that networks and a lot of newspapers are losing their viewers by the droves.MSNBC is a good example.Chris says evertime osama speaks, a tingle runs up his leg, and for that remark, he has been demoted. If I had been in charge, he would have been fired for being so biased.

Posted by: elmerck | September 24, 2008 12:24 PM | Report abuse

Isn't it interesting that when the McCain campaign is called out for its chronic hypocrisy (as in the case of denying Davis' ties to Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac, while damning Obama for his connections to these failed companies), it reacts, not by producing evidence to the contrary, but by blasting the "Liberal Media" as "biased." Blaming the press has been a tactic used by Republicans for years, and it obviously has been honed to perfection by Karl Rove and his disciples, who are now in full control of the "straight talk express."

The idea that the nation's media are all "liberal," which is implied by the sweeping use of the phrase "Liberal Media," is such a myth as to be laughable. I would bet money that if you did a survey of all American newspapers, for example, you would find that a considerable majority of them would be classified "conservative." I know that is the case with the paper where I live (Albuquerque).

And when I drive through Texas, my home state, Rush Limbaugh (or some other arch conservative) is all you hear as you drive through town after town. So where is the "Liberal Media" there?

No, what we are seeing are the same old, tired tactics of laying down a smoke screen and try to obscure the facts, while attempting to divert attention by throwing mud at the opponent. Will it work yet again as it did in 2000 and 2004. For the nation's good, I hope not.

Posted by: Veritas | September 24, 2008 12:25 PM | Report abuse

I have to agree w/ some of the above criticism of the press re: letting Bush
off on WMD, Katrina, Iraq and Afghanistan, the billions he gave to GM for the fuel cell development, the lobbyist scandals, the oil rise, ... and lastly the financial melt down. I know u have to sell news to Repugnikans and Dummerkrats alike, but your lapse on the disgraceful handling of the presidency, not to mention Chaney's shadow government (not accountable as executive or legislative government) leaves you no credibility. The polling numbers u people report mean nothing as well, since half the numbers only come from people w/ land line phones.

Posted by: Team Whinning | September 24, 2008 12:37 PM | Report abuse

Based on the efforts of the New York Times and bolstered by your "view" of what happened. I have reluctanly come to the conclusion that you have become simply an entertainment medium. You prefer Obama merely because party change provides more fodder for your stories. Internet hits are more important to you than giving the public the facts it needs. Therefore, simply because of this article. I will be voting for McCain. You should be ashamed to call yourself a reporter. Go to the editorial section or whatever you want if you have lost the definition of what real reporting should be.

Posted by: FormerDemocrat | September 24, 2008 12:57 PM | Report abuse

I can only hope that people are finally getting wise to the Republicans' smug and cynical manipulation of public opinion. Lee Atwater, Roger Ailes, Karl Rove, and the rest of the soulless and despicable liars should have been tossed to the curb years ago. They have poisoned and sickened the discourse for far too long.

Posted by: s. johnston | September 24, 2008 1:17 PM | Report abuse

"I have tried to post my moderate political opinion on the NYTimes blog many times and unless it's pro-Obama it doesn't get published."

Have you considered the possibility that maybe your writing is just not good enough?

Posted by: Simon | September 24, 2008 1:49 PM | Report abuse

Posted by foreigner-
"I hate to disagree, but since not being involved in your elections, but with satellite coverage of all your media and ease of internet searches, complaints about the press are fully warranted. Your mainstream media by and large have fully been in the tank for Obama since the beginning and any uninterested party can see that as plainly as the nose on your face. His history making aspect of being the first African American has led your coverage from the start and experience and qualifications have been shortchanged because any attempt at scrutiny was labelled as the person being a bigot. The race card was played unfairly and the media went right along with it. Now McCain and Palin have nothing but poor press no matter what and the scrutiny of both fairly is laughable. Obama mistakes are excused away while McCain's ridiculed. The first 4 days of seemingly unendless trashing of Governor Palin was shameful. Unfortunately so many Americans are so polarized that objectivity has all but disappeared and no matter what is said, if it is not favorable, then people are called on it. I presume the press finds it more fun to ridicule on age than have been fair when discussing race, and for some reason want to be part of the history making aspect less they be left out. The media deserve every bit of criticism that gets hurled at them. They have become part of the strategy to get someone elected rather than report on those who should be charged with that task."

Wow. You should adjust your satellite dish.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 24, 2008 1:55 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: Billy
You must think everyone is ignorant, I have voted democrat for the last 20 years and this year I will not vote, this article as well as numerous others are trying to influence the election, are nation is doomed. The press is beyond arrogant and out of control, fools!

You are right. When the people who choose the leader of our country can't spell "our" - then our nation is doomed.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 24, 2008 2:11 PM | Report abuse

I don't want to rain on anyone's parade here but it is extremely hard to prosecute pedophiles if an eight year old can't say the word "penis" or "vagina" out loud as is the case with a lot of kids, particularly those raised in homes where sex isn't considered very nice if it is considered at all. I raised three boys and when one of them had a thankfully insignificant experience with a child predator we did not spend hours trying to figure out whether the jerk had wanted to touch his "winkie" or his "tally". Predators frequently avoid prosecution by claiming their young victims are coached, but a kid who is comfortable with the appropriate language rather than the euphemisms is more credible and, I think, less likely to be intimidated in the first place.

That is the rationale for the simple anatomy lessons that are included in some curriculumns, which all parents are welcome to opt out of.

Posted by: Pogge | September 24, 2008 2:51 PM | Report abuse

The mainstream media have gone over the line and are now straight out propagandists for the Obama campaign. While they have been liberal and blinkered in their worldview for decades, in 2007-08 for the first time, the major media are consciously covering for one candidate for president and consciously knifing the other. This is no longer journalism — it is simply propaganda. (The American left-wing version of the Volkischer Beobachter cannot be far behind.) And as a result, we are less than seven weeks away from possibly electing a president who has not been thoroughly and even half way honestly presented to the country by our watchdogs — the press.

The image of Barack Obama that the press has presented is not a fair approximation of the real man. They have consciously ignored whole years in his life, and showed a lack of curiosity about such gaps that bespeaks a lack of journalistic instinct. Thus, the public image of Mr. Obama is of a "Man who never was." I take that phrase from a 1956 movie about a real life WWII British intelligence operation to trick the Germans into thinking the Allies were going to invade Greece, rather than Italy, in 1943. Operation "Mincemeat" involved the acquisition of a human corpse dressed as a Maj. William Martin, R.M. and put into the sea near Spain. Attached to the corpse was a brief-case containing fake letters suggesting that the Allied attack would be against Sardinia and Greece.

To make the operation credible, British intelligence created a fictional life for the corpse — a letter from a lover, tickets to a London theater, all the details of a life — but not the actual life of the dead young man whose corpse was being used. So, too, the man the media has presented to the nation as Mr. Obama is not the real man.

The mainstream media ruthlessly and endlessly repeats any McCain gaffes, while ignoring Obama gaffes. You have to go to weird little Internet sites to see all the stammering and stuttering that Mr. Obama needs before getting out a sentence fragment or two. But all you see on the networks is an eventual one or two clear sentences from Mr. Obama. Nor do you see Mr. Obama's ludicrous gaffe that Iran is a tiny country and no threat to us. Nor his 57 American states gaffe. Nor his forgetting, if he ever knew, that Russia has a veto in the United Nations. Nor his whining and puerile "come on" when he is being challenged. This is the kind of editing one would expect from Goebbels' disciples, not Cronkite's.

More appalling, NBC's "Saturday Night Live" suggested that Gov. Sarah Palin's husband had sex with his own daughters. That scene was written with the assistance of Al Franken, Democratic Party candidate for Senate in Minnesota. Talk about incest.

Democratic presidential candidate Sen.Barack Obama, D-Ill., greets supporters before his speech in downtown Charlotte, North Carolina on September 21, 2008. (UPI Photo/Nell Redmond)

But worse than all the unfair and distorted reporting and image projecting, is the shocking gaps in Mr. Obama's life that are not reported at all. The major media simply has not reported on Mr. Obama's two years at Columbia University in New York, where, among other things, he lived a mere quarter mile from former terrorist Bill Ayers— after which they both ended up as neighbors and associates in Chicago. Mr. Obama denies more than a passing relationship with Mr. Ayers. Should the media be curious? In only two weeks the media has focused on all the colleges Mrs. Palin has attended, her husband's driving habits 20 years ago and the close criticism of Mrs. Palin's mayoral political opponents. But in two years they haven't bothered to see how close Mr. Obama was with the terrorist Ayers.

Nor have the media paid any serious attention to Mr. Obama's rise in Chicago politics — how did honest Obama rise in the famously sordid Chicago political machine with the full support of Boss Daley? Despite the great — and unflattering details on Mr. Obama's Chicago years presented in David Freddoso's new book, the mainstream media continues to ignore both the facts and the book. It took a British publication, the Economist, to give Mr. Freddoso's book a review with fair comment.

The public image of Mr. Obama as an idealistic, post-race, post-partisan, well-spoken and honest young man with the wisdom and courage befitting a great national leader is a confection spun by a willing conspiracy of Mr. Obama, his publicist David Axelrod and most of the senior editors, producers and reporters of the national media.

Perhaps that is why the National Journal's respected correspondent Stuart Taylor has written that "the media can no longer be trusted to provide accurate and fair campaign reporting and analysis." That conspiracy has not only photo-shopped out all of Mr. Obama's imperfections (and dirtied up his opponent Mr. McCain's image), but it has put most of his questionable history down the memory hole.

The public will be voting based on the idealized image of the man who never was. If he wins, however, we will be governed by the sunken, cynical man Mr. Obama really is. One can only hope that the senior journalists will be judged as harshly for their professional misconduct as Wall Street's leaders currently are for their failings.

Posted by: Mark Garnett | September 24, 2008 3:10 PM | Report abuse

Wow, defending the NYT on that one sided article is making this California girl smile.
The NYT has it in for any thing or anyone that is not a Democrat. ANY fool know this, but to defend it really foolish.

Posted by: Patti | September 24, 2008 3:49 PM | Report abuse

Battleground, you might want to consider the difference between a 'fact' and a 'theory'.

For instance, when you write, "The New York Times is the idea mill for the Democrat party. The NYT passes on its ultra-liberal ideas to the Democrat party and it becomes platform. In return for this the NYT promotes liberal Democrats 110% and serves as the propaganda bureau for the party."

That's a theory. You're trying to explain the seeming connection between related events. There's nothing factual in your statement. It's an idea that you have. Maybe there's some truth to it, maybe there isn't. But it's not based in fact.

A fact is something that is actually seen or observed. For instance, here's a fact: The Moscow Times is an English only newspaper that began publication in 1992.

So, when you go on to say "This is very similar to the relationship the Moscow Times had with the Communist party of the old Soviet Union.." you are making a factual mistake. The Moscow Times never had a relationship with the Communist party.

So, when finish up by writing "These facts are obvious and indisputable" you are mistaken on at least two levels. First, because your initial "fact" is actually a theory that is neither obvious nor indisputable and second because the one fact that you do try to offer up isn't even accurate.

But, feel free to keep telling the NYT how to run a newspaper.

Posted by: todd | September 24, 2008 5:06 PM | Report abuse

Quit muzzling our press with your "liberal media" myth. It's their jobs to be our watchdogs and report the truth, not equal coverage of two very unequal campaigns.

Posted by: Andy | September 24, 2008 6:10 PM | Report abuse

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