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AikidoSoul Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 04:12 PM
Original message
US News Media's "War on Gore" (Why does the press seem to hate him?)
Was astonished to read all of these lies promulgated about Gore during the last election

"At times, the media jettisoned any pretext of objectivity. According to various accounts of the first Democratic debate in Hanover, N.H., reporters openly mocked Gore as they sat in a nearby press room and watched the debate on television"

http://www.consortiumnews.com/2007/032107.html

US News Media's "War on Gore"
By Robert Parry
Consortium News

Thursday 22 March 2007

When historians sort out what happened to the United States at the start of the 21st Century, one of the mysteries may be why the national press corps ganged up like school-yard bullies against a well-qualified Democratic presidential candidate while giving his dimwitted Republican opponent virtually a free pass..

How could major news organizations, like The New York Times and The Washington Post, have behaved so irresponsibly as to spread falsehoods and exaggerations to tear down then-Vice President Al Gore - ironically while the newspapers were berating him for supposedly lying and exaggerating?

In a modern information age, these historians might ask, how could an apocryphal quote like Gore claiming to have "invented the Internet" been allowed to define a leading political figure much as the made-up quote "let them eat cake" was exploited by French propagandists to undermine Marie Antoinette two centuries earlier?

Why did the U.S. news media continue ridiculing Gore in 2002 when he was one of the most prominent Americans to warn that George W. Bush's radical policy of preemptive war was leading the nation into a disaster in Iraq?

Arguably, those violations of journalistic principles at leading U.S. news organizations, in applying double standards to Gore and Bush, altered the course of American history and set the nation on a very dangerous course.

<<<<<<<SNIP>>>>>>>>

In early 2000, we published a story about that hostility and how it changed the dynamic of that crucial presidential race. We noted that "to read the major newspapers and to watch the TV pundit shows, one can't avoid the impression that many in the national press have decided that Vice President Al Gore is unfit to be elected the next President of the United States"

The article, entitled "Al Gore v. the Media," went on to say:
Across the board - from The Washington Post to The Washington Times, from The New York Times to the New York Post, from NBC's cable networks to the traveling campaign press corps - journalists don't even bother to disguise their contempt for Gore anymore.

At one early Democratic debate, a gathering of about 300 reporters in a nearby press room hissed and hooted at Gore's answers. Meanwhile, every perceived Gore misstep, including his choice of clothing, is treated as a new excuse to put him on a psychiatrist's couch and find him wanting.

'Delusional'

Journalists freely call him "delusional," "a liar" and "Zelig." Yet, to back up these sweeping denunciations, the media has relied on a series of distorted quotes and tendentious interpretations of his words, at times following scripts written by the national Republican leadership.

In December 1999, for instance, the news media generated dozens of stories about Gore's supposed claim that he discovered the Love Canal toxic waste dump. "I was the one that started it all," he was quoted as saying. This "gaffe" then was used to recycle other situations in which Gore allegedly exaggerated his role or, as some writers put it, told "bold-faced lies."

But behind these examples of Gore's "lies" was some very sloppy journalism. The Love Canal flap started when The Washington Post and The New York Times misquoted Gore on a key point and cropped out the context of another sentence to give readers a false impression of what he meant.

The error was then exploited by national Republicans and amplified endlessly by the rest of the news media, even after the Post and Times grudgingly filed corrections.

<<<<<<SNIP>>>>

The Republican National Committee spotted Gore's alleged boast and was quick to fax around its own take. "Al Gore is simply unbelievable - in the most literal sense of that term," declared Republican National Committee Chairman Jim Nicholson. "It's a pattern of phoniness - and it would be funny if it weren't also a little scary."

The GOP release then doctored Gore's quote a bit more. After all, it would be grammatically incorrect to have said, "I was the one that started it all." So, the Republican handout fixed Gore's grammar to say, "I was the one who started it all."

In just one day, the key quote had transformed from "that was the one that started it all" to "I was the one that started it all" to "I was the one who started it all."

Instead of taking the offensive against these misquotes, Gore tried to head off the controversy by clarifying his meaning and apologizing if anyone got the wrong impression. But the fun was just beginning.

'Love Factor'

The national pundit shows quickly picked up the story of Gore's new "exaggeration."

"Let's talk about the 'love' factor here," chortled Chris Matthews of CNBC's Hardball. "Here's the guy who said he was the character Ryan O'Neal was based on in 'Love Story.' … It seems to me … he's now the guy who created the Love Canal . I mean, isn't this getting ridiculous? … Isn't it getting to be delusionary?"

Matthews turned to his baffled guest, Lois Gibbs, the Love Canal resident who is widely credited with bringing the issue to public attention. She sounded confused about why Gore would claim credit for discovering Love Canal, but defended Gore's hard work on the issue.

"I actually think he's done a great job," Gibbs said. "I mean, he really did work, when nobody else was working, on trying to define what the hazards were in this country and how to clean it up and helping with the Superfund and other legislation."

The next morning, Post political writer Ceci Connolly highlighted Gore's boast and placed it in his alleged pattern of falsehoods. "Add Love Canal to the list of verbal missteps by Vice President Gore," she wrote. "The man who mistakenly claimed to have inspired the movie 'Love Story' and to have invented the Internet says he didn't quite mean to say he discovered a toxic waste site."

That night, CNBC's Hardball returned to Gore's Love Canal quote by playing the actual clip but altering the context by starting Gore's comments with the words, "I found a little town…"

"It reminds me of Snoopy thinking he's the Red Baron," laughed Chris Matthews. "I mean how did he get this idea? Now you've seen Al Gore in action. I know you didn't know that he was the prototype for Ryan O'Neal's character in 'Love Story' or that he invented the Internet. He now is the guy who discovered Love Canal."

Matthews compared the Vice President to "Zelig," the Woody Allen character whose face appeared at an unlikely procession of historic events. "What is it, the Zelig guy who keeps saying, 'I was the main character in 'Love Story.' I invented the Internet. I invented Love Canal."

The following day, Rupert Murdoch's New York Post elaborated on Gore's pathology of deception. "Again, Al Gore has told a whopper," the Post wrote. "Again, he's been caught red-handed and again, he has been left sputtering and apologizing. This time, he falsely took credit for breaking the Love Canal story. … Yep, another Al Gore bold-faced lie."

The editorial continued: "Al Gore appears to have as much difficulty telling the truth as his boss, Bill Clinton. But Gore's lies are not just false, they're outrageously, stupidly false. It's so easy to determine that he's lying, you have to wonder if he wants to be found out.

"Does he enjoy the embarrassment? Is he hell-bent on destroying his own campaign? … Of course, if Al Gore is determined to turn himself into a national laughingstock, who are we to stand in his way?"

<<<<<<SNIP>>>>>

The editorial denounced Gore as "a politician who not only manufactures gross, obvious lies about himself and his achievements but appears to actually believe these confabulations."

Yet, while the national media was excoriating Gore, the Concord students were learning more than they had expected about how media and politics work in modern America.

For days, the students pressed for a correction from The Washington Post and The New York Times. But the prestige papers balked, insisting that the error was insignificant.

"The part that bugs me is the way they nit pick," said Tara Baker, a Concord High junior. " they should at least get it right."

When the David Letterman show made Love Canal the jumping off point for a joke list: "Top 10 Achievements Claimed by Al Gore," the students responded with a press release entitled "Top 10 Reasons Why Many Concord High Students Feel Betrayed by Some of the Media Coverage of Al Gore's Visit to Their School."

he Web site, The Daily Howler, also was hectoring what it termed a "grumbling editor" at the Post to correct the error.

<<<<SNIP>>>>

The Post's Ceci Connolly even defended her inaccurate rendition of Gore's quote as something of a journalistic duty. "We have an obligation to our readers to alert them this continues to be something of a habit," she said.

The half-hearted corrections also did not stop newspapers around the country from continuing to use the bogus quote.

A Dec. 9 editorial in the Lancaster New Era even published the polished misquote that the Republican National Committee had stuck in a press release: "I was the one who started it all."

The New Era then went on to psychoanalyze Gore. "Maybe the lying is a symptom of a more deeply-rooted problem: Al Gore doesn't know who he is," the editorial stated. "The Vice President is a serial prevaricator."

In the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, writer Michael Ruby concluded that "the Gore of '99" was full of lies. He "suddenly discovers elastic properties in the truth," Ruby declared. "He invents the Internet, inspires the fictional hero of 'Love Story,' blows the whistle on Love Canal. Except he didn't really do any of those things."

<<<<<SNIP>>>>>

More than two weeks after the Post correction, the bogus quote was still spreading. The Providence Journal lashed out at Gore in an editorial that reminded readers that Gore had said about Love Canal, "I was the one that started it all." The editorial then turned to the bigger picture:

"This is the third time in the last few months that Mr. Gore has made a categorical assertion that is - well, untrue. … There is an audacity about Mr. Gore's howlers that is stunning. … Perhaps it is time to wonder what it is that impels Vice President Gore to make such preposterous claims, time and again."

On New Year's Eve, a column in The Washington Times returned again to the theme of Gore's pathological lies.

Entitled "Liar, Liar; Gore's Pants on Fire," the column by Jackie Mason and Raoul Felder concluded that "when Al Gore lies, it's without any apparent reason. Mr. Gore had already established his credits on environmental issues, for better or worse, and had even been anointed 'Mr. Ozone.' So why did he have to tell students in Concord, New Hampshire, 'I found a little place in upstate New York called Love Canal. I had the first hearing on the issue. I was the one that started it all.'"

The characterization of Gore as a clumsy liar continued into the New Year. Again in The Washington Times, R. Emmett Tyrrell Jr. put Gore's falsehoods in the context of a sinister strategy:

"Deposit so many deceits and falsehoods on the public record that the public and the press simply lose interest in the truth. This, the Democrats thought, was the method behind Mr. Gore's many brilliantly conceived little lies. Except that Mr. Gore's lies are not brilliantly conceived. In fact, they are stupid. He gets caught every time … Just last month, Mr. Gore got caught claiming … to have been the whistle-blower for 'discovering Love Canal.'"

<<<<<SNIP>>>>>

The earliest of these Gore "lies," dating back to 1997, was Gore mentioning a press report that indicated that he and his wife Tipper had served as models for the lead characters in the sentimental bestseller and movie, Love Story.

When the author, Erich Segal, was asked about this, he stated that the preppy hockey-playing male lead, Oliver Barrett IV, indeed was modeled after Gore as well as after Gore's Harvard roommate, actor Tommy Lee Jones. But Segal said the female lead, Jenny, was not modeled after Tipper Gore.

Indictment

Rather than treating this distinction as a minor point of legitimate confusion, the news media concluded that Gore had willfully lied. The media made the case an indictment against Gore's honesty.

In doing so, however, the media repeatedly misstated the facts, insisting that Segal had denied that Gore was the model for the lead male character. In reality, Segal had confirmed that Gore was, at least partly, the inspiration for the character, Barrett, played by Ryan O'Neal in the movie.

Some journalists seemed to understand the nuance but still could not resist disparaging Gore's honesty.

For instance, in its attack on Gore over the Love Canal quote, the Boston Herald conceded that Gore "did provide material" for Segal's book, but the newspaper added that it was "for a minor character." That, of course, was untrue, since the Barrett character was one of Love Story's two principal characters.

The media's treatment of the Internet comment followed a similar course. Gore's statement may have been poorly phrased, but its intent was clear: he was trying to say that he worked in Congress to help develop the modern Internet. Gore wasn't claiming to have "invented" the Internet, which carried the notion of a hands-on computer engineer.

Gore's actual comment, in an interview with CNN's Wolf Blitzer that aired on March 9, 1999, was as follows: "During my service in the United States Congress, I took the initiative in creating the Internet."

Republicans quickly went to work on Gore's statement. In press releases, they noted that the precursor of the Internet, called ARPANET, existed in 1971, a half dozen years before Gore entered Congress. But ARPANET was a tiny networking of about 30 universities, a far cry from today's "information superhighway," a phrase widely credited to Gore.

<<<<<<SNIP>>>>>>>>

Now, with the Love Canal controversy, this media pattern of distortion has returned with a vengeance. The national news media has put a false quote into Gore's mouth and then extrapolated from it to the point of questioning his sanity. Even after the quote was acknowledged to be wrong, the words continued to be repeated, again becoming part of Gore's "record."

At times, the media jettisoned any pretext of objectivity. According to various accounts of the first Democratic debate in Hanover, N.H., reporters openly mocked Gore as they sat in a nearby press room and watched the debate on television.

Several journalists later described the incident, but without overt criticism of their colleagues. As The Daily Howler observed, Time's Eric Pooley cited the reporters' reaction only to underscore how Gore was failing in his "frenzied attempt to connect."

"The ache was unmistakable - and even touching - but the 300 media types watching in the press room at Dartmouth were, to use the appropriate technical term, totally grossed out by it," Pooley wrote. "Whenever Gore came on too strong, the room erupted in a collective jeer, like a gang of 15-year-old Heathers cutting down some hapless nerd."

Hotline's Howard Mortman described the same behavior as the reporters "groaned, laughed and howled" at Gore's comments.

Later, during an appearance on C-SPAN's Washington Journal, Salon's Jake Tapper cited the Hanover incident, too. "I can tell you that the only media bias I have detected in terms of a group media bias was, at the first debate between Bill Bradley and Al Gore, there was hissing for Gore in the media room up at Dartmouth College. The reporters were hissing Gore, and that's the only time I've ever heard the press room boo or hiss any candidate of any party at any event."

Traditionally, journalists pride themselves in maintaining deadpan expressions in such public settings, at most chuckling at a comment or raising an eyebrow, but never displaying overt contempt. The anti-Gore bias of the major news media continued on through Campaign 2000.

Preemptive War

In 2001, after Bush claimed the White House with the help of five Republican allies on the U.S. Supreme Court, Gore withdrew from the public spotlight. After the 9/11 attacks, he offered support to President Bush, but Gore grew uneasy as Bush promulgated a global strategy of preemptive war, reserving the right to attack any country that might somehow threaten the United States sometime in the future.

On Sept. 23, 2002, Gore delivered a comprehensive critique of Bush's radical departure from decades of American support for international law. In his speech at the Commonwealth Club in San Francisco, Gore laid out a series of concerns and differences that he had with Bush's preemption policy and specifically Bush's decision to refashion the "war on terror" into an immediate war with Iraq.

Gore, who had supported the Persian Gulf War in 1990-91, criticized Bush's failure to enlist the international community as his father did. Gore also warned about the negative impact that alienating other nations was having on the broader war against terrorists.

"I am deeply concerned that the course of action that we are presently embarking upon with respect to Iraq has the potential to seriously damage our ability to win the war against terrorism and to weaken our ability to lead the world in this new century," Gore said. "To put first things first, I believe that we ought to be focusing our efforts first and foremost against those who attacked us on Sept. 11. … Great nations persevere and then prevail. They do not jump from one unfinished task to another. We should remain focused on the war against terrorism."

Instead of keeping after al-Qaeda and stabilizing Afghanistan, Bush had chosen to jump to a new war against Iraq as the first example of his policy of preemption, Gore said.

"He is telling us that our most urgent task right now is to shift our focus and concentrate on immediately launching a new war against Saddam Hussein," Gore said. "And the President is proclaiming a new uniquely American right to preemptively attack whomsoever he may deem represents a potential future threat."

Gore also objected to the timing of the vote on war with Iraq. "President Bush is demanding, in this high political season, that Congress speedily affirm that he has the necessary authority to proceed immediately against Iraq and, for that matter, under the language of his resolution, against any other nation in the region regardless of subsequent developments or emerging circumstances," Gore said.

The former Vice President staked out a position with subtle but important differences from Bush's broad assertion that the United States has the right to override international law on the President's command. Gore argued that U.S. unilateral power should be used sparingly, only in extreme situations.

"There's no international law that can prevent the United States from taking action to protect our vital interests when it is manifestly clear that there's a choice to be made between law and our survival," Gore said. "Indeed, international law itself recognizes that such choices stay within the purview of all nations. I believe, however, that such a choice is not presented in the case of Iraq."

Loss of Goodwill

Gore bemoaned, too, that Bush's actions have dissipated the international good will that surrounded the United States after the 9/11 attacks.

"That has been squandered in a year's time and replaced with great anxiety all around the world, not primarily about what the terrorist networks are going to do, but about what we're going to do," Gore said. "Now, my point is not that they're right to feel that way, but that they do feel that way."

Gore also took aim at Bush's unilateral assertion of his right to imprison American citizens without trial or legal representation simply by labeling them "enemy combatants."

"The very idea that an American citizen can be imprisoned without recourse to judicial process or remedy, and that this can be done on the sole say-so of the President of the United States or those acting in his name, is beyond the pale and un-American, and ought to be stopped," Gore said.

Gore raised, too, practical concerns about the dangers that might follow the overthrow of Hussein, if chaos in Iraq followed. Gore cited the deteriorating political condition in Afghanistan where the new central government exerted real control only in parts of Kabul while ceding effective power to warlords in the countryside.

"What if, in the aftermath of a war against Iraq, we faced a situation like that, because we've washed our hands of it?" Gore asked. "What if the al-Qaeda members infiltrated across the borders of Iraq the way they are in Afghanistan? … Now, I just think that if we end the war in Iraq the way we ended the war in Afghanistan, we could very well be much worse off than we are today."

While it may have been understandable why Bush's supporters would be upset over Gore's address - radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh said he was unable to get to sleep after listening to it - their subsequent reaction was more attuned to obscuring Gore's arguments than addressing what he actually said.

Rather than welcome a vigorous debate on the merits and shortcomings of the so-called "Bush Doctrine," right-wing and mainstream commentators treated Gore as dishonest, unpatriotic and even unhinged.

Slapped Around

Gore was slapped around by Beltway political analysts, hit from all angles, variously portrayed as seeking cheap political gain and committing political suicide.

Helped by the fact that Gore's speech received spotty television coverage - MSNBC carried excerpts live and C-SPAN replayed the speech later that night - pro-Bush commentators were free to distort Gore's words and then dismiss his arguments as "lies" largely because few Americans actually heard what he had said.

Some epithets came directly from Bush partisans. Republican National Committee spokesman Jim Dyke called Gore a "political" hack. An administration source told The Washington Post that Gore was simply "irrelevant," a theme that would be repeated often in the days after Gore's speech.

Other barrages were fired off by artillery battalions of right-wing opinion-makers from the strategic high ground of leading editorial pages, on talk radio and on television chat shows.

"Gore's speech was one no decent politician could have delivered," wrote Washington Post columnist Michael Kelly. "It was dishonest, cheap, low. It was hollow. It was bereft of policy, of solutions, of constructive ideas, very nearly of facts - bereft of anything other than taunts and jibes and embarrassingly obvious lies. It was breathtakingly hypocritical, a naked political assault delivered in tones of moral condescension from a man pretending to be superior to mere politics. It was wretched. It was vile. It was contemptible."

"A pudding with no theme but much poison," declared another Post columnist, Charles Krauthammer. "It was a disgrace - a series of cheap shots strung together without logic or coherence."

At Salon.com, Andrew Sullivan entitled his piece about Gore's speech "The Opportunist" and characterized Gore as "bitter."

While some depicted Gore's motivation as political "opportunism," columnist William Bennett mocked Gore for sealing his political doom and banishing himself "from the mainstream of public opinion."

In an Op-Ed piece for The Wall Street Journal, entitled "Al Gore's Political Suicide," Bennett said Gore had "made himself irrelevant by his inconsistency" and had engaged in "an act of self-immolation" by daring to criticize Bush's policy. "Now we have reason to be grateful once again that Al Gore is not the man in the White House, and never will be," Bennett wrote.

When the conservative pundits addressed Gore's actual speech, his words were bizarrely parsed or selectively edited to allow reprising of the news media's favorite "Lyin' Al" canard from the presidential campaign.

Kelly, for instance, resumed his editorial harangue with the argument that Gore was lying when the former Vice President said "the vast majority of those who sponsored, planned and implemented the cold-blooded murder of more than 3,000 Americans are still at large, still neither located nor apprehended, much less punished and neutralized."

To Kelly, this comment was "reprehensible" and "a lie." Kelly continued, "The men who 'implemented' the 'cold-blooded murder of more than 3,000 Americans' are dead; they died in the act of murder on Sept. 11. Gore can look this up." Kelly added that most of the rest were in prison or on the run.

Yet, Kelly's remarks were obtuse even by his standards. Gore clearly was talking about the likes of Osama bin Laden and Mullah Omar, who indeed had not been located.

<<<<<<<SNIP>>>>>>>
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bahrbearian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 04:16 PM
Response to Original message
1. WOW
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John Q. Citizen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 05:30 PM
Response to Reply #1
10. Wow indeed! I see why Al Gore is so passionate about open media, he
got slashed by closed media.
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rainy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 04:18 PM
Response to Original message
2. Gore should run and you can bet we will have his back this time like no
other time. We will become the media. We will bombard them when they lie. We will show up with banners and posters that tell the truth and dispute their lies.
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AikidoSoul Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 04:42 PM
Response to Reply #2
4. That would take a lot of effort... but if only 30,000 out of 100,000 DUers would call, write and
generally raise hell each time it happens -- Gore would have a shot at winning... again.

Think of it... he won despite the bias and lies against him!

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solara Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 04:24 PM
Response to Original message
3. The press doesn't "seem" to hate him.. they absolutely hate him
I don't get it...never did, never will



INVESTIGATE IMPEACH INDICT INCARCERATE :patriot:


:kick:
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LunaSea Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 04:45 PM
Response to Original message
5. Gore knows their secret.....
Being a former journalist himself.

A degree in journalism is STILL easier to get than a degree in theatre.
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LunaSea Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 04:46 PM
Response to Original message
6. *
Edited on Thu Mar-22-07 04:47 PM by LunaSea
double post
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hfojvt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 05:00 PM
Response to Original message
7. one minor correction
"When the author, Erich Segal, was asked about this, he stated that the preppy hockey-playing male lead, Oliver Barrett IV, indeed was modeled after Gore as well as after Gore's Harvard roommate, actor Tommy Lee Jones. But Segal said the female lead, Jenny, was not modeled after Tipper Gore.

Indictment

Rather than treating this distinction as a minor point of legitimate confusion, the news media concluded that Gore had willfully lied. The media made the case an indictment against Gore's honesty."

Gore was not the one with the legitimate confusion. He was accurately quoting an article which he had read which said that Al and Tipper were the inspiration. It was the article which had the legitimate confusion, not Gore.
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The Backlash Cometh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 05:20 PM
Response to Original message
8. Nice list of names in that article.
I hope someone puts those pundits in the hotseat so we can get answers.
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The Count Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 05:23 PM
Response to Original message
9. And that's why words such as "electable" or "likable" are pure BS - media made BS
Of all our recent candidates - Gore was one of the best - squeaky clean, smart , articulate. But that didn't matter as MSM made up s* about him - and will again. So. keep that in mind when you want "fresh faces", talk about "baggage" or those words in my headers.
If they can do that to Gore, they can do it to anyone.
And, yeah, we need to become the media, because whomever will end up running against THEIR man, will undergo the same treatment.
They hate Gore more than they hated kerry because Gore actually fought for his electoral win.
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John Q. Citizen Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 05:43 PM
Response to Original message
11. Here's a letter I just sent to PBS' Washington Week, where Ceci Connolly
of the WaPo (who is part of the Perry story) currently has a part time gig around the table.

Here's the url of Washington Week http://www.pbs.org/weta/washingtonweek / The "contact us" is where you can send comments.

My letter-

I was wondering if you saw this piece;

U.S. News

Media's 'War on Gore'

By Robert Parry (A Special Report)
March 22, 2007

http://www.consortiumnews.com/2007/032107.html


It's the fascinating story of how the US News media turned one of our country's visionaries, Al Gore, into a laughing stock, based on reporting untruths, half truths and mis-truths.

I have long noticed how PBS always interviews reporters about stories, instead of interviewing participants of stories about stories. this seems to be a hallmark of PBS news reporting.

So here we have a fascinating story where one of the reporters on your show's "table" (Ceci Connolly) is actually part of the news story.

I'm a voter, a single dad, and a landlord, who after seeing what an obviously lying deluded barfing Al Gore appeared to be through the media lens, then went and voted for Ralph Nader because no way could I vote for bush.

I think this would make a compelling and very interesting show. It could be about Mainstream Media (MSM), alternative internet media, why the public has come to so distrust the MSM, and what exactly is the responsibility of the MSM and the the consequences of when the MSM gets it wrong, and why, when they do get it wrong they resist for so long making it right.

You could ask Ceci Connolly about lessons learned and perhaps you could find and invite some of those Concord, NH students mentioned in the story on to talk about their recollections. And of course, you could invite Robert Perry on to talk about his piece.

Just thought I'd pass on my idea to you. I hope you use it.
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AikidoSoul Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 06:44 PM
Response to Reply #11
18. I did the same thing--went to PBS' Washington Week and posted this letter
http://www.pbs.org/weta/washingtonweek /

Over the past six years I've increasingly looked for news and analysis in the alternative media and blogs-- checking many sources and viewpoints before moving onto the pages of the New York Times, Washington Post, or other so called "mainstream" media outlets to check out their take on events.

The reason? The MSM has too often failed to tell the truth and has lost most of my confidence. Many of us have noticed that the MSM has too often seemed like an obedient propaganda organ for the Bush administration.

With each passing day this administration's destructiveness becomes more evident and frightening. Shouldn't the MSM make a habit of routinely examining itself more closely so it stops repeating these offenses? If the press regularly has public conversations about this -- will the value of integrity and truth be raised again to its proper place of reverence?

Or will the press ignore these issues and continue to commit crimes of omission, distortion and outright lies. Look over the past several years and we can see egregious press crimes that contributed to our situation today.

One of those crimes was (and still is) the trashing of Albert Gore.

It might be healthy penance for the press to examine why it has so willfully distorted and vilified Al Gore over the years -- and unforgivably -- has never made a real effort to correct the record when it has reported untruths and serious misquotes -- with many journalists having the nerve to call him a "liar". Repeatedly. The sheer number of reporters and examples of this boggles the mind.

The injustice done to Gore is immeasurable.

The best documentation I've seen of the media's long list of lies, distortions, and outright hatred of Al Gore, is in today's well documented Consortium News in its special report entitled,

"U.S. News Media's 'War on Gore'" by Robert Parry
March 22, 2007

http://www.consortiumnews.com/2007/032107.html

I highly recommend it to all journalists, and suggest it be made part of a special report. Maybe you could invite some of the offenders to discuss this and have Al Gore present along with respected media-watchers. A constructive conversation would be welcome!

Besides redemption of journalistic reputations, it might be a way to give Gore an apology that hints at a willingness to treat him more fairly -- should he decide to run for president.

Not that he has shown any enthusiasm to run-- given the fact that he would have an enormous mess to clean up -- the size of which is beyond comprehension. Not a job that looks appealing.

I worry greatly that he naturally shuns the idea of running against a press that is so energetically,habitually and relentlessly unfair to him.

It's the press' duty to change the atmosphere and the tone of the media towards people like Gore who deserve to be recognized for their brains and integrity.

We need a nerd like Gore. He has been right on many things, and the man deserves to be recognized as being honest as well.




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glitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 05:43 PM
Response to Original message
12. Easy: they're paid to. And it goes on in LA Times and NY Times today
for their "reporting" on his testimony before Congress. I don't have the links, don't really want to give them the traffic, I heard the articles quoted on the radio.
Very pathetic. :puke:
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The Count Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 06:04 PM
Response to Reply #12
13. Bingo! Actually, the talking points attacks were first officially traced in 2000
Edited on Thu Mar-22-07 06:04 PM by The Count
with the Gore attacks. I remember reading about how the reports of "inventing the internet" and the "sighs" during the debate hit several media outlets simultaneously. The sighs especially were conclusive, as they were missing from debate accounts right after the debate, but became universally broadcasted the next day.
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glitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 07:41 PM
Response to Reply #13
21. They are so blatant. It's insulting, not just to us but also to themselves.
Sadly they don't even seem to pick up on how they are damaging their own credibility.

Who do they think is buying their crap? Do they think the people who listen to Rush Limbaugh read their papers? I think their only target audience for this kind of bullshit is their publisher. Seriously.
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etherealtruth Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 06:22 PM
Response to Original message
14. I have always believed that Gore's "stiffness" ...
... was purely a media construct. I have no clue why the media would so purposely mischaracterize his words and his intent ... Bizarre.

I am inclined to believe that the media has real problems with attractive, (in the physical sense)male DEM candidates
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gatorboy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 06:25 PM
Response to Original message
15. Kick!
:kick:
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earth mom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 06:35 PM
Response to Original message
16. They hate Gore because he won't support their greedy and evil intentions when he's elected.
They tear him to shreds every which way they can so that people are confused and uncertain about him. But one thing they didn't count on was that the film, "An Inconvenient Truth", proved that Al Gore is a truth teller, a true hero, a great statesman and the perfect leader for the good people of this country.

Checkmate. :evilgrin:
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Rosa Luxemburg Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 06:38 PM
Response to Original message
17. Psst.......he may join the 2008 race?
that's why (sssssh!)

who controls the media?
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tom_paine Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 07:12 PM
Response to Original message
19. Operation Mockingbird is now on steroids
That's all it is. As many Loyal Bushies as actual journalists. Occasional former gay male prostitutes using false names placed front-row-center to insert propaganda.

They can create damned near any atmosphere in the media they wish and hold it for almost as long as they wish. Look how bad, odious and nakedly felonious it had to get for even this nauseatingly tepid and cautious opposition. (with some small exceptions of hope)

Even now, in the past year, while the media is slightly less timorous, their constant terror of the Busheviks is evident. The Political Correctness of the Right, you see, and it is 100 times more odious and criminal and simply containing ill intent, than the mildly annoying (but created from good intentions, at least) Political Correctness of the Left.
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Uncle Joe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 07:39 PM
Response to Original message
20. Because he empowered us when he championed the internet,
and the Mass Corporate Media wanted to remain the sole gatekeepers to the truth, so they slandered, demeaned, obfuscated and generally bore false witness against him in retaliation, sort of like what Zeus had his vulture do to Prometheus only without all the liver eating.
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glitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 07:43 PM
Response to Reply #20
22. We still got fire and look what happened to Zeus :) nt
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Raksha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 09:22 PM
Response to Reply #22
28. Prometheus...I think you nailed it!
I hadn't thought of that. But you're right...we still got fire (truth).
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AikidoSoul Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 08:05 PM
Response to Reply #20
23. Now that's an interesting possibility... never thought of that
But wouldn't that resentment be more true of the owners of the media? Would you have expected big media's grunts to thrust the spear that did him in based on their bosses'revenge lust?

It has to be something else. Or something in addition to that.

What is it in Gore that triggers that idiotic response we used to see when we were in high school when the kids picked on the nerdiest kids -- and everybody chimed in with their taunts. Nobody would even speak to the kid for fear of being associated with him.

It's almost like a kind of anti-intellectual attitude that infects the press. We remember the attitude that was nourished at the time -- Bush was promoted and seen as the kind of guy "I'd like to have a beer with" ... idiot, er candidate... but a popular one at the time.

Maybe Gore was contaminated with labels from behind the scene by operatives who started a vicious whisper campaign that made him look like some lying monster.

There is some defect in us that makes us fall for this crap -- but especially if it comes from a friend or associate. Years ago I managed a campaign in a city race and was completely appalled that intelligent people with advanced degrees fell for the absurd lies that were told about my candidate.

The street lies included the claim that he was a child molester and had "burned the American flag in the town square....." I mean it was such crap... and yet, as one person (educated professional) told me -- she couldn't vote for him because she was afraid that if "...even one of those things was true..." that he would be a terrible person to have in office.

Old political dog street fighter types at the time told me that this was the "Cuban Rumor tactic".... I guess we call it "Swift Boating" now. Whatever it's called it's the passing around of disgusting lies that are so awful that they jolts you into a knee-jerk state of horror that cuts off circulation to the brain.

So think of it... if flaks started a whisper campaign that was aggressive enough... the same kind of thing could happen. A whisper campaign that fed on itself.

I just wish that someone would track these reporters and ask them to go to their original notes to see what really happened and how they sourced their information.

Some of the reports that came out of the RNC were obviously tainted, but others were somewhat surprising as they seem to have been repeated by honest reporters.

I have to think about this some more. It bothers me a lot because if it doesn't change and the record is not set straight in a meaningful way... we cannot expect that Gore will open himself to such vicious lies once again.
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Uncle Joe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 08:56 PM
Response to Reply #23
24. Yes, the owners are Zeus, and their minions are the Vulture,
Zeus didn't dirty his own hands. If any of the corporate owners of the media sincerely believed in journalistic integrity, this kind of unprofessional behavior would not have been tolerated, the puppets knew either their bosses didn't care or even encouraged it.

Another example, is Bush/Cheney and torture, it was the troops who did the dirty work, but we know who changed the policies on the treatment of POWs now known as enemy combatants, putting our troops in ambiguous situations. Bush/Cheney changed the atmosphere regarding torture in the same way as the corporate owners and CEOs of the Mass Corporate Media changed their own journalistic professional responsibilities to integrity.
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Raksha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 09:04 PM
Response to Original message
25. Great article! I'm looking forward to Bob Somerby's discussion of it.
He's been trying to get the "War on Gore" onto the public radar for nine years now. Just getting the media to acknowledge that it existed (and still does, to a certain degree) has been an uphill battle. They are constantly saying "he's changed" when the reality is that THEY have changed (or been forced to change, more likely) in their attitude to him.

I posted the link to the Consortium News article on another forum where one of the resident Freepers has been conducting his own one-man War on Gore, with help from some of the other kool-aid drinkers. It will help to expose their tactics when they start recycling the old lies and smears--one thing right-wing wackos are VERY conscientious about recycling!
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SoCalDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 09:08 PM
Response to Original message
26. Old habits die hard.. n/t
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Cha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 09:12 PM
Response to Original message
27. CORPORATEMEDIAWHORES
are Scared to Death of a real person who has the intelligence of Gore.

And they can manipulate that little dumbshit bush into doing anything they want. They, not knowing, just how much of dumbshit he really was..bought off more than they could cover up.

When are we going to have a Democratic America independent of the USMEDIAWHORES?
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Raksha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 09:31 PM
Response to Reply #27
30. Are you saying that someone with Gore's intelligence and vision
shows the media whores up for the superficial dipshits they are? I'm sure they'd all love to think of themselves as intellectuals. But glib snarkiness is NOT intellect or wit, even though many people tend to get them confused.
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nam78_two Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 09:23 PM
Response to Original message
29. K&R-these media assholes helped put that monkey in the WH.nt
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nadinbrzezinski Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 09:32 PM
Response to Original message
31. This is why we need to break up the corpo media
and ennact the fairness doctrine

The system is closed right now
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AikidoSoul Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 10:24 PM
Response to Reply #31
33. The Fairness Doctrine went down the toilet with Reagan
and let us hope and pray that this Democratic Congress is able to revive it. I catch a snippet about this somewhere on DU but never saw another word.

Anybody know what the story is on this?
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autorank Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 09:46 PM
Response to Original message
32. K&R And look at Parry on 2000, Same Subject -
ALL CONSORTIUM.NEWS ALL THE TIME

And look what Parry was saying in 2000...

Al Gore Versus the Media


By Robert Parry
To read the major newspapers and to watch the TV pundit shows, one can't avoid the impression that many in the national press corps have decided that Vice President Al Gore is unfit to be elected the next president of the United States.


Across the board -- from The Washington Post to The Washington Times, from The New York Times to the New York Post, from NBC's cable networks to the traveling campaign press corps -- journalists don't even bother to disguise their contempt for Gore anymore.

At one early Democratic debate, a gathering of about 300 reporters in a nearby press room hissed and hooted at Gore's answers. Meanwhile, every perceived Gore misstep, including his choice of clothing, is treated as a new excuse to put him on a psychiatrist's couch and find him wanting.

Journalists freely call him "delusional," "a liar" and "Zelig." Yet, to back up these sweeping denunciations, the media has relied on a series of distorted quotes and tendentious interpretations of his words, at times following scripts written by the national Republican leadership.
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Karenina Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-23-07 07:17 AM
Response to Reply #32
34. BTTT.
:kick:
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Dragonbreathp9d Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Mar-23-07 12:14 PM
Response to Original message
35. Well done compalation
thank you!
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