Oh, don't act surprised. The warblogging site has been part of the right-wing, stopped-watch brigade for years. (They're right twice a day, tops.)
Jawa was at the center of an overexcited right-wing blog launch Monday morning ("extensive research" was involved!) with a completely circumstantial report that basically accused somebody who may or may not have had indirect relations with the Obama campaign of posting an anti-Palin video on YouTube "aimed at discouraging people from voting for McCain/Palin." Period.
We know, it didn't make much sense to us either. We guess Jawa's point was that the Obama campaign was somehow trying to create the perception of a viral video when in fact the clip was professionally made. We're talking real above-the-fold breaking news, right?
Well, it turns out the Los Angeles-based public relations specialist who Jawa accused of being the Obama bag man on the YouTube clip, Ethan Winner, did in fact create the video. He did it himself and paid for it himself and the campaign was not involved in making or spreading the YouTube clip. (Even if the Obama team was involved, so what?)
Winner made this sort of glaringly obvious observation about the rise of user-generated media, which the right-wing bloggers just don't get:
Just like the thousands of Americans who have posted videos on the Internet regarding the current Presidential campaign, I produced this video as an expression of my right to free speech, which is guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution.
Note that Winner pulled the YouTube clip in question because after JaWa published personal information about him, his family started receiving threatening and abusive phone calls and emails.
So really, just another day at the office for the can't-shoot-straight gang on the far side of the blogosphere, which is now reduced to analyzing audio snippets of the voice-over pro who helped with the YouTube clip because she apparently is the key to unlocking this (none) mystery.
Honestly, just once when right-wing bloggers claim to have the goods on some supposed blockbuster (Jamil Hussein, anyone?), couldn't they first line up some actual facts before going public with their half-cocked conspiracy theories and relying on hope-and-prayer language like, "If all of this is true...."? It would save us all a lot of time.
Then again, their adventures do produce lots of unintended merriment for us, so we're torn over whether we want them to stop or not.
The WaPo says its been 40 days since McCain took press questions. You'd think that would be a bigger news story by now.
Question: At what point are the McCain's camp's declarations of war on the press no longer newsworthy?
Let's just say that journalistically, the two form a perfect union. MMA's Terry Krepel spells it out at HuffPost.
And that for "40 years, Democrats have been mostly out of stop with the nation."
Oh my. So for all those years in the last four decades when Democrats controlled Congress (and often the White House) they were out of step with the country? And when Democrats threw out the Republican majority in recent years, they were out of step?
Also note that Newsweek's Jonathan Darman, in making his case, does not point to a single poll or survey result to back up his claim that America is a center-right claim. We're not surprised. Because as a Media Matters study indicated, the relevant polling data suggests just the opposite; that across the board Americans side with a Democratic, or liberal agenda, in terms of big government, gun control laws, gay rights, abortion rights, tax cuts and foreign policy.
American Prospect looks at what it means now that newspaper chains are closing up their Beltway bureaus, and how one of journalism's best jobs is becoming extinct.
This media narrative has already become quite tiresome: Joe Biden, while campaigning non-stop, often makes unscripted comments that journalists try desperately to whip into "gaffes" so they can write stories about how Biden is gaffe-prone. The Politico is the latest on the Biden-is-a-goof assembly line and the results are embarrassing. Not for Biden but for Politico.
Headlined, "Blue-collar vote, one gaffe at a time," readers likely expect Politico to provide a long list of gaffe's to substantiate the article, right? Wrong. Here's Politico money graph where it pretty much details all its proof of Biden's gaffey-ness:
Among other things, the Delaware senator has said that Hillary Rodham Clinton may have been a better vice presidential pick; accidentally referred to his partner as "Barack America"; told a wheelchair-bound man to "stand up"; and called Michelle Obama's convention speech "the most remarkable speech I have heard in my life."
Let's take those one at a time.
1. Biden's comment about Clinton came in response to a voter in New Hampshire who told Biden he was glad Barack Obama picked Biden over Clinton. Meaning, Biden was being a gentleman and saying something gracious about Clinton in return. The Politico left out the context.
2. So what if he referred to Obama as "Barack America"?
3. The wheelchair incident was indeed a gaffe and Biden quickly apologized for it.
4. Biden said Michelle Obama's speech the most remarkable he'd ever heard because that's what he believes. Who are Politico reporters to doubt Biden's word?
Elsewhere is the soggy story, Politico thinks it's a big deal that while campaigning in parts of Pennsylvania where there are lots of Catholic voters, Biden talks about his Irish Catholic roots.
Note to Politico: That's called smart campaigning, not making a gaffe.
The deep irony with the media's beloved, Biden-says-nutty-things narrative is that campaign journalists whine incessantly about how scripted candidates are and that their interaction with voters out on the trail isn't authentic. But when somebody like Biden comes along and communicates freely with voters and routinely ventures off-script, what does the press do? It mocks the candidate for not being scripted enough.
At least not the one Eric Alterman placed to the paper's deputy editor of the national section, Bill Hamilton, asking for a clarification regarding the daily's policy on passing along campaign falsehoods to readers.
And Alterman even made sure his phone message was polite.
Howard Kurtz publishes one of his patented media mash notes on Monday where he seemingly spins a wheel containing names of (mostly conservative) elite Beltway pundits and decides that that week they're hotter than hot and then collects quotes from that pundit's media pals who couldn't agree more. The whole ritual is rather tired and hollow and high schoolish.
Today, for no apparent reason, it's David Brooks turn to wear the tiara.
And FYI, despite Kurtz's best efforts to suggest Brooks is somehow respected on the Left, which makes his appeal unique, the truth is Brooks is routinely mocked by liberal for being intellectually dishonest. But none of that matters, because the Beltway crowd thinks Brooks is just swell.