Ezra Klein wonders out loud:
I think one aspect of the modern press that doesn't get enough attention -- either among folks in the media or folks critiquing it -- is the transition from the fundamental scarcity being information to information being in abundance and the fundamental scarcity being mediation.
While defending his on-air Democratic convention comment that it's difficult for Democrats to criticize John McCain on national security because McCain was a POW during the Vietnam War while Clinton tried to avoid the draft.
Responding to FAIR, Brokaw claimed his comment came before Clinton spoke at the convention. It did not.
And how "she was mauled, minimized and manhandled by an openly skeptical media establishment." Daily Howler points out Kurtz' proof for said mauling it pretty thin.
Not when he can read minds. Tapper, who doubles as a professional parser of all-things Clinton related, reports that Hillary Clinton needs to be more forceful in her public denunciations of Sarah Palin. At least that's what some Democrats think, according to Tapper. Who are these disappointed Democrats and what are they actually saying about Clinton?
No details are offered. But trust us, Tapper just knows.
Of course, this wouldn't be an example of a journalist typing up his own Clinton opinion and then making it seem like news by not quoting invisible Democrats, would it?
UPDATE: We didn't mean to suggest that Tapper invented his sources or doesn't have any for his Clinton claim. But because he doesn't quote anybody (even anonymously) and makes only a vague reference to "Obama supporters," it's almost impossible for readers to gage whether Tapper's specific charge is true; that some Democrats are "troubled" at how Clinton is campaigning, or how widespread that sentiment is.
This wire service article, with the headline "Obama: Recession could delay rescinding tax cuts," is a mess. Here's the opening:
"Democrat Barack Obama says he would delay rescinding President Bush's tax cuts on wealthy Americans if he becomes the next president and the economy is in a recession, suggesting such an increase would further hurt the economy.
According to the AP, Obama's having second thoughts about GOP tax cuts for the rich. In the article, the AP points to an exchange Obama had Sunday on ABC where he was asked about middle class tax cuts:
""Even if we're still in a recession, I'm going to go through with my tax cuts," Obama said. "That's my priority.""
Hmm, Obama clearly stated he won't delay middle class tax cuts, which runs counter to the headline. What about tax cuts for the rich, is Obama re-thinking those? The AP again quotes Obama from ABC, but the premise there is, "What about increasing taxes on the wealthy?" [Emphasis added.]
Obama's response: "I think we've got to take a look and see where the economy is. I mean, the economy is weak right now."
The problem is that the headline tells readers Obama might have changed his mind about rescinding tax cuts. But in the article Obama specifically states he won't delay tax cuts for the middle class, and then says he's only thinking about delaying raising taxes on the wealthy.
Or has the AP adopted the spin that rescinding a tax cut is the same as raising taxes?
Attaturk at FDL expresses doubts.
So does Todd Gitlin, who raises the interesting point: Why is the Gibon/Palin interview spread out over two days? As Gitlin notes:
"Political interviews are never done like this. Because it makes the questioning entirely at the discretion of the person being interviewed and their handlers. The interviewer has to be on their best behavior, at least until the last of the 'multiple interviews' because otherwise the subsequent sittings just won't happen. For a political journalist to agree to such terms amounts to a form of self-gelding. The only interviews that are done this way are lifestyle and celebrity interviews."
So of course the Times has decided to join Drudge's media dance card by hyping his manufactured story about Oprah Winfrey not interviewing Palin. (See context here.) Look at the opening to the Times' piece:
"Oprah Winfrey has said she will not interview Gov. Sarah Palin of Alaska, the hottest political star in the firmament, and the decision is drawing negative reviews from many fans of the doyenne of daytime television.
A group of Republican women in Florida has announced a boycott of Ms. Winfrey's television show and called for cancellations of subscriptions to her magazine, "O: The Oprah Magazine." [Emphasis added.]
See the problem there? Partisans pick up Drudge's phony story and then the Times strolls in and claims the partisans represent "many fans." Ugh.
And by the way, the idea that Winfrey's staff was "sharply divided" by the Palin dispute, as Drudge's "sources" first claimed? Keep this mind, via Newsday's TV Zone:
"There's no such thing as a "divided" staff out there in Chicago. She is the Queen. They are her subjects. There are no disputes with the Queen, and that is that."
Via Crooks and Liars.