We recently hit the Times's and its online "Blogtalk" feature which ostensibly offers a round-up of whatever hot political issues bloggers are discussing. On Saturday, our beef was that "Blogtalk" downplayed the wildly inaccurate story prominent right-wing blogs were pushing about how the Obama campaign was somehow behind websites spreading misinformation about Sarah Palin.
On Monday, "Blogtalk," returned to focus on the breaking news about Palin's daughter, which lit up both ends of the Internet spectrum. But instead of taking the temperature of the whole blogosphere, "Blogtalk" focused exclusively on the spin right-wing bloggers were putting out. (i.e. They were virtually unanimous that the news would not hurt the McCain/Palin ticket.)
Here's a dissection of the "Blogtalk" analysis:
No of right-wing blog/bloggers mentioned : 10
No. of liberal blogs/bloggers quoted: 8
No. of liberal blogs/bloggers mentioned: 0
No. of liberal blog/bloggers quoted: 0
Coming off a week of nearly endless, speculative reporting from the Democratic convention where journalists wondered out loud about the unity of Democrats, whether Hillary Clinton would endorse Barack Obama, whether Bill Clinton would get over his anger, and whether the Clinton's secretly wanted Obama to lose in November, it will be interesting to see tonight if the TV pundits engage in any speculation about whether it was really necessary for Bush to cancel his primetime speech at the convention in order to monitor at Cat 2 storm miss New Orleans.
And will any of the pundits ask why GOP organizers don't simply re-shuffle their convention schedule in order to make sure Bush gets a primetime speaking slot?
Or does the press not speculate about Republican motives?
Says Daily Howler.
Nervous GOP convention watchers must love to see articles that begin like this:
"Republican officials say their radically curtailed convention offers a big political opportunity for the party to redeem itself on the competence issue - and for John McCain to step out of President Bush's shadow once and for all."
Was just swell.
CJR reminds us that even though the press dedicated endless hours and column inches to speculating about who McCain's VP picke would be, they all pretty much missed the story.
Apparently if Republicans write enough angry letters about a Politico piece, Politico will print the letters and make them the lead item on its website. (Who knew?)
That's exactly what Politico just did. After it published a tough Saturday column by Jim Vandehei and John Harris suggesting McCain's VP pick was an act of desperation, on Sunday the duo returned and turned over all kinds of Politico real estate to angry Republican readers, reprinting letter after letter after letter explaining why Palin was a fantastic choice.
It looks to us like a classic example of Beltway journalists being so easily spooked by conservative critics.
Ian Welsh at FDL takes a look. (But hey, there are only 15,000 j's in town, right?)
Actually the sub-head to the Post's Palin article today:
"Fellow Maverick Survived McCain's Thorough Vetting Process, Aides Say"
Our only question is, did the aides say she survived the vetting process and call her a maverick? Or did the maverick part come courtesy of Post editors. Honestly, it's hard to tell where one team ends and the other begins.