Friday, June 27, 2008

JUST AS LONG AS THEY SPELL THE NAME RIGHT. The tiresome work of heaping blame for everything on the media never ends. Today's weary shovelman is Patrick Ruffini. He claims that the "3-to-1 ratio" of Obama-only to McCain-only stories on Google News proves Routine 12, aka media bias in favor of Democrats ("the media made an in-kind contribution of tens of millions of dollars in 'free' media to Obama"), with an online-media-spend angle to add both a modish sheen to the old gambit and a hint of quid-pro-quo corruption.

Stories easily found at Ruffini's Obama-Google link include "Obama's policy pirouettes lead him toward the center," "Michelle Obama Receives Lukewarm Reception for Lukewarm Position on Gay Marriage," "Obama-Clinton joint appearance faces skeptics," "Muslim Americans Feel Shunned by Obama," articles that call Obama "opportunistic," and editorials by such devoted Obama supporters as Charles Krauthammer (who, hilariously, talks about how the press is giving Obama a free pass).

We should also consider that many seemingly neutral Obama stories, such as the ones about Obama's support for gay rights, may be perceived negatively in some jurisdictions (cue "Dueling Banjos").

If Obama is paying money for this treatment, I hope he also gets a heavy damaged-merchandise discount.

I don't begrudge Ruffini the Google journalism per se -- in fact, I've used it myself, when I pointed out that the top rightwing bloggers much prefer to talk about Obama than McCain. Clearly Obama is more interesting to everyone, including his mortal enemies, than the old fart he's running against. If that's media bias, Ruffini's next job should be to rip the mask off the press' corrupt bargain with Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt.

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