The MSM — mis-educating the masses

In the old days — pre-internet — politicians were able to get away with a lot of lies.  This wasn’t because they lied better than they do now.  It was because it was more difficult to suss out the truth and, even if one was successful in doing so, it was very challenging, if the liar was a media favorite, to get the media to report on the story.  That has changed, of course.  The internet means that, sometimes within hours of a public figure’s lie, the truth comes streaming down the pipeline.  Even if the old media doesn’t want to report it, it nevertheless becomes public knowledge.

That being the case, one has to wonder why Obama and Hillary lie and lie and lie and lie.  Hillary, perhaps, can be forgiven because she came of age politically before the new media took over, by which time bad, dishonest habits had set in.  But Obama doesn’t have that excuse, because his political rise came after the new media was already in place.  Since these are both intelligent, goal-oriented people, one would think that they would have a little auto-edit in their brain that reminds them not to talk about sniper fire, not to deny contacts with Tony Rezko, not to pretend that they spent 20 years resolutely ignoring their minister’s sermons, and really, really not to pretend to have gun experience.  As it is, one can easily assume that they are either pathological liars, who are therefore incapable of stopping themselves, or that they are so arrogant about their virtues, and so dismissive of the intelligence of ordinary Americans, that they truly think all those lies won’t have any effect on their images.

At this point, I can see that you’re all asking yourselves, what does this post have to do with the post-title, “The MSM — mis-educating the masses?”  Well, the post title goes to the third possible theory about the chronic lying coming from Hillary and Obama — which is that they’re still counting on the media to run interference for them.  To those of us who live their intellectual lives in the internet, it’s inconceivable that people might still rely solely on the old media for their news, but it is true.  And as Ed Morrissey has pointed out in a post about McCain’s response to Obama’s “bitter” speech, “I think it wouldn’t hurt to point out that most of the press have focused on the only portion of the statement that wasn’t terribly objectionable, and that neither they nor Obama have spoken about casting Midwestern voters as bible-thumping, gun-hugging bigots.”

As it happens, I got direct evidence yesterday that, at least as to some voters, the MSM approach is working.  I was speaking with a liberal friend who feels very informed, because she reads the local paper and watches the news on TV.  She could not understand why I was put off by Obama’s speech.  When I explained that I, along with many others, found it offensive that he contended that economic hardship turned people into “bible-thumbing, gun-hugging,” xenophobic idiots, she categorically denied that he had said any such thing:  “I heard him on the news.  All he said was that places like Pennsylvania have suffered under George Bush’s terrible policies.”  When I assured her that he had said much more than that, she continued in her denial — and refused to look up the full quotation.  In other words, as to that one liberal, the old media had very effectively run interference, leaving her believing that Obama had done no more than point out an economic reality that the “worst President ever” caused, only to be lambasted by radical conservatives.

This absolute refusal to acknowledge facts or to contemplate their import seems to be endemic to liberals.  I got a lovely example in my own home the other day.  Mr. Bookworm and I were sitting on the couch. He got up to brush his teeth, and then returned to the couch. Realizing he’d left the light on, he stood up again, which is when I discovered on the couch, directly under the spot on which his right arm had rested, a long smear of toothpaste that hadn’t been there before. Investigation revealed that he also had toothpaste on his right arm. Toothpaste is very hard to get off of couches, so I said to him, “Hey, you got toothpaste on the couch!”

What was so fascinating was that Mr. Bookworm resolutely denied that he had anything to do with the toothpaste. He didn’t deny that he had just brushed his teeth. Nor did he deny that the toothpaste first made its appearance on the couch after he returned from brushing his teeth. Instead, he kept saying, over and over again, “That can’t have happened. I rinsed all of the toothpaste off of me.”

Right now, all evidence to the contrary, the Democratic candidates and their MSM enablers are resolutely denying that there is any toothpaste on the couch.  Before the internet revolution, this approach would have worked as to all voters.  Now, as we move deeper and deeper into the internet revolution, it is still working with some voters, although I suspect their numbers will continue to decline.

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  • Allen

    Perhaps this might appear off topic, but I believe it goes to the heart of the matter, from a tangent. What I find interesting about this is that the existing old media is complaining about “partisanship” when their version of partisanship is challenged.

    The freedom of speech is all about the ability to be partisan. I have come to believe that many of the folks, sadly, who advocate rights are actually anti-rights. An example, all rights espoused in the Bill of Rights are for indiduals, except the 2nd. The Fairness Doctrine? If that doesn’t creep you out, nothing will. If government is the determinant of rights, you have none.

    I have always found this instructive: The Constitution is a living and breathing document, except when there is a precedent from a previous court decision that the advocates of the “living” Constitution agree with.

    The civil rights changes, women’s suffragette changes, occurred because of citizens saying “I’m in,” not government action.

    That is what the existing media is trying to sell. They are part and parcel of being the deciders of how the nation should be, as opposed to reporting.

  • Marguerite

    Your friend, BW, must recognize that you are an intelligent woman who would not tell her a falsehood – especially a falsehood that would be so easily disproven by her going to the internet source and reading for herself Obama’s own words. Therefore, she at some level must know that she is wrong but can’t face it. To acknowledge facts that don’t comport with your own long-held beliefs is very difficult because if you are wrong about one thing . . . just think where that may lead! Stirring up one’s own comfortable nest has a domino effect on many relationships and it’s just easier for most not to even begin to go there. I remember my mom was a liberal and when I would make a point on some issue that she could not refute, she would slowly start to leave the room rather than have the discussion. Somehow all our kids (two in their 30s and one 42) are conservatives and I can’t remember doing one thing to make this happen except to let them have their say and never leave the room.

  • Tap

    I’ve gotten the same response from each and every liberal I’ve spoken with about this with. ‘What’s wrong with his saying people are bitter? They are!’

    And so I point out those other lovely parts. The response? But…no, he just said they are bitter!

    Not ONE has acknowledged any other content in Obama’s speech.

  • Ivan Ivanovich

    “I suspect their numbers will continue to decline.”
    I’m not so sure about that. There are still many people who are not on the internet, or log on and do nothing but IM, YouTube, or read the DailyKOS. How many read the Drudge Report the morning after the forged TANG documents appeared on 60 Minutes and followed the links all the way to Dr. Joseph Newcomer’s explaination of fonts and how the doc’s where done in MSWord? Not many, I bet. How many still beleive the documents are authentic? Plenty! Let’s just hope they are not on the jury for Dan Rather’s lawsuit. The new Orwellian Doublespeak is “Forged, but true”. With 44 million Americans, and 47% of a Detroiters, functionaly illiterate don’t count on the numbers falling soon.

  • jj

    I’ll quote Allen: “perhaps this might appear off topic,” but… he brushes his forearms?

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