Third Party & Independents Archives

News Affect

Many people have argued that by headlining all the bad news, and giving very little good news, it helps the enemy we are fighting.
Being given the bad news is not the problem… it’s the way it is reported.
The case has been made.

Does the media realize it?
Was the public paying attention?
Recently, FOX News' Steve Centanni and Olaf Wiig were taken hostage in Gaza. 'Kidnapped Journalists Recall Chilling Abduction' There was very little coverage about this. It was strange.
When others, usually non-reporters, were abducted we heard continuous stories about them.
This made them seem very important to those that took them. Did it cost any of them their lives?

Consider this about the Jill Carroll story: 'How To Cover a Kidnapping' by Jack Shafer

"On the day of the kidnapping, John Fiegener of Fox News wrote the e-mail list to say the press couldn't treat the Carroll story differently than other kidnappings, noting that the news had already hit the wires."

CNN had run the story on the day Jill Carroll was abducted.

Are reporters' lives more important than anyone elses'?

"Returning to the Carroll case, starving her kidnappers of information might save her life. However, that's also true in the case of a domestic abduction, and not many reporters would withhold the news of a kidnapping for very long based on that rationale." from 'The Carroll Kidnapping'

I don't know if John Fiegener has changed his mind, but it appears FOX News management believed that by making the kidnapping of their employees a major story, it could possibly get them killed.

Comparing kidnappings to the coverage of the War on Terror and the Iraq War.
Is there one?

A kidnapper can see the unimportance of their victim as a reason to release them, or they can simply slit their throat and throw them in a ditch somewhere. No one is certain the outcome will be a good one.

Hearing continuous stories about insurgents disrupting the progress in Iraq helps them. It fires them up. They, and the rest of the world, continue to hear how they are the hindrance that they want to be.
Our enemy knows how to play mind games and we are falling right into their trap.

Some of our leaders who hate Bush, and have complained incessantly about the Iraq War, are finally coming out and saying, 'But we have to finish the job. We can't simply pull out of Iraq.'
Bush haters and those trying to bring down the Republicans really need to choose their words more carefully. Their tactics will hurt ALL of us. Move on to the present and how to make the future better.

The media needs to get on the ball and start telling the stories so that they diminish the importance of the terrorists and insurgents.
Go ahead and tell about the car bomber who killed a dozen recruits BUT also tell the story about how life goes on.
Tell the story about people who are turning in the insurgents.
Let us know that a bomb blew up here, BUT a number of terrorists were picked up by police following a tip from the public over there.
Tell us more about the Muslims who denounce Bin Laden and terrorism.
If you have ever watched a documentary about Bin Laden you would see that he knew 'playing' the media was one of the most important tools in his arsenal. In some cases, more important than blowing something up.

The media is part of the story.
How the story is told is just as important as the story itself.
The media can help us win the fight and still report the bad news.
The media has a lot of power when it comes to victory or defeat.
Let's hope they use their power wisely. Their lives and jobs are at stake too.

Posted by Dawn at August 30, 2006 8:17 AM
Comments
Comment #178304
Let’s hope they use their power wisely. Their lives and jobs are at stake too.

The problem is they won’t.
The thing that gets me is the almost obvious glee that the media reports the bad news out of Iraq. And the almost obvious change in demeanor on the rare occasions when they do report something good.

Posted by: Ron Brown at August 30, 2006 1:49 PM
Comment #178305

Well said Dawn. The media biases leap out again and again. It has been that way so long that many do not realize it is so. Just received an email from a friend today. It was an article about Denzel Washington visiting a Military Medical Center in San Antonio. Without any fanfare he visited wounded soldiers and donated a substantial sum of money to help with housing families who have to be there.

Now I probably just missed this, and it may be old news, but I betcha it got almost no play in the media cause I was not aware of it. Whereas - had Cindy Sheehan protested at that facility - it would have led the 6 pm news on the major networks for three days.

Sad situation but a fact of life.

Posted by: Seminole 6 at August 30, 2006 1:53 PM
Comment #178308

Dawn,

“Recently, FOX News’ Steve Centanni and Olaf Wiig were taken hostage in Gaza. ‘Kidnapped Journalists Recall Chilling Abduction’ There was very little coverage about this. It was strange.”

No it wasn’t Dawn. They were Fox reporters.

To use Dan Rather’s favorite phrase when referring to conservatives or anything that didn’t adhere to his beliefs, the “-so called-” Mainstream Media, Fox is a fascist radical right wing Republican talking points talking heads and are, therefore, persona non grata…and if their reports are taken hostage…who cares?

That’s why there was very little coverage of their situation.

Posted by: Jim T at August 30, 2006 2:01 PM
Comment #178309

Sorry…

That should have read:

Accoring to…to use Dan Rather’s favorite phrase when referring to conservatives or anything that didn’t adhere to his beliefs… the “-so called-” Mainstream Media, Fox is a fascist radical right wing Republican talking points talking heads and are, therefore, persona non grata…and if their reports are taken hostage…who cares?

Posted by: Jim T at August 30, 2006 2:04 PM
Comment #178323

Dawn, you are right, something about the news is not getting through. For example, you refer to the insurgents. Well, you at least are not being kept informed, because what you call insurgents is actually Shiites getting payback against Sunnis and Sunnis retalliating out of defense. You know what that is called? Not an insurgency. A Civil War is what it is called.

Now follow this Republican logic. If we stay, the Civil War will be enhanced by both Sunnis and Shiites seeking to kick American forces out. If we leave, the Civil War will escalate. If we stay, and pursue sanctions against Iran, the Shiite led Iraqi Government will insist the U.S. leave. If we leave, the Iraqi - Iran alliance will strengten.

Republicans conclude from these facts that we have no choice but to stay the deadly costly course. Rational well informed folks, many of whom are now Republicans, say it will make little difference whether we stay or leave. Hence, logic dictates we leave and save American lives and billions of American tax dollars.

But, I understand Rummie and Cheney wanting to corrale their Republican constituents and shame them from following their reason and moral obligation to minimize our soldiers casualties and adding 100’s of billions to our national debt. But, you know, calling your own constitutents cowards and cut and runners, is not the path to reelection.

I would suggest you all replace Rove with someone who can read the hearts and minds of those 30 % of Republicans who have lost faith with their White House and Congressional representatives. Oh, yeah, I forgot. Winning hearts and minds is not in their bag of tricks. Oh, well.

Posted by: David R. Remer at August 30, 2006 3:48 PM
Comment #178373

“Being given the bad news is not the problem… it’s the way it is reported.”

Being given bad news, indeed, is not the problem—it’s being given no news or faux news written by administration hacks that’s the problem. Submerged in ‘He said, She said’ journalism, without challenging ludicrous assumptions and lies, without any investigation into government’s pronouncments and assumptions—that is the problem.

Posted by: Tim Crow at August 30, 2006 6:48 PM
Comment #178383

Perhaps if the journalists were white, blonde cheerleaders, FAUX News might have interrupted its JonBenet blackout to cover the story. It is a wonder the grief jockeys can still find ways to keep busy.

Posted by: phx8 at August 30, 2006 7:09 PM
Comment #178412

phx8,

You know very well that that scenario plays on ALL the networks.

Posted by: dawn at August 30, 2006 9:29 PM
Comment #178434

The wrong wing myth of “liberal media bias” has been disproven countless times, but they keep on repeating it. I guess they think that if you keep repeating the same lie over and over and over, eventually people will start believing it.

The wrong wing is paranoid, just like the leftists in the sixties. They think that everyone who isn’t with them must therefore be against them. As the leftists said, “You’re either part of the solution or part of the problem.” And as Dubya said, “You’re either with us or with the terrorists.” So, since the media is neutral, the wrong wing thinks it’s biased against them.

Make no mistake. The wrong wing’s real complaint is NOT that the media is biased. The wrong wing LIKES bias in the media. They WANT bias in the media. They just wanna make sure that it’s THEIR bias.

Posted by: ElliottBay at August 30, 2006 11:09 PM
Comment #178441

Dawn,
You were right to write about this topic. One thing is for sure, there is more to it than meets the eye. Israel bombed & invaded Lebanon over the kidnapping of two soldiers. Yet Hamas remained relatively quiet during the invasion & bombing of Lebanon; the West Bank was almost completely absent from the news. What happened? The media nearly ignored the FAUX reporter kidnappings, as far as I can tell. I channel surf through CNN, MSNBC, & FAUX, and they mentioned it only in passing. The newspaper for Oregon barely mentioned it. As for ABC, NBC, & CBS, I do not know. I have not watched them in years.

My guess is that everyone realized they needed the reporters more than they needed revenge.

The terrorists of Palestine and the terrorists of the Bush administration cannot spread fear unless the reporters help. It is that simple.

Posted by: phx8 at August 31, 2006 12:40 AM
Comment #178566

Elliot, poignantly and directly put.!!! Well said!!!

Posted by: David R. Remer at August 31, 2006 4:11 PM
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