There's no such thing as the perfect truth. We're subjective beings no matter how hard we pretend not to be. Still, there is a difference between FOX news pretending to be non-partisan and the blatant fabrication or omission of stories in order to fool the American public. Tabloids fib to sell papers. After all, "inquiring minds want to know." Mainstream newspapers and broadcasters have a more serious agenda. And until we start calling them on it, the line between fiction and news will continue to blur.
Amy Chozick is a freelance writer living in New York City. Amy is the editor of DISPATCH and AMEDIA Uncensored columnist.
© Copyright 2003 Amy Chozick
"[There's McCain's] portrayal of [Obama] as precious, self-infatuated, and effete: 'Only celebrities like Barack Obama go to the gym three times a day, demand MET-RX chocolate roasted-peanut protein bars and bottles of a hard-to-find organic brew—Black Forest Berry Honest Tea and worry about the price of arugula,' wrote campaign manager Rick Davis in an e-mail announcing 'Celeb.' And thus the emphasis on Obama’s rock-star persona, designed to engender envy and contempt among the swath of Middle America for which hipness is no virtue but a sign of pretension."
"McCain isn't stupid. As he's surrounded himself with senior gay male advisors since at least the 1990s, McCain is usually careful about overt gay-bashing (though he did promise the religious right a few weeks ago that he'd be more publicly anti-gay, and just last week said he didn't think gay people should be able to adopt children (he then backtracked, kind of). Instead, McCain and his people are attempting to define Obama as 'gay' by describing him as the stereotypical gay man. Yesterday, a McCain spokesman described Obama as fussy and prone to hysterics. A few days earlier, we were told that Obama was 'flitting' around Europe. And before that, a GOP operative called Obama 'a fancy lad.' Also, who is Obama compared to in the latest McCain ad? (An ad that independent fact-checkers say is totally false.) Two women, and kind of ditzy women at that - Britney Spears and Paris Hilton. Let's review. A fussy, fancy lad who flits around Europe, is prone to hysteria, and reminds you of ditzy blonde chicks. Sorry, but that's a stereotypical gay guy. And as I said, McCain knows his gay guys. He's surrounded by them."
"The underlying premise of the modern conservative movement is that the entire Democratic party consists of a bunch of fags and dykes who are both too effeminate and too masculine to properly lead the nation. Coulter says it out loud. Dowd hints at it broadly. And the entire press corps giggles and swoons at this shallow, sophomoric concept like a bunch of junior high pom pom girls."*
"Obama? How can you support an Illinois lawyer with only two years of experience in national office?
Oh, it worked out pretty well last time."
The racial fantasy factor in this presidential campaign is out of control. It was at work in that New Yorker cover that caused such a stir. (Mr. Obama in Muslim garb with the American flag burning in the fireplace.) It’s driving the idea that Barack Obama is somehow presumptuous, too arrogant, too big for his britches — a man who obviously does not know his place.
There's way too much hand-wringing on this thread. The WSJ article is actually a good sign: it shows how desperate the opposition is.
"In the middle of John McCain's dopey Britney & Paris attack ad, the announcer gravely asks of Barack Obama: 'Is He Ready to Lead?' An equally good question is whether McCain is ready to lead. For a man who will turn 72 this month, he's a surprisingly immature politician—erratic, impulsive and subject to peer pressure from the last knucklehead who offers him advice. The youthful insouciance that for many years has helped McCain charm reporters like me is now channeled into an ad that one GOP strategist labeled 'juvenile,' another termed 'childish' and McCain's own mother called 'stupid.' The Obama campaign's new mantra is that McCain is 'an honorable man running a dishonorable campaign.' Lame is more like it. And out of sync with the real guy.
...the negativity may well boomerang. 'It's hard to imagine America responding to "small ball" when we have all these problems,' says John Weaver, McCain's chief strategist in 2000 who was pushed out of the campaign last year.
...I misread McCain. On the night of the 2000 South Carolina primary, I was in his hotel suite and watched Cindy weeping over what Rove and his goons did. Her husband was plenty mad, too. Now he's got Rove's protégé, Steve Schmidt, running his campaign. Eight years ago, McCain profusely apologized for playing racial politics in South Carolina by backing efforts to fly the Confederate flag at the state capital. Now he's content to see race crowd out the economy in the battle for precious media oxygen. McCain argues that Obama opened himself up to attack by saying, "They're gonna say he doesn't look like those other presidents on the dollar bills." But if his campaign hadn't leaped on that Obama comment, it would have been another. Accusing the other guy of playing the race card is a not terribly subtle form of, well, playing the race card—and the victim."
"Barack Hussein Obama is a really uppity nigger for thinking that with the little experience he has, that he has a right to the Presidency of the United States of AMERICA."
Jerry: "People think I'm gay....Yeah, 'cuz I'm single, I'm thin and I'm neat.
Elaine: And you get along well with women.
....I am not gay. I am, however, thin, single and neat. Sometimes when someone is thin, single and neat people assume they are gay because that is a stereotype. They normally don't think of gay people as fat, sloppy and married. Although I'm sure there are, I don't want to perpetuate the stereotype. I'm sure they are the minority though within the gay community. They're probably discriminated against because of that, people say to them ‘Y'know Joe, I enjoy being gay with you but I think think it's about time, y'know that you got in shape, tucked the shirt in and lost the wife’. But if people are even going to assume that people that are neat are gay, maybe instead of doin' this: ‘Y'know I think Joe might be a little... [waves hand back and forth]’, they should vacuum: ‘Y'know I think Joe might be >vroom<>vrooom<>
"The trend of the tracking polls hasn't been good of late. Rasmussen, which is a quite reputable poll, has Obama and McCain tied today -- and with leaners (basically people who haven't made up their minds, but are forced to choose for the poll), McCain is up by one point.
...Rasmussen's poll today sends one message to John McCain. His disgusting, sleazy, personal attacks on Obama are working. We can now expect a lot more, and there's little reason to think that they won't be just as effective next time. Just very, very disturbing."*
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