Sunday, 29 July 2007

BRENT BOZELL ON THE "YOUTUBE DEBATE"

Ken Berwitz

Did you see the "youtube" debate on CNN, during which Democratic candidates were asked a series of questions - some of them bizarre, some from bizarre people, a few hitting for the daily double by being both? 

Did you happen to notice that the questions had a certain ideological tilt to them?

Well, Brent Bozell did, and his column about it this week is right on the money.  Here it is:.

CNNs Slanted Slice of America

It looks like we should be very careful what we ask for.

On Tuesday night, CNN did this or at least said it was doing this. The network teamed up with the video site YouTube to host a debate of the Democratic contenders and pretenders in South Carolina. This time the primary questioners were amateur video-makers who submitted their questions to YouTube, competing for CNN air time like a political version of American Idol. CNN puffed itself up as groundbreaking for this effort, suggesting it was offering real questions from real people.

The questioners CNN presented may have given the debate a different flavor, but what the consumer was really left with was the aftertaste of too much soda bubbles and syrup. It was a dumbed-down debate, with center stage dedicated to bouts of silliness, shameless attention-seeking, and emotionally manipulative questions.

Rather than an objective discussion about gay rights there was the question from two lesbians wondering why they couldnt get married. Rather than a factual question about Iraq there was the angry plea from the grieving father of a fallen soldier that we withdraw before he lost another son. This kind of moderation might be enjoyable to watch as an alternative to the norm like watching the heart-wrenching or embarrassing tryouts of Idol wannabes but it wasnt exactly the high-faluting rebirth of Athens.

These interviewers wanted to be taken seriously, but many were just buffoons who made fools of the network that likes to bill itself as the most trusted name in news. CNN selected hammy Tennessee hillbillies looking like Hee Haw rejects and a cartoon snowman speaking in a falsetto voice about global warming as presidential candidate questioners, along with several lame musical interludes where the inquirers displayed their questions on crudely written cue cards.

Is this really the state of affairs in our democratic experiment, circa 2007? If so, God help us all.

There was a more serious concern for the public watching this CNN spectacle. Every time objective networks claim to seek the voice of the American people, they seem to think that 75 or 80 percent of Americans are squarely on the political left of the spectrum, people who think Dennis Kucinich-think is in the mainstream. Questions from the left dominated the CNN proceedings, lamenting the Democrats slowness on Iraq withdrawal, honoring gay marriage, and scrapping everything George W. Bush ever proposed.

Some questions consisted of tired, and thoroughly false liberal attack lines that would warm a Democrats heart, as in asking how race and class skewed the response to Hurricane Katrina, with the insulting assumption that President Bush said Oh, its just black people. Take your time responding. Predictably, this insulting question drew an equally truth-challenged response from Sen. Chris Dodd: The American president had almost no response whatsoever to the people of that city, New Orleans. Where were the CNN fact checkers? Bush signed a $51 billion aid package within ten days.

Some might say we shouldnt be shocked by these loaded inquiries because it was, after all, a debate among and for partisan Democrats. But if so, CNN shouldnt pretend this to be the collective voice of America. It simply cant have it both ways. But CNN never admitted that slant. CNN might claim that theres a left-wing tilt in the number of submissions that they received because of the partisan interest. But thats no excuse for CNN to skew the proceedings so dramatically and leave the impression that the people out there think Ted Kennedys way too conservative.

CNN tipped viewers off to its ideological direction when it continuously praised all the passionate and thoughtful submissions in preview segments leading up to the debate. When CNN aired environmental questions, they came from parents holding children panicking about the global-warming menace. When it aired health-care questions, the questioners wanted to know why government subsidies are so inadequate. When it aired faith questions, they were from people scandalized by too much old-time religion in our politics.

The Republicans will also subject themselves to the CNN-YouTube bubble machine on a Monday night in September. They will be foolish to expect a similar treatment.

Its rare for the liberal TV news networks to conduct a town-hall presidential debate that even splits the questions down the middle ideologically. Charlie Gibson did it in the second Bush-Kerry debate in 2004. Now that debate, with its simple one-for-you and one-for-you, seemed strangely groundbreaking.  .

I don 't always agree with Mr. Bozell, not by a long shot.  But when he's got a point, he's got a point.  And in this case, he is dead-on accurate.

Let's see if CNN decides to treat Republicans equivalently, by stacking the debate with rightward questions from rightward people.  

Wanna bet on that?  I didn't think so.


RAW UNADULTERATED ANTI-SEMITISM

Ken Berwitz

Over the years, millions of people (that's no typo, estimates are over two million) have been slaughtered in Sudan.  Mostly they have been Christians and Animists who would not convert to Islam on the spot.  More recently, hundreds of thousands of others have died because of the endless, mindless, deathly violence that seems to be the national pastime in this sorry excuse for a country.

So who's fault is that?  I'll give you three choices:  The man in the moon, Kris Kringle and Jews.  Which these three do you figure Sudan is blaming?  Here's a clue, courtesy of  www.ynetnews.com:

.

Sudan: Jews behind Darfur conflict

Sudanese defense minister says '24 Jewish organizations fueling conflict in Darfur'

Yaakov Lappin

Sudan's defense minister, Abdel Rahim Mohamed Hussein, has accused "24 Jewish organizations" of "fueling the conflict in Darfur" last week in an interview with a Saudi newspaper.

 

Hussein was interviewed during an official state-visit to the Saudi kingdom last week.

 

A journalist from Saudi Arabia's Okaz newspaper asked Hussein: "Some people are talking about the penetration of Jewish organizations in Darfur and that there is no conflict there?"

 

"The Darfur issue is being fuelled by 24 Jewish organizations, who are making the largest amount of noise over the issue, and using the Holocaust in their campaigning," the Sudanese defense minister replied.

 

Hussein added that the Darfur conflict was driven by "friction between farmers and herders and shepherds. Among the biggest problems is that of water, which is used to exploit the differences and fuel the conflict."

 

"Are these Jewish groups supporting (the rebels) financially?," the interviewer from Okaz asked Hussein.

 

"Yes, they provide political and material support through their control over the media and across American and British circles," Hussein said, adding that Jewish groups were using "all means to fuel these conflicts."

 

He added that Western reports of 200,000 people dying in Sudan were false, and said: "We talk about 9,000 dead as a result of either government or rebel actions."

 

'We came to Israel to look for a better place'

Several days ago, Sudan's Interior Minister, Zubair Bashir Taha, lashed out at Sudanese refuees who had sought asylum in Israel, and accused "Isaeli authorities of encouraging the Sudanese refugees to come to their country."

 

 

He added that his ministry was "very confused" by Sudanese citizens who came to Israel."

 

The Sudan Tribune quoted a Sudanese refugee as telling al-Jazeera television: "We were surprised when we came here. We met good people, who welcomed us and gave us food. We feel that we are extremely happy. We hope that the Israeli government would find a solution for us and our children. We came here to look for a better place."

 

Meanwhile, in the US, a number of Jewish organizations have attempted to raise awareness over the plight of Sudanese citizens who face mass killings and ethnic cleansing from the Sudanese government. Some 20 Jewish organizations joined the 'Save Darfur Coalition,' along with other religious communities and American civil rights groups.  .

 

And that's the way it goes.  If you assure people, from the first day they are educable, that Jews are responsible for every bad thing in the world, there is no problem in blaming all bad things on Jews.  It is ingrained in those people.  Even when Jews are not there and have nothing to do with anything, it will still work like a charm.

That is raw, unadulterated anti-semitism. 

Hitler taught us that a bogeyman can be created, and blamed for, a country's failings.  He used Jews (and he was hardly the first). 

Sickeningly, all too many Muslim countries - Sudan very much among them - are perfectly willing to learn from and emulate him. 

It never ends, does it?


RAW UNADULTERATED ANTI-SEMITISM

Ken Berwitz

Over the years, millions of people (that's no typo, estimates are over two million) have been slaughtered in Sudan.  Mostly they have been Christians and Animists who would not convert to Islam on the spot.  More recently, hundreds of thousands of others have died because of the endless, mindless, deathly violence that seems to be the national pastime in this sorry excuse for a country.

So who's fault is that?  I'll give you three choices:  The man in the moon, Kris Kringle and Jews.  Which these three do you figure Sudan is blaming?  Here's a clue, courtesy of  www.ynetnews.com:

.

Sudan: Jews behind Darfur conflict

Sudanese defense minister says '24 Jewish organizations fueling conflict in Darfur'

Yaakov Lappin

Sudan's defense minister, Abdel Rahim Mohamed Hussein, has accused "24 Jewish organizations" of "fueling the conflict in Darfur" last week in an interview with a Saudi newspaper.

 

Hussein was interviewed during an official state-visit to the Saudi kingdom last week.

 

A journalist from Saudi Arabia's Okaz newspaper asked Hussein: "Some people are talking about the penetration of Jewish organizations in Darfur and that there is no conflict there?"

 

"The Darfur issue is being fuelled by 24 Jewish organizations, who are making the largest amount of noise over the issue, and using the Holocaust in their campaigning," the Sudanese defense minister replied.

 

Hussein added that the Darfur conflict was driven by "friction between farmers and herders and shepherds. Among the biggest problems is that of water, which is used to exploit the differences and fuel the conflict."

 

"Are these Jewish groups supporting (the rebels) financially?," the interviewer from Okaz asked Hussein.

 

"Yes, they provide political and material support through their control over the media and across American and British circles," Hussein said, adding that Jewish groups were using "all means to fuel these conflicts."

 

He added that Western reports of 200,000 people dying in Sudan were false, and said: "We talk about 9,000 dead as a result of either government or rebel actions."

 

'We came to Israel to look for a better place'

Several days ago, Sudan's Interior Minister, Zubair Bashir Taha, lashed out at Sudanese refuees who had sought asylum in Israel, and accused "Isaeli authorities of encouraging the Sudanese refugees to come to their country."

 

 

He added that his ministry was "very confused" by Sudanese citizens who came to Israel."

 

The Sudan Tribune quoted a Sudanese refugee as telling al-Jazeera television: "We were surprised when we came here. We met good people, who welcomed us and gave us food. We feel that we are extremely happy. We hope that the Israeli government would find a solution for us and our children. We came here to look for a better place."

 

Meanwhile, in the US, a number of Jewish organizations have attempted to raise awareness over the plight of Sudanese citizens who face mass killings and ethnic cleansing from the Sudanese government. Some 20 Jewish organizations joined the 'Save Darfur Coalition,' along with other religious communities and American civil rights groups.  .

 

And that's the way it goes.  If you assure people, from the first day they are educable, that Jews are responsible for every bad thing in the world, there is no problem in blaming all bad things on Jews.  It is ingrained in those people.  Even when Jews are not there and have nothing to do with anything, it will still work like a charm.

That is raw, unadulterated anti-semitism. 

Hitler taught us that a bogeyman can be created, and blamed for, a country's failings.  He used Jews (and he was hardly the first). 

Sickeningly, all too many Muslim countries - Sudan very much among them - are perfectly willing to learn from and emulate him. 

It never ends, does it?


BRENT BOZELL ON THE "YOUTUBE DEBATE"

Ken Berwitz

Did you see the "youtube" debate on CNN, during which Democratic candidates were asked a series of questions - some of them bizarre, some from bizarre people, a few hitting for the daily double by being both? 

Did you happen to notice that the questions had a certain ideological tilt to them?

Well, Brent Bozell did, and his column about it this week is right on the money.  Here it is:.

CNNs Slanted Slice of America

It looks like we should be very careful what we ask for.

On Tuesday night, CNN did this or at least said it was doing this. The network teamed up with the video site YouTube to host a debate of the Democratic contenders and pretenders in South Carolina. This time the primary questioners were amateur video-makers who submitted their questions to YouTube, competing for CNN air time like a political version of American Idol. CNN puffed itself up as groundbreaking for this effort, suggesting it was offering real questions from real people.

The questioners CNN presented may have given the debate a different flavor, but what the consumer was really left with was the aftertaste of too much soda bubbles and syrup. It was a dumbed-down debate, with center stage dedicated to bouts of silliness, shameless attention-seeking, and emotionally manipulative questions.

Rather than an objective discussion about gay rights there was the question from two lesbians wondering why they couldnt get married. Rather than a factual question about Iraq there was the angry plea from the grieving father of a fallen soldier that we withdraw before he lost another son. This kind of moderation might be enjoyable to watch as an alternative to the norm like watching the heart-wrenching or embarrassing tryouts of Idol wannabes but it wasnt exactly the high-faluting rebirth of Athens.

These interviewers wanted to be taken seriously, but many were just buffoons who made fools of the network that likes to bill itself as the most trusted name in news. CNN selected hammy Tennessee hillbillies looking like Hee Haw rejects and a cartoon snowman speaking in a falsetto voice about global warming as presidential candidate questioners, along with several lame musical interludes where the inquirers displayed their questions on crudely written cue cards.

Is this really the state of affairs in our democratic experiment, circa 2007? If so, God help us all.

There was a more serious concern for the public watching this CNN spectacle. Every time objective networks claim to seek the voice of the American people, they seem to think that 75 or 80 percent of Americans are squarely on the political left of the spectrum, people who think Dennis Kucinich-think is in the mainstream. Questions from the left dominated the CNN proceedings, lamenting the Democrats slowness on Iraq withdrawal, honoring gay marriage, and scrapping everything George W. Bush ever proposed.

Some questions consisted of tired, and thoroughly false liberal attack lines that would warm a Democrats heart, as in asking how race and class skewed the response to Hurricane Katrina, with the insulting assumption that President Bush said Oh, its just black people. Take your time responding. Predictably, this insulting question drew an equally truth-challenged response from Sen. Chris Dodd: The American president had almost no response whatsoever to the people of that city, New Orleans. Where were the CNN fact checkers? Bush signed a $51 billion aid package within ten days.

Some might say we shouldnt be shocked by these loaded inquiries because it was, after all, a debate among and for partisan Democrats. But if so, CNN shouldnt pretend this to be the collective voice of America. It simply cant have it both ways. But CNN never admitted that slant. CNN might claim that theres a left-wing tilt in the number of submissions that they received because of the partisan interest. But thats no excuse for CNN to skew the proceedings so dramatically and leave the impression that the people out there think Ted Kennedys way too conservative.

CNN tipped viewers off to its ideological direction when it continuously praised all the passionate and thoughtful submissions in preview segments leading up to the debate. When CNN aired environmental questions, they came from parents holding children panicking about the global-warming menace. When it aired health-care questions, the questioners wanted to know why government subsidies are so inadequate. When it aired faith questions, they were from people scandalized by too much old-time religion in our politics.

The Republicans will also subject themselves to the CNN-YouTube bubble machine on a Monday night in September. They will be foolish to expect a similar treatment.

Its rare for the liberal TV news networks to conduct a town-hall presidential debate that even splits the questions down the middle ideologically. Charlie Gibson did it in the second Bush-Kerry debate in 2004. Now that debate, with its simple one-for-you and one-for-you, seemed strangely groundbreaking.  .

I don 't always agree with Mr. Bozell, not by a long shot.  But when he's got a point, he's got a point.  And in this case, he is dead-on accurate.

Let's see if CNN decides to treat Republicans equivalently, by stacking the debate with rightward questions from rightward people.  

Wanna bet on that?  I didn't think so.


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