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All content © 2002-2005 Anne Zook

August 29, 2008
What's this?

My, goodness. David Brooks, completely out of intelligent things to say, descends to mean-spirited and (less-forgiveably) unfunny whining.

I'm just saying. I know "the polls" tell us that McCain and Obama are neck-and-neck in the race? But I think that has more to do with corporate network desire for a long, profitable, and drama-filled race than it does with reality. Some of the defeatist "we've already lost it all so why not burn our bridges, too" rhetoric I've been reading for the last couple of weeks suggests that certain Righty Pundits have also seen the writing on the wall.

Posted by AnneZook at 01:26 PM | Comments (0)
Bad Language From Me

I've watched with interest, sympathy, and empathy, the rage that supporters and other women around the world o'blog have expressed over the misogynistic treatment of Hillary Clinton.

I have agreed with pretty much everything I've read. Criticize the woman on her policies, or her compromises, on her beliefs, or on her experience, but for god's sake shutthefuckup about the color of her clothes, the style of her hair, the timbre of her voice, and/or her private relationship with her husband.

Give us no more of your nitpicking on shows of emotion or the lack of the same. Ditto for the rest of the "coverage" we've seen that has failed to be about anything of substance.

The national "news" media is a disgraceful excuse for a "free press" and it's not surprising that the opposition has jumped on their every reference, trying to make hay out of nothing.

It is, therefore, with regret and even disgust that I'm witnessing the performance of the Lefter World O'Blog this morning.

So far, working my way through my daily list, I'm encountering mostly male-written or male-dominated blogs and the number of references I've seen to Palin's youth and attractiveness are starting to piss me off.

You can call her inexperienced because she is inexperienced, but shutthefuckup with the not-so-subtly coded inferences that, because she's attractive she must be stupid. Stop with the sly smirks and the little-boy oh, I'm so naughty sexual innuendo. Just. Shut up.

Criticize her on her record or her lack of the same. Criticize what she believes or doesn't believe.Criticize her on what she's done, or what she's failed to do.

But? One. More. Reference. To her sexual desirability? And I'm going to do something dreadful. To all of you.

Posted by AnneZook at 11:42 AM | Comments (6)
August 28, 2008
Oh, I See!

I tuned back in to CNN just in time to hear someone say that it's not the network's job to give the Democrats a "three-day infomercial."

That's why they won't shut up about the McCain campaign. They feel that uninterrupted exposure to a candidate's views or a Party's positions isn't really what the "news media" is supposed to provide.

So, I'm assuming that those watching next week's Republican convention wil be treated to a nearly unending discussion of the blasted podium? Interspersed with frequent coverage of what the Obama campaign thinks of what the McCain campaign is saying and equally frequent coverage of whatever Obama or Biden are doing or saying at that moment?

And that any time a Right-leaning interviewee tries to say something about what McCain believes in or stands for, they'll be interrupted for an important question about the decor?

And that Every. Single. Time. Someone starts a sentence with something that's happening in the Republican convention, they'll end it by discussing Obama?

CSPAN is doing something interesting about LBJ.

Posted by AnneZook at 12:40 PM | Comments (0)
Okay, then

They've gone all wonky on CSPAN.

They're airing a panel that includes Anthony Lake (Barack Obama for President Foreign Policy Adviser).

Fascinating.

(Am I in danger of becoming a geek?)

Posted by AnneZook at 10:28 AM | Comments (2)
OHMIGOD

She is talking about the stage again. She is obsessed with it.

Posted by AnneZook at 10:05 AM | Comments (0)
Lunacy

Two CNN anchors just started to disagree with each other, and then they abruptly changed the topic to Biden being introduced by his sons.

What is UP with this coverage?

Maybe it's the in-studio anchor? Every time the conversation goes negative on McCain, she changes the subject. (And there she goes about the podium again.)

Posted by AnneZook at 09:35 AM | Comments (2)
Stay Stupid!

Okay, I couldn't take it any longer. I'm "working from home" today, so I can watch some of the all-day convention coverage and see how it's all going down.

There have actually been moments when a couple of incompletely indoctrinated interviewees have tried to talk about matters of substance, but the news anchors on CNN have been successful, so far, in keeping the conversation on irrelevancies.

A minute ago one woman had to put her foot down firmly to make the interviewee talk about the backdrop of the stage instead of about issues.

Can someone please chase down CNN and smack them around a little?

Posted by AnneZook at 09:21 AM | Comments (0)
August 27, 2008
A grain or two of salt

It's interesting having the convention right here in our little town. Denver, while certainly a sizeable city, is small enough to let someone paying attention identify the differences between what shows up in the "news" and what really happened.

For instance, the 15,000 or whatever members of the "press" who showed up in town for the convention? Most of them came here eager to cover protests and riots and civil unrest. The kind of drama that makes good television and dramatic headlines.

And you know what? There are protests. And protesters. And really no drama or turmoil that hasn't been created by the over-preparation of the local and imported police forces. (Seriously, guys. Scale back on the riot gear a bit. And thin out those lines. If you weren't creating an impenetrable barrier of guns & shields, half those people would have dropped out of the march by now, in favor of breakfast and a cold drink at some nearby café.)

There's only one protest group that has its heart set on creating a turmoil, and they're only about 1000 strong. They're not really doing anything except standing around together sometimes, but they're getting the kind of press coverage you'd expect for a group of 10,000, well-organized and violent demonstrators.

They did manage to trick the cops into action the other night. While none of the protesters were really anxious to be the first to act, they were dying for the cops to start something so they could scream about how they were being all oppressed. They stood around in a park (to be fair, some of them were holding rocks) and enticed the cops into strolling through the crowd (in groups) (and full riot gear) until enough scuffling started that the cops felt justified in hauling a hundred or so of the group into custody.

No, I don't have any sympathy for that group. Why should I? Their stated aim is to "recreate 68" which is entirely lame. It suggests that their real goal is to get themselves in the history books. They're not struggling for any kind of peace or justice or equality. Just violence.

Anyhow. The media is playing it up like a major riot took place, which just isn't true. But, as I said before, the media is dying for some drama and they've having to take what they can get.

There's just not a lot of passionate protesting going on. We've had an anti-war group. You can't say they were protesting the Democrats, though. They were just taking advantage of the publicity to let the DNC and the viewers of random networks know that Denver contains people who are anti-war.

There was some kind of pro-Hillary march, but most of the "if I can't have Hillary, I'll have no one (or McCain)" stuff is smoke and mirrors. I can't imagine there are many people who honestly feel that way, but the Right has taken the idea and the "proof" of a couple of random television interviews with disgruntled HC supporters and they're doing their best, by pushing it at the press and the broadcast media, to make a Movement out of it.

I'm thinking there are a number of people dumb enough to fall for a trick like that, too. Some of them will believe it's real of course. I know of supporters who are worriedly clinging onto the Hillary for President bandwagon--aware that they're probably being used by the Right but not quite sure enough to be willing to look like they're "abandoning" Clinton.

I have no idea why they're afraid that acting like mature adults will be a problem. It's politics, okay? You win some, you lose some, but you never pee in a pool you might want to swim in later. She lost the race for the nomination. From what I can tell, she's taking it like a grown-up. Her supporters need to do the same thing.

I don't tell them that, though. None of my business. (Anyhow, some of them are my friends.)

And then there's the "news" factor. A convention alternates between the star turns and hours of posturing and speechifying by lesser lights.

Some of the news teams seem to have done their homework and are prepared for a three-day stint when they'll have to provide their own drama, but others, not so much. One of the Unprepared wound up interviewing a water bottle yesterday morning. How unprofessional do you have to be not to come with prepared material you can use during the slower moments?

Or, you know, just because the Big Names aren't on stage at the moment, that doesn't mean you can't cover whatever is going on. If you're going to cover the convention, cover it. Broadcast your coverage only when the convention is in session, and then cover what happens. You might not find it interesting, but it's not being run to amuse you.

Mostly, though, I think that a sane convention, run by adults who are focused on the business at hand, isn't riveting material for news broadcasters. They want sound bites and visual pizzazz. All they're getting is serious people discussing serious problems.

In fact, the national networks seem to spend as much or more time talking to/about Republicans as they do on the convention. It will be interesting to see if they give Democrats the same amount of coverage during the Republican convention, don't you think?

I mean, I'm not saying that the press is biased or anything. But?

On Sunday a story broke about the cops arresting a guy in town to target Mr. Obama. He tried to check into a hotel while he was toting guns & ammo. Then they talked about two men--and then it was four men, arrested at a local hotel. And about the armament they were carrying. (Guns aside, they must have been reasonably serious about it all. I mean, one of them jumped out of a sixth floor window, trying to escape the cops.)

The next day's front page headline on the local Rocky Mountain News newspaper? McCain Target of Threats

A prisoner sent him a mean letter with "powder" in it.

So, you know, don't believe what you head about secret bias in the press. They're generally quite openly in support of the Right.

More locally, a local Radio Station Person has embarrassed the entire city. The RSP managed to buy, bribe, or steal a news anchor's room number out of a hotel employee and called the news anchor at some ungodly hour of the morning, trying to bully an interview out of him.

Because, how obnoxious and counter-productive is that?

I mean, what kind of lame-assed loser thinks they're going to get an interview that way? The RSP called the news anchor at the crack of dawn, put the poor guy on the air, and then tried to use that "we're on the air and people are listening" thing to bully him into setting an interview time. If I were the news anchor? I'd give an interview to every radio station in town except that one. On the other hand, what seems clear is that the RSP did not want an interview. He wanted an incident.

I hope the hotel employee/employees who wind up getting fired for handing out confidential information feel like they made a good bargain.

And that's about all I have to say about the convention at this point. Except to admit that I bitterly regret that my computer at the office has no sound card. If it did, I'd be streaming some of the all-day coverage.

Posted by AnneZook at 10:23 AM | Comments (0)