The Ingraham Effect: "Laying the Smacketh Down on MSM"
"I don't know how you can cover a war and not cover the war, itself; and not all this reconstruction- that's not a news story, is it?"- Chris MatthewsLaura Ingraham made the trip to Iraq in February. This past week, she had gone on the Today Show and broke lances with James Carville and host David Gregory. On The O'Reilly Factor, she discusses her Today Show appearance. It obviously struck a raw nerve with MSM, as all week long, I've been hearing the mantra, "Don't attack the messenger" because we aren't liking the message. Methinks they doth protest too much. What MSM doesn't seem to understand (one of the things they don't get, at any rate), is that we are angry at the messenger not because of the message; but because they are delivering only half the message, and in a language that is mired in quag. What I mean by that is, journalists color their reportings with their own bias. You can tell in many cases, when the frontpage straight news begins sounding like an op-ed piece; when a writer is anti-war or pro-victory by the words and tone he chooses; and the context he puts a news event into. The event itself often doesn't demoralize; it's the gloom-and-doom language of the reporter that can influence a reader to think a certain way. So, then that brings me to this important question: Does the American media have a responsibility to help win the war? What is the moral responsibility here, when impartiality gets lost anyway in subtle and not-so-subtle agenda-driven news-telling?
Since Monday, old media has been scrambling on the defensive, like an anthill that's been kicked over. Keith Olbermann on MSNBC ripped into Laura Ingraham; but Laura herself has been on a tear all week long in her morning radio show: Click once....click twice.
On Tuesday, President Bush rightly made mention of how the insurgents do work the media ("they're capable of blowing up innocent life so it ends up on your tv show") ; in fact, their life expectancy depends upon it! On Wednesday, President Bush himself, was asked by Gayle Taylor about the negative coverage by the media. He talked about how we have a free press to do whatever they want (despite those claiming President Bush is attacking the media); and encouraged people to check out alternative media outlets that do report the good (including a plug for blogs).
The following morning on The Today Show, after the Ingraham appearance, The Today Show tried to save face with Richard Engel in Baghdad doing a piece, "Blaming the Messenger/Missing the Good in Iraq?". Engel actually confirms for the Today Show audience that from his perspective, the insurgents are sophisticated to play the media. He does however feel that the security issue is the story in Iraq.
And then the next day after that....could it be that the Ingraham Effect is taking place? What do we get from The Today Show? Some good news! Coincidence? Maybe. But David Gregory sounded suspiciously like he and Katie Couric were trying too hard.
Wednesday also saw Hugh Hewitt and Michael Yon on CNN, along with Michael Ware (click, and tell me this Aussie embed doesn't have an agenda) and CNN's Nick Robertson. When the they lost the satellite feed to Yon, Hugh laid his cards out bluntly and said, the media is losing this war and getting Americans killed, as the insurgents are "playing the media like a bongo drum" (one of Hugh's catchphrases).
Hugh Hewitt links to relevant Radioblogger transcripts and audio interviews and others. More and more.
YankeeMom here and here.
Casting Pearls before Swine
SkyePuppy on Hugh Hewitt's CNN appearance.
Marie gives her two cents on the media getting Ingrahammered.
Articles of interest and relevance to this post:
Lorie Byrd's article, The War about more than hurt feelings.
USA Today: Reporters in Iraq under fire there, and from critics
A Soldier's Perspective sees the progress.