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"Le coeur a ses raisons que la raison ne connait point. French. Pascal. The heart has its reasons, whereof reason knows nothing."— Madeleine L'Engle

Saturday, October 02, 2004

MSNBC - The Race is On

A new Newsweek national telephone poll of over 1000 registered voters, shows Kerry ahead. Now that’s a bounce. Even if it evaporates in a week, it shows the potential and volatility in the race. From MSNBC.com:
The Race is On -Oct. 2 - In the first national telephone poll using a fresh sample, NEWSWEEK found the race now statistically tied among all registered voters, 47 percent of whom say they would vote for Kerry and 45 percent for George W. Bush in a three-way race.

The New York Times > Opinion > Op-Ed Columnist: Iraq: Politics or Policy?

The New York Times > Opinion > Op-Ed Columnist: Iraq: Politics or Policy?
Friedman returns and focuses on policy rather than the political horserace. What a concept.

See Bush Debate. See Him Squirm

See Bush Debate. See Him Squirm
And now Businessweek speaks the truth.

National Review Editor Speaks The Truth About Election 2004 & Debate #1

Okay, the world didn't change overnight because of a single debate. Nonetheless, it is important to give credit when it's due. And Senator Kerry deserves a great deal of credit right now, especially for making a conflicted agnostic like myself believe in resurrection.

Let's say you think it's important to at least hear a different perspectives. You scan a variety of political news magazines, some left leaning (the Nation), some right (National Review, the Weekly Standard). In the conservative pubs, amongst the usual Kerry condemnations, you would find a few surprises. Most important, you'd find that even some of the staunchest, most serious, most conservative political analysts in the country are conceding Kerry's strength and Bush's weakness in this initial debate.

Jay Nordlinger, Managing Editor of the National Review, who says he thinks Bush belongs on Mount Rushmore, who says he “loves” the guy, shared these observations:

“I thought Kerry did very, very well; and I thought Bush did poorly — much worse than he is capable of doing. Listen: If I were just a normal guy — not Joe Political Junkie — I would vote for Kerry. On the basis of that debate, I would. If I were just a normal, fairly conservative, war-supporting guy: I would vote for Kerry. On the basis of that debate.”

And, again from Nordlinger:

“Bush said, "We're makin' progress" a hundred times — that seemed a little desperate. He also said "mixed messages" a hundred times — I was wishing that he would mix his message. He said, "It's hard work," or, "It's tough," a hundred times. In fact, Bush reminded me of Dan Quayle in the 1988 debate, when the Hoosier repeated a couple of talking points over and over, to some chuckles from the audience (if I recall correctly).

Staying on message is one thing; robotic repetition — when there are oceans of material available — is another.”

This article is well worth reading in full before they yank it.

About the Liberal Majority Blog

Welcome to the No Longer Silent, Liberal Majority.

This site will be used to discuss electoral and policy issues and spread the word about the best political news, information, and commentary available on the Web.

Carole V. Bell

William F. Buckley Jr. on First Bush-Kerry Debate on National Review Online

William F. Buckley Jr. on First Bush-Kerry Debate on National Review Online
And now this? What's going on at the National Review? It's another sound and fair analysis.
Never thought I'd be recommending anyone read William F. Buckley, but here I am.

Beyond Spin, Fox News Takes a Turn Towards the Bizarre

Well at least there's no redemption for Fox. Even for Fox News, yesterday’s disinformation and obfuscation seems extreme. First came the Carl Cameron fake Kerry quote fiasco, which was eventually debunked and disavowed by the editor (archived here). Although the Kerry manicure myths are no longer posted, however, there’s yet another highly suspect piece spreading fake news and innuendo online at Foxnews.com.

Parts of the Foxnews.com article "Some Voters Still Flip-Flop after Debate," (http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,134268,00.html) by Jane Roh may have been meant to be tongue-in-cheek or subtly sarcastic. Either way, it's unclear, and entirely unsuccessful as political humor. Instead, Roh's article is presented as a straight news, chronicling viewer reactions to last night's debate.

Despite the serious subject matter and presentation, however, the writer does not seem to recognize, or at least does not indicate to her readers, that one of the debate watchers she interviewed and quoted as a "Kerry supporter" is unquestionably, completely, and, yes, somewhat amusingly, a member of a fictitious group, whose anti-Kerry web site (http://communistsforkerry.com/) is devoted to ridiculing all things left - communism, socialism, liberalism in general, and above all, Senator John Kerry.

Roh writes:
"Of course, there were some Kerry supporters in attendance who had no doubts whatever about their candidate."We're trying to get Comrade Kerry elected and get that capitalist enabler George Bush out of office," said 17-year-old Komoselutes Rob of Communists for Kerry."Even though he, too, is a capitalist, he supports my socialist values more than President Bush," Rob said, before assuring FOXNews.com that his organization was not a parody group. When asked his thoughts on Washington's policy toward Communist holdout North Korea, Rob said: "The North Koreans are my comrades to a point, and I'm sure they support Comrade Kerry, too.""

Lest anyone doubt, there's ample evidence that this is a bogus group. This is immediately apparent upon even the most cursory visit to that web site (http://communistsforkerry.com/), which boasts these alternating headlines:

"Foreign interests are more important than American interests,"
"Our party deserves another chance, because a hundred years of failure means nothing"
"Give Uranium to Iranium"
And "Stop the economic boom created by George W. Bush!"

Could anyone have thought they were a serious group, one that was actually worth quoting? Clearly not! Even Fox writers are smarter and more insightful than that.However, if this section of the article was meant as humor, Ms. Roh's style is a bit too subtle. Subtle enough, in fact, to be misleading, but still maintain plausible deniability as to her intentions. I'm sure Fox News would like us to give Ms. Roh the benefit of the doubt that she obviously recognized this was a joke, and published it as such; and that Roh, like her colleague Carl Cameron earlier with his fake Kerry quotes that Fox editors now admit were "written in jest and should not have been posted or broadcast," meant no harm and bore no "malice."

Right. Well, it would have been nice if she shared this key bit of information with her audience, rather than allowing many of Fox's more gullible or less critical visitors, ones who may have read the article quickly, or perhaps didn't choose to click on the link, to be left with the wrong impression about John's Kerry's supporters and affiliations. That would have been nice, right?

Or, would that kind of clarity, given the Fox ethos, have been entirely beside the point?

-Carole Bell

CJR Campaign Desk: Interview with Michael Kinsley

CJR Campaign Desk: Archives
Kinsley is insightful, critical, and consistently honest regarding the state of political journalism today.

How To Speed-Read the Net - Ditch your browser RSS makes surfing for news a joy. By Paul Boutin

How To Speed-Read the Net Ditch your browser RSS makes surfing for news a joy. By Paul Boutin
Great tool for those who just can't get enough news fast enough.