Wednesday, March 12, 2008


What's wrong with this analogy from Time's Mark Halperin (which is quoted approvingly here by The New Republic's Michael Crowley)?

The media loves a close game -- It would be much better for Obama if the press stopped describing the race as "deadlocked" and "tied," as he tries to certify himself as the clear frontrunner given his manifest lead in delegates and his unflagging national popularity. (Think Bush-Gore 2000 when the media may have functionally tipped the scales by portraying Bush's miniscule margin snapshot in Florida as a decisive lead, somewhat de-legitimizing Gore's recount efforts.)

Er, if "the media loves a close game," how is that proved by the fact that the media said Bush-Gore in Florida wasn't a close game?

If the press works to ensure that contests go on as long as possible, why did the press suggest that the Florida recount shouldn't go on?

Want a theory that fits both examples? Here, try this: The media loves saying that Democrats are screwing up -- whether or not they are. That was the message with regard to Florida in 2000 and that's the message now with regard to the Obama campaign and the party as a whole.

(And yes, I know: I frequently accuse the Democrats of screwing up. But I don't have the mainstream press's ability to create conventional wisdom, and I don't do because it reinforces the aura of power of the kool kidz in my neighborhood.)

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