Is WEDU, Tampa, Culpable in Democracy Now! Stunt to Disrupt Romney Speech?

Last night, as Mitt Romney gave his nomination speech at the RNC, Code Pink protesters trailed by Democracy Now! cameramen tried to shout Romney down.  Video here.  Breitbart story here.  This is the ultimate offense in a week of similar stunts to disrupt the proceedings of the RNC.

The important part of this story, locally, is that WEDU, the flagship public television station in Tampa Bay, has been hosting Democracy Now! during the convention. ... 

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What The Heck Does Democracy Look Like, Again?

Today was the last day of the Republican National Convention.  I’ve spent the last week watching the media watch the protesters slowly ripen in the Florida sun, then hurry back to television studios to transform images of the sad, stinking, minuscule, drum-banging, shouting debacle into images of noble massings of freedom fighters — using no tool other than the magic of media bias.

Much of this bias depends upon behaving as if the protesters are victims, rather than instigators of violence and authors of every last one of their own problems.  The New Yorker’s Nathaniel Stein wins the prize for the most fictional imagining of non-existent police cruelty.  I have not and will not be reading Fifty Shades of Grey, but Stein’s whiney attempt at protester pathos certainly sounds like it — sounds like channeling cheap S & M porn.  That is the really offensive thing: how the protesters are exhibitionists; how they force the rest of us to deal with them acting out on the streets. ... 

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Why Is WEDU Using Our Money To Broadcast Democracy Now! During the RNC? And Other Questions.

A few days ago, in so-called Romneyville, where anti-RNC protesters are squatting, I watched a television cameraman genuflect before a protester.  The gesture wasn’t technically religious: it is a strategy used to create the impression of a large crowd out of the presence of a handful of people.  Zoom in on a close shot of one or two people; aim the camera close to the ground to capture walking feet: these are shopworn media strategies for inflating protest numbers.

It’s bad enough when “private” media invents story lines this way.  They’re selling the drama of big crowds.  But when we’re the ones paying for the reporting, bias is much more troubling.  And when you mix in the radical reporters blending protesting directly with “reporting,” it’s a toxic soup. ... 

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In Frontpage Magazine Today

RNC Protesters: Behind the Media Spin

The protests are a bust.  The same 200-odd activists showed up at a pro-immigration rally that was supposed to draw many thousands.  A large percentage of the attendees were Scientologists proselytizing the protesters, or staff members of various Soros-funded groups, or self-important ACLU and National Lawyer’s Guild “observers.”  Or, addled teens pretending to be anarchists. ... 

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Tampa Newspaper, Mayor Crudely Slur Sarah Plain

Two weeks ago, it was Mayor Bob Buckhorn making dirty jokes about Sarah Palin in the New York Times.  Read the story of the Mayor’s behavior at the link.

Today, it’s the “elite” left-wing paper, the Tampa Bay Times (formerly St. Petersburg Times), running this act of sexual vandalism against Palin.  This is virtual rape.  And the Times, despite all its hysterics over the Republican “war on women,” (and their much touted “institute for journalistic ethics”) seem quite happy promoting it: ... 

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Hilarious Fake Polling, Attacks on Stupid White Men: Welcome to the Tampa Bay Times

The Tampa Bay Times (until recently, the St. Petersburg Times), fancies itself the New York Times . . . only with sandy beaches and really nice water views.

Despite living in paradise, they work very hard to emulate their northern peers’ biases.  In preparation for the coming RNC convention, TBT‘s crack political staff called up 117 of their best friends and asked them what they thought of Paul Ryan, then pretended it was a legitimate political poll: ... 

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History Mystery: How Fast Can PBS and the NYT Destroy a Generation of Young Minds?

Many people were confused by the New York Times’  jaw-grindingly idiotic column yesterday trying to link candidate Paul Ryan to serial rapist and racist revolutionary Elridge Cleaver:

Paul Ryan, Black Panther?

By ADAM GOODHEART, PETER MANSEAU and TED WIDMER

Did Paul Ryan quote a famous 1960s Black Panther Party slogan in his speech on Saturday announcing his candidacy for vice president on the Republican ticket? ... 

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Smarts and Subsidiaritianism Conquers Republican Identity Politics

Romney nominated a grown-up.  The best and the brightest of the pack.  Who couldn’t like a candidate who cares enough (for their own good) to send 90 cranky Georgetown professors to bed without supper to teach them not to throw temper tantrums about Catholic principles and big words they do not bother to try to understand before bloviating about them in the public square?

I’m also deeply relieved Romney rejected Rubio.  It’s probably the best chance Rubio has to prove himself in a substantive way, rather than being artificially elevated through the system on the basis of his identity.  Far too many right-of-center pundits carried on about Rubio’s imagined “articulateness” and the “great speeches he was making” while studiously pretending not the see the enormous stumbles that defined his Florida political career. ... 

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