Fundraising Bores Public; More Quotes of the Decade
1) CBS News discovered that
when it comes to the fundraising scandal, Americans are "worried
it's getting so much attention."
2) To the New York Times the
number of people in prison has no impact on the crime rate.
1) Sunday's CBS Evening News
featured a story on how people outside of Washington, DC don't care
about the fundraising scandal. It's the third of this kind of story
I've noticed over the past couple of weeks which fit into the
"media circle." Ignore many scandal developments, slant the
little coverage offered toward a "they all do it" theme
while portraying the hearings as a political game, not a serious
inquiry. Then report that the public doesn't care and when asked about
the minimal level of coverage point to the lack of public interest.
On the October 19 CBS Evening News reporter Sharyl Attkisson ventured
all the way out to a DC suburb. As transcribed by MRC news analyst
Steve Kaminski, she asked:
"How is the whole issue of
campaign finance reform playing outside of Washington, D.C.? Have
politicians really been able to make the voters care? Families
enjoying a pumpkin festival in Centreville, Virginia, 45 minutes from
the Capital, seem far removed from the squabbles. Is there anyone in
this group here that thinks campaign finance reform is being
Man: "I don't even think they
should be focusing on it at all."
Woman: "The politicians are saying
so much and the media is listening to them where there's a lot more
other issues they should be listening to."
Attkisson: "Issues like
health care and education for their children. Some are concerned about
fundraising, but are also worried it's getting so much
Man: "Sometimes it's in excess,
but I think that there's too much said about it."
Attkisson: "But one view is clear,
even people who want campaign abuses investigated would be happier if
Congress spent more time on other things, things they see as more
important to their families and their future."
Let's hope these "average citizens" stick to pumpkin carving
and leave politics to those who have a clue about what's going on.
The other story stories with the public doesn't care theme appeared in
newspapers. Here are the headlines:
From the October 10 New York Times: "The Buzz in the Capital
Brings a Yawn in Peoria." From the October 17 USA
Today: "Where Fundraising Flap Falls Flat -- In Missouri, 1,000
miles from the nation's capital, the clamor over political fundraising
generally is drawing little interest or concern."
And at least one media star agrees with
the public view, at least the assessment found by reporters that they
all do it. On this past weekend's Tim Russert show on CNBC, CBS 60
Minutes correspondent Lesley Stahl suggested the scandals are not
hurting Clinton's popularity rating because people see that "he's
a great father and he's a compromiser. And the Republicans like to say
he has no sense of direction. But we see it as kind of prudent. You
know we like it. He's not taking us in any wild directions."
Russert asked, as transcribed by MRC
analyst Geoffrey Dickens: "And in terms of campaign fundraising
is the view across the country, 'They all do it?'"
Stahl agreed with the public
assessment: "They all do it. Well in a sense it's true. In a
sense it's true."
2) A very telling New York
Times headline from a few weeks ago that we overlooked, but it's too
good to ignore any longer. Over a September 28 New York Times
"Week in Review" story the headline read: "Crime Keeps
on Falling, But Prisons Keep on Filling."
As if the two trends are unrelated.
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