Monday, July 28, 2008

John McCain Needs Equal Media Coverage? Sounds Good To Me...

That John McCain is the worst candidate in this election is an axiom. There’s no way else to say it. Everything is says and does is confusing, wrong or false (or some combination of the three). And, yet, he keeps hanging on. Why? Well, as we’ve been made painfully aware, the media is essentially keeping him in this race by preventing any substantive discussion.

Don’t believe me? Well, let’s look at Exhibit A: The study released by the Center for Media and Public Affairs at George Mason University. This study shows that in the first six weeks of the general election, the “liberal media” was actually harder on Obama. Yea, you read that right. So all you “liberal media” conspiracy theorists can just throw that crap out the window. In the evening news broadcasts, a mere 28% of stories about Obama were positive and the whopping 72% remaining were negative. As for McCain, he faired much better, with an essentially equal 43% positive and 57% negative showing. So, any claim that the media is simply presenting stories, and not specific viewpoints, is not true.

And, for Exhibit B, we’ll look at the fact that in a recent interview, CBS covered for McCain when he made a glaring mistake, especially considering that “the surge” is his area of expertise, so to speak. Instead of airing the mistake and letting the people discuss this fact, CBS edited in an answer to a previous question, an answer where McCain impugns Obama’s motives with more lies.

But, John McCain still whines that the media is unfair to him. He’s not satisfied with significantly more positive coverage, he wants equal time, too. Well, John, in case no one has mentioned this to you, you actually have to do something newsworthy to make the news. So, while you’re opponent is meeting with cheering crowds of hundreds of thousands around the world (at your urging, none the less), you’re knocking over applesauce and checking your notes for a price of milk in Pennsylvania. And then you're complaining about unfair coverage. C’mon John, you’re supposed to be the candidate of “experience” and “wisdom,” yet you’re stomping and pouting like a child. Is this how you’re going to handle the presidency?

And then you go and run “the ad.” You know what ad I’m talking about, the ad that completely goes against the “clean campaign” you promised to run. And, shit, John, you didn’t even have a 527 do it. You approved these falsehoods all on your own. Wow! It’s the one that only aired on national TV like four times, but has been on loop on all the news networks today. But, were the talking heads debunking the falsehood-laced ad? Not a chance. MSNBC made a feeble attempt during the day, but it wasn’t until Countdown that the whole truth came out. Shall we speak those truths? Yeah, I think so.

1) First, and most importantly, Obama never planned to make the Landstuhl trip a media fanfare. It was simply going to be a trip to visit the soldiers, just as similar trips in Afghanistan and Iraq were. However, the Pentagon labeled Obama’s trip a campaign event and did not allow advisors. Or specifically, one advisor: retired Air Force Major General Gration. But please, feel free to look further into who the Pentagon official responsible for the trip blunder is. It’s hilarious…you’ll never see it coming!
2) The full Senate Foreign Relations Committee has held three hearings on Afghanistan, and Obama did attend one of those. Let’s also bear in mind that he’s a member, not a chair (and, please, McCainiacs, bring up your candidate’s attendance record. We’ll compare).
3) And, let’s clarify what kind of years we’re talking about. Decades? No. Try two and a half years. And, thanks to the wonders of modern technology, like email and “the google,” we can all know what’s going on there every single day.

And, then of course, there are the lies that McCain tells about himself…in the same ad! McCain claims he's always supported the troops, but his actual voting record shows something different:
1) In mid-2007, McCain had only shown up for four of the previous 14 votes on Iraq.
2) In 2008, that number is zero. In fact, McCain hasn’t cast a vote in the Senate since April 8th. Not for FISA, not for Medicare, and not even for the GI Bill (which he and Bush opposed).
3) April 2003, McCain tabled a motion to provide over $1 billion in National Guard and Reserve equipment (brings a new meaning to BYO).
4) October 2003, McCain tabled a motion to provide an additional $233 million for safety equipment.
5) March 2004, McCain voted. He voted against closing tax loopholes that would have provided an additional $1.8 billion in veterans’ care.
6) March 2004, McCain voted against closing corporate tax loopholes that would have provided and additional $1.5 billion for veterans’ care.
7) April 2006, McCain voted against an extra $430 million for veteran outpatient care.

Sensing a pattern here? Ok, well I’ll continue then.

8) May 2006, McCain voted against $20 million for veteran health care facilities.
9) March 2007, McCain did not show up to vote on a bill to redeploy troops from Iraq in 2008.
10) September 2007, McCain voted against an amendment for minimum rest time between deployments.

And that was pretty much the last time McCain showed up to vote on anything (scroll down for a post that discusses his attendance record in depth). Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America gave McCain a D on his voting record. Obama received an B+. Disabled American Veterans gave McCain a 20% rating on his voting record, while Obama received an 80% rating. There's a difference in being a veteran and actually supporting veterans.

So, John McCain wants more equal media coverage, and I think he deserves it. Let’s write to all the media outlets and demand that they cover McCain the same way they cover Obama. Let’s see the pundits hack apart McCain’s gaffes hour after endless hour. Let’s see them call for him to do something, and then when he does it, let’s see them call him presumptuous. Let’s see him handle the pressure of true political discourse. Actually, it’s hard enough watching him now, I don’t know if I could really stomach any more. But, I suppose I can, and gladly will, in the name of democracy.

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