Thursday, September 4, 2008

GOP vs. The Media Elite

ONE OF THE REPUBLICAN talking points that is being repeated over and over again at the Republican National Convention is that the media are a bunch of elitists.

I love it. Don't they read the papers? Media job layoffs are announced almost daily. Elitists? The average starting salary for a 2008 grad who actually finds work is $32,000. If you can find a job, that is.

Is the media showing their elitism by pointing out that there are only 36 African American delegates attending the convention? Is the media showing their bias for Obama by reporting that only two percent of the 1087 delegates are black? Is the media creating a story out of nothing rather than simply reporting what is happening in the speeches?

(the photo above is from Getty images via the Dallas Morning News)


Brian Dzenis said...

Silly media, they're supposed to just sit there and just be happy to hear phrases like "family values" and "hockey mom." They are not supposed to ask anything substantial about the candidates; they only say things like "nice speech, vote for candidate X, yay!"

In all seriousness though, the relationships between politicians and media go through a love/hate cycle. On one hand, political parties embrace the media because mass media acts as a conduit to get their message out. On the flip side, sometimes media does what they are paid to do and ask questions about their policies and their ability(or lack there of) follow through with what they believe. It's only natural that the GOP is upset with the media because they just HAD to go and ask about Sarah Palin's ethics investigation/pregnant daughter/qualifications to be the vice president, which of course make the GOP look bad. The media is not pulling this stuff out of nowhere, they simply doing their job and if the GOP doesn't like it, maybe they should think twice before nominating a vice president with the previously stated issues.

Geo said...

Do you think the media are letting Obama slide? Are they not as critical of him as they are of the Republicans?

- George (the teacher)

MattFitzpatrick said...

I think the media is finding what is different in a normal situation such as the Republican National Convention. They're finding something in nothing to create stories. It obviously works or else so many journalists would not be doing it. I don't think they choose to write about the black delegates to make the reader like obama, I think it was a buisness move to write something interesting about the convention, not just the same old boring play by play....maybe im totally wrong?

Courtney Schmidt said...

I believe the media is putting a microscope over this election because of the horrible ratings George W. Bush has gotten over the course of the last couple years. Perhaps the media is focusing more on Republications because George W. Bush is a Republican and some journalists, and citizens alike, don't want to see the last eight years repeated again. Journalism this year has set a tone for this upcoming election, so much so that people were sick of it before the candidates even accepted their nomination. It will be interesting to see what journalists focus on in the months to come.

Nell said...

I think the media is doing it's job in trying to dig up the most interesting, compelling stories. While I do think that in this particular election, the McCain/Palin ticket has been under more scrutiny and criticism from the media than the Obama/Biden ticket, however the media has not always been easy on the democratic party. Just recently they dug up, followed and introduced to the public the story of John Edwards' affair, shattering his seemingly perfect family man image. Or even going back to the way the media dealt with the Bill Clinton/Monica Lewinsky scandal ten years ago. They definitely did not let either of these two men slide when their actions were less than exemplary. While yes, right now, it seems as though the media is being harder on the Republican party, I think they are just following where the story is right now, and would be doing the same thing if the tables were turned.

However, the attacks they are making in their speeches toward the media may not be helping their relationship with the media. While I can understand that sometimes both sides probably feel like the media is overstepping their bounds, they should also realize that if it weren't for the media, it would be nearly impossible for them to do what they do, and if the media were not involved in publishing their ideas through the television, newspapers, internet and all of the other outlets that make these candidates accessible to the American people. Both parties need to take the good with the bad, if the Palin controversies weren't being covered, what would the media have published about her, a virtually unknown governor from Alaska. It's a double edged sword, they are unhappy with the information being put out there, but would they rather nobody be paying attention to them at all?

Megan Bradley said...

I believe most media are doing a fair job with equal coverage.. most. Yes, there is always going to be journalists that take the bias route, and they should just be ignored. The constant criticizing of media is overwhelming and frustrating.. and it makes me second guess my plans of becoming a journalist. Referring to the media as a "bunch of elitists" is a dangerous comment to make-- like I mentioned before, there is a lot of bias out there, and a lot of honorable journalists as well. Covering what needs to be covered is just a necessity for the American public, how else do the Republicans plan on them (the American people) to make an educated and deeply considered choice come election time? By the information given to them by the media, of course! Attacking the media just because they may have exposed some FACTS that may not cast them in the best light is a weak tactic, and the media usually exposes that as well. I just watched a great clip from The Daily Show that talks about how the Republicans are constantly saying one thing and then turning it completely around at a later date (in regards to Sarah Palin)-- all for the sake of saving their own asses. It reminded me of what you're talking about in your post a little bit, so I thought I'd leave the link.

Megan McCue Journalism said...

I think the media is definitely biased, if you watch certain news stations on the election it can kind of sway your opinion just by listening. I'm a republican but when I watch the news it makes me want to hate republicans because I feel like the news is so critical right now. I think a lot of times a big story is made out of nothing but they do have to keep things interesting, so I think this can mean stretching the truth for good ratings.

Pete said...

Obama got a lot of negative media attention when his minister / pastor came out with controversial comments. I believe that was a common question / discussion in the democratic convention between him and Hilary regarding how Obama could support and "be a part of" such a Church.
Now we have Sarah Palin and the Republicans in the media receiving both good and bad reactions based off her church. Strictly speaking of Sarah Palin's church it is involved with trying to convert gays through prayer, they believe and preach creationism (even want it taught in schools), and additionally are completely on the side of pro-life even in case of rape. Yet, questioning religion is such a "controversial" topic that it is hardly run on TV, nobody wants to lose their job questioning how somebody who is so zealous in their religion could possibly run this country. McCain is old, it is a definite possibility that Palin will be the president at some point. Is not there supposed to be a separation of Church and state? Will her religious upbringing effect her decisions and therefore the countries possibly? I watch the youtube videos..

"Our national leaders are sending them out on a task that is from God"

Neither party appeals to me currently, I am not an Obama supporter or McCain supporter but do feel strongly about religion myself. I believe in faith, and feel that it is good to have faith and beliefs but also strongly oppose injecting religion into the different facets of government and additionally making Iraq sound like a Holy war from the US point of view.

summergirl said...

I would say that the media has been hugely biased towards Obama. They pick up on the slightest things about McCain or Palin, but rarely report negatively on Obama. Newspapers and magazines need to present both sides fairly.