Tuesday, September 15, 2009

The ACORN Never Falls Far from the Media Tree

Disclaimer: Yes, I read Michelle Malkin. I do so not because I particularly enjoy her prose; in fact I find her to be among the harsher voices of the conservative bloggers. Yet she also remains one of those who consistently finds and reports on those stories that mainstreamers either under-report, ignore, or mis-report.

The recent videos showing ACORN representatives encouraging people to lie in order to bilk the government out of housing that might be put to better use (i.e., anything but a house of ill-repute) are case in point.

Now, you know... you just know... that if this were a conservative organization, the networks would not hesitate to plant an undercover reporter in one of their offices if it meant getting their hands on this kind of video. In fact, our local newsies do this all the time. They have "special correspondents" whose sole job it is to track down and embarrass scoff-laws at any cost. They use Michael Moore assault tactics to accost these people at work, at home, or whereever the story leads, so that we get the "truth" of the matter from the horse's mouth.

Michelle finds two ironies here. First, she points to Charlie Gibson's apparent ignorance of the entire ACORN video fiasco. Based on the transcripts of the interview, I find Gibson's remarks that he was "unaware" of this story to be disengenuous at best.

Who for a minute would believe that ABC (along with every other news outlet of any repute) is not completely wired into the internet and keeping a close eye on both sides of the political blogosphere? That's what they have staff for, for crying out loud. This story has been percolating for a couple of weeks now, and this is the first the mighty Charles Gibson has heard of it?

Well, okay, let's give him the benefit of the doubt. In his crystal reporting booth, it's just possible that his staff and editors left him out of the loop on the decision of whether to run with this story, or treat it like a non-issue so their liberal customer base wouldn't roast them over a spit. That would give Gibson "plausible deniability" (a term I've come to completely despise over the years) and allow him to claim that he had no idea that ACORN was putting their collective feet in their over-large mouths.

But I don't buy it.

Malkin then points to a story out of Newsbusters.org wherein Nora O'Donnell of NBC frets that these videos may comprise a form of "entrapment." Oh, brother. ABSCAM could, conceivably, have been classified as "entrapment." The worst these videos could be considered is a violation of wire-tapping laws in certain states (primarily Maryland). Entrapment is a method of enticing or encouraging someone to do something illegal where they show reluctance to proceed. These ACORN representatives were only too happy to show these fake sex traffickers exactly how to lie to the government so they could set up their illicit brothels. Hardly entrapment.

Of course, we might still be waiting for NBC to report on this issue at all were it not for the fact that the Senate voted (finally!) to block ACORN funding last night. Even without a foreknowledge of the ACORN videos, then, this vote by the Senate should have sprung even the laziest mainstreamers into immediate action. Why the amendment in the first place? Why block funding to one of Obama's favorite organizations? What could possibly justify such an action?

Michelle calls this the "ostrich media" and wonders what we think. I think they should be renamed the "convenient-hearing media." Not as catchy, but more appropriate. Their heads aren't in the sand. They're watching those videos on the internet with their fingers in their ears.

"La, la, la! Can't hear you!"

(Corrected to show Gibson working for ABC, not NBC. Like I ever care to watch primetime news.)

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