Mimsy Were the Borogoves

Editorials: Where I rant to the wall about politics. And sometimes the wall rants back.

End of media; to delete this media…

Jerry Stratton, November 2, 2010

KTVA reporters were caught planning attacks against the Miller campaign when Nick McDermott accidentally left his phone on after calling the Miller campaign and getting voicemail. One of the attacks was to make up a story about child molesters showing up for rallies or campaign events of some kind.

“…at least one of them will be a registered sex offender”. Note, that reporter didn’t say “child molester”; that was the attack plan, but they planned to get that attack by finding the more generic “registered sex offender”. Registered sex offender can mean a woman who at 13 had sex with her 12-year-old boyfriend. In some states it might even mean a woman who at 15 sent a topless photo of herself to her boyfriend.

It’s not that hard to find such a person, and the female reporter knew this: “Out of all the people that will show up tonight, at least one of them will be a registered sex offender”. And the male reporter replied with “you just have to find that one person”. Depending on the event, they were probably right; they’d be just as right for a Murkowski event (assuming people show up for those) or an Obama event or any other event. Because they include consensual sex among teens, these lists are huge.

What if McDermott hadn’t made that critical mistake? What if we had never heard them making these plans, and they successfully manufactured a “child molester crisis” to attack the Miller campaign with? Think about your reaction to this news if it had come out as the reporters planned it: on Sunday or Monday, “Sex offenders support Joe Miller”. Only on Wednesday or Thursday—after the election is over—do we discover it was (a) someone not connected to the Miller campaign except for showing up for something, and/or (b) not a child molester.

I know many conservative blogs, especially Republican ones, who would have reacted by throwing Miller to the media dogs.

The media cannot be trusted. We should have learned that in the 2008 campaign; we have definitely learned it this year. But we need to internalize. When something appears in a newspaper or on a news show, it isn’t real until it’s been proved by a trusted source. When I wrote The coming crisis this is what I meant: that members of the media would invent crises to throw at conservative candidates they don’t like, and that we need to be careful not to believe them without real proof, verifiable relevant details, and unbiased named sources. Anonymous sources and the media themselves don’t count.

In response to The coming crisis: We know it. We just don’t know what it is yet.

  1. <- There will be lies