Rathergate anniversary - 32 days and counting - MSM/DNC fighting back
Sister Told Jah makes the case that the MSM/DNC is fighting back against the blogosphere. She chronicles a story in the Des Moines register that attacks bloggers over nothing in particular. Captain's Quarters cites the same story. See also Patterico.
I wrote about this strategy in July, as I noted how the MSM/DNC fought aggressively to rescue Newsweek after Newsweek's toilet debacle:
We will have to fight the MSM/DNC issue-by-issue, scandal-by-scandal, lie-by-lie.emphasis added
But in the meantime, the MSM/DNC has become and will become more vicious and partisan than ever. Case in point - the Newsweek scandal. The blogosphere's ridicule and exposure of Newsweek's phony story of a Koran being flushed down the toilet at Guantanamo showed a new wrinkle in the MSM/DNC's strategy. Rather than accept defeat as it generally did in Rathergate and Easongate, MSM/DNC engaged in a protracted battle that continues even now. Shortly after Newsweek's humiliation, additional stories of Guantanamo abuse appeared in the MSM/DNC. MSM/DNC continued with these stories despite the lack of any evidence other than prisoner inspired rumors. MSM/DNC was determined to defend and justify Newsweek instead of allowing another MSM/DNC unit to be compromised and marginalized like CBS and CNN. Prisoner abuse/torture/gulag became the official MSM/DNC meme regarding Guantanamo, regardless of the consequences for national security or the war on terror. MSM/DNC had its power and reputation to defend - national security be damned.
The battle to defend the official MSM/DNC Guantanamo meme culminated in the words of Senator Durbin, who compared American soldiers to Nazis, etc.
From now on, we can expect that in the aftermath of every new scandal, the MSM/DNC will spare no effort to justify whatever blunder some MSM/DNC outlet has made.
The MSM/DNC's latest effort to rescue one of its own is the MSM/DNC's complete silence on the Air America scandal. This silence is beginning to take the MSM/DNC down with Air America. The focus of ridicule has now shifted to the New York Times instead of (or in addition to) Air America - as we see in today's Day-by-Day cartoon, at Director Blue and at Captain's Quarters.
The New York Times is faced with an impossible dilemma (much like CBS in September, 2004). Either (1) continue to ignore the scandal and face further erosion of credibility and loss of relevance or (2) acknowledge the scandal (with its best leftist spin) and toss Air America to the wolves. MSM/DNC eventually was forced to chose ("forced to choose" ???) option #2 during Rathergate and the blogosphere grew in power and influence. So far in this scandal, MSM/DNC is choosing option #1.
MSM/DNC hopes that the seemingly unrelated MSM/DNC attacks on the blogosphere will relieve MSM/DNC of the need for such choices in the future.
The Des Moines register attack piece is just one example of this strategy. I read a Doonesbury cartoon in early July (2005) in which one of the main characters referred to the "tail end of the media's fascination with blogging" and asked if blogging was only for "angry, semi-employed losers." That is MSM/DNC's story and MSM/DNC is sticking to it.
Meanwhile, the MSM/DNC hides under the bed hoping that the Air America scandal just goes away.