Crawford Newspaper Endorses Keery

This is funny:

A tiny weekly newspaper that bills itself as President Bush's hometown paper has endorsed John Kerry for president, saying the Massachusetts senator will restore American dignity.(...)

"Four items trouble us the most about the Bush administration: his initiatives to disable the Social Security (news - web sites) system, the deteriorating state of the American economy, a dangerous shift away from the basic freedoms established by our founding fathers, and his continuous mistakes regarding Iraq," the editorial said.

The Iconoclast, established in 2000, said it editorialized in support of the invasion of Iraq and publisher W. Leon Smith promoted Bush and the invasion in a BBC interview, believing Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction. "Instead we were duped into following yet another privileged agenda," the editorial said.

Will the LA Times follow suit?

Not Properly Verifying Forged Documents

It's like living in a Kafka novel:In its rush to air its now discredited story about President George W. Bush's National Guard service, CBS bumped another sensitive piece slated for the same "60 Minutes" broadcast: a half-hour segment about how the U.S. government was snookered by forged documents purporting to show Iraqi efforts to purchase uranium from Niger.(...)

A team of "60 Minutes" correspondents and consulting reporters spent more than six months investigating the Niger uranium documents fraud, CBS sources tell NEWSWEEK. The group landed the first ever on-camera interview with Elisabetta Burba, the Italian journalist who first obtained the phony documents, as well as her elusive source, Rocco Martino, a mysterious Roman businessman with longstanding ties to European intelligence agencies.(...)

But just hours before the piece was set to air on the evening of Sept. 8, the reporters and producers on the CBS team were stunned to learn the story was being scrapped to make room for a seemingly sensational story about new documents showing that Bush ignored a direct order to take a flight physical while serving in the National Guard more than 30 years ago.(...)

"This is like living in a Kafka novel," said Joshua Micah Marshall, a Washington Monthly contributing writer and a Web blogger who had been collaborating with "60 Minutes" producers on the uranium story. "Here we had a very important, well-reported story about forged documents that helped lead the country to war. And then it gets bumped by another story that relied on forged documents."

While I'm still trying to wrap my head around this one, one thing I do know for certain is that nobody died when CBS failed to verify documents.

Is The Horserace Narrative About To Change?

The Note certainly thinks so: There's the fact that two of America's leading news organizations (who poll together) are about to release some horserace numbers that are going to suggest a tight race and tease out the "Kerry closes the gap with momentum" storyline for which the press hungers. (As Joe Lockhart would say, EVERYONE in Washington knows about these poll numbers ... ..) As much as I complain about it, I'm not certain how much the horserace narrative actually helps one candidate or the other. In fact, in 2000, it is entirely possible the narrative on Election Day, that Bush would probably win a close one, might have helped fuel Democratic turnout and was also probably a factor in around 30% of Nader's supporters dropping him in the booth. Still, in an election that is almost certainly going to be tight, the "comeback kid" label is a good one to have. If nothing else, it will make Kerry look more favorable, and might lead to some Bush voters giving him a second look.

Stoned Slackers Know What's Going On

Bill O'Reilly recently characterized Daily Show viewers as stoned slackers (priceless interview), and claimed, as always, that he had research to back that statement up even though, as always, he never produced the research. However, the National Annenberg Election Survey has research on this subject, to the tune of over 19,000 people surveyed over the last two months, and reveals that Daily Show viewers are actually more informed about the campaign than any other group:Polling conducted between July 15 and September 19 among 19,013 adults showed that on a six-item political knowledge test people who did not watch any late-night comedy programs in the past week answered 2.62 items correctly, while viewers of Letterman answered 2.91, viewers of Leno answered 2.95, and viewers of The Daily Show with Jon Stewart answered 3.59 items correctly. That meant there was a difference of 16 percentage points between Daily Show viewers and people who did not watch any late-night programming.

The campaign knowledge test covered such topics as which candidate favors allowing workers to invest some of their Social Security contributions in the stock market, the income range at which John Kerry would eliminate the Bush tax cut, and which candidate is a former prosecutor.

"People who watch The Daily Show are more interested in the presidential campaign, more educated, younger, and more liberal than the average American or than Leno or Letterman viewers," said Dannagal Goldthwaite Young, a senior analyst at the Annenberg Public Policy Center , who conducted the research for this report. "However, these factors do not explain the difference in levels of campaign knowledge between people who watch The Daily Show and people who do not. In fact, Daily Show viewers have higher campaign knowledge than national news viewers and newspaper readers - even when education, party identification, following politics, watching cable news, receiving campaign information online, age, and gender are taken into consideration."

The best news show on television demonstrates its value yet again.

Bill Schneider Should Resign

When I read the following a few hours ago over at Atrios, I was outraged:Schneider

Well I can guarantee that they don't like George Bush. Do they think there's a difference? I think Osama bin laden - the al qaeda network - who I'm certain follow american politics. Look at the messages coming out on their tapes, they seem to follow politics very closely. They would very much like to defeat President Bush. But the question is could they pull of the same trick they could pull off in Spain? What Dennis Hastert says is they'd better not try that, it won't work here. My guess is he's right about that."

CNN, just now.

Over at Dailykos, Armando argues that Terry Mac should demand that Schneider resign for making such a slanderous statement against Kerry. I concur. Schneider talks of Al-Qaeda attempting to influence the election through terror because supposedly they like Kerry, while simultaneously attempting to influence the election himself through terror because he obviously likes Bush. Worse still, he does so under the guise of being a "non-partisan," and presenting "analysis" that has absolutely no basis in reality.

Bill Schneider should be fired by CNN, if he does not resign. Gallup and CNN's shame has only deepened.


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