Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Cancel My Subscription!

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One thing that has become very clear during this primary season is that the traditional media often seems to conspire both to push the storyline they want people to accept, and to avoid alternative storylines that they want people to ignore.

This time, they are pushing the “Is America ready to elect a black man?” storyline and steering clear of the “Is America ready to elect a man who promises to continue the domestic and foreign policy course set by the most disastrous president we’ve ever had?” storyline.

It’s been going on for quite a while, but it recently became personal when I picked up my local newspaper on the day after the Pennsylvania primary to see the picture above next to the headline “Is it a Matter of Race?”The front page also prominently featured this story by Adam Nagourney of the NYT, and a story featuring local superdelegates who say they now see the race between Obama and Clinton as a virtual tie.

It was the last straw!

I folded up the front page of the paper and stuck it in an envelope with the following letter that I wrote to the publisher:
Dear Publisher

A newspaper is supposed to inform, educate and entertain readers, not spread propaganda intended to sway public opinion. However, your coverage of the Pennsylvania primary results, particularly this choice of photo and headline, seems clearly in line with a national media effort to cast an expected Clinton win as evidence of Obama’s lost support and possibly fatal flaws as a candidate.

It is complete bullshit, and I resent having paid for such a slanted view that implies the race has somehow “turned around,” and that it is now basically a tie between the two candidates.

Furthermore, I find it ridiculous that the Press Democrat allowed a local superdelegate like Lynn Woolsey to spout a careful evasion like “the Democrats have two great candidates,” without asking her to reconcile her often stated anti-war position with her support for Clinton, who recently talked about “obliterating Iran” with nuclear weapons, and has implied that McCain would make a better president than her Democratic opponent!

Or allowing Rachel Binah to say she was planning to switch to supporting Obama if he had won Pennsylvania (which was like saying she’d switch if she saw a flying pig), without asking her why she didn’t switch when Obama won 12 primaries in a row in February, and then won more delegates in Clinton’s “firewall” State of Texas!

I’ve been a subscriber for 25 years, but I can no longer continue to rely on this kind of shoddy reporting and biased presentation to help me understand what’s going on in the world. Please cancel my subscription.


To be fair, I should point out that I have considered canceling before, for a variety of reasons not the least of which is that I usually get my news from the web before things appear in the newspaper anyway. However, I kept a tradition of reading the newspaper alive, I suppose, because there was never a "straw" heavy enough to justify such a strong statement.

Until now!


  1. Giraffe8:31 PM

    I have great respect for you and your integrety. Newspapers are doing themselves in by becoming nothing to their readers. Where are the investigative reporters that were the heart and soul of good newspaper reporting. It is really sad, but true. Every letter counts for 300 voices I've heard. Glad you sent yours, seenos.

  2. Giraffe8:35 PM