Wednesday, September 10, 2008

The Math of Distraction

While burning some grilled cheese sandwiches for tonight's dinner, I heard an NPR report on the presidential candidates' day. The reports on Obama and McCain were roughly equal in length. They had quite a few sound bites from Obama. At least half of them addressed the "lipstick on a pig" non-issue.**

Virtually the entire report on McCain foregrounded Republican outrage over the "lipstick on a pig" comment.

So: One-half of Obama's report was devoted to this distraction, as was all of McCain's, or
(1/2 x 1/2) + (1 x 1/2) = 3/4.
This is how Rove and his minions get three-quarters of the news coverage to focus on utter crap!

This kind of politics doesn't add up to democracy.

Nor does this kind of media. Especially when the supposedly liberal reporters at NPR frame the day's event as Obama being put "on the defensive" in their lead-in comments.

** Here's Obama's remarks in context, as reported by the L.A. Times:
Obama compared the policies of McCain to those of President Bush.

"John McCain says he is about change too, and so I guess his whole angle is: 'Watch out George Bush, except for economic policy, healthcare policy, tax policy, education policy, foreign policy and Karl Rove-style politics, we're really going to shake things up in Washington.' That's not change. That's just calling the same thing something different.

"You can put lipstick on a pig," Obama said. "It's still a pig. You can wrap an old fish in a piece of paper called change. It's still going to stink after eight years."


Laura said...

Agree that the whole "controversy" is a collosal waste of oxygen. I give this point to Obama. Hopefully, common sense will prevail here. btw did you notice Jane Swift adding her 2 cents. Predictably, she took umbrage at Obama's benign remarks. Girlfriend is trying to capitalize on the fact that she popped out a baby in office (it's en vogue!) - her crowning achievement. Once an inept hack, always an inept hack.

Sungold said...

Hmm, this must be why I'm feeling lightheaded today - they've burned up all the oxygen! And here I thought it was just missing lunch plus being woken early today by the Tiger ...

I didn't hear about Jane Swift. Do you think she's angling to revive her "career"?