- The Washington Times - Saturday, September 13, 2008

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

According to recent reports, the mainstream media are investigating whether Gov. Sarah Palin cheated to win the Miss Wasilla beauty pageant in 1984, an issue clearly vital to U.S. national security and economic stability. Give me a break.

It is clear that the media are unwilling to devote any time or talent to research any issue that may paint Sen. Barack Obama in a bad light, even ignoring relevant questions about his past that are meaningful as voters consider the next president of the United States.

Media, I want to know about Mr. Obama’s work with Bill Ayers, particularly as board members of the Woods Fund. I want to know what groups have received funding from the foundation under the leadership of Mr. Obama and Mr. Ayers. I want to understand Mr. Obama’s position on Israel, the Palestine Liberation Organization and other positions he has taken as he has climbed the political ladder.

As a mother and independent voter concerned about the future of our country, I expect integrity from our media. I challenge the media to a higher standard of reporting so we voters can have faith that the information on which we base our decisions is fair, accurate and a product of responsible, principled reporting.

ERIN P. PARE

Savannah, Ga.

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Suppose the Democratic Party nominee for president of the United States of America had a different heritage.

What if his name were “Barry H. Baum”? Let’s suppose that Barry, a graduate of Columbia University and Harvard Law School, turned down a lucrative career as a Wall Street lawyer to become a community organizer, a steppingstone to a brief (but amazing) political career leading to his being elected a United States senator.

Tall, slim, polished, confident, a gifted speaker who is friendly and has a flashing smile, Sen. Baum captivated his growing audiences with his passion and dynamic oratory. And like a new rock star, he catapulted into national prominence — against all odds — capturing the Democratic nomination for the highest office in the land.

Now, let’s suppose some disturbing facts began to emerge.

For example, it is revealed that Mr. Baum was a friend and fellow foundation board member of an unrepentant terrorist, one who has been convicted of bombing the Pentagon and the New York City police headquarters and who openly stated that he regretted that he was not able to bomb more.

That Mr. Baum was buddy-buddy with a slum landlord (now a convicted felon) who contributed to Mr. Baum’s Senate campaigns and gave him a “sweetheart” real estate deal.

That for 20 years, Mr. Baum attended a prominent synagogue whose rabbi openly cursed America. This rabbi conducted the bas mitzvahs of Mr. Baum’s two daughters. The synagogue gave its Man of the Year award to a known anti-American (Let’s call him “Screwey Louie Feinstein”) who openly spewed his hatred of Muslims.

Suppose Mr. Baum’s wife — born “Malka Rubenstein” and now known as “Michelle” — stated that America was a mean-spirited country and that with Mr. Baum’s nomination, for the first time in her life, she was really proud of her country.

Now, with this set of facts, close your eyes and try to imagine what the reaction would be. Would Big Media remain silent? Oh no, they likely would pounce on each incident and thoroughly investigate it and try to find out more. Would the general community be somewhat nonchalant and dismissive and toss it all off as “politics as usual”? Are you kidding? There would be demonstrations, possibly even riots. At the very least, the Democratic Party would find a way to impeach Mr. Baum and withdraw his candidacy. Sen. Barry Baum would be lucky not to be “tarred and feathered.” What a double standard.

LEONARD BLOOM

Owings Mills, Md.

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The Republicans at their recent national convention lashed out against liberal media bias. Networks were quick to scoff at the remarks. However, the facts speak for themselves.

Keith Olbermann, MSNBC’s chief gossiper, stated in September 2007: “MSNBC leans left, of course, but you’re not supposed to admit it, you’re not supposed to say, ‘We give Democrats an easier time than Republicans.’”

During the Democratic National Convention, Mr. Olbermann tried to silence MSNBC Republican consultants. He had MSNBC Republican consultant Mike Murphy dropped from the prime-time coverage on Day One of the convention. On Day 3 of that convention, Mr. Olbermann could be heard rudely saying while Mr. Murphy was speaking, “Let’s wrap him up, all right?” Later, Mr. Olbermann shouted profanities at fellow MSNBC host Joe Scarborough, a moderate Republican, on an open mic.

CNN, which favors Sen. Barack Obama, has been condemning everything Republican, mocking everything from Cindy McCain’s outfits to Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin’s children. CNN gossiper Jeanne Moos ridiculed Republican vice-presidential candidate Palin’s two youngest children, one of whom has Down syndrome. CNN, like many tabloids, has no conscience when it comes to exploiting children for ratings. CNN camera operators were told to zoom in on Mrs. Palin’s children and capture any embarrassing moments. It’s sad that CNN would stoop so low, exploiting children. CNN never highlighted Michelle Obama’s reaction to Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton’s speech on Day 2 of the Democratic National Convention. One could easily notice Mrs. Obama pursing her lips as Mrs. Clinton spoke. Mrs. Obama looked as if she was holding back a lot of anger. Her body language betrayed her true feelings - hate and disgust for Mrs. Clinton.

Then CNN gossipers Lola Ogunnaike and Kiran Chetry chose prime morning time to ridicule Mrs. McCain’s outfit, concentrating very little on Sen. John McCain’s acceptance speech at the Republican National Convention. (Far less airtime was given last week to Mr. McCain’s speech than to Mr. Obama’s speech the week before.) Forget about the numerous issues confronting Americans, such as the Iraq war and the deteriorating economy.

It’s sad that the majority of journalists have discarded their independent objectivity for a biased agenda, promoting their own selfish interests while ignoring the public’s right to hear the issues presented fairly and objectively.

CHRISTIAN GATSBY

Hoover, Ala.

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