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Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Theory V. Reality

Posted by on December 28 at 13:40 PM

Seattle Weekly’s Geov Parrish published a list of 2005’s most “underreported” stories. As usual, his annual list reads like the fantasies of a leftist who believes the mainstream media is ignoring critical stories.

From Parrish’s list: Republican corruption scandals, the failure of I-912, and Samuel Alito’s right-wing views.

I’d provide links to the hundreds of stories that have been written about Abramoff and Scanlon and DeLay and Frist and Cunningham and that weird penny story out of Ohio, but it’d take up this entire blog. As for the “Failure of I-912,” not only did papers like the Olympian, the Tacoma News Tribune, and even the NYT editorialize about the significance of its defeat, but it was, in part, defeated in the first place because all the local mainstream media came out against the stupid thing. Alito? Parrish himself says that’s Alito’s right-wing radicalism is “no secret.” He’s right. And the reason: It’s been covered in the mainstream media. Just last week, Alito’s memos on spying and overturning Roe V. Wade were front-page news.

Here’s my favorite, though. Parrish claims that follow-up to Hurricane Katrina and “the abandonment of New Orleans” has “received virtually no attention.”


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I agree. The problem with all of these stories isn't that the mainstream media hasn't covered them but that the alternative press has covered them so intensely that just about every one of them is an overused cliche at this point. Sure, the nightly news might not be giving the stories full coverage, but that's not everything.

I think that the real problem, which Parrish and company don't talk about, is that despite the generally large amount of coverage there haven't been similarly large effects in either the administration or Congress' actions. These stories have come and gone and it looks like they've had almost zero staying power or influence.

That, I think, is what's motivating Parrish's categorization of these stories as being underreported---not that they actually have been but that the reporting of them has lead to nothing except frustration by people who want the administration to change and to respect some very basic rules in its actions.

You misspelled "received," Josh. Otherwise, your post is right on.

I think you're right about Parrish's motivations & frustrations (and, so, his inaccurate portrayal of the year.)

What makes his list so annoying is that he falls into the trite land of blaming the media, which has actually busted a lot of big stories this year (illegal spying for 1) (a year late, but better late than never.).

Parrish gives the Left a bad name because his stereotypical accusations fly in the face of reality.


At Eat The State, Geov claimed he's "the only consistently progressive columnist in Seattle."

You aren't consistently progressive, Josh? Do you have views on the estate tax you'd like to share with everybody? :)

"Consistently Progressive" ? Yuck. I'm lucky if I'm consistent.

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