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October 15, 2009

Howard Kurtz, Horror Movie Retard

Ever watch a horror movie where there's tons of vampire-shit going down -- bitten necks, bodies drained of blood, wolves suddenly baying in suburban subdivisions, mysterious nosferatu-looking cats who just took over the local funeral home?

And for almost an hour of the film's running time, no one will even utter the word "vampire." They keep suggesting serial killers, animal attacks, and maybe the power lines are sending out strange radiation which is making the wolves all bitey.

Because, in the movie's fictive universe as in real life, vampires don't exist (well... except for this one time), so it seems insane to even postulate the existence of such things. Better to claim that maybe all these transparently-vampirish shenanigans are the work of "some local kids trying to scare us."

Enter Howard Kurtz, Horror Movie Retard. He sees a lot of vampy kind of stuff happening all around him, but he's furiously groping for alternative explanations. Because, you know -- vampires don't exist. So it would be insane to suggest that dude with the chalk-white skin and talons who just flew 100 feet might be something besides a a serial killer hopped up on the kind of meth that bestows the power of unassisted flight.

Saint Olympia is getting the full media treatment.

By providing the only Republican vote for Obamacare, she is being hailed as a courageous statesman (stateswoman?). Charlie Gibson interviewed her live on "World News." She made the morning TV rounds, mapped strategy in the Situation Room, played Hardball. Dana Milbank's tribute to her political skill (and gibes at her studied indecision) landed atop The Washington Post's front page.

Check out this AP piece: "Forget Sarah Palin. The female maverick of the Republican Party is Sen. Olympia Snowe. . . . 'When history calls, history calls,' Snowe told her colleagues on the Senate Finance Committee, several hours into the debate."

I don't want to be too snarky here. Snowe is a diligent senator, she's not a grandstander, and she was clearly struggling to do what she sees as the right thing. But Republican defectors tend to get good press, especially, as in this case, if they're helping salvage a Democratic president's top domestic priority.

Imagine the coverage a Democratic senator would have gotten by breaking with his party to help George Bush pass his Social Security plan. No one hailed Joe Lieberman (yes, he's an independent, but he caucuses with the Dems) for turning against Obama on the Baucus bill.

Maybe it comes down to this: It seems like this health care debate has lasted longer than the Afghan war. Snowe may have brought the legislation one step closer to passing. I suspect most journalists want something to pass so it feels like we spent all that time on something momentous. If health reform goes down in flames, then we've expended all this energy on a mere footnote.

Notice his one step forward, two steps back approach here: He's willing to concede a sort of media bias -- but not ideological or political bias, just a purely neutral bias (as regards politics) in favor of things coming to fruition.

Right. And we all remember how the press cheerleaded Bush's Social Security reform initiative, and how dispirited they were that it came to naught; and how they heaped praise on those Democrats who crossed the aisle to pass Bush's tax cuts.

Yep, I remember that, Howie. I remember that like I remember my creepy next-door-neighbor who had a hooker over and the next day the news reported she was found by the railroad tracks minus one head.

In Howard Kurtz' world, "liberal media bias" is as insane to posit as the existence of vampires, so despite glaring evidence of liberal media bias, he can only guess that maybe there's a rabid wolf out there that somehow can drain blood from its victims.


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posted by Ace at 04:31 PM

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