Tuesday, February 19, 2008

NBC's got some explaining to do

NBC has some explaining to do for this obvious stunt MSNBC pulled. And I hope they do it soon, because I'm damn mad.

I wasn't even going to dignify the wingnutosphere's uproar over Michelle Obama's quote with a response, because I knew the story was going to be debunked somehow. But the way it was discredited just shows how eager the media is to swiftboat the Obama campaign.

It turns out MSNBC deleted a word from Michelle Obama's statement, which changed the entire meaning of it. This was intentional. Most people who studied broadcasting in college even in the pre-digital days could do this with a razor and splicing tape and make the modified clip look real, and do a much better job of it than MSNBC did. But when MSNBC edited the C-SPAN clip, they did such a poor job that I can't believe they expected people not to notice.

Real quote: "... I am really proud of my country ..."

Modified quote: "... I am proud of my country ..."

The word MSNBC deleted is the key. Here the adverb 'really' expresses reinforcement of an existing feeling. By deleting the word, MSNBC was trying to question Michelle Obama's patriotism. What she was actually saying was that she was proud of America before, but that this pride has now been highlighted. That she had pride in the country before is actually a good thing, but MSNBC is so untrustworthy that it changed her actual remark in order to change its meaning.

Here's an analogy: I was angry at the media before MSNBC's hoax was exposed, and I thought it was impossible to be angrier. But now this anger is reinforced by this story. If I used the word 'really' to describe my current feeling, it would be simply for emphasis and would just underscore the sentiment of anger that already existed.

You don't believe it was edited? Well, here's the original clip:


Here's MSNBC's bad edit of that C-SPAN clip:


Are we supposed to fall for that shit? MSNBC did a shitty editing job, and people are expected to think it's real?

After the media trashed Dukakis, we really shouldn't be surprised by the media pulling a stunt like this - other than the fact they did such an incredibly bad job of it. Not only is this dishonest, but the very quality of this fraud is simply horrible. If anyone actually believes the MSNBC version of the quote is correct after seeing the clips, they're stupid. That's all there is to it.

I'm a Green, but I'm almost inclined to endorse Barack Obama outright just because the media committed such a poorly executed deception that the candidate must not be too bad if they have to resort to this. (I haven't endorsed him, because the DLC still has months to get into his head.)

Here's what MSNBC's hoax is like. Let's say I want people to think I'm taller than I am. So I take a real photo:

And do this:

That's exactly what it's like.

The FCC ruled in 1969 that it's a serious offense for TV or radio stations to distort news. The FCC should come down hard on NBC for this fraud. Very hard.


  1. The edit job is atrocious.

    I can't believe our universities are turning out people with such shitty tape editing skills. Probably some illiterate jock who got a pass all through school.

  2. Now it turns out they did this not just with one clip but with two...

    Dumb dumb dumb.

  3. The other one though is Fox so they're in on this scam too.

    The edit is hard to catch but it's there. (Both versions are up on youtube.)

    Is CNN going to make it a trifecta by doing the same thing.

  4. I forgot to mention this...

    The various links on youtube are flooded with racist comments about Michelle and Barack Obama. Which I'm not repeating because we've all heard it from Rush/Hannity/KRC/WLW etc for years.

    We have to call it out for what it is. The GOP has appealed to the suburban racists since Nixon.

    The Repukes are going to play the race card, we have to have the courage to call them on it right to their faces.

  5. Watching the videos Tim linked it's hard to tell if the video just skipped or if it was edited. Could have been intentional, but maybe not.

    Annrk, I think you mean bigotry when you accuse suburbanites of racism. However, let's be clear that simply disagreeing with a candidate or disliking him does not make one a bigot, nor does it make one a racist.

    Perhaps one of the positive things that will come out of Obama's presidency will be we can finally answer the lingering question of whether institutional racism still exists in this country. The answer will be a resounding "No." There will always be simple-minded bigots, but race is no longer an obstacle to succeeding in America. Barack and Michelle Obama are proof of this.

  6. Almost every postwar suburb in America was founded or developed as a "whites only" exclave. They used to all have a restrictive covenant, but now they use other techniques (targeted marketing etc.)

    The Repukes play the race card in every election for the past 40 years.

  7. Quite the contrary, it is the Democrats who prey on poor minorities by convincing them they can't succeed in America without the party's government programs. But the Democratic Party's aims are not noble, they are collecting easy votes. Their programs have had an abysmal rate of success getting people out of poverty.

    Inexplicably, the GOP has simply conceded the black vote to the Democrats.

  8. Scheff, if any of this were true, I think poor minorities would be perfectly capable of figuring this out.

  9. So you believe the poor can't possibly succeed without welfare programs? I guess that would make you a good Democrat.

  10. You didn't address the point, scheffbd.

  11. Not all have fallen for the Democrats' schemes. Those are the ones most likely to rise out of poverty because they're not waiting for someone else to take care of them.