August 18, 2005
Managing the news for Hillary's sakeBy Noel Sheppard
One hot and humid weekend this past July, America's leading Democrats —— including some of the early favorites for that party's 2008 presidential nomination such as Senator Hillary Clinton (D—NY), Senator Evan Bayh (D—IN), Governor Tom Vilsack (D—IA), and Governor Mark Warner (D—VA) —— gathered in Columbus, Ohio at a conference hosted by the centrist Democratic Leadership Council.
Predictably, the press had a hard time controlling its glee when Senator Clinton was announced as the point—person to lead the DLC's new political offensive —— code name 'American Dream Initiative' —— to define the party's agenda for 2006 and 2008.
As Ron Brownstein of the Los Angeles Times put it:
Unfortunately, Mr. Brownstein —— much like the rest of the mainstream print media as far as I can tell —— chose not to be completely honest with his readers —— or the American public for that matter —— concerning just how far to the right Mrs. Clinton was going by affiliating herself with this organization, and, maybe most important, what was actually in this 'Dream Initiative'.
In fact, from the Google searches I've done, the only major news outlet that reported the full agenda addressed at this conference was Bloomberg.
Why might that be?
Well, let's take a look at the laundry list discussed at this conference as the DLC's 'blueprint for change' reported by Bloomberg's Brendan Murray on July 25:
I guess that about explains why nobody other than Bloomberg reported this.
After all, it certainly won't be easy for Senator Clinton to win re—election in liberal New York in 2006, or to garner enough delegates to capture her party's presidential nomination in 2008, if she runs on a platform to increase the size of our military, assure college access to military recruiters, cut a variety of taxes, and reduce the number of federal government employees.
Undoubtedly, such proposals won't play very well in the nation's bluest states, as cutting taxes, expanding the military, and shrinking the government are not typically associated with core liberal values. Obviously, Hillary and her handlers are cognizant of this fact, and likely appreciate that the press decided to bury this side of the story.
As a result, this allows Hillary to continue to appear liberal to folks in New York as well as the part of her constituency nationwide that votes in primaries. Subsequently, after holding her seat, and winning her party's nomination, due to her affiliation with the DLC, and the agenda that is this 'Dream Initiative', Hillary will be able to present herself to the American people as being much more moderate than they previously believed.
Yet, it is quite obvious from the absence of media coverage concerning the specifics of this agenda that America's news editors and producers were all quite aware that its dissemination at this time would not be in the best interest of Senator Clinton or the Democratic Party, and, as a result, consciously omitted this from their reports on this conference.
What this despicably yet perfectly demonstrates is just how far America's mainstream press representatives are willing to go to get Senator Clinton in the White House in 2008.
However, the truly scary denouement is that if they won't accurately report what was discussed at a conference like this —— with hundreds of press representatives running around trying to get interviews as well as photographs with their favorite politician —— what wouldn't our glorious press do to ensure the return of their Lincoln Bedroom—renting heroes to the scene of their most heinous crimes?
Welcome to the American Mainstream Media, ladies and gentleman: Where we report all the news that fits our agenda.
Noel Sheppard is an economist, business owner, and member of the Media Research Center's NewsBusters squad. He welcomes your feedback at firstname.lastname@example.org.