Over the past couple of weeks, conservatives have noted the media’s toxic double-standard in reporting two different natural disasters; their hyperbolic and sensationalistic coverage of Hurricane Katrina, which was as saturated as the sodden delta soil…
…versus their virtual ban on coverage of the catastrophic rain storms that struck Cajun country over the past few weeks.
We’ll come back to that.
Brown-Nosing Sycophants: On The Media is an American Public Media is a NPR show on, well, the media – in the same sense that an infomercial about Pawn America is an investigation of the ethics of the short-term credit industry.
The show is produced and narrated by two putatively-ink-stained wretches, Bob Garfield and Brooke Gladstone, who report on, well, the media with a fervor that indicates they really really really don’t want to get disinvited from any of New York’s journo hangouts; within the world of journalism, the program comforts the comfortable and afflicts the afflicted. “OTM” is the figurative exclamation point on the end of “NPR has a liberal bias!”
And they addressed the disparity in their most recent broadcast.
Profiles In Courage: Oh, I slay me. The hell they did.
No, they didn’t “address” the disparity in coverage. What? Over a bunch of cajuns?
What they did – you can listen for yourself, starting around 20 minutes into the audio stream – was claim “the dog ate the entire American mainstream media’s homework.
The transcript isn’t up yet – but the gist of the story is this:
- Unlike Katrina, there wasn’t a big buildup; since the disaster sprang from common rainstorm from a stalled frontal system, the National Weather Service (NWS) didn’t give the customary several days of warning before the system hit.
- Since there wasn’t a big buildup, the media had no means to know they had to be in the neighborhood for the story.
Of course, it’s baked wind. Most of what passes for “news” gets covered with no “buildup” or notice at all; car crashes, mass shootings, planes crashing into skyscrapers? Somehow the media managed to get people onto the scene and try something that passes for “journalism” (I’ll be charitable) these days.
Even without a “buildup”, there were a few unmistakeable signs that a highly-trained and experienced “journalist” might have been able to spot; an entire part of an entire state completely shut down and flooded out of business might be one’s first clue.
But I suspect the “lack of buildup” for any disaster story started in January 2009.