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Opening The Files: 10/08/07

Of Symbolism and Sophistry

There was a lot of news to choose from for this weeks OTF. But there was a reoccurring theme I noticed throughout. Whether it was Bush's veto of expanding health care for kids, his administration's endorsement of torture, the phony flap over Obama's lack of patriotic pins or the righties rushing to Rush's side in the phony soldier faux pas, the underlying theme may well have been:

We don't play by the same rules you do.

Indeed that theme has become prevalent within the current state of political discourse and governance. Keen observers will of course know this has been present for some time. But the casual observer, sadly a large chunk of the general electorate, can be easily taken in by a particular slant on any given story or the lack of in depth coverage for that matter. We hear all about the latest news on Britney Spears or dieting tips but when it comes to such things as the war in Iraq, the drumbeat for war with Iran or the slow dismantlement of the Constitution, the media has been failing in their role as conduits to truth.

And if nothing else, the righties have become very deft at manipulating this phenomenon. They have honed the skill of emphasizing symbolism over substance to a fine art. And unfortunately for the rest of us, far too few in the media have been willing to cast a skeptical eye at the various wares that are forever being pawned off as the genuine article.

It should be noted that some media figures like Chris Matthews and Katie Couric are speaking up. Better late than never I suppose.

The Washington Post, meanwhile, offered up their fluffer services to help some soul-searching ex-loyal Bushies get a restful nights sleep. Carpetbagger noticed that Bush's Brain wasn't likely to be amongst those whose sleep, perchance, would be interrupted by his conscience.

A study finds the GOP has a problem with their religious base who say that the Bush years may well come to be seen as an anomaly. It's hard to see why since, as Paul Krugman reports, Bush is far more of a modern conservative than you might think.

But there are those still willing to pray for Bush and Speaker Nancy Pelosi appears to be one of them. Predictably, Fox News has to ask if they are the right kinds of prayers.

I've noticed something about what the media chooses to focus on. First it was John Edwards' haircut, then it was Clinton's cleavage and now it's the missing flare on Obama's chest. If they keep working their way south, will we be eventually be wondering whether boxers or briefs is more befitting of a Commander-in-Chief? Perhaps codpieces will be back in vogue by then.

(Filed at State of the Day and All Spin Zone)


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