Rightful complaints about the media abound. From the predominance of corporate control to stenographic 'balance' substituting for telling the truth to the stenographers actually being wildly biased to reflexively creating false equivalents, it's truly absurd this 'liberal bias' nonsense persists.
But rarely does a better opportunity for an apples to apples comparison of media coverage present itself than when comparing coverage of the conventions. Besides specific incidents of idiocy warranting Kardashian-esque coverage, political conventions are generally about narrative. And since narratives are creations of the media themselves, it gives us a view into the twisted minds of the corporate driven media, particularly the Villagers.
Who decides what the "expectations" of a convention are? Let's say it's the opposition and pretend that the Democrats got to decide what the Republicans needed to accomplish during their convention. Do you think that the Democrats would determine that all Romney and the Republicans needed to do was
Show that he's likable?C'mon Villagers. Mr. Burns and Smithers are running for President and VP, and you are telling me that all they need to do over three days of uncontested, choreographed verbal and videographic fellatio is create the impression that Mr. Burns is a swell guy?
Nothing about proving how his top down polices will help us all? Nothing about the details of those policies? Nothing about how we can trust him despite the veils in which he's shrouded his career in vulture capitalism? Nothing about demonstrating his position isn't in line with the bat shit craziness of the Republican platform?
No. All Romney and the Republicans needed to do over the course of three days with the national spotlight is what Stuart Smalley was able to do in two minutes with a mirror. He's good enough. He's smart enough. And gosh darn it, people like him.
So now it is time for the Democrats and Obama to have the Villagers set the expectations for them. And of course, the Villagers threw them a softball, just like they did the Republicans.....BWAHAHAHAHA!!! Wouldn't that be a hoot? No, what they did is demonstrate their blatant Republican bias. Setting the expectation of the convention as...
Obama must show we are better off than four years ago...is a Republican wet dream.
If this is the expectation, the Democratic Convention is predestined to fail. There's plenty of ways to address the question. And each and everyone of them sucks. What's more, because it has been declared the official 'expectation' the Democrats can't brush it off and answer the question they want to answer.
The best Democrats and Obama can possibly do with that question is say 'yes, just look at these accomplishments.' But those accomplishments won't matter, because what the Villagers are really saying is Obama and the Democrats must prove to the nation that the personal economic circumstances for Americans have improved.
Even if there are some numbers out there that might show people are better off, it doesn't matter. People simply don't feel that they are better off now than four years ago, and if Obama and the Democrats even try to make that case, the Villagers will pounce on them as being 'out of touch with what real Americans are experiencing.'
But what this situation subtly shows is how much bullshit the new definition the Villagers have given to 'objective journalism'. The Villagers will tell you 'everything is fair so long as you give both sides an opportunity to make their case.'
Bullshit. Bullshit, bullshit, BULLSHIT!!!. The fact is, the media doesn't give "both" sides or give "both" sides equal opportunity to make their case.
When the Republicans repeatedly declare "Obama's policies have failed" there is nobody jumping in to point out an equivalent, no matter how much John Boehner and Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan are on the record declaring their objective is to make sure Obama failed, even at the expense of tanking the economy.
And so here we have the Villagers not only setting an impossible to meet expectation a week after giving Mitt Romney a cupcake that he managed to smear all over his face anyway, but we have them choosing sides.
Asking whether "people are better off than they were four years ago" while not mentioning, and actively suppressing, Republican hostage taking, obstruction, and intransigence is asking one party and one candidate to take full responsibility for the situation where both sides have at least equal culpability.
The Villagers have decided. The economy will be solely blamed on Obama. The willful tanking of our economy for political gain the Congressional Republicans have engaged in will not be mentioned this election season, if ever.