I'm still trying to do some research at FreeRepublic and found a thread there tonight discussing an article written by Michael Barone for the 2/21/05 issue of USNews.com (the online edition of the US News & World Report), Blogosphere Politics
. He talks extensively about dKos:
The Democratic Internet constituency was and is motivated by one thing more than anything else: hatred of George W. Bush. To see that you only have to take a look at dailykos.com, run by Democratic consultant Markos Moulitsas, which gets 400,000 page views a day--far more than any other political weblog--and which received funding from the Dean campaign (which Moulitsas disclosed). It seethes with hatred of Bush, constantly attacks Republicans, and excoriates Democrats who don't oppose Bush root and branch.
Wow. Seething with hatred. But what about the right Blogosphere?
The focus of hatred in the right blogosphere is not Kerry or the Democrats but what these bloggers call Mainstream Media, or MSM. They argue, correctly in my view, that the New York Times, CBS News, and others distorted the news in an attempt to defeat Bush in 2004.
He quotes "dailykos.com" as follows:
When four American contractors were killed in Iraq in April 2004, dailykos.com wrote, "I feel nothing over the death of the mercenaries. They are there to wage war for profit. Screw them." This repulsive comment produced no drop-off in page views. This was what the left blogosphere wanted.
It's telling that he doesn't quote any certain poster or Kos himself - just dailykos.com. This journalist is attempting to distinguish the differences between the left and right blogospheres - without demonstrating an understanding of a blog.
Barone talks about the "right blogosphere's greatest triumph" with the Dan Rather situation and how the work of the right blogosphere brought about his downfall.
MSM tried to defeat Bush but instead only discredited itself. The Pew Center's post-election poll showed a sharp decline in the credibility of newspapers and broadcast TV and a sharp increase in reliance on cable news, especially Fox News, and radio.
Completely lacking is any mention of the left blogsphere's PropaGannon success. He closes with:
So what hath the blogosphere wrought? The left blogosphere has moved the Democrats off to the left, and the right blogosphere has undermined the credibility of the Republicans' adversaries in Old Media. Both changes help Bush and the Republicans.
From start to finish, an obviously well researched article, well thought out, written by an intelligent journalist from the SCLM. Right.