L.A. Times Cuts Out McCain’s Remarks About Economy, Then Quotes Barack Obama Saying McCain is Scared to Talk About the Economy
Today John McCain finally began to tell the country about his own efforts to regulate Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and the Democrats’ incredible inaction. Yes, as many of us had urged, McCain finally talked about the economy, and the conservative blogs went nuts. Republican bloggers know that McCain has to talk about this, because the economy is the top issue concerning Americans, and McCain has a good story to tell — even if it’s one that the media has been ignoring.
Speaking of which:
How did the L.A. Times cover McCain’s stunning speech taking on this core economic concern?
By pretending McCain never said it, and by quoting Barack Obama talking about how McCain is scared to talk about the economy.
I’m not joking:
At a rally here, McCain also lumped Obama in with Chicago politics’ history of corruption, while Obama responded that the Republicans were fostering political shenanigans and scare tactics.
. . . .
“It’s as if somehow the usual rules don’t apply, and where other candidates have to explain themselves and their records, Sen. Obama seems to think he is above all that,” McCain told the cheering crowd. “Whatever the question, whatever the issue, there’s always a back story with Sen. Obama. All people want to know is, what has this man ever actually accomplished in government? What does he plan for America? In short, who is the real Barack Obama? But ask such questions and all you get in response is another barrage of angry insults.”
That’s precisely the point where McCain started to talk about Democratic responsibility for the economy. McCain’s very next words, which never appear in the L.A. Times, were these words:
Our current economic crisis is a good case in point. What was his actual record in the years before the great economic crisis of our lifetimes?
At which point McCain launched into the amazing speech quoted by Ed Morrissey at Hot Air, during which he laid out the case, at great length, for the Democrats’ responsibility for the mortgage crisis.
Does the L.A. Times report one word of that? No. Instead, they cut the quote of McCain’s speech short there, right before he talks about the economy, and proceed to quote Obama as claiming that McCain is scared to talk about the economy:
Speaking with reporters in Asheville, N.C., where he is studying for Tuesday’s debate, which is to focus on the economy and domestic issues, Obama pointed to recent reports that the McCain camp wanted to get away from economic issues, a topic that polls show benefits the Democrats.
“I was a little surprised over the last couple of days to hear Sen. McCain say, or Sen. McCain’s campaign say, that we want to turn the page on the discussion of the economy and a member of Sen. McCain’s campaign saying today that if we keep talking about the economic crisis we lose,” Obama said.
“I cannot imagine anything more important to talk about than the economic crisis, and the notion that we’d want to brush that aside and engage in the usual political shenanigans and scare tactics that have come to characterize too many political campaigns, I think [that] is not what the American people are looking for,” he said.
Of course, the economic crisis, and who is responsible for it, is exactly what McCain talked about.
But you’d never know that by reading the L.A. Times. The paper does make sure, however, to include this Obama attack on a nearly 20-year-old scandal barely involving John McCain:
Democrats, mindful that unanswered allegations hurt Massachusetts Sen. John Kerry’s presidential bid in 2004, hit back by portraying McCain as a friend of the same kind of bankers whose subprime mortgage dealings are causing a crisis on Wall Street.
Right: they talked about McCain’s (non-)involvement in the ancient Keating Five scandal. That is worthy of mention. But when McCain talked at length about the responsibility for the current crisis, all we’re told is that he’s scared to talk about the economy.
Orwellian, isn’t it?
But it’s business as usual at this newspaper.
P.S. They are suffering new cutbacks at the paper. I feel bad for the individuals, but I’m too angry to feel bad about the institution. To hell with the institution. They’re busy distorting facts, day in and day out, to torpedo John McCain’s campaign, and I’m supposed to feel bad?
UPDATE: The story has now been
substantially rewritten sent down the memory hole — but I have a screenshot to prove that I quoted the original version accurately:
rewritten new version is no better. McCain’s specific points about responsibility for the mortgage crisis are still not mentioned. But the story does have this race-baiting bit:
Pointing to the financial crisis and other dangers facing America, McCain added a dig at his opponent that seemed designed to highlight Obama’s unusual background, including a childhood in Indonesia and Hawaii: “I didn’t just show up out of nowhere. After all, America knows me; you know my strengths and my faults; you know my story and my convictions.”
Sounds to me like a dig at Obama’s inexperience. But every argument against Obama is racist; why not this one too?
UPDATE x2: Upon closer inspection, the new story isn’t “rewritten” — it is a completely new story, by a different author, at the same URL. They sent the first one down the memory hole.
It never happened. Understand? It never happened.
UPDATE x3: More detail about the disappearance of the original version, here.