Patterico's Pontifications


L.A. Times Editors: What Should We Say About Scott Brown? Anyone Have Obama’s Talking Points Handy?

Filed under: Dog Trainer,General — Patterico @ 12:35 am

An article in tomorrow’s L.A. Times describes the litany of missteps by Martha Coakley — from running an ad equating the World Trade Center with greed to saying that Catholics shouldn’t work in emergency rooms to calling Curt Schilling a Yankee fan to running an ad that misspells the name of the state she wants to represent, and so on and so on. The numerous polls showing Scott Brown ahead are given prominent play.

Ha, ha! Of course, the article does not say one word about any of that! I just made all of that up.

You didn’t believe me, did you??

So how does the L.A. Times cover the story of Scott Brown’s surge against this clownish candidate?

Would it help you to know what Obama’s take is? OK. It is that Scott Brown would endanger his health care plan. This is the concern he expresses in a robocall:

In Washington, I’m fighting to curb the abuses of a health insurance industry that routinely denies care. . . . [I]t’s clear now that the outcome of these and other fights will probably rest on one vote in the United States Senate.

Now do you have a guess as to the L.A. Times spin?

Healthcare overhaul may depend on Massachusetts Senate race

President Obama and other Democrats are in a fight for Ted Kennedy’s seat and his cause, campaigning for Martha Coakley over Republican Scott Brown, who could vote down the bill if seated in time.

President Obama on Friday threw himself into the Massachusetts Senate race where a surging Republican candidacy imperils his signature healthcare plan.

A Republican win Tuesday in the race to replace the late Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D-Mass.) would strip Democrats of their 60-vote supermajority in the Senate and allow the GOP to block legislation with filibusters. Healthcare legislation has passed both chambers on party-line votes, but a reconciled final version must still be written and approved by both houses.

Yup, that lines up pretty well with the White House talking points. Thursday’s shocker of a poll showing Brown up by 4 points is mentioned . . . in the 10th paragraph. (Will it be past the jump in the print edition?) The poll is not mentioned in the headline. Or the opening paragraphs. Because the thrust of the story is not Brown’s momentum.

Left entirely unmentioned: Brown’s internal poll showing him up by 11 points — or Coakley’s internal poll showing Brown up by 3.

See, I don’t think Obama said it was OK to mention those. Hopefully that explains the omission to your satisfaction.

L.A. Times print readers have been kept in the dark about the Brown surge until now. Before today’s article, the previous newsprint assessment of Brown’s chances came Thursday, when the paper’s readers learned that Brown “appears to be within striking distance” of Coakley, with “some polls” showing the race is “as close as a few points.”

Now Democrats are reduced to claiming that Coakley is “within striking distance” of Brown. What a difference a day makes.

One wonders: if Brown actually wins, will this paper’s print readers be caught by surprise?

37 Responses to “L.A. Times Editors: What Should We Say About Scott Brown? Anyone Have Obama’s Talking Points Handy?”

  1. I do like how they make it clear that a Brown victory would be a repudiation of the little president man and his sick, destructive policies.

    happyfeet (e9e587)

  2. i’d like to make it clear that there is absolutely *no* connection between the piss poor writing, non-existent ethics and ridiculously biased stories that pass for news coverage in the Times and their shrinking circulation and ad numbers, and you’d be tea-bagging racist if you thought otherwise.

    redc1c4 (fb8750)

  3. One can only pray that this is the start of something big.
    They will lie, they will steal they will cheat.
    Hopefully they will lose.

    Why the brackets around the I?
    Was something in the quote condensed?

    Paul Albers (7adcc2)

  4. The liberal media…like the wicked witch of the East, is melting away. Just listen to them wail as they shrink…it’s music to my ears.

    Herman Husband (2b1a22)

  5. In one way Pres. Obama is doing us a favor in going to Mass. to campaign for her. It will be harder for the Dems to say the vote is not a referendum on national issues once he is there.

    I’m tempted to declare that saying “Curt Schilling is a Yankees fan” is the new standard in political ineptness, but in retrospect I think it was a reasonable attempt when she had nothing better to say, which is the problem. I think the context was asking about what would be the effect if Guiliani came to campaign for Brown, and she treid to deflect the question with the humerous comment that ‘he’s a Yankees fan’. I think that led the interviewer to ask about Schilling who has come out for Brown, and she simply repeated her remark (which I guess would be true if you were talking about Johnny Damon).

    So, in context it wasn’t as idiotic as it first appears, but it does display that the munitions bunker doesn’t have much left in it. I’m sure that if she could link Brown to the Knicks and Yankees she would pick up a few votes in Boston.

    MD in Philly (d4668b)

  6. The LAT can’t tell all the truth at once! That would overwhelm the delicate constitutions of its paeloleftist core readership.

    Brother Bradley J. Fikes, C.O.R. (9eb641)

  7. After a while, you’d think the lefty media would give up the nonsense and at least try some balance.

    But then you’d be thinking wrong.

    KingShamus (fb8597)

  8. And this AP article about Coakley’s bid for a “historic” win also displays a masterful grasp of journalistic evasion:

    BOSTON — For much of her campaign, Martha Coakley steered clear of the Kennedy mystique, methodically crafting a low-key campaign to fill the late Edward Kennedy’s U.S. Senate seat the way the seasoned prosecutor would build a case in court.

    But with the wheels threatening to come off the campaign and a double-digit lead eroding to a dead heat in the polls, Coakley, the state’s attorney general, is banking that a deep-seated loyalty to Kennedy among Massachusetts Democrats will be enough to propel her to victory.

    Coakley has publicly accepted the endorsement of Kennedy’s widow, Vicki Kennedy, and nephew, the former U.S. Rep. Joseph Kennedy. Vicki Kennedy has also made a fundraising appeal and cut a television ad on Coakley’s behalf.

    Some Democrats are worried Coakley has been too methodical in the six-week sprint to Tuesday’s special election.

    That’s right – Coakley’s in trouble because she’s “too methodical.” No mention of her flubs, of course. Coakley’s press releases don’t mention that.

    Brother Bradley J. Fikes, C.O.R. (9eb641)

  9. THIS is why the Old Media is dying. If Brown wins on Tuesday, people who only get their news from the LATimes are going to go “Wait, what? How did that happen?”

    And they’ll be tired of being intentionally left in the dark.

    Techie (43d092)

  10. […] up is Patterico who snarks the L.A. Times’ complete inability to cover actual news surrounding political tsunamis in any way, shape or form. An article in tomorrow’s L.A. Times […]

    Happy MLK weekend to everyone … at Bride of Rove (ca7f8e)

  11. methodical, ‘that word you’re using, doesn’t mean what you think it does”

    ian cormac (dfb136)

  12. The LAT is quite a bit like the old Pravda – but without the charm.

    Dmac (539341)

  13. Bradley’s right. If Scott Brown wins, the LA Times should either withhold publication of the election results or bury an ambiguous reference in an obscure back section of the paper.

    LAT should not resort to reporting false results, instead they should avoid the topic till other news outlets have prepared LAT’s readers to learn the shocking truth. These devices should not be considered journalistic malpractice, it’s simply the humanitarian way of sharing inconvenient truths.

    ropelight (67ffc0)

  14. The poor Times. Their world is moving away from them like a ship leaving and they are left on the dock. They don’t understand why this is happening and can only hope that the story will turn out to be a bad dream.

    They could, for example, be writing about Japan as it approaches hyperinflation with policies similar to Obama’s. But that would not fit the hopenchange story.

    Well, I respect their willingness to go down with the ship.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  15. And it will come as a surprise to no one that the Boston Globe is also heavily in the tank for Coakley. I won’t link to it, but if you want to absolutely retch you should go their site and read their editorial board’s endorsement of her. While there, do a search on “Coakely” and “Schilling” together to see if they have mentioned anything about that major gaffe. Spoiler alert: as of this moment, they have not.

    JVW (48cbba)

  16. Obama and the LA Times have tried so hard to prove Republicans irrelevant, if Brown does win Obama is going to look like a moron. He has a super majority, yet can’t get anything done (besides a failing stimulus). His inexperience is showing and the irony of him calling out a vice presidential candidate for lack of experience is glaring. He may even hurt Coakley. People in the U.S. don’t like Chicago politics and even more people are crossing party lines because they don’t like a “good ole boys” type of system. Obama isn’t the messiah he was a year ago, so Coakley may be making a stupid move in wanting him to come to MA.

    BTW, GatewayPundit it reporting that Brown is on top in absentee ballots:

    Audacity (2fd5ad)

  17. Curt Schilling responds:

    “I’ve been called a LOT of things… But never, and I mean never, could anyone ever make the mistake of calling me a Yankee fan. Well, check that, if you didn’t know what the hell is going on in your own state maybe you could….”

    Sean P (334463)

  18. What if she loses by double digits?

    lonetown (d7ec3b)

  19. lonetown’s words just sent a shiver up my leg.

    Old Coot (d2bd0f)

  20. One wonders: if Brown actually wins, will this paper’s print readers be caught by surprise?

    Quite a few of them would be caught by surprise to find the Sun rising in the East.

    AD - RtR/OS! (98852f)

  21. My question is, if Brown wins, will the Times report it ? They are so far into cloud cuckoo land now, why stop ?

    I have a hilarious You-Tube on the story on my blog. When it gets to You Tube, you are looking pretty silly.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  22. The word will be, “Unexpectedly,…”

    Franko (909dca)

  23. I think a comment I made in response to Mike K @ 2:52pm is caught in moderation.

    AD - RtR/OS! (98852f)

  24. I’ve stopped reading the LATimes, in part to protest against this sort of thing, but mostly because it’s a boring, badly written, barely edited, spectacularly irrelevant parody of a big-city paper. Folks: don’t keep wailing about the Times’ many failures….JUST STOP BUYING IT. Let’s drive them to the ruin they so richly deserve with our steadfast apathy.

    Kevin Stafford (abdb87)

  25. The article actually ran in the Saturday paper in Column one as “Health Bill May Ride on Election.” And yes, anything that was not about the Obamacare horse race was past the jump.

    Again, it is like the poll that asked “If Obama’s health bill fails, who will be to blame?” — always forgetting that the odds play might be to take credit.

    Kevin Murphy (3c3db0)

  26. One wonders: if Brown actually wins, will this paper’s print readers be caught by surprise?

    Sadly for the Democrats (and the Times), no. The internet has so pervaded our society that anyone who would bestir themselves to vote has much better news sources than the quite pitiful LA Times. I keep meaning to cancel tha paper, but never do. Habits die hard.

    Kevin Murphy (3c3db0)

  27. #20: Quite a few of them would be caught by surprise to find the Sun rising in the East.

    Comment by AD – RtR/OS!

    not really: The East is Red.

    (no relation to me. %-)

    redc1c4 (fb8750)

  28. “Red sky at night, sailor’s delight;
    red sky at morning, sailor take warning.”

    AD - RtR/OS! (98852f)

  29. FOX News: “We report, you decide”
    LAT: “We decide what to ‘report'”

    Rolling Stone*: “All the news that fits”
    LAT: “Whatever fits the talking points becomes news”

    [* Yes, their fellow leftie-rag]

    Icy Texan (fb1d52)

  30. You’ve got to love the Times. I remember a story once that read like a strange case of a group of workers in a food processing plant who sounded as though they were conspiring over their lunch hour to steal identities. I mean, 40 of them are all rounded up and arrested for identity theft. That was the story. What was omitted was the fact that they were all suspected illegal aliens and the identify theft consisted of using false SSNs. None of that was in the story. Love that L.A. Times.

    Beacharoni (9126d8)

  31. Lived in LA for 25 years and I don’t know a single man who reads the LAT. Several women do but I think they mainly read the Arts and Fashion stuff. Who reads it? Inquiring Minds want to know…..

    Howard Veit (0d2b4f)

  32. The Times, and the Tribune Co. as a whole, are truly hanging on by a thread. As of January 1, former employees are prohibited from lump sum withdrawal of the cash from their “Cash Balance” retirement plans, even though they are 100% vested.

    They don’t have the money to cover it, according Hewitt, the plan administrator.

    Matador (176445)

  33. Such a great newspaper back when I was a young man growing up behind the Orange Curtain… owned by the Chandler family, as I recall…

    a pity, that…

    GeneralMalaise (9927ac)

  34. On a related note, the OC Register published a “news story” in the News section about those awful corporations who want to repeal the draconian green laws coming into effect written by a woman from an advocacy group! Named only in the byline. Guess it saves money by printing the press releases directly instead of retyping them.

    And they wonder why no one trusts or reads newspapers any more.

    The ‘story’.

    Patricia (b05e7f)

  35. Patricia,
    The story was written by a man. It’s still a shallow story, however.

    The self-described “investigative reporter”, who is a graduate journalist student, would get a far juicier story looking into Climategate. But of course that wouldn’t be politically correct. Can’t write anything that might cast doubt on AGW.

    Brother Bradley J. Fikes, C.O.R. (9eb641)

  36. To my complete surprise, the California Watch story Patricia referred to was written by a former intern for The Nation.

    I’m so glad California Watch has taken such a dramatic break from journalism’s sorry past of viewing news from a left-wing prism.

    Brother Bradley J. Fikes, C.O.R. (9eb641)

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