Patterico's Pontifications


Lefty Lee Stranahan on the Blaze Piece on O’Keefe

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 10:48 pm

At, it’s all Lee Stranahan, all the time! But if he keeps writing good posts, I’m going to keep linking them.

How do you stop effective techniques from your political adversaries?

The Andrew Breitbart / Shirley Sherrod controversy, the Hannah Giles / James O’Keefe ACORN sting, and the current James O’Keefe / Simon Templar / Shaughn Adeleye NPR sting all have a common technique that been used to attempt to discredit them – call it a Misdirection Pile-on.

In all three cases – Sherrod, ACORN, and NPR – there were proven issues that resulted in immediate action; people fired, placed on leave and organizational defunding. Whether you agree or disagree with the outcome, you can’t argue with that effectiveness. Because a group like Media Matters for America has been so demonstrably ineffective in defending these liberal institutions, they need to try to weaken any future attacks. That’s precisely why organizations like MMfA are so desperate to discredit Andrew Breitbart, James O’Keefe and (as I’ve seen firsthand) anyone who works with, defends or even sort of likes them.

So here’s the blueprint for Misdirection Pile-on : when with incontrovertible video evidence, gin up some faux-troversy that will get the liberal base to ignore the real controversy and focus on some side issue that you can beat into the ground through the left wing blogosphere’s echo chamber and (in a slightly subdued form) into the mainstream media that sympathizes with you. Use meaningless catch phrases like ‘heavily edited’ and watch gleefully when they become common parlance.

Lee goes on to explain how he believes the Blaze piece about O’Keefe’s editing did just that. The focus is a comparison of what the media initially found compelling about the video, compared to what the Blaze focused on.

One thing I noticed: Lee has not (as of yet) provided a detailed picking-apart of the Blaze article, point by point, regarding each video alleging selective editing. (I already shouldered the burden on the key points here.) After reading Lee’s latest piece, I asked him: what about the Blaze’s detailed criticism — specifically the minor points that I didn’t already address? Do you have anything to say about that?

He replied that he does, and it’s coming up. So, stay tuned.

P.S. Here’s a bonus link to a New York Post column about O’Keefe: In praise of muckrakers.

5 Responses to “Lefty Lee Stranahan on the Blaze Piece on O’Keefe”

  1. i still say this is all Bush’s fault.

    redc1c4 (fb8750)

  2. Every single news piece in every television news show is “heavily edited.” But unlike something on 60 Minutes, James O’Keefe (and Lila Rose as well) post the entire unedited tapes online. So James O’Keefe maintains a higher journalistic standard than 60 Minutes, &c. Does James O’Keefe highlight the “juicy” parts? Of course. What journalist doesn’t?

    ConMan (87238b)

  3. Remember the news program that did the interview with the wrestler and edited his comments? They asked about steroid use, and the response was made out to say “hey, you can’t prove that I take them”, and it was only because McMahon had his own cameras in the room could he protect himself and his talent by releasing that bit without edits.

    60 Minutes did it to Rush Limbaugh at one point. They asked “Do you do this for the money?” His answer as shown was “Of course I do it for the money”. His WHOLE answer was “Of course I do it for the money. Do you do your job for free?”

    Scott Jacobs (d027b8)

  4. Until the internet came along, the MSM could get away with their “editing.” Now, when they try to pull such a stunt, there are multiple sources of voice & video at most events and many people being interview record the interview for their own protection. Edward R. Murrow could not get away with his McCarthy “hit piece” today nor could the “Big Three – ABC, CBS & NBC” get away with how they reported the McCarthy Hearings or the Viet-Nam War. Has anyone noticed that “Harvest of Shame” is still available to researchers & scholars but that, after the one showing, no one has been allowed to see Murrow’s smear job on McCarthy. Murrow & Friendly even refused to let McCarthy see and use the kenoscope in preparing his rebuttal. Great journalistic heros, my eye! Murrow & Friendy make Rather & Mapes look good.

    Michael M. Keohane (996c34)

  5. Mr. Stranahan is in grave danger of becoming an adult.

    Chuck Roast (d84e7c)

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