Saturday, September 13, 2008

Obvious Bias

Before I begin this post, let me admit upfront that I like Sarah Palin. I believe it's because I can identify with her on many levels, not the least of which is our shared passion to see America remain the land of the free and the home of the brave. That stated, I watched the ABC interviews in which Charles "Charlie" Gibson attempted to prove his tough journalistic prowess while interviewing John McCain's running mate.

The New York Times ran an article on September 12 from which I've extracted the following:
"At times visibly nervous . . . Ms. Palin most visibly stumbled when she was asked by Mr. Gibson if she agreed with the Bush doctrine. Ms. Palin did not seem to know what he was talking about. Mr. Gibson, sounding like an impatient teacher, informed her that it meant the right of 'anticipatory self-defense.' "

In a brilliant response, Charles Krauthammer wrote in The Washington Post on September 13, that Charlie Gibson AND The New York Times both got it wrong.

He writes: "There is no single meaning of the Bush doctrine. In fact, there have been four distinct meanings, each one succeeding another over the eight years of this administration -- and the one Charlie Gibson cited is not the one in common usage today. It is utterly different.

He asked Palin, "Do you agree with the Bush doctrine?"

She responded, quite sensibly to a question that is ambiguous, "In what respect, Charlie?"

Sensing his "gotcha" moment, Gibson refused to tell her. After making her fish for the answer, Gibson grudgingly explained to the moose-hunting rube that the Bush doctrine "is that we have the right of anticipatory self-defense."

Krauthammer goes on to defend his contention that Gibson and The NY Times were both wrong by pointing out that HE, in fact, was the first person to ever use the phrase "Bush Doctrine" in an article published on June 4, 2001 in The Weekly Standard--verifiable by looking up "Bush Doctrine" in Wikipedia.

He continues: "If I were in any public foreign policy debate today, and my adversary were to raise the Bush doctrine, both I and the audience would assume -- unless my interlocutor annotated the reference otherwise -- that he was speaking about the grandly proclaimed (and widely attacked) freedom agenda of the Bush administration.

Not the Gibson doctrine of preemption...

Yes, Sarah Palin didn't know what it is. But neither does Charlie Gibson. And at least she didn't pretend to know -- while he looked down his nose and over his glasses with weary disdain, sighing and "sounding like an impatient teacher," as the Times noted. In doing so, he captured perfectly the establishment snobbery and intellectual condescension that has characterized the chattering classes' reaction to the mother of five who presumes to play on their stage."

Contrast the arrogance of the media elite against Sarah Palin (Krauthammer excepted) with their many polite excuses for Barack Obama's blunder when he said that he was campaigning in all 57 states..."He was tired from the tough campaigning." I'm sure he was. But I also know this and it's scary. There are 57 Islamic states. Could that have been his actual intent? I don't know and will never know. But this I do know--when he told George Stephanopoulos last Sunday morning that it was true that John McCain had never attacked his "MUSLIM" faith, I was watching.

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