The Brock-Dowd Gambit

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The Brock-Dowd Gambit

The Mas­ter: Oh! Now I can say I was provoked.

Doc­tor Who: Utopia 2007

Sam Hous­ton: In 1815, Napoleon escaped from Elba. He moved swiftly to con­sol­i­date before the Grand Alliance could move against him. Welling­ton, with fewer men, retreated ahead of Napoleon, forc­ing Napoleon to chase him through Bel­gium. Welling­ton had a vision of a bat­tle­field, he did not know where it was, but he knew he would know it when he saw it. He con­tin­ued mov­ing wait­ing for that ground and for Napoleon to make a mis­take. Gen­tle­men, I do not con­sider myself to be Welling­ton; Santa Ana, how­ever, con­sid­ers him­self to be Napoleon — the Napoleon of the West. I will con­tinue to retreat gen­tle­men, until I find the ground in my vision and, when Santa Ana makes his mis­take, I will attack.

The Alamo 2004

Yes­ter­day I was behind in my day because of an evening learn­ing and play­ing Lords of Water­deep (a sim­ple and enjoy­able board game btw) so I got home late, crashed on the couch, woke up late and spent the entire day catch­ing up

While in the mid­dle of try­ing to get things mov­ing I saw a tweet that caught my eye:

Inter­est­ing. I remem­ber when Reince first announced he would not be allow­ing CNN & MSNBC to do the debates over the Clin­ton movie I was a lit­tle sur­prised to see Mika Brizen­ski say he had a point.

That didn’t raise alarm bells, over the years I’ve noticed a dif­fer­ence between when Mika is shilling and when Mika is think­ing and I didn’t see the Shilling lan­guage in place but when I saw this became the opin­ion of David Brock’s Media Mat­ters Crowd

In his own let­ters to Zucker and Green­blatt, Brock said, “Given that this project could coin­cide with a poten­tial Clin­ton cam­paign, the tim­ing raises too many ques­tions about fair­ness and con­flicts of inter­est ahead of the 2016 election.”

He asks Green­blatt, “Will you allow NBC News’ name to be tar­nished by NBC Entertainment’s pur­suit of rat­ings?” adding, “NBC has a rep­u­ta­tion for objec­tiv­ity and fair­ness. Yet NBC Enter­tain­ment acknowl­edged that it will be eval­u­at­ing the con­tent not by jour­nal­is­tic stan­dards, but rather purely by enter­tain­ment value. A fic­tion­al­ized car­i­ca­ture of Clin­ton may make for more dra­matic appeal, but diver­sions from real­ity are likely to blow back on NBC News.”

and Mau­reen Dowd:

Films can dra­mat­i­cally alter the way famous peo­ple are viewed, mak­ing them cooler, more glam­orous, more sym­pa­thetic — and the reverse. Clever film­mak­ers can offer up deli­cious souf­flés of pro­pa­ganda and sto­ry­telling, putting a new imprint on the his­tor­i­cal record.

THAT, got my alarm bells run­ning loudly.

First of all there is the Sarah Palin film Game Change.

The HBO films pro­duc­tion was designed, timed and sched­uled to hurt Palin when every­one and I mean EVERY­ONE thought she was run­ning. When it came out it received mas­sive atten­tion from the MSM than things Palin actu­ally was say­ing at the time

So the pres­i­dent attacks Sarah Palin and Palin answers, offer­ing to debate the pres­i­dent on these issues any time any place and how does MSM react? How does Morn­ing Joe answer?

Silence.

Why would that be? Haven’t we heard for a week how Sarah Palin was over her head, an object of pity?

Nope not a word. Even today Richard Cohen attacks not the real Sarah Palin but the Sarah Palin of the movie

The pro­duc­tion raised a lot of eye­brows from con­ser­v­a­tives but didn’t pro­duce the same soul-​searching that the Hillary film is sud­denly cre­at­ing among liberals.

Now my first thought here in the mid­dle of Wein­er­ma­nia is the Dowds and Brocks are con­cerned about remind­ing the vot­ers of Bill back in the White House and Hillary’s deci­sion to stick with him but vot­ers didn’t remem­ber Barack Obama’s record when it was star­ing them right in the paycheck.

My sec­ond thought was per­haps they were afraid of han­dling her tenure of Sec­re­tary of State, the last thing the left needs is a reminder dur­ing an elec­tion year of who was actu­ally the lead for­eign pol­icy per­son dur­ing the cur­rent deba­cles:

for a cou­ple of weeks the left and MSNBC while tout­ing Hillary Clin­ton as the inevitable Demo­c­rat nom­i­nee are not only doing their best to ignore her time as Sec­re­tary of State but they, when chal­lenged are unable to name a sin­gle accom­plish­ment she achieved in that office.

The lack of any such suc­cess would nor­mally, under the Peter Prin­ci­ple dis­qual­ify her from any kind of office beyond Sec­re­tary of State, but that doesn’t seem to be the case.

John Nolte comes clos­est to fig­ur­ing out what is going on

if past is pro­logue, CNN and NBC host­ing GOP pri­mary debates is a much more effec­tive way to put Clin­ton in the White House than a Hillary minis­eries and documentary.

The left under­stand that CNN and NBC are at their most effec­tive at win­ning elec­tions for Democ­rats when they hide behind a phony shield of objec­tiv­ity. For good rea­son, the left is con­cerned these Hillary projects might weaken that shield.

Very VERY close but not quite right. Their worry is not that it hurts the “shield of objec­tiv­ity”, it’s that this move gives Renice an excuse to do some­thing that con­ser­v­a­tives have wanted done for a very long time.

One of the prob­lems with the lib­eral net­works mod­er­at­ing debates is who the peo­ple in the net­works actu­ally are. This Week for exam­ple is hosted by a for­mer Clin­ton Hack George Stephanopou­los and yet every­one is amazed that in the ABC debate dur­ing the GOP pri­mary the ques­tion of con­tra­cep­tion which was on nobody’s screen at the time is asked just before the San­dra Fluke.

The prob­lem becomes if you pull out of these debates or keep these peo­ple from mod­er­at­ing them then the MSM sto­ry­line becomes: “GOP can­di­dates duck real jour­nal­ists.” and that would be the meme on every sin­gle net­work and their excuse to duck out of coverage.

How­ever the Hillary Movies solve this prob­lem admirably. It pro­vides an excuse, a jus­ti­fi­ca­tion, well of COURSE we can’t have our debates with the peo­ple from CNN or NBC. as Renice put it:

The ques­tion is, if the party is going to spend time and money and resources in orga­niz­ing an intel­li­gent and rea­son­able debate cal­en­dar, should we have net­works and mod­er­a­tors that are pro­mot­ing Hillary Clin­ton depose our can­di­dates and I say: No Way!

It’s a good argu­ment to make against CNN & NBC but the truth is that descrip­tion fits ABC, CBS & PBS too regard­less of the lack of Movies or doc­u­men­tary on the subject.

As long as the MSM is able to frame the ques­tions they are able to frame the debate, if they are cut out of debate ques­tion­ing then they are left to report what the can­di­dates actu­ally say in post-​debate cov­er­age and while the media are experts at tak­ing GOP can­di­dates out of con­text it’s a lot harder to do it when peo­ple have just seen them IN con­text a few moments before.

While Pre­bius’ deci­sion only elim­i­nates 25 of this prob­lem for the GOP it has poten­tial to expand beyond that. Dowd & Brock under­stand that a few more days of press on the sub­ject could lead to a state­ment sound­ing some­thing like:

You know this the best way to solve this prob­lem long-​term is to just have our debates inde­pen­dent of the MSM. We can use local media or new media to mod­er­ate or oper­ate Lin­coln Dou­glas style and just pro­vide the net­works with the feed to broad­cast if they wish and make live streams avail­able on the net & via smart phones.

For the Dowds & Brocks That would be the worst of all pos­si­ble worlds. Not only would such a deci­sion be hugely pop­u­lar with the GOP base that the MSM wants to pry from the party, not only would it estab­lish a nar­ra­tive that would not directly aid Democ­rats in gen­eral and lib­er­al­ism in par­tic­u­lar but it ele­vates the new media that the MSM has been hem­or­rhag­ing their viewer & reader base to for years.

Can you imag­ine the net­works hav­ing to play clips of a debate fea­tur­ing all those blog­gers & radio talk hosts that they con­tinue to ignore and belit­tle? And what hap­pens when view­ers find these peo­ple can ask ques­tions just as rel­e­vant as “pro­fes­sional” jour­nal­ists, if not better?

That’s the dis­as­ter Brock, Dowd and the rest see before them and want to stop at all costs. The only ques­tion is will the GOP lead­er­ship be smart enough to see oppor­tu­nity when it is knock­ing right in front of them?

Update: News­busters remem­bers with two quotes one from a debate:

STEPHANOPOU­LOS: But I do want to get that core ques­tion. Gov­er­nor Rom­ney, do you believe that states have the right to ban con­tra­cep­tion? Or is that trumped by a con­sti­tu­tional right to privacy?

MITT ROM­NEY: George, this is an unusual topic that you’re rais­ing. States have a right to ban con­tra­cep­tion? I can’t imag­ine a state ban­ning con­tra­cep­tion. I can’t imag­ine the cir­cum­stances where a state would want to do so, and if I were gov­er­nor of a state–

and one from Hannity

HAN­NITY: You think he was doing this under direct orders?

MOR­RIS: Under orders. And I think, and now he comes out with this thing on con­tra­cep­tion. They want to cre­ate the idea, and it’s no coin­ci­dence, that he came out with it after Min­nesota and Col­orado which was Santorum’s vic­to­ries. They want to cre­ate the impres­sion that the Repub­li­cans will ban con­tra­cep­tion, which is totally insane, but they’re float­ing it out and they’re bring­ing it out there. And this move on Obama’s part was part of inject­ing that issue.

and Rand Paul from this week:

PAUL: I’m say­ing that there, it makes you won­der, and he’s also said pub­licly that he has fre­quent cor­re­spon­dence with his friends who are still involved with the White House. So the ques­tion is, are you going to get a fair shake, and I think it’s a rea­son­able ques­tion for Repub­li­cans to ask, should we be sched­ul­ing debates and allow­ing peo­ple who used to and still do have active con­tact with the active Demo­c­rat Party, should we be sub­ject­ing our­selves to that, or should we try to have more neu­tral or objec­tive type of moderators?

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[olimome­ter id=3]

Yes­ter­day was pretty quiet for DaTip­Jar, the meter moved only $2 yes­ter­day leav­ing me a full $231 shy with only three days to make it up.

Only you can decide if that changes. If you think this site is worth your time and invest­ment hit DaTip­Jar Below.

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The Master:  Oh!  Now I can say I was provoked.

Doctor Who: Utopia 2007

Sam Houston: In 1815, Napoleon escaped from Elba. He moved swiftly to consolidate before the Grand Alliance could move against him. Wellington, with fewer men, retreated ahead of Napoleon, forcing Napoleon to chase him through Belgium. Wellington had a vision of a battlefield, he did not know where it was, but he knew he would know it when he saw it. He continued moving waiting for that ground and for Napoleon to make a mistake. Gentlemen, I do not consider myself to be Wellington; Santa Ana, however, considers himself to be Napoleon – the Napoleon of the West. I will continue to retreat gentlemen, until I find the ground in my vision and, when Santa Ana makes his mistake, I will attack.

The Alamo 2004

Yesterday I was behind in my day because of an evening learning and playing Lords of Waterdeep (a simple and enjoyable board game btw) so I got home late, crashed on the couch, woke up late and spent the entire day catching up

While in the middle of trying to get things moving I saw a tweet that caught my eye:

Interesting. I remember when Reince first announced he would not be allowing CNN & MSNBC to do the debates over the Clinton movie I was a little surprised to see Mika Brizenski say he had a point.

 

That didn’t raise alarm bells, over the years I’ve noticed a difference between when Mika is shilling and when Mika is thinking and I didn’t see the Shilling language in place but when I saw this became the opinion of David Brock’s Media Matters Crowd

In his own letters to Zucker and Greenblatt, Brock said, “Given that this project could coincide with a potential Clinton campaign, the timing raises too many questions about fairness and conflicts of interest ahead of the 2016 election.”

He asks Greenblatt, “Will you allow NBC News’ name to be tarnished by NBC Entertainment’s pursuit of ratings?” adding, “NBC has a reputation for objectivity and fairness. Yet NBC Entertainment acknowledged that it will be evaluating the content not by journalistic standards, but rather purely by entertainment value. A fictionalized caricature of Clinton may make for more dramatic appeal, but diversions from reality are likely to blow back on NBC News.”

and Maureen Dowd:

Films can dramatically alter the way famous people are viewed, making them cooler, more glamorous, more sympathetic — and the reverse. Clever filmmakers can offer up delicious soufflés of propaganda and storytelling, putting a new imprint on the historical record.

THAT, got my alarm bells running loudly.

First of all there is the Sarah Palin film Game Change.

The HBO films production was designed, timed and scheduled to hurt Palin when everyone and I mean EVERYONE thought she was running. When it came out it received massive attention from the MSM than things Palin actually was saying at the time

So the president attacks Sarah Palin and Palin answers, offering to debate the president on these issues any time any place and how does MSM react? How does Morning Joe answer?

Silence.

Why would that be? Haven’t we heard for a week how Sarah Palin was over her head, an object of pity?

Nope not a word. Even today Richard Cohen attacks not the real Sarah Palin but the Sarah Palin of the movie

The production raised a lot of eyebrows from conservatives but didn’t produce the same soul-searching that the Hillary film is suddenly creating among liberals.

 

Now my first thought here in the middle of Weinermania is the Dowds and Brocks are concerned about reminding the voters of Bill back in the White House and Hillary’s decision to stick with him but voters didn’t remember Barack Obama’s record when it was staring them right in the paycheck.

My second thought was perhaps they were afraid of handling her tenure of Secretary of State, the last thing the left needs is a reminder during an election year of who was actually the lead foreign policy person during the current debacles:

for a couple of weeks the left and MSNBC while touting Hillary Clinton as the inevitable Democrat nominee are not only doing their best to ignore her time as Secretary of State but they, when challenged are unable to name a single accomplishment she achieved in that office.

The lack of any such success would normally, under the Peter Principle disqualify her from any kind of office beyond Secretary of State, but that doesn’t seem to be the case.

John Nolte comes closest to figuring out what is going on

if past is prologue, CNN and NBC hosting GOP primary debates is a much more effective way to put Clinton in the White House than a Hillary miniseries and documentary.

The left understand that CNN and NBC are at their most effective at winning elections for Democrats when they hide behind a phony shield of objectivity. For good reason, the left is concerned these Hillary projects might weaken that shield.

Very VERY close but not quite right. Their worry is not that it hurts the “shield of objectivity”, it’s that this move gives Renice an excuse to do something that conservatives have wanted done for a very long time.

One of the problems with the liberal networks moderating debates is who the people in the networks actually are. This Week for example is hosted by a former Clinton Hack George Stephanopoulos and yet everyone is amazed that in the ABC debate during the GOP primary the question of contraception which was on nobody’s screen at the time is asked just before the Sandra Fluke.

The problem becomes if you pull out of these debates or keep these people from moderating them then the MSM storyline becomes: “GOP candidates duck real journalists.” and that would be the meme on every single network and their excuse to duck out of coverage.

However the Hillary Movies solve this problem admirably. It provides an excuse, a justification, well of COURSE we can’t have our debates with the people from CNN or NBC. as Renice put it:

The question is, if the party is going to spend time and money and resources in organizing an intelligent and reasonable debate calendar, should we have networks and moderators that are promoting Hillary Clinton depose our candidates and I say: No Way!

It’s a good argument to make against CNN & NBC but the truth is that description fits ABC, CBS & PBS too regardless of the lack of Movies or documentary on the subject.

As long as the MSM is able to frame the questions they are able to frame the debate, if they are cut out of debate questioning then they are left to report what the candidates actually say in post-debate coverage and while the media are experts at taking GOP candidates out of context it’s a lot harder to do it when people have just seen them IN context a few moments before.

While Prebius’ decision only eliminates 2/5 of this problem for the GOP it has potential to expand beyond that. Dowd & Brock understand that a few more days of press on the subject could lead to a statement sounding something like:

You know this the best way to solve this problem long-term is to just have our debates independent of the MSM. We can use local media or new media to moderate or operate Lincoln Douglas style and just provide the networks with the feed to broadcast if they wish and make live streams available on the net & via smart phones.

For the Dowds & Brocks That would be the worst of all possible worlds. Not only would such a decision be hugely popular with the GOP base that the MSM wants to pry from the party, not only would it establish a narrative that would not directly aid Democrats in general and liberalism in particular but it elevates the new media that the MSM has been hemorrhaging their viewer & reader base to for years.

Can you imagine the networks having to play clips of a debate featuring all those bloggers & radio talk hosts that they continue to ignore and belittle? And what happens when viewers find these people can ask questions just as relevant as “professional” journalists, if not better?

That’s the disaster Brock, Dowd and the rest see before them and want to stop at all costs. The only question is will the GOP leadership be smart enough to see opportunity when it is knocking right in front of them?

Update: Newsbusters remembers with two quotes one from a debate:

STEPHANOPOULOS: But I do want to get that core question. Governor Romney, do you believe that states have the right to ban contraception? Or is that trumped by a constitutional right to privacy?

MITT ROMNEY: George, this is an unusual topic that you’re raising. States have a right to ban contraception? I can’t imagine a state banning contraception. I can’t imagine the circumstances where a state would want to do so, and if I were governor of a state-

and one from Hannity

HANNITY: You think he was doing this under direct orders?

MORRIS: Under orders. And I think, and now he comes out with this thing on contraception. They want to create the idea, and it’s no coincidence, that he came out with it after Minnesota and Colorado which was Santorum’s victories. They want to create the impression that the Republicans will ban contraception, which is totally insane, but they’re floating it out and they’re bringing it out there. And this move on Obama’s part was part of injecting that issue.

and Rand Paul from this week:

PAUL: I’m saying that there, it makes you wonder, and he’s also said publicly that he has frequent correspondence with his friends who are still involved with the White House. So the question is, are you going to get a fair shake, and I think it’s a reasonable question for Republicans to ask, should we be scheduling debates and allowing people who used to and still do have active contact with the active Democrat Party, should we be subjecting ourselves to that, or should we try to have more neutral or objective type of moderators?

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Only you can decide if that changes. If you think this site is worth your time and investment hit DaTipJar Below.

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