Accuracy in Media

On the same day that Democratic Senators were writing a letter seeking a federal probe of Sinclair Broadcasting’s plan to air a 90-minute anti-Kerry film two weeks before election day, a CBS sister network, the Sundance Channel, was airing five hours?315 minutes?of the “Vote for Change” anti-Bush rock concert in Washington, D.C. I didn’t hear a peep of protest about that.

The next day, the Washington Post showed its priorities by running a story about Sinclair’s decision on page one and a story about Sundance airing the anti-Bush concert back in the third section. The Sinclair decision was considered an earth-shattering event, throwing into doubt the fairness and balance of the media! Five hours on Sundance, by contrast, were just “entertainment.” The Post story noted in passing that, “People who were shut out could watch the show live on the Sundance Channel or hear the broadcast on more than 60 radio stations.” So here we had TV and radio in the Kerry camp but no words of concern from the Post or any other liberal news outlet.  

The lesson: it’s perfectly acceptable to broadcast an anti-Bush concert but it’s illegitimate to air a documentary showing how Vietnam veterans and former POWs are disgusted by John Kerry branding them as war criminals. 

Sundance, a sister network to CBS and owned by Viacom, also aired “National Anthem,” a film about the “Vote for Change” concert tour, as part of the five hours devoted to the concert.

Sundance is also airing “Uncovered: The Whole Truth About the Iraq War,” an anti-Bush film by Robert Greenwald. It features Joe Wilson, the discredited ambassador and Kerry adviser who emerged as a critic of the Bush administration on its Iraq policy. 

But that’s not all. Sundance has been airing anti-Bush activist Al Franken’s radio show. Sundance describes one show this way: “In Florida on the last stop on their swing state tour, Al and Katherine talk to the original Deaniac Joe Trippi. Also, Florida Congressman Robert Wexler, New Democrat Joe Garcia and Jan Schneider who is taking on Katherine Harris in this year’s congressional contest.”

So here we have a blatant case of Sundance showing Franken’s radio show for the specific purpose of helping the Democratic Party win on November 2. But there’s no outrage from the Washington Post or other media over that. 

On top of this, on October 23 and 26, Sundance will air Michael Moore’s film, Bowling for Columbine, a deeply flawed attack on the right to keep and bear arms.

On CNN, correspondent Wolf Blitzer noted that the concert tour was “designed to boost Democratic hopes in next month’s election” and that “Vote for Change” concerts had been held in several states already. But he had no problem with that. In fact, like a groupie behind stage, he interviewed Dave Matthews of the Dave Matthews Band, who declared that the country “frightens me” under Bush and that the President is “two-faced” on the environment and “very much favors the top income brackets?”

Blitzer’s “tough” follow-up question: “So it’s not just the war in Iraq?”

No, Matthews said, “?there are so many other things that have piled onto the?piled onto that?on top of that, make me think that it’s a very important time to stand up and say what you think?” It’s no wonder Laura Ingraham wrote a book about left-wing celebrities entitled, “Shut Up & Sing”

Incredibly, later on CNN, anchor Miles O’Brien returned to the subject?not of the anti-Bush rock concert but Sinclair Broadcasting. “With little more than three weeks to election day,” he said, “the media, its fairness?or perceived lack of it?is once again stirring debate?”

If O’Brien wants an example of true one-sidedness, he should watch Real Time with Bill Maher on the HBO channel that joins CNN as part of the Time Warner empire.  Every Friday night, Maher specializes in jokes about Bush, mocking him to the point of making the President into a target of hatred. And while Maher occasionally features conservative guests, his heart is with those on the left, such as Michael Moore.

The one-sided and orchestrated attack on Sinclair, now joined by liberal Democratic Senators and the Democratic National Committee, demonstrates the reality of a fanatical liberal mentality that simply does not and will not tolerate opposing views. 

It’s to be expected that the Democratic Party would ignore the significance of Sundance or HBO making contributions to the Kerry campaign. But for the major media to ignore all of this and focus on Sinclair is just one more indication that they have openly taken sides in the campaign as well.

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