An etherealgirl's Adventures in Cyberland

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

time's ann coulter mythology

As reported by Media Matters for America, Time Magazine publishes a shameless puff piece on right wing pundit and deceitful provocateur Ann Coulter! Time Magazine! The final nail in the coffin of real journalism? Yeah, I know that like every major news outlet in the land, they are controlled by corporate shills but come ON!

Though Cloud noted that Coulter's defense of her Earnhardt mistake was, itself, also untrue, he didn't take issue with her contention that "liberals" have identified only one mistake in her writing. This is an obvious falsehood; liberals and others have identified many, many errors of fact in Coulter's writing, as a search of Media Matters for America,, or countless other resources would reveal.

But Cloud deems Coulter mostly accurate: "Coulter has a reputation for carelessness with facts, and if you Google the words 'Ann Coulter lies,' you will drown in results. But I didn't find many outright Coulter errors."

One would have hoped that the author of a 5,800-word Time magazine cover story would go beyond performing a simple Google search; Nexis would be a good start. But even Cloud's simple Google search should have been enough to dispel the notion that it's difficult to find "outright Coulter errors." The fourth "hit" that Cloud's Google search yields is a review of Coulter's Slander on the nonpartisan website, which revealed Coulter to have erred about:

* The number of articles the New York Times printed about "Selma" over a six-year period;

* The frequency of the Times' use of the phrase "moderate Republican" vs. that of "liberal Republican"; and

* Former Vice President Al Gore's claim to have been the inspiration for the book Love Story.

Likewise, a quick look at just the first three of 11 pages of search results for "Coulter" at Media Matters finds examples of Coulter lying or being wrong about:

* The New York Times "outing" gays (the people mentioned in the article in question were already "out") and ignoring former atheist William Murray's conversion to Christianity (the paper didn't ignore it; it covered it.)

* Gary Hart, Bill Clinton, and John Kerry supposedly running for president "under invented names" (they didn't);

* The Bush administration's refusal to reimburse the District of Columbia for costs incurred during Bush's inauguration;

* Long-discredited allegations that President Clinton "sold burial plots in Arlington National Cemetery."

In short: Coulter is wrong very, very often, and Cloud's suggestion to the contrary is simply bizarre.

This is hardly an isolated example of the disgrace our so-called news has become, and maybe this story isn't this worse example of the drivel that gets passed along as legitimate journalism; furthermore, this complete and total breakdown of reality in reporting probably has been a rather long time in the making. But If this story isn't the whimpering death knell for the American ideal of a Free Press, it is getting awfully close to critical condition.

Free Press indeed: free to print all the news it has been spoon-fed by the Powers that Be. But wait... Isn't that called... propaganda???? When a legitimate news source throws softballs at a well-known pundit and shrugs off facts in exchange for lazy and hands off apologist non-reporting, where can a nation go to get some actual honest to goodness news?

The fact that this question actually has legitimacy in our great nation is the most shocking and sorrowful thing of all... how on earth have we allowed it to come to this???

Posted by etherealfire :: 3:32 AM :: 0 Comments:

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