Do you remember the second Presidential debate, the one Candy Crowley from CNN moderated? Many republicans still do, many of the ones that count when it comes to her career. Memos were leaked and it became no secret that the debates had clear rules. There were to be no follow up questions, and absolutely no fact checking the person on the spot. Here’s a reminder of that memorable moment and how entertaining it was.
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There’s the cardinal sin. Immediately following the debate Candy apologized on bent knee to the major media outlets that she had stepped beyond the parameters of the rules. It wasn’t enough of course, she had spurned the establishment, spat in their eye. In other words, she did a half decent job of moderating the debate. For weeks to come there would be scorn hurled her way from every corner of Fox News, to Rush Limbaugh to the tea party. And CNN did not exactly have her back either.
Real journalism and asking the wrong questions is deeply frowned upon in Washington. You won’t get access, and besides, it’s expensive to do real journalism, and why would you want to uncover crap the money interests in your news corporation started in the first place? There’s no incentive for it, so you have to play ball in the mainstream media. There are allowances for certain names on certain stations push the boundaries just so – Rachel Maddow comes to mind – but they play their part, placating enough people with that viewpoint into thinking it’s well represented or equally given credibility.
“Speaking to conservatives at a Las Vegas country club on Tuesday, Fahrenkopf said he was proud of his role in choosing the moderators, according to the Web site Ralston Reports. But then he quickly added: “We made one mistake this time: Her name is Candy.”
I’m guessing that means we won’t be seeing her moderate any big political venues for a while, but this speaks to the bigger picture. It’s sending a message, calling someone into line whose already apologized making an attempt to do the right thing. Otherwise the debates will never dig beneath the surface, will near get to issues that are questionable to make any definitive statements on. And those are numerous, those are the issues that matter.
I’m not saying that Candy Crowley is the paramount of journalism, but if you want to play on the big networks where the money is, you have to conform to their game. Take a step out of line, and you’re out, or quickly put back into line. The rules are simple on CSPAN and Fox – we love the banks, we have think tanks to choose which words will mislead you the best, and we kneel before CEO’s businesses who can’t even run solvent businesses, yet are hailed as masterminds in the economy. CNN calls it down the middle and MSNBC placates just enough liberals and progressives to neutralize them.