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Rick Horowitz

Rick Horowitz

Posted: July 22, 2010 01:05 PM

The Shirley Sherrod Story: Breitbart Plays the Media Card

What's Your Reaction:

Have you seen this clip?

Have you heard this sound bite?

Take a look at this thing -- it's unbelievable!

Except, of course, when everyone believes it. Then it's not unbelievable at all -- then it's poisonous. And poisonous is exactly what it's designed to be.

Don't expect an apology. This is war, isn't it? "Destroy the enemy before the enemy destroys you" -- that's what you do in a war.

Whatever it takes.

* * *


Have you seen this clip? Look what you can do with this clip:

If you take this sentence here, and you cut out this other sentence here, look what you can do! You can do amazing things.

If you show only this part, and you bury this whole other part, look how you can make her sound!

You can make her sound like she's saying something that's the exact opposite of what she's actually saying. What a great trick! What a super scam!

This is war, isn't it?

Whatever it takes.

* * *


Have you heard this sound bite? Look what you can do with this sound bite:

You can put it in heavy rotation, play it over and over again until it creates its own reality. You're a "News Channel," right? So if you're playing it over and over again, it must be news, right? It must be real.

Instead of, say, a perfect distortion of real.

Do you know that? Do you already know that it's a perfect distortion when you jump on the sound bite, when you decide to play it over and over again?

You probably do. You almost certainly do. You know your source, and his track record. His tricks, and his tactics.

You know exactly what he's up to. You're a "news channel," right? So you know the difference between the truth and a lie, don't you?

But this isn't about news judgment -- this is about something bigger.

Better not to look too closely. Better just to shrug, and wink, and get it on the air.

This is war, isn't it?

* * *


Have you seen this clip? Everyone's playing this clip, so you'd better play it, too. Everyone's in an uproar about this clip, so you'd better be in an uproar, too. What choice do you have? You need to be fast.

Accurate can come later.

What choice do you have? If you don't run the clip right away, they'll say you're sitting on the clip. Trying to hide the clip.

The "news channel" will say you're distorting the news.

This isn't about news judgment -- this is about something bigger.

Better not to look too closely. Better just to shrug, and twitch when they say "twitch."

This is war.

* * *


Have you seen this clip?

Have you heard this sound bite?

It's a total fabrication. It's a hit job dressed up as a news report.

And everyone bought in. Happily or grudgingly, everyone ran with the story. With the fabrication, instead of the fact.

Everyone behaved exactly the way he knew they'd behave when he first put it out there. He had it all figured out -- again. He had us all figured out -- again.

Don't expect an apology. This is war, isn't it?

Whatever it takes.

Rick Horowitz is a syndicated columnist. You can write to him at rickhoro@execpc.com.

 

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