Falling for the Far Right’s ACORN Agenda

ACORN is not the problem, FOX News1 is

Wheel of transformation

The Washington Post’s Darryl Fears and Carol D. Leonnig describe “The $1,300 mission to fell ACORN.” It started with a phone call to James O’Keefe III (the “pimp”) from Hannah Giles (the “prostitute”), daughter of a conservative blogger named Doug Giles. The plan from the very beginning was to damage the reputation of the organization. O’Keefe admits that his enmity for ACORN derived from its success helping Democrats win elections, not from any charges of corruption. The Post also points out that in Philadelphia ACORN employees called the police when the duo left the offices there. The videotape of that encounter has yet to be released, and so the prevailing image of ACORN in the mainstream media has been the one that the video makers, with a vendetta against the organization, wanted out there.

Hysterical Fox News commentators have blown this story up like a hot air balloon, and much of the rest of the media appear to believe that what Fox says goes. Andrew Alexander complains that “traditional news outlets like The Post simply don’t pay enough attention to conservative media or viewpoints.” But writing in the Columbia Journalism Review, Rick Perlstein responds: “Why would a newspaper like the The Post be training its investigative focus on ACORN now? Whether you think ill or well of ACORN, they’re a very marginal group in the grand scheme of things and about as tied to the White House as the PTA.”

This right-wing stunt proved such powerful catnip to mainstream media bigfeet that amazingly, George Stephanopoulos thought it worth discussing with the President of the United States during a rare one-on-one interview opportunity. The president quite understandably explained that that he wasn’t following the story very closely, and that the country was dealing with more serious problems right now. (U.S. grants to ACORN, already suspended, account for literally 52 seconds of annual U.S. government spending, according to one careful estimate.) Stephanopoulos had nothing else to say. As though he were correcting himself, he continued, “Afghanistan is a serious problem facing the country right now.” Oh, yeah, Afghanistan….

[Click to continue reading Think Again: Falling for the Far Right’s ACORN Agenda]

Constantly amazed at how pliable the news media is to whatever is the Right Wing smear-de-jour. Sickeningly familiar from constant repetition.

  1. and their masters []

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