Friday, February 04, 2005
conservatives and liberals in the media arena
Last week the Canadian television program "The Fifth Estate" did an in depth show about conservative bias in the American media called "Sticks and Stones". Of course, it was bias in its own right since the show (and indeed the CBC network) is liberal, but it was still an excellent program and raised some very crucial points. My jaw dropped several times throughout the show but there were two main incidents that were shocking and even amusing.

The first was Bill O'Reilly. I had no idea the man was a few bricks shy of a load, but MAN... that dude is crazy!! He yells at people (usually guests, sometimes Al Franken) to "shut up", and if they don't he actually turns their microphones off so they can't speak! (check out these clips to behold the madness) The guy can't seem to handle a proper debate/conversation when the person doesn't agree with him and often just snaps. Yelling at a guy whose dad died in the World Trade Center because he doesn't blame the Iraqis for what happened was pretty bizarre. But most laughably Bill O'Reilly yelled at a Canadian woman that he was interviewing and said that he was going to start a boycott and bring the Canadian economy to it's knees. Hoo boy, Mr. O'Reilly... we are sooooo quaking in our little booties up here.

The next jaw dropping and decidedly more amusing incident was when the reporter, Bob McKeown, interviewed the wingnut, Ann Coulter. The point she was arguing against Canada (which she does often) about was that it was inconceivable that Canada would support the USA in other wars (like Vietnam) by sending troops, but not send troops to Iraq. The interview went like this:

Coulter: "Canada used to be one of our most loyal friends and vice-versa. I mean Canada sent troops to Vietnam - was Vietnam less containable and more of a threat than Saddam Hussein?"

McKeown interrupts: "Canada didn't send troops to Vietnam."

Coulter: "I don't think that's right."

McKeown: "Canada did not send troops to Vietnam."

Coulter "Indochina?"

McKeown: "Uh no. Canada ...second World War of course. Korea. Yes. Vietnam No."

Coulter: "I think you're wrong."

McKeown: "No, took a pass on Vietnam."

Coulter: "I think you're wrong."

McKeown: "No, Australia was there, not Canada."

Coulter: "I think Canada sent troops."

McKeown: "No."

Coulter: "Well. I'll get back to you on that."

McKeown tags out in script:

"Coulter never got back to us -- but for the record, like Iraq, Canada sent no troops to Vietnam."

He Ann, why do you think the American draft dodgers (like Clinton!!!) were coming up here?? We were in the World Wars (in fact we joined the Second World War 3 years before the USA did).... we were in the Korean war..even a few others... but that's it. She could only reply with "I'll have to get back to you on that". Ha! I laughed my ass off. Coz who in their right mind would argue such a thing when (a) the reporter is Canadian and you're not, and (b) likely knows better than you do or at the very least checked his facts, unlike you. Oh well, she's had it out for Canada for along time, so this kind of denial doesn't surprise me.

For the clip showing this hilarious exchange with Ann Coulter click this page and find the link at the end of the first paragraph which reads: "One of the most talked-about exchanges in Sticks and Stones occurred between reporter Bob McKeown and Ann Coulter and concerned Canada's role in the Vietnam War. Take a look for yourself... "

Anyway, I didn't mean for this to turn into such a long post. If you would like to see the report outlining the conservative and liberal battle in the media you can find the whole show here and read viewer comments (positive and negative) here. It's a long show to watch (I think the running time is 1 hr, 20 mins) but it is so very worth it. This one is for you, Crawler!!