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Maintaining Optimism in the Face of Reality. Occasional observations on the state of the world, society, business and politics. Usually anchored by facts, always augmented by opinion.


Unhelpful Debate About the Debate  | e-mail post

One of my ongoing complaints about news coverage here in the U.S. (as I can't speak for the broader nature of news coverage in other countries) is the tendency to crave anything that smells of a scandal. Often, the less newsworthy, the better, it seems. (Think about the extensive coverage one sees of high-profile kidnappings, murders, etc, until the next big topic comes along to push it aside.)

Today, blogosphere is abuzz with the non-story of whether or not John Kerry may have "cheated" in the debate last week. I'm not going to post links, because the discussion is ubiquitous. Can we please stop. Short of Kerry having an earpiece with a feed from a debate warroom, I really don't think this is a meaningful issue. John Kerry pulling a pen or even a small "cheat sheet," has nowhere near the significance of the CBS document forgery issue, that's for certain.

Not to mention, Kerry's performance in the debate leads me to believe he had any aids whatsoever. If he did better in the debates, it was only on rhetorical grounds, not on substantive ones.

There are so many substantive issues in this campaign, and when things like this get blown completely out of proportion it only serves to make the blogosphere seem petty and lacking in perspective, an appetite for meaningful debate, and an even tempermant.

Now that the Kerry campaign has copped to Kerry pulling out a pen, I hope I don't read much anything to the effect of "well, that's still cheating."

While there will likely always be some inherent tension between the mainstream media and the blogging world, showing some self-imposed editorial restraint would go a long way toward being taken more seriously.

e-mail post | Link Cosmos | [Permalink]  |  | Monday, October 04, 2004
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