Monday, October 31, 2005

White House Tricks, NPR Treats

On Thursday, Harriet Miers announced her withdrawal as Supreme Court nominee, effectively siphoning off some of the build-up to Indictment Day.

On Friday, a major figure within the White House was indicted, and the odds are that the Scooter Libby is just the first among several Bushies who will be swept away by the ongoing Fitzgerald investigation. The biggest names actively in play are Karl Rove and Dick Cheney. Gee, you think the White House might want to divert the press from continuing to report on the scandal?

After a weekend's repose, we all woke up to the White House announcing its new Supreme Court pick. Monday morning - the first real news cycle after the indictments came down. The administration's intent would be obvious to a third grader, or a program planner at Faux News looking for something, anything to air that didn't dwell on the catastrophes of the Bush regime.

How did savvy, independent NPR handle this ploy? Did they, in their necessary coverage of the nomination, point out the diversionary nature of the announcement? No, in the immediate hour after the announcement, Morning Edition went wall-to-wall with Alito. Perhaps one of their analysts mentioned something about the timing, but if they did slip that in, that must have been while I was in the shower. Other than their weekly Cokie Roberts interview, Morning Edition didn't even mention the White House scandal, as far as I heard or can see on their website. Their hourly news headlines have led with Alito, and had absolutely nothing about Treasongate in the cycles I've heard.

Top aide indicted? Look, over there, it's the Supreme Pumpkin, NPR. Trick or Treat!


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