Conspiracy Against Ron Paul

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Submitted by rankandfile on December 17, 2007 - 9:31am

Ron Paul has broken the single day fund raising record, pulling in $6.1 million on 12/16/2007. Wouldn't you think that this would be something the major news outlets would want to cover? NO. Here are some of their top headlines as of the time of this post:

CNN.com:
"Report: Saudi king pardons rape victim"
"Lieberman endorses John McCain"
"Ticker: Huckabee: I'm not apologizing to Bush"
"French president visits Disney with ex-model"

FOX News.com:
"Obama fights Muslim rumors sweeping the internet"
"Saudi rape victim pardoned"
"Googling oneself is more popular, study says"
"Festivus Pole proposed after Wis. city displays Nativity"

All we need now is an update on Paris Hilton's dog and Lindsay Lohan's latest drunken escapade.

YouTube Ron Paul
Google Ron Paul

Submitted by XBoxBoy on December 17, 2007 - 10:10am.

While I don't like conspiracy theories, it is kinda curious as to why the mainstream media is covering Ron Paul so little.

You would think that with all these people giving money, the media would figure that's eyeballs they can attract by running some stories about him. (People tend to like to read stories that reaffirm their beliefs) And attracting eyeballs is what seems be driving the running of a newsroom these days. But it sure doesn't seem to be happening.

So short of the conspiracy theories, or claims that the mainstream news is bought off by political parties, does anyone have a good explanation of why the news is so regularly ignoring Ron Paul? Am I wrong that articles about Ron Paul would attract viewers?

XBoxBoy

Submitted by Jason on December 17, 2007 - 10:34am.

The reason so-called minor candidates don't get coverage is a direct result of corporate media consolidation initiated by the Clinton administration. It only makes sense to give the bare minimum news coverage to the primary campaigns so they only cover the top two or three candidates that are polling the highest. Since their only concern is advertising revenue, they assume the majority of people won't keep their eyes glued on the news long enough to digest coverage on ALL the candidates, therefore we don't get the news we might otherwise need. If you're only polling at 5%, that translates to too small a segment of the viewing audience, right?

Submitted by XBoxBoy on December 17, 2007 - 10:48am.

Jason,
While I can follow your argument as to why the major news doesn't cover all the candidates, I think it overlooks two important points. The first is that regardless of whether you think Ron Paul is good or bad, right or wrong, he is a very intriguing underdog story, and people love underdog stories. (Just look to Hollywood's choice of film scripts for confirmation of that) And the second is that while polls don't show Ron Paul in the top three, the amount of money (read potential advertising dollars) puts him way ahead. And if you measure the number of people actually giving money, he's definitely the front runner.

All of this brings me back to the basic question I have, which is that if Ron Paul is an interesting story, one that will generate eyeballs to your website, and eyeballs equals ad revenue, then why aren't they covering him.

So, am I wrong? Is Ron Paul a boring story which won't bring eyeballs to your website, or people to your news broadcast? (Recent web activity on Ron Paul tends to make me think I'm right) Or am I wrong in thinking that news is driven by viewer ratings? And if I'm NOT wrong about those two things, then why don't the major news outlets cover him more? It would just seem to be in their best interest.

Like I said, I have trouble with jumping on the conspiracy theory bandwagon, but I'm finding it really tough to find a compelling explanation of why the mainstream media is ignoring a story that has repeatedly shown it garners public interest.

XBoxBoy

Submitted by FormerSanDiegan on December 17, 2007 - 11:11am.

It's a conspiracy... Yeah, only little known, alternative news outlets like CNN.com covered this :

http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/12/17/p...

Give me a break.

Submitted by Jason on December 17, 2007 - 11:25am.

XBoxBoy, your points are well taken.

I think you might be referring to this story in the LA Times: http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/washingt...

The fact of the matter is that Ron Paul has not gotten the media focus he deserves, but maybe that will start to change now. I still think there is some wariness on the part of the media to focus on him because he is the only anti-war Republican. I still believe the media has an aversion to "rocking the boat" when it comes to what it perceives as public opinion. It's possible the bulk of news media is still afraid to show anti-war opinions for fear of alienating viewers, however incorrect an assumption that may be.

Bear in mind also, that Ron Paul is much closer in ideology to the archetypical Republican of 20 or 30 years ago. He is the only one in the running with those positions! The mainstream of the Republican party has moved in recent years into more religious and war-making political positions. I believe many conservative voters are really pulling for Ron Paul and that's why his contributions are starting to spike. I see "Google Ron Paul" signs everywhere now. His run is turning into a netroots campaign.

Also note that you see a similar candidate media "blindness" when it comes to the Democrats. Everyone focuses on Clinton/Obama while even relatively high polling candidates like Edwards get virtually no TV news coverage.

Submitted by Arraya on December 17, 2007 - 11:29am.

All media in the US is controlled by like 5-6 people(from memory). It does not have to be a conspiracy that those 5-6 people can loosely control what is or is not highlighted by their corporations depending on their political ties. And I think it is safe to assume that if you are one of the controlling media mogels you have political ties. Maybe RP has not put a for sale sign on his back like the rest of the candidates hence no coverage. Kind of a systemic conspiracy....

Submitted by rankandfile on December 17, 2007 - 11:32am.

FSD you missed the point. Sure, both CNN and Fox mentioned Ron Paul's fund raising record, but they were buried. Instead we got classic headlines like:

"Pinups of bikini-clad women aid jailbreak"

I have since checked CNN and they FINALLY have it as one of their headlines.

http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/

There is no validity with the argument that he is a minority candidate because he is low in the polls, and therefore he shouldn't be covered as much. I seriously question the methodology of the polls and the people that they are surveying.

Submitted by Jason on December 17, 2007 - 11:34am.

I think what arraya is saying is valid. Media is not localized anymore. You don't get news coverage decisions based on your local community's interests because it's too costly. Shareholders get much more of a say now. Ron Paul might be huge in your city/county/state, but you might never know it if you relied on traditional media news.

Submitted by meadandale on December 17, 2007 - 11:34am.

"The first is that regardless of whether you think Ron Paul is good or bad, right or wrong, he is a very intriguing underdog story, and people love underdog stories. (Just look to Hollywood's choice of film scripts for confirmation of that)"

I certainly remember Ross Perot getting more press than Ron Paul has.

Submitted by Jason on December 17, 2007 - 11:40am.

No doubt news in this country has been reduced to infotainment and you will see more titillating stories in place of important journalistic reporting. But regardless of how you feel about polls, we have to pay attention to what the controlling parties of the news media are filtering to their viewers. It is their decisions that affect what we see. If they don't want to show you Ron Paul, they won't! If they back up that decision to you with a poll result, then you're stuck!

Be happy Ron Paul is getting the support he needs right now as a netroots candidate and forget about what the news media is doing. He's not the first candidate in history that proved the netroots approach works.

Submitted by XBoxBoy on December 17, 2007 - 12:00pm.

"Pinups of bikini-clad women aid jailbreak"

Does someone have a link to this article or maybe some youtube footage? The heck with Ron Paul, I wanna see pictures and video of this.

XBoxBoy

Submitted by masayako on December 17, 2007 - 12:06pm.

I try to post my supportive comment to Ron Paul in CNN.com
and here is what I get:

"Your comment is awaiting moderation. Due to the volume of comments we receive, not all comments will be posted. "

Submitted by XBoxBoy on December 17, 2007 - 12:17pm.

Arraya,

Do you think that all media is really controlled by only 5-6 people? While I wouldn't be too surprised to find that a lot of major media is owned by only a handful of people, and I could be convinced that these handful of people do have an influence, I find it hard to believe that journalistic integity has fallen to such a level that if the news editors of most major news outlets were told to play down Ron Paul, they wouldn't balk and walk out. 'Course there's always the possibility that I'm foolishly naive.

XBoxBoy

Submitted by nostradamus on December 17, 2007 - 12:20pm.

For important, hard-hitting news stories I only read the onion:

http://www.theonion.com/content/node/29601

http://www.theonion.com/content/news/u_s...

Submitted by Jason on December 17, 2007 - 12:35pm.

XBoxBoy,

Hate to say it, but journalistic integrity is very much an endangered species in this country. Once Clinton deregulated the media, it began the consolidation of the number of entities you could get your news from. And once your local news entity got snapped up by a large corporate conglomerate, cost-cutting and economies of scale started to come into play.

The reality is that news bureaus are EXPENSIVE to run properly. From a large corporate entity's perspective, it makes sense to consolidate them nationally and underfund them. If you want to make money in media, emphasize the things that draw people's attention like sex, celebrities, crime and disasters. Real news simply doesn't make sense when your main driver is profit and keeping the stockholders happy.

Not to mention we lost the independence of our Public Broadcasting Service (PBS). The Republican majority in Congress let it go underfunded which forced it to seek revenue from corporate sponsors. So now it's not much different from a major commercial network.

The so-called Fourth Estate of the media is no more in this country. Only a mandated and independent public news service coupled with re-regulation of the general media market can bring things back to the way they were.

At least we have the internet, right?

Submitted by anxvariety on December 17, 2007 - 12:33pm.

I find it hard to believe that journalistic integity has fallen to such a level that if the news editors of most major news outlets were told to play down Ron Paul

Would you risk your job to speak up? The people that make decisions at media company have put their time and and proven that they follow instructions well and know when to shut up... after that do you think they'd throw their career away to question their editors on something that's not life or death..

Submitted by condogrrl on December 17, 2007 - 5:20pm.

Maybe Ron Paul should wear a bikini.

Submitted by NotCranky on December 17, 2007 - 5:27pm.

Wow, condogirl you really know how to make a guy barf.

Submitted by Arraya on December 17, 2007 - 5:43pm.

Arraya,
Do you think that all media is really controlled by only 5-6 people? While I wouldn't be too surprised to find that a lot of major media is owned by only a handful of people, and I could be convinced that these handful of people do have an influence, I find it hard to believe that journalistic integity has fallen to such a level that if the news editors of most major news outlets were told to play down Ron Paul, they wouldn't balk and walk out. 'Course there's always the possibility that I'm foolishly naive.
XBoxBo

Look at this graphic. Picture is worth a 1000 words.

http://www.mediachannel.org/ownership/ch...

I'm just shot gunning ideas and don't think it is defined as that. But the concentration of power is not good for the populace to get a wide range of views and equally balanced ideas. I think people try to define conspiracies a little to much. The concentration of powers and the political and corporate interests that push and pull to form public opinion can really give you a 1 or 2 sided view and shield imortant things from people to the point of it shaping our world view of what "they" want us to see. Which all to often is not in our best interest..

That is why the internet is so vidal to leveling the playing field. Just as this blog helps unravel the mystries of the housing market in a way that main stream media can't or won't due to conflicting interests.

People are not getting valuable information and it is forcing critically thinking people to research things themselves and the internet gives them a powerful information base to figure things out and disseminate information.

IMO There are a lot of "conspiracy theorists" out there that are correct more often than not for my taste. However, they are just plain stupid on other levels...

Submitted by CMcG on December 17, 2007 - 7:39pm.

Hedgecock (not that I'm any fan of his, but I do need the traffic reports during his show) went into detail today about how Huckabee and Ron Paul's voting records do not support what they are claiming now, especially on illegals. I'm a lifelong Dem, but I just may leave the vote for president blank because I don't trust any of the candidates of either party, and I don't want my kid (who is voting Obama) to blame me for putting another idiot in the Oval Office. It is somewhat of a comfort to her that I voted against Bush twice.

Submitted by rankandfile on December 17, 2007 - 8:11pm.

Roger Hedgecock has many conservative viewpoints, such as being against the subprime bailout (which I totally agree with). However, I think that he is somewhat of a shill for the Republican party, akin to Rush Limbaugh or Sean Hannity.

I think it is worthy to note that AM 600 KOGO is one of 7 San Diego-area radio stations owned by Clear Channel Communications. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/KOGO

It is also worthy to note that Bain Capital, the private equity firm co-founded by Mitt Romney, has partnered with another party on a leveraged buyout of Clear Channel Communications, Inc:

Bain Capital , and Thomas H. Lee Partners have agreed to pay $19.5 billion in a leveraged buyout agreement with Clear Channel Communications , the largest radio station owner in the country.

Clear Channel owns over 1,100 full-power AM, FM, and shortwave radio stations, twelve radio channels on XM Satellite Radio, and more than 30 television stations in the United States. Premiere Radio Networks , which is the largest syndication company in the United States, is a wholly owned subsidiary of Clear Channel and is home to Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, and many others.

I'll bet those hosts won't reveal that conflict of interest, but it's worth noting when you hear them begin hyping Romney

http://www.blacklistednews.com/view.asp?...

Submitted by CMcG on December 17, 2007 - 8:27pm.

Thank you, rankandfile. It's difficult to determine who Hedgecock supports, at least for me, because I only listen between 4 and 4:30 or so. It seems to me he is against Romney because of flip-flopping. Oddly, today he had a lot of good to say about Edwards.

Submitted by rankandfile on December 17, 2007 - 8:31pm.

In terms of voting record, Ron Paul is probably THE strongest. In other words, his votes have been consistent with his message. Don't take my word for it and check it out for yourself here:

http://www.vote-smart.org/voting_categor...

I'm sure there are other sources where you can find out info on his and other candidates' voting records. Ron Paul's voting record is one of the things I like most about him.

Submitted by Arraya on December 17, 2007 - 9:04pm.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ilNLeXefmNw

Perfect video for the thread...

Submitted by rankandfile on December 17, 2007 - 10:26pm.

Wow Arraya. I couldn't have said it better myself.

Submitted by rankandfile on December 18, 2007 - 12:02pm.

As of the time of this posting, CNN.com has a front page picture and article on Ron Paul entitled, "Who is Ron Paul, the $6 million candidate?"

http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/12/18/p...

It took a little while, but I am glad to see them finally report on it.

Foxnews.com, on the other hand, doesn't have Ron Paul's name anywhere on their front page. They do mention Giuliani coming up on Hannity & Colmes, and do not mention Mike Huckabee's name...although Huckabee didn't just raise $6million in one day. They do, however, have a big top-page picture and article on Mitt Romney titled, "'Perfect' Image Can Hamper Candidate". Just below the picture is the following text:

"Despite impressive spending and poll standings, Romney can have trouble breaking through appearances.
• 21 QUESTIONS ANSWERED ABOUT MORMON FAITH"

To be fair, Fox mentions that this is the first in a series of articles on the 2008 candidates. I'm curious what type of coverage they will give Ron Paul compared to the others in this series.

Submitted by sd_bear on December 18, 2007 - 12:11pm.

I'm not sure why you think fox news would ever do anything "fair and balanced" to begin with. It's not news, its simply entertainment catered to a very specific demographic (ones who care 21 questions answered about the mormon faith).

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