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The Grey Lady puts the hate on Edwards

That darn liberal media! I'm not going to dignify the Times hit piece with a link; go read TPM.

It's like their takeaway from goring Gore and swiftboating Kerry is that they can keep running the same play over and over again, isn't it? And they wonder why circulation is falling.

And as I said: If the press hates Edwards, that gives him instant credibility with me.

UPDATE The says it, better and at greater length. It's worth quoting him in full:

THEY NEVER GET TIRED: In this post, Kevin Drum discussed our possible answer to E. J. Dionne’s important question: If voters say they prefer a Democratic president next year, why are McCain and Giuliani running (basically) even with Clinton, Edwards and Obama? We think one part of the answer is obvious. The mainstream press has been promoting Saints John and Rudy for years—and trashing most Major Dem hopefuls.

Kevin considered a possibility which he then rejected. “Who knows?” he wrote. “Maybe one advantage of the absurdly early campaign season this year will be to help Dems out by letting the press get all the idiot stories out of their system before the public is paying attention.” Kevin went on to reject the notion that the press will “get all the idiot stories out of their system.” We thought it was worth recalling this aspect of Campaign 2000.

For us, the most remarkable aspect of that campaign’s coverage was the way the press corps kept reinventing its “idiot stories” about Gore. The notion that Gore was a delusional liar (like Bill Clinton) was firmly in place by mid-March 1999; there were twenty long months of campaigning to go. But the mainstream press corps never came close to getting this story-line out of its system. Instead, they kept inventing absurd new ways to drive home their god-given narrative.

The early staple that Al Gore lied about the farm chores was such an utter, laughable hoax that even the press corps largely dropped it—after a three-month run, of course. Result? In November 1999, the corps came up with a pleasing replacement: Al Gore said he discovered Love Canal. Meanwhile, their capacity to keep inventing new “lies” proved to be inexhaustible. By mid-September 2000, Gore was pulling away in the polls, so the corps came up with two more ludicrous “lies:” the union lullaby and the doggy pills. The mainstream press pushed these “lies” very hard—and Gore fell back in the polls. The first Bush-Gore debate produced several new “lies,” and Bush ended up in the White House.

With this, as with several other themes, the most striking aspect of the coverage was the press corps’ astounding ability to keep rebooting its preferred story-lines. Simply put, these people never tire of their “idiot stories.” Almost surely, this sort of thing will happen again if Hillary Clinton is the Dem nominee. (Developing narrative: She’s thuggish, vicious—a mobster.) Beyond that, we wouldn’t predict. But the tendencies of the past fifteen years are by now depressingly clear.

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