Boehlert documents how the main-stream media sat on stories such as Rove outing Valerie Plame Wilson to Joe Cooper (Cooper did not ask Rove for a waiver of confidentiality until after the election because the story was too “explosive” in an election year.)
In the same vein, NBC revealed two days after the election that “U.S. military officials have said for some time that they were putting off any kind of major offensive operation in [Fallujah] until after the U.S. elections, for obvious political reasons,” according to Jim Miklaszewski. Should voters have known that Bush planned to escalate the war right after the election? NBC doesn’t report, so you can’t decide.
Over on CBS, News president Andrew Hayward thought it would have been “inappropriate to broadcast [Ed Bradley’s 30 minute report debunking administration claims about Saddam’s nuclear weapon capabilities] so close to the presidential election.” [Emphasis added.] How close was it? The election was six weeks away at the time of the unusual announcement. That swift-boating of Dan Rather worked!
For Big Mitch, the most interesting part of the HuffPo note was that the New York Times sat on the story of the Bush bulge.
You may recall that during the presidential debates, many attentive viewers noted a bulge under Dubya’s jacket. He passed it off as the work of a “badly tailored suit,” and said that the presidential tailor had been fired. Surprise, surprise! Bush was lying.
The Times quashed a story of a NASA scientist who used the same techniques that are used to analyze photos from space to sharpen photos from the debate. These enhanced photos clearly showed that Bush could not be trusted.
According to the reporting of David Lindorff, writing for Fairness and Accuracy in Report’s Extra!, Nelson was told by a Times reporters that the bulge article, complete with his compelling imagery, would run Oct. 28, five days before the election. Instead, on the night of Oct. 27 the story was killed. In an email the next day, one of the Times reporters apologized to Nelson: “Sorry to have been a source of disappointment and frustration to you.” Two months later, executive editor Keller explained, “In the end, nobody, including the scientist who brought it up, could take the story beyond speculation. In the crush of election-finale stories, it died a quiet, unlamented death.”Why was this so interesting to Big Mitch? Because of one little-bitty parenthetical remark that Boehlert includes:
(The bulge was later confirmed to be a bullet proof vest.)According to the Houston Independent Media Center, Dubya was “wearing a medical device for persons at risk of cardiac arrest.” It is a LifeVest wearable defibrillator. He started using it sometime after his January 2002 fainting spell, which was attributed to choking. Based on photos showing him wearing the device, one can conclude the fainting was due to atrial fibrillation (AF), which his father also had. His father’s AF was caused by Graves hyperthyroidism, which his mother also has. Bush likely has AF and less likely Graves’, based on his family history and symptoms. The AF may have caused a stroke or TIA (mini-stroke), of which physicians watching the debates detected symptoms. Observers have noted psychological symptoms consistent with this and with Wernicke-Korsakoff disease.”
Here’s another picture showing the device under Dubya’s tee-shirt.
People pretty much knew that Bush was a liar before the debate. I can only wonder if, in an election so close, it would have made a difference to know that the man who was one fluttering heartbeat away from the presidency was fellow heart–patient Dick Cheney, a man who’s warmth and popularity can be compared to that of body lice.
“… and tell ‘em Big Mitch sent ya!”