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NY Times: The Blog Slugfest That Wasn’t

John on July 24, 2006 at 9:25 am

Sunday’s Times had a short piece on the neck rub at the G8 summit titled The Politics of Good Touch, Bad Touch. Essentially they’ve wrapped the groping story up in a neutral analysis of politically expedient touching. Nevertheless, you get the distinct impression the article was merely an excuse to publish the pictures and throw out the accusation.

The Times, of course, whitewashes the extreme statements that have been made about this incident on liberal blogs. The story says:

[I]n the United States, conservative and liberal bloggers slugged it out over whether the act was one of warmth or something more sinister, like an old-fashioned grope.

Not exactly how it went down. In reality, liberals like Taylor Marsh jumped all over this with both feet. In an update to this post she writes:

…President Bush has been caught sexually harassing German Chancellor Merkel, and some of us don’t like it…Why is it that conservatives can’t take issues that personally affect women seriously? It’s like an affront to their manhood, which was proven after Bush’s actions against Merkel turned her to disgust. No privacy, no respect, not even as the German Chancellor, because I can touch whomever I want. This is the response from conservatives in the modern era. No respect for women at all... It’s an affront to every woman and, frankly, most men; that is unless you’re a boorish partisan who is just too plain ignorant to understand women deserve respect, which means HANDS OFF, unless you’re invited. That it was the German Chancellor that Bush was fondling makes it even worse.

It wasn’t “like” and old fashioned grope. According to Taylor Marsh, Bush was a sexual harasser guilty of fondling Merkel. What’s more it was just a symptom of the broader conservative sickness. Conservatives have no respect for women at all! That was the tenor of the liberal attack on this. And what was the response?

As it happens, Taylor Marsh’s site (author: Mash) did a roundup of conservative reaction to the “story.” It was hardly a slugfest. HotAir’s Allah responded with humor. LGF gave a roll of the eyes. The bottom line:

Overall, I am rather disappointed with the wingnut defense of the blitz-massage. I expected a more robust defense. Oh well, maybe next time Mr. Bush gropes another female foreign leader they will be better prepared with the talking points.

So liberal blogs accuse the President of sexual harassement, groping, fondling and add that all conservatives have no respect for women. When conservative blogs barely respond, the NY Times summarizes it as:

[C]onservative and liberal bloggers slugged it out…

Sorry, no. The slugging was only on one side. The Times wanted an excuse to publish the pictures and air the accusations. Turning this non-event into a blog controversy was just the ticket. As it happens, there was a real left vs. right blog story taking place over the last several days. Has anyone seen an airing of Glenn Greenwald’s sock-puppetetry by the Times?


I didn’t think so.

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Category: MSM & Bias |

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