Against a Republican candidate?
When that candidate is the only consistent conservative?
Say it ain't so!
But nonetheless, I think there is a clear pattern. What the mainstream media reports is often quite different from what actually happened.
Case in point:
There was a GOP debate recently. Actual, real, conservative Republicans who watched the debate were energized by Fred Thompson. What did ABC news have to say? It was a tantrum.
Roger Simon, a "journalist" for the Politico, covered a recent campaign stop by Fred Thompson. If you only read his piece, you'd think Thompson was some sort of evil Grinch, or maybe even Dick Cheney. But if you happened to see a video of the event, you'd think differently. But unfortunately, more people are likely to pick up the Politico story and pass it on as truth. Like those non-fact-checking fools at New Republic...
How about CNN reporting on Fred's answer to the Confederate Flag question in the YouTube debate? You have to read about it second hand, because CNN took down the original. But take a look at that photo captured in the previous link: is CNN going out of its way to paint Fred in a negative light?
How about all the pundits who say Thompson is lazy and not really campaigning? Are they actually looking at his schedule? Are they actually comparing it to other candidates? Well, the big news sources like the NYT and ABC might not... but someone is. However, the lazy talk sticks.
Even conservative Republicans are getting their digs in on Fred. Like a few weeks back, when the FOX News "all star" panel of Fred Barnes, Nina Easton, and Charles Krauthammer - three people who, for the most part, agree with virtually all of Fred's platform - lambasted him as a washed up candidate... despite his being in second place in national polls.
I think it is simple: they don't want him to win.
In the case of liberals, the reasoning is obvious. Liberals like to attack conservatives. But why are conservatives so eager to paint Fred in the worst light, even when facts get in the way? I think it is because so many conservatives in the punditocracy got invested in this race ages ago, before Fred entered. They found their Giulianis and their Romneys and they made commitments to their candidates. When Fred came along late, he shook up things. Rather than these folks admit they were silly to become so rigidly enamored of their pet candidates months - or years - before the "serious" campaigning started, it was easier to just set off on a vendetta of personal destruction against the candidate who had the nerve to enter the race at the appropriate time, on his own terms.
If the day comes when Barack Obama wipes up the electoral college floor with Mike Huckabee, we can blame all the "experts" who decided, for one reason or another, that Fred Thompson wasn't really a good candidate - even though, by all first hand accounts, he is.
Hopefully it won't come to that. This is the era of the new media. In earlier days, an article like Simon's would get picked up and copied everywhere with no one at all to challenge it. Shoddy reporting by CNN would be all anyone saw. Now, we have bloggers furiously providing primary source evidence to the contrary. I just hope it is enough to counter the "common wisdom."
I'm just sick of the absolute bias and complete lack of objective, factual reporting by the MSM. After Rathergate in 2004, I hoped things would get better. They have, a little, but the problems are still there - and right now, they seem to be stacking up against Fred Thompson.