Sixty percent of Americans believe that the media is reporting things in Iraq either accurately or better than they really are. Just 29% approve of Bush’s handling of the Iraq war. But if you watched today’s “townhall” event with President Bush you’d never know it.
Towards the end of the event — which lasted over an hour and was extensively covered by all three cable networks — a woman launched into tirade against the media’s coverage of the Iraq war. She concluded that, if people knew the truth, they’d “never say another negative thing about this conflict again.” She recieved a standing ovation. Watch it:
The effect of these staged events is to give people a false impression of people’s attitudes about the President’s policies. The media seems happy to play along.
QUESTION: I want to let you know that every service at our church, you are by name lifted up in prayer — and you and your staff and all of our leaders. And we believe in you. We are behind you. And we cannot thank you enough for what you’ve done to shape our country. Second of all, this is my husband who has returned from a 13- month tour in Tikrit.
BUSH: Oh, yes. Thank you, buddy. Welcome back.
QUESTION: His job while serving was as a broadcast journalist. And he has brought back several DVDs full of wonderful footage of reconstruction, of medical things going on. And I ask you this from the bottom of my heart for a solution to this, because it seems that our major media networks don’t want to portray the good. They just want to focus…
BUSH: OK, hold on a second.
QUESTION: They just want to focus on another car bomb or they just want to focus on some more bloodshed or they just want to focus on how they don’t agree with you and what you’re doing, when they don’t even probably know how you’re doing what you’re doing anyway. But what can we do to get that footage on CNN, on Fox, to get it on Headline News, to get it on the local news? Because you can send it to the news people — and I’m sorry I’m rambling — like I have…
BUSH: So was I, though, for about an hour.
QUESTION: … can you use this, and it’ll just end up in a drawer because it’s good. It portrays the good. And if people could see that, if the American people could see it, there would never be another negative word about this conflict.
BUSH: Well, I appreciate that.