Oct
01
1998

Monica Mania

The New York Times sent Washington reporter Lizette Alvarez to Manchester, New Hampshire (9/4/98) to cover a series of campaign speeches by House Democratic leader Richard Gephardt (D.-Mo.). Early in the article, headlined "Gephardt Trumpets '98 Agenda of His Party," Alvarez noted that "the word 'scandal' or the name Monica Lewinsky did not drop from Gephardt's lips once." And she quoted Rep. Gephardt saying in his speech that "people want to talk about the issues because the issues are important in people's lives." So which issues did Alvarez discuss in her 700-word, 17-paragraph news article? None. Instead, the article analyzed […]

Oct
01
1998

Terrorists Hate Democracy, Law, Apple Pie

A common theme in media analysis about terrorism is that the U.S. has been specially targeted because of its support for democracy and other lofty principles. The Chicago Tribune's R.C. Longworth, for example, made this observation on August 30: Most Americans see their nation and its ideals as benign and positive, and they assume that these ideals--democracy, a free economy, consumerism, untrammeled communications, tolerance, equality between the sexes--can only benefit the rest of the world.... It's a shock to learn that not everyone wants to become just like us. Longworth used Nairobi bombing suspect Osama bin Laden as his prime […]