The Corner

Oil For Food Apathy

For anyone who wants to quibble with the notion that the media favor Kerry, consider this: Since January 1, 2004, here are the number of morning and evening news stories and interview segments the networks have devoted to uncovering the growing United Nations Oil for Food program bribery scandal: four. NBC aired three: a January 15 report by Myers, a July 20 report from Andrea Mitchell, and a Myers story on October 6, when the Duelfer report came out detailing the scam. ABC aired only one this year: from investigative reporter Brian Ross on April 21, the day the UN announced its own internal probe into the scandal. But we found CBS has not aired a single story on the scandal, even when using a list of different search terms in the Nexis search engine trying to find one. Maybe they were hip-deep in phony documents.

Why isn’t this a major scandal for the major networks? Despite the nine ongoing probes, the networks would rather chase anti-Bush angles. ABC, CBS, and NBC have combined for more than 75 stories on George W. Bush’s National Guard Service, more than 50 stories on “skyrocketing” gasoline prices, and hundreds on prison abuse at Abu Ghraib. All year, Kerry has touted a greater UN and European role in Iraq. Now, those players look like what liberals called “the coalition of the bribed.” And the anchormen are keeping quiet. More on the media apathy here.

Tim GrahamTim Graham is Director of Media Analysis at the Media Research Center, where he began in 1989, and has served there with the exception of 2001 and 2002, when served ...

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