Tags: Oprah | Olbermann | bias

Oprah, Olbermann, and Media Bias

Monday, 08 Sep 2008 12:10 PM

By Lowell Ponte

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Is afternoon TV talk queen Oprah Winfrey a misogynist, a hater of women? Or does this talented entertainer who earns $100 million per year via mostly white female audiences only undermine white women such as Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and New York Sen. Hillary Clinton?

How else can we explain Oprah’s dogmatic refusal to interview Palin, GOP presidential candidate Sen. John McCain’s running mate, who could become the first female vice president of the United States?

Palin’s speech at the GOP convention attracted 37.2 million television viewers, nearly as many as the Democratic National Convention speech by its presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama, who now is running 10 points behind McCain in USA Today/Gallup’s likely voter polling.

A Palin appearance on Oprah’s show would attract millions of viewers, which is why Oprah refuses.

“At the beginning of the presidential campaign . . . I made the decision not to use my show as a platform for any of the candidates,” Winfrey told ABC News.

This would be fair except for one tiny problem: Oprah has used her program repeatedly to showcase, promote, and lionize Barack Obama.

Oprah’s pious statement, therefore, rings hollow. Imagine Oprah’s outcry if “Meet the Press” repeatedly did friendly interviews with John McCain and then announced it would interview Obama only after Election Day.

Web journalist Matt Drudge on Sept. 5 reported that Oprah staffers were “sharply divided on the merits of booking Sarah Palin,” a statement Winfrey in a written statement to ABC News called “categorically untrue.”

“I agree that Sarah Palin would be a fantastic interview,” Winfrey’s statement continued, “and I would love to have her on after the campaign is over.”

Palin therefore will get no invitation to Oprah’s show until after the election, when she can no longer sway votes.

Oprah has strongly endorsed Barack Obama. During his convention speech, said Oprah, she “wept her eyelashes off.” “What I saw with Barack Obama was something that was transcendent and I felt transformational for me as a human being and for this country,” said Oprah in the emotive New Age psychobabble for which she is famed.

“And I only pray in the deepest part of my being that America will rise to this moment,” she continued, as quoted in Newsday. “And I feel that what he was able to offer us as individual citizens and as a united country was something that we have never seen before . . . I think it’s the most powerful thing I’ve ever experienced.”

When this charisma queen genuflects worshipfully before Barack’s mesmerism as if he were a god, the results can be powerful.

University of Maryland economists Craig Garthwaite and Tim Moore calculate that Oprah’s support produced 1 million votes for Obama. This is approximately the margin by which Obama inched past Hillary Clinton to win the Democratic nomination.

Some might say that Oprah is a traitor to her gender, a turn (petty) coat whose support for Obama destroyed Hillary’s chance in 2008 to become America’s first female president.

Oprah apparently thinks that blood is thicker than womankind’s feminist solidarity. What she shares with Barack Obama is the black-skinned ancestry of Africa. Oprah, however, is a descendent of American slaves while Obama, born of a father from Kenya, is not.

And thus Oprah and her executive producer Sheri Salata, who as Drudge reported “has contributed thousands of dollars to Obama’s campaign," spurned any thought of giving persuasive Sarah Palin access to Oprah’s bamboozled weekday TV audience.

Oprah has worked hard to attract and hold the millions of viewers whose hypnotized eyes she sells to advertisers for astronomical profit. Leftists have rushed to her defense, chanting that Oprah has the right to interview whomever she wishes.

These are the same leftists — lest we forget — who bray loudly for restoration of the so-called “Fairness Doctrine” to force leftwing views onto talk radio stations regardless of owner or audience wishes. Indeed, Obama promises to unleash capricious and partisan government censors on talk radio when he becomes president.

But when Oprah refuses to offer fairness and balance on her show, these same leftists stifle their mantras demanding “fairness” on “the public airwaves.” The double-standard hypocrisy of the Left and of Ms. Winfrey against fairness for Republicans is overwhelming.

Another minor revelation: America by now is familiar with Obama’s Black Liberation radical church and its just-retired America-hating pastor Jeremiah Wright, Obama’s spiritual mentor. Oprah Winfrey in past years also attended this same church, and she now speaks of Obama as if he and his ultra-leftist politics came from God. (The objective National Journal ranked Obama the Senate’s most liberal member and his running mate Joe Biden third. Ranked fourth was Bernie Sanders, Vermont’s Democrat-allied independent senator. Obama is three clicks to the left of this self-described socialist bent on abolishing capitalism.)

Despite her support for him, Obama has ridiculed Oprah. On March 4, 2007, in Selma, Ala., Obama criticized young African-Americans who want “to make as much money as you can, to . . . get some of that Oprah money."

Oprah’s comradeship with Obama is certainly not based solely on wanting to boost black men. Last year when asked to invite the African-American man highest in the U.S. government to discuss his autobiography, Oprah Winfrey refused Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.

Oprah, since you have already given airtime to one side, in the name of fairness, ethics, and decency you should at least devote two hours in October to what millions in your audience want — an hour interview with Gov. Palin and an hour with her Democratic counterpart Sen. Joe Biden. (Ask Biden about the $1.8 million channeled by giant corporations to the company of his lobbyist son.)

Speaking of media bias, congratulations to MSNBC for officially demoting hyper-partisan Democrats Chris Matthews and Keith Olbermann from news anchors to mere pundits during the upcoming debates and election night.

In a Freudian slip Sunday on ABC’s “This Week” self-described Christian Barack Hussein Obama referred to “my Muslim faith.” We wish him a happy Ramadan, the holy Islamic month of dawn-to-dusk fasting that started Sept. 2.

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