Friday, February 08, 2008

Editing out what hurts




-- by Dave

One of the way Lou Dobbs has managed to evade responsibility for his outrageously bad reporting on immigration has been to bluster and evade when he's on the other air.

And, with the case of the recent attempts by national Latino leaders to hold him accountable, there's always the propagandist's oldest friend, the carefully edited videotape.

Kyledeb at Citizen Orange noticed the other day that when CNN put up its own video of Dobbs' confrontation with Janet Murguia of the National Council of La Raza on its website, there was quite a bit left out:
In the online video of the exchange, CNN.com edited out some of the most important indictments of the Minutemen, and the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) along with their connections to hate and vigilantism. CNN.com also edited out the exchanges quantifying the increase in hate crimes against Latinos, and the few times Lou Dobbs actually says something positive about undocumented migrants.

You can see the CNN version of the video here, and the unedited version of the interview here, here, and here.

Now, I don't think this falls into the category of censorship (or even self-censorship) per se, but most likely is a product of an editor or producer's decision not to run the full interview, which for a site like CNN (which tends mostly to run excerpts) is nothing particularly unusual. Even though most of its excerpts run unedited, this was a long interview and so what we got was the edited version. You can clearly see the edits anyway -- there's no attempt to obscure them.

But it certainly is revealing what got left out. Dobbs' main tactic as a propagandizing pseudo-journalist is to ignore important counter-information and act as if it didn't exist. I suppose it's not surprising that CNN's editors operate on the same wavelength.

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