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The Washington Post, Caught in a Webb of Bias

In addition to sounding something more like what John Mark Karr would write than a U.S. Senator, the resent release of Jim Webb's writings on incest and pedophilia further exposes the horrifically biased coverage of this race from the Washington Post.

And I'm not the first to notice:

Macaca Business
The Washington Post vs. George Allen.
By Stephen Spruiell

Even by the usual standards, the Washington Post's coverage of the Virginia Senate race between incumbent George Allen and former Secretary of the Navy Jim Webb has been remarkably one-sided. Since mid-August, the Post has published approximately 100 newspaper articles and editorials about allegations that Allen is racist. To counter such obsessive coverage from the region's most high-profile newspaper, the Allen campaign has dredged up a number of politically incorrect comments from Webb's past. The result? One of the nation's most promising political races has degenerated into a mudfest. ...

As the campaign got dirtier, the Post exhausted every conceivable angle in order to keep the "macaca" story in the paper. First, it sought out the professional grievance groups ("For One Group, 'Macaca' Recalls Slurs After 9/11"). Then, it compared Allen's woes to those of other (Republican) politicians ("Comments Haunt Another Senator; Montana's Burns Joked About Latinos"). Finally -- two weeks after the incident -- the Post profiled Macaca himself ("Fairfax Native Says Allen's Words Stung").

Allen responded to the Post's "macaca" drumbeat with more allegations that Webb had made un-PC remarks of his own. This time, Allen seized upon an essay Webb had written in 1979 titled "Women Can't Fight" in which Webb expressed his strong opposition to women in combat. The Washington Post gave this story the headline, "Va. Senate Race Goes Negative on 1979 Essay" -- as if the Webb campaign hadn't already gone negative by milking the "macaca" incident for weeks.

The whole thing is a must read, the overtly overt bias will astound you.

What is even more disturbing is the last of effort on the Post's part to look at far more serious allegations against Webb that have been in circulation for a month or more:

Virginia's Senator Allen suffers from double standard on racism
By Larry Elder
Senator George Allen [R-VA] seemed a lock for reelection. That is, before the "stunning" revelation that, as a college student in the 1970s, he used the "N" word. ...

Let's play who's-the-racist-and-what-is-the-statute-of-limitations.
Consider the allegations that Allen's Democratic opponent, Jim Webb, also used the "N" word. According to former acquaintance Dan Cragg, while a freshman from 1963 to 1964 at University of Southern California, Webb used to drive through Watts, a predominantly black area of Los Angeles, pointing rifles and shouting the "N" word at blacks. Moreover, Webb, a published novelist, liberally uses the "N" word in his work. Examples: "They want stupid n*ggers, they'd all pay to see a dumb*ss n*gger." -- "Fields of Fire," p. 302. "Don't know why I crave watermelon the way I have over the past few weeks. Jimmy says I must have a n*gger in the woodpile." -- "A Country Such As This," p. 34.

It's like looking thru the looking glass....

Allen's gets accused (by admitted Democratic partisans) of using the word 'nigger' in the 1970's and the Post goes wild... Webb gets accused of pointing rifles at blacks -a far more serious charge- and the Washington Post is strangely silent.

As the saying goes, "There's no standard like a double standard."

It will be interesting to see what the WaPo does with these new revelations. Will they follow them up and do any reporting on thier own? It's not that hard...

As Lori pointed me to, John at RWN has been all over the book excerpts for weeks. I found some additional disturbing quotes tonight that will be making their way out shortly. (that frankly make Webb look truly sick)

Will the Washington Post write 100 stories and editorials on Webb and his demeaning comments on women and his predilection for pedophilia?

As long as he's still a Democrat, I wouldn't hold my breath.

Postscript: As of this writing, the Washingotn Post has written 166 stories and editorials referrring to the macaca comment. And to think back in August, The Post's own Howard Kurtz declared the macaca story over. How naive Howie, how naive.

Update: How fitting... On the front page of this morning's Washington Post was this glowing tribute to Webb, where they go out of their way to give him cover for his 1979 Washingtonian magazine article about women in combat. I wonder how they'll defend his writings tomorrow.

So biased it's pathetic.


Listed below are links to weblogs that reference The Washington Post, Caught in a Webb of Bias:

» Wizbang Politics linked with Whoa! Jim Webb's Dirty Novel Passages

» Webloggin linked with What a Tangled Webb…

» Mary Katharine Ham linked with Smutgate: Webb Gets Burned By Bizarro Book Passages

Comments (27)

Sam Clemens (D-Missouri) wo... (Below threshold)

Sam Clemens (D-Missouri) would have a tough time getting elected in this town, wouldn't he? (We won't bring up Senator Robert Byrd, now, will we?)

On the other hand, I have it on good authority that Mr. Webb at one time wore diapers and reportedly displayed a strong preference for running around naked. And, to the surprise of no one, the whereabouts of his enablers, who now would both be in their late 80's, are unknown but are widely suspected to be dead. A rather inconvenient coincidence, it seems to me.

Elder apparently believes p... (Below threshold)

Elder apparently believes placing the word "nigger" in the mouth of a fictional character in a novel to be the moral equivalent of yelling "monkey" at a dark-skinned man. Ludicrous notion. Paul, what are you thinking? Allen is a man who, though a US Senator, yells racial epithets today. Webb is not. You may have overriding political interests in voting for Allen, but don't let those interests alter your perception of reality.

Webster you are a hack of t... (Below threshold)

Webster you are a hack of the worst variety.

100 stories in the Post over macacagate and yet his opponent is accused of pointing a rifle at blacks in Watts and not a story is run?

And you don't see the disparity????

Talk about letting your interests alter your perception of reality.

You're a hack.

Excuse me, 166 stories.... (Below threshold)

Excuse me, 166 stories.

Paul, you're name-calling. ... (Below threshold)

Paul, you're name-calling. Please wipe the foam flecks from your mouth. Stories of Allen's racism have always been known and available. They were only unleashed this year in WaPo because he today, not 40 years ago as with the Webb allegation, still holds those views as evidenced by calling a dark-skinned man a monkey. Don't you get it? He still holds those views. Webb has admitted to having used the word "nigger" and has denounced that use which was 40 years ago when he was a youth. Allen denies using the word (please!) and continues to use racist slurs this year at age 50 something.

No Webster, it's not name c... (Below threshold)

No Webster, it's not name calling. Calling you a fucktard is name calling. Calling you a politcal hack is just an obvious observation.

The Post runs 166 stories about Macacagate and I make a single post and you tell me to "Please wipe the foam flecks from your mouth." ??!!??

Hack Webster. Pure Hack.

And how do you explain away his incest and pedophilia writings?

I asked you to wipe the foa... (Below threshold)

I asked you to wipe the foam away because you are name-calling. Then you out with the profanity. When a US Senator calls a dark-skinned man a monkey you expect the WaPo to ignore it?

A hack is someone who doesn't address arguments but does name call and change the subject. Allen made his racist remarks today and it is dishonest, or nonsensical, to equate them with Webb's behavior of 40 years ago.

Characterizing Webb's fiction as "incest and pedophilia writings" as though he is a pornographer is par for the course for you on this post.

"We won't bring up Senat... (Below threshold)

"We won't bring up Senator Robert Byrd, now, will we"

As Robert Byrd still deeply regrets:

"an extraordinarily foolish mistake. It has emerged throughout my life to haunt and embarrass me, and has taught me in a very graphic way what one major mistake can do to one's life, career and reputation, I displayed very bad judgment, due to immaturity and a lack of seasoned reasoning."

But thats not enough!!

But if some wingnut were a member that would be par for the course -if they were even competent enough to join.

Perhaps Byrd should have taken the high road and also included drunk driving, drug abuse and evasion from combat duty to his checkered past.

It seems that his constituents in that ultra liberal pinko state of West Vriginia just arent hearing enough of the sane voices yelling "KKK!!" "Chappaquddick!!!" "Moonbat!!"

But by all means, keep flogging.

>Characterizing Webb's fict... (Below threshold)

>Characterizing Webb's fiction as "incest and pedophilia writings" as though he is a pornographer is par for the course for you on this post.


"A shirtless man walked toward them along a mud pathway. His muscles were young and hard, but his face was devastated with wrinkles. His eyes were so red that they appeared to be burned by fire. A naked boy ran happily toward him from a little plot of dirt. The man grabbed his young son in his arms, turned him upside down, and put the boy's penis in his mouth."

Page 408:
"A hundred meters upriver, then cut to your right, and you will be at the park where the man kissed the little boy's penis."

Page 409:
"Why did he kiss the little boy's penis?" wondered Dzung. "I do not know," said Manh. And then he shook his head, amazed at Dzung's serenity.

Page 423:
"The vacant lot where the man had kissed the little boy's penis was just across the street"

You're a hack.

The filth he wrote WILL hur... (Below threshold)
Florence Schmieg:

The filth he wrote WILL hurt him in Virginia. You can either write stuff like this or you cannot. He is the one who chose to write this. It will be put into the mix with everything else when choosing a senator and that is appropriate.

I will back up Paul--YOU AR... (Below threshold)

I will back up Paul--YOU ARE A HACK--get it? You sound just like Alan "eyebrow" Combs-the official excusemaker for the democraps,

Paul,Where is your d... (Below threshold)

Where is your defense of Allen's racist remarks? Is it okay to call people of other races monkeys? Is that your US Senator?

Webb's work is fiction. You have provided less than a page, out of context, from a book of nearly 400 pages. Read the Amazon critiques. There are disturbing passages in lots of books, and it doesn't reflect author predilections. Of course even you must know this, but you must also know the irony of your calling anyone else hack, at least I fervently hope you do. You've earned it.

Paul's logic would also i... (Below threshold)

Paul's logic would also indict Mark Twain as quite the Ni**er hater.

Don't forget Bill O'Reilly's noveletteThose Who Tresspass, which would mean O'Reily as quite the pervert --er... maybe that's not the best example..But anyway..

Webster,Actually, ... (Below threshold)


Actually, it does not matter if Webb were painting or writing non-fiction, the pornagraphic references would not be appropriate. His detailed familiarity with the subject crosses the "creepy" threshold.

I make no accusations about his personal life, but anyone who writes like this is just plain creepy. It does not matter if it is fiction or not.

Just plain creepy.

David,Now that is an... (Below threshold)

Now that is an honest, clear-minded response. First one directed at me on this thread. It is creepy. Ought to fit right in on Capitol Hill.

Webster,Stick a fo... (Below threshold)


Stick a fork in Webb, he is done. The only thing left to do is watch the man embarrass himself in public by showing he wants fame a bit too much.

Based on his reactions so far, he has shown he is not ready for the prime time. The way to handle these things is make a funny joke about yourself and move on.

As I said, stick a fork in him.

BTW, these types of stories... (Below threshold)

BTW, these types of stories are the proving ground that most people look at instinctively. Most people are pretty fair minded and if they see someone that can face a trial with good humor and a clear mind, then they will respect that and consider voting for the man/woman.

However, if they see someone who lashes out and reacts as if someone just threatened his family, then people see that this person is not ready for prime time in politics.

It is the difference between Bill Clinton (circa 1992, not the present one. The present one has severe issues with reactivity) and Hillary Clinton. It is why Hillary will never succeed in a tight campaign. At least, not unless she completely changes her behavior.

Of course, the fact that th... (Below threshold)

Of course, the fact that the passage has nothing to do with incest and pedophilia but deals with tribal rituals and how out of place the American characters felt when seeing it, means nothing?

The hell with truth and context, there are elections to be won!

David, I thought onl... (Below threshold)

I thought only Demos gloated before the election. I haven't seen Webb's reaction to the latest dustup. Allen's reaction to macaca was transparent lying (that he didn't know what macaca meant), and there was no good humor to be had. Allen is no prime-timer either, but he may well have enough stuff to win.

The Virginia campaign should rightly turn on terrorism and Iraq. Was Iraq a good idea or not? Are we satisfied with the current approach to the war and terrorism? If yes, Allen wins. If no, no. I suspect Allen will win because of better organization, money, and an undecided electorate. We'll see Tuesday. It'll certainly be closer than it looked in May.

You want to see something f... (Below threshold)

You want to see something funny? Check out the Wash Post story today titled The Year Of Playing Dirtier.

It's all about how those mean Rethuglic... err, Republicans are all about smears while the Dems are going for "substance". I doubt a Dem staffer would have any edits at all. They only mention GOP smear ads and don't mention any Dem ones. They totally ignore the way Steele has been treated and absolutely ignore the large (humongous?) part they've played in bringing the VA campaign down to a very low level.

They have no shame and absolutely no sense of irony.

The WashPost has been circl... (Below threshold)

The WashPost has been circling the drain of journalistic integrity for at least a year or more. They keep hanging on. Among their own muck and slime, and loving it, smilingly celebrating.

Sad. Pathetic. Disgusting. Revolting. And yet they have not clue one. Alternative universes are real people. Buh-lee dat

Webster:"I thought... (Below threshold)


"I thought only Demos gloated before the election."

If I had a horse in this race, maybe I could gloat. I don't. I was merely pointing to a political reality. Webb has about 24 (maybe it is already too late I do not know) more hours to find a graceful response (something other than about the evil Karl Rove) and after that he is done. He will lose by 10-15 points easy. There are just too many regular folks who find this language objectionable regardless of the setting.

"Allen's reaction to macaca was transparent lying (that he didn't know what macaca meant),"

Maybe political wonks know what this word meant before a month or so ago, but I didn't and I would guess that most of the country didn't either. Most people gave Allen a pass for the very same reason.

"The Virginia campaign should rightly turn on terrorism and Iraq."

Campaigns almost never turn on issues. Regular people vote for who they like and against those who they don't like. It is not just voting that this occurs. It is true in business and most activities.

This is human nature. Again, the folks that Webb was counting on to beat Allen will leave him over the next few days. You may call it gloating, I just call it political reality.

Webb will lose big and the reason is because he needed to come up with a much more graceful response.

"Stick a fork in him"? Don... (Below threshold)

"Stick a fork in him"? Don't kid yourself, David. You're gloating. Not that there's anything wrong with that. I would only do it if I'm absolutely sure because I hate eating crow. But you are sure, and I would guess that you will prove right. Good luck.

Paul,Where is your d... (Below threshold)

Where is your defense of Allen's racist remarks? Is it okay to call people of other races monkeys? Is that your US Senator?

Webb's work is fiction. You have provided less than a page, out of context, from a book of nearly 400 pages. Read the Amazon critiques. There are disturbing passages in lots of books, and it doesn't reflect author predilections. Of course even you must know this, but you must also know the irony of your calling anyone else hack, at least I fervently hope you do. You've earned it.

I wouldn't be so sure he knows that Webster. That would seem to indicate that Paul has read a work of fiction by someone other than Ann coulter, and I wouldn't be willing to put money on that.

And I don't really think Paul's a hack. That would imply that he has a moral center and the intelligence to recognize when someone violates it. I just think he's dumb and morally challenged.

seamus,"Webb's wor... (Below threshold)


"Webb's work is fiction."

Just because it is fiction, does not make it any less objectionable or the person who wrote it any less creepy. If a person is Steven King, then being a little bit creepy is not a bad thing. If one is running for US Senator, creepy probably loses a whole lot of regular people votes.

"Where is your defense of Allen's racist remarks?"

I don't know anything about Allen, but the problem that you have in convincing any normal people that Allen is a racist is that Allen does not look or act like one would think a racist would look or act like.

This is the same problem that Reps have in calling Robert Byrd a racist. He may still be a grand wizard in the KKK for all I know, but he looks and sounds like a kindly old granpa.

To most normal folks, the conclusion that Allen is a racist is non sequitur, it does not follow simple logic. However, even as I look at Webb in the photos today, he looks a lot more creepy than he did yesterday. Same photos, but today I have a completely different impression.

Is it fair? Probably not but it is reality and unless Webb can quickly turn that impression he will lose bad.

Hopefully, Webb will lose b... (Below threshold)

Hopefully, Webb will lose because he is percieved to be a creep. Although sad to say he would fit right in Washington. If we truly have the government we deserve, I hang my head.

Is there an adult in the We... (Below threshold)

Is there an adult in the Webb campaign headquarters?

I just saw the video of him comparing what he wrote to what Lynn Cheney wrote. If he would just say something to the effect "I wish I were getting royalties for all the times my book is now being quoted" he could put the whole thing into perspective that he wrote such disgusting trash to make money.

People would get over it and remember that many people do a lot of things that they wish they didn't have to to make a living. No, he continues to take himself way too seriously and now he is trying to trash a woman who has handled hiwself well in public.

If Webb wants to get out of this hole, he needs to quit digging. Funny that I never noticed the big "L" written on his forehead before.






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