The media's shameful exploitation of political soundbites

If you listened only to cable-news bobbleheads, you'd think President Obama is a clueless economic neophyte and Mitt Romney hates firefighters

Paul Brandus

It was a week where the politicians stepped in the you-know-what. And it was a week that showed one side of how the media works — the dumb and lazy side.

Where to begin? You had Bill Clinton's spokesman issuing a statement saying that what the former president meant to tell CNBC was that his views on extending the Bush tax cuts are, in fact, aligned with President Obama's. Earlier, Clinton had inadvertently made it seem like he was supporting the Republican position that taxes should not be raised on high-income earners. "I'm very sorry about what happened," he told CNN. "Upper-income people are going to have to contribute to the long-term debt reduction." But too late. Republicans and anyone else eager to undermine the president had already gotten two days of fodder out of Clinton's remarks. The clarification got little play from the news media.

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