CyberAlert -- 10/27/2000 -- Networks Pounced on "Daisy" Ad

Networks Pounced on "Daisy" Ad; Chinese Money to Dems "Unproven"?; MRC Cited on Comics Page -- Back to today's CyberAlert

1) Media Reality Check on network reaction to the "Daisy" ad: "Networks Talk Ads, But Ignore the NAACP's: ABC, CBS, NBC Air NARAL Ad for Gore; ABC, CBS Hit Ads Against Gore on Sharpton, Chinagate."

2) The Associated Press dismissed as "unproven" the charge in the new "Daisy" ad that China "dumped money into the 1996 campaign" and Kathleen Hall Jamieson, apparently serious, told the New York Times: "It lacks the subtlety of the original ad."

3) The Media Research Center made today's comics page as "Mallard Fillmore" has Al Gore citing the MRC. Plus, today's New York Post "MediaWatch" recounted our analysis of how the networks jumped on the RAND report while ignoring Gore's secret deal with Russia.


Today's Campaign 2000 Media Reality Check by Tim Graham distributed by fax this afternoon and titled, "Networks Talk Ads, But Ignore the NAACP's: ABC, CBS, NBC Air NARAL Ad for Gore; ABC, CBS Hit Ads Against Gore on Sharpton, Chinagate."

This report contrasts how the networks continue to refuse to tell viewers about the NAACP ad suggesting Bush's opposition to a hate crimes bill means he's "killed" James Byrd "all over again," but have pounced on ads by little known groups which dare to criticize Al Gore. To view The Media Reality Check as an Adobe Acrobat PDF file as posted by the MRC's Kristina Sewell and Andy Szul, go to:

To view the NAACP ad as played and evaluated by FNC, go to:

Tim Graham couldn't fit all the bias into the one-page fax, so item #2 below contains a CyberAlert Bonus of what he had to cut out.

The pull-out quote in the fax featured an exchange on Friday's The Early Show on CBS between Bryant Gumbel and Al Gore in which Gumbel falsely identified the ad as being produced by the "GOP," as if either the Bush campaign or an official Republican committee were behind it:

Bryant Gumbel: "Speaking of attacks, I don't know if you've seen it or not, but on behalf of Governor Bush, the GOP has taken to running the infamous Daisy commercial of Goldwater days and substituting the language and using you, and suggesting that your dealings with China have threatened national security. What's your reaction to that?"
Al Gore: "Well, I have no idea what they're talking about. It's another personal attack."

Now the text of the October 27 Media Reality Check:

Networks Talk Ads, But Ignore the NAACP's
ABC, CBS, NBC Air NARAL Ad for Gore; ABC, CBS Hit Ads Against Gore on Sharpton, Chinagate

The NAACP ad suggesting George W. Bush "killed" James Byrd "all over again" over a Texas "hate crimes" bill is still being ignored by ABC, CBS, NBC, and CNN's newscasts. But the same networks have shown interest in other liberal and conservative ads.

Last night, ABC, CBS, and NBC uncritically aired pieces of an ad from the National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League (NARAL). As NBC's Claire Shipman explained, "pro-choice organizations are spending big money for ads like these make the case that a vote for Nader could mean the end of a woman's right to choose." On Wednesday night's NewsStand on CNN, anchor Greta Van Susteren showed the NARAL ad in its entirety, free of charge.

ABC's Aaron Brown reported an entire story on ad campaigns, showing brief clips of NARAL's ad, plus ads made by the NRA and Handgun Control Incorporated. While he skipped the NAACP ad, he did find time to question an anti-Gore ad from a group called Americans Against Hate. Immediately after clips of the gun group ads, Brown intoned: "Harsher still, this ad tying Gore to controversial black activist Al Sharpton, who the ad says praised Adolf Hitler."

This morning, TV stars had a new anti-Gore ad to question: an ad saying "Vote Republican" that cheesily reproduces the 1964 "Daisy" ad implying Barry Goldwater would start a nuclear war. On CBS, Bryant Gumbel asked for Al Gore's reaction to that ad, but not the NAACP's ad.

On ABC's Good Morning America, anchor Antonio Mora began by noting "The Bush campaign is crying foul over a series of taped anti-Bush telephone messages the Michigan Democratic Party is playing to state residents. One call is from actor Ed Asner. In another, a caller who identifies herself as Ann Friday of Dallas appears to blame Bush for her husband's death in a nursing home." ABC played this audio clip: "He could be alive today if it weren't for the neglect he experienced. When George W. Bush ran for governor, he promised to improve the quality of life for nursing home residents. But Governor Bush broke that promise." Mora asserted: "The Bush campaign claims Bush has actually strengthened quality regulations for Texas nursing homes and it denies a claim in the Democrats' phone message that complaints about the nursing homes have doubled."

Mora added: "A different example of nastiness is coming from a mysterious group that has produced a new TV ad that suggests Gore could draw the U.S. into nuclear war. The ad mimics Lyndon Johnson's infamous 'Daisy' commercial and accused the Democrat of endangering the U.S. by giving nuclear secrets to China. At the end of the ad, a nuclear explosion is shown, followed by the words 'Vote Republican.' It's not known who put the money up for the ad."

Why the rush to this mysterious ad? An Associated Press story this morning began: "The Gore campaign said a new Republican attack advertisement modeled after the infamous 'Daisy' a 'desperate tactic' by conservatives to help George W. Bush." While the AP promoted the "Daisy" ad story today as "top news," they have yet to report on the NAACP ad.

END Reprint of Media Reality Check


CyberAlert Bonus: Additional analysis of the "Daisy" ad which the MRC's Tim Graham couldn't fit into the fax report: The Associated Press dismissed as "unproven" the charge that China "dumped money into the 1996 campaign"; Kathleen Hall Jamieson, apparently serious, told the New York Times: "It lacks the subtlety of the original ad."

-- AP's report this morning clearly suggested that allegations of China's acquisition of nuclear secrets and China's pumping of contributions into the 1996 campaign are "unproven":
"The new ad accuses President Clinton and Vice President Al Gore of giving away nuclear technology to China in exchange for campaign contributions. Like the original spot, it shows a little girl plucking petals from a daisy. 'Red China was given access and sold vital technology that will give China the ability to threaten our homes with long-range nuclear warheads,' an announcer says. Both ads end with a countdown to a nuclear blast. The newest ad repeats allegations by Republicans, though unproven, that China stole nuclear secrets from the United States and dumped money into the 1996 elections."

Perhaps the AP should re-read the 700 pages of the Cox Report, a bipartisan panel who found plenty of Chinese espionage on the Clinton-Gore watch.

-- The New York Times also reported the "Daisy" story this morning under the charged headline: "Infamous Political Commercial Is Turned on Gore." Like the other outlets, the Times has so far ignored the NAACP "Bush Dragged Him to Death Again" ad. Reporter Leslie Wayne explored the little-known entity behind the ad:
"A Texas-based nonprofit organization, Aretino Industries, paid for the new commercial, which will run in several closely contested states, including Ohio, Michigan, Missouri and Pennsylvania.
"Carey Cramer, a spokesman for the organization, in McAllen, Tex., declined to identify any of its members or the source of its money. 'These are people with real life jobs and they don't want to lose their jobs,' said Mr. Cramer, who said the group was formed to produce political commercials in this campaign and to bring 'accountability' to politics.
"Mr. Cramer said the initial advertisement buy was for $60,000, which is considered small by current political standards. He said that the group has raised $500,000 to buy more time."

But the Wayne story didn't get amusing until University of Pennsylvania professor and liberal pundit Kathleen Hall Jamieson arrived: "'It's an ad that is so inflammatory that it gets free news access,' she said. 'This is a heavy-handed ad. It lacks the subtlety of the original ad, it is not factually accurate and, if anything, it risks that the press coverage over it will produce a backlash against the Bush campaign.'"

Yes, you read that correctly. She said "it lacks the subtlety of the original ad." What subtlety was that?

Tony Schwartz, the retired advertising executive who made the original "Daisy" advertisement, commented for the Times on this new version: "This troubles me. They are a bunch of thieves. It's a perversion of my ad." The Times didn't get any comment from PBS omnipresence Bill Moyers, another promoter of the original LBJ ad.


A breakthrough for the Media Research Center: Today we've made the comics page in Bruce Tinsley's "Mallard Fillmore" distributed by King Features. In today's comic, Al Gore on Air Force 2 says: "The Media Research Center compiled data showing that the media go easy on me when I make up 'facts' out of my head.
"Some people say it's because the media are 'liberal.' But I say it's just professional courtesy because I invented journalism."

To see the Mallard Fillmore comic, go to where Jewish World Review has posted all the strips from this week:
Scroll to the bottom to view the one citing the MRC.

Also, today's Washington Times and New York Post recounted the MRC's analysis of the saturation coverage of the RAND report while the same networks didn't find any news value in Gore's secret deal with Russia.

The New York Post "MediaWatch" column, "A Little Study, a Lot of Press," began:
"Have the network news shows found an October Surprise that will sink George W. Bush? Or are they building a suspiciously timed molehill into a non-existent mountain?
"Judging by the enthusiastic coverage on the TV news programs, a paper from the RAND Corporation think tank has pulled the rug out from under Bush's strongest claims to have reformed public education in Texas...."

To read the rest, go to:

For today's item in Greg Pierce's Washington Times "Inside Politics" column, go to: -- Brent Baker

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