So far as I know, this is wholly without precedent. For Sinclair Broadcast Group, whose stations penetrate almost 25% of the nation's homes, to demand that its stations preempt their programming in order to run a Moonie-made, SwiftVet inspired attack piece on John Kerry right before the election is a stunning foray into partisanship, particularly for such a powerful member of the "liberal media" (and a big fuck you to the conservatives who aren't vocally shitting their pants over such obvious media bias). After all, it was Sinclair who recently made news for refusing to air the Nightline special that recited the names of solders killed in Iraq. And it's Sinclair executives who, during the 2004 political cycle, have made $68,000 in political contributions, 97% of them to Republicans. And in that figure lies the Kerry campaign's great opportunity:
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So, we all agree this is outrageous, right? But Xan at Corrente looks at it a little differently:
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First off, given the topic, I don't think viewership is going to be all that great. People did the great Vietnam Rehashing back during the Swiftie Liars thing and those who could be persuaded to that view already were.
Second, look at the qualifications of the filmmaker here. I will defer to John Gorenfeld, expert in all things Moonie, if I'm wrong, but my bet is that this film will be so godawful as to be laughable. So over-the-top that it will boost Kerry votes in the areas where it's seen rather than the reverse Sinclair is counting on.
Thirdly--hey, remember the rules. We are lefties, we are in favor of free speech. The solution to bad speech is more speech. We don't cut off that with which we disagree, we outshout it.
Now is the time to deploy some of that Soros money. Find a competing station in every market Sinclair operates in and buy the time to run Going Upriver* in prime time as close to Oct. 30 as can be arranged.
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What we should do with the Soros money (sorry for spending your shit, George) is put out ads highlighting the Sinclair move and tie it to the Bush administration better than we did with the Swift Boat Liars.