Wednesday, August 1, 2007

Obama-mania at the BBC

What is it with the BBC and Barack Obama? (Okay, that's a rhetorical question, and I'll answer it shortly). I posted earlier on Obama's fantastical claim that he would invade Pakistan to attack al-Qaeda terrorists, which was itself a ludicrous over-reaction to the criticism he's been getting for saying that he would be happy to meet with any tyrant or leader of a terror-sponsoring state who rolls out the red carpet for him.

Tonight the BBC has decided that Obama's desperate attempt at damage control is currently the most important news story in the world, making it the lead item on their worldwide news home page. Think about this for a moment: the BBC thinks that the most important story in the world tonight is what a man who almost certainly won't win the Democratic nomination, let alone the presidential election, might do if he were elected President – and he wouldn't be able to do much of anything before 2009.

In fairness to the BBC, you can imagine their confusion: they want Barack to win, because, although they're largely ignorant of American politics, and about what American people outside of Manhattan think, a) he's a Democrat, and b) he's got dark skin, which in and of itself is a Good Thing, and trumps even Hillary's gender (oh, and he also believes in 'hope', which presumably the other candidates don't). They don't understand that this story makes him look like an even bigger idiot than he did last week; all they can see is that it's a story about Barack Obama, so they feel they should run with it.

Of course, this isn't to say that the BBC won't throw their weight behind Hillary if and when she secures the nomination – just like all the good defeated Democrat candidates, the Beeb will support whichever Democrat is chosen, and will work tirelessly for their election.

In case you think I overstate the Beeb's bias towards Obama, and the Democrats in general, I tried a quick, and admittedly unscientific test, searching the BBC's website for stories about Obama, Hillary, Rudy Giuliani and Mitt Romney. Hillary came out way ahead, with 92 pages, not surprising considering how long she's been around. But here's the interesting thing: Obama, despite having been virtually unknown outside Illinois until a few months ago, returned 23 pages of results; Giuliani, despite having been mayor of New York for eight years, including during the aftermath of 9/11, returned 20 pages. Romney, who has a better chance of securing the Republican nomination than Obama does the Democrat nomination, returned just 10 pages.

No bias there then.

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