February 20, 2007

Strange coincidence...

Dafydd has an interesting post on how most major papers phrased the recent activities in the Senate as "Republicans closing off debate on the war." In fact the Democrats were trying to end debate—that's what "cloture" means—and force a vote. (That's one lie, but also the papers have covered up the fact that there is opportunity to debate the war with every bill that comes up, and in fact war debate has been preempting almost all the other business of the Senate!)

...But if that is the case -- where did this amazing coincidence of terminology come from? The only other explanation that occurs to me is that editors at the other newspapers simply copied what the New York Times wrote, that the Republicans had "rejected an effort to force debate" on the Iraq war. I suspect they originally wrote their articles straight; but when they saw that artful bit of misdiction in "America's newspaper of record," the lower-tier editorial boards gushed, "What a great way to put it! Let's us do that as well."

I can't think of any other way that such a contorted and misleading phrasing, never before used, could appear on the same day in a half dozen major newspapers and probably dozens of minor ones....
Posted by John Weidner at February 20, 2007 8:27 AM
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