Obama Oregon rally was preceded by free concert from Portland band The Decemberists
Some forms of MSM deception are so gross you have to wonder why they'd put their reputations on the line. I guess they're playing a numbers game, assuming that they'll be able to fool many more people than learn the truth.
Today's egregious example involves the big Obama rally in Portland, Oregon on May 18 which supposedly somewhere around 75,000 people attended. What many or most news sources forgot to tell you was that his appearance was preceded by a free, 45-minute concert from the local indy band The Decemberists; for comparison purposes their most-viewed videos on Youtube have 407,110; 177,447; and 141,218 views. And, here's a video from the event itself: link.
Details on this here and here:
If you want to do something about this, search for news reports on the rally that didn't mention who was the opening act. Then, contact their public editors or just call up the reporter directly and ask them why they didn't reveal that material fact. The same can be done with bloggers, simply by leaving a comment.
UPDATE: To make it clearer, I'm not suggesting that everyone was there because of the band. I'm suggesting that their appearance - as well as the fact that it was a sunny day - played a role. And, the MSM as well as others who discussed the rally should have disclosed that their apperance did play a role.
IT'S GETTING CROWDED UNDER THE BUS UPDATE: The Decembrists join Obama's grandmother, Reverend Wright, and a host of others under the bus as "liberals" are now trying to claim that the band could only, in the words of one of those commenting, draw a crowd of 750. For an example, let's turn to paid hack Matt Yglesias (matthewyglesias.theatlantic.com/archives/2008/05/jim_geraghtys_revenge_song.php):
By now you've heard all about Barack Obama's radical pastor and secret Allah-worship, but Jim Geraghty's got the scoop about Obama's secret association with Portland-based indie rock bands. Yes, that's right, the Decemberists played Obama's 75,000 person rally. Quoth Geraghty, "I'm sure Obama would draw a big crowd either way, but wasn't that worth mentioning in the coverage?" Now Jason Linkins argues that "as the Decemberists are a modestly successful indie outfit, more apt to perform at venues such as the 1,200-person capacity 9:30 Club, it would be more accurate to suggest that the promise of an Obama rally is a great inducement to come see the Decemberists, rather than the reverse." Linkins misses the point, of course, that the Decemberists are popular enough to often play the 9:30 Club on consecutive nights so you can see that Obamamania's all hype.
Now, let's roll back the clock to October 11, 2006 (matthewyglesias.theatlantic.com/archives/2006/10/when_the_war_came.php):
Fans of the Decemberists will by no means be disappointed by their new offering The Crane Wife. Non-fans, on the other hand, probably won't find anything to turn their views around. For my part, I'm a fan. It's schtick, but it's good schtick.
That's followed by 18 comments from various kinds of fans. Now, obviously, MattY doesn't have much influence, but someone like Atrios does get a lot of traffic. And, in fact, almost 4800 views of their most popular video are due to him, who promoted them at these links:
So, once again, they only played a minor part in the turnout, but they did play a part and it should have been mentioned.