01 October 2008
Much has been made recently, by right-leaning writers, on the treatment of Gov. Palin by the media. I for one, didn't find it absolutely out of bounds that Charlie Gibson looked at her over the top of his glasses (I just thought he looked at little ridiculous). And the demands by the Atlantic that she submit amniotic fluid for testing to prove that Trig is her baby just helped the McCain campaign by being so obviously in the tank for Obama. But the National Review article linked here addresses a far more serious and subtle type of potential partisanship in media coverage of the campaign. When I was in ROTC and OBC, training to be a military officer, one of the principles of conduct hammered into my head was to 'avoid the semblance of misconduct.' We were taught that appearance does matter. It matters that an officer present him/herself in such a way that it would not be likely that an outside observer would assume that one's behavior is dishonorable. Ms. Ifill may very well be able to conduct herself as a neutral moderator, despite her personal preferences. But, her open promotion over the previous months of Sen. Obama and his campaign, present the appearance of partisanship. Is is any wonder that many observers assume that she will engage in misconduct?