u.s. news media lame oh wait that’s not news

Ugh. Just wanted to check in with English-language/U.S. coverage of the student uprisings that were happening in Mexico this weekend, so I went to my old source the Washington Post and searched “Mexico.”

The first thing that comes up is this crap. “Front-runner in Mexico’s presidential race pledges respect for democracy and plurality.” That is the headline.

I didn’t realize that the PRI owned the Washington Post (actually, the Associated Press) as well as Televisa, but it sure sounds like they’ve got the same bland-ass copywriter on their payroll.

Background: this candidate is the “front runner” because the Mexican media is heavily manipulated by politicians (and vice-versa), and also gangstas judging by the journalist homicide rate. (Because there are homicide statistics for journalists here.) When characterizing the persecution of journalists and hampering of free speech in Mexico, Freedom House actually uses the term “systematic impunity.” Apparently this news is not as important as the story about a politician who, quote, pledges to respect democracy and plurality.

Anyway, since there seems to be not that much reporting on the student marches that happened this weekend in Mexico, I will briefly summarize. Around 40 thousand “mostly young,” as AP says, college students marched through the city Friday and again Saturday to demonstrate what they see as obvious falseness in media claims that he is the “front runner.” There were offshoot marches in cities around the country, and even in other countries (including a group of 40 in NYC). This was after he was jeered by hundreds a week earlier when giving an obligatory interview to the Ibero University’s radio station.

I get that these kids are fresas, but AP doesn’t even make it to that level. What we have here is a very clear example of syndicated journalism eating its own barf, and then the Washington Post goes and republishes it.

Seriously, it makes sense that a wire service like AP would get stories from the big local media conglomerate, but why bother running the story if they aren’t even going to fact check it? Or reality check it?

Here, of course, the L.A. Times has a more realistic take.


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