Saturday, August 21, 2004

Not News, Again 

Glen Hiller, 35, doesn't get it. He expresses shock that a Bush rally would be filled with people who support Bush, and more shock that he'd be asked to leave for heckling -- when in fact we used to kick people out of the Boston Museum of Science for heckling our lightning shows, too.

Then, to top it all off, he thinks he was fired because of his politics.

But was he? A quick look at the backstory puts this into perspective: Hiller, a graphic designer working for "an advertising and design company," was at the rally as a guest of a client. An adman's job depends on making clients happy. If one of those clients takes you to a public event, and you embarass them by getting kicked out of that event -- why, you failed at your job, demonstrated crass insensitivity to the very people whose bill-paying keeps your company solvent. Wouldn't you expect to get fired?

Hiller's not the only idot here; CNN doesn't get it either. As we've seen in the past, they have a knack for spinning facts like this to make them seem like news. (At least they're transparent about it, so we can make fun of them.) Here, they clearly report this as news because it was a Bush rally, not, say, a Tony Orlando and Dawn concert in Vegas, at which Hiller did the dirty deed -- this should be so obvious as to need no mention, really.

Heckling at a rally isn't news. Getting kicked out of a rally for being disruptive isn't news. Getting fired for offending a client not only isn't news, it isn't even unexpected -- that's the way the adworld works, folks. In fact, it isn't even news when a guy claims that he was fired because of something Bush-related, when the logic is as tenuous as this is -- it's a cry for psychiatry, or perhaps for a course in basic logic.

Net result: a headline that says "Man fired for heckling Bush." In fact, the first paragraph makes plain that he was fired for "offending a client who provided tickets to the event." With that headline, though, we are clearly and pre-emptively meant to believe that Hiller is somehow a victim of Bush&co, which is patently silly. Boos and hisses to CNN for providing fodder to the Moore-minded. (Kudos, though, for the excuse to rant again -- it's been a while, eh?)

posted by boyhowdy | 9:17 PM |

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