Insight magazine’s entry for The Colbert Report Journalism award

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In the type of reponse Stephen Colbert’s Colbert Report persona would admiringly refer to as truthy, Insight magazine stood by it’s claim that Senator Barack Obama is hiding his past as a fundamentalist Muslim, with the implication that he might even be a type of Manchurian Candidate.

Last week, in an article titled, Hillary’s team has questions about Obama’s Muslim background, Insight magazine performed its usual role of carrying water for its Moonie masters by running an article claiming that Senator Barack Obama was educated in an Islamic madrassa school while he lived in Indonesia as a child. The article claimed that the source of the information was Hillary Clinton’s newly announced Presidential campaign. The well-designed piece of journalism had the expected effect on its intended audience: those stalwart True Believers who find no problem in accepting the premise that the Clinton camp would proudly announce such transparently sleazy tactics to a magazine which is a charter member of the Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy and guaranteed to expose their role in spreading such underhanded lies the truth.

Of course, those godless atheists with their critical thinking reacted by laughing at what they referred to as: the inanity of the attempted double-target sliming. They ordered their radical left-wing house organ, CNN, to do what they call actual journalism, sending a correspondent familiar with the madrassas in Afghanistan and Pakistan to Jakarta, Indonesia in order to investigate Basuki School which Obama attended as a child in the late 1960s. According to Senior International Correspondent John Vause:

I came here to Barack Obama’s elementary school in Jakarta looking for what some are calling an Islamic madrassa … like the ones that teach hate and violence in Pakistan and Afghanistan, Vause said on the Situation Room Monday. I’ve been to those madrassas in Pakistan … this school is nothing like that.

As if we’d trust anyone who’s ever been in a madrassa! In an article in the New York Post — a Murdoch-owned outlet usually willing to take the appropriate joy in smears of prominent Dems, they actually spoke to the Clinton camp and allowed them to deny that they had any responsibility for the claim, while Obama’s campaign forcefully stated that he did not believe that Hillary or her staff were in any way responsible. Of course Obama’s people would say that about Hillary — look what happened to Vince Foster when he was about to cross her!

Demonstrating that they have no use for those fact things which liberals are always blabbering about, Insight‘s unsigned article refers to CNN’s pursuit of the truth behind the story by pointing out that, The Washington Post’s Howard Kurtz and now CNN are doing everything possible to assault and undermine Insight’s credibility. Isn’t it obvious: a correction of facts is actually an attack. Next thing you know, they’ll have those traitors at Media Matters piling on, too.

Then they state who was really to blame for the contention that Obama attended a madrassa: it was Hillary’s campaign that said it. They were just being good journalists and reporting what an unnamed anonymous source alleged Ms. Clinton’s staff were trying to prove about a possible angle for a potential smear campaign sometime later in the year. Yessirree! That’s some fine journalism, guaranteed to be 100% fact-free!

After telling us that their mission is to provide our readers with credible, reliable, cutting-edge information on what is really happening behind the scenes in the corridors of power, they then fill us in on some of the amazing scoops and cutting-edge stories this magazine is proud of:

We were one of the first to report tension between President Bush and his father, the tremendous resentment by the GOP leadership against the White House, conservative threats to stay home during the elections, fights over strategy, and the resignations of key White House officials over the Republicans’ loss of Congress.

Gosh, we’d better notify the Pulitzer Prize Committee! After all, it’s not every paper that can produce great reporting about feelings, especially when we’re talking about the feelings of entire segments of the voting public or unspecified groups of politicians. Why getting those kinds of stories and remaining 100% fact-free is no mean feat.

Adding another layer of difficulty to their task is that they are operating with what they describe as a limited budget. Although, as part of a news operation which has been bleeding red ink since its launch in 1982, surviving only by regular infusions of cash totaling more than US$3 billion from Rev. Moon’s pockets, I’m not sure why their budget is so limited.Still, it must be really tight because not only are they not able to send correspondents to places like Jakarta to check out every fact in a story, they seem unable to afford even the price of a phone call to either Senator Clinton or Senator Obama. If that’s too expensive, then the cost of a taxi from their offices to the US Capitol 4.1 miles away is definitely too expensive. But even though they obviously can’t afford to verify the story themselves, they say

CNN’s claim that Obama attended a multi-confessional, secular public school needs verification by other news outlets—such as FOX News—who will look the facts straight on, without a vested ideological interest in downplaying Obama’s Muslim heritage.

That sentence alone guarantees this article a nomination for the Pulitzer Prize and not in the humor category this time. But Insight‘s listing of the tough questions that need to be asked of Senator Obama are going to leave the writers for The Colbert Report and The Onion in despair over ever coming up with anything truthier:

If he was rai
sed in a secular household (as he claims), why does he have—or retain—Muslim names, Barack and Hussein? Were his father and stepfather as secular as he says? What is the exact nature of Obama’s current religious affiliation and what are the beliefs and teachings of his current church in Chicago, the Trinity United Church of Christ? Does he adhere to these teachings or is he a Sunday bench warmer only?

I’m glad someone is asking those tough questions! With their cutting-edge reporting on emotions, I’m sure they could channel Obama’s beliefs without having to strain their budget with a phone call. They’d just need a reporter who can divine someone’s character instantaneously, without words or facts… I’ve got it! President Bush could see into Russia’s President Putin’s soul, so he’d make an ideal reporter. Plus with all that free time he has in-between vacations and Cheney telling him what to decide, I see a future career for the soon-to-be ex-President.

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