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Ken Aven

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Blogs by Ken Aven

The Narrative In Beijing & Denver
8/25/2008 12:03:14 PM

NBC paid billions for the Olympics. They would be damned if anything got in their way of scoring high ratings and turning as many bucks as possible. The first week found the Michael Phelps journey falling into their laps. Coupled with the week and a half battle between America's gymnastic sweethearts and the allegedly underage Chinese tumblers, the Olympics took on a life of its own. Night after night the screen was filled with swimming, bikini clad American volleyballers, and high flying gymnasts. Although not quite as exciting to American audiences (at least to NBC's thinking), the network did get a second week boost through the incredible running of the charasmatic Jamaican, Usain Bolt.

As long as their main properties were scoring gold, NBC's incoming narrative did not need to be altered. Little was mentioned on the prime time telecasts about the softball team losing to Japan, the lack of medals among America's boxers (usually a big draw), and the ongoing problems with China's government over human rights demonstrations and altering of the Opening Ceremonies. Of course, a bit of this and a bit of that was mentioned and shown, but the lion's share of coverage was already predetermined by the network executives.

We now fast forward to the next big event, this week's Democratic National Convention in Denver. Leading up to the first night's telecast, the cable pundits are all ablaze about the possibility of some of Hillary's ardent supporters holding out on Barack Obama. Interviews with holdout delegates are filling the screen. "Obama dissed us. He did not reach out to us. I will not vote for him."

So the narrative is already in place. Obama must genuflect toward Hillary and her backers or lose the election. This is one of the reasons why our last blog entry entreated Obama to pick Hillary to be his VP choice. If he could fully make up with this large group, the party would have been united before even setting foot in Denver, and all the energy would have been focused on John McCain.

Instead, Obama, for reasons he only knows, chose Joe Biden. Biden, if the Dems win, will be a great Vice-President and should be a great candidate. But Obama missed the point. Hillary came oh-so-close to the nomination and he really had little choice but to choose her as his running mate. Obviously, most of the Clinton folk do not want to lose abortion rights, curtail gay rights, expand medical coverage for most Americans, and end the war in Iraq. For those reasons and others, they will almost all come back in the fold.

But by playing this game with their feelings, Obama has fed into the week's narrative. The broadcasters and reporters are now primed to play the Obama-Clinton rift to its fullest. Never mind, that by week's end the conflict will have settled down. Obama now will have to kiss up to the Clintonites while trying to stare down his up and coming Republican challenger. His need for a single purpose at the Denver convention is up in smoke. Instead of all news items being about the opposition, all we are getting are reports about "behind-the-scenes" negotiations with Hillary.

We will mention this one more time. Obama, this election is not about you. It is about the millions who want "change" and want it now. By being stubborn and refusing to fully embrace what should be his base, he continues to delay the full acceptance of his nomination and is losing the "wow" factor day after day. Time is running out. Biden was good. Hillary would have been better.

http://inlandechoes.blogspot.com


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More Blogs by Ken Aven
• A Mighty Wind - Monday, November 17, 2008
• Comparisons - Tuesday, November 11, 2008
• It's A Beautiful Day - Thursday, November 06, 2008
• Wednesday Morning - Friday, October 31, 2008
• A Baseball Interlude - Tuesday, October 28, 2008
• Sarah Ambitious - Friday, October 24, 2008
• Food Stamps & Fried Chicken - Sunday, October 19, 2008
• Joe Six-Pack; Joe the Plumber; Joe ... - Thursday, October 16, 2008
• State Of The Race - Sunday, October 12, 2008
• Out Of Ideas - Wednesday, October 08, 2008
• Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid - Saturday, October 04, 2008
• CNN's Targeted Debate Coverage - Tuesday, September 30, 2008
• Decide Already - Saturday, September 27, 2008
• A Pox On All Houses - Tuesday, September 23, 2008
• McCain Quits - Friday, September 19, 2008
• The Mugging Of John McCain - Tuesday, September 16, 2008
• A Time For Truth - Saturday, September 13, 2008
• Barack Huxtable vs. John McCain Brady - Tuesday, September 09, 2008
• The American Family - Friday, September 05, 2008
• Juno For (Vice) President - Tuesday, September 02, 2008
• We Came To Praise Obama and ... Palin? - Saturday, August 30, 2008
• Thank The Clintons - Wednesday, August 27, 2008
•  The Narrative In Beijing & Denver - Monday, August 25, 2008  

• Give Us Hillary - Wednesday, August 20, 2008
• McCain Wins - Sunday, August 17, 2008
• If It's Tuesday It Must Be Sydney, Athens, Beijing... - Thursday, August 14, 2008
• Olympic Anxiety - Monday, August 11, 2008
• Hawaii Obama-O! - Wednesday, August 06, 2008
• COMEBACKS - Sunday, August 03, 2008
• 5.4 - Wednesday, July 30, 2008
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