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Wednesday, February 22, 2012
Noel Sheppard Has A Silly Freakout Over 'Obama Bump'
Topic: NewsBusters

On top of his strict adherence to headline cliches and his global warming denialism, NewsBusters' Noel Sheppard has been responsible for some of NewsBusters' stupidest freakouts, like comparing Al Sharpton to Jefferson Davis and comparing the head of the EPA to Hitler and Khomeini.

Sheppard went on another dumb freakout in a Feb. 18 post, bizarrely upset that singer Roberta Flack wanted to "Obama bump" CNN hosts Soledad O'Brien and Piers Morgan. Sheppard huffed: "As if the President and the First Lady originated this practice."

We'll let Mediaite handle the response:

Let me get this straight: R&B legend Roberta Flack is wrapping up a segment of remembrances at Whitney Houston’s funeral, offers Soledad O’Brien a pound, rather than a handshake, and Ms. O’Brien is supposed to do what? Spit on Roberta Flack because she called it an Obama Bump? Perhaps launch into negotiations? “I will gladly accept your departing gesture, provided you re-moniker it in a less partisan fashion.”


Posting a flimsy blog item isn’t, itself, a high crime, but allowing partisan bitterness to intrude needlessly into a solemn occasion is shameful. Newsbusters should have given it a rest today.

As Mediaite also points out, the reason the fist-bump became associated with Obama in the first place is because of the MRC's favorite channel, Fox News, which accused Obama of engaging in a "terrorist fist jab."

A couple days later, Sheppard had a new post in which he recounts O'Brien's response to his silly post, and he gets huffy again:

@PoliticalPAW followed, "Granting you the ignorance plea, if heard, would you then have declined the 'Obama bump' offer?"

O'Brien replied, "i would have said: the fist bump is bipartisan. Which it is!"

Yes it is, but not when someone decides to name it after a president.

Did O'Brien truly not hear Flack say "Obama bump?"

I guess we'll have to take her word for it, but this goes to the gotcha game that media members like O'Brien play all the time, especially with Republicans.

If one of the GOP candidates made a similar error on live television due to not hearing what someone actually said, would they be able to so easily brush it off?

Consider that at the same time O'Brien was making her little gaffe which she now claims was an auditory mistake, media members were cherry-picking a 41 minute speech Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum gave earlier that morning in order to dishonestly accuse him of impugning Barack Obama's religious faith.

Santorum spent much of his Sunday trying to get numerous press members to better understand the full context of what he said but hasn't been able to change many minds for this false narrative continued Monday.

So why are America's media allowed to say I'm sorry, I mis-heard my guest, but the politicians they cover - I mean the Republican politicians they cover! - are held to the impossible standard of not being able to get their words accurately reported even when videotape supports their position?

Maybe that's something O'Brien should consider the next time she plays gotcha with one of her conservative guests.

So fist-bumps are no longer bipartisan because some entertainer -- not a news person -- related it to a politician? And Sheppard finds a way to steer this non-controversy to the tired MRC hobby horse of liberal bias?

This is the kind of "media analysis" that makes people not take NewsBusters seriously. Fortunately for our entertainment value, NewsBusters appears not to have realized this yet.

Oh, and Sheppard completely failed to mention Mediaite's deconstruction of his petty little attack. 

Posted by Terry K. at 12:42 PM EST

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