WHAT BAD POLITICS LOOKS LIKE: The governor’s racism keeps getting worse!


Part 3—The candidate’s fourth button:
Friend, are you intrigued by the science of journalistic misstatement?

Are you interested in the science of false and misleading journalistic claims and portrayals? In the science of cherry-picked facts? In the science of bogus journalistic portrayals designed to serve partisan ends?

If you’re interested in that science, the case of the Alabama satellite DMV closings provides a fantastic case study. Warning to liberals and progressives:

In this particular case, the bogus statements and portrayals have largely been performed by journalists within our own liberal tribe!

As such, these bogus presentations create a fascinating case study of horrible pseudo-liberal journalism. But we also think they constitute a case of very bad liberal politics.

If you’re interested in this science, let’s state a basic premise. When a pleasing tribal claim gets started, there will be a tendency for journalists to embellish, misstate and distort the facts which drive the pleasing claim.

Sometimes deliberately, sometimes not, journalists will tend to misstate basic facts to make an alleged offense worse. Within the literature, this widely observed tendency is known as “The candidate’s fourth button,” for reasons we’ll note below.

That said, let’s return to the case of the satellite DMV closings. Consider an account of this matter which appeared last Saturday in The Hill, a prestigious insider D.C. daily which “has the largest circulation of any Capitol Hill publication.”

A journalist sent us this account, wondering if there was anything to it. Here’s how the news report started:
FERRIS (10/17/15): Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton on Saturday accused Alabama lawmakers of advancing “discriminatory” laws to roll back voting rights, as she looks to shore up support with black voters.

In her first visit to Alabama as a presidential candidate, Clinton elevated her call for voting rights as she condemned the state’s decision last week to close 31 driver’s license offices. Nearly all of the offices were in predominantly black neighborhoods.

She urged Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley and his Republican-controlled legislature to keep the offices open, and “not just for one day a month."
Say what? It’s certainly true that Alabama closed 31 satellite offices. That said, is the highlighted statement true?

“Nearly all of the offices were in predominantly black neighborhoods?” That sounded bad—extremely bad. The governor’s racism was growing!

Governor Bentley’s racism was growing—but was that claim actually true? We had seen no primary source which made any such claim.

Incomparably, we emailed an editor at The Hill, scientifically seeking a source for the claim. We received a link to this site, where we encountered the first four paragraphs from a TPM report:
SNEED (10/1/15): What happens when a state with a tough voter ID law suddenly makes it much harder for minorities to get driver's licenses? We are about to find out in Alabama.

Facing a budget crisis, Alabama has shuttered 31 driver’s license offices, many of them in counties with a high proportion of black residents. Coming after the state recently put into effect a tougher voter ID law, the closures will cut off access—particularly for minorities—to one of the few types of IDs accepted.

According to a tally by AL.com columnist John Archibald, eight of the 10 Alabama counties with the highest percentage of non-white registered voters saw their driver’s license offices closed.

“Every single county in which blacks make up more than 75 percent of registered voters will see their driver license office closed. Every one,” Archibald wrote.
According to the TPM report, Bama had “suddenly made it much harder for minorities to get driver's licenses.” The journalist cited several accurate statements from the John Archibald column which launched a thousand scripts. The statement which came closest to the one in The Hill was this:

“Alabama has shuttered 31 driver’s license offices, many of them in counties with a high proportion of black residents.”

That statement included two imprecise terms—“many” and “high proportion.” A journalist who wanted to speak a bit more precisely could have made this statement:

“Alabama has shuttered 31 driver’s license offices, eight of them in counties with a majority of black residents.”

That would have been a more precise statement. But nothing in the TPM report justifies The Hill’s paraphrase, in which “nearly all” the 31 offices were located “in predominantly black neighborhoods.”

Rather plainly, that statement is false. But dear lord, it feels so good!

As lovers of science, let’s review the road we took to that statement:

First, Archibald penned a column which included a selective collection of facts. He focused on office closings in a set of eight counties, counties which are majority black and are generally very small.

He didn’t detail the office closings in the other 23 counties. Many of those counties are larger, and are more heavily white than Alabama as a whole.

Archibald skipped something else. He didn’t mention the overall population of the 30 affected counties, or of the 28 counties which lost their only office. In each case, the overall population of the affected counties is a close match for the population of the state as a whole.

For our money, Archibald’s presentation was unwisely selective. At TPM, the selective presentation continued. It was helped along by a murky statement about “many” of the affected counties—and it featured a stirring statement which only mentioned the inconvenience to “minorities.”

No inconvenienced whites need apply!

TPM made no attempt to place Archibald’s statements in a wider factual context. Two weeks later, along came The Hill, and a murky statement was “improved,” as the scientists say.

Sure enough! We went from “many” offices being shuttered “in counties with a high proportion of black residents” to a more sweeping claim—the claim that “nearly all” the shuttered offices were located “in predominantly black neighborhoods.”

That is a much more sweeping claim. We'd seen no one make it before.

Within the literature, this familiar “improvement” of basic facts is referenced in an unusual way. This familiar practice has long been referred to as “the candidate’s fourth button.”

Here’s why the experts do that:

In the fall of 1999, an earlier bunch of national journalists were conducting a propaganda campaign. As part of this campaign, they were pretending to be disturbed by every possible aspect of Candidate Gore’s deeply troubling wardrobe.

His boots, his suits, his polo shirts, the height at which he was hemming his pants—every aspect of the candidate’s wardrobe was said to show us how fake and “inauthentic” he was. The problem even extended to the number of buttons on his suit jackets:


What was supposed to be wrong with three-button suits? In a performance which was crazy even for him, Chris Matthews seemed to claim that Gore’s three buttons constituted a smarmy signal to female voters, like the buttons sailors wear on the front of their pants.

Brian Williams advanced the same general theme concerning the candidate’s polo shirts. In February 2000, the repellent climber grew confused, complaining about the candidate’s troubling three-button sweaters.

Accidents happen when people like this go for the gold of Jack Welch.

In November 1999, one major pundit invented Gore’s fourth button. In a disgraceful performance on MSNBC’s Rivera Live, Arianna Huffington took out her needle and thread and sewed that button on:
HUFFINGTON (11/9/99): When you are talking about a consultant that you bring on to give opinions on how to dress and whether you’re an alpha male and how do you become a beta male—

Frankly, you know, what is fascinating is that the way he’s now dressing makes a lot of people feel disconnected from him. And there was this marvelous story in one of the New Hampshire papers saying, “Nobody here—nobody here in Hanover, New Hampshire, wears tan suits with blue shirts.” You know, it's just—

And buttons—all four buttons! You know, it's not just—it's just not the way most American males dress.
Gore had worn no four-button suits. Meanwhile, “It’s just not the way most American males dress?”

At the time, the pundit corps was saying and insinuating that the candidate wasn’t sufficiently masculine. After all, Al Gore hired a woman to teach him how to be a man! In line with this repellent theme, Arianna’s first statements in that passage referred to Naomi Wolf, who was relentlessly slimed all through the month of November.

(People are dead all over the world because Arianna did this. In fairness, she was still building her brand.)

Despite making a lot of people feel disconnected from him, the candidate went on to win the New Hampshire primary. But from that day to this, experts on American journalism refer to the familiar practice of “improving” accurate facts by a whimsical name. They call it “Gore’s fourth button.”

Our liberal world has been sewing fourth buttons with respect to these office closings. Once again, let’s review one specific chain of improvements:

John Archibald presented a selective set of facts in a local column. That said, he specifically cautioned against the assumption that the office closings were motivated by race.

One day later, a young scribe at TPM ignored those words of caution. She fashioned a rather murky claim about where “many” of the offices had been closed. She said the closings “suddenly made it much harder for minorities to get driver's licenses,” ignoring the much larger number of whites who were similarly inconvenienced.

Two weeks later, an even younger scribe at The Hill sewed on that fourth button. Readers were told that “nearly all” the office closings occurred “in predominantly black neighborhoods.”

Simply put, there is no source for that claim. Finally, we had a statement which was flatly false.

Let’s be fair! Aside from Archibald, each reporter who improved the facts is quite young. The TPM scribe graduated from GW in 2011. The reporter at The Hill graduated from Georgetown just last year.

Their editors are older, of course—but they seem to be oppressively absent, like Ingmar Bergman’s God. We’ll guess that Josh was off somewhere counting his barrels of cash.

At any rate, the governor’s racism has kept getting worse as we’ve played this familiar old game. Ironically, Archibald told the horrific Rachel Maddow this week that he now believes that the office closings didn’t stem from a racial motive.

We can’t tell you if he’s right. We can tell you what the overall data are, as opposed to the cherry-picked numbers which help us advance our tribal story.

Sewing that button can be good fun, but there’s one basic problem—the other side can see what we’re doing! This produces very bad politics, not that there’s any obvious sign that our leaders actually care.

Why do we say this is bad liberal politics? Tomorrow, we’ll finally start to explain. We’ll start with what happened in comments.

Tomorrow: It happened in comments

This is what The Crazy looks like: The pundits pounded the candidate’s wardrobe for months. At the end of November—“the month of Wolf”—Marc Fisher offered these pensées in his weekly column in the Washington Post’s Sunday magazine:
FISHER (11/28/99): [W]hen Al Gore sneaks around and spends $15,000 a month to hire an oddball like Naomi Wolf, a controversialist who campaigns against the tyranny of the beauty culture and then plasters soft-lit glossies of herself and her perfectly teased hair all over the Internet and on her book jackets, we have two choices: We can say Gore's a good man who's been duped by over-eager aides, or we can say this is a man who does not know himself, a man who is unknowable, unreadable and therefore not fit to be president.

A person who makes her living by writing pop philosophy about sex tells a man who would be president of the United States that he must be a different kind of man, that he must be more assertive, that he must wear a brown suit of a sort that is alien to virtually every American. And he says, “Okay.”

To call him unreadable is to be charitable.
There was no evidence that Naomi Wolf had told Gore what to wear. Two of her three “pop philosophy” books had been chosen by the New York Times as “Notable books of the year.”

The candidate’s one brown suit was not “of a sort that is alien to virtually every American.” This column, like barrels of work from this time, was well over the line into the realm of The Crazy.

The liberal world accepted all this for two years. As a result, people are dead all over the world—and your favorite liberal stars of the era are fat, well off, quite happy.

You can still see them on Our Own Channel. They’ll be speaking with other folk of their general ilk.


  1. "Let’s be fair! Aside from Archibald, each reporter who improved the facts is quite young. The TPM scribe graduated from GW in 2011. The reporter at The Hill graduated from Georgetown just last year.

    Their editors are older, of course—but they seem to be oppressively absent, like Ingmar Bergman’s God. We’ll guess that Josh was off somewhere counting his barrels of cash."

    We'll assume oligeanous, oily, old Somerby is jealous of both youth and success. To be fair.

    1. He is suggesting that more experience might prevent embellishment of facts (not in evidence).

      Your defensiveness on the topic of youth suggests you are jealous of Somerby's age and wisdom.

    2. Either that or I am as old as he is and recognize his disorder as one common among our Boomer cohort. And of course you know, by your comment, you are conceding his defensiveness on his lack of money.

    3. You are the one who talked about money.

    4. Chubby Affluent JoyfulOctober 21, 2015 at 1:57 PM

      Oh, I guess Somerby meant "Josh was off somehwere counting his barrels of hash." Or maybe it was "mash."

      I guess I am just too "fat, well off, quite happy" to recognize the obvious typographical error.

    5. I would just call you preoccupied with wealth and youth. No way to guess your weight on the internet.

    6. If you can't guess around here you have to let Bob do all the "critical thinking" for you. And that is, as a wise experienced gentleman once said, "lazy and dumb."

    7. Speaking of "fat, well off, and quite happy," what did Naomi Wolf do to justify the Gore campaign paying her $15 large a month? That teases a lot of hair and buys more barrels of soft-lit glossies than I can count.

      Surely in his long, detailed service as a combat correspondent during the War on Gore and the bitter ruins of its aftermath, Somerby has answered that question.

    8. What Do Our Trolls Say?October 21, 2015 at 4:55 PM

      Is Somerby *wrong* about the media??

      Our trolls will say only this: He's old... and jealous.

    9. Is Somerby old and jealous? If not, why is he the one constantly bringing it up age and income in a perjorative manner?

      Did those kids in the classrooms Bob taught suffer because he was "'youngish" throughout his alternantive service career?

    10. You see pejorative, I see explanatory.

    11. I liked the series on the brain eating worms better.

    12. Josh Marshall began, later than Somerby, with a one-man blog and in a few years turned it into something much more than that, and obviously quite profitable.

      Somerby, a pioneer in political blogging, began with a one-man blog and in 18 years managed to turn it into a one-man blog.

    13. That should be strong evidence that Somerby is not motivated by money.

      Josh Marshall sold out. Everyone who reads the liberal blogosphere knows that.

    14. People are dead all over the world because of people who think they knows what everyone knows.

    15. Right. Josh Marshall sold out. Wow.

      Reminds me of the folk music revival that flourished in Greenwich Village coffee houses in the early '60s. Every time one of them landed a record deal, the others left behind strumming their guitars for 10 people in the coffee house would quickly say they "sold out."

      And that included a guy by the name of Zimmerman.

    16. It wasn't his record deals that were the sell out. It was when he went electric and then found Jesus.

    17. Yep. Miles Davis heard the same crap when he made Bitches Brew.

  2. In 2000 when the press was lying about crap that hurt progressives i don't recall the conservatives giving a crap. End result, the conservative candidate won.

    Now it seems, if you're to believe somerby, the media are lying about an issue that could very well hurt the conservatives, Somerby thinks progressives should give a crap. I'm not sure why.

    Clinton has the right idea on this one, why fight it? Go with the lie, as she has been doing for the last month or so. Apparently, that's how you win elections.


    1. You are framing this in tribal terms. If you think more broadly about the needs of a democratic system, which depends on well educated voters, you will perhaps understand that when the press fails to do its job properly our society as a whole suffers.

      Clinton has the right idea on voting rights restrictions, including the law passed in Alabama in 2013. She has her facts wrong about why the motor vehicle offices were closed. Her heart is in the right place, which is why we can forgive her. The journalists are not in the business of advancing voting rights or getting politicians elected. Their job is to tell readers the truth, to the best of their ability.

      If all you want to do is win, there are a wide variety of ways you can cheat the system, but I don't want to know you. A corrupt system can be bent against your interests as easily as for you. Only a reasonably fair system will guarantee the rights of more people, including those without natural sources of power (such as wealth).

      I think a lot of the people who advocate adopting the corrupt methods of our opponents just enjoy cheating.

    2. 12:45, i'm framing it in Somerby terms. He doesn't talk about preserving a democratic system per se, he talks about progressives losing elections.

      Anyway, since you have such a distaste for dishonesty, i assume you will not be casting a vote for HRC. Right?


    3. A given: Progressives lose elections because we're tribal.

      A second given: Conservatives are equally as tribal as the progressives

      Conclusion: Conservatives cannot win elections.


      Hmm... a conundrum.

    4. Hillary is not a journalist. Neither is Somerby. Politicians and bloggers with their hearts in the right place can, and need, forgiveness.

    5. 12:59 PM claims according to Somerby's logic:

      [QUOTE]>>>Conclusion: Conservatives cannot win elections.


      Hmm... a conundrum.
      <<<[END QUOTE]

      Hardly a conundrum. Conservatives want to defend, or rather advance, the interests of the 0.1%. In a democratic republic that's a tough sell so their approach is to promote intra-class rivalries within the 95%. Progressives/liberals/lefties fall into a trap when they join in to play that same game rather than concentrating on promoting a sense of solidarity among those who make up the overwhelming majority.

    6. CMIKE. Wouldn't a sense of solidatiry among the "overwhelming majority" also be tribalism?

      Of course. Nice try though.

    7. Wouldn't a sense of solidatiry among the "overwhelming majority" also be tribalism?

      That would depend upon your starting point. You're right, once it is achieved it would still fall short of creating a universal sense of the brotherhood of all mankind but it sure would take you a long way towards reaching that destination and I can't imagine any alternative route to get there.

  3. "Incomparably, we emailed an editor at The Hill, scientifically seeking a source for the claim. We received a link to this site...."

    Incomparably Howler readers accepted this for seventeen long years. Bob Somerby studiously avoided mentioning Hillary Clinton's statements on this topic for six posts on the issue. Let's guess 'The Hill' e-mail may have had something else Bob Somerby avoided mentioning.

    1. musings on the mainstream "press corps" and the american discourse

      When did Hillary Clinton become a member of the mainstream press corps?

    2. For Howler purposes?

      At least since January 29, 2014 when Bob Somerby took to his keyboard to tell us not what our President said to his country, but what our country should have said he implied.

      Or maybe it was later, April 15, of the same year when
      Somerby wrote:

      "In January, President Obama hit the road in the wake of his State of the Union Address. In Wisconsin, he addressed a cheering crowd at a GE plant:

      OBAMA (1/30/14): Today, women make up half our workforce. They're making 77 cents for every dollar a man earns. That's wrong. Who said that? That's wrong. That's wrong.


      It's an embarrassment. So I mentioned on Tuesday, women deserve equal pay for equal work.

      (Cheers, applause)"

      Obama’s overall statement was misleading. The reaction by the audience is marked in the official transcript.

      We think Obama should be more clear about that statistic, but he’s hardly alone...."

    3. When did Obama become a member of the mainstream press corps?

    4. The day he wandered into the crosshairs of Blogger Somerby's seven year old War Against Maddow?

    5. Shed a tear for poor RachelOctober 21, 2015 at 4:57 PM

      Poor Maddow.

      What has she ever done that merits Somerby's attention?

      As far as a troll can tell, not a thing, nothing at all...

    6. Somerby told us what she did. She did not answer the question he posed to her in his blog.

      What has Maddow ever done Bob has not as a performer except become a minor celebrity and financial success?

    7. They don't even work in the same profession. Your comment makes no sense at all.

    8. By all available evidence, Bob doesn't seem to be working much in any profession at all.

    9. As is typical of people who have retired.

    10. Maddow and Bob are both performers.

  4. Any Howler/Hillary fans out there want to guess who first used the "R" bomb in this affair?

    Bob likes guessing. We'll also guess he likes comments even though he doesn't read yours.

  5. Will no one rid us of these noisome trolls?

    1. Noisome and stupid!

    2. You two professors hit that one out of the park.

      This instinctive trashing of The Others helps explain our lazy, self-defeating lack of political outreach

    3. Do you know what "noisome" means?

    4. Thus settling the question of whether zombies have a sense of humor.

  6. As long as Somerby is demandinmg accuracy, let's take a look at this statement:

    "A journalist who wanted to speak a bit more precisely could have made this statement:

    “Alabama has shuttered 31 driver’s license offices, eight of them in counties with a majority of black residents.”

    While Bob is technically accurate in the first part, he makes an error he should not have given the extensive time and effort he has put into the
    nine (count 'em - 9) post he hs done on the topic.

    Nine (that magic number again) of the offices were in counties with black majorities.

    Of course Bob is not a journalist. And his heart is in the right place.
    So if he missed one of the turtles on the fence post, it is not insitutional stupidity.

    1. Assume for a moment Somerby is out to make you waste your life- he's definitely achieving that.

    2. Thanks for another example of Howler readers laughing at the "clown car" next to them while Bozo Bob is behind the wheel of their ride.

    3. Dumbass Troll Sees Light?October 21, 2015 at 5:05 PM


      I haven't done the research myself, but just imagine if troll is correct!!! It's not 8 majority black counties, it's 9!!!!!!!

      That pretty much puts the lie to Somerby's claim that the press reporting has been misleading, huh?

      Oh, wait.

    4. Somerby is demanding accuracy, and by his own terms he's failing to provide it.

    5. No, Somerby isn't demanding accuracy, he's trying to show you, poor benighted troll, that your press is misleading you.

      Is it that you really can't see it, or do you intern for Maddow?

    6. Somerby's criticism was not of Maddow, but of a young woman ( a type frequently depicted as Clueless in Howler deprecatory terminology) who works for Talking Points Memo, and the woman's sin was she was "imprecise" not inaccurate. In demanding precision Bob was inaccurate.

      Is it really that you see so well where your head is located that you can also actually see the analysts?

    7. Yep folks.

      You've been told it was impacting black folks more.

      Somerby (and Drum, among few others) showed you that's not true.

      The Troll reaction?: "9, not 8! Gotcha, you awful Somerby!"

    8. Yes folks, They Can't Help It can't help but change the subject.

      Because Bob fans cannot stand to have Bob held to the same standard he demands of "The Others." You know who "The Others" are, don't you They Can't Help It? They are the life forms whose humanity is regularly questioned by the blogosphere's greatest advocate of Malala like behavior.

    9. @11:20 -- If you dislike Somerby as strongly as you seem to, why are you here bothering the people who find his columns useful?

    10. You mean both of you?

      Why are you so concerned about what other people do with their time?

      I know it's getting hard for both of Bob's fans to defend the guy, but can't you at least come up with something a bit more mature and original than "Oh yeah? Stop bothering me!"

    11. You repeat the same criticisms ad nauseum and just waste space here. You have no reason to be here bothering people who are interested in what Somerby says, whether they agree with him or not.

    12. Irrelevant Troll Is Vewy UpsetOctober 22, 2015 at 1:51 PM

      "You've been told it was impacting black folks more."
      "Somerby (and Drum, among few others) showed you that's not true."
      "The Troll reaction?: "9, not 8! Gotcha, you awful Somerby!""

      Stop changing the subject!!!! My point is really important!!!! WAHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!

    13. Well, let's see. Has Bob mentioned that driver's license offices were closed in 39.3% of Alabama counties with a white majority, but in 81.8% of counties with a black majority.

      No? Why is he keeping this vital information from you?

  7. "At any rate, the governor’s racism has kept getting worse as we’ve played this familiar old game." Bob Somerby

    At any rate, the only person who used the term racism was Hillary Clinton. Bob chose to disappear that and instead attack young scribes who did not.

    1. Typical Troll DouchesOctober 22, 2015 at 10:40 AM

      Your "liberal" press (including some troll favorites, like Maddow) have misled you. The bigger problem? The people who pointed that out to you.

    2. Clearly the bigger problem is not someone who sincerely writes:

      "Race is our nation’s most important topic. In our judgment, people who clown, toy and posture with race should be consigned to a special circle in corporate cable news Hell."

      The bigger problem is someone who misleads his own readers by falsely stating and implying others have made allegations of racism while ignoring the one person who actually did. Especially when those he attacks have been clearly prompted by the statements of the one who did.

      Such a person does not deserve a place in some bad place after life. Such a person has earned constant derision. As do those who blindly follow him.

    3. I think you are the racist here.

    4. He may not be a racist, but "Typical Troll Douche" sure has his number: The press reporting falsehoods and misleading cherry-picked data is no problem at all for him. On the other hand, he's very upset that the guy who pointed that out didn't *also* attack Hillary Clinton sufficiently for his tastes. Racist? Maybe. But a douchebag troll? Of that there is no doubt. Each additional post provides another data point. Being a troll, he has nothing but time when it comes to digging his own grave.

    5. Who wrote this headline?

      WHAT BAD POLITICS LOOKS LIKE: The governor’s racism keeps getting worse!

      Who among those quoted in this series has used the word racism?

    6. Turtle on a FencepostOctober 22, 2015 at 3:00 PM

      I agree with Even Hand. The press reporting falsehoods on this issue was so dire Somerby had to jump on it immediately eleven days after the first report. And on all but two occasions he had to note the articles were accurate. And the cherry picking was so bad he had to leave out things that were a different kind of fruit altogether.

      And I, for one, have never seen a more clear call to attack Clinton since Beau Biden slimed her one last time in his dying breaths.

  8. "Within the literature, this widely observed tendency is known as “The candidate’s fourth button,” for reasons we’ll note below."

    "But from that day to this, experts on American journalism refer to the familiar practice of “improving” accurate facts by a whimsical name. They call it “Gore’s fourth button.”"

    Bob "Four Thumbs" Somerby

    If you want to see an example of "improving" accurate facts, or "inventing" non-existent facts, I suggest you do a Google search using the term "Gore's Fourth Button." Then search for "The Candidate's Fourth Button." Finally search for :Arianna Huffington Gore For Buttons."

    Now, do a search on The Howlers on search engine for the time since 2011 for the term "People are Dead All Over the World Because."

    Compare the results and see who engages in the practice Bob Somerby said is defined as "Gore's Fourth Button."

  9. If Gore had been elected instead of Bush, Iraq would not have been invaded. That is indisputable.

    Here's what I find when I do your suggested search (correcting "for" to "four"):






    Among the DailyHowler complaints, there are other articles that did indeed focus on Gore's suits and the number of buttons.

    If your complaint instead hinges on some obscure numerical comparison between searches (dependent on those particular search terms), you need to get a life.

    1. I made no complaint.

      Bob Somerby made two statements. One concerned what "a widely observed tendency" is known as. The other concerned what term "leading experts on American journalism" use.

      It is obvious the wide observer and the leading expert is Bob Somerby and nobody else.

      I loved your search efforts. Only one even mentioned four buttons. It was a self published satire that did not mention Gore in conjunction with suits.

    2. Thus proving you didn't read them. We've played this game before. I'm not going to run around the tree with you.

    3. You jumped out of the tree and landed on your head.
      Anyone who follows your links and reads the articles know that.

  10. 1. A county is not a "neighborhood," so the population distribution of a county is irrelevant.
    2. What is the likelihood that the decision was pure as the driven snow, and that politics, which includes the fact that most blacks are Democrats, was not involved?