The folks at The New York Times are experts at obfuscation, aren't they? Here is a perfect example of the soft selling we get from the leftist editorial board of the Times, a great demonstration of their underhanded practice of creating labels out of thin air that sound sooooo much nicer than would a label that truthfully describes one of their fellow travelers.
This time we have an abortion activist given a more benign title in order to make her seem more representative of women instead of an extreme abortion activist that might represent only a small percentage of people. Obviously the Times wants this person's opinion to be more acceptable than it might if her true background were more obvious. In "Different Rules When a Rival Is a Woman?" we find a John Edwards operative quoted in a story about how mean the Democrat candidates were to Hillary at the last Democrat Presidential debate. The woman quoted is one Kate Michelman:
“It’s outrageous to suggest that it’s sexist for the other candidates to ask her tough questions or criticize her,” said Kate Michelman, a women’s leader and a supporter of Mr. Edwards. “To call it sexist is to play the gender card. Any claim of sexism is just a distraction from the fact that she did not do well in the debate, that she did not answer important questions on Iraq and Iran.”
First let's say how interesting it is to have this "women's leader" bashing Hillary. But, let us also consider this label, "women's leader," a little closer. What, exactly, is a "women's leader," anyway? To answer that we must take a few minutes to learn about our vaunted "leader," Kate Michelman. Here is how the Washington Post described her in January of 2006:
Kate Michelman is the face of reproductive rights.... For a generation, Michelman, 63, has been at the forefront of one of this country's thorniest debates. She was president of NARAL Pro-Choice America from 1985 to 2004.
Wait a minute. You mean, this so-called "leader" is a far left, abortion rights activist? How does that make her a "women's leader," exactly? Would Phyllis Schlafly claim her as her own leader? How about Condi Rice? Do ya think Jean Kirkpatrick would have felt comfortable with a former NARAL president representing her? How about Laura Ingraham, Michelle Malkin, Ann Coulter, Laura Schlessinger... even Tammy Bruce, for that matter? Do you think any number of the millions of women that vote Republican would find Kate Michelman as the sort of person that could be called their leader? I seriously doubt it. So, where does The New York Times get off raising this abortion activist to the heights of being considered a "women's leader," anyway? There is an even more ridiculous aspect of this Times report. They term Michelman, our erstwhile -- or should I say ersatz -- "women's leader," a "supporter of Mr. Edwards" as if she is some random fan of his. But, she is not just a supporter but a senior advisor.
One of the most unexpected alliances announced in these early days has been the hiring of leading women's rights advocate Kate Michelman by former North Carolina Sen. John Edwards. Michelman's new role, as a senior advisor to the Edwards campaign, has surprised many who might have assumed that the former head of NARAL Pro-Choice America would have automatically reported for duty at Camp Hillary, where women's history may be in the making.
So, The New York Times tried to soft peddle the background of Michelman in two different ways in the very same paragraph! That is some fast and furious spinning there. But, then, we know that the Times has an agenda, don't we?