When the Tea Party movement erupted in the spring of 2009, the media elites dismissed them as corporate-generated “Astroturf” noise. They found them barely worth covering, even to besmirch them.
But when the “Occupy Wall Street” protests began on September 17, the liberal media was quickly bombarded with complaints from the Left that the media were ignoring this massive “news” story. NPR executive editor Dick Meyer said the early protests “did not involve large numbers of people, prominent people, a great disruption, or an especially clear objective.” So the protesters went out and blocked the Brooklyn Bridge and drew 700 arrests – voila, a national story.
Very much unlike how they greeted the Tea Party protests in early 2009, the networks are embracing the new left-wing/anti-capitalist protests, even failing to condemn their unruly behavior which resulted in 700 arrests in New York City over the weekend, conduct for which they would have condemned Tea Party activists.
“Is there about to be a nationwide movement building right now to point a finger at Wall Street on greed?” ABC’s Diane Sawyer hopefully cheered Monday night, touting how “protests are spreading across the country.” NBC anchor Brian Williams trumpeted how “the movement that started here in New York about a month ago...now has thousands of people joining in and it's spreading across the country.”
On Monday's NBC "Today," correspondent Michelle Franzen reported on the left-wing "Occupy Wall Street" protests in New York and proclaimed: "Protesters fed up with the economy and social inequality turned out en masse over the weekend....Voicing their discontent and marching for change."
Touting the protest as "a movement that has taken off in the past few weeks with protests spreading to other cities around the country," Franzen declared: "Labor experts say uprisings overseas have empowered protesters to speak out." A sound bite was included of Columbia University's Dorian Warren arguing: "Those movements, those revolutions led by young people [in the Middle East]...I think that's another, let's say, inspiration for why they are sitting-in now."