Obama's Million Ghost March

January 22nd, 2009 2:55 AM

I doubt it would surprise anyone here that the media would go to their best lengths to over-estimate the number of people at Obama's inauguration. But just how far? Try a million people.

ASU journalism professor Stephen Doig took it to the satellite image to get an accurate count of the crowd. His tally, after even accounting for those still in route to the event: 800,000. Now let's look at how the working Obamalists portrayed that to the public.

Baltimore Sun: "Inaugural crowd is estimated at close to 2 million"

Boston Globe: " The National Park Service says it will rely on a media report that says 1.8 million people attended President Obama's inauguration."

MSNBC: "Oh, and some guy named Barack Obama. Along with millions of regular folk, celebrities swarmed to DC to celebrate the Inauguration." (from the same page: "Could Inauguration Crowd Reach 4 Million?")

LA Times: "Crowds surged in previously unseen numbers today for the presidential inauguration of Barack Obama, making it seem increasingly likely that the gathering would reach the record-setting mark of 2 million."

Here's where it gets good.

Washington Post: "the official estimate released by the District yesterday is 1.8 million, a figure that would make the gathering the largest ever on the Mall."

Backstory on that "official estimate released by the District" that the Washington Post is writing about.

AP: "Park service spokesman David Barna said the agency did not conduct its own count. Instead, it will use a Washington Post account that said 1.8 million people gathered on the U.S. Capitol grounds, National Mall and parade route, he said."

And that is especially interesting because if you follow the jump on the Washington Post story you'll find this nugget of info: "The Washington Post's analysis of the image concluded that about 1 million people were on the Mall." And the first page of the article mentions the parade route "was supposed to accommodate 300,000 people at its height". Fuzzy math, a journalist staple.