2004-02-25

Wahlkampf-Klischees in den Medien

--- Die Los Angeles Times wirft einen Blick auf die Vorwahlkampfberichterstattung in den USA und kommt zu der Auffassung, dass die Reporter darin immer wieder dieselben, langweiligen Bilder, Stereotypen und Klischees verbreiten: Sometimes one wonders if campaign reporters could write a declarative English sentence if they were stripped of their clich�s. As USA Today's Walter Shapiro recently observed, "If horse racing didn't exist, political reporters would probably have to invent the sport." Imagine. How would we get through an election year without "neck and neck," "down to the wire," "starting gates," "finish line" or "dark horse"? The clich�s start appearing in the media about the time the first candidate forms an exploratory committee. By this point in the primary cycle, they've become part of the daily diet. "Gain traction" has been popular this season. Reporters have speculated repeatedly when and if the candidacies of Sen. Joe Lieberman, Rep. Dennis J. Kucinich and the Rev. Al Sharpton were going to obtain it. Are these politicians or SUV drivers? And need we mention the "I Have a Scream" speech? That's how a Newsday headline writer described Dean's fabled exhortation in its Jan. 21 issue; two days later, the phrase appeared in the press 27 times. Originality, where art thou?

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