Just a few ordinary citizens?

Via Glenn Reynolds, I see that Dan Riehl identified one planted questioner from last night's debate. It turns out that Suzanne Jackson, (mother of a three term Iraq War veteran) is a fairly well known antiwar activist.

Activists have just as much right to ask questions as anyone else. It's just that when their activist backgrounds are known but not disclosed, the false impression is created that they might as well be ordinary Americans selected at random.

Why, they're just plain folks like you sitting at home!

Like the randomly-selected ordinary citizen questioner Khalid Khan.

From the CNN transcript:

MALVEAUX: Our next questions is -- Khalid Khan, if you would please stand for a moment. You and I spoke very briefly, and you said you have some concerns about racial profiling.

KHALID KHAN: Yes, I do. I am an American citizen and have been profiled all the time at the airport. Since 9/11, hundreds of thousands of Americans have been profiled. And, you know, it is like a harassment.

KHAN: My question is that -- our civil liberties have been taken away from us. What are you going to do to protect Americans from this kind of harassment?

MALVEAUX: Senator Edwards, we'd like you to take that. You obviously voted for the Patriot Act, which gives the government extended powers of surveillance. What do you say to people like Mr. Khan who say he's been abused by that power?

EDWARDS: I say he's right. He's right. This administration has done more than abuse the Patriot Act, and the Patriot Act needs to be dramatically changed, by the way.

(APPLAUSE)

OK, I have no way of knowing the extent to which Mr. Khan has been subjected to profiling. But he is not an ordinary citizen. For years he has been a prominent Muslim leader -- the president of the Islamic Society of Nevada, who has hosted conferences like this one (which included the controversial Muzzamil Siddiqi), and the first sentence in a piece in the LA Times described him as "a stalwart among Las Vegas Muslims."

Nor, as it turns out, is Khalid Khan a stranger to CNN. From the transcript of a show last year called "keeping the faith in Sin City -- a surprising look at how Muslims manage to live and work under the glitz, greed and sex in Las Vegas.":

ZAHN: Our special hour tonight continues with a "Top Story" out of Las Vegas, where Muslim prayer rugs and the Las Vegas Strip collide, and collide in a big way.

Islam forbids Vegas standbys, like gambling, alcohol and strip shows. Yet, 14,000 Muslims live and work in Vegas. So, how do they all get along?

Let's turn to Ted Rowlands, who joins us from Vegas tonight. And he has the latest details for us.

[...]

ROWLANDS: The president of the Islamic Society here estimates, there are 14,000 Muslims living in Las Vegas, trying to follow the stringent rules of Islam in Sin City.

KHALID KHAN, PRESIDENT, ISLAMIC SOCIETY: It is a challenge to them. It is a challenge, that they see all these temptation around them, and, still, they just ignore them.

Look, I have no problem with the president of any organization asking questions at a presidential debate. But shouldn't who he is be disclosed? There's just something about the same network putting the president of an important organization on one show as an authority on Islam -- only to later pass him off as an unknown random citizen at a presidential debate -- that I find more than a little annoying.

It makes me wonder what else CNN is not saying.

UPDATE: My thanks to Allah at Hot Air for the link! Allah links another story about Khalid Khan, with video showing that he is of course the same person.

UPDATE: Wow. My thanks to Glenn Reynolds for linking this post! I'm honored to be in such good company, for Glenn also has two more links from Dan Riehl, and a surprising remark from Josh Marshall -- "Can We Just Close Down CNN?"

I'm not going near the "diamonds and pearls" business.

Not in a serious post, anyway....

But I just can't resist mentioning Slublog's post about how the Wolf got neutered (which Glenn also linked), because it's a "pet" issue.

Haven't I repeatedly warned that they wouldn't stop with the neutering of dogs?

UPDATE: My thanks to Doug Ross for the link!

posted by Eric on 11.16.07 at 03:37 PM










Comments

CNN must come up with enough content to keep all their channels going 24/7/365. And if that involves a little harmless deception, what's the problem?

Of course, figuring out what's a 'harmless' deception is a bit tricky. Look at what they did to maintain access to Saddam's Iraq, after all...

JLawson   ·  November 16, 2007 9:41 PM

JLawson;
Knowing that the casino is crooked, why go in to gamble? It's not like it's the "only wheel in town".

Pixelkiller   ·  November 16, 2007 9:49 PM

It's just that when their activist backgrounds are known but not disclosed, the false impression is created that they might as well be ordinary Americans selected at random.

------
and this from your post
------

MALVEAUX: Our next questions is -- Khalid Khan, if you would please stand for a moment. You and I spoke very briefly, and you said you have some concerns about racial profiling.

Isn't that interesting. Dan Riehl has this this post linking to this post among the other troubling issues raised about who were issued tickets, the poster notes

So then, who cares about them moving it to the Cox Pavilion? Well, HERE is the BIG Problem. I have learned from my friends who are well connected to Nevada Democratic Politics that in fact the audience was actually pre-screened.

Prescreened Audience?

I actually joked about prescreening and racial profiling at Dan's site, but as you can see there are actually many more ironies to be drawn from this.

Peach   ·  November 16, 2007 10:03 PM

It is similar to an astroturf campaign. The activists have the right to ask questions, of course, but when they take up the few precious slots at (Hah!) Town Meeting style questions, they create a false impression.

Assistant Village Idiot   ·  November 16, 2007 11:20 PM

Pixelkiller -

That's why I've given up on CNN as a news source. With the internet, if I hear about something I can find out much more information about the event than I'll ever get from CNN.

Plus, CNN never shows things like THIS.

JLawson   ·  November 16, 2007 11:37 PM

Islam forbids Vegas standbys, like gambling, alcohol and strip shows. Yet, 14,000 Muslims live and work in Vegas. So, how do they all get along?

Edwards: Khalid, buddy, don't worry, when I become president, I'll close sin city down.

ic   ·  November 17, 2007 2:16 AM

I watched this farce debate the other night and the deception could have not been more clear. I hope thousands of the TV audience will contact the Clinton News Network (CNN) and let them know what a dismal failure wolfe Blitzer and the "network" was. I firmly believe that the "Clintons" pressured
Blitzer for a softball debate! How sicking are these "Clintons"!! I wish they would just go away!!!

Jim   ·  November 17, 2007 8:05 AM

It all works better when they let Mrs. Clinton give them all the details for the debate. They learned that when they were paying off Saddam.

bandit   ·  November 19, 2007 7:40 AM

Very interesting... as always! Cheers from Switzerland.

Dog training   ·  November 22, 2007 1:16 PM

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dvrh geaclv   ·  December 6, 2007 5:47 AM

very interesting, but I don't agree with you
Idetrorce

Idetrorce   ·  December 15, 2007 7:37 AM

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