Last night, around 6:30 PM, a car bomb was found in Times Square
A crude car bomb of propane, gasoline and fireworks was discovered in a smoking Nissan Pathfinder in the heart of Times Square on Saturday evening, prompting the evacuation of thousands of tourists and theatergoers on a warm and busy night. Although the device had apparently started to detonate, there was no explosion, and early on Sunday the authorities were still seeking a suspect and motive.
Here in the New York area, where the event actually occurred, the local news channels are handling the story with unusual and laudable care, focusing on what we actually know so far, which is what you see above, and that the device malfunctioned and did not detonate.
Over at CNN, however, the hysteria is in full flower. The unidentified female newsbot talking to a former NYPD investigator seemed astonished at the idea that this could be anything but a Muslim terrorist attack, after said investigator indicated that what is MORE worrisome is the possibility of "another Timothy McVeigh." Apparently that possibility had never occurred to the bot that now passes for a media journalist on what used to be the most trusted name in news. T.J. Holmes referred to it as a "terrorist threat." And Alan Chernoff and Susan Candiotti were just on, live from Times Square, debunking the network's own previous coverage of people having seen a man running from the car.
This is the state today of the television journalism that reaches a nationwide audience: wild conjecture gets "out there", becomes fact, and suddenly whatever comes along later becomes unimportant. There's no fact-seeking, there's no reporting on "Here's what we know to be true" (as there is on the local channels).
Because at CNN, it's more important to try to rile up the teabaggers in the flyover states, who are at only miniscule risk of being actual targets for actual Islamic terrorists, for ratings than it is to actually get the facts.
Labels: breaking news, CNN, hack journalism