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Friday, April 10, 2009

An Update on the Bow: By the Numbers

I am going to say I told you so even before there is necessarily anything to tell. The story of the bow is simmering. First, let's go to the tape again.

Now, I predicted that the story would soon enough blow up and become a scandal for the administration that would take him off message for at least a week. That hasn't happened just yet, but it is about to. This morning CNN decided it was time to actually report on the story (H/T to Hot Air)

Both Chicago newspapers have a column today about it. Furthermore, Robert Gibbs was asked about it yesterday at his daily briefing. He stuck to the White House story that the president was merely shaking with two hands and bending down to a smaller man and even dismissed the story by saying this

I'm sure it's of great cause and concern to people struggling in this economy.

All that's left to get this into the mainstream is a segment on the View and for Jay Leno and/or David Letterman to use it in their monologues.

Let's make no mistakes. This story won't hit the mainstream because of the MSM but rather despite it. Between pirate attacks, the economy, North Korea, and Iran there is plenty to keep the media busy.

To understand why this story is about to take off all we need to do is analyze the numbers. Youtube has at least five versions of this video. Between the five, they have been viewed almost three million times and counting. There are about fifty thousand comments attached to the three million viewings. The numbers tell the story. That's a video people are interested in.

Ben Smith of Politico had a blog post about it and it had over 3000 comments. He had a follow up and that is now over 1000 comments. His third story is near three hundred comments. I went through his archive and stories range from a handful of comments to a few hundred. The first two were the two most commented posts by far. It's likely by the end of the day the three stories about the bow will be the most commented stories on Smith's blog. A story with a lot of comments is one that people are not only interested in but one that provokes a response. The numbers say this story has both in spades.

This two day old Chicago Sun Times story produced nearly two hundred comments. Their stories average less than half that. (if you read this story later in the day check out the links to the two original Chicago paper stories. I would bet the comments following it will be overwhelming by the evening) A story posted earlier today on FoxForum already has nearly 2000 comments. That's above what they average and the story has generated this startling amount of comments in less than three hours.

The liberal Huffington Post has nearly 4000 comments. That isn't necessarily the most ever but in their top 20% of all their stories. The liberal site, Wonkette, has 188 comments to this story on their site. They average just under a hundred comments. The liberal site, Crooks and Liars, has 130 comments to their story on the matter. The average about 70 comments on their stories. Ironically enough, the three liberal sites play the angle that this is all much ado about nothing, and yet, their liberal commenters seem to have a lot to say about "nothing".

Of course, the conservative blogs has a massive fascination with it. This Hot Air story about had over 400 comments and 30 stories link to it. Both are near the top of their averages.

While all of these numbers continue to merely be anecdotal, numbers also don't lie. This is by far the most talked about story Ben Smith has done that I have found. Three million viewings is massive. It appears that wherever it appears the story is the subject of great debate. This means the story is tailor made to explode.

The story has all the elements of one that winds up on the front pages soon enough. That's because it has several layers. The bow itself is rather disturbing. The first time I saw it, the bow wasn't that bothersome, but it has become much more bothersome with subsequent viewings. Second, the bow opens up all sorts of debates about the way President Obama views our nation, and also our "relationship" with Saudi Arabia. The most troubling aspect of the story from the perspective of the White House is that they continue to deny it happened. Everytime they do this, the video becomes the subject of more interest. Their obfuscation and deceit about something everyone can obviously see happened is what will ultimately carry it to the front pages. The element of he said/he said is what will drive this to the front pages. I predict that by about Wednesday of next week this will become one of the leading stories everywhere.


Anonymous said...

The bow was a major gaffe, but what are you implying about it? It wouldn't be the first time an American president had to make nice with the Saudis.

I'm concerned that this could somehow reignite the idea in the minds of his opponents that he is secretly a Muslim.

mike volpe said...

I'm not implying anything. I accidentally published the story before it was ready. Trying to excuse Obama by pointing to Bush is nonsense. Obama ran as the anti Bush. For him and you to justify his behavior now by saying Bush did it too is total nonsense. The biggest problem is that he continues to lie about it.

Anonymous said...

"The biggest problem is that he continues to lie about it."

Goebbels would approve of the strategy, and the MSM is complicit.

Anonymous said...

"I'm concerned that this could somehow reignite the idea in the minds of his opponents that he is secretly a Muslim."

" Muslim faith"
"...campaigned in all 57 states"

Makes you wonder what speech he had just finished giving, and to whom, doesn't it?

Anonymous said...

To the anonymous poster who said, "I'm concerned that this could somehow reignite the idea in the minds of his opponents that he is secretly a Muslim."

I'd say "secretly" is just about over.

Anonymous said...

I agree with you, mike. The most disturbing part of this story is the fact that our President, his administration via his spokesman, Gibbs, is disrespecting the intelligence of Americans by lying about the fact that he was bowing.

Gibbs claims that Obama was merely bending down to shake with both hands. Anyone who watches that video can clearly see that Obama bows down and reaches out with his right hand while his left hand remains by his side. Obama does not bring his left hand up until AFTER he stands up after bowing and shaking hands using his RIGHT hand.

Also, note Obama's right leg as he BOWS down.

Obama, Biden and Gibbs are liars.

btallier said...

This guy bows to a king, but not a queen. I think he has a problem with women.

Anonymous said...

Most likely, just thanking the king for putting him through Harvard?


Educated Black Guy (yes, Black and didn't vote for Barry) said...

So, Barry give the bust of churchill back, barely nods his head to the queen, and nearly falls on his face bowing to the Saudi's.
SO WHAT!?? As long as the Arabs love him, who cares....I mean, we're not asking Americans, right, just Euros?
At least he didn't say ARGH MATEY, or try and bump fists.

Anonymous said...

...Besides, the white house excuse is that OBambi is so much taller than the King.

Its a good thing that the Queen of England is so much taller than the Saudi ruler, otherwise he would have bowed to her too.

mike volpe said...

This will go off topic but that second to last comment just gave me an excuse to quote a favorite line from City Slickers

"Yes, we're black and we're dentists, let's not make an issue of it".

Anonymous said...

When I first heard of this I assumed that he had made a blunder by simply not recognizing that an unconquered head of state does not bow. But upon seeing the video the first thing I realized was that he was excited at the prospect of meeting the Saudi king. This was not a bow of politeness but a bow of admiration, respect and dare I say holiness. Obama's father was muslim and he spent time in that culture. I am not saying that he is muslim but he onviously has a reverence for that religion and was genuinely excited at the prospect of meeting their king.

Anonymous said...

How is this story going now?

Has it gone past "simmering" and "reached a boiling point"?

See on you the next post making a mountain out of a molehill.

You remind me of a shrill little town crier.

mike volpe said...

It isn't a mountain out of a molehill however there are a lot of stories that happen at any given time. You will notice his opponents will link the bow, to the handshake with Chavez, to his anti Americanism in general.

You are, however, someone who obsessively visits and comments on everything of someone that you, yourself describe as like a court jester. Interesting...