Monday, October 24, 2005

U.S. vs. Canada: Rice's visit to Martin

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is about to make her first official trip to Canada. Monday, CNN and Fox News took different approaches to covering the story. CNN chose a Reuters story that has more of a perspective from Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin whereas Fox News ran an AP story which highlights Rice and Bush’s perspective. Both articles talk about the issues between the two countries but Fox’s article seems to have the U.S. on the attack while the opposite is true for CNN. Is Fox being more friendly towards the Bush administration? Is CNN trying to make the administration not appear as strong?

Here are some examples from the article:

Headlines:

CNN headline: “Canadian leader ready to debate U.S. on trade” with a sub-headline of “Prime minister to press softwood issue as Rice makes first visit”

FOX headline: “Rice to Discuss Lumber, Bird Flu on Canada Trip”

Opening sentences:

CNN opening sentences: “Canadian Prime Minister Paul Martin kept up his attack on U.S. trade policy on Monday as he prepared to meet Condoleezza Rice later in the day on her first official visit to Canada as U.S. secretary of state.

"Friends live up to their agreements," Martin said in calling on the United States to respect a ruling under the North American Free Trade Agreement on Canadian exports of softwood lumber.”

FOX opening sentences: “A lumber dispute and the threat of bird flu were on the agenda for Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's trip to Canada on Monday.

Rice's overnight trip to the Canadian capital of Ottawa was her first since taking over from Colin Powell in January as the top U.S. diplomat. It had been delayed in part by U.S. resentment over Canada's refusal to join in a North American missile defense shield.

References to Bush:

CNN’s mention of Bush: “He [Martin] said relations with the United States and with President Bush were good.”

Fox’s mention of Bush: “President Bush pressed Martin earlier this month for a negotiated settlement, but Martin rebuffed the overture and warned that Canada would sue in U.S. courts if necessary.” …

Links to the articles:

http://www.cnn.com/2005/WORLD/americas/10/24/canada.trade.reut/index.html

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,173305,00.html

1 comment:

Kate said...

My guess is that you're a scholarly type, which means you should know that posing the question is only the beginning.

The inane NBC reporter in the boat in 3 inches of water story has made me think about news and objectivity this week. When stories to be reported have to be selected by subjective humans, how much hope does a story ever have of being reported completely objectively. And staging: where does it begin? If we rush Anderson C and Shep S to the scene of hurricane disaster, is this not staging in a small sense?
Lou Dobbs recently said that "only one side of the story counts, the truth", can it really be this simple