arrogant.rnThe GOP debate sponsored bvrnWMUR-TV 9 in Manchester provided arnshowcase for the media’s audacious behavior.rnThe press was shuffled into a giantrngarage in the back of the WMURrnstudios. The area was set up so the mediarncould interview the candidates andrntheir spin masters after the debate.rnThere were not enough chairs or tablesrnto accommodate the hundreds of reportersrnwho crammed into the garage.rnOne reporter remarked that it remindedrnhim of a Third World bus station.rnThe press garage became so packed byrnthe time the debate started that movementrnbecame neariy impossible. Oncernthe debate was over, a circus-like atmospherernprevailed. The GOP candidatesrnwalked in one at a time to answer questionsrnfrom the hordes of reporters.rnSo-called “second-tier” candidates likernRepresentative Bob Dornan (CA), businessmanrnMorry Taylor, Senator RichardrnLugar (IN), and Ambassador Alan Keyesrnwere asked one or two questions beforernreporters would interrupt them andrnshout “thank you” to speed them off thernpodium.rnOnce the press conferences were concluded,rnthe spin masters, politicians, andrnpundits descended upon the room andrndeclared winners and losers. The pressrnthen began to do what it so often does, itrninterviewed itself. Reporters interviewedrnother reporters. Shortly afterward, a massrnexodus occurred. People traversed acrossrntable tops fleeing the room. Reportersrnbegan pushing and shoving their way outrntoward the only exit door.rnThe press corps behavior degeneratedrnfurther as the primary drew near. PatrnBuchanan ventured to Timco Lumber inrnCenter Barnstead, New Hampshire.rnWhen Mr. Buchanan arrived, hundredsrnof reporters engulfed the candidate,rnstopping him dead in his tracks. He hnallyrnsqueezed his way inside.rnWhen he came back out to face reporters,rnMr. Buchanan made the mistakernof walking near a shiny red parked car.rnThe media hordes instantly beganrnclimbing all over the car, stepping up onrnthe hood, and setting up tripods on thernroof. No one seemed to notice or mindrnone bit that the ear was being used as arnpress riser.rnThere were about six people on therncar when the hood buckled from thernweight of their boots. Once Mr. Buchananrnmoved away from the car, the mediarnabandoned the automobile as quickly asrnthey found it. The car looked as if it hadrnweathered a hailstorm. Small dents pepperedrnthe hood, complete with muddyrnfootprints. The door and bumper of thernear had scratches on the side the mediarntrampled.rnNext, about a dozen media membersrnascended to the top of a 20-foot high logrnpile. Officials at the lumber yard, fearingrnthe logs would roll, pleaded with themrnto come down. Even Mr. Buchanan imploredrnthem to come down, but alas, notrna single person descended.rnIn the middle of this sea of reporters,rncameras, and microphones, a voice penetratedrnfrom afar. “Hey, Pat, I’m fromrnBarnstead, you have my vote! ” proclaimedrnthe anonymous voice. Therernwas a moment of stunned silence, andrnthen Pat Buchanan quipped, “There’s arnvoter in there. Release him!”rnThe media blockade of the votersrncontinued on election day. Senator Dolerndecided to visit a oting station in Derry,rnNew Hampshire, to create a photo opportunityrngreeting voters. A steady rainrnforced all the media under an awningrnat the entrance. Instead of Senator Dolerngreeting happy voters, the reporters onrnthe scene essentially sealed off the entrance.rnSeveral voters approached thernentrance befuddled. The voters, ostensiblyrnthe reason for the primary, werernbacked up into the parking lot as theyrntried to figure out what was going on.rnOne reporter, possibly feeling a twingernof remorse shouted, “Let the votersrnthrough.” In a triumph of democracy.rnSenator Dole finally retreated to hisrnvehicle and took off allowing the primaryrnprocess to proceed.rnThe media’s overbearing presence inrnNew Hampshire effectivelv separatedrnthe voter for the candidate. The residentsrnwere forced to evaluate a candidaternfrom television news and advertising. Nornlonger was New Hampshire unique inrnallowing the voters to “press the flesh”rnwith the candidates. There can be norncandid one-on-one moment when 300rnmembers of the press are hovering overheadrnwith cameras, microphones, andrnlights. In its frenzied pursuit of newsrncoverage, the media exhibited behaviorrnthat shirked decencv and respect forrnproperty. The fourth estate’s conduct inrnNew Hampshire confirms that ego andrnarrogance have replaced responsiblernjournalism.rnMarc Morano is a reporter for RushrnLimbaugh, The Television Show.rnA Journey to Meccarnby Stan EdwardsrnThe pilgrimage to Mecca sponsoredrnby the National Conference ofrnState Legislatures (NCSL) was everythingrnit was meant to be. The faithfulrnwere comprised of hot- and cold-runningrnstate legislators from all over thernunion. They came in all shapes, sizes,rngenders, brands, and parties; they all hadrnagendas, lists, forms, and maps of Milwaukee,rnwhere the annual event was heldrnlast summer. The thing kicked off appropriatelvrnwith a circus parade, and thernfollowing week would see virtually everyrngroup in America represented in thernMecca exposition hall.rnLobbyists were lobbying each other,rnstate reps and senators huddled inrngroups throughout the two vast floors ofrnthe Mecca Center. The odor of powerrnand good cologne drifted all over thernplace. The first floor was filled to thernedges of its 30,000 square feet with aislesrnof booths, a trade show of American culture,rnand it was a buyer’s market. ThernBeer Institute was mercifully passing outrnfree brewskis, and as I gratefully acceptedrna cool one and sat on a little park benchrnthey had provided in an astro-turfed parkrnsetting, I realized that I was staring at arnLyndon LaRouche booth manned by anrnindi’idual in a rumpled suit streakedrnwith what appeared to be cigaretternash but in fact may have been heroinrnsmeared by Henry Kissinger and thernQueen of England.rnThere were bags and bags of things tornbe had there. The National Right to LifernCommittee was passing out “PreciousrnFeet”: about a quarter-inch high, the littlernfeet in gold “are the exact size andrnshape of an unborn baby’s feet at tenrnweeks after conception.” The next aislernover, the Terminex folks were passing outrntwo-inch plastic cockroaches, and not farrnfrom the Institute for Nude Recreationrnbooth was the modest little booth for thernNational Endowment for the Arts. Thusrnwas my pilgrimage made manifest, for Irnhad been invited by the NCSL to participaternon a panel titled, “Is There a Futurern46/CHRONICLESrnrnrn