I really hope I am wrong here...

I might be looking too much into this photo I and would be perfectly happy if someone told that it's another nonsensical conspiracy theory. 

But bare with me here for a second. 
The McCain campaign is clearly more interested into framing this election into  an identity politics battle instead of a debatie on issues and ideas. How else would one explain the "lipstick" scandal, the ad courting Hillary's supporters, The revival of the Culture Wars in Palin's speech ? 

So on sept 10th, I turn to the local CBS news here in Lafayette (WLFI) , indiana for the coverage of the alleged "lipstick"outrage. 
Check out the photos of McCain and Obama behind the news anchor in the evening news broadcast:  

Granted this is not the clearest photo of my tv screen, but the photo of Obama was so "off" that I had to squint my eyelids to make sure that it was actually him. If you look closer, the photo of choice for Obama here is one that makes him appear to have ungroomed facial hair, emaciated cheeks, darken eye pockets and unkept hair.   I don't know about you but I have never seen a public photo of Obama resembling anything close to that one above.
Now compare it to an actual photo: 

Is it even close ? I think not. 

I don't know anything  about forensic imagery nor do I claim that my tv has a perfect image rendition. But it is a HD set and given the clarity of the news anchor's face and McCain's profile, I think it is reasonable to assume that my tv settings were just just fine. I remember clearly thinking: "that cannot possibly be  Obama,  unless he was stranded on a desert island without food or water for a few days. "

It surely looks to me like  the photo shown on that tv broadcast has been modified to make Obama look a little more..."different". 

On the eve of sept 11th anniversary, it would fit right into the identity politics rethorics.  It would certainly be unethical and crass but not too surprising.

This bothers me enough that I am considering writing to the the local tv station to express my disappointment about their journalistic practice. 

If you think that my suspiscion has no merit or that this is a non-story, I would really appreciate to hear your reasons. 
Maybe there is a  good technical explanation here that I am not aware of. 
I surely hope I am dead wrong here. The debate portion of this election cannot come early enough. Enough is enough indeed.   


  1. Reminds me of the Time cover where they photoshopped OJ Simpson to make him look more menacing. Usual practice, and it is worrying.

  2. Write the letter. You're not the only person I've seen point that out - wish I'd saved the other occasions.

    Can I use this for VwV?

  3. Yup... strongly worded letter and follow up by calling too. Indiana should be firmly behind Obama. Joe Biden after all is his running mate.

  4. Alice B.1:22 PM

    Agreed. Also, do some research and find out what the political leanings of the station's management are. There is no reason for them not to find a crisper picture of Obama to broadcast. And if they actually doctored it, that's outrageous...

  5. Thank you all for the input. As soon as I am back in Lafayette, (I am in Toronto right now and meeting with Amira this week-end) IN, I will write the letter to the TV station and contact the Dems' chapter in town.