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Sunday, September 24, 2006

Duke Case: Nuking Nifong?

Ever since Michael Gaynor put out a report in August that 60 Minutes was doing "a blockbuster expose" about the Duke lacrosse case everyone who has followed this case has been very hopeful. Perhaps 60 Minutes would be the catalyst that would finally help destroy this hoax. But where is the tick tock?

On August 16th Gaynor said:

...The current plan is for its thirty-ninth season to begin with a blockbuster expose on the Duke case.

Mike Nifong, make a note: as of now, on September 24, 2006, an inevitable hour of infamy finally will follow your undeserved and disgraceful fifteen minutes of fame and you will realize that your short-term political gain from your deplorable (political) decision to prosecute (and persecute) the Duke Three was NOT worth it.

Gaynor recently made this comment on John in Carolina's blog:
"60 Minutes" long planned a Duke case expose as its season opener, but wisely delayed after Judge Smith scheduled a court conference on September 22, two days earlier.
Geez, it must be nice to have a pipeline right into the heart of CBS News to know what they are thinking. U.S. Presidents should be so lucky.

Crystal Mess posted a comment that highlights the high hopes for an eventual 60 Minutes story:
I happen to be in the camp that believes 60 Minutes is going to NUKE Nifong and the rest of the corrupt Durham power brokers into but burned-on-wood shadows. Sources inform that I am well-grounded in that belief.
The longer everyone waits for a 60 Minutes story the more you have to wonder how much actual "nuking" can a 60 Minutes segment or even double-segment length story do? 60 Minutes is not really 60 Minutes, it's a small fraction thereof.

Last season some hour long primetime TV shows had 19 minutes of commercials:
Only five years ago, a prime-time hour averaged 16 minutes total ad time for 26 ads and promotional spots. The two prime-time hours I timed last week — Fox's "Prison Break" and CBS' "CSI" — averaged 19 minutes an hour of commercial time. The number of different products and promos during those hours flashed by too quickly to count
A 60 Minutes segment is around 13 to 14 minutes of actual story time. A show normally has three segments plus Andy Rooney. Sometimes like the recent Katie Couric report, on "The Dust at Ground Zero," they do a double-length segment.

Unless 60 Minutes is going to dedicate a full show to the Duke hoax it's hard to see how they can adequately tell the story in 13 or even 26 minutes. Try it yourself. Call someone you know who is aware of the Duke story and believes that "something must have happened," and then explain in detail how this case is one big hoax and convince them of that fact. Look at the clock when you finally hang up, how long did that take?

The fact that three innocent men have been framed is just the tip of the iceberg. The hoax is a big sprawling mess and has so many layers of corruption and deceit. There are a large number of lies to deconstruct. So many lies so little time.

The 60 Minutes formula of mixing in some interviews with video background footage and presenting both sides of an issue will leave them precious little time to "nuke" anything. If they just want to raise questions about the case that will be easy. It's answering the questions that will be hard.

Since 60 Minutes is still apparently trying to put this story together the expectations here will be put in check. Hopefully the diminutive 60 Minutes will find a way to do some hoax busting.

later:
Sept 11 - 17
1. Dancing with Stars (Tues) ABC 13.0 rating
2. N.F.L. Redskins vs. Dallas NBC 11.9
3. Dancing with Stars (Wed) ABC 10.9
4. CSI (Thur, 9 pm) CBS 10.0
5. CSI (Thur, 10 pm) CBS 9.9
6. Survior: Cook Islands CBS 9.8
7. House Fox 9.1 rating
8. 60 Minutes CBS 8.7 rating
9. Men in Trees ABC 7.7
10. Extreme Makeover Home Ed. ABC 7.2

sources:
The "60 Minutes" season opener should close the Duke case [renewamerica.us, Aug. 16, 2006]
Let Me Make Myself Perfectly Clear [CrystalMess, Sept. 24, 2006]
What's on? Ads, ads and maybe a TV show [austin360.com, Oct. 11, 2005]

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