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October 24, 2003
A Tale of Two, er, Three Headlines

'Tis a far, far, more biased headline the LA Times writes, than has been written before (otherwise known as It Was The Worst of Times, and the Even More Worst of Times):

LA Times, 10/24/03: Immigrant Wal-Mart Janitors Arrested

Reuters, 10/23/03: Feds Arrests 300 Wal-Mart Workers

AP, 10/24/03: Sources: Wal-Mart Knew of Illegal Workers

Aha! It took the AP to put the word "illegal" into the headline. The Times just uses the word "immigrant" as if there is no difference between legal and illegal immigration, like the government was rounding up janitors for no reason, and Reuters doesn't bother to note immigration as an issue at all in its headline.

Federal agents investigating Wal-Mart seized documents from an executive's office Thursday and raided 61 stores across the country, arresting about 250 illegal immigrants working on cleaning crews, authorities said.

The investigation grew out of two earlier probes into the use of undocumented workers by cleaning contractors for Wal-Mart, the world's largest company as measured by revenue. Authorities dubbed the inquiry "Operation Rollback," a reference to the name Wal-Mart uses for its price reductions.

The AP story has more interesting information about Wal-Mart's complicity:

The workers were members of cleaning crews hired by outside contractors, but federal law enforcement officials who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity said Wal-Mart knew of the violations. They cited recordings of meetings and conversations among Wal-Mart executives, managers and contractors.

Remember what David Adesnik has to say about media bias -- it's not outright editorializing that's so much the problem as it is which facts get emphasized in news articles ... and headlines as well.

Sphere It Digg! View blog reactions
Posted by Ed Morrissey at October 24, 2003 8:01 AM

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