In the unedited version, Mitt Romney comes off as highly impressed with Wawa’s sando-kiosks. And in MSNBC’s edited version, Mitt Romney comes off as highly impressed with Wawa’s sando-kiosks.But the video at the link, which bills itself as the "full Romney video" is still clipped out of context. It's not "unedited" as Wemple asserts! It lacks the anecdote about the optometrist dealing with government bureaucracy, which is why Romney told the Wawa story: for contrast. The point wasn't: gee whiz, technology is amazing. The point was: Government, unlike private business, lacks the incentives to make things easy and efficient. Yes, the new clip contains a summary to that effect, but the rest of the context is missing. The effort is to make Romney sound as silly and scattered as possible. Under criticism, some of the context was put back. But it was only enough to try to palm it off as context, and the Washington Post is promoting the palm-off.
In a statement sent to me this afternoon, MSNBC stands behind the editing: “MSNBC did not edit anything out of order or out of sequence and at no time did we intend to deceive our viewers.”
Look at the full text compared to the MSNBC clip (and compare it to what Wemple displays as the "unedited" clip). It's actually a coherent, incisive speech and there's nice rapport with the audience!
Anyone not blinded by a wishful desire for Obama to win knows that Obama would never have been edited like that. And if somehow a short clip (like MSNBC's original Wawa clip) had gone out and gotten mocked, the mainstream media would have fallen over itself getting out the longest, most favorable form of the context, used the occasion to promote whatever point Obama was making and to praise him for his brilliance and eloquence in making that point, and denounced right-wing media for its nefarious out-of-context attack.
Wemple does go on to say that Wawa really is in the forefront of technology here, and it actually wasn't dumb to get gaga for Wawa. Fine. That too. But the key point — maybe the central theme of Romney's campaign — is that competition, free markets, and capitalism work and he's the guy who really knows about it. He's a pretty exciting candidate when you think about the expertise he's offering to bring to running the federal bureaucracy. That's what the mainstream media doesn't want people to see. Only Obama is exciting. Only Obama is brilliant. But no! Both candidates are brilliant and exciting. The question is which way do you want to go?