It's becoming quite clear that the Obama administration's treatment of the press, along with revelations of deceit associated with promises about the Affordable Care Act, are causing some members of the media to think differently about this White House than they did in the first term.
On Wednesday, National Journal's Ron Fournier told talk radio's Laura Ingraham, "[T]his is a propaganda outfit...they are running a government-sponsored media organization" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Hurricane season ended Nov. 30, with an all time-low for hurricanes. The weak outcome didn’t fit the environmental disaster narrative the media had concocted leading up to hurricane season. ABC, NBC and CBS devoted broadcasts to scaring viewers with news of “devastating tornadoes, searing heat waves, withering droughts” and “powerful hurricanes.” But they became strangely silent once the season finished … and next to nothing had happened.
Reporters gobbled up the news when the NOAA predicted “more and stronger hurricanes” this season. In May, forecasters predicted seven to 11 Atlantic hurricanes, but the area only saw two storms become hurricanes. In fact, there were no hurricanes until September 11 this year, almost beating the 2002 record for the latest start to the hurricane season on record.
On November 19, Henry Chao, deputy chief information officer at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, told a congressional committee that "[W]e still have to build the payment systems to make payments to issuers in January" for those who have enrolled in plans through HealthCare.gov.
On Black Friday, while almost no one was paying attention, Alex Nussbaum at Bloomberg News reported that "The administration is setting up a temporary process ... (in which) insurers will estimate what they are owed rather than have the government calculate the bill." Somehow, they'll settle up (or "true up") at the detailed level later. Tuesday evening, Roberta Rampton and Caroline Humer at Reuters covered this development. The Reuters item, which went live about an hour before Megyn Kelly's broadcast last night, moved the Fox News host to treat it as her lead story.
As NewsBusters has been reporting the past few months, late night comics have been having a field day with the disaster that is ObamaCare.
On ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live Tuesday, the host spent a good part of his monologue trashing the program including an observation that “the number of speeches Obama has made about affordable healthcare is greater than the number of people who have actually signed up for affordable healthcare” (video follows with transcript and commentary):
When Rush Limbaugh called Sandra Fluke a “slut” the Big Three (ABC, CBS, NBC) networks went ballistic, making the conservative talk show host a centerpiece in their campaign to tarnish Mitt Romney and the GOP as engaging in a “war on women.” However when MSNBC’s Martin Bashir launched his own war on women against Sarah Palin, not a single anchor or reporter from the Big Three said a word about his vile attack.
In the two weeks (February 29, 2012 - March 14, 2012) after Limbaugh made his crude Fluke joke, that he apologized for, the Big Three networks aired a total of 32 stories or interview segments that were full of calls for Limbaugh to apologize to the liberal activist Fluke, to get advertisers to abandon the show and demand that Republicans condemn the talk show host. NBC, who employs Bashir, aired the most Limbaugh stories with 14. ABC and CBS each aired 9 stories a piece. The number of Big Three network stories in the two weeks (November 15, 2013 - November 29, 2013) after Bashir suggested that Palin would be an “outstanding candidate” for excretory punishments? Zero. The hypocrisy from the supposed civility cops in the liberal media is stunning.
MSNBC host Ed Schultz sometimes makes it clear that he shoots his mouth off before he reads what he’s talking about. Take his Monday rant on “The Ed Show” about a Politico article by Mackenzie Weinger about “5 ways to rescue liberal talk radio.”
The funniest part of this little “Ask Ed” segment is that Schultz claims the Politico article was loaded with "right-wing consultants," when none of the consultants quoted have anything conservative to say on their Twitter feeds. He claimed he wasn't interviewed "because I've probably been too successful for them." But the article is LOADED with quotes from other liberal talkers. People Ed Schultz knows...
This week's list of New York Times best-selling books proves as usual that the Times doesn't review conservative best-sellers. The nonfiction list was topped by "Things That Matter," a collection of columns by Charles Krauthammer and then by "Killing Jesus" by Bill O'Reilly and Martin Dugard. The children's middle-grade list is led by Rush Limbaugh's "Rush Revere and the Brave Pilgrims." There has been no Times review of these books.
All were mentioned by Gregory Cowles in his "Inside the List" briefs. O'Reilly drew this barb in the October 13 newspaper: "Bill O'Reilly's killing machine shows no signs of letting up -- ''Killing Jesus,'' his latest collaboration with Martin Dugard (after ''Killing Lincoln'' and ''Killing Kennedy''), jumps right to No. 1 in its first week on the hardcover nonfiction list." Fox host Brian Kilmeade was at number eight with "George Washington's Secret Six" and Sarah Palin was at number nine -- no reviews. But Cowles slammed Palin in this Sunday's paper:
How does one do a report on an important commerce-related web site without mentioning serious known security problems which are so bad that respected IT experts warn that it shouldn't be used? Ask Kate Pickert at Time's Swampland blog and Kelli Kennedy at the Associated Press, because that's exactly what they did.
Pickert and Kennedy reviewed the new and not much improved HealthCare.gov on December 2 and 3, respectively. No variation of the word "security" is in either writeup. Both reports ignore the fact that IT experts are absolutely appalled at the site's lack of security.
It might seem like another day in Tea Party Land when a conservative columnist accuses the Obama White House “airbrushing history” like the “Stalin era” Soviet Union. But the columnist isn’t a conservative. It’s Dana Milbank of the liberal Washington Post, complaining about what’s happened to White House news photographers.
He’s not alone. A New York Times photographer has publicly compared Team Obama to the Soviets’ Tass news agency. What is going on?
As NewsBusters reported Tuesday, President Obama has chosen to sit down with one of his biggest fans in the news media Thursday.
At the beginning of Tuesday’s Hardball, host Chris Matthews promoted the event hysterically saying, “We're going to be hitting my biggest questions with the President” (video follows with transcript and commentary):
The Marxist German playwright Bertolt Brecht, apropos of a 1953 situation in which the East German people allegedly had "forfeited the confidence of the government," wondered if it wouldn't be easier "in that case for the government / To dissolve the people / And elect another?"
On Monday's PoliticsNation on MSNBC, host Al Sharpton and the Washington Post's Dana Milbank mocked the Republican National Committee for the wording of a tweet that the group sent out marking the anniversary of Civil Rights Movement icon Rosa Parks defying racist Jim Crow laws: "Today we remember Rosa Parks' bold stand and her role in ending racism."
Sharpton picked up on liberal entities interpreting the tweet to be suggesting that racism has already ended, and, without even noting that the RNC sent out a second tweet a few hours later to placate critics by changing the wording, Sharpton pounced as he teased the segment:
Well now the landing page for the Lean Forward network is hailing HealthCare.gov as the "website [which] might just save your life." The teaser headline links to msnbc.com staffer AliyahFrumin's gauzy treatment of President Obama's latest speech plugging his troubled health care overhaul (emphasis mine; see screen capture below page break):
Anyone doubting Roger Ailes' eye for talent needs to go somewhere else besides his shuffling of Fox News's weekday evening lineup, especially but not exclusively his decision to move Megyn Kelly into the 9 p.m. time slot.
Variety's Brian Steinberg reports that Kelly has put even more distance between Fox and its so-called competitors at CNN, MSNBC, and HLN, while Greta Van Susteren and Sean Hannity have both grown their respective time slots (HT Johnny Dollar's Place; bolds are mine):
Talk about burying the lede. Deep within a 5,000-word story published today in the New York Times about the Obamacare website launch is the very damaging disclosure that the much-vaunted “tech surge” promised by the president in late October was mostly just a publicity stunt. In truth, the number of people brought in to work on the project was no more than “about a half-dozen.”
Not only that, despite the Obama Administration’s claims that it met its November 30 deadline to have things fully operational, it turns out that much of the software code that operates away from website users and passes their information along to insurance companies has not even been written.
Monday's CBS Evening News and Tuesday's CBS This Morning both underlined the continuing problems with HealthCare.gov, even after the Obama administration claimed "it met its deadline to make HealthCare.gov work smoothly for the vast majority of shoppers". Meanwhile, the network's competitors at NBC hyped the supposed positive news about the ObamaCare website.
Wyatt Andrews noted how the White House "says that 375,000 people tried to shop on HealthCare.gov," but soon touted how "that high a number created some problems". The following morning, Major Garrett reported that "the challenges are not over" for the online health insurance clearinghouse [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
MSNBC weekend anchor Alex Witt once again showed that she is a big fan of ObamaCare on Sunday’s edition of her eponymous program. Witt’s guest, Dafna Linzer of msnbc.com, had just criticized one of Rep. Mike Rogers’ (R-Mich.) comments on that morning’s Meet the Press, in which Rogers was critical of ObamaCare.
Witt recalled another problem with the rollout that Rogers talked about in that interview: [Video below. MP3 audio here.]
The folks at MSNBC are doing whatever they can to promote ObamaCare.
On Tuesday’s Martin Bashir show, MSNBC contributor and Georgetown University professor Michael Eric Dyson actually said, “There will be millions of men who will rise to the occasion” and be grateful when they can now get Viagra (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Obama sycophant and Hardball host Chris Matthews just landed what MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell called a “big get” interview this Thursday with the president. So naturally he took to the air on Tuesday's Andrea Mitchell Reports to gush about the chief executive who's been known to send tingles up his leg.
Matthews compared President Obama to a “brilliant writer…with a great theme” who “turns in a paper with a lot of misspellings or bad handwriting.” [One wonders if this is in anyway autobiographical, with Matthews thinking of his misadventures in book writing.] [See video after jump. MP3 audio here.]
Leading off a report on Monday's NBC Today, White House correspondent Peter Alexander skeptically observed: "The Obama administration says it met it's own goal of significantly improving the HealthCare.gov website, but that's the easy part. That's like kind of giving yourself a passing grade." At the end of segment, he noted insurance companies warning of the "logistical nightmare" caused by inaccurate information being entered into the ObamaCare database. [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
Despite such critical analysis of the health care law in the nearly 2-minute report, by Nightly News that evening, anchor Brian Williams reduced the news to a mere 28 seconds, emphasizing only the positive: "We have an update now on the HealthCare.gov website. It is now working better and faster, as the White House promised it would by now. But they say they know it is still far from perfect. By 5:30 this evening Eastern Time, the website had logged 750,000 visitors so far today. That's getting closer to that 800,000 daily user goal the rebooted site is supposed to be able to handle."