Howard Kurtz, the longtime Washington Post media reporter and CNN media-show host, inadvertently defined exactly what’s wrong with our political culture when he was asked in an online chat about actress Sally Field blurting out in her Emmy victory speech that if women ruled the world, there’d be no [expletive deleted] wars. Kurtz said awards shows might not be the best slot for political analysis, "but she said it at a live news event, so in a way Fox was censoring the news."
This is "news"? Sally Field’s incoherent rant, delivered after a series of stammers, is somehow on par as newsworthy with what your average senior diplomat, military officer, professor, public policy expert or congressman has to say on the subject of war?
Still smarting from his Memogate spanking, disgraced former "CBS Evening News" anchor Dan Rather is trying to reclaim journalistic glory by trumpeting the claims of a supposed Boeing whistleblower. Paul at Wizbang sees an all-too-familiar scenario:
Stop me if you're heard this one....
A has-been anchorman, trying to reclaim past [false] glory tries to destroy a person or an institution by using accusations from a dubious source back-up by documents of dubious credibility. A big blogosphere welcome back to Dan Rather.
This time his target is Boeing but his reportage skills are about the same. Even without benefit of seeing the report (it airs tonight) there are already problems with it.
What problems? Well apparently the Seattle Times has found that the would-be whistleblower, Vince Weldon, has credibility issues:
So her skeletal "plan" is out. At the same time, there's a story in a "progressive" publication claiming that Mrs. Clinton really didn't have much to do with what came to be known as Hillarycare in 1993-1994.
In what should henceforth be known as a Hillary Howler, Paul Starr, co-editor of the American Prospect, tries to convince us that Hillary was, in essence, a figurehead (bolds are mine):
Though the media scarcely registered it at the time, (Bill) Clinton had described this approach in a speech and referred to it in the presidential debates. Moreover, he saw health-care reform through the prism of economic policy, believed that reducing the long-term growth in health costs was a national imperative, and insisted that even while making coverage universal, health-care reform had to bring down future costs below current projections for both the government and the private economy. Among Clinton's close advisors, Ira Magaziner championed the view that these aims were achievable. When he became the director of the health-reform effort and Hillary the chair, their job was not to choose a policy, but to develop the one that the president had already adopted.
Today's Chicago Tribune includes the editorial, "Protect us from Sally Field?" The Tribune is displeased that Ms. Field, who pretty much exhausted her acting ability 40 years ago with "The Flying Nun," was censored by the Fox Network.
In an acceptance speech on Sunday's Emmy Awards program, Sally shared her wisdom: "If the mothers ruled the world, there would be no god-damned wars in the first place." Fox cut out the last half of her sentence. Concluded the editorial:
Some would have been offended by Field's choice of words. Some would have been offended by her political sentiment. But everyone ought to feel a chill over the fact that they didn't get to hear the end of her sentence at all.
So, OK, the Chicago Tribune opposes that chilling effect. Hurrah.
The Trib's outrage might be more persuasive if it didn't selectively edit a story in the same day's paper.
On Tuesday’s "Good Morning America," Diane Sawyer interviewed Hillary Clinton about health care and recycled campaign talking points that her fellow 2008 Democrat, John Edwards, has been peddling. According to Sawyer, upon his election, Edwards will "cut off health care for Congress so that they don't have health care while the rest of America doesn’t." The ABC anchor earnestly followed up by wondering, "Would you do that or is that a gimmick?" Clinton responded by observing the implausibility of the concept. She patiently explained to Sawyer that Edwards would "have to get Congress to vote for that, of course."
The Sawyer interview did contain some surprises, however. The GMA host featured two clips from the 2008 Republican hopefuls challenging Mrs. Clinton. But the eight minute and 19 second segment also continued GMA’s habit of offering generous amounts of time to the New York senator. In March, the ABC program featured Hillary for over 30 minutes during a town hall style infomercial. During Sawyer’s interview on Tuesday, she also asked Clinton emotional, softball queries. Over video of Clinton at a ‘93 health care event, the morning show host wondered, "What do you wish this woman we're looking at now on the screen had known then that you now know, since it went down in flames?"
As if she were president already, Hillary Clinton went on CNN’s "American Morning" as well as the morning shows of the "Big Three" networks on Tuesday to sell her new health care proposals, a day after their unveiling. At the close of the "American Morning" interview, co-host John Roberts brought up the controversial "Betray Us" ad by MoveOn.org. He twice asked the junior senator from New York if she wanted to distance herself from the ad. Both times, she skirted the question by talking about General Petraeus and his record of service, instead of the ad itself.
Besides Roberts, Harry Smith of CBS News, ABC’s Diane Sawyer, and NBC’s Matt Lauer interviewed Clinton on Tuesday morning. Out of the four,Roberts was the only one who brought up the issue of the ad.
A transcript of the exchange between Roberts and Senator Clinton, which took place near the bottom of the 7 am Eastern hour of Tuesday’s "American Morning."
Delivering his best Michael Moore in "Sicko," impersonation NBC's Matt Lauer hit Hillary Clinton from the left on health care reform on Tuesday's "Today" show. Appearing in the first-half hour of "Today, Clinton was tagged repeatedly by Lauer as he worried that Hillary "watered down" her new health-care reform plan and feared Hillary had sold out to the insurance industry as he wondered: "Are you losing some leverage in asking these insurance companies to get on board and make tough choices?"
The following are all of Lauer's questions, on health care, to the Senator from New York and her responses as they occurred on the September 18 "Today" show:
Matt Lauer: "Senator Hillary Clinton is in Washington this morning. Senator, good morning to you."
Hiding behind a fake company name, Planned Parenthood came into Aurora, Illinois, a suburban Chicago neighborhood, and built an abortion clinic without telling the city of Aurora that it was to be an abortion clinic. Yet, all the news about this story is centering on the pro-abortion/pro-life debate instead of Planned Parenthood's lies. This story has been going on for a few days in Aurora, Illinois. It seems Planned Parenthood told a teeny, tiny white lie to the City Planning Board of Aurora about what use a new building they were constructing near a residential neighborhood would be put to. In fact, they even misled city officials as to who they even were, and those officials are none too happy about it.
The city granted a building permit to a company called Gemini Office Development LLC to build what was being called a “medical office building.” It turns out, however, that Gemini Office Development LLC is actually a shell company for Planned Parenthood and this new building was not going to be just a regular, non-descript “medical office building” but a Planned Parenthood abortion mill, instead. Curiously, Planned Parenthood neglected to tell the city of its plans until the building was complete and they were ready to open for business.
If you were a former president of the United States of America, would you be doing an interview on a liberal, independent news program that airs on, amongst other things, public access and college radio stations?
Should be able to get a better gig having once occupied the White House, dontcha think?
Such must have been the presidential thinking on September 10th when Carter sat down with Democracy Now's Amy Goodman to continue his anti-Israel rants unfettered by an impartial journalist who might challenge his disgraceful views. Here are some of the lowlights (h/t Tim Graham):
Even as the words were leaving his mouth, Joe Scarborough acknowledged that he was going to get "killed by conservative bloggers." And being the obliging sorts we are here at NewsBusters . . .
Interviewing Hillary Clinton on today's "Morning Joe," Scarborough's performance was one long paean to her perfection, coupled with a mea culpa for the wrongs that he and other Republicans visited on the Clintons during the '90s.
When it comes to health care, could there be anything more antithetical to the American ideal than Big Government being completely in charge? Actually, yes. It would be big government creating a system that requires private-sector entities whose interests inherently oppose to "come together" to form "partnerships" for the greater good.
Yesterday I wrote here about the way in which Hillary's plan forces all Americans, willing or not, to obtain health care insurance, and in an Orwellian twist calling it "choice."
More details about Hillary's plan emerge in Davd Brooks's New York Times column [still p.p.v., but free along with the other columnists as of Wednesday when Times Select goes the way of New Coke.]
As Brent Baker noted, NBC’s Matt Lauer claimed the "liberal bloggers" were going to have a field day with Alan Greenspan’s new memoir – especially the remarks critical of Bush. But before the bloggers jumped, the whole Bush-bashing publicity cycle began with the Dinosaur Media. Their field day began with the newspapers, in particular, Bob Woodward at the Washington Post (noted here on NB by Matthew Sheffield), and continued in the usual network television bashing cycle, starting with "60 Minutes" on CBS. NBC's "Today" demonstrated its routine appetite to inflict another bad-news bruising on the GOP.
This particular AP report is an interesting study in how the AP subtly backs the Democrats in their efforts to undermine the war effort and how they present the GOP as somehow lacking all support or being merely a blocking force in Congress instead of actually representing their constituent's wishes. In the AP's stylebook, Republican = bad and Democrat = good. In this case, funding for the troops is presented like an average fight over tax money and only the Demos side is discussed with no GOP views offered in the story.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Democrats are not expected to take up President Bush's war spending request until November, giving them time to calculate their next move and see if Republican support for his policies deteriorates.
Well, now, see the good news? The Dems have a strategy! But, this strategy consists of depriving our soldiers of the funds they need to keep moving forward. Yet the AP presents it as a mere political strategy, as if it were a story about funding Social Security or Medicare -- just an average funding battle. The AP gives it as benign a presentation as they can.
Then the AP goes on, still ignoring the actual target of the funding debate:
“Harsh accusation,” ABC anchor Dan Harris teased at the top of Sunday's World News as he highlighted how “one of the most respected figures in Washington says the Bush administration went to war in Iraq because of oil.” Harris soon referred to it as “an eyebrow raising allegation on Iraq” in a new book from Alan Greenspan, the former Chairman of the Federal Reserve. But after a Monday Washington Post story, in which Greenspan declared that oil was “not the administration's motive,” and appearance by on the Today show made it abundantly clear the inaccuracy of the implication that Greenspan was somehow endorsing a left-wing conspiracy theory about how George W. Bush went to war to financially benefit Dick Cheney's oil industry friends, ABC's World News on Monday failed to offer any correction for its incendiary, and erroneous, reporting. In fact, the September 17 World News didn't mention Greenspan at all.
The New York Times will officially stop charging readers to access archives and select columnists at midnight tonight according to a release on the business section of their website.
The New York Times will stop charging for access to parts of its Web site, effective at midnight tonight. (src. NY Times)
In reality this isn’t so much of a celebration for me. I was quite happy to see some of the Times celebrity opinion makers sequestered behind the mighty corporate barrier to access. It held a certain sense of ironic justice. But as they say, all good things come to an end.
As expected, the Times can’t even report news about itself without filtering it through the editorial spin cycle.
The Times said the project had met expectations, drawing 227,000 paying subscribers — out of 787,000 over all — and generating about $10 million a year in revenue.
On Monday's "The Situation Room," hosted by Wolf Blitzer, CNN's liberal political analyst/former Clinton advisor Paula Begala distorted Alan Greenspan's words about the Iraq war being about oil, and referred to the "most damning indictment and betrayal that Mr. Bush could have committed." Begala also commented that Greenspan's words show that Michael Moore and MoveOn.org "were in the center" on the issue of Iraq. Begala: "Alan Greenspan ain't the kook left. He ain't Michael Moore. He ain't MoveOn. In fact, he is a guy who now shows that Michael Moore, MoveOn, and the rest of them were in the center." (Transcript follows)
An article in today's Los Angeles Times (Mon. 9/17/07) addressed criminal charges being filed in Kansas against the infamous late-term abortionist Dr. George Tiller. According to the article, Tiller faces 19 counts of "aborting viable fetuses without first consulting an independent physician as required by state law."
As often is the case, the Times is unable to control itself in presenting a misleading and biased story. And not surprisingly, the culprit in this journalistic craftiness is Stephanie Simon, whose work we've reported on in the past here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here. This time: