On Tuesday’s "Good Morning America," co-host Diane Sawyer and reporter Jake Tapper highlighted the Democrats’ strategy to "get tough on the White House." The ABC correspondent discussed plans to begin hearings on holding the Bush administration accountable for issues such as global warming, Hurricane Katrina, Darfur, and Iraq. Tapper indicated that the President would soon be assailed from all sides. A sampling of the report’s phrasing seems to indicate approval for these hard-nosed Democrats:
Diane Sawyer: "Well, global warming. We said that the Democrats had promised to get tough on the White House. They're doing it with hearings on all fronts. But up first, global warming, and the charge that scientists who warned about global warming were muzzled by the Bush administration."
Next, Jake Tapper apparently found a phrase that he enjoyed:
Jake Tapper: "It's just one of many Democratic investigations where they hope to hold the White House's feet to any number of fires. The White House is under attack from every angle. From global warming, to the rebuilding of New Orleans, to Darfur, to Iraq."
Later in the report, he discussed hearings on Hurricane Katrina and returned to the fire analogy:
Tapper: "This week, a Senate committee went to New Orleans to hold the President's feet to the fire on Katrina recovery."
This is really too funny. On Monday, Reuters released the findings of an international ACNielsen Internet poll concerning global warming. As one might imagine, Reuters took the most dire assessments from the study and made them the focus of the piece.
Yet, the most startling conclusions from this survey – that only “50 percent reckoned [global warming] was caused by human activities,” and that “Americans [are] least convinced” about this – were buried deep in the article.
Instead, Reuters led with the following two paragraphs:
Yesterday NBC's Today show pondered if Hillary Clinton was referring to Bill as one of the 'evil men' she had much experience with but never got around to fully answering the question. Well NBC’s Andrea Mitchell, on this morning's Today, attempted to answer the question and found, via a Clinton surrogate, the 'evil men' Hillary was talking about were Ken Starr, Newt Gingrich and George W. Bush. During the piece Mitchell ran a soundbite from Lisa Caputo claiming: "CertainlyKen Starr and Newt Gingrich would be at the top of that list as would be this White House." Having addressed that question Mitchell moved on to analyzing the Clinton's "complicated marriage" and how the former President "overshadowed his senator wife," but concluded that Bill’s presence was mostly positive as she regurgitated this old Clinton-line: "So as they used to say back in 1992, 'Buy one, get one free.'"
Fox News "Special Report" anchor Brit Hume led off his "Political Grapevine" segment Monday night by citing a piece that appeared that day on Times Watch, on the paper's double standard regarding the expressing of personal opinions on television. Here's Hume:
"A New York Times reporter has been rebuked by his superiors after voicing the hope that the U.S. can accomplish its goals in Iraq. Here's what Times chief military correspondent Michael Gordon said on the Charlie Rose show earlier this month, quote:
'As a purely personal view, I think it's worth it, one last effort for sure to try to get this right, because my personal view is we've never really tried to win. We've simply been managing our way to defeat. And I think that if it's done right, I think that there is the chance to accomplish something,' end quote. Times Public Editor Byron Calame writes that Washington Bureau Chief Philip Taubman said Gordon quote, 'stepped over the line' and quote, 'went too far.'
"Timeswatch.com points out that last summer Times reporter Neil MacFarquhar appeared on the Rose show, and criticized Bush administration practice of sending bombs to the Middle East, saying the policy, quote, 'erodes and erodes and erodes America's reputation.' MacFarquhar received no reprimand for his comments."
2006 will go down as the year that the media universally tried to sell America on the unproven theory that man-made global warming is destroying the planet, and will cause our imminent doom. Part of this hysteria includes fallacious assertions by all involved that there is a scientific consensus regarding these dire predictions.
Though they are likely to get little attention from an hysterical press, two books by prominent scientists have recently been released that scientifically disprove global warming theories, and supply a little sanity for those who like to proceed with caution before jumping on tenuous bandwagons.
As reported by the Center for Global Food Issues Tuesday (emphasis mine throughout, h/t Drudge):
When a NBC military analyst made the case that US withdrawal from Iraq would have very harmful consequences, you might have expected Meredith Vieira to argue the point. But not only did the NBC host seem to buy into his logic, she took it a significant step farther toward its logical conclusion.
Retired LTC Rick Francona was Meredith's guest on this morning's "Today." The appearance was sparked by reports that the US has amassed firm evidence that Iran is supplying a variety of weaponry to Shia militias in Iraq, including shoulder-fired missiles and sophisticated IEDs responsible for the deaths of many Americans. The screen graphic posed the question "Is U.S. Fighting Iran in Iraq?"
Francona made his thesis clear from the get-go: "We're in a power struggle with the Iranians over who's going to exercise influence in the future in Iraq, and they want to be that power. It's either us or them."
Vieira set the stage for her off-the-Dem-reservation remarks with this question: "So they're hoping if and when we leave Iraq they will fill the power vacuum that is left?"
The New York Times thinks you are a criminal if you own a gun. The editorial writers at the Times simply don't believe that you could possibly be a law abiding citizen if you are interested in self defense, their most recent anti-gun piece reveals.
Their January 30th piece, incongruously titled "A Day Without Guns ..." -- incongruous because the piece itself does not address any such subject as a day without guns -- cannot be interpreted too many other ways than contempt for both the citizenry as well as the Constitution.
Twenty years ago, the Florida Legislature cravenly decided to allow "law abiding" citizens to carry concealed weapons merely by declaring their preference for self-defense. Then last July, at the prodding of the gun lobby, the current crop of state lawmakers proved they could be even more corrupt and cowardly than their predecessors by deciding to make the list of gun-toting Floridians a secret.
The quotes around "law abiding" says it all. In such a case, the usage of quotes marks obviously denotes sarcasm as opposed to a mere quote and their position that no gun owner could be a law abiding citizen rings through loud and clear.
"Truth is stranger than fiction" is a phrase you often hear tossed around. I'd add a corollary to it: truth can be funnier than fiction, too.
Such was the case on tonight's "Hardball" where host Chris Matthews got so excited with his quest to blame the Bush admin for the Valerie Plame kerfuffle, he actually started drooling about it on the air, going past anything that "Saturday Night Live" actor Darrell Hammond has ever done in parody.
And no, that's not hyperbole. See the screenshot to the right and watch the video here in WMV or in RealPlayer.
NewsBusters Senior Editor Tim Graham, Director of Media Analysis at the MRC, appeared Monday night with Wall Street analyst Charles Payne on FNC's O'Reilly Factor. Topic: The controversy over CNBC's Maria Bartiromo using a jet owned by CitiCorp. Tim used the opportunity to pivot to a wider discussion of liberal bias at NBC News, citing how NBC was the first to pounce on John Sununu for using corporate jets during 41's term, how NBC News is now pounding away at the irrelevance of President George W. Bush and how the Today show is the most slanted morning show.
Lynn Sweet has seen an angry Hillary up close and personal, and it left a mark, as you can see by the screen capture of Sweet describing that moment. You can't get much more mainstream than Sweet: D.C. bureau chief for the Chicago Sun-Times, columnist for The Hill, a weekly newspaper that covers the Congress, member of the National Press Club and the Gridiron Club.
Appearing on this afternoon's Hardball, Sweet was discussing the incident in which Hillary, in Iowa, jokingly referred to having experience with "evil men." The question naturally arose as to whether Hillary was alluding to Bill.
So imagine the look on my face when I picked up the Times this morning to see yet another fawning portrait of Obama today (Mon. Jan. 29, 2007)! This time, the piece is, "Occidental recalls 'Barry' Obama," placed prominently on the top of page B1 spanning 1,456 words. (See an image of the article.) Three photos, including one of a smiling, youthful Obama, accompany the piece. Need I even mention that the article is a pretty positive sketch of its subject?
If you wake up on Saturday mornings and flip on the telly hoping to catch solid Wall Street analysis or perhaps a roundup of foreign and domestic business headlines that affect your investment portfolio, don't waste your time with CNN's "In the Money."
Rather than looking to help average joes invest wisely and benefit from a strong economy and a resilient stock market, the CNN crew would much rather sound like Heidi Cullen hosting a movie night/slumber party for the Al Gore fan club.
CNN analyst, author, and former Clinton operative James Carville appeared on Monday’s "Good Morning America" and complained that journalists are too tough on Hillary Clinton. Referring to the comment made by the New York Senator and 2008 presidential candidate that she has experience dealing with "evil and bad men," Carville asserted that members of the media should be lauding her strong sense of humor. The Louisiana native also touted Mrs. Clinton’s nascent White House run, saying that it was the best campaign kick off ever. However, the CNN analyst became most animated when speaking of Hillary’s recent joke:
Diane Sawyer: "I want to turn to Iraq in a moment, but you mentioned sense of humor. So, who did you think she was talking about when she said that about bad men?"
James Carville: "You know– You know, journalists are funny. All you hear is, [Adopts whiney tone] 'Hillary don't have a sense of humor. She’s too cold. She does this and that.' And then, she cracks a joke, which, by the way which was a pretty funny joke. And they say, 'Well, look at this. Look at this.' You know? And I thought it was sophisticated, and the fact that she didn't answer it is an element of good humor. And I know her personally to be a very warm and humorous person and I was delighted to see that come out. Good joke, Senator. Way to go."
It's been the topic du jour on radio talk shows and blogs: Who was Hillary referring to when she asked: "And what in my background equips me to deal with evil and bad men?" Some have speculated Ken Starr, others, including this morning’s Today show hint the target was a little closer to home. Matt Lauer greeted Today’s viewers with the following opening: "Campaign swing, her first trip to Iowa since announcing she's running for President, Hillary Clinton raises eyebrows when asked about dealing with men like Osama Bin Laden."
Hillary Clinton: "And what in my background equips me to deal with evil and bad men?"
My NewsBusters item last week previewed how Sunday's then-upcoming episode of the L word, Showtime's drama series about lesbians in Los Angeles, would feature the “Unauthorized Abortion of W,” a sculpture of a woman's body with an exposed womb displaying George W. Bush's adult face with each of his hands holding onto a rocket labeled “U.S. Air Force.” The rockets were angled to suggest they represent forceps. The preview on which I based my posting (video in the earlier NB item) only displayed the exposed womb in a woman's body. The full scene aired Sunday night showed that the figure was made to look just like Barbara Bush, with an American flag blindfold, and with the suction end of a vacuum cleaner just below her crotch.
I didn’t know that the late Crocodile Hunter Steve Irwin’s daughter Bindi was such a media star. However, at a recent press conference at the National Press Club, the charming eight-year-old was asked:
You’ve been doing all these interviews, right? All week long...How do reporters compare to like poisonous snakes?
CBS News correspondent Cynthia Bowers reported that Hillary Clinton’s campaign trip to Iowa this past weekend "marked the first time any Clinton has ever campaigned in Iowa." Ms. Bowers, reporting in the 7:00 half hour of Monday’s "Early Show," should have researched the facts before making such a blanket assertion. According to a Nexis search, CNN reported on February 11, 1996 that then President Clinton was campaigning in Iowa, even though he had no primary opponent, to "solidify his support." And, a Nexis search on Hillary Clinton revealed that the New York Senator was the key note speaker at a Democratic Party Jefferson-Jackson Day dinner to raise funds for Iowa Democrats on November 15, 2003.
Ms. Bower’s report, while not necessarily biased, raises the question, is anyone at CBS doing research? One would think that in the wake of the Dan Rather "memogate" scandal in 2004, CBS journalists would be more cautious about what they report and would take the time to verify the accuracy of their claims.
PBS tonight airs a documentary on the late Milton Friedman, and perhaps surprisingly enough, the taxpayer-funded network did a good job. [check here for local listings]
UPDATE: You know it's gotta be good. NY Times reviewer Ginia Bellafante panned it for being too worshipful of the free market advocate. And yes, your eyes deceive you not, she found a downside to ending the draft (Friedman opposed military conscription, favoring an all-volunteer force).
Below is an excerpt from a review published to the BusinessandMedia.org Web site by Hillsdale political economy professor and BMI advisor Dr. Gary Wolfram.: