Julia A. Seymour is the Assistant Managing Editor for the MRC Business where she analyzes and exposes media bias on a range of economic and business issues. She has written Special Reports including Global Warming Censored, UnCritical Condition, Networks Hide the Decline in Credibility of Climate Change Science and Obama the Tax Cutter.

Seymour has also appeared on Fox News Channel, Fox Business Network and the Christian Broadcasting Network and has been an in-studio guest on the G. Gordon Liddy Show. She has also done hundreds of radio interviews on a wide-range of topics with stations in more than 35 states as well as many nationally syndicated programs. Her work has appeared or been mentioned by radio host Rush Limbaugh, Mark Levin, The Drudge Report, WorldNetDaily, USA Today, CNBC.com, Motley Fool and “Ted, White and Blue” by Ted Nugent. Prior to joining BMI in 2006, she was a staff writer for Accuracy in Academia where she wrote  about bias in lower and higher education and contributed to the book “The Real MLA Stylebook.” She holds a B.S. in Mass Communications: Print Journalism from Liberty University.

Latest from Julia A. Seymour
February 4, 2011, 10:35 AM EST

Jobs are heading up and down at the same time. The Bureau of Labor Statistics announced the morning of Feb. 4 that only 36,000 jobs were added in the month of January, but the unemployment rate dropped from 9.4 percent to 9.0 percent.

The mainstream news media will likely latch on to the dropping unemployment rate, despite job gains that were less than one-fourth of the consensus estimate of 148,000 jobs added. One of the CNBC panelists noted that the increase was "way below consensus."

CNBC's Rick Santelli even lashed out at some of the CNBC "Squawk Box" panel that were discussing the latest jobs report. (VIDEO BELOW FOLD)

January 17, 2011, 10:37 AM EST

- Since Obama took office, only 16 percent of health care stories mentioning the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) included any criticism of their accounting, despite criticism from many conservative and libertarian experts as well as the former head of CBO.

- Networks reporters and guests emphasized the CBO's integrity calling them "non-partisan," "independent" and the "referee" or "arbiter" of legislation costs. CBS's Nancy Cordes even declared them to be "trusted by both parties as the authority on budget matters."


The new majority in the House of Representatives has made it clear that voting on a full repeal of ObamaCare is its top priority, something a majority of Americans support. But their resolution, H.R. 2, has come under fire from the left and the liberal news media over the deficit.

Democrats, including Rep. Rob Andrews, D-N.J., claimed that House Republicans "are breaking their first promise in their first week" because the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) said that repealing the health care bill would add $230 billion to the deficit over 10 years.

CBS's Katie Couric called it "new ammunition" for Democrats on Jan 6, 2011, and on the network news that proved to be the case.

That "ammunition" used to portray the GOP as fiscal hypocrites has also been criticized as "nonsense," not that you'd know it from the network news media.

January 7, 2011, 11:46 AM EST

A sharp drop in the unemployment rate from 9.8 percent to 9.4 percent "surprised" analysts on Jan. 7, but Mesirow Financial's chief economist Diane Swonk warned CNBC viewers that it was an "anomaly."

The drop in unemployment rate confused some because in the same report the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported only 103,000 overall nonfarm payroll gains in December 2010.

CNBC's "Squawk Box" panel reacted to the falling unemployment rate by calling it "sort of a fluke," an "anomaly" and predicting it would rise again. CNBC's Rick Santelli suggested the rate dropped "because people are disenchanted' and dropping out of the labor force."

January 6, 2011, 10:30 AM EST

The 112th Congress took office Jan. 5 and the new Republican majority in the House of Representatives planned to immediately tackle the unpopular health care legislation signed into law in 2010.

The Washington Post reported that House Republicans intend to vote on a repeal of ObamaCare Jan. 12, just one week into the new congressional session.

"ObamaCare is a job-killer for businesses small and large, and the top priority for House Republicans is going to be to cut spending and grow the economy and jobs," Brad Dayspring, spokesman for incoming House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., was quoted by the Post.

That attempt to repeal has been mentioned in many network reports lately, but the public's dislike of the legislation has been missing from most ABC, CBS and NBC news stories between Dec. 5 and Jan. 4.

According to Rasmussen Reports, 60 percent of likely voters favor repeal of the health care law - for the second week in a row. Since the first week of December the percentage favoring repeal has not dropped below 55 percent, and has been between 50 and 63 percent since March of 2010. Those polls were not mentioned in any of the network stories referencing the "controversial" health care legislation.

Only four, out of 63 network stories mentioning ObamaCare legislation in the past month said anything about public opinion of the bill. Only two of those stories, both by ABC, cited any polling data on the issue. In both of those mentions, reporters for ABC admitted that the bill is at "its lowest level of popularity ever" and cited an ABC News/Washington Post poll that found 52 percent of people oppose the bill.

January 4, 2011, 10:04 AM EST

The New York Times reported on Jan. 2 that Chevron has been using outtakes from the film "Crude," an anti-Chevron film in its legal battles. The Times called it "a cautionary tale for lawyers who invite in documentary filmmakers to tell the story of their legal fights."

The footage was allowed in court after a New York federal judge ruled in May 2010 that Joe Berlinger, the filmmaker, had to turn over more than 500 hours of outtakes, according to the Times.

While this Times story was not as biased against Chevron as past articles about the $27 billion Ecuadorian lawsuit have been, but the paper was not upfront about its opposition to the use of the film footage.

December 30, 2010, 9:31 AM EST

Gas prices are "soaring" again, crossing the $3-a-gallon threshold on Dec. 23 for the first time since Oct. 17, 2008. Back then the benchmark was a relief as prices plunged from the highest price ever of $4.11.

Pump prices have been climbing all month, yet network reports downplayed the pain and suffering of consumers. Jim Axelrod of CBS called it "bad news" after reporting some positive economic news on Dec. 28, but concluded "The economy's not great, says economist Dan Greenhaus, but not terrible either."

Compare that to past media exaggeration of gas prices. NBC's Anne Thompson said that "no matter what kind of gas is sold, today it's now unbelievably expensive" on Aug. 31, 2005. That day the national average for gasoline was $2.62 - but the gas price signs shown in Thompson's report were much higher at $3.49.

December 10, 2010, 11:55 AM EST

Each year the Business & Media Institute looks back on the year's news and selects the top 10 worst economic myths. Here is our 2010 list:

10. GM Repayment Shows Taxpayer Bailout Worked

9. All the Economy Needs is More Stimulus

8. Soda is Like Cocaine and Ads Cause Obesity

7. Obama the Tax Cutter

6. The Tea Parties are Astroturf, but Green Groups Aren't.

5. Despite Largest Budget in History, Obama is Fiscally Conservative

4. Lack of Press Freedom in Gulf Doesn't Point to Obama

3. Nearly 10 Percent Unemployment Isn't So Bad

2. ClimateGate? What ClimateGate?

1. The Chamber of Commerce is Taking "Secret Foreign Money" for Election

December 3, 2010, 11:10 AM EST

The unemployment rate rose in November, from 9.6 percent up to 9.8 percent after only 39,000 jobs were added to the workforce. On MSNBC's "Morning Joe" Mark Haines of CNBC called the data "disappointing."

Haines went on to say, "An optimist or a sunny 'glass is half full' kind of person would say the unemployment rate may have ticked up because more people are now looking for work. That's the way that unemployment rate works … but I will grant you that that is a reach."

November 18, 2010, 9:55 AM EST

It’s been a year since thousands of emails and files were leaked from a prominent climate science group at the University of East Anglia, with startling comments including this one: “We can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment.”

Other leaked emails showed potential manipulation of temperature data, a willingness to destroy information rather than release it under the British Freedom of Information (FOI) law and the intimidation of publications willing to publish skeptical articles. The files also indicated that the temperature data was in a “hopeless” state.

Even though many considered it a huge scandal, the three broadcast networks didn’t think so. They ignored the story for roughly two weeks, and have only mentioned it in a dozen stories in the past year.

 
November 11, 2010, 11:07 AM EST

Food-filled winter holidays will soon arrive. But the liberal news media have already spent recent days comparing soda to an illegal drug, promoting a toy ban in kid’s Happy Meals, and generally bashing fast food companies for giving customers exactly what they want.

CNBC’s Erin Burnett outdid food police groups on Nov. 8, when she compared soda to cocaine in a segment discussing a “fat tax.” After citing some claims about people being fatter and living shorter lives, Burnett asked a beverage company spokesperson: “Is your industry killing us?”

November 5, 2010, 10:48 AM EDT

The Bureau of Labor Statistics released the unemployment numbers for October showing “fantastic” gains of 151,000 jobs, according to MSNBC, and an unchanged 9.6 unemployment rate.

CNN’s Christine Romans called it a “good report,” during “American Morning” and noted that it was the “first time in a very, very long time” enough jobs had been added in one month to keep up with new entrants to the workforce. Estimates of the number of jobs needed per month vary between 100,000 and 200,000.

October 29, 2010, 10:46 AM EDT

Media Research Center’s President Brent Bozell appeared on “Fox & Friends” Oct. 29, to discuss the broadcast networks’ spin on unemployment.

“Well, it confirms what many conservatives have said for years. It absolutely confirms it, but when you look at the numbers it really does rattle you because it is so obvious when the same reporters are taking two completely different positions because of their political proclivities,” Bozell told Steve Doocy.

After showing this video of network coverage of unemployment leading up the mid-term elections under Bush in 2005-2006 and Obama in 2009-2010, Doocy said, “OK Brent, so there they are trying to put on the happy face. I’m still struck by the comment during the Bush administration where they were talking about ‘Oh, unemployment’s at 4.8 percent. The sky is falling’.”

October 21, 2010, 10:07 AM EDT

The largest tax hikes in history are imminent and it is still unclear whether Congress and President Obama will come to an agreement before January 1. The networks should have seen those tax hikes coming a mile away, but the Business & Media Institute found the primary theme of their tax cut stories was Obama as  the hero, cutting taxes for the middle-class, not as a tax increaser.

This is the subject of BMI's brand new Special Report: Obama the Tax Cutter: A Network Fairy Tale.

Like the fabled town of Hamelin that hired the Pied Piper to conquer its rat problem, America needed a hero to overcome a faltering economy. According to the news media, that hero was Sen. Barack Obama who made extravagant promises about tax cuts for 95 percent of “working families” and getting the economy back on track.

October 14, 2010, 10:16 AM EDT

Liberals are so angry that conservatives are outspending them this election cycle, the president, MSNBC and left-wing bloggers have resorted to attacks on the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

Liberal website Think Progress, an arm of the George Soros-funded Center for American Progress, claimed that the U.S. Chamber of Commerce was soliciting foreign money and using it for political attack ads here in the United States. It’s a serious charge since it is illegal to spend foreign money on domestic elections, yet the left-wing group offered no evidence to support the charge.

Lee Fang of Think Progress appeared on MSNBC’s “Countdown with Keith Olbermann” to present those allegations, but instead of supplying proof of wrongdoing Fang claimed the Chamber should prove their innocence. “They haven’t proved that there’s some firewall [for foreign funds]. They’re just saying, hey, trust us,” Fang said.

Olbermann ate up those claims, repeating them as fact and bashing the Chamber on multiple nights of his program. He even called the group “something like the Manchurian Chamber of Commerce” on Oct. 8.

October 8, 2010, 11:12 AM EDT

The final government unemployment report before the midterm election was released Oct. 8 showing a loss of 95,000 jobs in September, and an additional 15,000 losses in July and August and an unemployment rate still at 9.6 percent.

But Gallup warned on Oct. 7 that the BLS report was "likely to understate" the job losses in September. By its calculations the unemployment rate is actually much higher at 10.1 percent.

Dennis Jacobe, Gallup's chief economist, found that there was a sharp increase in job losses in the latter half of September that were "unlikely to be picked up in the government's unemployment report."

"Gallup's modeling of the unemployment rate is consistent with Tuesday's ADP report of a decline of 39,000 private-sector jobs, and indicates that the government's national unemployment rate in September will be in the 9.6% to 9.8% range," Jacobe wrote.

October 7, 2010, 10:43 AM EDT

WARNING - VIDEO IS GRAPHIC.

Red is the new green, according to a horrific short film put together by global warming alarmists in Britain for 10:10 a "Global Day of Doing." Blood red that is.

The group 10:10 UK's "No Pressure" video advertisement that was intended to promote its cause begins with a teacher lecturing her students: "Just before you go there's a brilliant idea in the air that I'd like to run by you. Now it's called 10:10 - the idea is that everyone starts cutting their carbon emissions by 10 percent, thus keeping the planet safe for everyone, eventually."

Preaching global warming alarmism to children is nothing shocking, but the next part of the film was. The teacher singles out the two students who are skeptical about participating, presses a red button and BLAM! those children's bodies explode as blood and guts cover their classmates.

Skeptical soccer players, businesspeople and even actress Gillian Anderson all get blown up in the "disturbing" video for not complying with the wishes of the global warming crowd.

The violent depiction may be a new low for the environmental movement, but its violent rhetoric has been in use for years. Yet, the response from the liberal news media in the U.S. has been minimal, despite the willingness of the same outlets to portray - without a shred of evidence - conservatives as "incendiary" and violent.

September 30, 2010, 10:33 AM EDT

After nearly two years in office, the "first rate" economic team that President Obama assembled to turn things around - Peter Orszag, Christina Romer, Larry Summers and Timothy Giethner - has itself nearly turned over.

His E-team of "brainy" economists, as ABC's Claire Shipman called one of them, went to work even before Obama took office, ultimately crafting a massive stimulus plan that they said would create millions of jobs. The media regarded them highly, giving them plenty of live interview time and constantly pushing their economic ideas.

ABC's Diane Sawyer called them "economic gladiators" in late 2008, as Obama was assembling his team. The networks also gave Obama's picks, especially Geithner's appointment, credit for a huge stock market rally.

"Stocks staged a monster rally last week after President-elect Obama unveiled his new economic team. But the euphoria evaporated today," CBS's Anthony Mason declared Dec. 1, 2008, on "Evening News."

September 24, 2010, 11:15 AM EDT

"Greed, for lack of a better word, is good." That was the defining line of Oliver Stone's 1987 film "Wall Street," and his attack on the financial system that the news media would use for decades to portray businessmen as villains.

The theme Stone wants viewers to take away from his sequel, "Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps," was tucked away in the credits of his film on a greenback. "In Greed We Trust," the bill proclaimed where the words "In God We Trust" should have been.

"Money Never Sleeps," which opens in theaters Sept. 24, uses the financial crisis of 2008 as a backdrop for the comeback of Gordon Gekko, the iconic villain of the original. This time Gekko reinvents himself as a changed man, coming back bearish on housing and speculation.

In a business school lecture Gekko warns, "The mother of all evils is speculation -- leveraged debt." He claims the economy is merely moving money around in circles and the business model itself is like a "cancer."

September 20, 2010, 6:47 PM EDT

MSNBC is very upset about one "highly-unregulated industry" and its "questionable and even abusive" working conditions.

What industry? Coal mining or perhaps sewage treatment? No. Keli Goff, an author and political analyst who has a "Daily Rant" on MSNBC's "Dylan Ratigan Show," was complaining about the working conditions of models.

That's right, models. The people paid to walk down runways in designer clothing and be photographed for magazines and advertisements that as Goff put it, essentially are "paid for being beautiful." Every industry has its own problems and accidents, but is the modeling industry really a "human rights" issue as MSNBC would have its viewers believe?

Goff detailed "disturbing" complaints from models and promoted regulation and unionization of the industry. She even called for a "home-grown supermodel" to become the "Norma Rae of the fashion industry." "Union! As Norma Rae said," Goff declared. Norma Rae was a movie starring Sallie Field about a minimum-wage cotton mill worker, based on the life of an actual textile worker who battled to unionize her mill.

September 16, 2010, 10:34 AM EDT

The largest tax hikes in history get closer every day, and the focus of the news cycle is finally on taxes. Tax cuts, that is.

After portraying Obama as a tax cutter when he took office, journalists have recently been talking about the Bush tax cuts, whose expiration will amount to a huge tax increase on Americans. But most stories have failed to explain that the pending expiration will raise taxes on many people, including investors, small business owners and families, during an economic slowdown.

While cable primetime shows criticized conservatives for wanting to "cut taxes" for the wealthy, a morning appearance by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell was one of the few that put the debate in perspective of tax hikes. McConnell appeared on MSNBC's "Daily Rundown" Sept. 14 and said, "This [Bush tax cuts] has been tax policy for 10 years now. This is not about tax cuts, this is about raising taxes in the middle of a recession."