Latest from Matthew Philbin
June 19, 2014, 9:43 AM EDT

An American teenager, along with two Israeli teens, has been kidnapped in Israel. “[T]wo jihadist groups had posted claims of responsibility for kidnapping the teens,” according to The Washington Post. Israel is in an uproar as the government tries to find them.

But in America, the broadcast networks are breathlessly covering the new movie “22 Jump Street.” In fact, ABC, CBS and NBC have devoted more than 10 and a half minutes to the sophomoric slapstick movie comedy. That’s more than twice what they’ve given to the kidnapping.

June 16, 2014, 10:32 AM EDT

Well, ABC and NBC are acting to type, ever reluctant to call evil by its name when doing so is politically incorrect (and possibly dangerous).

Consider both networks’ reporting on the story of the school girls kidnapped last month in Nigeria, and a second, smaller group kidnapped last week. To date, NBC identified the kidnappers of hundreds of Christian girls as Islamist less than 33 percent of the time (12 mentions in 37 reports). ABC’s record is particularly shameful – just 22 percent (eight of 36 total reports) of stories mentioned that Boko Haram, the terrorist gang that abducted the girls, are radical Muslims.

June 11, 2014, 11:06 AM EDT

What do you suppose it costs to run a 60-second ad in major markets during the NBA playoffs on ABC? And can you think of something better to do with the “significant investment” a California Indian tribe has made than to register disapproval of a sports mascot?

The Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation isn’t saying how much it paid for the spots, airing in New York, D.C., Chicago, Dallas, L.A. San Francisco, Sacramento and Miami. It is saying that it ponied up for the anti-Redskins ad because, “It’s just a time to get people thinking about putting an end to outward hatred and using sports as a tool to focus on racism,” according to tribe spokesman Marshall McKay. Video after the jump.

May 9, 2014, 11:53 AM EDT

Here’s a story for the nightly news: a plucky upstart overcomes establishment hostility to reach a seemingly impossible goal. The problem is that the nightly news is the establishment, and the Gosnell Movie project, which just reached its initial crowd-funding goal, deals with something they don’t want to talk about.

Headed by producer Phelim McAleer and wife Ann McElhinney, the Gosnell Movie campaign has reached its initial goal of raising $2.1 million from more than 23,000 individual donors through the crowd-funding site Indiegogo. The money raised will fund a scripted TV drama based on abortionist Kermit Gosnell’s trial and grand jury report. But McAleer and McElhenny aren’t done.

May 7, 2014, 12:21 PM EDT

If an NFL team ends up taking Michael Sam in a late draft round – or not at all – don’t blame the media. The Missouri defensive end came out of the closet to near universal media adulation (coincidentally timed with the NFL Combine in February). Now, with the draft looming on May 8, ESPN and ABC are doing their parts to make sure Sam is picked.

ESPN announced May 7 that it’s bestowing Sam with the Arthur Ashe Courage Award. The ceremony doesn’t take place until July, but it’s never too early to remind NFL coaching staffs that Sam had the courage to join society’s most trendy and celebrated grievance group.

April 25, 2014, 10:40 AM EDT

Note to institutions embroiled in scandal: when The New York Times calls, don’t bother taking the call.

That, apparently, is the lesson Florida State University learned the hard way on April 16, when a front page Times hit-piece by Walt Bogdanich left out nearly all the information the school said it provided the Times.

April 3, 2014, 10:32 AM EDT

It’s Opening Day week and all things are new again. Except the fact that liberals won’t let us just be happy watching our sports. That’s not new. In fact, as anyone who’s read Roger Kahn’s “The Boys of Summer” knows, determined liberals have been trying to suck the joy out of the sporting endeavor for decades.

But it does seem that the space carved out for the care-free enjoyment of our favorite sports is shrinking a little bit every year. Sycophantic ESPN is being used to sell Obamacare in exchange for the president’s bracket picks. Obama’s now annual interview has been ruining the guacamole at Super Bowl parties since 2009. 

March 17, 2014, 12:14 PM EDT

In the never-ending search to find things to be offended by, part of the feminist left has determined that “bossy,” when applied to girls and women, is inappropriate. Really. There’s a whole campaign with big-name celebrities and liberal partners like Upworthy, Teach for America, La Raza, The Girl Scouts and the AARP. Beyoncé, Condoleezza Rice, Jennifer Garner and Jane Lynch have all signed on.

Apparently, when some girls are called “bossy,” they tend to behave less, well, bossy. That outcome is clearly detrimental to girls’ self esteem and willingness to take leadership roles. To which sensitive, informed Americans can only respond, “Huh?”

March 12, 2014, 8:32 AM EDT

So who ya gonna believe: Paramount or Director Darren Aronofsky?  Either “Noah” is sure to be a hit with the 86 percent of religious people who are aware of the film (Paramount), or it’s the “least Biblical Biblical film ever made” (Aronofsky).

It's all a bit confusing right now for the film whose ending has been reshot and recut, gone one way and another, signalled a Hollywood re-embrace of the Biblical epic or Hollywood imposing its values on the Good Book. Try to make sense of this March 11 paragraph from Huffpo:

March 10, 2014, 3:43 PM EDT

You’d think a show whose mission is to explore the unimaginable vastness of time and space wouldn’t waste a big chunk of its first episode on an obscure 400-year-old incident of negligible scientific significance. But hey, there’s always time to beat up on the church!

“Cosmos,” the new 13-part reboot of the old Carl Sagan show airing on Fox and the National Geographic Channel, is supposed to be “a celebration of wonder and awe.” But so far, it’s been predictable – especially in its politics. Viewers learn that “ancient forests grew and died and sank beneath the surface, their remains transformed into coal. 300 million years later, we humans are burning most of that coal to power and imperil our civilization.” And on Venus, “runaway greenhouse effect has turned it into a kind of hell.” (Damn you humans!) (video clips below the jump)

February 26, 2014, 12:36 PM EST

Is NBC crazy? In this day and age, it takes real chutzpa to develop a “provocative drama set against the backdrop of a prominent Michigan mosque where faith, family and corruption are explored in equal measure.” Wait, back that up. Replace “Michigan mosque” with “Texas church.” Now that makes sense.

Perhaps operating on the theory that pop culture just doesn’t do enough to stick it to Christians, NBC has green lighted “Salvation.” According to the Hollywood Reporter, “the pilot centers on Jennifer Strickland (Judd), who has to defend her children, church and religious beliefs after her husband dies under mysterious circumstances.” But since it stars erstwhile Democratic senate hopeful and moonbat liberal Ashley Judd, and its executive producer, David Janollari, was formerly the head of programming for MTV, its hard to imagine the show going to the barricades for “religious beliefs.”

February 11, 2014, 3:02 PM EST

Feel that? Something “historic” and “important” just happened. It might even be a “teachable moment,” and it’s certainly therapeutic. Why, liberals will be able to like their country just little bit more. Come on people, feel the love! 

A potential fourth round NFL draft pick has declared his “own truth,” and come out as gay. Having taken the “courageous” step of joining society’s most trendy and celebrated grievance group, Missouri defensive end Michael Sam is now basking in the media adulation.

February 6, 2014, 8:47 AM EST

Journalists love to preen as human rights watchdogs, congratulating themselves publicly for their roles – real or imagined – in securing the life and liberty of the downtrodden. That is, as long as it’s the right sort of downtrodden. 

Take, for example, NBC’s coverage in the run up to the Sochi Winter Olympics. Because of Russian restrictions on gays’ free speechfor homosexuals, the official Olympic network repeatedly fretted about gay “human rights.” NBC speculated about the rights and safety of gay athletes and visitors to Sochi, reported extensively on Russia’s gay community, talked to every gay athlete in the NBC phone book and hyped President Obama’s appointing of prominent gays to the U.S. Olympic Delegation. Network hosts also tried to encourage athletes to make pro-gay statements while at the Games, at the risk of disqualifying themselves from competition. Video after the break.

January 24, 2014, 10:08 AM EST

Know what’s really funny? Saying “vagina” a lot. And mocking the religious faith of others in service to your shallow ideology and your marginal comedy career.

So it’s really funny to be Sarah Silverman (except when it isn’t, because sometimes people can be so mean to an actress of a certain age.) For instance, she got to do a new anti-Christian, pro-abortion PSA in which she met Jesus – or as he called himself, “Jesus Fucking Christ.”

January 22, 2014, 11:30 AM EST

It’s been almost a year since Pope Francis began his pontificate, and the liberal media has hung on his every word, searching for evidence the head of the Church is an ideological, if not theological ally.

The results have sometimes been ridiculous, as when Reuters called the Pope’s recent strong condemnation of abortion “a nod to conservatives” to placate their “criticism.”

January 13, 2014, 5:01 PM EST

CNN’s Jake Tapper would have done well to read “Lone Survivor,” rather than just seeing the new movie, before interviewing former Navy SEAL Marcus Luttrell last week. If he had, Tapper might have been more careful than to describe the deaths of Luttrell’s SEAL comrades in Afghanistan as “senseless.” And he would have been wary of Luttrell’s contempt for the liberal media.

The film “Lone Survivor, which ” took in $38.5 million at the box office its opening weekend is based on a 2010 book by Luttrell that tells the tragic story of a 2005 operation in which the three other members of Luttrell’s SEAL team, along with 17 other special ops warriors, were killed. The story turned on the team’s agonized decision to turn lose some Afghan goat herders who had stumbled onto its concealed position. As the SEALs had feared, the freed civilians went straight to the Taliban, precipitating the battle.

December 18, 2013, 11:36 AM EST

They say tragedy plus time equals comedy. But is 27 years enough time? And what if the product isn’t comedy but another run-of-the-mill pop song about sex?

At the beginning of the song “XO” from her eponymous new album, pop star Beyoncé includes an odd sample: a few seconds of audio from the immediate wake of the space shuttle Challenger disaster. On Jan. 28, 1986, the Challenger exploded in mid air just 73 seconds into its flight, killing seven astronauts. The tragedy played out on live TV. Video after the break.

December 10, 2013, 9:04 AM EST

Saturday, Dec. 14 marks a year since the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. In the run-up to that tragic anniversary, Americans can expect to hear demands for gun control from sanctimonious Hollywood stars, just as they did in the wake of the shooting.

Their demands were hypocritical then, and they’re even more hypocritical now. The entertainment industry makes huge profits depicting and often even glorifying violence – especially gun violence. For proof, look no farther than the top TV dramas that anchor prime time for both the broadcast networks and basic cable channels. Video after the break.

November 18, 2013, 9:25 AM EST

It’s good to see the left finally upset about treasonous threats to the United States. Never really able to get worked up about communist spies, domestic terrorists or radical mosques, lefties – at least the ones at MSNBC – are sounding the alarm over … The Confederacy.

Everywhere the hosts and guests of MSNBC look they see gray and butternut – secessionists and white supremacists, wild-eyed states’ rights absolutists and grim Confederate holdouts plotting to dissolve the Union. Driven by racism and distrust of Washington, they form a “confederacy of hate.”

November 5, 2013, 8:50 AM EST

Oh look, Mike Wise is making more pronouncements about history. History, as in sports history: records, achievements, seasons, etc.? He’s a Washington Post sportswriter, after all.

No silly. The Most Important Sports Columnist in the World, Ever, is again passing judgment on anyone lagging behind history’s inexorable march into the glorious progressive future. In other words, his knickers are in a twist because the Washington Redskins are still called the Washington Redskins, despite the howling of liberal journalists like Wise and a handful of Native American activists.