As part of their "Education Nation" summit, NBC is granting a half-hour Matt Lauer interview on education to President Obama in the 8 am hour of Today on Monday.
Tim Graham is Executive Editor of NewsBusters and is the Media Research Center’s Director of Media Analysis. His career at the MRC began in February 1989 as associate editor of MediaWatch, the monthly newsletter of the MRC before the Internet era.
Graham is co-author with MRC president Brent Bozell of the books Collusion: How the Media Stole the 2012 Election and How To Prevent It From Happening Again in 2016 (2013) and Whitewash: What The Media Won’t Tell You About Hillary Clinton, But Conservatives Will (2007). He is also the author of the book Pattern of Deception: The Media's Role in the Clinton Presidency (1996).
Graham is a regular talk-radio and television spokesman for the MRC and has made television appearances on MSNBC, CNBC, CNN, Fox News, and the Fox Business Channel. His articles have appeared in The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Times, National Review, and other publications.
Graham left the MRC to serve in 2001and 2002 as White House Correspondent for World, a national weekly Christian news magazine. He returned in 2003. Before joining the MRC, Graham served as press secretary for the campaign of U.S. Rep. Jack Buechner (R-Mo.) in 1988, and in 1987, he served as editor of Organization Trends, a monthly newsletter on philanthropy and politics by the Washington-based Capital Research Center.
Mollie Hemingway at the religion-news analysis blog Get Religion caught how the taxpayer-funded liberals at National Public Radio cover momentous events for the Roman Catholic Church: by speculating that a historic Cardinal might have been a homosexual, even though they admit there's no proof:
On the final day of his United Kingdom trip, Pope Benedict XVI formally beatified English theologian and apologist Cardinal John Henry Newman. Let’s look at some of the stories about Newman. NPR’s excellent religion reporter Barbara Bradley Hagerty had a piece speculating that Newman was gay. I thought it a completely bizarre approach for the main story the news outlet chose to report on the man.
The piece itself acknowledges, eventually, that there’s no actual evidence for the claim. But that comes after the large point headline asks: "Was Cardinal John Henry Newman Gay?"
The Huffington Post would like to present itself as an oasis of religious tolerance. When they started their Religion section, Arianna Huffington decried that "all too often, when talking about it, we end up talking at each other instead of with each other." Weeks ago, they published Nida Khan lamenting conservative Islamophobia, as "a vocal minority of extremists to capitalize and advance on their bigotry and xenophobia." The writer cited Newt Gingrich and Sarah Palin, Rick Lazio and Peter King. That was one of many Huff-Po pieces feeling the pain of American Muslims, victims of vicious midterm politics.
But that same Huffington Post doesn't mind promoting "Rome-o-phobia," vile anti-Catholic screeds from bigoted leftists that just happened to enjoy ripping up a picture of Pope John Paul on national TV. Arianna Huffington published Sinead O'Connor's "An Open Letter to the Pope," carrying flagrantly false statements, such as "not one member of The Vatican has publicly displayed an iota of humility over this issue. Instead each person who has spoken has done so most arrogantly and dismissively."
Here's the latest line from O'Connor in the U.K. Guardian, where the headline says "The Vatican is a nest of devils." Or, to be more precise:
The Washington Post's undisguised loathing for conservative Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli is on display again Tuesday. Post reporter Anita Kumar put him on the "far right" and questioned the propriety (and even the constitutionality) of his working relationship with other Republicans in Richmond.
Kumar began by noting a list of Cuccinell's "controversial" legal opinions, that "police could check the immigration status of those stopped by law-enforcement officers, that the state could impose stricter oversight of clinics that perform abortions and that local governments could allow religious holiday displays on public property. In each instance, the request for the opinion came from the same person: Del. Robert G. Marshall (Prince William), a like-minded Republican who shares Cuccinelli's far-right views."
Kumar obviously asked it this "symbiotic relationship" was unconstitutional legal activism that goes around the legislature:
Washington Post media reporter Howard Kurtz wrote this howler today in a story on how MSNBC's leftishness rubs off on the mothership: "No one is suggesting Brian Williams's newscast had suddenly become biased."
That's right. Brian's show has been biased for a long time. But there's more comedy in how NBC News chief Steve Capus tries to suggest it's unfair to see NBC as liberal because of the ever-increasing left-wing shrillness quotient of MSNBC in prime time:
Capus concedes that MSNBC's lefty lineup at night--Ed Schultz, Chris Matthews, Keith Olbermann, Rachel Maddow and, as of next week, Lawrence O'Donnell--raises questions about NBC. But cable is "narrowcasting," he says, and "I think the audience gets it, pure and simple."
Fox News, he adds, is "trying to brand us" as a liberal broadcast network because of MSNBC. "It's a classic political tactic -- they don't like Keith Olbermann, they're going to come after us. It's annoying."
Former top Bush speechwriter Michael Gerson is a Washington Post columnist, and there is never a better time for right-leaning columnists to lean left than in the last weeks of an election season. (See George Will trashing Sen. George Allen in the last weeks of 2006.) His rant also may have granted Gerson a seat on CBS's Face the Nation on Sunday.
Gerson not only denounced Christine O'Donnell as a wacky candidate like Alan Keyes, he denounced "the childish political thought of the Tea Party." He insisted conservatives were like Bolsheviks. Bloggers like Michelle Malkin and talk show hosts like Mark Levin were "unhinged" against Karl Rove:
While Rove's critique was tough, the reaction in parts of the conservative blogosphere has been unhinged. Michelle Malkin wrote that it "might as well have been Olbermann on MSNBC." Mark Levin pronounced Rove at "war against the Tea Party movement and conservatives." "In terms of the conservative movement," wrote Dan Riehl, "we should not simply ignore him, but proactively work to undermine Rove in whatever ways we can, given his obvious willingness to undermine us."
Brian Maloney at the Radio Equalizer blog reports what should have been expected: Rosie O'Donnell hates Christine O'Donnell. "So she apparently has said some pretty crazy s--t," Rosie announced on her XM/Sirius satellite radio show Thursday. "Apparently, there's no chance a candidate like this can win. Is that what they're saying? I have a fear that the opposite may be true."
(Wild-eyed liberal radio host Mike Malloy denounced O'Donnell as only he can: "And then this freakish, Barbie-doll-looking-woman from Delaware -- where do these people come from?...These are robots, obviously. These are huge walking, farting dolls of some sort I guess.")
For "crazy" crap, Rosie's producers found a clip they said was "much more recent" than O'Donnell's chats with Bill Maher in 1996 -- but actually, it was from a C-SPAN interview on AIDS prevention programs from 1997. As summarized by the left-wingers at Talking Points Memo:
Sometimes, The Huffington Post just publishes stuff they should know can be objectively disproven. On Thursday, leftist author John Robbins wrote about people falsely accused of "eco-terrorism." But then he had to wrap up by suggesting something verifiably false:
As of Saturday, it ranked #5,920 on Amazon and #13,287 on Barnes & Noble. Perhaps Sanchez and his publishers at Penguin didn't realize that the title doesn't sound like a critique of someone else. It sounds like "Come buy 272 pages of idiocy." That might work for a comedian, but not for an anchorman. The shot at left is actually meant as a publicity shot to promote the book, not Sanchez's lack of savvy around electric cords.
The Smoking Gun relayed that photo and their take on Sanchez's titanic ego:
The Washington Post promoted the dueling Jon Stewart/Stephen Colbert liberal satirist rally on Saturday's front page with the blurb: "Comedy Central sets up opposing stunts in October. Your dilemma: Join Stewart's 'Million Moderates,' or Colbert 'Keep Fear Alive'?" What Post TV critic Lisa deMoraes discovered is that there are no moderates organizing this event on the last weekend before the midterm elections. Comedy Central is relying on two liberal Clintonistas:
We've discovered that a permit application was submitted for the Oct. 30 rally rivalry, on Sept. 8 to the National Park Service by Minassian Media, Comedy Central and Chris Wayne and Associates.
Craig Minassian is a former Clinton administration press aide who is now a consultant to Comedy Central. Wayne is a former Clinton White House event organizer who works on large-scale media events and promotions....
The PBS NewsHour tried to balance a conservative Republican with a liberal Democrat when it interviewed (on two different Thursdays) Dick Armey and Arianna Huffington. Left-wingers complained to PBS ombudsman Michael Getler that NewsHour anchor Judy Woodruff failed to press Armey about the Tea Party's funding from corporate billionaires. The far-left media monitors at FAIR wanted Woodruff to bash Armey as a hypocrite who benefits from government entitlements, like Bill Moyers did.
Getler's response was jaw-dropping. He claimed that PBS had failed to achieve balance, since Armey is conservative and Arianna Huffington is a centrist "and her widely viewed website strike me, as a reader, as an equal-opportunity critic. Armey is not. There are plenty of sharp, critical assessments of the Democratic Party and administration on her site." Doesn't it matter that those critics are banging away that Obama isn't socialist enough?
Worse yet, Getler said this should be "remedied" by bringing on another leftist, author Will Bunch of Media Matters for America, because Arianna was clearly not left-wing enough or critical enough of the Tea Party. Getler lamented that PBS has lost left-wing shows like Now and Bill Moyers Journal that are "not in the safe comfortable center."
On Friday, Washington Post media reporter Howard Kurtz wrote a "White House rips Forbes" article. Dinesh D'Souza has drawn a "torrent of criticism" for writing that President Obama is motivated by his African father's "anti-colonial" views, Kurtz wrote, but emphasized how the White House is training its fire on Forbes magazine for publishing it, suggesting it's un-factual. Obama spokesman Robert Gibbs asserted "It's a stunning thing, to see a publication you would see in a dentist's office, so lacking in truth and fact." (Has he read Newsweek?)
This isn't about "facts," it's about spins. D'Souza can be accused of putting the president on a psychoanalyst's couch about his father. (As if the media never did this for George W. Bush.) D'Souza shot back to Kurtz that it's simply a fact that the president had a Kenyan father. But Kurtz went into Gibbs-echoing rebuttal mode:
The facts are also these: Obama Sr. abandoned the family when his son was 2, and the future president saw his father only one more time, during a visit in Hawaii when he was 10. Obama Sr. died in 1982.
Gibbs says the Forbes attack comes at a time when there is "no limit to innuendo" against the president, including baseless charges that he is a Muslim and was not born in the United States. Forbes, he says, "left the facts on the cutting-room floor."
The Washington Post reported Friday that WJLA-TV, the local D.C. area affiliate of ABC, has fired longtime anchorman Doug McKelway for "insubordination and misconduct" after (or during?) an April report on left-wing oil spill protesters (video here):
In his piece, McKelway said the sparsely attended event attracted protesters "largely representing far-left environmental groups." [He cited Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth.] He went on to say the protest "may be a risky strategy because the one man who has more campaign contributions from BP than anybody else in history is now sitting in the Oval Office, President Barack Obama, who accepted $77,051 in campaign contributions from BP."
After a brief taped segment updating efforts to cap the BP well, McKelway added that the Senate was unlikely to pass "cap-and-trade" legislation this year, because "the Democrats are looking at the potential for huge losses in Congress come the midterm elections. And the last thing they want to do is propose a huge escalation in your electric bill, your utility bill, before then."
Liberal talk radio host Randi Rhodes rejoiced on Wednesday over victorious Tea Party candidates Carl Palladino ("a seriously creepy, creepy guy") and Christine O'Donnell ("you've got the anti-masturbation paranoid creationist lawyer where we could pick up a seat"). But Rhodes decided to go scabrously nasty and personal against O'Donnell, complete with flagrant virginity mockery:
By the way, Christine O'Donnell. It comes to my attention, uh, Deb tells me that Christine O'Donnell is not married....she's an unmarried woman. Hymen check! [plays popping noise] She'd better be a virgin! Right? With all this vitriol about sex and sexual thoughts and lust and not masturbating and it's wrong and what am I doing in the room...
I know she had a boyfriend. I know she did because her then-boyfriend -- then campaign manager -- purchased her house when her house was in foreclosure for her! Uh, do you think he did it with lust in his heart?
While most media outlets obsessed over the liberal theme that Republicans keep "suicidally" nominating "ultra-conservatives," Washington Post reporter Anne Kornblut, who authored a book earlier this year called Notes from the Cracked Ceiling, noticed a different trend. Her story was headlined "GOP gains the lead in female politicians' steps forward." Tuesday's victories of Palin-endorsed GOP women Christine O'Donnell and Kelly Ayotte underline an emerging Year of the Republican Woman. Too bad the Post buried it on Page A-6 of the paper, and it hasn't been linked on the Post's homepage today, either. Kornblut began:
Democrats used to own the field of women running for higher office. Not anymore.
Nearly two years after an anticipated gender bounce - with predictions that women in both parties would rush into politics inspired by Hillary Rodham Clinton and Sarah Palin -- it turns out that the momentum is on the Republican side. If there is a Palin effect, it is not being matched by any Clinton effect at the other end of the ideological spectrum.
On his national radio show Tuesday, Ed Schultz took a decidedly un-liberal view on the controversy over provocatively dressed Mexican sportscaster Ines Sainz being sexually harassed by players in the New York Jets locker room.
Yeah, she's going through jock strap heaven. She's in the locker room! (Laughs) There's been sexist comments in locker rooms since the day they started having sports! What does she expect?!
But when Schultz's own network, NBC, went looking for a soundbite for the "caveman" point of view on Wednesday's Today, they turned to Rush Limbaugh for scolding instead. Matt Lauer singled out Limbaugh as the sexist pig: "Everyone from Rush Limbaugh to late-night comedians are weighing in. And much of the attention is on what Ines Sainz wears instead of the football player's behavior. And is that fair? Does it matter what she had on? We're going to have more on that just ahead."
It could be a real contest for which thing Bill Maher said on CNN's Larry King Live was the most ridiculous. It began with the assertion "Christine O'Donnell, like all these tea baggers, has no plan, no agenda. No policy points. They have one advantage. They're running against Democrats. That's their big advantage."But for a sheer lack of factual grasp, it might be this statement, that domestic terrorism has apparently vanished under Obama: "And by the way, Obama has been president for 20 months and there has not been an attack. Bush was president for nine months when we got hit. So on that score, he's kept us safer." Did Maher sleep through the Fort Hood mass murder, not to mention the failed attacks in New York and Detroit? Larry King typically asked Maher about the "crazed fringe" on the right and their hatred of Obama. King never asked Maher about his own "crazed fringe" on the anti-Bush left suggesting the last president was a Nazi, a chimpanzee, and mentally ill or disabled:
On Tuesday, Washington Post media reporter Howard Kurtz publicized a forthcoming book by former TV producer/reporter Mark Feldstein on syndicated columnist Jack Anderson, a big star in the media firmament in the 1960s and 1970s. (He was an early featured player in ABC's Good Morning America.) Kurtz relayed how Feldstein found Anderson engaged in blackmail and bribery to get scoops, often designed to provide maximum embarrassment to Republicans.
People whose version of media history only includes the Woodwards and Bernsteins taking down Richard Nixon (for nothing more than their sheer love of country) might want to see just how Anderson worked hand in glove with Democrats, and cut a series of ethical corners:
Anderson's questionable tactics were visible as early as 1958, when he and a Democratic congressional investigator were caught with bugging equipment in the old Sheraton-Carlton Hotel, surreptitiously recording the businessman who bribed Sherman Adams, later forced to resign as President Dwight Eisenhower's chief of staff. This was a big break for Anderson, who was then the chief legman for columnist Drew Pearson.
Rev. Terry Jones may have announced on Saturday's Today that he wouldn't be burning any Korans, but on Sunday Today, NBC Meet the Press host David Gregory was suggesting Jones wasn't worthy of anyone's airtime: "I don't see why this pastor Jones has any sort of forum or any platform that's worthy of discussion."
Did Gregory lose that debate inside NBC?
When asked by anchor Jenna Wolfe about the Koran-burning controversy, Gregory insisted that President Obama's opposition will have a "big impact," and yet, when asked if this incident would hurt America abroad, he didn't think so (after all, Obama has been so effective at that outreach to the Muslim world):
Rev. Al Sharpton, last seen leading a small leftist counter-protest of Glenn Beck's rally in Washington on August 28, complained on his radio show Friday that Rev. Terry Jones shouldn't have gotten media attention because he's doing "nothing but hatemongering." (Al Sharpton, by contrast, is the Apostle of Love.)
A lot of people wonder why we in civil rights get attention. Now we can produce our following and our members, tens of thousands of people at marches, all kind of stuff and we project an issue that helps people and they say we get too much media coverage. This guy in Florida is doing nothing but hatemongering, has fifty members on a good Sunday and the whole world is standing still. And y’all wonder why I say the media is imbalanced and unfair.
Turning to Smokey Fontaine of the black website NewsOne.com, Sharpton complained that even Barack Obama was forced to address Jones at his press conference: