Tom Blumer has written for several national online publications  primarily on business, economics, politics and media bias. He has had his own blog, BizzyBlog.com, since 2005, and has been with NewsBusters since December 2005. Along the way, he's had a decades-long career in accounting, finance, training and development.

Latest from Tom Blumer
January 31, 2016, 11:45 AM EST

Those in the press who have insisted that the "Ferguson effect" is an urban legend will have a hard time explaining why the two cities with the most potential to be affected by this supposedly mythical phenomenon now have murder rates among the top 20 in the entire world.

St. Louis, Missouri, next door to Ferguson, where a leftist-"inspired" campaign of "protests," civil disorder and rioting began in August 2014, came in at Number 15, with a rate of 59 murders per 100,000 residents. The city's 188 murders in 2015 were up from 159 in 2014 and 120 in 2013. Baltimore, Maryland, where Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake infamously admitted in April 2015, as public safety was deteriorating in her city, that "we also gave those who wished to destroy space to do that," was Number 19, with 344 murders (a rate of 55 per 100,000).

January 30, 2016, 11:56 PM EST

Observers can be excused for thinking that the politicial establishment is preparing the battlespace to convince us plebes that progress and economic growth are overrated. (That's sort of odd for people who call themselves "progressives," but making sense is not their strong suit.)

How interesting, for example, that Northwestern University economist Robert Gordon's book, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, was released on January 12, even though, as Bloomberg writer Noah Smith notes, Gordon "has been going around for several years making ... (the) case (that) ... the golden days of growth are over." Just in time for the arrival of a more visibly weak economy, Gordon's premise has been getting wildly disproportionate press attention. Smith goes further in his "Economic Growth Isn't Everything" column, referring to "the illusion of stagnation" (i.e., don't believe those weak stats, even if they go negative; everything is really fine), while reminding us of the supposedly marvelous things government has done and supposedly can still do for us.

January 30, 2016, 9:24 PM EST

As has been its habit during the Obama administration when the economy turns in a poor performance, the press's coverage of yesterday's report on U.S. economic growth focused on how much better next quarter's news will supposedly be. Especially in this instance, the beat reporters and pundits should have looked at whether or not yesterday's initial result will hold up, or whether it's likely to be revised downward.

The government's Bureau of Economic Analysis reported yesterday that the economy grew at an annualized rate of 0.7 percent in last year's fourth quarter. That's bad enough, but statements published by a leading GDP prognosticator before the BEA's release, once applied to yesterday's data, foreshadow a distinct possilbity that February's or March's revision will come in with a minus sign preceding it.

January 30, 2016, 10:25 AM EST

Friday morning, the government reported that the economy grew at a pathetic annual rate of 0.7 percent in last year's final quarter.

As it did in covering the disappointing Christmas shopping season, the business press partially blamed yesterday's awful result on the weather, i.e., warm weather.

January 29, 2016, 11:59 PM EST

This afternoon, Catherine Herridge at Fox News reported that "the intelligence community has deemed some of Hillary Clinton’s emails 'too damaging' to national security to release under any circumstances."

This eighth "smoking gun" — on top of the seven an Investor's Business Daily editorial identified last week — wasn't enough to move the Associated Press Bradley Klapper from the AP's default position virtually since Mrs. Clinton's private email server was discovered, naturally referencing unidentified "independent experts," namely that "it's unlikely Clinton will be charged with wrongdoing."

January 28, 2016, 11:55 PM EST

The Associated Press may be down to one person in the whole wide world who will tell its economics reporters what they want to hear when the federal government releases economic data. That's what you almost have to conclude after reading the wire service's reports on two of Thursday's major releases, namely last week's initial unemployment claims and December's durable goods orders and shipments.

The only outside source AP reporters Christopher Rugaber and Martin Crutsinger consulted in their respective reports about initial claims and durables was one Ian Shepherdson, chief economist with Pantheon Macroeconomics. Naturally, Sheperdson was sunnyside-up despite relatively troubling news in each area.

January 28, 2016, 8:32 AM EST

The hype machine was in overdrive at the Associated Press on Wednesday as economics reporter Josh Boak covered the government's mid-morning release on new-home sales.

Boak opened by writing that "Americans rushed to buy new homes in December at the strongest pace in 10 months." Good heavens, we're talking about only 38,000 individuals or families, or about 0.031 percent of the nation's roughly 123 million households. While that's a bit of an improvement over previous months — which is why that number converted to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 544,000, the highest figure since February — it's hardly the stampede implied by the AP reporter's use of the word "rushed."

January 28, 2016, 12:00 AM EST

Critics who warned in 2010 that the odious Dodd-Frank law's Consumer Financial Protection Bureau would become a rogue agency which would become a largely unaccountable behemoth on a mission to create problems where none exist could not have been more correct.

Sadly, searches on terms relevant to one of the agency's latest controversies involving the distribution of funds in a two year-old auto-loan industry settlement indicate that only two media outlets have given it any attention; separately, a search at the Associated Press on the agency's name also returns nothing relevant. Those two sources are the Daily Caller, whose January 21 story first reported that "White loan borrowers are collecting settlement proceeds ... intended for black, Hispanic and Asian people," and a Monday Investor's Business Daily editorial. That's it.

January 27, 2016, 3:39 PM EST

If you only read establishment press reports, you might (finally) know about the "unexpectedly" competitive race for the Democratic Party's presidential nomination, but you would have no sense of the deep concern within the left's ranks about their unsavory choices.

Card-carrying lefty Dana Milbank, from his perch at the Washington Post, laid that near-panic bare in his Tuesday evening column. It's an indication of just how bad things are that in going after Bernie Sanders as someone "Democrats would be insane to nominate," Milbank had to completely ignore Hillary Clinton's growing legal exposure over having her own private email server while she was the nation's Secretary of State. For Milbank, it comes down to this: Bernie Sanders is unwilling to lie to America's voters about his and the left's true agenda, but Hillary Clinton is — at least through November 8. This makes Mrs. Clinton his preferred choice.

January 27, 2016, 1:03 AM EST

Barely making the Associated Press's top 10 U.S. stories list shortly after 11 p.m. Eastern Time is a story about the arrest and indictment of Samy Mohamed Hamzeh in Milwaukee. With informants posting as co-conspirators, Hamzeh intended to carry out a massacre of "at least 30 people" at "a Masonic temple in Milwaukee," intending to kill "everyone they saw," and to then "walk away from the scene as if nothing had happened."

It's clear from the AP story by Greg Moore and Todd Richmond that the pair read the actual indictment, as they grabbed quotes from Hamzeh found there which are not present in the joint Department of Justice/FBI press release. What's odd is that they used one of them twice, while they chose to ignore other provocative statements quoted in the indictment.

January 25, 2016, 7:09 PM EST

In an unexpected development which may ultimately qualify as a "be careful what you wish for" exercise, the District Attorney in Harris County, Texas, whose county seat is Houston, has indicted Center for Medical Progress videographers David Daleiden and Sandra Merritt.

Yes you read that right, via coverage in the Houston Chronicle (bolds are mine):

January 25, 2016, 5:28 PM EST

Over the past several months, economics reporters at the Associated Press have told us time and time and time again that the U.S. economy is "largely insulated" from adverse economic developments overseas.

So why is the AP's Martin Crutsinger going along with the now-shifting conventional "wisdom" that Janet Yellen's Federal Reserve may have to defer implementing additional interest-rate increases for quite some time because of what the wire service headlined as a "darker global economy"? The obvious answer is that the U.S. economy is also weak, and the business press simply won't admit it.

January 25, 2016, 2:29 PM EST

The Des Moines Register likely broke new ground when it endorsed Hillary Clinton for the Democratic presidential nomination on Saturday. The Register may be the first major newspaper to endorse a major-party presidential candidate under investigation by the FBI at the time of the endorsement.

The time stamp at the editorial's link is currently and inexplicably this morning, but pundits and bloggers have been commenting on it for two days, and Google News says the endorsement is from "2 days ago." This time disconnect seems fitting, as it reflects how disconnected from reality the Register's editorial board had to be on so many levels to make its endorsement. Let's look at just one of them, namely Mrs. Clinton's admitted use of a private email server to conduct government business when she was President Barack Obama's Secretary of State.

January 25, 2016, 12:43 AM EST

Tricia Bishop is back.

The Baltimore Sun deputy editorial page editor and columnist, who on January 7 advocated "a gun owner registry available to the public online — something like those for sex offenders," posted a follow-up on Friday, claiming that "Gun control advocates (are) the silent majority." Bishop is clearly put off by the ferocity of the blowback she received for advocating that the whole wide world — which she somehow forgets includes stalkers, leftist intimidators, criminals who would like to steal guns, and other criminals who would like to target the unarmed — should be able to know who does and doesn't own a gun in the U.S. Well, ma'am, you really didn't think that everyone you would like to expose for exercising their Second Amendment rights using a "model" similar to that employed for sex offenders would just sit there and take it, did you?

January 23, 2016, 10:14 AM EST

On January 26, 2006, former Vice President, current climate alarmist and centimillionaire Al Gore told the Associated Press's David Germain that "unless drastic measures to reduce greenhouse gases are taken within the next 10 years, the world will reach a point of no return."

Tuesday, as DC and much of the Northeast finishes digging out from a serious and possibly historic weekend snowstorm, will be the tenth anniversary of Gore's "planetary emergency" warning. The "global warming" true believers in the establishment press will never hold Gore accountable for his nonsense, which is why going to alternative sources such as the editorials at Investor's Business Daily is so necessary. On Friday, IBD called Gore out, identifying "Five Ways We Know Al Gore’s Been Running A Global Warming Racket" (links are in original; bolds are mine):

January 22, 2016, 11:01 PM EST

These people play the press and the courts like a fiddle.

At 2 p.m. Friday — just in time for a slow-news weekend and the onset of what is supposed to be a serious blizzard in the Northeast — the State Department asked a federal court for an extension of time to February 29 to complete its interagency review and release of Hillary Clinton's private-server emails. But State didn't merely use the snowstorm to minimize news visibility. In the court filing, it also cited the weekend snowstorm as a reason why it can't its work done:

January 22, 2016, 9:00 PM EST

It would appear that the incurably leftist UK Guardian can be tougher on a Democratic Party presidential candidate than the U.S. establishment press.

The Guardian, the perch from which Edward Snowden exposed the activities of America's National Security Agency in June 2013, had reporter Adam Gabbatt at Democrat presidential candidate Hillary Clinton's Iowa City campaign appearance. The couple of U.S. press reports which noted that Mrs. Clinton spoke for less than five minutes seemed not to think that such a short speech was unusual. Additionally, only Gabbatt did the obviously necessary follow-up to see how the audience felt about getting so little attention from Her Majesty (bolds are mine). They weren't thrilled:

January 22, 2016, 6:13 PM EST

When the Associated Press issues a brief unbylined report on an obviously important matter, one's first instinct should always be to ask: "What are they deciding not to tell us?"

More often than not, the answer is "Plenty." An example justifying the need to look further appeared this morning when the wire service published a five-paragraph report on inflation in Venezuela's economy:

January 22, 2016, 12:16 PM EST

It would appear that the New York Times and MSNBC, in focusing on Hillary Clinton's speaking fees, are, after many months of serving as virtual Clinton campaign mouthpieces, beginning to hedge their bets in the race for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination. This information has been available since last spring, but only now is it being seen as geuinely troubling. Why wasn't seen as a big problem when it was first revealed?

In May of last year, Times reporters Maggie Habermann and Stephen Eder conceded that the speaking fees charged by Mrs. Clinton and her husband Bill, which have averaged roughly $250,000, "could create challenges for the former secretary of state as she tries to cast herself as a champion of everyday Americans in an era of income inequality." My, how the tone has changed now that Mrs. Clinton's coronation has become less than seemingly certain.

January 21, 2016, 6:42 PM EST

You could have set your watch to it. When a leftist local, gubernatorial or presidential regime enters its final year after demonstrating its corruption, incompetence and inexcusable disrespect for law and procedure to that point, someone in the press will directly or indirectly excuse them by saying that the entity that person is running is "ungovernable," or that "its best days are behind it."

President Barack Obama hit the one-year-to-go mark for his second term yesterday. On cue, Eduardo Porter at the New York Times told readers that "America’s Best Days May Be Behind It." Naturally, Porter did not mention Obama's name, nor did he cite Obama's outsized contribution to why that may be the case.