If journalism school began with a course on Avoiding Puff Pieces, they could use as text this Sunday New York Times article by Michael Schulman: “Ronan Farrow: The Youngest Old Guy in the Room.” MSNBC’s newest star is puffed as large as the Sta-Puf Marshmallow Giant in "Ghostbusters." It invites the neologism "Ipe-cackle." It's so vomitous it's humorous.
This is how it started: “‘Wow, he’s handsome,’ one dinner guest said, peering over a throng of photographers. ‘He’s going to be our president in, like, 30 years,’ another gushed.” It was all downhill from there, at increasing speed:
The weekly “Date Lab” feature in The Washington Post Magazine rarely goes well. The blind dates routinely fail or the connection fizzles after the first meeting. But Sunday’s meeting was a big hit – between "two women with unconventional outlooks," Kristin Richards and Megan Caine, who Kristin found "sexy" for having a shaved head.
But it was the small-type, post-blind-date update for the Sunday feature that really packed a punch. A threesome? “The two of them decided to add a third for their next date at a neighborhood bar.”
When George W. Bush's faith-based initiative staffer David Kuo came out with a book whacking away at Bush, the media were enthralled (excerpted lovingly by Time magazine and interviewed on 60 Minutes). Now under Obama, they're helping former faith-based initiatives director Joshua Dubois sell his new book "The President's Devotional." In Saturday's Washington Post, religion reporter Elizabeth Tenety asked questions that made it sound like Dubois wrote his own questions: "Let’s talk about your work with the Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships. What are you most proud of from your time there?"
On the PBS NewsHour Wednesday, anchor Gwen Ifill danced politely around Obama's rare church attendance (especially compared to his golf course time), and raised Rev. Jeremiah Wright just as a time when prayer helped Obama, not as a time Dubois admitted in his book that he wanted to spin around the whole truth:
At Yahoo News, former ABC and CBS political producer Marc Ambinder picked apart a Time magazine article by Jay Newton-Small triumphantly headlined “In Shutdown, Women are the Only Adults Left.” It was so pro-“chick” that “Several women rights' groups, like EMILY's List, picked up the story for use in fundraising.” (Newton-Small reported only two of the 20 female senators – Kelly Ayotte and Debbie Fischer -- are pro-life. All 16 Democrats favor abortion.)
Ambinder rejected this article primarily because the Democrats weren’t “equally childish” to the conservative Republicans, and because the “childlike qualities” of the hardest-headed Democrats were “absolutely essential” to winning:
On his Fox Business show Thursday night, Neil Cavuto was shocked by the turn-around in The New York Times on Obamacare: “Look at this front page headline: ‘Health law fails to lower prices for rural areas; Poor often pay more.’” He cracked: “To media watcher Brent Bozell, who read that headline, and subsequently fainted.”
Cavuto told Bozell, the Media Research Center's president: “Something’s going on here, and methinks it’s the Left reassessing everything.” Brent offered to buy Cavuto ten beers if "a single one of these reporters" actually admit the Republicans were right in the shutdown to demand a delay of Obamacare: (Transcript and video below):
Leftist trial lawyer and bomb thrower Mike Papantonio filled in on the Ed Schultz radio show on Wednesday. With all of Obama's troubles, a black caller started telling some story about his dad's health care troubles in 1970 and then reliably blamed today's troubles, like then, on “systematic racism. They’d prefer to have the country go down the tubes, rather than have this guy in office.”
Like many liberals, Papantonio said the South went Republican under Reagan because his campaign aide Lee Atwater said “let me tap into that hate.” But then the "Pap smears" really started flying, as somehow most of the South is still so racist they might as well burn "KKK" across the top of their Baptist churches:
Secular feminist media outlets never saw rational objections to the conflict between Georgetown University as a college affiliated with the Catholic Church and Georgetown Law student Sandra Fluke demanding insurance coverage for contraceptions and gender-reassignment surgery.
So they won't care about Matthew Archbold's new Georgetown scoop for Catholic Education Daily. A class at Georgetown Law next semester "will have students working with a pro-abortion rights advocacy organization, taught by that organization's senior counsel, Kelli Garcia." The project is advocating the implementation of Obamacare:
Fox News anchor Neil Cavuto told him to shut up, but British actor/comedian Russell Brand announced on BBC Newsnight that British prime minister "David Cameron says profit isn't a dirty word, well I say profit is a filthy word." Celebrity Net Worth says Brand is worth $15 million, and could more than double that in his divorce settlement with pop star Katy Perry.
Brand insisted on "massive redistribution of wealth" and profit "hugely reduced," so why not start with actors? (Video below)
Last Thursday and Friday, the Washington Post's Express tabloid showed a major contrast between a GOP elephant waving a white flag, and then Vice President Joe Biden triumphantly handing out muffins at the post-shutdown EPA.
Another, even stronger contrast emerged on the news stands of DC on Tuesday and Wednesday after it became apparent to absolutely everyone that the Obamacare website was a fiasco. Obama was a cheerleader on Tuesday; on the next day, the Republican elephant was dead or dying.
Chris Matthews was deeply satisfied by the New York Times publishing an op-ed Wednesday they titled "The Cry of the True Republican" by John G. Taft, a descendent of our fattest president, William Howard Taft. "The body blows to the Republican Party just keep on coming," Matthews announced on Wednesday night's "Hardball."
This "stalwart Republican" suddenly sounds like a Xerox copier of the half-witticisms of Chris Matthews, as if Matthews was quoting himself on the air: "There is more than a passing similarity between Joseph McCarthy and Ted Cruz, between McCarthyism and the Tea Party movement." This is not the same John G. Taft as the guy who wrote for Forbes just last December that our spending addiction needed fixing:
With its hippie origins, it probably shouldn't be surprising that Rolling Stone magazine thinks that a responsible journalist recognizes that "right-wing extremists" are truth-deprived, and should therefore be censored out of the conversation.
In the October 24 edition of the magazine, leftist historian Sean Wilentz wrote an article on "Right-wing extremism and the lessons of history." Apparently, one of those lessons is that America is let down by the press and its "twisted objectivity" where "falsehoods get reported as simply one side of an argument." A "reform" strategy for Republicans and America would banish such nonsense from "news" pages:
Beware leftist bloggers and tweeters who are dumb enough to link to this website: The Duffel Blog and its report "Rush Limbaugh Calls Troops ‘Welfare Queens, Moochers’." For the appearance of facticity, “Dick Scuttlebutt” reported “The comments came during Limbaugh’s second hour on Monday.” But on Monday, Limbaugh was "under the weather" and guest host Mark Steyn was on the air. Daily Kos was among the lefty blog sites that eagerly picked up this false nugget. The fact that there was no audio didn't discourage them.
The problem? The Duffel Blog calls itself "The military version of The Onion" and says it broke the story of President John Adams and his cocaine habit. The Duffel Blog "satire" claimed a retired Army master sergeant called the Limbaugh show and endorsed Obamacare, which allegedly caused Rush to denounce and demean the military for all the free stuff they get and their "years-long paid vacations to exotic foreign lands."
Marisa Guthrie of The Hollywood Reporter landed an interview with Patricia Fili-Krushel, chairman of NBCUniversal News Group, who is in charge not only of NBC News, but CNBC, MSNBC, and their websites.
Fili-Krushel admitted that MSNBC loses to CNN in breaking news situations because “Viewers are coming for MSNBC’s personalities,” and also touted that newly hired 25-year-old host Ronan Farrow “can go from Syria to Kim Kardashian and be credible, and he’s got a huge social following.” This came up in a discussion of MSNBC rating dips:
NPR is looking quite desperate in its promotion of Obamacare. This was an actual headline at the NPR website: "Despite Glitches, HealthCare.gov Could've Been Worse." Jonah Goldberg told me "I thought you made up that headline!" He cracked on Twitter: "For instance, logging on could have permanently blinded you!"
On Tuesday night's All Things Considered, anchor Melissa Block borrowed this oddly optimistic concept inside the liberal bubble from Rusty Foster of The New Yorker magazine. He said "I'm sort of amazed at how well it does work, actually, which is, you know, where it kind of -- it could've been worse." They needed more time, he protested:
On the "Headlines" on his web page, HBO “Real Time” host Bill Maher reports that for his upcoming show in Springfield, Massachusetts, “the Massachusetts Democratic Party has a limited number of tickets available.”
Because Democrats love it when Maher goes on Twitter with vile thoughts like how Tea Party wives think of Rand Paul or Ted Cruz “when their husband is humping them”:
Fresh from his gooey front-pager on how "everyone seems to be honoring" Hillary Clinton on the way to 2016, Washington Post reporter Philip Rucker is now seeing dark clouds for the re-election of Tea Party Sen. Mike Lee. "In Utah GOP, some seek to shut down tea party hero" is the Page One headline.
"Lee's approval ratings in Utah have cratered," Rucker wrote, citing a less-reliable online poll, and talking up a primary challenge from more "pragmatic" Republicans....in 2016. Lined up to denounce Lee as an "ideological wack-job," the Post-friendly Jon Huntsman:
Left-wingers like to imagine Rupert Murdoch as some sort of James Bond villain – a global media mogul who ruins the international socialist agenda with feisty tabloids and right-wing TV hacks.
No one imagines that more than National Public Radio, which fired Juan Williams for daring to associate with “The O’Reilly Factor.” NPR media correspondent David Folkenflik has obsessed over Murdoch for years and now has a new book out called “Murdoch’s World.” On Monday’s Morning Edition, NPR promoted its own reporter’s book, and his finding that “there’s a cruelty to his journalism,” that he’s “punitive” with political opponents.
For anyone who thought WikiLeaks was a fascinating cinematic subject, The Hollywood Reporter is already offering an obituary: “The Fifth Estate quickly died, grossing a paltry $1.7 million from 1,769 theaters -- the worst opening of the year so far for a movie opening in more than 1,500 theaters.”
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has repeatedly criticized Bill Condon's film for Disney’s Touchstone label for a slanted presentation of himself and WikiLeaks. At one point, he even wrote a note to actor Benedict Cumberbatch asking the actor to drop out of the movie.
MSNBC’s “All In With Chris Hayes” hosted two Republican refugees on Thursday night, starting with former Reaganite Bruce Bartlett, whose favorite word for conservatives on Twitter is “wankers.” Then came his "dittohead" Michelle Bernard.
Bartlett pleased Hayes oh so much by insisting “There are no moderate Republicans” because no one will stand up and denounce the Tea Partiers because “they're so afraid to speak out and say that their party has been hijacked by crazy people, stupid people.”
Leftist amnesty-pushing Rep. Luis Gutierrez of Chicago is either a rooster or a civil rights idol, according to his journalistic booster Manuel Roig-Franzia of The Washington Post. This is the same reporter that's tried to trash Sen. Marco Rubio for allegedly lying about his parents.
"The 59-year-old Illinois congressman stands 5 feet 6 inches tall, which is only one reason he got his nickname, 'El Gallito' — the little fighting rooster,” oozed the front-page Style section story on Monday. He’s either a chicken...or the Latino Martin Luther King? That's right, the Puerto Rican MLK:
Uh-oh, Tina Fey is going for laughs as funny as "rape kit" jokes again at a supposedly staid PBS event. Just as she bashed pro-life Sarah Palin when she won the Kennedy Center’s Mark Twain Prize for American Humor in 2010 (which PBS edited out), Lisa de Moraes at Deadline Hollywood reports Fey whacked at Ted Cruz when Carol Burnett was awarded the same prize.
Fey cracked: “Enough politics. We are here tonight to celebrate the First Lady of American Comedy, Ted Cruz.” That's a guaranteed side-splitter if you think Chris Matthews is profound. Even Burnett made a vague joke about clownish politicians:
"The Bush administration opened with a second Pearl Harbor, ended with a second Great Crash and contained a second Vietnam in the middle." That sounds like a liberal. Guess what? It is. David Frum was selected by the New York Times to review a new book on Bush by New York Times reporter Peter Baker. This arrangement is so cozy that Frum admits that Baker interviewed him for this masterpiece.
While this was supposedly about the last decade, Frum was even allowed the requisite rhetorical machete-swinging against today’s avatars of a “radical brand of conservatism” that can’t win elections and couldn’t govern if it did:
Like many a liberal blowhard, Fox’s Geraldo Rivera grabbed estimates from financial analysts that the government shutdown cost the economy billions of dollars. On his radio show Thursday, Geraldo decided he wanted to send the entire bill to Sen. Ted Cruz.
Geraldo also hosted CNN anchor Don Lemon who claimed to disavow “any political affiliation,” and then trashed the Republicans for holding “the American people hostage,” which is “not the American way”:
The Washington Post was showing its soft spot for atheists again in Saturday’s Metro section. Blogger Hemant Mehta (“The Friendly Atheist”) wanted to chew out Oprah Winfrey.
Mr. Friendly was flustered when Oprah told distance swimmer Diana Nyad that she couldn’t be an atheist if she found joy and mystery in nature. He then lectured Oprah that she wouldn’t dismiss bisexuals or moderate Republicans like that:
When Obamacare was signed by the president in 2010, NPR marked how its health reporter Julie Rovner had a "picture perfect day," and took a snapshot. She "was all smiles when asked about how important this day was to her.” She said: “It's the first month of my twenty-five years covering health policy...and I did not intend to miss this event!”
So it’s not surprising that she would write a blog on how utterly conservatives failed to nick Obamacare in the shutdown fight – or as she called it, “their 16-day tirade against the government.”
Several Washington Post journalist/operatives are also teaching in the Karen Tumulty School of Unselfishly Un-electing The Tea Party. In Sunday’s paper, columnist David Ignatius (formerly a Post foreign editor and assistant managing editor for business news) penned a piece titled “Disarming the RINO Hunters.”
“Many Republicans have been muttering over the past few weeks of political craziness that the tea party’s hold on the GOP must be broken to protect their party’s health — not to mention the country’s,” Ignatius huffed. “So I’ve been asking people what a movement to break the extremists’ power would actually look like.” Guess who he asked for expertise?
Chris Noth, a star of “The Good Wife” on CBS, isn’t as restrained a politician in real life as he is on TV. Black leftist Marc Lamont Hill spotlighted him as "fascinating" on HuffPost Live for tweeting: “Highest level of racism was showed yesterday when Republicans forced a shutdown of our government. Mostly because our President is black.”
Noth also tweeted“Every Tea Party member should be horsewhipped.” That wasn’t quoted by Hill. But Noth unloaded all the junk about Obama opponents being Confederates, and being un-American for opposing Obama and should "succeed" [sic] from the Union:
If there’s a superhero that NPR can get behind, it would have to be “Feminist Hulk.” He doesn’t smash abortion clinic protesters. This hero apparently defends food stamps and WIC subsidies, so the shutdown added liberal luster. The NPR Morning Edition Facebook page merely said “Feminist Hulk!”
“Feminist Hulk is Jessica Lawson, a doctoral student in English literature at the University of Iowa who's also a mother and WIC aid recipient,” writes NPR food blogger Kate Woodsome. “She first started tweeting against sexism in 2010 – her Twitter profile reads “HULK SAYS F*** PATRIARCHY. HULK SMASH GENDER BINARY.’”