In a sidebar to People magazine’s softball interview/cover story – with People’s Sondra Sobieraj Westfall making inquiries like “What kind of grandma will you be?” – they honored “15 Women Changing the World Right Now,” including gay “equality crusader” Mary Bonauto and “mom against gun violence” Shannon Watts.
Then there’s a list of “Hillary’s Picks,” for “some of the women whose lives have inspired her own.” There’s Burmese dissident Aung Sun Suu Kyi, and German prime minister Angela Merkel, and ...Russian punk rockers Pussy Riot:
Often, the climactic question-and-answer round of beauty pageants is a recipe for loaded questions (take Perez Hilton) or uneducated answers. On Sunday night’s Miss USA broadcast, The Right Scoop points out that Miss Louisiana, Brittany Guidry, was put on the spot about the Obama administration’s swap of Bowe Bergdahl for five Taliban terrorists.
Like a politician, Guidry said she was glad Bergdahl came home, but we should not “subject ourselves” to terrorist demands. The crowd went wild there in Baton Rouge (video below):
CNN made a big deal on Wednesday afternoon about how almost all of Hillary Clinton’s TV interviews are with females: ABC’s Diane Sawyer and Robin Roberts, Jane Pauley for CBS, CNN’s Christiane Amanpour NBC’s Cynthia McFadden, and Fox’s Greta Van Susteren is pairing up with Bret Baier, the only male on the list.
With Fox excluded, every one of these interviewers have offered softball interviews to Mrs. Clinton over her 20-plus years on the national scene, but for some reason, CNN’s 28-year-old "senior media correspondent" Brian Stelter tried to talk up how these female-on-female interviews might be loaded with tough questions. Laugh track, anyone? (Video below):
Matthew Kassel at theNew York Observer reports that The New York Times has created an innovative new beat for a reporter named Mosi Secret: sin and vice.
“I always thought that one of the more compelling things you could ever cover in New York was sin,” city editor Dean Chang told the Observer. So Secret wrote a long story for the front of last Sunday’s Metro section on an underground strip club/brothel titled “A Strip Club in Manhattan Proves That Vice Is Hard to Kill.”
On ABC’s “The View,” they’ve already advertised their Diane Sawyer interview with Hillary Clinton, promoting her memoir of her State Department years, Hard Choices. An announcer says: “Monday night. Hillary Clinton. You know her life, public and private, both filled with hard choices. But what don't you know? Now she talks about it all. Nothing off limits. A Diane Sawyer exclusive. Monday at 9, 8 Central on ABC.”
This is almost exactly what ABC promised in 2003, advertising a two-hour Hillary special with Barbara Walters. (Video below)
The Smoking Gun reports that with his ugly divorce trial looming, leftist filmmaker Michael Moore is battling his wife over the valuation of the couple’s assets, while branding her a spendthrift who “unilaterally wasted a large percentage of the marital funds” building a lakefront mansion that has prompted mocking news stories about Moore's millions.
More of interest to NewsBusters readers is that Moore’s wife, Kathleen Glynn, noted that Moore was offered funding for another anti-gun movie about the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting just three days after the horror unfolded:
ABC is running a promo strangely claiming no topic is “off limits” in Diane Sawyer’s Hillary Clinton interview. “No questions off limits,” promised substitute anchor David Muir on Friday’s World News.
But in an excerpt shown on Friday night, Sawyer sticks to questions so short they barely count as sentences. She’s not an interviewer. She’s just a facilitator. It’s another puff job, even if Diane keeps a dour face on (video, transcript by Matthew Balan below):
The liberals at National Public Radio can’t really imagine guns being necessary for anything...unless perhaps it’s to keep Southern segregationists at bay.
On Thursday afternoon’s Tell Me More talk show, host Michel Martin brought on Charles Cobb, who wrote the book This Nonviolent Stuff'll Get You Killed: How Guns Made The Civil Rights Movement Possible. She called it a “hiding in plain sight story” and asked why he wrote the book:
For most of this week, the front page of The New York Times has been trying to dig out Team Obama on the Bowe Bergdahl scandal. So it might be unsurprising that pseudo-conservative Times columnist David Brooks is echoing his "objective" colleagues in a Friday column simply titled "President Obama Was Right."
This isn't just a blatantly baked spin blossom for the Times. It might naturally spur Brooks to be asked to "complete the thought" about Obama being correct on his Friday "week in review" platforms on NPR's All Things Considered and the PBS NewsHour.
The New York Times knows just how to rebuild the Republican Party in California...in the image of The New York Times. In Thursday’s paper, correspondent Norimitsu Onishi highlighted the Republican nominee for governor, Neel Kashkari, “a social moderate backed by the Republican establishment.”
“Social moderate”? In the next paragraph, we learn Kashkari “is of Indian descent and supports same-sex marriage and abortion rights, all positives for a party that has been steadily losing influence because of California’s increasingly diverse and liberal electorate.” So he is a social liberal, which the Times thinks is where all “moderates” belong. He's not one of those unelectable "Anglo" conservatives.
Planned Parenthood likes to paint itself as a crucial provider of affordable women's health care to the poor. But it also aids the rich. JillStanek.com reports that the Planned Parenthood Federation of America’s 2012 IRS Form 990 shows that CEO Cecile Richards made over one-half million dollars – $523,616 – for the fiscal year ending on June 30, 2013.
In fact, for that 2012 reporting period, PPFA’s 12-member executive team tallied a combined income of $3.87 million.
On Tuesday night’s PBS NewsHour, a panel of journalists were exploring how Democratic candidates for the Senate were going to struggle with Obama’s new crackdown on coal plants. PBS anchor Gwen Ifill even said, “why then does the White House rub salt into the wound on this issue? Why make it so hard for Democrats especially?”
Washington Post reporter Reid Wilson replied that Obama wants it for his legacy as his term winds down, and reminded Ifill that he said his time would be when the planet starts to heal: [See video below.]
Alana Goodman at the Washington Free Beacon reports that the Hillary Clinton camp held a secret meeting with editors and reporters at The New York Times to complain about their coverage. The message: Back off.
Goodman writes “sources familiar with the meeting describe it as an attempt to brush back and even intimidate the staff of the Times.” This could be especially intimidating after the newspaper's publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr. tossed out female executive editor Jill Abramson.
Amid Fox’s Howard Kurtz sensing the press is walking away from the VA scandal, Investor’s Business Daily reported a new poll on its front page Wednesday: “Just 29% think President Obama has done a good job managing the VA in the wake of the department's patient-care scandal, according to the latest IBD/TIPP poll, while 43% surveyed say he's done a poor job and 22% rate his performance as only average.”
Sixty-three percent said Obama was either disengaged (29%) or that he "knows more than he claims" (34%) about the scandal.The public also overwhelmingly rejected the liberal claim that a lack of money was the chief reason for the VA scandal:
On June 4, 1989, the communist regime in China cracked down violently on democratic protesters in Tiananmen Square. American networks had provided weeks of coverage of the protests, and the crackdown was a global outrage.
But both then and later, some national reporters embarrassed themselves by making odd comparisons between the communist crackdown and allegedly similar outrages in America:
Paul Bedard at the Washington Examiner reports that a Thursday news report from Coral Davenport of The New York Times is being used by the Obama-promoting group Organizing for America to sell his War on Coal. It’s a news story they’re quoting, not an editorial.
In a new e-mail, OFA writes, “I needed you to see this, because what we're doing here is big.” The nation's newspaper of record is impressed:
How radical is Hollywood? There are two competing movie projects sure to lionize Edward Snowden betraying America’s secrets. Naturally, one of them is helmed by Oliver Stone, who bows to no one in casting America as a global supervillain. See his Untold History of the United States bilge on Showtime.
"This is one of the greatest stories of our time," said the leftist director. "A real challenge." Stone has repeatedly called Snowden a "hero" and slammed President Obama as a "disgrace" for his "Bush-style eavesdropping techniques." A rival Snowden movie based on Glenn Greenwald's Snowden book No Place to Hide is also in the works from Michael Wilson and Barbara Broccoli, producers of the James Bond movies. Alongside the Brian Williams softball special on NBC, there’s a “Snowden business” emerging:
It’s the media equivalent to declaring a Big Gulp with Pepsi-Cola is nutritious. TV Newser notes that professors at the University of Pennsylvania issued a study proclaiming that watching “The Colbert Report” served as “an extended civics lesson” compared to CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, broadcast evening news, talk radio, and newspapers.
“It’s the first study actually showing that Colbert is doing a better job than other news sources at teaching people about campaign financing,” said Bruce W. Hardy, Ph.D., lead author of the study and a senior researcher at the Annenberg Public Policy Center.
As a network, ESPN continues to propagate the bizarre idea that it’s non-ideological to celebrate the drafting of gay NFL draftee Michael Sam. ESPN ombudsman Robert Lipsyte – a former New York Times columnist – unsurprisingly gave the network “high marks” for its promotional Sam coverage in a column posted Friday.
“I think ESPN’s point of view here is nonideological, unless you believe capitalism and proper journalism are ideological,” Lipyste claimed.
Candidate Alan Webber, the Democrat with the largest campaign treasury, told supporters "So I’m asking you for your help, we need to make Susana Martinez a one-term governor. We need to send her back to wherever she really came from," he said. "I suspect it’s Texas. And that would be good for Texas and that would be good for New Mexico." Surprise, the networks have never heard of this, although everyone knows instantly how this would be greeted if Webber were a Tea Party Republican and Martinez was a Democrat. (video below)
Washington Post reporter Paul Farhi reported on Jay Carney stepping down as White House spokesman and how exhausting the job is. It's "Washington's ultimate burnout job."
Farhi found some of that was just dodging: Yahoo News reported last June that Carney had responded to questions at the daily briefings with some variation of “I don’t know” nearly 2,000 times since his first briefing in 2011. It also reported that Carney had somehow dodged reporters’ questions approximately 9,486 times. Reporters were split in their evaluations of this former Time White House correspondent who switched sides:
“I miss Barbara Walters already,” she wrote, as if Barbara was the epitome of hardball interviews. “Brian Williams of NBC News did a good job of letting Edward J. Snowden say what he wanted to say. Someone a little nosier would surely have pressed the exiled National Security Agency leaker on what he held back.” Such as:
President Obama's West Point speech was panned by consensus as hard to follow, which was even acknowledged in media-elite salons like Washington Week on PBS. But on Wednesday's edition of The Diane Rehm Showon NPR, some journalists were trashing Bush instead.
After Katrina Vanden Heuvel of The Nation credited Obama for "always looking out for a younger generation" that's more peaceful, former Newsweek correspondent Michael Hirsh (now with National Journal) said the public isn't war-weary, but reasonable to support Obama after a "decade of disaster" under George W. Bush:
Washington Post film critic Ann Hornaday’s sudden feminist fascination this week with Santa Barbara murderer Elliot Rodger is not her usual modus operandi. A little searching shows Hornaday had nothing to say about other recent mass shooters like Jared Loughner (Tucson), Aaron Alexis (D.C. Navy Yard), Adam Lanza (Newtown) and certainly not Malik Nidal Hasan (Fort Hood) or Ivan Lopez (Fort Hood II).
In fact, Hornaday easily could have explored Loughner’s movie obsession was with the 2001 film Donnie Darko with Jake Gyllenhaal playing the lead, a film Hornaday adored as a secular's humanist Passion of the Christ (and adored even more when a director’s cut was issued in 2004):
During an interview with Sky News on Friday, actress Charlize Theron explained that "every aspect" of her life has become "fodder," and the fact that she doesn't Google herself is her "saving grace." She added, "When you start living in that world, and doing that, you start feeling raped."
The Huffington Post noted Theron is “not the first actress to compare the press intruding into her personal life to rape, and she certainly won't be the last -- but wouldn't it be nice if she were?”
Friday's Wall Street Journal editorial page highlighted this week's "meal melee" with Michelle Obama and White House chef Sam Kass arguing across the media that anti-"science" Republicans would "devastate" children's health with an opt-out provision from new federal school-lunch mandates. The Journal insisted "The changes were mandated by a 2010 bill that passed with rare bipartisan support, but their implementation by the first lady and Agriculture Department has become a rolling fiasco."
It sounds like the school-lunch version of Obamacare, what the Journal editorial calls "poorly devised...cuisine central planning":
Via the Free Beacon, we see that State Department spokesman Jen Psaki sounds as desperate as Jay Carney in selling the flagging fortunes of President Obama. Reporters started mocking her as she claimed “I would argue the President doesn’t give himself enough credit for what’s he’s done around the world.”
The reporters asked for examples, as Psaki insisted just talking to Iran or trying to engage on the Ukraine is an achievement of some sort. One reporter (AP's Matt Lee) cracked if Obama deserves “200 percent credit?” It wasn’t going well for Team Obama. (Video, transcript below)
Actor Mark Ruffalo, currently starring in the Reagan-bashing AIDS drama “The Normal Heart” on HBO, told The Wrap website that any debate about gun control lingering in the wake of America's most recent mass shooting in Santa Barbara is “completely outrageous.”
“I don't know how many more of these are going to happen before we start to act like adults, instead of running around like a bunch of selfish children because there's some sort of machismo connected with the idea of having militarized weaponry sitting in your closet,” Ruffalo told TheWrap. ”It's just ridiculous. And our kids are paying the price.”
Fox News has hired actress Stacey Dash as a contributor, which seemed in the works after her appearances on the new daytime show “Outnumbered.” But at Yahoo! TV, they ran a snarky article from Tim Keneally at The Wrap. The headline was “Fox News hired ‘Clueless’ actress Stacey Dash.”
That’s not untrue – Dash starred in both the “Clueless” movie and the spinoff TV series in the 1990s. But liberals certainly enjoyed the double meaning. The Wrap somehow found it “newsworthy” to add that “Some comments on Twitter, however, have been less laudatory since the hiring was announced.” Less than laudatory? "Vicious" is a word that fits: