The so-called "dean of the White House press corps" is at it again - not abusing her front row position at White House press briefings and criticizing the Bush administration, but this time by taking shots at the new media.
(Updated with Monday's Post treatment and a Post warning I missed)
It's quite routine for Sunday newspaper inserts to be published weeks in advance. But what happens when they become outdated? Wouldn't they throw them out and start over? Apparently not. This is the cover of Parade magazine, included in today's Washington Post:
Is Benazir Bhutto America's best hope against al-Qaeda?
'I Am What The Terrorists Most Fear'
An Interview from Pakistan by Gail Sheehy
This interview would still be newsworthy...if Parade (or its newspaper clients like the Post) would merely acknowledge that a death had occurred. But no. Turn inside and the headline is:
As Benazir Bhutto seeks a return to power, Tuesday's election in Pakistan could profoundly affect the fight against terrorism.
'A Wrong Must Be Righted' by Gail Sheehy
The text boxes in the piece add:
Is she America's best hope in the region?
'She will work with anyone to get back into power,' says her own niece
Move over, Bill Clinton. There's a new kid on the block when it comes to looking into the camera and not telling the truth to the American people . . . and his name is John Edwards. To his credit, George Stephanopoulos caught Edwards out today on a key tenet of Silky's candidacy . . . but then let things slide.
Edwards was a guest on This Week, and it didn't take him long to don his scourge-of-greedy-corporations mantle. Central to Edwards' pitch is the claim that you don't sit down with corporate interests, you fight them.
Fred Thompson today blasted the media for propagating a false rumor about his impending withdrawal, while reinforcing the role he has created for himself as the candidate in this race who does not suffer unwelcome questions gladly.
Back in Iowa, Thompson famously refused to respond to the debate moderator/school marm's demand for a hand-show on global warming. On this morning's Today, he declined to engage in horse-race speculation about his own prospects, then took the media to task for its propagation of that false rumor about his impending withdrawal. Weekend anchor Lester Holt interviewed the former Tennessee senator.
The Hillary-lovers continue to attack our book "Whitewash" as full of lies. On his website ConWebWatch, Terry Krepel claims the book "ignores context and exculpatory evidence." His article is headlined "Brent Bozell’s Blackwash." His liberal take is quickly advertised when he attacks the concept of interviewing leading conservatives for the book, from Rush Limbaugh to Sean Hannity to Laura Ingraham to Mark Levin: "The problem with such an approach is that very few of these people -- Bozell and Graham included -- have no real interest in ‘the truth’ about the Clintons; they only want to attack and will forward any claim, accurate or not, to achieve that goal."
That broad-brush allegation is a weird place to begin if you want to establish your own bona fides as disinterested or non-ideological. But Terry Krepel’s not disinterested. He’s a senior editor at Media Matters for America, which was started at the urging of Hillary Clinton. They originally pledged it would be a liberal version of the Media Research Center.
On the bright side, during Friday's The Situation Room, one day after CNN's Bill Schneider ludicrously called Democratic voters in Iowa "pretty moderate," the political analyst labeled Barack Obama as "liberal," and CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin later called Obama "very liberal" as he recommended that the Hillary Clinton campaign should be attacking the Illinois Senator's voting record. Toobin further said that, as a state senator, Obama "had one of the most liberal voting records in a fairly liberal state." (Transcript follows)
ABC News and Charles Gibson are no CNN and Anderson Cooper when it comes to skewing the agenda of presidential debates. In the back-to-back Republican followed by Democratic debates from New Hampshire aired between 7 and 11 PM EST Saturday night on ABC, moderator Gibson challenged the presumptions of both sets of candidates with a key talking point being pushed by the other party: He hit Republicans on the lack of national health care and Democrats on the success of the surge in Iraq.
To the six Republicans: “We're the only industrialized nation in the world that doesn't insure all of our citizens. If we can afford a trillion dollar war in Iraq, why can't we afford medical insurance for everybody?”
To the four Democrats: “We started the surge early this year. You all opposed it. But there are real signs it has worked....Are any of you ready to say that the surge has worked? And Senator Clinton, let me start with you, because when General Petraeus was in Washington in September, you said it would take 'a willful suspension of disbelief' to think that the surge could do any good.”
On Friday afternoon, CNN's liberal contributor Roland Martin suggested that most people who are pro-life seem "hateful" as he was describing Mike Huckabee's need to reach out to non-evangelical voters. During an appearance on CNN Newsroom at about 1:47 p.m. with anchor Kyra Phillips, Martin contended that Huckabee needs to pursue a strategy similar to that of President Bush in 2000: "Sure, [Huckabee is] a staunch pro-life person, but he isn't perceived as being hateful as other people who are pro-life." (Transcript follows)
Below is a transcript of the relevant portion of Martin's comments from the Friday January 4 CNN Newsroom:
Toyota is listed second for a reason that would have been almost unthinkable three years ago (bolds are mine):
Ford Motor Co., in the midst of a restructuring, fell to No. 3 in U.S. auto sales last year, as Toyota Motor Corp. posted its 12th straight year of record U.S. sales and moved up to second place behind General Motors Corp.
Even though Ford held on to pickup leadership with its F-Series -- the nation's best-selling vehicle nameplate for 26 years and the best-selling truck for 31 years -- the company's Ford brand is no longer the nation's best-selling make(Note: Chevrolet now is -- Ed.).
On the eve of the Iowa caucuses, NBC News Political Director Chuck Todd disclosed thatthe media was poised to take a third-place McCain finish there and use it to catapult him to victory in New Hampshire. McCain actually finished fourth in Iowa, but on Good Morning America today we saw a perfect example of the phenomenon Todd predicted.
ABC declared that McCain is "surging," "rising in the polls," may have "the most momentum," used "The Mac Is Back" as its screen graphic, and portrayed Mitt Romney in a highly unflattering light. There was only one small problem with ABC's depiction of a McCain surge: the latest poll numbers from the organization that nailed the Iowa results . . . reveal that McCain slipped in the polls overnight and lost ground to Mitt Romney.
OK, this one really does serve as a perfect example of the MSM's covering for Hillary's shifty behavior. As I tell you this tale, imagine for yourself how the MSM would treat such a story if the same should have been perpetrated by a Republican candidate. It's the story of a fake "coincidence" at one of Hillary's Iowa appearances, one that was so painfully obvious by its complete manufacturing that it amazes any sane person that team Hillary was seriously trying to claim that the incident was a true occurrence and not a fake, manufactured campaign "happening."
It seems that Hillary was "coincidentally" asked by a "spontaneous" supporter if she were a Christian at her appearance in Donnellson, Iowa on the 23rd. This "coincidence" was right after our friendly Baptist Minister, Mike Huckabee, so famously rallied the religious folk to his side at the GOP Iowa caucus.
Amazing how the "religious" question so "coincidentally" came up, eh?
Want some old fashioned black helicopter, conspiracy goofiness? Check out the frenzied work of HufPoster Joseph Palmero who imagines that if Obama becomes president members of Blackwater security services or Haliburton would somehow decide to assassinate him. After reading his wild-eyed musings, one wonders if the foam from his mouth short circuited his keyboard as he wrote?
In an effort to equate Obama's rather empty rhetoric and lack of a substantive record to what Palmero imagines his lefty pals will imagine is "greatness," Palmero tries to work in some equating of the junior Senator from Illinois with Robert F. Kennedy's campaign for the Dem nomination for president in 1968. Saying that Obama "struck similar chords" as Kennedy, Palmero waxes poetic about how it "took forty years" to see another Kennedyesque candidate.
But there was another, more sinister aspect of the Kennedy run that Palmero wanted to exploit with his piece. That aspect is the promise of a Kennedy panacea that was cut so short by an assassin's bullet. Absurdly, Palmero seems to expect the same to happen to Barack Hussein Obama.
Update (Jan. 7 | 14:30): This was mentioned earlier in the comments thread. You can see Maher's offensive comments beginning about 1:35 into the video posted on YouTube here.
Appearing on the Friday "Late Night with Conan O'Brien," comedian Bill Maher took repeated swipes at the Republican Party and conservatives as idiotic, bigoted, homophobic, you know, all the usual epithets.
Although his material was registering mostly nervous laughter from the audience, Maher plunged further into his assault on traditional values, attacking Christians, particularly Catholics, by insisting that one has to be "schizophrenic" to go about life normally for six days a week only to, on the seventh go to church and believe that when drinking communion wine one is drinking "the blood of a 2,000-year old space god."
Of the three broadcast network evening newscasts on Friday, only the CBS Evening News squeezed in a mention of how a California judge sentenced Norman Hsu -- the fugitive donor to many Democrats including Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama -- to three years in prison on a 16-year-old fraud conviction. Unlike ABC and NBC, CBS's Katie Couric didn't lead with the Iowa caucus results, but with “more signs of a looming recession.” Couric's brief item on Hsu:
In California today, Norman Hsu, the so-called fugitive financier, was sentenced to three years in prison. Hsu was convicted of fraud back in 1992 but fled before he was sentenced. While on the run for 15 years, he contributed millions to political campaigns, including $850,000 to Hillary Clinton's campaign which she has since returned.
Hsu, however, also helped Barack Obama, the big winner in Iowa, but that didn't make it into Couric's brief or prompt any interest from ABC or NBC. Back on October 16, the Los Angeles Times reported “a political action committee for Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill) received $24,500" from Hsu associates.
One would think that a Democratic fundraiser fugitive that was involved with one of the prominate Democrats running for President was sentenced to three years for Fraud it would be newsworthy. However, CNN not only buried it behind all the post-Iowa ruckus, but also neglected to mention which candidate(s) the disgraced Hsu donated and fundraised. That would be Hillary Clinton.
A former fugitive captured in Colorado has been sentenced to three years in prison — after a judge rejected his bid to throw out a 16-year-old fraud conviction.
Attorneys for disgraced political donor Norman Hsu had asked Judge Stephen Hall to dismiss his 1992 no-contest plea, saying Hsu’s right to a speedy trial was violated because authorities were not actively pursuing him during his years as a fugitive.
Public radio is a left-wing preserve, but some corners of public radio are so far to the left that they treat liberals as gangsters and monsters. A brief listen to Pacifica Radio's "Democracy Now" program on Thursday brought me to a segment on the presidential candidates, and how they're all, from left to right, compromised by their warmongering national-security experts. Radical journalist Allan Nairn attacked Mike Huckabee, for example, for failing to treat Bill Clinton as a war criminal:
ThePolitico.com continues to publish hatchet hackery on Republican presidential candidate Fred Thompson, with today's false coverage of Sen. Thompson's speech to supporters after his third-place finish in the Iowa Caucuses.
Politico reporter Roger Simon recently lied in The Politico about an incident at an Iowa fire hall involving Sen. Thompson and a fire helmet - an "error" that The Politico has never corrected even though video of the event clearly exposed the error.
Today, video again shows The Politico to be publishing fiction about Fred. This time, it is writer Ben Adler's coverage of the Thompson campaign's Iowa Caucus after-party, which uses words like "resignation" and "lackluster," though the video of the event clearly contradicts that depiction.
A January 4 Associated Press story by Jeannine Aversa pointed to the job data as one of the "problems in the economy" that has "elevated fears about a recession." But even with all these "problems" - housing woes, the credit crunch, high oil prices, weak job numbers - the criteria of the economy being in a recession still haven't been close to being met.
Planned Parenthood Golden Gate (PPGG) has unveiled what it calls an “edgy” TV and radio campaign that “focuses on the importance of practicing pregnancy prevention and safer sex.”
Except that the words “pregnancy” and “safe sex” are never spoken. And the pitch man in the “Mile High campaign” is flamingly gay. The TV ad is being run on MTV, VH-1, Comedy Central and TLC, and the radio ad is running on KMEL-FM, a San Francisco station. See if you can find the purported "sexual health" education messages in the ad.
Here is the text of the commercial: (click here to see the video)
Now that whiter-than-Wonder-bread Iowa has punched Barack Obama a first-class ticket to New Hampshire, can the mainstream media, particularly the New York Times, shut up about whether America is ready for a black president? That's what Michelle Malkin rhetorically asked on her blog before giving readers the answer.
Well, it looks like the answer is no. No, the MSM won’t stop yammering about un-diverse white voters. Here’s the NYTimes editorial this morning, right on cue as I predicted, clamoring for an end to the Iowa caucuses and New Hampshire primary by zeroing in on its lack of, you guessed it, racial diversity:
Here's a story from the Miami Herald that's worth keeping track of for coverage in the larger mainstream media, particularly the networks. I highly doubt this story will be a priority for the MSM, although I'm sure conservative bloggers and perhaps immigration reform activists will make sure the American people become aware of it:
Hundreds of wannabe truckers took a detour on the way to the DMV and got bogus commercial driver's licenses, thanks to an Army National Guard sergeant.
Friday morning, authorities threw up the stop sign.
In a series of early morning raids throughout Miami-Dade County Friday, authorities from federal, state and local agencies arrested five people they say obtained licenses fraudulently. Two others were taken into custody later.
In science, it’s called the “observer effect” — the very act of observing a phenomenon changes the phenomenon. And if journalists are simply supposed to “observe” and report on our presidential elections, they are in fact exerting a tremendous effect over the entire process.
For example, imagine two small states, both holding caucuses to pick their delegates to the presidential nominating convention this summer. Because they are so small, neither state delegation will be especially meaningful to the actual outcome, but the caucuses in State A are given saturation attention by the world’s media, while the caucuses in State B are ignored by the media.
Well, no need to imagine. Yesterday, the Iowa caucuses chose a relatively inconsequential 40 delegates to the GOP convention, but the tremendous media attention given to those results has already scrambled the Republican presidential race. Tomorrow, Wyoming Republicans will pick 12 delegates — but the media won’t be there. So it’s essentially a non-event.
Indeed, today’s Wyoming Tribune-Eagle notes how state Republicans “want the event to end by 3 p.m. so the state can get a mention in the Sunday New York Times.”
At the top of Friday’s CBS "Early Show," co-host Harry Smith declared: "The votes have been cast and history has been made. Democratic voters in Iowa give African-American Senator Barack Obama a giant victory."
Shortly following this "historic" proclamation, Smith also commented: "Barack Obama, the big winner on the Democratic side," and spoke of both the Obama and Huckabee wins in these terms: "What a stunning night last night, a big surprise, big votes for change."
Smith continued the "stunning" theme of Obama’s victory throughout the opening segment of the show:
For the Democrats, Obama came in first with 38% of the vote. Stunning. 38%...Now, while the polls may have predicted it, it was still no less a breathtaking win for Barack Obama because he became the clear winner in the Iowa caucuses last night...With a record turnout and support from the under-30 crowd, independent voters, and first-time caucus goers, Barack Obama stunned the political establishment, and much of the country, with his clear and decisive victory Thursday night in Iowa.
Smith also discussed the surprise win of Mike Huckabee, but did not place the Republican Governor’s victory in the same historic terms.
On the PBS talk show "Charlie Rose" Thursday night, Newsweek editor Jon Meacham declared that Hillary Clinton was right that it was a "great night for Democrats" and a bad night for Republicans. He scoured Mike Huckabee as an embarrassment: "Do you really want to see if a Southern Baptist minister who took two days to find out about the National Intelligence Estimate about Iran is going to be your standard bearer in a world at war?" He also declared it was "a rather odd thing for the Republicans of Iowa" to "say to the world that the strongest possible president is a Governor of Arkansas who does not have a great deal or any real foreign policy experience." Meacham seemed to have no sense of irony that the same words were easily spoken of Bill Clinton in 1992, and Rose didn’t call him on it, even though they joked "how many presidents does Hope, Arkansas get in one lifetime?"
Meacham also never thought it was odd that the Democrats of Iowa said to the world that the strongest possible president is a man with three years experience in the U.S. Senate who said (a) that he would meet with America-hating dictators and strongmen like Ahmadinejad and Hugo Chavez without preconditions and (b) then wildly swung back to suggesting he would bomb inside Pakistan to strike al-Qaeda. Meacham, who honored McCain’s courage for supporting the surge in Iraq, never mentioned Obama thought it was a mistake. When it came to the Democrats, Meacham sounded like he was offering a toast:
A frequent lament I've heard in conservative circles is that we're not as good at using the Internet to promote our message as the Left is. Of course, that fear may be a bit overblown to begin. After all, 2007 saw some marked success in conservative blogs growing in readership while liberal ones stagnated according to Simon Owens of Bloggasm:
It has long been understood that the largest liberal blogs have generally produced more web traffic than the largest conservative blogs. But I have noticed a general trend over the past few months that I didn’t want to write about until the end of the year. After surveying the traffic stats of many major political blogs, I found that web traffic for several major liberal blogs either declined sharply or stayed the same while major conservative blogs saw a sharp increase in traffic.