Twice in less than 24 hours, Jim Pinkerton, conservative columnist at Newsday and Tech Central Station, left liberal talking-head rivals at a loss for words on the issue of missile defense.
Pinkerton's first victim was Neal Gabler, on last evening's Fox News Watch. In the context of the North Korean missile tests, liberal Gabler flatly stated: "Missile defense does not work. That is what we have learned." Shot back Pinkerton: "The Japanese believe in it. That's why they're building it right now." Gabler's silence was golden.
David Brooks of the New York Times has been on quite an anti-liberal blogosphere roll of late. After eviscerating Markos Moulitsas Zuniga – the proprietor of the Daily Kos – in a June 25 op-ed entitled “Respect Must be Paid For,” Brooks again ripped into Kos on Friday night’s “The News Hour” on PBS (video link courtesy of Crooks and Liars). Brooks followed this up with another op-ed tangentially on this subject Sunday.
On Friday evening, the discussion between host Jim Lehrer, Mark Shields, and Brooks centered around Joe Lieberman’s problems in Connecticut. Lehrer asked Brooks how Lieberman is impacting the 2008 presidential campaign. Brooks responded (emphasis mine):
That didn't take long! Just yesterday I suggested readers keep in mind the MSM's bashing of Pres. Bush on his birthday the next time a liberal accused conservatives of being 'mean-spirited.' Groucho fans will know what I mean when I say: bring down the duck! On last evening's Journal Editorial Report , liberal newsie Marvin Kalb said the magic 'm-s' word in condemning the Wall Street Journal for its criticism of the New York Times.
The Journal had run an editorial, Fit and Unfit to Print [subscription required] that both explained why it had run a story on the anti-terror financial tracking program, and criticized the New York Times for doing so. For the record, the editorial explained that in contrast with the Times article, the Journal only published declassified information that had been provided them by the Treasury Department.
Jonah Goldberg at The Corner tipped us off to this story: The Boston Globe doesn't just favor "gay marriage," it's demanding it from gay employees who want "domestic partner" benefits. Jesse Noyes at the Boston Herald reported:
Memo to Boston Globe gay and lesbian Guild employees: Get married or lose your domestic partner benefits.
Globe staffers have been told that health and dental benefits for gay employees’ domestic partners are being discontinued. Gay couples who want to keep their benefits must marry by Jan. 1.
A memo sent to the Globe’s Boston Newspaper Guild members, and obtained by the Herald, states that Massachusetts gay Guild employees can extend their benefits to their partners only if they marry.
This weekend's print ads for the Al Gore global-warming-slide-show documentary "An Inconvenient Truth" explicitly appeals to liberals to vote for environmental extremism at the box office. Is this a movie ad, or a Greenpeace direct-mail letter? Judge for yourself. This prose appears on the image of a piece of paper tacked to a bulletin board (emphasis theirs):
An Inconvenient Truth' is already one of the top ten documentaries of all time.
It has a chance to become a phenomenon.
There are people in Washington hoping that never happens, so they can dismiss it as a fringe issue.
If you care... you can't let them.
You need to take your friends and family, and make them see it.
What is it about the liberal media that regularly confuses mass protests with public opinion? In Mexico, the vote has been certified, and conservative Felipe Calderon is the president-elect. But yesterday, leftist Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador held a massive protest in Mexico City insisting he's the winner. The top of The Washington Post's front page Sunday carries a large photo of "Tens of thousands" of AMLO supporters, under the headline "Contender Alleges Mexico's Vote Was Rigged." Reporter Manuel Roig-Franzia began the story as if he was waving a leftist flag in the square:
Downtown Mexico City swelled Saturday with the accumulated frustration and rage of the poor, who were stoked into a sign-waving, fist-pumping frenzy by new fraud allegations that failed populist candidate Andrés Manuel López Obrador hopes will overturn the results of Mexico's presidential election.
Discoverthenetworks.org is a self-described 'guide to the political left.' Go there, enter 'Center for Economic and Policy Research' and what is the FIRST thing that pops up in the entry?
"Prominent supporter of, and apologist for, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez."
When the AP writes an article on Hugo Chavez's 'new socialism.' it is quick to identify the Heritage Foundation as 'conservative' when mentioning that Heritage "found Venezuela's business climate inhospitable and 'repressed' this year, ranking it 152 out of 157 countries -- just above Zimbabwe and North Korea."
In a piece posted Thursday night, Jack Shafer, media critic for the Washington Post-owned online magazine Slate, ponders the current tension between the Bush administration and the press over the latter's reporting of some of the former's anti-terrorist methods. Shafer posits that Bush and company's angry reaction to said reporting
signal[s] the breakdown of the traditional comity—I wouldn't call it "trust"—that has existed between the White House and the press. Since the end of WWII, the press has sought White House input whenever its reporters bumped up against issues of national security, and if the press has erred it's mostly erred in favor of the government position. For a good summary of recent instances in which the [New York Times and Los Angeles Times] and the Washington Post have held stories or deleted sensitive information at the administration's request, see [NYT editor Bill] Keller and [LAT editor Dean] Baquet's joint op-ed...defending publication of their SWIFT stories.
Next time you hear liberals talk about mean-spirited Republicans, you might want to remind them of the cold-water dousing the MSM gave the 60 candles on the president's birthday cake.
First there was WaPo's Dana Milbank - that paragon of objective journalism - who on Countdown twisted W's good-natured gesture of inviting onto the podium press people who shared the same birthday into a metaphor of presidential lonelieness and isolation. Milbank also used the occasion to allude to Bush's allegedly dissolute youth. And for good measure, the 'reporter' even managed to revive allegations regarding Bush's National Guard service. How old are you now, Dana?
As reported by NewsBusters here, Sen. Joe Biden (D-Delaware) made some rather insensitive statements last month concerning not being able to “go to a 7- Eleven or Dunkin Donuts unless you have a slight Indian accent.” CNN invited Biden on Friday's 5PM ET installment of “The Situation Room” to discuss how things are going in Iraq – amongst other things – and then gave him a great opportunity to explain these Indian remarks (video link to follow).
Rather than challenge the Senator in any way, host John King filling in for Wolf Blitzer basically gave Biden a platform to rationalize why these statements weren’t inappropriate. After reading the offending sentences from Biden captured by C-SPAN, King simply asked, “What were you thinking?” Biden was then given the floor to make any statement that he wanted about this issue, without any grilling or interrogation whatsoever by King:
New York Times Executive Editor Bill Keller claimed there were no consequences for leaking information about the bank-monitoring program designed to track terrorists' finances. He claimed that there was no harm done and that no backlash was caused by publicly releasing the information.
In fact, Keller said the program would still be supported in Europe, despite the leak.
The Bush Administration and America itself may be unpopular in Europe these days, but policing the byways of international terror seems to have pretty strong support everywhere. And while it is too early to tell, the initial signs are that our article is not generating a banker backlash against the program.
The European governments knew about the program, but now that the New York Times has made it known to the world, they may have to show outrage to their home citizens.
On "Special Report with Brit Hume," the anchor led his July 7 "Political Grapevine" segment by reporting on the reaction of the European Parliament to the Times story.
Friday's Washington Post put the feisty intra-party Democratic debate on Thursday night between Sen. Joe Lieberman and his ultraliberal opponent, Ned Lamont, on the front page. That's odd, considering the nearby New York Times put the story on A-19. But reporter Shailagh Murray never described Lamont (or his fervent supporters on the hard-left blogs like Daily Kos) as "liberal." In the story's last paragraph, she acknowledged it only as an opponent's questionable charge: "Lieberman has tried to depict him as a pawn of the left."
The Times story accurately pegged the current trend: "anti-war activists and liberal bloggers from across the nation have flocked to Mr. Lamont's aid in hopes of punishing Mr. Lieberman for his centrist politics." Well, accurate at least, until the centrist part: in the latest American Conservative Union voting scores for Congress, Lieberman has compiled scores of eight percent (2005) and zero percent (2004). His lifetime ACU is 17 -- not that "centrist." Murray's story began by merely linking Lamont to the "anti-war movement":
On Friday's Washington Week on PBS, taped at the Aspen Ideas Festival (“Inspired Thinking in an Idyllic Setting”), when asked by host Gwen Ifill about hateful speech in politics and directed at journalists -- “Is that polarization real or is it just people blogging?" -- NBC News reporter Andrea Mitchell charged that “the kind of hateful speech that we have seen...in a lot of the blogosphere...goes back, in my own experience, to 1989 when the talk radio shows went crazy about the congressional pay raise.” She then reasoned: “The anti-Washington, anti-bureaucrat bias that was built into that debate was then taken up by cable talk hosts as well and that became the kind of really combative conversation that displaced reasoned discussions about controversial issues."
PBS picked six members of the Colorado conference audience to pose questions to the panel. None came from the right and four were clearly from the left, starting with a woman who wondered: “How can we keep religion out of government and politics?" A man complained: “What's the responsibility of government and the press regarding poor people and why do we hear so little about housing crisis, minimum wage, homeless people and low-wage workers?" That pleased James Bennet, a former New York Times White House reporter who is now Editor of The Atlantic magazine: "It's a great question. I've been wondering what happened to the issue of homelessness in America.” (Partial transcripts follow)
Does Norah read NewsBusters? Could it be pure coincidence that Hardball's 'What'd You Say?' audio highlights of the week just happened to select the two items we had highlighted here and here? Who knows?
For the record, the two featured soundbites were Joe Biden's
Indian-7/11 slur, and Cindy Sheehan's pronouncement that she would
rather live under Venezuelan strongman Hugo Chavez than George Bush.
Panelist Tucker Carlson had the best line: "[Sheehan's] a
pathetic figure. It would be a hard moral call whether or not to have
her on. She's almost like a sideshow figure now." Too true.
MRC intern Chadd Clark found that CNN had the same old pattern of centering the day's big state court decisions on "gay marriage" as a ruling for "proponents" first. This report aired Thursday in the 4 pm hour of "The Situation Room." Perhaps the newspapers were merely copying from the CNN stylebook. Or maybe it's the GLAAD stylebook.
John King: "Moving on, though. Proponents of gay marriage are reeling today from a one-two legal punch. Courts in Georgia and in New York State issued new rulings now having an impact on the culture wars. CNN's Allan Chernoff has more from New York. Hi, Allan."
Sometimes, NBC’s Today show bombards a viewer with bias. Other days, the spin is sprinkled throughout the show; July 7 fell into the latter catagory. In a segment on the North Korean nuclear standoff that aired at 7:05AM EDT, NBC reporter Jim Miklaszewski discussed that country’s recent missile launches. The piece featured a quote from Joseph Cirincione, who, as an NBC graphic identified, is a "nuclear weapons expert."
Cirincione: "[Kim Jong Il] is demanding that the U.S. negotiate with him, not that we surrender, that we come to the table and cut a deal."
Cirincione isn’t simply a "nuclear weapons expert." For eight years, he was the Director for Non-Proliferation at the liberal Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. As the MRC’s Brent Baker reported in a CyberAlert dated October 5th, 2004, he was also a generous donor to the John Kerry campaign. So, in this light, his comments calling for negotiations and reasonable dialogue with the North Korean dictator can be seen in a more honest context. Does anyone believe that Pat Toomey, President of the right-leaning Club for Growth, would ever be labeled as simply an "economics expert" and not have the phrase "conservative" tacked on? It should also be noted that during this segment, NBC, like CBS, didn’t find the time to mention the recent report that the missile North Korea recently launched was aimed at Hawaii.
On Thursday, “The Smoking Gun” website published the Homeland Security manifest, including the June 29 affidavit signed by Rush Limbaugh, concerning the conservative radio host’s customs detention in Palm Beach, Florida, last month (hat tip to Radio Equalizer).
With the headline, “Rush Limbaugh's Dominican Stag Party,” and a sub-headline, “29 Viagra pills, two ‘24’ producers among radio star's all-male crew,” it seems that this is likely to incite more lurid media speculation concerning why Limbaugh had Viagra on an “all boys” trip to the Dominican Republic:
Just as the New York Times firmly centered its coverage of so-called "gay marriage" decisions from state courts on the gay left's horror, The Washington Post report from Amy Goldstein also presented the issue first and foremost as a question of how "gay rights advocates" felt:
The highest courts of New York and Georgia ruled yesterday that same-sex couples are not entitled to marry, delivering a twin blow to gay rights advocates that leaves Massachusetts as the only state in which such unions are legal.
As usual, the story is illustrated by a photo of gay activists, as it almost always is. Gay media theorists used to protest that their problem was "invisibility," but now, it's the social conservative activists that almost never get their picture in the paper when the story is gay "civil rights." Perhaps the most classic Goldstein paragraph is the one where she describes the great ideological battle on this issue, between conservatives and liberals -- oops, make that advocates of "civil rights."
Today's New York Times leads off with a local story with national ramifications, a 4-2 defeat of gay marriage in the Court of Appeals of New York, the state's highest court.
Anemona Hartocollis reports:
"New York's highest court rejected yesterday a broad attempt by gay and lesbian couples across the state to win the right to marry under state law, saying that denying marriage to same-sex couples does not violate the State Constitution.
"By a 4-2 majority, the Court of Appeals found that the State Legislature, in laws dating back nearly 100 years, intended to limit marriage to a union between a man and a woman, and that the Legislature had a rational basis for doing so."
If anyone says Rupert Murdoch's media outlets go easy on conservatives, his New York Post has been willing to run plagiarism challenges brought against Ann Coulter by former University of California, Berkeley professor John Barrie.
Universal Press Syndicate, through which Coulter's columns appear in more than 100 newspapers, said it wants to review a report that detailed instances in which passages of her columns appeared to be lifted from other authors. A plagiarism-detecting software system called iThenticate produced the findings.
"We take allegations of plagiarism seriously. It's something we'd like to investigate further," Universal spokeswoman Kathie Kerr said.
"We'd like to see a copy of the report. We'd like to start looking into it."
For the second day in a row, Harry Smith, co-host of CBS’s "The Early Show" interviewed a guest about North Korea and its missile tests. Today’s analysis came from frequent guest Michael O’Hanlon of the Brookings Institution. And while Smith once again referred to Kim Jong-Il as a nutcase and even inferred that he is a despot, he was easily amazed at O’Hanlon’s suggestion that he is crafty.
As noted, Harry Smith’s first question to O’Hanlon in essence described who Kim Jong-Il truly is:
"Before we talk about missiles I want to talk about Kim Jong-Il for a minute. It's not too extreme, I don't think, to say this guy is nuts. He has nukes. He runs a ruthless regime in North Korea where people routinely don't have enough to eat. This guy is the wild card of all wild cards. What else can we know about this guy?"
As NewsBuster Mark Finkelstein pointed out on Friday, there is quite a double-standard in the media concerning what’s acceptable for a Democrat to say versus a Republican. With that in mind, as captured by C-SPAN, Senator Joe Biden (D-Delaware) recently made some comments concerning folks from India that were not at all flattering. As of yet, there appears to be no media outrage.
Here’s what Biden said:
“In Delaware, the largest growth of population is Indian Americans, moving from India. You cannot go to a 7/11 or a Dunkin’ Donuts unless you have a slight Indian accent. I’m not joking.”
Our friend Ian at Expose the Left has the videoso that you can watch for yourself to gauge the seriousness of these statements, and what might have happened if a Republican had said the same thing.
The FBI "scrambling" to pick up suspects stopped a terror plot by jihadists trying to blow up the Holland Tunnel, flooding Manhattan.
Counterterrorism officials are alarmed by the "lone wolf" terror plot because they allegedly got a pledge of financial and tactical support from Jordanian associates of top terrorist Abu Musab al-Zarqawi before he was killed in Iraq, a counterterrorism source told The News.
It's not clear, however, if any cash or assistance was delivered.
No, and it probably will never be clear again. Thanks, New York Times.
A Republican senator who makes a remark with insensitive racial connotations? Toast. Ask Trent Lott. A Democrat? Hey, no problem! Then again, woe betide the Republican senator who offers an awkward description of the workings of the internet. It will 'haunt' him.
That's the world according to Wonkette-turned-Time columnist Ana Marie Cox, who appeared on last evening's Scarborough Country. For those who might have missed the Biden flap, on a recent campaign swing to New Hampshire, Biden told an Indian political activist: “You cannot go into a Dunkin Donuts or a 7-Eleven unless you have a slight Indian accent.”
It's one thing for Keith Olbermann to take snide shots at President Bush. He doesn't hold himself out as an objective journalist, after all. But Dana Milbank is, in theory, not a partisan commentator but a national political reporter, repeat, reporter, for the Washington Post. Milbank is a man who has written that his only bias is for 'mainstream news' and that he is sees his role as 'gathering and reporting facts.'
Yet in his interview on last night's Countdown, it was Milbank [shown in an NB file photo] taking some of the nastier jibes at W on the occasion of the latter's 60th birthday.
Olbermann rather benevolently remarked that Pres. Bush "does not look 60. He does not seem to have aged as much as a lot of other presidents have during their time in office. Do we attribute that to something in particular? His physical fitness regimen, the strength of his convictions? Not having sleepless nights?"
When he asked "why doesn't he look at bad as other presidents who have been through the mill for five years?", Milbank shot back snidely:
"It probably wasn't his clean living in the 1970'S."
New York Times TV writer Alessandra Stanley reviewed George and Laura Bush's Thursday night interview on CNN's "Larry King Live" as a desperately needed chance for a softball interview. "The standoff with North Korea over its missile tests, the war in Iraq and ever-sliding ratings in the polls have given the president little reason to celebrate. Mr. King gave the president a chance to defend his policies without risk of interruption or follow-up."
This adjective, "ever-sliding," may be what Miss Stanley wishes and hopes for, but it could not be described as accurate. Bush fans would look silly to describe Bush's poll ratings as good. But they have been creeping upward since the killing of Iraqi al-Qaeda leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. The PollingReport.com summary shows that several polls have him up a bit since a low point in early May:
Disgraced former CBS anchorman Dan Rather resurfaced Wednesday night on CNN, where he was a guest on "Anderson Cooper 360." Cooper didn't apologize for calling dibs on some of Rather's "60 Minutes" real estate, but maybe the air time was a bit of a thank-you card. The first thing a viewer might notice is that Cooper let Rather speak for large chunks of time, more hesitant to jump in than....a horned frog crossing the highway, to speak in Ratherisms. Michelle Humphrey said it seemed like he was being indulgent because it was Grandpa's story time. Notice how long Rather is allowed for his answers about how North Korea's tight control can "eat on your mind."
There isn't really any outrageous liberal bias here in the exchange, unless you count any attempt to rehabilitate the man who ruined his career to make the less than earth-shattering charge that President Bush missed a National Guard flight physical in Alabama. A look at the transcript:
In the first sentence, Mark Stevenson of the Associated Press says the liberal candidate for Mexican president, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, is used to being cheated out of elections. Since the conservative candidate, Felipe Calderon, has been announced the winner, liberals/the media have a ready fallback position, the same used against Bush: "He stole the election."
The role of a man cheated out of an election comes naturally to Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador.
In 1994, after narrowly losing the Tabasco governor's race to Roberto Madrazo, he called on his supporters and governed from the streets, undermining Madrazo's already fragile administration.
David Remnick, the editor of the New Yorker and a Washington Post reporter from the early 1980s until the early '90s, has written a commentary for his magazine's July 10 issue in which he asserts that the Bush administration's criticism of stories such as Dana Priest's secret-prisons piece in the Washington Post and the New York Times' recent terror-finance-tracking story is insincere and politically calculated. Excerpts (emphasis added):
...More than any other White House in history, Bush’s has tried to starve, mock, weaken, bypass, devalue, intimidate, and deceive the press, using tactics far more toxic than any prose devised in the name of Spiro Agnew.
Bill Keller, editor of The New York Times, was on the PBS "NewsHour" last night to discuss the fallout over the fact that on June 23, The New York Times among other papers, revealed classified anti terrorism programs. Mr. Keller attempted to downplay the revelation as not a big deal because:
"We weighed very heavily and looked in excruciating detail at claims that this was not something that terrorists knew, that this would somehow be useful to terrorists. And the fact is, you know, you can find more useful detail about what the Treasury is doing in the Treasury's own public briefings."
If there is more useful detail on the public record, then why didn’t the Times print that instead? How does the Times know that the terrorists were already aware of the SWIFT program they wrote about? Did they talk to any terrorists to find out? The fact is, as Bill Keller goes on to mention: