The political battle over climate change has clearly taken a dramatic turn for the worse this month, for it now seems media are actually competing to see which outlet can present the most hysterical report concerning imminent planetary doom at the hands of manmade global warming.
*****Critical updates at end of post.
After ABC News published a disgraceful photo essay featuring computer generated pictures of drowned American cities at its website last Friday, followed by NBC News reporting Monday that Greenland's ice sheets are melting so quickly that it "could ignite worldwide disaster," the Associated Press on Saturday cautioned that "In about a century, some of the places that make America what it is may be slowly erased."
Seems almost like they're playing a game of "Can You Top This" doesn't it?
Sadly, as demonstrated by some of the following lowlights from this truly irresponsible piece of detritus, media are clearly putting on a full-court press to scare Americans into believing the world will quickly come to an end if we don't start doing exactly what soon-to-be-Dr. Al Gore tells us (emphasis added throughout):
With her ratings in the basement, Katie Couric is trying to drive up her appeal by displaying her mastery of the content. But the gaffes can still happen – whether it’s the anchor’s fault or the CBS publicity staff. In the September issue of the promotional pamphlet "CBS News Report" – published locally with ads for the D.C. CBS affiliate WUSA – Couric has several "Katie Couric’s Notebook items." One of them complained that women’s magazines are still accepting ads for "light and luscious" cigarettes: "Congresswoman Lois Katz, who used to be a school nurse, has criticized the hypocrisy of magazines peddling the very health hazard their editorial pages rail against."
The only problem is there is no Rep. Lois Katz. There’s a Rep. Lois Capps (D-Santa Barbara), who’s been in Congress since March 1998, when she replaced her husband Walter, who died of a heart attack the previous fall. She was a school nurse in Santa Barbara.
With a few notable exceptions such as Tom Shales, Dan Rather's $70 million lawsuit against CBS is getting almost no support from his fellow journalists in the mainstream media. The MSM attitudes towards Rather and his lawsuit range from sad to downright brutal. In the category of brutal would be a column by Tim Rutten in today's Los Angeles Times with the less than friendly title of "Dan Rather's lawsuit is an act of ego."
Dan Rather took the best seat in the house that Murrow built and then left the place a ruin. Now he has returned to torch the rubble.
Here we go again with a so-called freedom of speech claim of a bunch of low-class, petulant children playing at being real "journalists" in one of our state funded Universities. This time it's the little fellas at The Rocky Mountain Collegian, the school paper of Colorado State University, who are hiding behind a real right and using it as cover to realize their 15 minutes of fame. These anti-intellectual, collegians are, of course, pretending to be shocked that anyone would question their "right" to print an expletive in bold headlines in their paper and are claiming that they didn't mean to "upset" anyone. I have another four-letter word that describes this absurd claim: LIES.
Proving that our schools seem to be more interested in creating controversy, teaching anti-American ideas, and indulging in childish behavior, this supposed student newspaper staff seemed to imagine that journalism should reflect some trash mouthed, morning disc jockey's schtick instead of serious, reasoned debate. Sadly, it is obvious that these kiddies were left to their own devices in writing and preparing their paper. It seems woefully clear that there was no faculty supervision of these anarchist wannabes. So, not only are we left wondering why our college kids so anti-intellectual but we have to wonder why no one is supervising their misguided attempts at writing. Do these school administrators get a salary to TEACH or do they not?
U.S. Senator and Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton (D-NY) answers a question from moderator Judy Woodruff during a candidates' debate on health care and financial security issues in Davenport, Iowa, September 20, 2007.
Many people track the success of book sales by just checking the best sellers at Amazon.com. If you did that on Saturday, you’d see the folks at Amazon are providing a little promotional blitz for CNN’s Bush-bashing ranter Jack Cafferty and his new book “It’s Getting Ugly Out There.” (Did he have to put his face on the cover to underscore the point?) It might explain why the book is at #83 today. At the top of the best-seller pages is a pic of the Cafferty book and the headline "Cafferty Spells It Out," followed by this promotional blurb:
Jack Cafferty, who appears on CNN's The Situation Room, voices the views, hopes, and fears of the average American in his inimitable style. Now, in It's Getting Ugly Out There, he brings his level-headed wisdom to bear on the most critical issues facing us today.
Did you realize that Congressman Charles Rangel fully intends to enact a massive tax increase this year?
Oh, you thought that the Harlem representative only wants to fix and/or eliminate the dreadful Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT).
If you know otherwise, it's probably only because you read Robert Novak's September 17 syndicated column, which is the only meaningful coverage of Mr. Rangel's plans I have seen (HT to a NewsBusters e-mailer). In it, Novak revealed what Old Media either doesn't care to cover, or appears to not want you to know (bolds are mine):
Sometimes, the truth is obvious to everyone. During a discussion with fellow MSNBC host Chris Matthews, Keith Olbermann wondered why Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards found it necessary to buy commercial time following a speech by President Bush. Marveling at Edwards’s actions, he revealed, "I don't think I'm saying anything unknown to the audience, I don't think he would have gotten a hard time from this particular network."
Speaking of Chris Matthews, one has to admire the host’s creativity. On Tuesday, while discussing the tasering of a University of Florida student, the cable news anchor blamed it on, you guessed it, Iraq. Matthews also decried the "fascistic notion" of American troops "forcing" democracy on Iraqis. Only a day earlier, the MSNBC host wondered, "Should we put Exxon signs up over Arlington Cemetery and Mobil signs up there, like they have at baseball stadiums?"
Most folks by now are certainly aware of the infamous taser incident that happened Monday at the University of Florida.
In a somewhat stunning aftershock (pun intended!), the editorial board of Colorado State University's student-run paper has offered possibly the finest example of Bush Derangement Syndrome to date by actually blaming this incident on - wait for it! - the current President of the United States.
Isn't that special?
Yet, even better was the simplicity of their statement, and the vulgarity included which will follow after the break so that only those who choose to be offended will be (h/t NBer wiwf):
As characteristically strange and bizarre as Dan Rather's lawsuit against CBS is, chances are high that CBS is going to give him some kind of concession, monetary and otherwise.
Neil Cavuto, host of FNC's "Your World" made this point earlier this week stating that CBS has no real alternative other than a long, dragged out court case that will rehash its worst corporate moment. He's right:
Dan Rather is going to win.
I don't know if he's going to get the 70 million bucks he's demanding from CBS.
On this morning's "Today," weekend co-anchor Holt introduced a segment on Rudy Giuliani's Friday speech to the NRA, in which Rudy tried to take some of the sharp edges off his prior anti-NRA positions . . .
Friday night on HBO's Real Time with Bill Maher, “actress/comic” Janeane Garofalo asserted she has “no doubt” that, on the Bush National Guard story, “there were executives at CBS that folded under right wing coercion” and she endorsed MoveOn.org's ad which maligned General David Petraeus as “General Betray Us.” The tattooed Garofalo, who has joined the cast of Fox's 24, charged: “Petraeus has been dishonest” and “is betraying us.”
On the Dan Rather lawsuit, she fretted incoherently about how “it's amazing how the right wing has done it in this country and it doesn't seem like it's a democracy at all when you let that happen.” On Petraeus and the MoveOn.org ad, she ludicrously saw the “mainstream media” as colluding with those who considered the ad over the line: “The thing is is to pretend that it's MoveOn.org that has the problem, and that the mainstream media allows that nonsense to continue. Yet, he is betraying us.”
Liberalism had an absolutely fabulous showing Friday evening as comedienne and former Air America Radio host Janeane Garofalo put on a performance on HBO's "Real Time" that likely left even her parents wondering what they had wrought.
Beginning with her tirade about America's support of Israel being "the detriment of the Palestinian people and the American people," to telling Fox News's Bill O'Reilly to "kiss my fat a**," and concluding with her statement that "George Bush is a war criminal," Garofalo demonstrated just how totally unhinged Hollywoodans have become.
Entitled "Lessons From Jena, LA," Whitlock's piece marvelously exposed a side of this story that mainstream media outlets, as well as folks like Jackson and Sharpton, want to desperately withhold from the public in order to provoke racial tension rather than reduce it.
After a wonderful introduction, Whitlock got down to business (emphasis added throughout, h/t NB reader Thomas Rosenbrook):
This one takes the cake as today, Reuters is trying to manufacture a controversy. Apparently Reuters doesn't understand the concept of "context" because they're idiotically claiming that in his Thursday press conference Bush said that Nelson Mandela is dead. Calling what Bush said "an embarrassing gaffe," Reuters took Bush's words out of context to make it seem as if Bush was talking about something he was not talking about. But any intelligent person can easily understand Bush's context merely by listening to his whole sentence instead of shortening it to just two words.
JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - Nelson Mandela is still very much alive despite an embarrassing gaffe by U.S. President George W. Bush, who alluded to the former South African leader's death in an attempt to explain sectarian violence in Iraq.
Heartwarming that Reuters is so concerned over Mandela's health, isn't it?
Former CBS news anchor Dan Rather gestures during an interview on the Fox News Channel in New York, in this June 12, 2007 file photo. Rather filed a $70 million law suit Wednesday against CBS, Viacom and three of his former bosses.
Steven Milloy asks, "Is billionaire investor George Soros using environmental pressure groups to block a gold-mining project for his own financial benefit?"
Milloy connects the dots and raises many of the same questions that I have been asking about Soros' involvement in the campaign to stop a gold mine project in the impoverished village of Rosia Montana, Romania.
The New York Times, PBS and other media outlets that have covered the Rosia Montana story have not pressed Soros on his motivation for opposition to the mine, even though he is a major investor in competing mining companies that have used similar mining processes he now opposes in the Rosia Montana project.
Here's something you don't see every day: A rapper condemning MTV for, of all things, promoting homosexuality. It makes a little more sense, though, when you realize that he only did so to shift the blame from the increased criticism that rap music has come under following the Don Imus "nappy-headed-hos" incident.
In an interview with Complex magazine (h/t RightwingSparkle), rapper Jeffrey Atkins, aka Ja Rule, blasted both MTV and homosexuality. I've taken the liberty of removing his numerous vulgarities:
Yeah, they got my man Doug Morris under fire and s---, they got him going down to go speak to Congress about hip-hop lyrics, are you f---ing serious? There's a f---ing black kid right now about to get 25 years for having a fight with some white kids over hanging the nooses over the white tree, lets get to that. Let's get into s--- like that, because that's what's tearing up America, not me calling a woman a b---- or a hoe on my rap songs.
I have to figure, after looking at the results of this Google News search on "real earnings" (in quotes), that Old Media business reporters found what came out in the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Real Earnings Report too difficult to understand. The search shows that only the Providence Journal among Old Media outlets mentioned the report, which was released Wednesday.
So in the interest of education, I'll break down the BLS report into simpler terms:
When members of the Duke University lacrosse team were falsely accused of raping a black stripper last year, media focused great attention on the woman in the middle of the controversy, and the supposed crime.
Yet, as pointed out Thursday by NewsBuster Matthew Balan, as the press report activities in Jena, Louisiana, the name of the white boy who was beaten by the "Jena 6," Justin Barker, is rarely mentioned, and the assault which precipitated the arrest of the "6" is either ignored, or downplayed.
Such was certainly the case on Thursday's "Nightly News" which led with the day's civil rights protests in Jena, but, for all intents and purposes, ignored the assault which precipitated the arrests of the six students in question.
Ironically, NBC's Brian Williams began the broadcast:
Can the Associated Press distinguish between racial supremacy groups and civil rights groups? Apparently not. AP writer Maria Sudekum Fisher covers the appointment of 73 year old Frances Semler to Kansas City's parks board, which Fisher opposes because Semler is a member of the Minutemen Civil Defense Corps. As Fisher writes,
But Frances B. Semler's appointment could now cost the city millions of dollars because she is a member of the Minuteman Civil Defense Corps, a group that advocates vigilante patrolling of the Mexican border and reports illegal immigrants to authorities.
Canadian news magazine Maclean's photoshopped George Bush into the familiar black beret, mustache and pseudo-military garb that defined the late Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein. This photo illustration accompanied a September 20 cover story that claimed Bush is the new Saddam because he's “reaching out the the late dictator's henchmen.”
In "How Bush Became the New Saddam," writer Patrick Graham described a decaying civilization that is doomed to fail in this rambling, disjointed article. He traveled around Iraq separately from the US military and even criticized journalists embedded with them because they “learn mostly about Americans...and end up sounding like a visiting columnist for the New York Times“ (my emphasis throughout). Ah yes, Canadians wouldn't want to echo that notoriously pro-military, pro-war and pro-American voice of the NY Times.
On CNN’s Larry King Live Thursday night, Dan Rather insisted that his $70 million lawsuit against CBS was an attempt to save “our democracy” from “big government interference and intimidation in news;” claimed once again that his 2004 60 Minutes story on President Bush’s National Guard service was correct “and I think most people know by now that it was correct;” and charged that CBS’s investigation was “a fraud. It was a setup.”
And when Larry King asked him about Peter Arnett — whose career at CNN ended over a fraudulent 1998 report alleging the U.S. murdered defectors and used nerve gas in Vietnam, and who was last seen making propaganda films for Saddam Hussein during the 2003 invasion of Iraq — Rather embraced him: “Peter Arnett is a great reporter. He was then and he is now.”
Earlier today I noted that in her HuffPo column, ex-CBS producer Mary Mapes continues to cling to the delusion that the Memogate documents were authentic. In an inteview on "Morning Joe," Dan Rather has now made a comparable reality-defying claim.
Mika Brzezinski, who, as was repeatedly pointed out, used to work at CBS and has friends on both sides of the issue, conducted the interview. Bubbles didn't have the gumption to challenge Rather regarding the forged documents at the heart of the story. Interestingly, Rather chose to raise the issue himself, and in doing so demonstrated his tenuous grip on reality and some twisted journalistic standards.