Among the very few Huffington Post bloggers willing to break the predictable liberal mold is John Ridley (pictured) who has frequently appeared as a guest panelist on Joe Scarborough's Morning Joe show on MSNBC. Although many of Ridley's previous opinions might have made the Huffington Post readers somewhat uncomfortable, I doubt that any of his other postings sparked the firestorm of outrage of his July 31 blog, The Left Fringe Needs to Quit Being Scared of the Fox. The only problem I have with that title is that it isn't just the "Left Fringe" that is afraid of appearing on Fox. It is also the mainstream Democrats, including such pandering presidential candidates as John Edwards and Barack Obama.
Wednesday's CBS Evening News trumpeted two liberal efforts to expand government power, leading by heralding “landmark legislation” to have the FDA regulate cigarettes followed by a story slanted in favor of, as reporter Thalia Assuras described it, an “historic expansion of health care coverage for children” of the “working poor.” Assuras, however, ignored such inconvenient facts as how a family of four with an income as high as $82,600 could get on the taxpayers' dole. Katie Couric had teased her top story: “Tonight, landmark legislation that supporters say could save millions of lives. Congress takes a step toward regulating everything about cigarettes for the first time ever.”
Next, Couric introduced a look at “getting medical coverage for the millions of American children who don't have it.” Assuras touted how a proposed expansion of the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) “boosts funding by $50 billion over five years, almost doubling the number of uninsured kids covered from the current six million children to about 11 million.” Sinking to the all too common media technique of exploiting a victim to push a liberal policy, Assuras cited “children like seven-year-old Pilar Edwards whose ear ache was so severe her mother brought her to this mobile medical clinic where she could get help even though Pilar is uninsured.” Assuras did pass along how critics contend “the legislation is a slippery slope toward a universal health care plan,” but against two negative soundbites, viewers heard from four advocates as Assuras concluded with a Senator's charge that “it would be a travesty if the President vetoed this legislation,” followed by these final words from Assuras: “With kids caught in the middle.” More like taxpayers.
Arizona senator John McCain is certainly one of the best-known Republican presidential candidates but that notoriety hasn't helped him much when it comes to winning over the conservative base. He hasn't been helped by his support for the recent immigration bill debacle but I think McCain's overall problem has been that he is perceived as a sellout to the left, particularly the media left.
With his support continuing to plummet by the day, McCain doesn't have a lot of chances left to get back in the good graces of the GOP. Over at Slate (h/t Glenn Reynolds), Mickey Kaus wonders if the only chance McCain has left is to turn on his old friends in the liberal media:
Airing tonight on Soapnet is a new reality show called “The Fashionista Diaries.” The show documents six newcomers to the cutthroat fashion industry and, like most reality shows out there, would be hard to distinguish if not for its advertisements, which use Communist imagery and slogans for promotion. (side-by-side comparison shown at right)
The main graphic for the ads has a woman dressed up like Che Guevara wearing a beret and sunglasses complete with a Communist red star. The slogan placed with the picture is "the revolution will be accessorized."
According to CNN business reporter Ali Velshi, the relationship between oil and gas prices is difficult to grasp.
"A lot of folks are saying, 'Why have my gas prices come down 17 or 18 cents in the last couple weeks when oil prices are going up?'" said Velshi on the August 1 "American Morning."
Trust me Ali, that's not what I've heard at the pump.
"Well, I hope we've all figured out there's no way, there's no mathematician in the world who can figure out the relationship between gas and oil prices, but you can expect with oil up at 78 bucks a barrel, gas prices will soon follow and that takes things—that takes money out of the pockets of consumers who keep this economy going," he continued.
But Velshi, has not always had such a tough time making sense out of oil and gas economics.
Due to a bug in Internet Explorer 7, several NB readers have had trouble getting into the site. We're working on the issue. In the mean time, I recommend you download the Mozilla Firefox web browser onto your computer as it does not have the bug.
Update 19:23. The problem should be fixed now. Please post a comment on here if you continue to have troubles with IE 7.
What follows are Klein's complaints from his August 1 "Swampland" blog post, followed by my snarky translation:
--it doesn't mandate that insurance companies cover everyone at the same rate, regardless of pre-existing conditions (community rating).
Who cares if you're a chain-smoking, trans fat-loving, Burger King-is-your-second home kinda guy with diabetes, high cholesterol and a coronary bypass under your belt? Health insurance companies shouldn't charge you a penny more than the marathon-running vegan next door whose idea of splurging is a little extra sugar in his mango strawberry soy milk smoothie.
You'd think it was the news media that "got a raise" last week for all the cheering. The federal minimum wage was increased on July 24 by 70 cents to $5.85 an hour and will go up by the same amount in 2008 and 2009.
CNN's Ali Velshi gleefully greeted the change on "American Morning" July 24. He called it "unmitigated good news."
ABC's Claire Shipman also called it "good news for thousands of low-paid workers," on "Good Morning America" the same day.
I've already left my suggestions. If you're on Facebook, you can join their group and place yours. With its solidly liberal blogger bullpen and wildly liberal fan base (read the comments threads on an empty stomach), the blog could use a conservative voice to bring in balance in reporting and analysis of the '08 race and the Democratic Congress.
Who says the MSM only report bad news? An online ABC News story reports that emigration from the US to Canada has increased dramatically . . . and that the departees are largely liberals. Hollywood stars never get around to making good on their promises to leave. But many everyday liberal folks are apparently carrying through on their plans.
In another example of hand-wringing, excessive, faux compassion that ignores the real statistics, the Charlotte Observer has given space to one of their writers to vent against the evil gun, once again. I love how these people want to present themselves as more "caring" than an evil, stupid gun owner, yet their "compassion" is predicated not on facts, but on mere feelings.
The Observer's Dannye Romine-Powell (God save us from another hyphenated named liberal) gets all amush over the "unruffled thinking" of her gun hating husband and tries her hand at citing statistics to such poor effect... poor once some perspective and reality is brought to bear on the issue, that is.
Democratic catfights are usually papered over on liberal networks. But NBC’s Wednesday morning coverage of the ongoing battle between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama over his goofy declaration to meet with America-hating tyrants without preconditions came jam-packed with words of praise for Bill Clinton, the "peacemaker" of the duel. Matt Lauer began: "Now to Bill Clinton, peacemaker. Every president would like that label but they don't normally get it for keeping the peace between their own party's candidates, especially when one of them happens to be his wife." Lauer later added that Clinton is an "elder statesman" and "experienced voice of reason" within the Democratic fold.
In David Gregory’s story, viewers witnessed the usual Bill-adoring lingo from John Harwood, CNBC's chief Washington correspondent: "One of the things that we know about Bill Clinton is that his political instincts are second to none, and if he thinks that there's a dangerous point in this fight with Barack Obama that's a pretty good sign that Hillary Clinton ought to back off a little bit."
Normally liberal media snobbery is irritating (and career-threatening if you're a young conservative journalist), but not when that snobbery is completely ineffectual to stop the thing which the whiney reporters hate. Schadenfreude is the word of the day after reading this Los Angeles Times piece about how "aghast" many reporters in the Wall Street Journal newsroom are at being employed by the son of Satan himself, Rupert Murdoch:
Reporters reacted bitterly to the prospect of Murdoch's gaining control of the Journal, which has long been regarded as a beacon of financial journalism.
They voiced concern that Murdoch would diminish the paper's quality, imbue it with some of the glitzy style of his crosstown New York Post and slant the Journal's news coverage to advance his business interests.
"People are aghast that this could have happened," said one reporter, who like others spoke on condition on anonymity. "It's a sickening realization to know that this really great iconic newspaper is [not only] no longer going to be independent, but is also going to be controlled by a man whose values are inimical to ours." [...]
During the month of July, CNN's "Larry King Live" both began and ended with interviews of vice presidents. On July 5, host Larry King interviewed former vice president Al Gore. On July 31, King interviewed sitting vice president Dick Cheney. The difference between the two interviews is like night and day. King, for the most part, did not press Gore for an answer to his questions, and asked a few light questions (such as, "How did you get Madonna?" for "Live Earth"). On the other hand, King's questions to Cheney pressed the vice president on a number of hot political topics (for example, "General Powell says he would close Guantanamo yesterday. Would you?" and the oh-so-typical follow-up, "You have to torture them when they're there?") and the interview was almost completely serious.
On a regular basis, anthropogenic global warming skeptics wonder how folks like soon-to-be-Dr. Al Gore and his band of not so merry climate change sycophants can so easily get seemingly intelligent people to buy their junk science hook, line, and sinker.
With this in mind, the comedy duo of Penn and Teller set out to see whether they could get people at an Earth Day rally called "WorldFest" to sign a petition banning water.
For those unfamiliar, this was the "6th Annual WorldFest, a solar-powered celebration of music, the environment, animals, health and social consciousness" held at Woodley Park in Encino, California, April 2006.
Penn Jillette marvelously described their intentions (absolutely hysterical video available here, grateful h/t to Gary Hall):
Video (0:55):Real (1.51 MB) or Windows (1.74 MB), plus MP3 audio (305 kB)
As part of a new segment on the "Today" show called "Candidate Cribs," NBC's Jonathan Alter went on a cab ride, with Democratic candidate Mike Gravel behind the wheel. However, Alter received more than a calm cruise through the city from the former Alaskan senator. In a gimmicky stunt, meant to showcase the candidate's past life as a New York City cabbie, Alter slid into the back seat for a ride but just after Gravel started griping about Iraq he crashed the taxi.
Alter: "Gravel is best remembered for helping end the Vietnam era draft with a filibuster and for reading the Pentagon Papers in the Senate. Now, after a quarter-century out of politics, he's an angry Rip Van Winkle."
Gravel: "I know how to get out of Iraq. I know how to affect the solution, it's a diplomatic solution."
On Wednesday’s "Good Morning America," ABC reporters offered advice to Dick Cheney on how to resuscitate his "rock bottom poll numbers." The network featured clips from a Bush-bashing cartoon and correspondent Cokie Roberts even suggested that if the Vice President wants to change his image, he needs to do it on "Jon Stewart and maybe talk to Doonesbury."
The Claire Shipman-hosted segment, which played like a media victory lap over Cheney’s unpopularity, also featured snarky comments, such as this dig about the Vice President briefly taking over for George W. Bush during his colonoscopy in July:
Claire Shipman: "He was even acting president for a few hours during the President's recent colonoscopy. Did he dream about taking on Iran? No, he says. He wrote a letter for his grandkids and then made it public."
When liberals aren't taunting conservatives with death wishes, they will often, under a guise of concern, talk of how hopefully this brush with fate will give the conservative a more humane, compassionate, less restrictive outlook on life (i.e., become a Democrat).
There's an undercurrent of that in New York Times Supreme Court reporter Linda Greenhouse's "Supreme Court Memo," "Uncertainty Now in a Golden Youth's Trajectory," on Chief Justice John Roberts' seizure. Greenhouse evidently hoped that Roberts' brush with fallibility will soften the whiz-kid conservative's heart.
Barbara Walters announced that comedian, actress, and liberal activist Whoopi Goldberg will take Rosie O'Donnell's place as the moderator on "The View." Barbara Walters made the announcement.
"Today is the day we have been waiting for. You are about to meet the new moderator of 'The View' and we are thrilled. She is brilliant. She is funny. She's an enormous talent. She's an Oscar winning actress, a Broadway superstar. And we have her. Please join us in welcoming Whoopi Goldberg."
Although she will likely be less controversial than Rosie she does have a history of left wing remarks.
Most recently, as a guest co-host of her new show, Whoopi railed that "nobody as a right to burn [their own Dixie Chicks CD's]" and "burning them in public brings on 1933."
Update/retraction (13:11): Missed the update on LGF. It is in fact an image of a mosque in Brunei. My apologies to CAIR and to NewsBusters readers.
"Little Green Footballs" noticed yesterday that the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), which is cheering the impending crimes prosecution of a Pace University student for putting a Koran in a toilet, depicted the US Capitol dome as though it were the dome of a mosque. Gone was the Statue of Freedom that graces a pedestal atop the cast-iron dome (see picture at right)
Now imagine if the Catholic League photoshopped the cross-topped dome of St. Peter's Basilica or if the Christian Coalition replaced Freedom with country church bell tower in an image endorsing its "American-Christian Voter Survey." Something tells me the media would not find some cynical way to round up liberal critics who would allege those conservative Christian groups want to turn the federal government into a theocracy.
Blogger Michelle Malkin has an excellent item today at RealClearPolitics.com about how the media have a lack of interest in stories about Christian missionaries kidnapped, brutalized, and tortured at the hands of Islamist terrorists. Here's an excerpt, after which I share my thoughts on what we could expect to see from the biased media should some of the South Korean missionaries make it back alive and find themselves interviewed on say "Dateline NBC":
The blood of innocent Christian missionaries spills on Afghan sands. The world watches and yawns. The United Nations offers nothing more than a formal expression of "concern." Where is the global uproar over the human rights abuses unfolding before our eyes?
Climate change alarmism met the infamous Oil for Food scam at the United Nations Tuesday.
As a result, if you had any questions regarding why the U.N. has been the point-man on driving global warming hysteria throughout America and around the world, they were all answered.
In fact, the genie was let out of the proverbial bottle by this Reuters headline: "U.N. Climate Change Meeting Aims at Rich Countries."
As Jeffrey Jones was fond of saying in the movie "Amadeus" while playing the part of Emperor Joseph II, "Well, there it is."
More evidence that the U.N.'s interest is just to take money from wealthy nations - mostly America, of course - and redistribute it internationally was found all over the body of the article (grateful h/t NBer dscott, emphasis added throughout):
An editorial in today’s Wall Street Journal tweaks the New York Times and other liberal critics of Rupert Murdoch’s takeover of the Journal. Noting how some of the fussier media outlets are competing with the Journal at a time when all newspapers are fighting the Internet tide, “readers can judge if the tears these papers and their writers claim to shed for the Journal's future are real, or of the crocodile variety.”
As for the ideology Murdoch’s News Corp. might bring to the Journal, the editors of the famously conservative editorial page mocked: “The nastiest attacks have come from our friends on the political left. They can't decide whose views they hate most — ours, or Mr. Murdoch's. We're especially amused by those who say Mr. Murdoch might tug us to the political left. Don't count on it.”
Something possibly to discuss: Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) said yesterday that the U.S. should be willing to attack al Qaeda inside Pakistan with or without Pakistan's permission. This from someone that wants an immediate withdrawal of American troops from Iraq. Any thoughts?
Rival newspapers are not calmly reporting the news that Rupert Murdoch has sealed the deal to buy The Wall Street Journal for a royal sum. The Washington Post front page headline today makes Rupert sound like he came in with tanks, not just cash: "Murdoch Seizes Wall St. Journal In $5 Billion Coup." Liberals must really see this tycoon as some sort of press-baron version of Pinochet.
In New York, competing papers made it sound more like Rupert won another prize, like he bought a new yacht. "Dow Jones Deal Gives Murdoch a Coveted Prize," wrote The New York Times on its front page. "Rupe takes the prize: Wall Street Journal owners selling out to peddler of Post" was a headline in the New York Daily News.
Don't look for Arianna Huffington to be sitting down to a chummy luncheon with Hillary Clinton anytime soon. Huffington has been no fan of Clinton for some time, considering her insufficiently, and inauthentically, anti-war. But on today's "Morning Joe," Huffington took her animus to another level, accusing Hillary of an ultimate Dem sin: "swiftboating" an opponent, namely Barack Obama.
HUFFINGTON POST FOUNDER ARIANNA HUFFINGTON: After the CNN debate, I think it was ridiculous the way she and her campaign attacked Obama for saying he would engage in diplomatic talks with dictators. That is sort of a classic example of swiftboating your opponent. Like the equivalent of what Republicans do anytime Democrats call for troop withdrawal and they are talking about "cutting and running" or "precipitous withdrawal" or any of the clever little phrases.
Well, the L.A.Times certainly followed the Democratic National Committee's stylebook for reporting the news with this one, it is obvious. In a story about the new "sweeping ethics bill" making its way through Congress this week, they mention all the Republican corruption they can dredge up, but somehow miss every single Democrat example of the same. They also misreport a Nancy Pelosi rules change that makes it seem as if she is a corruption fighter when the truth is that she backed off from the very rule the Times cites as an example of how "ethical" the House is! This one is a perfect example of partisan, agenda driven "reporting," for sure.
So, the L.A.Times gives us the hero Democrat Party who has quashed that "culture of corruption" and cleaned up Congress' "sullied image." Yaaa, Democrats and boo Republicans who are so "corrupt." Read on for some fair-and-balancedness that'll curl yer hair!
Though many journalists impose their views regularly in biased political coverage, and last year the New York Times publisher made clear his left-wing world view, on Tuesday night the broadcast networks framed Rupert Murdoch's acquisition of the Wall Street Journal around what agenda the “controversial” Murdoch will “impose.” That matches the “fear” expressed in online journalism forums and media magazines about Murdoch's “conservative” agenda. Leading into pro and con soundbites, CBS's Kelly Wallace described Murdoch as “a conservative who put his imprint on the New York Post and brought topless women to the Sun in London. His critics say he may not impose tabloid on the Journal, but will impose his point of view.”
NBC's Andrea Mitchell called Murdoch “a controversial press lord” and declared Murdoch “deeply conservative,” but noted he's also a “pragmatic” man who has been “a supporter of liberal politicians.” Mitchell relayed how Murdoch insists he “does not mix politics and business,” but, she cautioned, “still, some are skeptical.” The liberal Ken Auletta of The New Yorker contended Murdoch “often” uses “his publications and his media to advance either his business or his political interests.” Over on ABC, David Muir warned that Murdoch “already wields great power over much of what we watch and read” and asserted that “critics caution being a brilliant businessman does not guarantee brilliant journalism.” After a soundbite from Auletta about how Murdoch's politics influence his publications, Muir worried: “For that reason, this has turned into a painful decision for members of the Bancroft family, who controlled the Wall Street Journal for more than 100 years. Sell for $5 billion? Or is that selling out? There were tears within the Bancroft family and fears in the newsroom.” On screen, a WSJ headline: “Fear, Mixed with Some Loathing; Many Reporters at Wall Street Journal Fret Over Murdoch's Arrival.”