Government Agencies

By Tom Blumer | March 18, 2015 | 11:22 PM EDT

Many media myths won't die because those who should know better — and I believe in many cases do know better, and don't care — perpetuate them.

One can't divine his mindset, but Politico's Michael Crowley, in his coverage of Benjamin Netanyahu's resounding Tuesday electoral victory, did his part to continue the myth that the Israeli Prime Minister's "March 3 speech to Congress (was) arranged by Speaker John Boehner behind the Obama White House’s back." It wasn't, and claiming that it was a million times won't change that.

By Tom Blumer | March 16, 2015 | 10:06 AM EDT

After his appearance yesterday on ABC's "This Week," Hillary Clinton may be wondering whose side James Carville is on.

Never mind Carville's frequent and rude interruptions of other guests, his seemingly calculated incoherence, and his false claims about the Clintons' past record of corruption. Even though that behavior doesn't represent the Clintons well, they have to know that's part of the package when they use Carville as a defender. What wasn't expected is that Mr. Mary Matalin would admit that Mrs. Clinton may have set up her private server at her home in Chappaqua, New York specifically to hamper any future efforts by congress to carry out its consitutionally assigned oversight functions. But he did, as will be seen after the jump.

By Seton Motley | March 16, 2015 | 9:26 AM EDT

As we know - America’s media is for the most part decidedly Leftist, often befuddled and rarely right.  So when they wade into an intricate issue like President Barack Obama’s Net Neutrality Internet power grab - we can only expect even more Leftism, befuddlement and wrongness.

On February 26, the Obama Administration’s Federal Communications Commission (FCC) pretended to be Congress and rewrote law.  To suddenly start regulating the Internet under the 1934 Telecommunications Act - under rules written to regulate the landline telephone. 

By Tom Blumer | March 15, 2015 | 11:09 PM EDT

Here is a clear case of media reluctance to acknowledge a drop-dead obvious fact — one even the often fact-averse New York Times has admitted.

In an 8:40 p.m. report tonight, Jim Salter at the Associated Press spent eight paragraphs avoiding any mention of the race of Jeffrey Williams, the 20 year-old man arrested today and charged in connection with the shooting of two Ferguson, Missouri police officers on Thursday. Finally, in paragraph 9, the AP reporter only partially relented, writing that "Williams, who St. Louis County Police Chief Jon Belmar said is black, is being held on $300,000 bond." An easily found mugshot of Williams relating to a prior arrest indicates that the law enforcement system classified him as black six months ago:

By Tom Blumer | March 14, 2015 | 10:26 AM EDT

The only surprise should be that anyone is surprised.

Those who are used to how frequently the word "unexpectedly" appears in reports about disappointing economic data certainly won't be at all shocked at a Friday Bloomberg News report by Steve Matthews and A. Catarina Saraiva telling readers that "U.S. economic data have been falling short of prognosticators' expectations by the most in six years." The report has three problems. First, it treats the latest U.S. jobs news as an upside surprise, when it's really the result of difficult-to-justify seasonal adjustments. Second, it acts as if the appearance of lots of downside surprises in key areas is a recent phenomenon. Finally, it fails to explain a likely underlying cause, namely that Keynesian-trained economists and analysts can't imagine that their models might be misleading them.

By Tom Blumer | March 12, 2015 | 2:30 PM EDT

Less than five hours after its release, the government's news that retail sales fell by 0.6 percent in February — compared to a 0.3 percent increase expected by economists and analysts — is buried way down (about 6-8 screens, depending on your computer) on the home page of Bloomberg News, where the focus is supposed to be on developments in business and the economy.

Instead, the web site's main top-of-page story on its home page at 1:30 p.m. Eastern Time was about how "you" are getting richer. No, really:

By Tom Blumer | March 11, 2015 | 11:11 AM EDT

The University of Notre Dame won an important victory at the Supreme Court Monday morning when the Court acted in its case involving Obamacare's contraception mandate. Its "GVR" order (grant, vacate, remand) granted Notre Dame a "writ of certorari," vacated a lower court ruling against the school which would have forced it comply or face severe penalties, and remanded the case back to that lower court for reconsideration in light of the higher court's Hobby Lobby ruling last year.

In response, the Associated Press issued a terse, unbylined four-paragraph "We have to cover it, but we'll be damned if we attach any importance to it" report later that morning. After the jump, I'll compare AP's output to a far more accurate and thorough writeup by NewsBusters alum Matt Hadro at Catholic News Agency which recognized the potentially far-reaching implications of the court's move.

By Tom Blumer | February 28, 2015 | 6:26 PM EST

After yesterday's government report on economic growth reduced the fourth quarter's originally estimated increase in gross domestic product from an annualized 2.6 percent to 2.2 percent, you just knew that the Associated Press, aka the Administration's Press, would try to ride to the rescue.

Late Friday afternoon, the AP's Martin Crutsinger gamely tried to concoct five reasons why we shouldn't worry our pretty little heads over a growth figure which confirms that the worst post-World War II recovery on record continues to be the worst post-World War II recovery on record. He only came up with four highly questionable reasons, while pretending he still had five (bolds and numbered tags are mine; I also numbered the reporter's reasons):

By Tom Blumer | February 28, 2015 | 9:45 AM EST

On Friday morning at Jezebel, a Gawker-affiliated web site, Natasha Vargas-Cooper thought she had Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker by the — well, you know.

In a post tellingly tagged "Conservative Werewolves," Vargas-Cooper was absolutely sure — so certain that she apparently felt no need to check any further — that Walker's proposed budget would allow its colleges to "to stop reporting sexual assaults." Vicious vitriol ensued (bolds are mine throughout this post):

By Tom Blumer | February 27, 2015 | 11:28 PM EST

A couple of thousand protesters have showed up to rail against the Wisconsin Legislature's move to pass right to work legislation this week.

That number is far smaller than what was seen four years ago, when Badger State Governor Scott Walker championed Act 10, a budget repair bill which limited — but please note, contrary to frequent press assertions, did not eliminate — most public-sector unions' collective bargaining rights. Todd Richmond's Wednesday evening coverage of the situation in Madison at the Associated Press got plenty of perspectives from union members and others upset with the legislature's latest move, but predictably failed to get any insights from right to work supporters or those skeptical of protesters' positions. Excerpts follow the jump (bolds and numbereed tags are mine):

By Tom Blumer | February 27, 2015 | 9:01 PM EST

The Fiscal Times is a generally strong and informative online publication. That said, it has occasionally exhibits symptoms of what could be seen as either serious leftist bias, quite disappointing ignorance, or both.

One such example arrived in my email box early this morning. It contained the following headline and opening tease for a story about the food stamp program:

By Tom Blumer | February 26, 2015 | 11:12 PM EST

At the Associated Press late Thursday morning, Ken Dilanian, the wire service's intelligence writer, did a marvelous job of covering up the essence of Director of National Intelligence James Clapper's Worldwide Threat Assessment testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee.

The trouble is that if he were doing his job as our Founders anticipated he would when they gave the nation's press extraordinary and then unheard-of freedoms, he would have covered the story instead of covering it up.