On the Thursday, April 24, All In with Chris Hayes, during a discussion of racist comments about black Americans by Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy, MSNBC political analyst Michael Eric Dyson compared those words to a recent statement by Wisconsin Republican Rep. Paul Ryan about the work ethic in the inner cities. [See video below.]
For the first time on their weekday evening newscasts, the broadcast networks picked up Cliven Bundy's standoff with the federal government – but only after Bundy's racist comments went viral and his conservative supporters denounced them.
Amidst what NBC called a "firestorm," the networks made sure to tie Bundy to the conservatives and Republicans who sympathized with his cause, but were then forced to condemn his racist comments. In fact, ABC's World News aired Fox News host Sean Hannity's support of the rancher but said nothing of Hannity's condemnation of his racist words.
On Tuesday's Hardball, fill-in host Joy Reid compared the Supreme Court upholding Michigan's ban on affirmative action to upholding white supremacy.
"If this court has a central narrative, it could be that those who have held the advantage for most of this country's history deserve to have it back if they can find the legislative or political means to take it back. If they do, the Court won't stand in the way," Reid ranted at the end of the show. [Audio here.]
In his story (saved here for future reference, fair use and discussion purposes — and in case it gets edited later today; Update: It did) on the Supreme Court's decision this morning upholding Michigan voters' 2006 approval of a ban on race-, ethnic- and gender-based preferences in university admissions, USA Today's Richard Wolf failed to identify the size of the court majority, which was 6-2. Justice Elena Kagan recused herself because she was previously the U.S. solicitor general before being named to the high court. The court's decision effectively upholds such bans in seven other states.
Additionally, by focusing on Justice Anthony Kennedy as "the man to watch," Wolf initially left many readers with the impression that only five justices, Kennedy and the four others usually describe as "conservative" (Roberts, Scalia, Thomas, and Alito) made the ruling. The fact is that they were also joined by Justice Stephen Breyer, one of the supposedly reliable "liberals." Excerpts follow the jump (bolds are mine throughout this post):
Shut up, Joe Scarborough explained. That was the Morning Joe host's advice today to people in Topeka, Kansas who are concerned that First Lady Michelle Obama's visit to the city's joint high school graduation ceremony will limit seating for family members and take the spotlight off the graduates themselves.
The man who makes his living offering his opinions and expressing his concerns instructed Kansans to "keep those concerns to yourself." Adding insult to injury, Scarborough called the Kansans' concerns "asinine." View the video after the jump.
Democratic Congressman Steve Israel, Chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, charged on Sunday that some of his GOP colleagues, as well as a "significant extent" of the GOP base, are racist, yet none of the broadcast networks picked it up on Monday evening.
On Sunday's State of the Union, CNN host Candy Crowley played a clip of House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi accusing GOP obstruction of the immigration bill as partly based on race. She asked Israel if he thought Republicans on Capitol Hill were racist. "Not all of them, no, of course not," he replied, before attacking the GOP base. [Video below the break.]
On the Monday, April 14, PoliticsNation, host Al Sharpton squeezed more mileage out of President Obama's Friday visit to the MSNBC host's National Action Network as Sharpton devoted another segment to the President's words criticizing new laws against voter fraud, with Sharpton accusing Republicans of "waging a war on voting rights." The PoliticsNation host had previously highlighted Obama's speech on Friday's show.
Ryan Grim of the Huffington Post soon joined Sharpton in going over the top as he accused Republicans of engaging in a "concerted effort" to "disenfranchise a vast block of voters," and of "trying to make" voting "illegal."
After a clip of President Obama addressing Sharpton's National Action Network on Friday, the MSNBC host recalled:
Did you know that white men are good for little more than making crystal meth? And that Americans are proudly belligerent and ignorant? At least according to Wonkette founder Ana Marie Cox, as expressed Friday night on "Real Time with Bill Maher" with her formulaic snark.
Cox was a guest on the show, along with GOP Rep. Duncan Hunter of California, actor Rob Lowe and left-wing journalist Matt Taibbi, and talking with them about drug decriminalization when she made the first of two gratuitous swipes, first at American men of pale skin hue, then at Americans in general. (Video, audio after the jump)
Conservative columnist George Will had some harsh words for liberals who play the race card as a way to demonize conservatives who oppose President Obama’s liberal agenda.
Appearing as a guest on Fox News Sunday on April 13, Will observed that “Liberalism has a kind of Tourette's syndrome these days. It’s just constantly saying the word racism and racist.” [See video below.]
On the Friday, April 11, PoliticsNation on MSNBC, host Al Sharpton led the show by pushing the liberal mantra that Republicans are in a "war on voting" as he highlighted President Obama's speech earlier that day to Sharpton's own left-wing National Action Network organization on the subject of voting rights.
And later in the show, as Sharpton hosted a segment dismissing the various Obama administration scandals, guest and liberal talk radio host Bill Press accused FNC audience members of being "dumb" as he asserted that California Republican Rep. Darrell Issa should be "on the payroll" of FNC head Roger Ailes.
MSNBC personalities frequently turn to race to explain away society’s ills, and on Thursday’s All In, host Chris Hayes cried racism on the topic of state Medicaid expansion under ObamaCare. Hayes started by admitting what many people have probably guessed about him and many of his fellow MSNBC hosts – that he sees American politics through a racial lens. He proclaimed:
“The racial prism I use to analyze American politics has grown sharper and I think in some ways more pessimistic in the Obama era. I will cop to that, unquestionably. Like, I do think, see things more thoroughly through the prism of race.” [Video below. MP3 audio here.]
Al Sharpton was thrust into the media spotlight this week thanks to newly released documents that detailed his role as an FBI informant in the 1980s. At the end of his MSNBC show PoliticsNation on Tuesday night, the reverend addressed the revelation, although he put his own spin on it to portray himself in the best possible light. [Video below. MP3 audio here.]
Sharpton claimed his involvement with the FBI arose out of a music industry dispute. He said “people who claimed to be mobsters” threatened to kill him if he didn’t stop demanding that black promoters be involved in promoting a Michael Jackson tour. This death threat supposedly led him to call the FBI and cooperate with them against those mobsters.
This year marks the 50th anniversary of the landmark Civil Rights Act and MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell chose to use the historic event to attack conservatives on her Andrea Mitchell Reports program.
Appearing on Wednesday April 9, Mitchell interviewed Congressman John Lewis (D-GA) about his experiences during the civil rights movement before turning to the subject of voting rights in America. Mitchell, following MSNBC talking points claimed “We see now in key states, where Republicans control the legislature, attempts to turn things back and create new barriers for people voting.” [See video below.]
Carrie Johnson's Monday report on NPR's Morning Edition could have been mistaken as an informercial for the left-of-center ACLU and the NAACP's efforts to help "protect minority voting rights," after the Supreme Court's Shelby County v. Holder decision from June 2013. Johnson played up how "a divided Supreme Court gutted part of that law – throwing into chaos a system that had required...states to ask for federal permission before making election changes."
All but one of the correspondent's talking heads during the segment were liberal activists who lamented the Court's decision, but she failed to point out their political ideology or that of the groups they represent. Johnson also singled out one attendee of the organizations' "training session," who attacked the Obama administration from the left:
The primary objection to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), created as part of the mammoth Dodd-Frank legislation passed in 2010, has been its unaccountability. It "is ensconced within the Federal Reserve," which frees it from congressional and presidential oversight. Even the Fed "is statutorily prohibited from 'intervening' in CFPB affairs."
It should surprise no one that Richard Cordray, the unaccountable agency's director, seems to believe that he and his kingdom are untouchable. Cordray, a Democrat who not coincidentally has been mentioned as a possible down-the-road candidate to be Ohio's governor, has, according to a whistleblower, presided over a "'pervasive' culture of intimidation and hostility within the bureau." Further, according to the Washington Free Beacon's coverage of the whistleblower's testimony at a House Committee on Financial Services hearing, Cordray personally told the whistleblower "to have her attorneys 'back down.'" a Wednesday story at the Politico by M.J. Lee represents nearly the full extent of establishment press coverage I could locate. Excerpts from Lee's Politico story follow the jump.
Over at what's left of Time Magazine's Time.com, Jon Friedman claims that Hall of Fame baseball player Hank Aaron "Would Have Faced Worse Racism Today" than he did in 1973 and 1974 as he edged ever closer to and then broke Babe Ruth's once thought unapproachable career record of 714 home runs. There is no doubt that Aaron faced significant adversity as he neared that record. In that pre-Internet, pre-social media era, he got his death threats the old fashioned way: via snail mail. The Lords of Baseball are said to have employed extra plainclothes security details behind home plate at Atlanta Braves home and away games in 1973.
If Friedman had written that anonymous death threats can be more easily deliverable these days, he might have had a point. But he didn't go there, instead writing as if it's an indisputable fact that "The home-run king is lucky he didn't have to contend with the ubiquitous bigots and haters on today's social media." If that were so obvious, you would think the the Time writer would have come up with better "proof" than the completely irrelevant examples he cited (HT Hot Air Headlines):
It’s Opening Day week and all things are new again. Except the fact that liberals won’t let us just be happy watching our sports. That’s not new. In fact, as anyone who’s read Roger Kahn’s “The Boys of Summer” knows, determined liberals have been trying to suck the joy out of the sporting endeavor for decades.
But it does seem that the space carved out for the care-free enjoyment of our favorite sports is shrinking a little bit every year. Sycophantic ESPN is being used to sell Obamacare in exchange for the president’s bracket picks. Obama’s now annual interview has been ruining the guacamole at Super Bowl parties since 2009.
MSNBC loves to find a racial controversy in the most unexpected of places and on Wednesday’s NewsNation, anchor Tamron Hall seized a golden opportunity to do just that. Hall brought on Sgt. Jasmine Jacobs, a soldier who started a White House petition asking the president to force the U.S. Army to reconsider its updated appearance and grooming regulations. [Video below. MP3 audio here.]
Hall explained the problem as she opened the story:
Question: Who are the most prominent public purveyors of Asian stereotypes and ethnic language-mocking in America? The right answer is liberal Hollywood and Democrats.
The wrong and slanderous answer is conservatives, which is what liberal performance artist/illegal-alien-amnesty lobbyist Stephen Colbert wants Americans to believe. Last week on his Comedy Central show, Colbert resurrected his "satirical" 2005 "Ching-Chong Ding-Dong" skit, in which he speaks in pidgin English with a grossly exaggerated accent. He used it in a boneheaded attempt to ridicule Republican football team owner Dan Snyder and others who defend the Washington Redskins' name.
What a relief to learn that race is no longer "a Republican or a Democrat issue," at least according to black liberal comedian W. Kamau Bell, one of the guests on Bill Maher's HBO show Friday night.
More accurately, race is no longer a partisan issue after first lady Michelle Obama is quoted saying something awkwardly similar to remarks from GOP congressman Paul Ryan that predictably resulted in liberals denouncing Ryan as racist. (Video after the jump)
Comedy Central’s Stephen Colbert found himself at the center of a controversy on Thursday stemming from a racially insensitive tweet posted to The Colbert Report Twitter account. The well-known satirist tried to distance himself from the tweet (now deleted) early Friday morning – even though it was almost a direct quote from his Wednesday night show. [Video below. MP3 audio here.]
Here is the offending tweet, posted on Thursday to the verified Twitter account of The Colbert Report:
On Thursday’s PoliticsNation on MSNBC, host Al Sharpton was irritated that Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) dared to suggest that President Obama should be more concerned about NSA spying because of our country’s history of civil rights leaders being spied upon. Sharpton thundered, “[W]ho is Rand Paul to make this point? This is a cynical use of race from some on the right.”
It was “cynical,” according to Sharpton, because some Republicans have done the opposite of Paul and criticized Obama when he does talk about race. But who is Al Sharpton to accuse someone else of the cynical use of race? The reverend has built his career by relentlessly exploiting racial issues. [Video below. MP3 audio here.]
In what may be a new low for MSNBC.com, writer Adam Serwer today all but compared Chief Justice John Roberts to his most infamous predecessor, Chief Justice Roger Taney, the author of the infamous 1857 Dred Scott decision.
"Shameful link in Voting Rights Act decision," blared the teaser headline in the lightbox at msnbc.com. "Legal scholars argue the decision striking down part of the Voting Rights Act is rooted in the Dred Scott decision, considered the worst in U.S. history," noted the photo caption [see screen capture at bottom of post]
On Tuesday, all three broadcast network evening newscasts devoted full reports to President Obama honoring 24 members of the military – only three still living – with the Medal of Honor. CBS Evening News anchor Scott Pelley trumpeted how the President "righted a historic wrong. He presented the nation's highest military award to 24 Americans, after a review determined that they had been passed over because they were Hispanic or African-American or Jewish." [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
However, during the fifth year of former President George W. Bush's presidency, the Big Three channels furiously covered the allegations against several U.S. Marines, who were accused of killing civilians in Iraq in November 2005. Between May 17 and June 7, 2006 – a three week period – ABC, CBS, and NBC devoted three and a half hours of air time to the accusations of misconduct. These same networks aired only 52 minutes of reporting on 20 military heroes from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq during a five-year period between September 2001 and June 2006.
Alabama Democratic State Representative Alvin Holmes, who recently created a firestorm by calling Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas "a very prolific Uncle Tom," was at it again on Tuesday.
This time, the issue at hand was a "fetal heartbeat" bill restricting abortions. Holmes, who apparently needs no help seeing racism in just about anything, claimed, in the words of Kala Kachmar at the Montgomery Advertiser, that "99 percent of the white legislators in the chamber would raise their hand to say they're against abortion, and that same 99 percent would make their daughters get an abortion if they were impregnated by a black man." Holmes was also robbed of his wallet and $300 earlier in the week. Guess which story was worthy of coverage at the Associated Press? With rare exceptions, the rest of the U.S. press also appears to have ignored Holmes' raging racism.
Few have defended the Obama administration, and especially Obamacare, as vocally and in my view often unreasonably, as Fox News's Juan Williams. He has gone so far as to call Republican Party opposition to Obamacare its "original sin," and absurdly claimed that "massive opposition" from Republicans is what forced HealthCare.gov's rushed rollout.
One blind spot Williams does not have involves how consistently horribly leftists treat African-American conservatives, or even African-Americans who express an occasional sensibly conservative thought. One reason the left is so brazen in its persecution attempts is its knowledge that no matter how uncivil or unreasonable, their attempts will almost never gain wide exposure in the nation's establishment press. The latest example concerns calls by the faculty at Rutgers University to prevent former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice from her scheduled appearance as commencement speaker there this year. Williams expressed his outrage in a Thursday Fox News column (HT Hot Air; bolds are mine):
Law professor and conservative/libertarian blogger Eugene Volokh has an excellent takedown of the noxious racism of one Randa Jarrar. The Palestinian-American writer published a screed at the left-wing online magazine Salon [see screen capture here] on Tuesday entitled, "Why I can’t stand white belly dancers." The long and short of it is that Ms. Jarrar views as "unwittingly racist" the practice of say a woman of European descent "appropriating" belly dancing by, well, belly-dancing at say an Arab restaurant (presumably for tips). Ms. Jarrar compared such a thing to both to drag queen performances -- wait, isn't that comparison "homophobic"? -- and the long-discredited practice of white performances doing a blackface routine.
Enter Mr. Volokh, who thoroughly eviscerated Ms. Jarrar's claims while slamming the hypocrisy of a liberal publication proudly printing such racist garbage, when they wouldn't dream of -- and rightly so -- printing someone denouncing say an Asian person performing a classical music piece (emphasis mine):
Sunny Hostin blasted an Indiana mall's ban of people wearing raised hoodies on Thursday's New Day: "This is...akin, in my view...to 'stop and frisk' – to the pretext of 'stop and frisk' – and I think many courts have found that this type of behavior is unacceptable, and downright unconstitutional."
The CNN legal analyst also contended that "'hoodie' is code for 'thug' in many places," and later claimed that "to identify just hoodies in my view...it's very, very clear what we're talking about here. We're talking about racial profiling. It's code for racial profiling." [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
In December, NPR, the New York Times, National Journal, and other establishment press platforms gave the Republican National Committee grief over the following tweet: "Today we remember Rosa Parks' bold stand and her role in ending racism." The tweet erronseously shortened the following sentence from a longer GOP statement: "“We remember and honor Rosa Parks today for the role she played in fighting racism and ending segregation." Juliet Lapidos at the Times noted that the tweet was corrected in 3-1/2 hours, and seemed to lament that it took so long.
Reading the transcript isn't enough. Roll the video, listen carefully, and at the end you'll catch Ronan Farrow's nervous little laugh as he asks an African-American guest whether, in assessing movie-industry diversity, it "matters" that Steve McQueen, the black director whose film has been nominated for an Oscar, is British.
Such are the PC pitfalls once one wades into the bog of diversity bean-counting. But beyond the specific subject matter, Farrow's teensy twitter suggests, as other critics have noted, as here and here, how green and unsure of himself is the young man MSNBC hopes to make a star. View the video after the jump.