I have never seen, from a supposedly serious media establishment, a more hate filled rant against a particular state in this great country than this screed against Florida in the Washington Post. Granted, writer Libby Copeland has spewed hate filled rants in the past, but this one is particularly mean-spirited. Copeland seems to hate the elderly who've moved to Florida, she hates the business community there, appears to scoff at the asylum seekers from Cuba that settled there, and claims that all dreams die there. And what does it all boil down to? Al Gore's loss in the 2000 election, naturally! At this rate, I'd suggest she not vacation in Florida in the near future after this slam on everything Sunshine State.
Ostensibly, Copeland is using the fact that Florida is seemingly the end of Rudy Giuliani's road to the White House as the excuse for her evisceration of the state. According to Copeland, dreams are dashed in Florida just like Rudy's were. She warns us to "Beware of the Sunshine State, Where It's Easy To Get Burned," and thinks that Florida's good days are behind her, stranded in the 1970's, "since those were the good days for Florida."
In the wake of Hillary Clinton's 2-1 thrashing in South Carolina at the hands of the politician I typically refer to as BOOHOO (Barack O-bombaOverseas Hussein “Obambi” Obama), the spin from Mrs. Clinton's husband is that it has no more significance than Jesse Jackson's Palmetto State victories in 1984 and 1988.
Teenagers who tumble from the bed to a sudden pregnancy often face this reaction from the people surrounding them: These poor kids made a mistake, yes. But they don’t have the maturity to bring a life into the world. It would ruin their lives, and they would probably be irresponsible and resentful parents. Admitting their immaturity and having an abortion is the truly mature choice.
That might sound like a formulaic TV movie of the week. But then comes “Juno,” the quirky, arty film with a completely different take – and it’s taking the movie world by storm.
An article in Wednesday’s Albany Times-Union carried the deceptive title "35 years pass, but not debate: Demonstrations mark 1973 high court ruling affirming right to abortion." Instead of covering any of the various pro-life or pro-choice demonstrations over the past few days, the Times-Union spent the bulk of article discussing a ceremony at a new Planned Parenthood facility in Albany where local clergy "blessed" the clinic. Only two sentences mentioned that "Capital Region activists joined voices with their counterparts nationwide to mark the day" and that the annual March for Life was being held in Washington, DC.
The article, written by Times-Union staff writer Carol DeMare, quoted several "pro-choice" clergy who took part in the "blessing" ceremony. Rev. Larry Phillips of Schenectady, New York's Emmanuel-Friedens Church described the new Planned Parenthood center as "sacred and holy ... where women's voices and stories are welcomed, valued and affirmed; sacred ground where women are treated with dignity, supported in their role as moral decision-makers ... sacred ground where the violent voices of hatred and oppression are quelled."
Mark Moring has an interesting read at Christianity Today's Web site. He recalls all the popular movies in 2007 that feature life-affirming responses to unexpected pregnancy in films such as "Knocked Up," "Waitress," "Juno," "Bella," and "August Rush.":
To some, it was a year of war movies and "statement" flicks—including In the Valley of Elah, Lions for Lambs, and Rendition. Meanwhile, David Poland of Movie City News declared 2007 "Oscar's Year of the Man," noting that of the top sixteen contenders for best picture, only three were headlined by women.
But others noticed a different trend: In some ways, 2007 was the Year of Pro-Life Cinema.
Ordinarily there wouldn't be a link between an awards ceremony and the anniversary of legally sanctioned abortion. But this was before "Juno."
Today marks the 35th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court case which gave women access to legal abortions. This morning the Academy Award nominees were also announced, and "Juno," a movie in which a teenage girl chooses adoption over abortion, scored nominations for Best Actress, Best Original Screenplay, Best Director and Best Picture.
The concept of "sex education" has been a stomping ground for controversy for at least fifty years, probably as long as the apostles of "openness" have argued that parents in general do a terrible job of talking birds and bees with their offspring, and the public schools needed to expose children to a "frank" and "comprehensive" curriculum on How to Have Sex, complete with the pessimistic (or in their case, neutral) assumption that children will be irreversibly aggressive sexual beings.
All of which pales in comparison to what is not being taught on the Internet, where some outrageous amateurs have figured out how to outdo the bureaucratic "sex education" lobby. One new website calls itself "The Midwest Teen Sex Show." Its logo is a silhouette of two cows copulating. It is a series of infomercials for "comprehensive" adolescent indulgence.
Target department stores apparently haven't gotten the memo that dissing the Internet and bloggers can be a dangerous game for a retailer these days. And, Target isn't just dissing blogges and "non-traditional media" they might be claiming they won't even interact with them. All this over a new advertisement that shows a woman in Winter clothing, spread-eagled atop the Target logo, the center of which appears right between the model's spread legs. Just what the "target" here is, can be a pertinent question to ask and several consumer advocates are asking just that question.
The Democratic presidential race is turning into a snippy identity-politics battle waged around the question: Is America more racist or more sexist? Is America too racist to deserve Barack Obama? Or too sexist to deserve Hillary Clinton? Liberals think this is a real puzzler, since they assume America is bigoted both ways. It’s going to be a long, America-accusing election year no matter who wins.
This is nuts. Our system of laws in this country contains energetic remedies for discrimination against blacks and women. Discriminatory attitudes still exist in isolated, politically irrelevant pockets whose existence is then magnified one hundred-fold by those in the media who want this picture of discrimination to exist. Blacks and women simply are not as a rule denied their humanity, as evidenced by a black and a woman vying to become America’s next president.
If we don’t want this year to be an exercise in liberal accusation and intimidation, we should force the Democratic front-runners to answer a different question. If we want to identify the one segment of American humanity that is routinely disregarded, we should ask them: when will you recognize the civil rights and humanity of the unborn baby? When will America overcome this injustice of destroying human lives in the name of "choice"?
The '80s are back -- Sylvester Stallone has prepped another "Rambo" movie, Chuck Norris is an Internet icon and Mr. T is doing commercials. Alex Williams tackled the "trend" for the Sunday Styles section of the New York Times, "Tough Guys for Tough Times." Williams' story is a retread in its own way; the first sentence below in particular could have been been found 20 years ago in any college rag, pretentiously penned by an earnest liberal student straining for profundity:
"The leading action symbols of the Reagan era -- with all their excess, jingoism and good vs. evil bombast -- have returned, as outsize and obvious as they were in the decade of stonewash. Yet as stars of prime-time hits and feature films (not to mention Republican mascots), these actors are still as ripped and imposing as they were 20 years ago, and they continue to carry an undeniable authority with fans old and new."
Williams cracked on insecure conservative men, albeit in code ("likely not Hillary Clinton supporters"):
In Brent Bozell’s culture column this week, Brent tackles the new Lifetime reality show oh-so-tastefully called "How to Look Good Naked." Brent reveals how the cable-TV elite has again displayed their knee-jerk tendency to tweak and tempt the public to watch by promising more skin and more emphasis on public discussion of skin-deep sexiness – even when it’s pitched as advice and cheerleading for confidence-impaired women are too heavy, too tall, too masculine, too outside the beauty cookie-cutter.
The naughty parts of the show are designed to distinguish it from the fully-clothed makeover shows it copied (think TLC’s "What Not to Wear"). The premise is inspirational – everyone’s supposed to root for the compassionate star/gay genie Carson Kressley and his magical mission to help women love themselves more in their own skin:
Following a segment on Monday wondering if America was "finally color-blind" in the wake of Barack Obama’s Iowa caucus win, on Friday’s CBS "Early Show," co-host Harry Smith seemed to say no as he previewed a segment on recent comments made about Tiger Woods: "Also coming up in this half hour words that wound, Tiger Woods reacts to a racial slur from a Golf Channel anchor."
During the segment, Smith talked to the liberal Reverend Al Sharpton and liberal former New York radio host Ron Kuby about the comments. Smith began by observing: "...for years we've been navigating a changing world when it comes to racially insensitive remarks, but with the Don Imus incident, the national dialogue has changed a lot." Smith then played the clip of Golf Channel Anchor Kelly Tilghman who suggested that the only way for other golfers to beat Tiger Woods was to "lynch him in a back alley." However, Smith also mentioned that, "Tiger Woods said not to worry, that he and Tilghman are long time friends."
Smith asked Sharpton, "You think this is a big deal?" to which Sharpton responded:
I think that it is. Either you're going to have standards or you're not. I think if you give Tilghman a pass, then who then stops the next person from saying something insensitive and saying Tilghman is an example of how come I can say this. And I think the problem with Tilghman's statement, regardless to the reaction of Tiger Woods, is it was very offensive, if I had said about a Jewish person, let's throw them in a gas chamber, I don't think there would have been a question I'd have been off the radio and I have a radio show. So I think you've got to either have standards or you don't have standards.
A new "Veggie Tales" movie is hitting the silver screen and, as may well be expected, the New York Times doesn't like it much.
That's not so surprising coming from the hallowed pages of the broadsheet bible of the secular left. But as Jeffrey Weiss of the Dallas Morning News's Religion Blog notes, it appears the hostile NYT reviewer is wholly unfamiliar with the Veggie Tales franchise and so may hardly have been the best reviewer for the assignment in the first place:
The New York Times has a bad review today of the new VeggieTales film, "The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything." It's a bad review, in the sense that it slams the movie. But it's also a badly written review in that it seems to be written by someone who has never heard of or seen any of the VeggieTales previous cartoons or movies. Here's the top of the review, by Neil Genzlinger:
We talk of liberalism in the news media every day here on NewsBusters, of course. But the leftist lack of standards and morals that we decry in the news media is reflected in much of our entertainment and art, as well. We've discussed leftism in music and in the movies many times, but here is another story where the degradation of western culture is plainly visible. Now we can add a new outrage to the world of "art" with the exhibit of Spent by "performance, installation" artist Jordan McKenzie that features the artist's ejaculation patterns on paper, sprinkled with colored powder to make the stream visible, then framing bunches of them on a wall.
Please excuse the language here, but here is the Sun’s report…
AN ARTIST has created a new exhibition of drawings by masturbating over paper.
At the top of Monday’s CBS "Early Show," newly appointed co-host, Maggie Rodriguez, teased an upcoming segment on race in politics in the aftermath of Barack Obama’s Iowa victory: "But besides the knock-down, drag-out political fighting in New Hampshire, we're asking the question this morning on everyone's mind, is America finally color-blind?" This just days after the "Early Show" declared that Obama’s success in Iowa meant that "history has been made."
Later in the 8am hour of the show, co-host Harry Smith led the segment with guests Joe Watson, a diversity expert, and Jon Meacham of "Newsweek." Smith began by asking a similar question as Rodriguez:
When Senator Barack Obama won the Iowa caucuses, he became the first presidential candidate of color to achieve a significant victory in the race for the White House. Is America turning color-blind? Ready to elect its first African-American president?
Smith asked for Watson’s reaction to Obama’s success and Watson declared, "I think it's a magnificent moment for America." Smith then turned to Meacham and gave this thoughtful insight on race and politics:
Jon Meacham, I was on the bus with Barack Obama a week or two ago in Iowa. We're driving along in the bus and the snow outside is as white as that state is, as white as New Hampshire is, what is -- what is going on here? Are people seeing past color? Is that possible?
Planned Parenthood Golden Gate (PPGG) has unveiled what it calls an “edgy” TV and radio campaign that “focuses on the importance of practicing pregnancy prevention and safer sex.”
Except that the words “pregnancy” and “safe sex” are never spoken. And the pitch man in the “Mile High campaign” is flamingly gay. The TV ad is being run on MTV, VH-1, Comedy Central and TLC, and the radio ad is running on KMEL-FM, a San Francisco station. See if you can find the purported "sexual health" education messages in the ad.
Here is the text of the commercial: (click here to see the video)
Of all the ways Harry Smith could have opened this morning's historic Early Show, he chose to do so by waving today's Boston Herald with its one-word front page "Shazam!" above a photo of Mike Huckabee. Smith described Barack Obama simply as the "big winner" on the Democratic side.
View video here [with apologies for low audio level].
The nation’s news media were hardly phased by MTV’s bisexual Tila Tequila dating series. Now London’s Daily Mail reports that America’s celebrity "reality" show sweepstakes may include a new out-and-proud gay series – starring Cher and her lesbian daughter, Chastity Bono. The show, currently pitched as "Coming Out with Cher and Chas," would feature the former TV stars helping gays "come out" to their parents on television.
It does not have the ring of a sure-fire ratings hit, but the couple have said the series could be as big as The Osbournes (which might explain Cher's apparent metamorphosis into the Black Sabbath frontman).
Last night a U.S. source said: "Cher and Chas believe they are on to a winner and have been setting up meetings with the major networks."
Celebrity endorsements, helpful or harmful? The LA Times explores that question with Oprah Winfrey and her endorsement of Democrat Barack Obama as a test case:
Although it's true that rallies featuring Winfrey in Iowa and South Carolina have drawn some of the biggest crowds of the campaign so far, Obama's people won't know whether they also triggered a backlash until election day.
Winfrey's website has been buzzing for weeks with angry postings about her involvement in the Illinois senator's campaign, something Hollywood, which always keeps its eye on the public mood, is bound to notice -- this is a town, after all, that measures success by weekly grosses and daily TV ratings.
One posting on her site, Oprah.com, accused the talk diva of being a traitor. (By Thursday, that message string had attracted more than 12,000 views.) Another poster told Winfrey to "stop pushing Obama down our throats." (There were 3,000 hits logged on that one.) Another said: "Do you really know Barack Hussein Obama? Scary & something we have to take into consideration!" (There were more than 4,000 views for that.)
Rosie O'Donnell may have been one of Time's 100 Most Influential People, but now she is 2007's Most Annoying Celebrity. The woman who surprised blacksmiths everywhere when she claimed that fire can't melt steel trounced her competition in the Parade.com poll, getting 44% of the vote, nearly double the amount of second place winner Paris Hilton. Ann Coulter was third.
The woman who admitted that she's so gullible, she's “five seconds away” from joining a cult, also outed herself as a 9/11 Truther and floated several conspiracies. She doesn't think Al Qaeda is a threat--hey, they're mommies and daddies, too!
But she knows who the real bad guys are. She called the US a state sponsor of terror and equated the military with terrorists. She claimed the captured British sailors were really part of a “false flag” operation (“Google it!”), and Ahmadinejad isn't all that bad. Don't worry, she is concerned about terrorists. She thinks the US is robbing 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheik Mohammed of his humanity by labeling him a “terrorist.” (Her sneer quotes, not mine.)
Here are some of the quotes that helped Rosie win her new title (bold mine):
Don't fear the terrorists. They’re mothers and fathers-11-09-07
The use of child pornography to sell newspapers was defended this week when New York Times Magazine Editor Gerald Marzorati sent an email defending a photo used in the fashion insert "T", which shows a 17 year old model, topless, with her left breast partially showing.
Now in case you're not versed in New York Times values or the proper use of kiddie porn, this is why it's okay; it's kind of blurry, it was shot by a "legendary fashion photographer", she's got a $4000 coat around her waist, and the section makes about $5 million in advertising revenue which was responsible from moving NYT stock rating to a "buy".
How quiet is it Chez Finkelstein on Christmas morning? Quiet enough that I actually resorted to my HBO on Demand re-run channel and decided to check out a two-minute Def Comedy short. I wasn't looking for trouble, let alone grist for the NB mill. But here's what turned up. A comedian named Patrice O'Neal. And these were the very first words out of his mouth:
Politico is having some snarky fun, running a "populist pop quiz" challenging readers to guess whether it was John Edwards or Mike Huckabee who made the variety of class-warfare claims listed. You'll find a sampling of four of the questions below, but I'd encourage people to take the entire eight-question quiz and report back your scores. A cyber-statue of Karl Marx to the winner!
1. “No young person is more equal than another person because he has a higher IQ, or a higher net worth, or because he lives in a nicer home, or his clothes have a label of a designer that the other guy doesn’t have. That’s not what gives us equality.”
2. “There is unfortunately some disconnect between people who have never struggled and those for whom everyday life is a struggle.”
You remember Ponytail Guy, who during a 1992 presidential townhall pathetically implored the candidates to "treat us as your children." I don't know what's become of Ponytail Guy, but his Big Mommy Government-loving spirit was celebrated on CNN this evening.
At 5:40 PM ET on the Situation Room, anchor Suzanne Malveaux asked congressional correspondent Jessica Yellin what she was seeing out on the Dem campaign trail in Iowa that the TV cameras might be missing.
On this holy Sunday, just before the celebration of the birth of the Christian Savior, The Seattle Times decided it needed something Christmas related for its Entertainment & Arts section. Not just something that reflects the values of 92% of the country, like a church service, a Christmas play, or a church choir. No, this has to be something that represents The Seattle Times values. Seattle Times arts writer Michael Upchurch certainly found it.
The Seattle Times decided the front page should include the "tawdry glamour" and "warped yuletide spirit" of "drag legend Dina Martina - a big boned chanteuse of stage and dive". So bundle up the kids in their Sunday best and brave the cold night so that your family may celebrate the birth of the Lord at "The All-New Dina Martina Christmas Show".
In 2005, I sensed that journalists in general prefer to call this time of the year in commerce that of "holiday shopping" instead of "Christmas shopping," but that when it came to people losing their jobs, they preferred to describe layoffs as relating to "Christmas."
My instincts were proven correct that year and in 2006, so I chose to track the same items this year to look for any noticeable change or trend.
As in previous years, it was pretty easy to predict the results. But the extent of the disparity might surprise you.
Here are results from the three sets of Google News searches I did during during this year's Christmas season, compared to the previous two years (the Dec. 22, 2007 searches were done at about 2 p.m.; previous 2007 posts are here and here; links to 2005's related posts are here, here, and here; 2006's are here, here, and here):
The gay "rights" movement's war on orthodox religion and against religious people's freedom of speech is continuing in our neighbor to the north, as LifeSite reports. A Catholic magazine in Toronto is under the gun:
Closely following an uproar in the media against government-sponsored censorship via HRC against Maclean's magazine and columnist Mark Steyn and an Alberta HRC judgment ordering Alberta news media to not publish any comments on homosexuality by a Christian pastor, Toronto's Catholic Insight magazine has reported they stand accused in an HRC complaint of "targeting homosexuals".
The current column at the NY Times Opinionator blog, Huckabee and the Democratic Ideal, wonders "where’s the Democratic Mike Huckabee?" It answers its own question by approvingly citing David Seaton, an American expatriate blogger living in Madrid, who writes thusly [emphasis added]:
Democrats could learn a lot by studying Huckabee. I have no idea what is really behind Mike Huckabee’s friendly facade, but he is making some interesting and nuanced noises for a southern populist and I think Democrats should take note of these nuances and make some of the same noises.