In her "Big City" column Sunday, "Principal Is Trampled In a Rush to Vilify," New York Times reporter Ginia Bellafante (pictured) rushed to the defense of school principal Greta Hawkins, the subject of conservative criticism for cutting the patriotic song "God Bless the U.S.A." from her Coney Island kindergarten's graduation ceremony after months of childrens' rehearsals, saying it would "offend other cultures." The New York Post reported on June 9:
It was to be the rousing finale of their musical show at the June 20 commencement. The kids, dressed up for their big day, would wave tiny American flags -- which, as the lyrics proclaim, “still stand for freedom.” But Hawkins marched in on a recent rehearsal and ordered a CD playing the anthem to be shut off, staffers said. She told the teachers to drop the song from the program. “We don’t want to offend other cultures,” they quoted her as explaining.
Bellafante was only concerned about the principal who nixed the patriotic song, suggesting all criticism was invalid and personal:
A regular media meme, especially since Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney's comments regarding public sector employees last week, has been that there just aren't enough school teachers in America.
Such statements ignore that according to the Census Bureau, since 1960, the average class size in our public schools has declined by 40 percent as the number of teachers rose almost four times faster than the student population.
During the special 11:00 p.m. edition of The Ed Show on Tuesday, MSNBC host Ed Schultz fretted about what he viewed as "pretty damn scary stuff" that he believed Republicans would do in following Governor Scott Walkers example in pushing a conservative agenda in Wisconsin.
A bit later, during an interview with the Reverend Jesse Jackson, he asserted that conservatives are trying to "destroy and defund public education," which he claimed was "hurting the minority communities."
The Washington Post's Valerie Strauss -- who sends her daughters to private schools -- lashed out recently in her The Answer Sheet blog against Mitt Romney's ideas for education reform, in which school vouchers are a central piece.
Romney's ideas are predicated on "an ideology that demonizes unions." Strauss complained in her May 24 post -- which was also printed in the May 28 Washington Post on page B2 -- concluding that "if Romney gets a chance to run education policy according to his new plan, [you can] expect things to get worse."
At the Associated Press, aka the Administration's Press, Jesse Washington's Friday evening coverage ("Who's an American Indian? Warren case stirs query") of the nuances involved in claiming Native American Indian heritage -- or ancestry, or biology, or allegiance, or identity, or identification, or membership (and I've probably missed a couple) -- occasioned by Democratic Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren in Massachusetts is the journalistic equivalent of what the occasional Atlantic Coast Conference men's basketball game was like (with final scores sometimes in the 20s) before the NCAA legislated the shot clock: a continuous exercise in stalling.
Washington's report is time-stamped at 10:31 P.M., meaning that its last rendition was at least 18 hours after the Boston Globe performed a rare exercise in journalism and found the following, of which there is no hint in the AP story:
Some passages in Barack Obama's commencement address Monday at Barnard College on Broadway didn't make the media quote machine -- especially the ones whacking the media, and the comparative stupidity of men. Now that's a way to build a gender gap. The "founding mothers" were smarter than the Founding Fathers, he quipped.
CNSNews.com reported the media slam -- which is an odd way to treat your most devoted supporters:
Thursday's CBS Evening News and Friday's CBS This Morning spotlighted the Washington Post's reporting on the accusation that Mitt Romney supposedly bullied a high school classmate almost 50 years ago. Evening News anchor Scott Pelley trumpeted how "what [Romney] said about it today made it relevant again." Political director John Dickerson touted how "the reporting of the story seems pretty solid."
Correspondent Jan Crawford reported on the Romney issue on the evening and morning newscasts. During the Thursday report, Crawford highlighted how one former classmate of Romney's labeled the alleged incident an "assault and battery." The following morning, she did contrast the allegation with President Obama's admitted drug use during his high school years and President Clinton claiming he tried marijuana, but "didn't inhale."
On Tuesday's All Things Considered, NPR's Claudio Sanchez spotlighted the efforts of college students who, with the assistance of the "liberal Center for American Progress," are lobbying Congress for an extension of low interest rates on their Stafford loans. While Sanchez did find a critic of the politicization of the loan issue, he came from another left-leaning organization, the Brookings Insitution.
All of the correspondent's soundbites came from the CAP-backed students and from Mathew Chingo of Brookings, with none coming from conservatives/Republicans. Sanchez noted how the students visited Senator Rob Portman and identified him as "a Republican from Ohio," but omitted that he is considered a possible running mate on the 2012 Republican presidential ticket. He also played up how one student was "upset about something one of the senator's staff members said," but failed to get the other side of the story.
Perhaps it’s unrealistic to expect history textbooks to present and analyze events and epochs with complete objectivity. But it’s entirely reasonable to demand that they don’t actively reinforce the news media’s liberal bias when it comes to recent history and individuals who are still alive and active in shaping that history.
Yet commonly used American history textbooks have eschewed historical analysis when discussing recent Supreme Court justices, and in its place substituted partisan political commentary.
CNN even noted it was an "election year" before giving Obama's Education Secretary a chance to share his "proudest" accomplishment from his time in office, no doubt bolstering the administration's re-election message.
Host Brooke Baldwin declined to ask any tough questions of Secretary of Education Arne Duncan during a lame Tuesday afternoon interview. Baldwin topped it all off with a soft parting question "on a more personal note." [Video below the break. Audio here.]
On March 1, 2011, 14 year-old Makayla Norman of Dayton died of neglect at the hands of adults (her mother and three others) who were responsible for her care and safety. Makayla weighed 28 pounds when she died, and was found "covered in bedsores, living in filth and starved to the point the she looked more like a skeleton than a teenager." On Friday, her mother pled guilty to involuntary manslaughter and endangering children. The cases of the three other adults go to trial on April 16.
In January, an investigative report by Cox Newspapers Dayton-area staff writers Josh Sweigart and Doug Page identified several parties who could and should have prevented the neglect in the first place, or detected it while in progress: "the home care agency responsible for feeding her"; "an extensive bureaucracy where officials say fraud is a massive and growing problem"; her case manager (among those indicted), who "worked for CareStar of Ohio"; and the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services. Bizarrely, two months later, while barely mentioning any of the aforementioned parties in their report, Mary McCarty and Margo Kissell at the Dayton Daily News, using questionable methods and verbiage (to be noted later), decided that one other element in Makayla's life should be nominated to receive part of the blame -- homeschooling:
For the umpteenth time, news unfavorable or embarrassing to the left comes from the UK instead of the USA.
In this instance, it was an unbylined item in Saturday's Daily Mail. For years, Oregon University Sociology and environmental studies professor Kari Norgaard has been spewing forth bigoted characterizations of anyone who dares not surrender to the gospel of global warming. But her bizarre outlook didn't get meaningful notice from the press all these years until she presented her, uh, work at the annual four-day ‘Planet Under Pressure’ international conference in London. Here is some of what the Daily Mail found, and which Rush Limbaugh for all practical purposes broke in the U.S. media. I hear echoes of the former Soviet Union's serial abuse of psychiatry just around the bend (bolds are mine throughout this post):
Commonly used history textbooks in American classrooms often misrepresent major historical events, and present material based in liberal political ideology rather than factual happenings.
The Culture and Media Institute has obtained six textbooks commonly used in American classrooms. Three of these textbooks are used to teach 8th graders: Glencoe’s “The American Journey,” Prentice Hall’s “The American Nation,” and Holt, Rinehart, and Winston’s “Call to Freedom: Beginnings to 1877.” The other three textbooks are used to teach 11th graders: Holt, Rinehart, and Winston’s “American Anthem,” Prentice Hall’s “America: Pathways to the Present,” and Prentice Hall’s “A History of the United States.”
He may have phrased it inartfully but Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum is on to something when he talks about how college isn't the panacea that the media is always touting it as. While college can be useful for getting a job in fields which require professional certification, in many cases, students are being sold a bill of goods by universities who care more about making money than helping people get a decent-paying job. That's particularly true for certain majors and graduate degree programs.
In 2008-09, America's college and universities graduated 78,009 people with journalism degrees. For those graduates who could find a job in that field, they could expect a median starting salary of $35,800.
But most won't find a job in journalism -- the number of journalism jobs is projected to shrink by more than 6 percent from 2008 to 2018, a decline of 4,400 available job positions. That data lead The Daily Beast to put journalism at the top the list of the 20 Most Useless College Degrees (a list based on crunching numbers from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the National Center for Education Statistics and Payscale).
Imagine you're a public high school principal and you've learned of a student walkout that's been in the works for months. This is an unacceptable disruption to the learning environment of which you are hired by the county and paid by the taxpayers to preserve. Also imagine the ringleaders of the walkout organized the protest via Twitter, and so you are able to find the organizers and give them a 5-day suspension. But that's when it hits the fan because the Occupy movement and other left-wing agitators start to make a stink about it online, ensuring, of course, local media coverage that's bound to paint you in a negative light.
That's exactly the pickle Edgar Batenga is in. The principal of Hyattsville, Maryland's Northwestern High School was painted by Washington Post writer Ovetta Wiggins today as a free speech-stifling, overly strict disciplinarian. Naturally, Wiggins began her 28-paragraph story by painting the chief student organizer as a victim (emphasis mine):
This probably won't surprise anyone, but it should be noted for the record: As of 3:45 p.m. today, almost 72 hours after the related story broke, the Associated Press has not reported on new revelations about the clear influence radical, racist professor Derrick Bell had on now-President Barack Obama 20 years ago -- so influential that Obama "routinely assigned works by Bell as required reading" in his University of Chicago law classes. The AP has also not told its subscribing outlets and news consumers about how many of its colleagues in the press withheld information on the relationship between the two during the 2008 presidential election campaign. A search on Bell's name (not in quotes) at the AP's main site returns nothing relevant, even though it has been shown that Obama told a Harvard audience that people should "[O]pen your hearts and open your minds to the words of Prof. Derrick Bell."
However, there has been no shortage of coverage at the AP and elsewhere of what Mitt Romney did with his dog 29 years ago. But of course, the dog story is far more relevant to Mitt Romney's governing philosophy than Obama's love of a professor whose core life contention revolves around insurmountable white racism (/sarc). The AP's cover-up treatment of Bell has been consistent, as seen in the first three paragraphs of its brief write-up after the professor's death in October 2011 (bold is mine):
New York Times reporter Richard Perez-Pena wrote Tuesday about the low-brow fight that's broken out online between high-brow Columbia University and the women's college it's affiliated with, Barnard, over President Obama's politically motivated decision to speak at Barnard's commencement in May. Another wrinkle: Times Executive Editor Jill Abramson was the original graduation speaker at the women's school, but was bumped when Obama big-footed the invitation.
Don't expect MSNBC or other liberal media outlets to showcase Georgetown University senior Angela Morabito anytime soon. The conservative student may attend the same school as feminist activist and law student Sandra Fluke, but, as Morabito makes clear in a March 2 post at The College Conservative, they're worlds apart in their worldview.
It's "[f]unny how the same side that cries 'Get your rosaries off my ovaries' is the same side saying, 'on second thought…please pay for me to have all the sex I want!' The people who espouse 'pro-choice' 'values' are the same people who say religious institutions have no right to choose," observed Morabito, who concluded her post by challenging fellow Georgetowner to live up to the school's motto by respecting herself as more than the sum of her genitals (emphases mine):
Ten days ago I noted how the Washington Post had its editorial knives out against the so-called Tebow bill, a piece of legislation in the Virginia General Assembly that would require public high schools in the Old Dominion to allow homeschoolers to try out for varsity sports teams. I noted that in three separate occasions, the Post editorialized against the bill. There were, however, no op-eds written by a supporter of the bill.
Fast forward to today, as the Post's Anita Kumar is reporting a Virginia Senate panel has killed the bill. I ran a quick check of the Nexis database and found no change since February 20 on reporting on the "Tebow bill." That is to say, in the three weeks that this issue has been presented to Post readers, the paper at no time offered readers with an op-ed in defense of the legislation. Sure, a handful of pro-Tebow bill letters-to-the-editor were published, but no full-length opinion piece by a sponsor of the bill or a homeschooler was published for the benefit of Post readers.
If you were to believe MSNBC's Alex Wagner -- which, I'm sure you don't -- GOP presidential candidate Rick Santorum is anti-college, believing the acquisition of higher education to be a mark of snobbery.
"Is it hypocritical, given Rick Santorum and the fact that he holds not one, not two, but three degrees -- more than the president, -- for him to allege that having a higher education is a form of snobbery?" Wagner pressed Santorum campaign spokeswoman Alice Stewart on today's edition of Now with Alex Wagner. I don't know what they teach at Brown University, where Wagner went to college, but one hopes it has nothing to do with Wagner's deliberate mischaracterization of Santorum's recent swipe at President Obama.
On Monday, the editorial board at the Los Angeles Times was so mad that they fell victim to a corollary of Godwin's Law (he who mentions Hitler or the Nazis has automatically lost the argument) by the third paragraph.
What has them so upset? The very idea that K-12 classroom instruction might not teach human-caused global warming and the need for massive and radical government intervention in the marketplace to deal with it as established, irrefutable facts. In their fever-swamp view, the battle is between "credentialed climatologists around the globe" and "fossil-fuel-industry-funded 'experts.'" The editorial's language is so over at the top it makes one legitimately wonder how anyone who doesn't toe the line on climate change can remain employed anywhere at the Times. Here are the last four of the editorial's five paragraphs; I tried to select particular items to bold, but the whole thing is such an offensive, fabricated assemblage that I would have had to bold the whole thing (HT to Gary Hall):
On Sunday's Face the Nation, CBS's Bob Schieffer interrogated Rick Santorum over his offensive against President Obama, particularly over the Republican candidate's "theology" attack on the President's environmental policies. Schieffer seemed to channel a certain former MSNBC anchor when he asked, "I've got to ask you, what in the world were you talking about, sir?" [audio clips available here; video below the jump]
The anchor led his program with an outline of his criticism of Santorum, focusing on three recent comments from the GOP presidential candidate: "Did you hear what Rick Santorum said?...In one twenty-four-hour-period, he questioned the President's religious beliefs....said prenatal testing is really just the President's way to reduce costs in taking care of the disabled....and questioned the value of public schools....We'll ask him about all of it this morning..."
Sheesh! What have taxpaying homeschooling parents ever done to the Washington Post?
There's a bill working its way through the Virginia General Assembly that would, if passed, require that public high schools in the Old Dominion allow homeschooled children to try out for athletic teams for the school which they would attend were they enrolled in the public school system. Post staffer Anita Kumar reported on the issue in the February 6 paper. In the two weeks since then, Washington Post staffers and editors published three separate opinion pieces against the HB947, nicknamed the "Tebow Bill."
During his first hour today, Rush mentioned the reaction of Peter King at Sports illustrated in King's "Monday Morning Quarterback" collection to a paragraph in the magazine's cover story on Jeremy Lin, the New York Knicks' point guard who has broken through from obscurity to phenom during the past two weeks. What King wrote is indeed an interesting giveaway of what I believe is a common but unsupportable media perspective, namely that students at and graduates of elite upper-echelon universities like those in the Ivy League are presumptively free of overt racism, because, well, they're all so enlightened.
George Washington just got a promotion. Yes, he's still one of the slave-owning oligarchs who, according to liberals, stuck us with a short-sighted Constitution, and whose colleagues were probably having sex with slaves.
But with the 2012 election on the line and conservatives citing the Founders' legacy as a touch-stone of limited government, Time Magazine has found it useful to turn the first president into a proto-liberal.
Larry Sand's article "No Wonder Johnny (Still) Can't Read" — written for The John William Pope Center for Higher Education Policy, based in Raleigh, N.C. — blames schools of education for the decline in America's education. Education professors drum into students that they should not "drill and kill" or be the "sage on the stage" but instead be the "guide on the side" who "facilitates student discovery." This kind of harebrained thinking, coupled with multicultural nonsense, explains today's education. During his teacher education, Sand says, "teachers-to-be were forced to learn about this ethnic group, that impoverished group, this sexually anomalous group, that under-represented group, etc. — all under the rubric of 'Culturally Responsive Education.'"
Howard Dean: "I need to take you on a tour of America's public schools; that's what I need to do." Joe Scarborough: "I've been fighting for education reform for a generation, and every time we've tried to reform schools . . . it was the Democratic party on the House floor and on the Senate floor and in the White House that stood in the way. I do not need lectures from you on education reform."
And that was the polite part of the exchange! But seriously, Joe Scarborough and Howard Dean had a big-time brawl on today's Morning Joe on the subject of education reform. Dean defended teachers unions and their Dem lackeys, while Scarborough, who has made education reform a theme of his show, denounced the Dem-union cabal that has thwarted real reform every step of the way. Video after the jump.
American Public Media (formerly American Public Radio) says that its "Marketplace" program "focuses on the latest business news both nationally and internationally, the global economy, and wider events linked to the financial markets."
Okay. One would expect, given the track record of leftist and communist movements and causes in ruining economies and creating unspeakable human misery, that if "Marketplace" were to do a segment on, say, Saul Alinsky, that it might note his antagonism towards free-market capitalism, and how damaging his "Rules for Radicals" recommendations have been in practice. Instead, those listening to yesterday's Alinsky segment got nothing but pap and misdirection orchestrated by a far-left labor prof:
New York Times reporter Jan Hoffman celebrated explicit online sex education programs, including one run by abortion provider Planned Parenthood, in Saturday’s edition: “Sex Education Gets Directly to Youths, Via Text.” Hoffman found a video made by teens showing a girl being pelted with condoms to be "funny and blunt," and profiled a "vital" Chicago school program called Sex-Ed Loop that focused on "where to find low-cost lubricants."