During a report for the April 18 edition of NBC's Rock Center, correspondent Ted Koppel was right at home with French socialist campaign workers: "...it is the Socialist campaign directed by these three young men, Vincent, Arthur and Guillaume, that has the distinctly American flavor." Guillaume declared: "We've been pushing this, you know, let's do what Obama did for two years."
At the same time, only seconds earlier, Koppel touted attacks against current French President Nicolas Sarkozy for being too American: "This US-style rally is one reason that President Sarkozy's rivals call him La American, 'the American.' It is not meant as a compliment."
New York Times Paris bureau chief Steven Erlanger sees French president Nicolas Sarkozy on the ropes in his re-election bid in his Friday front-page dispatch, and strangely foresees possible consequences for the United States in the form of higher taxes: "With Vote Days Away, Outlook for Sarkozy Dims."
Toulouse is by no means without racism, anti-Semitism, crime or the deep social segregation that marks many French cities, but with a culture shaped by successive waves of immigration, it is described by its inhabitants as a place of particular tolerance.
The New York Times's Scott Sayare reported on Saturday from Toulouse, France, the sight of the killing of Jewish schoolchildren by a radical Islamist, "After Unity Over a Rampage in France, Politics Drives in Wedges," and accused the French paper Le Figaro as being "increasingly viewed as a mouthpiece" for tough-on-crime French President Nicolas Sarkozy.
That's quite ironic, considering Sayare himself functioned as a mouthpiece for Obama in a September 23, 2010 story, calling the president "a powerful symbol of hope" among poor Muslims in the Paris slums. And the paper has long been irredeemably hostile to President Nicolas Sarkozy, whom the Times can never forgive for being friendly with President George W. Bush.
CBS's Allen Pizzey completely whitewashed the struggling European economy on CBS Sunday Morning to bash the Republican presidential candidates' attack on President Obama's economic policies. Pizzey zeroed-in on Germany's lower unemployment rate and cited left-leaning Professor James Walston, who claimed that "the candidates are dealing in caricatures of Europe that are about 90% wrong."
The journalist played clips from Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney, who defended the U.S. Constitution and ripped "European socialism." He condescended in reply, "If you're a candidate who wants to move to the White House, why worry about details?" Pizzey also turned to a European woman who insulted the Republican candidates' intelligence: "I just hope that most Americans are just more intelligent than those politicians" [audio clips available here; video below the jump].
What did French president Nicolas Sarkozy ever do to the New York Times to incur such outsized wrath?
In a line of attack reminiscent of the Times's sordid attempt to link the shooting of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords to the conservative movement, Paris bureau chief Steven Erlanger on Wednesday used the killings at a Jewish school in France ("Killings Could Stall Elections' Nationalist Turn") to suggest Sarkozy's tough-on-immigration re-election campaign rhetoric could be contributing to a violent anti-immigrant mood in France. (The gunman, whose identity was unknown at the time of filing, is apparently an Islamic extremist who trained with Al Qaeda.)
The New York Times showed desperate liberal Euro-philia -- an embrace of collective economic action at the expense of national sovereignty -- on the front of Tuesday’s Business section, as reporter Landon Thomas Jr., writing from London, pondered a frightening (and extremely hypothetical) martial-law scenario in Greece if the euro currency were to be abandoned by that country, a member of the European Union: “Pondering a Dire Day: Leaving the Euro.” (Greece joined the EU's single currency in 2001.)
The Washington Post on Saturday offered a chiding, negative response to British Prime Minister David Cameron’s decision to veto a new European Union treaty that would have more closely bound the country and meant the possibility of new taxes.
Staff writer Anthony Faiola scolded on the front page, “At the same time, Cameron made life harder for a region desperately trying to unite behind a plan to subdue a debt crisis that is threatening the global economy.” The 26 paragraph story featured only the Conservative Cameron to defend the decision, but touted several outraged and disappointed liberals.
Zbigniew Brzezinki's indictment of the United States was so harsh—calling America "one of the most socially unjust societies in the world"—that even his own daughter Mika was taken aback, asking her father to explain himself.
But that didn't stop Andrea Mitchell from emphatically agreeing with Zbigniew Brzezinki's condemnation of the USA. In the course of doing so, Mitchell called the Tea Party and opposition to ObamaCare "exaggerated forms" of protest, while praising Occupy Wall Street as "a real movement." Video after the jump.
If you don't hear much about the Iranian mob which stormed the British embassy earlier today in future news reports, you can probably at least partially blame the Associated Press, which considers the event so unimportant that it's not even part of its main U.S. site's top ten world stories as of 10:25 p.m. (saved here at host for future reference, fair use and discussion purposes).
For those who are curious as to the identification of the ten stories considered more important, here they are:
New York Times Berlin bureau chief Nicholas Kulish was harsh on his hosts in his “Memo From Germany” on Wednesday, “Success and Advice Cast a Giant as a Villain, Not a Model, in Europe.” Germany’s leadership has had the gall to fix work-force rules and institute pension reforms and are insisting that bailout help for free-spending, sclerotic Greece must be contingent on similar requirements, or as Kulish calls it, “austerity and suffering.”
Say, Al Sharpton: if Herman Cain lacks "intelligence" for colloquially referring to "Cuban" as a language, how about Barack Obama . . . who did precisely the same thing when it came to "Austrian"?
On his MSNBC show tonight, Sharpton mocked Cain for asking in an aside while munching on a Cuban delicacy during a campaign stop: "how do you say 'delicious' in Cuban?" Does Sharpton not know that Barack Obama, in a much more formal setting, addressing a NATO audience, said something virtually identical, wondering how a certain phrase was said "in Austrian"? Video after the jump.
New York Times correspondent Alan Cowell issued a moralistic “Memo from London” on Monday on the humble joys of post-World War II austerity compared to today, where the "have-nots" are tempted by things they cannot have: “As the riots in London and elsewhere in August seemed to show, the profound gulf between haves and have-nots has been magnified by the inequalities and envies of a society that has built its newest altars to consumption and greed.”
Are we supposed to believe standards of professional journalism are so different in France that when you hear something clearly newsworthy, you don't say or write about it when the government tells you not to because of "tradition"?
That's what Angela Charlton at the Associated Press, which admits to having had a reporter on hand when French President Nicolas Sarkozy told U.S. President Barack Obama that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu "is a liar," would have us believe. Though she did note Obama's lack of objection to Sarkozy's assertion, Charlton downplayed Obama's actual and equally broad response -- "You’re fed up with him, but I have to deal with him every day!" -- by holding it until the eighth paragraph of her report and keeping it out of the story's headline. The first six paragraphs of the report (9:45 a.m. version also saved here for future reference, fair use and discussion purposes), which includes the excuse, follow the jump (bolds are mine):
At the tail end of the second hour of the Diane Rehm Show on many NPR stations Friday, defense reporter James Kitfield of the National Journal broke out his outrage about the French magazine Charlie Hebdo, which was firebombed this week. Like Time's Bruce Crumley, Kitfield saved his outrage for the "irresponsible" satirists and all his sensitivity for the Muslims of France.
In the Huffington Post, French journalist Romina Ruiz-Goiriena complained that while "For many, the publication has been an iconic soapbox for the far French left since its creation in 1960," it failed to achieve what freedom should: "The issue was not thought-provoking; it simply contributed to burgeoning anti-Muslim sentiment. What it should have been doing was pushing the conversation forward to confront the seemingly dormant but rampant institutional bigotry. After all, is that not the point of having a free press tradition in the first place?"
NPR's Philip Reeves slanted towards the Occupy Wall Street on Wednesday's All Things Considered as he played up the "huge outcry" over St. Paul Cathedral in London's dispute with the left-leaning movement, which has an encampment outside its doors. Reeves spotlighted a local official who "called St. Paul's a 'national laughing stock,'" and omitted sound bites from the opponents of the movement.
Host Guy Raz noted in his introduction to the correspondent's report how St. Paul's was a "national treasure" associated with Churchill's funeral and the wedding of Charles and Diana, and continued that it was now "the backdrop for another kind of drama: a protest camp modeled on the Occupy Wall Street movement. NPR's Philip Reeves says it's causing upheaval in the heart of British society."
Islamists firebombed a satirical newspaper in France named Charlie Hebdo. Time magazine, on its “Global Spin” blog, uncorked outrage – against the newspaper. Time’s Paris bureau chief Bruce Crumley blamed the “insolent” newspaper for the bombing. The headline was “Firebombed French Paper Is No Free Speech Martyr.” Ace of Spades says the URL suggests the original title may have been even worse: "Firebombed French Paper: A Victim of Islam, Or Its Own Obnoxious Islamaphobia?"
Don’t try telling Crumley that an omnidirectional print equivalent of South Park defines free speech: “As such, Charlie Hebdo has cultivated its insolence proudly as a kind of public duty—pushing the limits of freedom of speech, come what may. But that seems more self-indulgent and willfully injurious when it amounts to defending the right to scream ‘fire’ in an increasingly over-heated theater.”
While "Occupy Wall Street" is spreading to "more than a thousand countries," a key liberal supporter of the movement has been enjoying the past few days in the birthplace of the radical French Revolution, where she's expanding... her media empire.
Arianna Huffington is in Paris today announcing Le Huffington Post, a French-language version of The Huffington Post set to launch later this year in partnership with Le Monde:
Hundreds of thousands of disillusioned Indians cheer a rural activist on a hunger strike. Israel reels before the largest street demonstrations in its history. Enraged young people in Spain and Greece take over public squares across their countries.
Three years after the collapse of Lehman Brothers, what was the fourth-largest investment bank in the US, the Federal Reserve, European Central Bank, Bank of England, and Japanese and Swiss central banks moved last week to avert a liquidity crisis in European banks struggling to deal with the failing Greek economy, leaving American investors with portfolios of Greek bonds worried. Do you think a Greek default is inevitable? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.
Fareed Zakaria's desire to give power to all countries except the one he currently resides - the United States! - is nothing less than appalling.
On the CNN program bearing his name Sunday, Zakaria actually said, "It might be necessary to make clear that Christine Lagarde would be the last non-Chinese head of the [International Monetary Fund]" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
The headline to a New York Times editorial Saturday sounds like a conservative parody of liberal sanctimony: “The Enlightened Want to Be Taxed.” The content is no better, another boost of the paper's favorite multi-billionaire Warren “tax me more” Buffett, whose crusade was launched on the Times opinion page August 15, while offensively crediting the left-wing threat of property destruction as a reasonable response to “cuts to social welfare programs” in Europe.
Some of the world’s wealthiest people are calling for higher taxes on the rich. They seem to recognize that the burden of the economic downturn cannot be borne entirely by the poor and middle class.
CNN's Fareed Zakaria got more than he bargained for in his Sunday interview with guest Donald Rumsfeld.
As he pushed the former Secretary of Defense on America's need to cut military spending, the "GPS" host blushed when Rumsfeld smartly said, "There are people who think we're living in the post-American world, to coin a phrase. There are people who believe that we should step back and lead from behind" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
On Tuesday, NPR ombudsman Edward Schumacher-Matos reached back to a July 26 story on the horrific shootings in Norway. Correspondent Sylvia Poggioli suggested the shooter, Anders Breivik “once belonged to the ultra-right Progress Party.” Schumacher-Matos lamented the “ultra-right” label, and asked Poggioli to explain herself. He called it "ultra-wrong."
It quickly became clear that Poggioli saw "ultra" extremism in the party's opposition to Islam and immigration. The ombudsman posting including just a few paragraphs of what Poggioli wrote in her own defense. But at the bottom of the page, he posted the whole reply, and her affinity for left-wing rags like the Nation and "far right" labels became really obvious:
Erlanger implied that Sarkozy’s standard political appeals for deficits and balanced budgets (i.e. “the right’s obsession”) were somehow unfair to the opposition Socialist Party. Taking sides, Erlanger lamented the Socialists may be right on the merits but that Sarkozy’s simplistic approach could well prevail: “They have some sensible arguments, but as often in politics, a simple idea often trumps a complicated one. The Socialists recognize the need for fiscal discipline."
On Thursday's All Things Considered, NPR's Lauren Frayer emphasized the trend towards secularization in Spain during a report on Pope Benedict XVI's visit to the country for World Youth Day. Just as she did almost a week earlier, Frayer couldn't find any local supporters of the Pope, and completely misreported how the Catholic Church extended pastoral support to women who had abortions.
Host Robert Spiegel noted in his introduction for the correspondent's report that "Spain and its view of the Catholic Church have changed radically in recent decades." Unlike her report on August 12, Frayer did play two sound bites of Catholic youth who were happy to see the pontiff, but only from two Americans. But after playing her first clip, she highlighted how "thousands of angry protesters forced their way through police barricades...shouting, 'out, out.'"
BELFAST, Northern Ireland -- Some of those caught looting stores last week in Britain were asked why they did it. Four teenagers explained to Sky News that they viewed it as "a shopping spree." One teen blamed the government: "They say (they) are going to help us but I don't see any of it. There has to be more opportunities and jobs. Help us at least and then maybe everyone will settle down."
This is the triumph of the entitlement mentality and the welfare state. Conservative MP Eric Pickles wasn't buying it: "I think that is them trying to justify being thieves, robbers and burglars."
NPR pretended that there wasn't a single supporter of Pope Benedict XVI in Spain on Friday's Morning Edition, choosing to devote an entire report on the "many people are grumbling at the cost" of the upcoming papal visit to the country. Correspondent Lauren Frayer not only failed to mention the 428,000 people from around the world who are registered for the World Youth Day event with the Pope, but also omitted the leftist bent of the protesters who are organizing a boycott.
Host Steve Inskeep, after delivering the "grumbling" line, highlighted how "local priests, though, have issued a rare complaint. The Pope's visit will cost Spain millions, at a time when the government is also slashing public salaries and public services." Frayer then explained at the beginning of her report that "more than 100 priests from Madrid's poorest barrios posted a letter online, saying they disagree with the cost and style of Pope Benedict's visit. Father Julio Saavedra says it's unfair how the Spanish government is giving tax breaks to companies like Coca-Cola and Santander Bank for sponsoring the visit."
As rioters in England set buildings aflame, hurl stones into local shops, and rip flat screen TVs off of store walls, Reuters editor-at-large Chrystia Freeland viewed Prime Minister David Cameron's fiscal policies as the "really radical" culprit.
"I think that this is the result of – directly the result of – the really radical austerity program that the Cameron government is imposing," accused Freeland on the August 10 edition of MSNBC's "Dylan Ratigan Show."