Embarrass Obama, and expect the liberal media to go after you, no matter who you are: That's what National Review journalist Byron York warned early Thursday afternoon.
He was quickly proven right by a story from reporter Larry Rohter in Friday's New York Times, "Real Deal On Plumber Reveals New Slant," in which Rohter took a wrench to Joe Wurzelbacher (aka "Joe the Plumber"), the citizen who dared to question Obama on his tax plan as the Democrat campaigned in his neighborhood in Toledo, Ohio. Obama responded with a classic paleo-liberal cliche: "I think that when you spread the wealth around, it's good for everybody."
That insight into Obama's mindset was politically fascinating, but Rohter buried it in the 11th paragraph of his story, focusing his investigation on such vital matters as "Joe's" actual first name (Samuel) and whether or not he has a plumber's license.
With 15minutesoffame comes 15 hours of “gotcha” scrutiny -- especially if you’re a voter who has daredto criticize Barack Obama, the liberal media’s Chosen One for president.
Ohio plumber Joe Wurzelbacher has had his 15 minutes of fame, capping it off with an unplanned appearance as the poster boy of populist tax policy in last night’s presidential debate. So now it’s time for the press to turn its sights on him not as a human-interest story but as an investigative subject.
Jonathan Martin of The Politico was among the first out of the gate, with blog posts noting that Wurzelbacher, affectionately known by most of America as “Joe The Plumber,” has a tax lien against him and doesn’t have a plumber’s license. Martin conveniently forgot to mention that the law doesn’t require one.) Bloomberg also has a story on the tax lien, and AP and The Washington Post did their part to make a story out of the “unlicensed” non-story.
On the trail with Sarah Palin in Richmond, Va., New York Times reporter Patrick Healy filed a condescending profile of her stump speech in Tuesday's "A Riveting Speaker, Waving the Flag."
Healy claimed that Palin's "partisan zeal" and "with-us-or-against-us message" could "repel some independent voters," and that her speeches have "holes in logic." It was the sort of treatment that gaffe machine Joe Biden never receives from the Times:
Here is the thing about Gov. Sarah Palin: She loves America. Really loves it. She loves the smell of cut grass and hay, as she told Ohio voters Sunday. She loves Navy bases, she said in Virginia Beach on Monday morning. She loves America's "most beautiful national anthem," she told a crowd here a few hours later.
Shocker! The mainstream media highlights right wing hate, but nearly ignores hate coming from the left. Such a topic best selling author and former CBS insider Bernard Goldberg exposed appearing on the October 13 "O’Reilly Factor." Host Bill O’Reilly scorned the media for accusing John McCain of "fostering and encouraging hatred" from a few crazies at his rallies, but give Democrats "a complete pass" for attending the vile DailyKos convention. A stunned O’Reilly wondered "am I living in the Twilight Zone?"
Bernie Goldberg agreed and added the media elite "were never concerned" about constant references to Bush as a Nazi. Accentuating O’Reilly’s point that Democratic presidential candidates attended the DailyKos convention, Goldberg also reminded the audience that these same candidates boycotted Fox News. Goldberg concluded "case closed. That’s all you need to know about that."
A Barack Obama supporter in Ohio with deep roots in Democratic politics -- and a 2001 sex-related felony conviction to his name -- is behind two new confrontational videos that bait ignorant people into calling Barack Obama a terrorist.
The first video was released Wednesday and has gone viral. It currently has more than 1.1 million views on YouTube. Part II went online a day later and is well on its way to viral status, with more than 145,000 views.
The John McCain and Sarah Palin supporters in the videos are characterized as “The McCain-Palin Mob.” The videos selectively feature voters who, upon being asked antagonistic questions, make some outrageous statements about Obama.
Voting for Round One of the Sweet-On-Obama Sixteen ends on Sunday. Head there now and cast your ballots. And if you've already voted, check back now and throughout the weekend to see how your choices are faring.
The smart folks soberly support Barack Obama, while the ridiculous-looking rednecks love Sarah Palin. That's the subtext of the New York Times coverage on Wednesday. Jennifer Steinhauer was watching the second presidential debate with Obama fans at a Mexican restaurant in Des Moines, "Where He First Got Going, Cheering Obama On."
Debate watchers at Dos Rios -- the sort of crowd that can cite chapter and verse of Medicaid waivers without notes -- watched intensely, taking their eyes off the television only to grab a Corona.
Strangely, one of the self-evident geniuses in attendance thinks Barack Obama wants universal health care, despite the Times' desperateinsistence that that's just one of the McCain campaign's many lies:
Health care was clearly a big issue in this crowd, and Mr. Obama's statement that health care was a "right" got a big round, too. "I like the fact that he is taking steps toward universal health care," said Mr. Matson, an osteopath.
In contrast, a Republican rally in Florida featuring Sarah Palin is painted in threatening terms by the Times. In herWednesday story, "Palin Plays to Conservative Base in Florida Rallies," Julie Bosman seems perturbed at the sight of conservative Republicans in their natural element.
In his weekly column, New York Times Public Editor Clark Hoyt ludicrously argued that Barack Obama has gotten tougher coverage since January 2007 (when Obama entered the race) than John McCain:
By my count, The Times has published more tough articles on Obama, 20, than on McCain, 13, since the beginning of last year.
The Times has never filed any story targeting Obama that remotely approaches the mendacity of its February 21 hit piece alleging a McCain affair with a telecommunications lobbyist (Hoyt himself at the time said the Times was wrong to run the affair allegations). Also, Hoyt's narrow definition of bias helpfully eliminates stories with asides about McCain's temper, or constant mentions of McCain's "gaffes."
Taking liberal media audacity to higher levels, John Heilemann would have you believe that the loss of support from liberal journalists is itself evidence the wheels are falling off the McCain campaign. Heilemann recently wrote about a "shift" in the attitudes and opininos of the media away from John McCain and towards Barack Obama. His examples are, well, typical.
Jonathan Alter, Joe Klein, Richard Cohen, David Ignatius, Jacob Weisberg: all former McCain admirers now turned brutal critics. Equally if not more damaging, the shift has been just as pronounced, if less operatic, among straight-news reporters. Suddenly, McCain is no longer being portrayed as a straight-talking, truth-telling maverick but as a liar, a fraud, and an opportunist with acute anger-management issues.
By a show of hands, how many of you knew these guys were, as Heilemann reports, "former McCain admirers?"
When interviewed by Eyeblast.tv last month, Google CEO Eric Schmidt said that YouTube, the video-sharing site owned by his company, is "pretty serious" about removing the "strange" videos that keep popping up on the site, especially videos "that can be used to incite bad outcomes." Apparently videos designed to incite Catholics don't fall into that category.
A YouTube user who goes by the moniker "fsmdude" has posted more than 30 videos under the title "Eucharist Desecration." Each video features an attack on a symbol that Catholics consider sacred -- by blow gun, nail gun, boiling, sword and cigarette in a few recent episodes.
The creator of the videos isn't subtle about his intent. He was angered by reports of a college student allegedly receiving e-mail threats from "fanatical Catholics" after the student snatched a wafer at mass, so "fsmdude" decided to repeatedly profane the Eucharist on camera for all to see.
"Does Palin have explaining to do," Chicago Tribune religion blogger Manya Brachear asked in her post-vice presidential debate blog post. Here's how Brachear opened her October 3 entry at her "The Seeker" blog:
Pentecostals have called on the mainstream media to stop mocking their sister Sarah Palin. But when will the Republican vice-presidential candidate answer the questions that swirl every time a new church video surfaces on YouTube? Was Thursday's prime time debate yet another missed opportunity?
By contrast, a review of Brachear's blog entries dealing with Sen. Obama's controversial former pastor,Rev. Jeremiah Wright, show Brachear did not have similar concerns with Obama's relationship with Wright. Indeed, back in June, Brachear asked, "Can a candidate worship in peace?" The Trib staffer was referring to the fact that Obama was leaving Trinity United Church of Christ, blaming media scrutiny for ruining the worship experience for himself and his fellow parishioners:
Sarah Palin may have pleased Republicans and surprised Democrats with her strong performance in Thursday night's vice presidential debates, but her "carefully scripted talking points" and shallow style were the opening theme of Friday's lead story in the New York Times by Patrick Healy, "Cordial but Pointed, Palin and Biden Face Off."
Gov. Sarah Palin used a steady grin, folksy manner and carefully scripted talking points to punch politely and persist politically at the vice-presidential debate on Thursday night, turning in a performance that her rival, Senator Joseph R. Biden Jr., sought to undermine with cordially delivered but pointed criticism.
Remember the furor and the comedic punch lines as a result of Sarah Palin’s statement, implying that she needed someone to clarify the role of the Vice President?
Well, brace yourselves for a similarly overwhelming media reaction to Joe Biden’s solution on where one can locate the definition of the Vice President’s role – Article I of the Constitution.
Problem being, it’s actually Article II.
To most, this will simply constitute another famous Biden gaffe. However, Biden was so forceful and patronizing in his argument during last night’s debate that Dick Cheney should realize ‘Article I of the Constitution defines the role of the vice president,’ that it bears pointing out.
The full excerpt from the debate follows (h/t to Michelle Malkin):
Washington Post metro columnist Marc Fisher treated readers of the October 2 paper to a look at outgoing "moderate" Republican Wayne Gilchrest (1st District-Md.), who was felled in a primary contest back in February by a conservative state senator backed by the fiscally conservative group Club for Growth.
Fisher dutifully documented and then applauded not only Gilchrest's disillusionment with Sen. John McCain and his disdain for the GOP's conservative base, but of the American middle class at-large, whom he charged as obsessed with "comfort." (emphasis mine):
Wayne Gilchrest, the nine-term Republican congressman who represents Maryland's Eastern Shore and parts of Anne Arundel County, has had it, and he's ready to talk.
He's had it with his own party, which he says "has become more narrow, more self-serving, more centered around 'I want, I want, I want.' " He's finished with his party's presidential candidate, John McCain, who Gilchrest says "recites memorized pieces of information in a narrow way, whereas Barack Obama is constantly evaluating information, using his judgment. One guy just recites what's in front of him, and the other has initiative and reason and prudence and wisdom."
On the October 1 edition of "The View" Barbara Walters chastised Elisabeth Hasselbeck for allegedly never conceding a point, but never offered such a criticism for left-wing ideologue Joy Behar or even looney conspiracy theorist Rosie O’Donnell. This occurred just as rumors abound that Elisabeth is clashing with her fellow co-hosts.
Responding to more Sarah Palin bashing and Joy Behar labeling the Alaska governor "dumb" (talk about the pot calling the kettle black) Hasselbeck once again rose up as the lone voice on the panel, and even a hostile studio audience, in defending Governor Palin. Apparently taking issue with disputing some co-hosts’ assertion that Palin lacks the intellectual capacity to be vice president, Barbara Walters exclaimed "every single day you never ever say ‘maybe this is another point.’"
While both CNN.com and FoxNews.com sent e-mail alert subscribers "breaking news" alerts on the Dow's steep slide yesterday in reaction to failure of the bailout package in the House of Representatives, CNN didn't think it worthy of a breaking news text to note the gains made today in the market.
Here are the Fox News text messages sent on September 30 regarding the Dow Jones:
DOW REGAINS NEARLY 500 POINTS ONE DAY AFTER RECORD LOSS (received 4:08 p.m. EDT)
DOW REBOUNDING, UP MORE THAN 300 POINTS A DAY AFTER 778-POINT FREEFALL (received 1:27 p.m. EDT)
Below, in reverse chronological order are the text message alerts I received from Fox News and CNN.com yesterday tracking the Dow's drop.:
Joe Biden's FDR gaffe was noticed, but with a shoulder shrug, by Newsweek's October 6 edition of "Conventional Wisdom." The same feature cheered Obama's debate performance as "presidential," gave the thumbs up to Dave Letterman's tirade against Sen. John McCain, and reveled in Gov. Sarah Palin's "moose caught in the headlights" interview with CBS "Evening News" anchor Katie Couric.
"Most popular YouTube video of the week: Katie Couric field-dressing Palin. Sometimes it takes a woman to expose a woman," read the introductory caption for the "First Great Debate Edition" of the weekly CW digest.
Yet when it came to Obama's gaffe-prone running mate, the CW only assigned a sideways arrow to the Delaware senator:
The New York Times is going the way of MSNBC. I suspect they're going to find that appealing to the Angry Left is not a successful business model.
Rather than investigate the campaign donations paid out to Senators Dodd, Clinton, and specifically, Barack Obama, by Fannie Mae and Freddy Mac, the NYT focused instead on McCain aide Rick Davis's employment by the consulting firm, Davis & Manafort.
The AP is suddenly alarmed that no one is "running Alaska" while Palin is out on the stump with John McCain, so much so that they've published a piece wondering if Alaska is about to sink into the icy grip of the Alaskan tundra, or something, because Palin isn't there. One wonders if the AP is all upset that no one is in Congress representing certain districts of Illinois or Delaware with Obama and Biden roaming the countryside instead of sitting in the Senate? One wonders if the AP has even noticed that Obama has spent less than 200 days in the Senate since he took his seat in that august body in 2005? Talk about rudderless! Talk about short-shrifting the representation of constituents!
The AP is all about the wringing of hands because Palin has been absent from the Alaska governor's office for the last three weeks. I guess the AP isn't aware that Alaska has a Lt. Governor? But, let's face it, the AP doesn't care about Alaska at all because this article is only a thinly disguised excuse to slam Palin for not running to the press to fawn over them and cater to their every need.
Most of this piece is centered on the way McCain and Palin are trying to control the Palin message, as opposed to any real worry that Alaska is running rudderless. In fact, this AP smear piece is a bait and switch, not really about what it seems to be about.
Elisabeth Hasselbeck finally called out some of "The View"co-hosts on the Sarah Palin bashing she finally proclaimed September 25 as "Hate Sarah Palin Day." Immediately the other co-hosts defensively swarmed over the comment denying there is any hate for Governor Palin. Joy Behar claimed "it’s not personal. It’s my country that I’m worried about."
Hasselbeck’s remark was sparked by a discussion over a new YouTube video displaying a Kenyan preacher praying to protect a woman, who resembles Gov. Palin, from witchcraft. Sherri Shepherd and Elisabeth Hasselbeck explained to the other two theologically challenged co-hosts that this is simply a prayer to protect this woman, possibly Sarah Palin, from evil.
Whoopi also defended playing and discussing the video stating "if Barack Obama had been in that church and somebody was praying over him to keep him free from witchcraft, we’d be having this discussion, okay?" However, the previous day, Whoopi sang a different tune responding to Elisabeth’s mention of Joe Biden’s many gaffes.
It's good to know that Team Obama is up to date on the latest news from Iraq. Since the media are so eager to report the “lies” and gaffes by Republicans John McCain and Sarah Palin, will they cover the mistake Democrat Joe Biden, the man known as a “Gaffe Machine," made on Wednesday, September 24?
Biden's tough-talking Cincinatti, Ohio foreign policy speech was designed to boost Obama's credibility on the War on Terror and foster confidence in the Illinois Senator's ability to handle international issues. The Dem veep pick discussed the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and attempted to talk down McCain's positions while portraying Obama as the true expert.
In the process, Biden laid the bluster on thick and appeared to either be dishonest or unable to keep up with the news--or both--by claiming “... the surge is over, andthe political reconciliation it was supposed to produce has not materialized." (transcript)
Networks have given more coverage this year to the 6-year-old collapse of Enron than the role of federal government-sponsored mortgage lenders Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in the present financial crisis, Media Research Center President Brent Bozell noted in a September 25 interview with the hosts of Fox News Channel's "Fox & Friends." The NewsBusters publisher argued that the media's lack of interest was due to its ideological commitment to the liberal social aims of Fannie and Freddie: extending loans to people who otherwise were priced out of owning their homes.
Bozell appeared via satellite from Nashville, Tennessee. A portion of the transcript follows [audio of segment here]:
STEVE DOOCY, co-host: Look at the coverage that the Fannie Mae catastrophe is getting as opposed to say the Enron collapse a number of years ago. Much different.
BOZELL: That's an understatement.... If you look at the height of the crisis during that time period, you know that the word Fannie Mae never appears in an ABC transcript? ABC never reported it. And ask yourself what's bigger, Enron or this? CNN, how about this, CNN gave at the height of this gave Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac three percent the coverage that they gave Enron. Get this statistic: This year, this year, there's been more coverage by the networks on Enron -- which isn't in the news -- than on both of these calamities combined.
Andrea Mitchell is mad at John McCain and Sarah Palin because the McCain camp excluded the press from Palin's meetings with foreign officials this week. She is so upset that she as much as charged that John McCain's treatment of the press is as bad as that of the dictatorial ruler in North Korea, Kim Jong Il.
On Tuesday's Rachel Maddow show (MSNBC), Mitchell said that excluding the press when Palin met with foreign leaders was not "standard practice" and mentioned that in oppressive countries like Sudan and North Korea the press is often excluded. Mitchell also added that The State Department has a "standard practice" of making sure the press is included in meetings even in foreign countries. But Obama also excluded the press in his meetings with leaders in Europe this Summer, yet this fact didn’t even rate a mention by Mitchell tonight.
Once again Rasmussen Reports presents evidence that more and more Americans are coming to the realization that the media is biased to the left. This time Rasmussen's polling results shows that more Americans than ever think the folks chosen from amongst the Old Media to moderate the upcoming presidential debates are biased in favor of Barack Obama.
Earlier in the month, Rasmussen found that 50% of their respondents feel that the media is trying to help Obama get elected while only 11% felt the media was trying to help McCain win. This time Rasmussen finds that 56% feel that the debate moderators are biased in their questioning, though veteran TV newsman Jim Lehrer (PBS) gets better personal numbers with 43% saying he'll be neutral as a moderator.
Discussing Bill Clinton’s appearance the previous on the September 23 edition of "The View," Sherri Shepherd expressed her joy at meeting the former president. Recounting her picture with Clinton Sherri Shepherd exclaimed "we were grinning, Bill Clinton and his women" and added "we love you."
After Shepherd’s praising remarks, Barbara Walters addressed the daytime show’s very soft treatment of Bill Clinton versus the women’s grilling, some would say sandbagging, of John McCain. Walters expressed she has "the utmost respect for John McCain." Whoopi Goldberg responded "Bill Clinton’s not running for president."
Whoopi Goldberg then proceeded to invite all of the remaining major party presidential and vice presidential candidates, Barack Obama, Joe Biden, and Sarah Palin. Whoopi pledged "we are going to ask the same questions that people are asking." How many Americans are worried a McCain administration will appoint pro-slavery Supreme Court justices?
Associated Press reporter Sara Kugler pounded out a 7-paragraph article today on how McCain running mate Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (R), has "[Banned] reporters from meetings with leaders" from around the world. Palin is in New York City for the open of the United Nations General Assembly. A review of media coverage from Obama's behind-closed-doors chats with European heads of state, however, shows no such complaint by the media about a lack of access.
Kugler complained that Palin "has not held a press conference in nearly four weeks of campaigning, on Tuesday banned reporters from her first meetings with world leaders, allowing access only to photographers and a television crew." The reporter noted that her news agency objected to the terms of media coverage the McCain campaign set for Palin's meetings with Afghanistan's Hamid Karzai and Colombia's Alvaro Uribe (emphases mine):
Those sessions and meetings scheduled for Wednesday are part of the Republican campaign's effort to give Palin experience in foreign affairs. She has never met a foreign head of state and first traveled outside North America just last year.
The campaign told the TV producer, print and wire reporters in the press pool that follows the Alaska governor that they would not be admitted with the photographers and camera crew taken in to photograph the meetings. At least two news organizations, including The Associated Press, objected and were told that the decision was not subject to discussion.
On Thursday’s Nightline, ABC co-anchor Terry Moran offered up a nearly seven-minute-long hit piece on “John McCain 2.0,” about how the GOP nominee has, according to Moran, dramatically changed his basic message, his campaign style, his policy positions and launched a dirty ad campaign.
“The old John McCain repeatedly promised voters a different kind of campaign — nobler, less nasty, better,” Moran argued. “That was then, this is now.” After running a clip from an ad criticizing Obama for voting in favor of sex education for kindergartners (“called, quote, ‘simply false’ by the non-partisan Annenberg Center’s FactCheck.org,” Moran scolded), Nightline offered a condemnatory soundbite from ABC analyst Matthew Dowd: “I think the McCain campaign wants to have a campaign in the mud.”
New York Times Public Editor Clark Hoyt evaluated two tough political stories in the Sunday Week in Review, one anti-McCain, the other anti-Palin. While he found the McCain piece fair, he faulted the anti-Palin piece.
In both cases, Times reporters and editors rallied to the defense of the pieces, finding McCain guilty of "demonstrable falsehoods" and Palin of"sometimes petty, peremptory" political leadership in Alaska.
When a newspaper like The Times takes a tough, critical look at a candidate in this year's presidential election, it has to give readers enough solid evidence to make up their own minds about whether it is being accurate and fair. Consider two front-page articles last weekend: I think one delivered the goods and one fell short.
Washington Post staffer Christopher Twaroski's 18-pargraph September 21 story on how John McCain was "Seeking Minority Groups' Support" in Northern Virginia quickly morphed from a rehash of former Sen. George Allen's "macaca" moment to a gauzy focus on Sen. Barack Obama's campaigning efforts in the Old Dominion.
Twaroski opened his article noting that the former Republican senator from Virginia was the featured guest speaker at a Saturday GOP "ethnic unity rally" held in Alexandria, but quickly shifted focus to a disruption by two Democratic protestors:
When he first reached the podium to speak, Allen was greeted by a shrieking whistle and two women screaming: "George Allen is a racist! Shame on the Republican Party for having him speak!"
The outburst referred to remarks by Allen in his 2006 reelection campaign against James Webb, in which he used a slur to refer to one of Webb's campaign volunteers, a college student of Indian descent.