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):
The Washington Post’s “On Faith” blog network bills itself as “a conversation on religion and politics.” But the conversation of “On Faith” more accurately resembles a diatribe justifying liberal politics with religious imagery.
During this past week, Becky Garrison claimed that Christian actor Kirk Cameron was not a Christian because he opposes homosexual marriage, and Lisa Miller declared that “In churches across the land, women are still treated as second class citizens.”
Novelist (and Socialist Workers Party member) China Mieville wrote the main essay for the London issue of the New York Times Sunday Magazine, "'Oh London, You Drama Queen.'" According to him, London is a mess of racism and youth alienation, and only free public housing and celebration of loud music on the tube will save it. He also excused last summer's burning and rioting, motivated by a "deep sense of injustice": "Youths taking TVs, clothes, carpets, food from broken-open shops, sometimes with dizzy exuberance, sometimes with what looked like thoughtful care."
Even the photo captions are replete with leftist smuggery, contrasting an old-fashioned butcher with a bleak-looking dance club: "Smithfield Market, in Central London, is rooted in the past./The scene at Plastic People, a club in Hackney, looks to the future."
Times Watch has shown how deeply the Occupy Wall Street movement has embedded itself into the liberal psyche of New York Times reporters, who can’t help clogging their stories with flattering references to the lefty sit-in. The protesters may be dispersed, but the dream lives on in Times stories on such seemingly unlikely subjects as a revival of an Arthur Miller play and the sinking of the Titanic (marking the second Titanic anniversary story from the Times containing a “99%” percent reference).
New York Times theatre critic Charles Isherwood wedged in some praise for the Occupy Wall Street movement in a story on the revival of the Arthur Miller play “Death of a Salesman” in Sunday Arts & Leisure section, “‘Salesman’ Comes Calling, Right on Time.” Isherwood thinks it comes at just the right moment, a corrective to the “ethos of the banker-gods and C.E.O.’s set the overriding cultural tone for much of the last 30 years.” (He’s talking about the Reagan era.)
A man in Berkeley has died as the result of a violent crime. A contributing factor to his death was a failure by the police to respond to a 911 called which was deemed a "non-emergency." The police were in a posture of only responding to "emergency" calls because "were preparing for an Occupy protest headed to UC Berkeley from Oakland."
It will be interesting to see if this gets covered by the establishment press outside of Northern California, especially now that Drudge had it in his headlines during much of the day. Here is part of the original report from KCBS in San Francisco:
In “For London Youth, Down and Out Is Way of Life,” New York Times reporter Landon Thomas Jr. came up with a sparkling new solution to the looters and rioters who stole sneakers and cell phones in last summer's nationwide rampage: Taxpayer-funded job training!
Thomas last got Times Watch’s attention last December with his bizarre hypothetical of what might happen if Europe abandoned it’s euro currency scheme. He wrote on Thursday’s front page:
It's bad enough when items which should so obviously be leading the news aren't. It's worse when you realize that one of the reasons for the deliberate avoidance is that the press is allowing itself to be coopted into treating insignificant orchestrated political stunts to chew up scarce time and resources.
Readers who are wondering why outfits like CNN (covered yesterday by Matt Hadro at NewsBusters), the New York Times (as noted by NB's Clay Waters) and the Associated Press (caught Tuesday by yours truly) would bother to prepare reports on a dozen-person anti-Mitt Romney demonstration at the Westminster Dog Show can stop wondering. At Polititicker, Hunter Walker and Colin Campbell report that Americans United for Change (home page; Facebook page), a Democratic Party-connected group, is driving it (bolds are mine):
CNN gave a measly eleven seconds of coverage to the 2011 March for Life, attended by an estimated 100,000 people, but they saw fit to give more time on Wednesday to a "Dogs Against Romney" protest of about a dozen participants.
Correspondent Jeanie Moos admitted that the tiny protest "was a treat we in the media couldn't resist." She was on the scene Tuesday to interview "doggie protesters" ripping GOP candidate Mitt Romney for an incident that occurred 19 years ago, and even touted an Obama campaign tweet sniping at Romney for the very same reason. [Video below the break. Click here for audio.]
On Friday, the Daily Caller reported that Occupy movement protesters at CPAC were being paid $60 a day to be there. (Here I thought the left was really motivated these days. Guess not.)
At the self-described Essential Global News Network known as the Associated Press, this fact and other inconvenient items about the movement's pathetic efforts at and around CPAC are being ignored. Before demonstrating that, I'll identify what the additional embarrassments are.
The passage of "controversial" right-to-work legislation in Indiana is a "blow to organized labor." That's the spin by Reuters reporter Susan Guyett, who front-loaded her coverage of the bill's passage by focusing on anger from liberals and labor unions over the new legislation (emphases mine):
The former Tip O'Neill staffer-turned-political analyst who'd never heard of congressional insider trading until President Obama mentioned it in last week's State of the Union insists he is unaware of the Bush Derangement Syndrome of many on the Left during the former president's tenure in the Oval Office. What's more, that's not his bias talking, it's just objective reality.
"There's a real level of national hatred of the president that I hadn't seen before. Certainly not under Clinton or under Dubya," MSNBC Hardball host Chris Matthews argued on WMAL radio's Morning Majority program this morning. "The hatred, the Hitler mustaches, all that stuff, I haven't seen that before," Matthews added, prompting co-hosts Mary Katharine Ham and Bryan Nehman to incredulously retort that, no, in fact, the Left used Hitler comparisons against the former president.
So a guy whose contract was terminated by NPR on a phony pretext for not toeing the liberal line enough, including writing a book ("Enough: The Phony Leaders, Dead-End Movements, and Culture of Failure That Are Undermining Black America--and What We Can Do About It") which indicted the modern civil-rights movement for, well, undermining Black America, now appears to want eliminate "Constitution" and "Founding Fathers" from the lexicon of Republican candidates -- and possibly, it would appear, from political discussion in general -- because, well, they're racial code words. How ironic.
That is what Juan Williams outrageously claims in his latest column at the Hill today (bold is mine):
One way the left-leaning media like to downplay the annual March for Life is to play up how both sides of the abortion debate showed up in Washington, DC to mark the anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision, when the reality of the matter is that hundreds of thousands of pro-lifers outnumber their opponents by a very large margin every year.
On Monday, CBS's local site for the DC area took that form of bias to another level. Their photo essay, titled "Activists Hold Annual March For Life On Roe v. Wade Anniversary," completely left out the March for Life participants. Instead, the outlet put up seven photos of the handful of "pro-choice" demonstrators that showed up in front of the Supreme Court.
Presidential candidate, Rick Santorum, was the victim of a ‘glitter bombing’ Saturday night, as he delivered remarks following a third place finish in the South Carolina primary. Glitter bombing is a supposed act of protest in which opponents are showered with glitter by leftists who support same-sex marriage policies. What exactly would cause grown men and women to perform an act that is seemingly drawn from the mind of a child?
In 2005, Michael Savage famously wrote a book titled, Liberalism is a Mental Disorder, the subject of which is self-explanatory. And more recently, Dr. Lyle Rossiter, a board-certified clinical psychologist, wrote a book in which he diagnosed the ideology of the left as a tangible mental illness. Perhaps though, liberalism is not so much a novel mental disorder, but a more cleverly disguised form of illness already widely studied since the late ‘60s – narcissistic personality disorder (NPD).
The Mayo Clinic defines NPD as “a mental disorder in which people have an inflated sense of their own importance and a deep need for admiration.” This seems in tune with the fact that liberals, along with their degenerate offspring, the Occupy Wall Street movement, believe their policies and platforms fall in the majority - or the 99% if you will - despite being outnumbered by conservatives at a 2-1 clip.
There are other symptoms that define NPD and the left alike…
Yesterday's "Occupy Congress" push by the Occupy D.C. protesters resulted in four arrests at the U.S. Capitol and a lockdown at the White House after someone lobbed "an object similar to a smoke bomb" over the White House fence.
If such disturbing incidents accompanied a Tea Party protest, the harsh reaction by the Washington Post would be predictable and, indeed, to an extent justifiable. But Washington Post reporters Annie Gowen and Katie Rogers painted the protests in a generally positive light in Metro front page article, "Occupiers confront seats of power."* Indeed, Gowen and Rogers buried deep in their article the fact that one of the four protesters arrested was charged with assaulting a police officer.
Less than a year from its inception, the far-left Occupy Wall Street movement is already sputtering. Many liberal big-city mayors have ejected protestors from their campsites and their donations have dried up. To top it off, a big event touted to "Occupy Congress" fizzled big-time Tuesday in Washington, D.C. That didn't stop the Associated Press from trying to spin away the march's failure.
Instead of headlining its report from the event with the big news that a march expected to bring in up to 10,000 protestors ended up drawing in far less than that, the wire service headlined it with the matter-of-fact headline "Several hundred Occupy protestors rally at Capitol." While reporter Ben Nuckols did mention the failure to meet expectations, his story didn't mention the other big news that OWS is almost out of money:
Joe Scarborough said it about Rick Perry, but it could perhaps have applied to other Republican presidential contenders who are going after Mitt Romney's record at Bain Capital.
On Morning Joe today, discussing Perry's depiction of venture capitalists like Romney as "vultures," Scarborough said that the Texas governor: "sounds like a stoned NYU grad student in Zuccotti Park." Video after the jump.
The 8:52 a.m. and 9:00 a.m. national headlines page at the Associated Press's main site this morning teased a story about how twenty -- wow, a whole twenty -- Occupy Wall Street protesters spent the night at Zuccotti Park after barricades which had been up for almost two months were removed. Not only that, but the related brief story (saved here as a graphic for future reference, fair use and discussion purposes), has an accompanying series of four photos (most stories usually have just one).
The cold weather may have really cut into the crowds "occupying" two public spaces in the nation's capital, but The Washington Post doesn't care about crowd size. It's still publicizing some sort of protest juggernaut, like a ski resort manufactures snow when none has fallen. The Post's Sunday front page was dominated by the headline "LOVE AMID THE TENTS." The biggest "news" of the day was casual sex, hippie-style.
Post reporter Annie Gowen proclaimed that "As the Occupy movement enters its fourth month locally, it has spawned two full-service camps, more than 100 arrests and an ongoing constitutional debate over the right to free speech on federal land. But a combustible combination of youthful energy, enthusiasm for shared ideals and tight living quarters has given rise to something else: Romance. Lots and lots of romance." The bolded part was italicized and sprawled above a four-column picture taken inside a tent looking out.
Occupy Wall Street attacks income inequality and the richest 1 percent, adopting as its slogan ''we are the 99 percent.'' In October, its protesters staged a ''millionaires march' 'in New York City, parading to the homes of wealthy citizens such as Rupert Murdoch and David Koch. But only some riches bother the Occupiers, who have ignored the massive wealth of celebrities in their own ranks.
The top 25 richest celebrities supporting Occupy Wall Street, according to the website Celebrity Net Worth, possess a combined net worth just over $4 billion.
Appearing as a guest on Wednesday's Piers Morgan Tonight on CNN ,as he discussed the Occupy Wall Street protests, former NBC anchor Tom Brokaw warned that a "class war" could develop unless "income inequality" is addressed. Brokaw:
Americans need only to open the daily newspaper or turn on the nightly news in order to see the media’s double standard. Each day we continue to hear the Occupy Wall Street movement’s hijacked the slogan of "the 99 percent" which has been forced it into our lexicon and the media’s daily lingo. And almost comically, Time magazine has decided that "The Protester" is 2011's Person of the Year.
The Daily Caller's Mary Katharine Ham, reminds us to travel back in time to appreciate the media double standard as she points out that:
Remember the OWS protestor, Justin Wedes, who along with his sanity-challenged companion, Ketchup, was featured on the Colbert Report as a spokesman for the Occupy Wall Street movement? Camera hog Wedes was notable for his massive self-righteous chip on the shoulder which caused him to give "down twinkles" to what he claimed as the moral failings of the "One Percent."
Well, down twinkles to Wedes himself who has been exposed in the New York Post as a scam artist forger who tried to cheat the taxpayers out of nearly $5000 for a government grant despite the fact that his "One Percent" family from the plush Michigan neighborhood of Huntington Woods could easily afford to just give him that money:
Scruffy progressive protesters locked themselves together across railroad tracks, blocked traffic and shouted profanities at police on Tuesday in a coordinated "West Coast Port Shutdown." Truckers lost wages. Shippers lost business. This is what the Occupy Wall Street movement calls "victory."
Aging Big Labor bosses toasted one another from the sidelines as they declared the "rebirth of the labor movement." What's really going on? It's an old-school power grab by a decrepit union wrapped in self-deluded social media do-goodism.
No wonder President Obama adopted some of the language of the Occupy movement in his class-warfare speech this week. It's led by the likes of Alfredo Carrasquillo, a fellow "community organizer" with whom the president perhaps identifies. Carrasquillo specializes in breaking into foreclosed homes to dole them out to people—beginning with himself—to live in.
Chris Hayes gave Carrasquillo a sympathetic platform on his MSNBC show this morning. Making it clear that he was speaking as a "devil's advocate," not, God forbid, expressing his own opinion, Hayes gently inquired of Carrasquillo whether, you know, it could be said he has no right to break into and live in homes owned by others. Dismissing the notion out of hand, Carrasquillo described theft of others' property as "technicalities." That seemed good enough for Hayes, who helpfully pointed out that the homes Carrasquillo is breaking into "are just sitting there, no one's making use of them." Video after the jump.
Last week, CNN's Steve Kastenbaum (podcast is also at link) visited what he characterized as Occupy Wall Street's "nerve center" (but don't call it a "headquarters," Occupiers insisted) in space provided by an anonymous donor. No, it wasn't at Zuccotti Park or any other open-air location. It was, and presumably still is, in Lower Manhattan, one block south of the New York Stock Exchange.
Along the way, Kastenbaum interviewed several people who portrayed themselves as "volunteer staff" for a supposedly leaderless movement, but as is par for the course in the establishment press when leftists are involved, didn't reveal anyone's previous background. At Heritage, Lachlan Markay reports at Robert Bluey's blog that the prior affiliations and involvements of at least a few of those interviewed belies their starry-eyed self-portrayal:
Washington Post Style section editors gave freelance writer Mark Jenkins space for a 9-paragraph, 9-illustration feature item today entitled "Nothing shy in the art of Occupy."
"The occupiers don't have a single agenda, so there's no way any of the posters can be off-message," Jenkins gushed. "They might slaughter Wall Street's bull or show the takedown of the Monopoly icon, or they can send a bold and colorful message to authority," reads a caption underneath four post images on page C1 of the December 6 paper.
On December 2, the Associated Press carried a story by Terry Collins with the following headline: "Murder charge filed in Occupy Oakland slaying."
What? I thought that the related November attack, despite a statement from an actual eyewitness, "was unrelated to the ongoing protest of U.S. financial institutions" -- i.e., that it was unrelated to Occupy Oakland. After all, the San Francisco Chronicle and the AP both carried statements to that effect several weeks ago. Surprise, surprise (not):
It appears that cleanup crews around the country aren't the only ones engaging in sanitation exercises in the wake of the largely disbanded Occupy encampments around the country.
At the Associated Press, which made the goings-on in the waning days of Occupy LA national news, the aftermath is apparently just a local or regional story. Here's a list of results at the AP's national site of a search on "occupy Los Angeles" (not in quotes):