Blogs

By Tom Blumer | December 16, 2014 | 1:51 PM EST

Today, the world has learned that terrorists with the Taliban, the group of Islamic fundamentalist jihadists who have rained terror on Afghanistan and Pakistan for nearly two decades, "attacked a school in Peshawar, killing 141 people, 132 of them children." The death toll will almost certainly rise as some of the 114 children the BBC has reported are injured fail to survive.

But don't ask Muslims to condemn this cowardly attack on innocents. If you do, you'll upset Max Fisher at Vox, who just yesterday (HT Twitchy), in exquisite timing, insisted that it's "bigoted and Islamophobic" to expect anything of the sort:

By Tom Blumer | December 15, 2014 | 2:33 PM EST

One of the more amusing aspects of observing today's left-biased establishment media environment is seeing agenda-driven journalists directly or indirectly convey a clearly inflated sense of their outlets' self-importance.

A recent example of this came Friday from Jacob Silverman at Politico Magazine. In his writeup on conservative firebrand Charles Johnson, Silverman employed the comparative version of a word - "fringy" - rarely used in the political realm. Silverman described Breitbart and The Blaze as "even fringier" than ... well, let's try to figure that one out.

By Tom Blumer | December 15, 2014 | 2:11 AM EST

It's a good thing that establishment press publications like the New York Times have those layers of editors and fact-checkers. They're able to prevent embarrassing things like misstatements of commonly known facts, misidentifications of key parties involved in recent events, and misspellings those sloppy bloggers and new media types routinely publish.

Oh, wait a minute. All three types of errors just occurred in just one New York Times item this weekend. After publishing its original story by Jennifer Steinhauer and Elena Schneider on this Saturday's so-called "Justice For All" March in Washington, which also included coverage of New York's related event, the Times issued a correction which has to be seen to be believed (HT Twitchy):

By Tom Blumer | December 14, 2014 | 10:31 AM EST

Here's a small window into a journalist's mindset.

In a report on how lower gas prices are affecting the companies operating retail gas stations, Associated Press reporter John Fahey revealed his apparent believes that there are millions of us walking around, perhaps including him, obsessed with getting back at gas station owners for charging us so much at fill-up time for years:

By Tom Blumer | December 13, 2014 | 11:00 AM EST

Dictionary.com defines "glib" as "readily fluent, often thoughtlessly, superficially, or insincerely so."

Jonathan Gruber's apology at his Tuesday congressional hearing included that word. The word, especially the "superficial" element of its definition, applies to how the establishment press covered the hearing. With only rare exceptions, it excluded any mention of what has accurately been called "the most moving moment of the Gruber hearing": Wyoming Republican Congresswoman Cynthia Lummis's emotional recounting of how her husband died while the status of his coverage under Obamacare was in dispute.

By Tom Blumer | December 11, 2014 | 1:09 PM EST

Two recent items in the Washington Post support my contention that the establishment press is currently doing more than anyone besides Lena Dunham and "Jackie," both of whom have been irrefutably exposed as rape story fabulists, to cause victims of sexual assault to be reluctant to come forward (Note: That's not to say that the two women haven't been victims of sexual assault, "only" that the stories they are currently promulgating cannot possibly be true).

As Tim Graham at NewsBusters noted this morning, the Post provided feminist character witnesses supporting Dunham (including one who still "completely believe(s) her") and made pathetic excuses for the "Girls" star, including that she has a "demanding job." Meanwhile — and to be clear, this is appropriate work which Rolling Stone should have done in the first place — the Post has been thoroughly vetting the story of alleged University of Virginia fraternity gang-rape victim "Jackie."

By Tom Blumer | December 10, 2014 | 6:42 PM EST

Nearly six years into Barack Obama's presidency, it's still George W. Bush's fault.

Early Wednesday morning, Julie Pace at the Associated Press proved yet again why it is more than appropriate to characterize the wire service where she works as the Administration's Press. The headline at Pace's story tells us that poor President Barack Obama still has to confront the "Bush legacy," and is still stuck with his wars and "big chunks of Bush's national security apparatus." Cry me a river, Julie. One of Pace's more important omissions is the fact that the enhanced interrogations program Senate Democrats are decrying was a creation of none other than Bill Clinton.

By Tom Blumer | December 10, 2014 | 11:58 AM EST

Yesterday at 4:11 p.m. ET, Eugene Volokh at the Washington Post's Volokh Conspiracy blog sharply criticized Time.com's Eliza Berman for not being "quite fair" — i.e., being quite unfair, given the author's penchant for understatement — to Breitbart.com's John Nolte, the reporter who investigated the veracity of Lena Dunham's detailed claims about and descriptions of her alleged Oberlin College rapist.

Volokh's critique was based on language in Berman's original writeup which Time pulled at some point after Volokh's post without any notice that it had done so. Berman, as Volokh noted, "casually dismiss(ed) an investigation ... that actually succeeded in getting a publisher to correct a statement," and in the process betrayed fundamental tenets of journalism as it's supposed to be practiced.

By Tom Blumer | December 10, 2014 | 12:31 AM EST

It's more than fair to wonder why the Associated Press waited until 9:41 p.m. ET Tuesday evening to recognize the existence of Lena Dunham's most recent problems with the truth.

The AP's first recognition of the days-old story came roughly two hours after Dunham's first detailed response to convincing allegations that the account in her most recent book of being raped in college by someone named "Barry" can't possibly relate to any real human being here on earth. The AP's delay, and the slovenly unbylined report it has filed, opens the wire service up to allegations that it has chosen to participate in a coordinated attempt to pull Dunham's keister out of the fire.

By Mark Finkelstein | December 8, 2014 | 9:15 AM EST

Michael Tomasky is not content to argue, in the wake of Mary Landrieu's defeat, that Democrats should write off the South as politically unfriendly territory.  In his Daily Beast item of today, Tomasky goes to great lengths to trash the region in the ugliest of terms.

"Reactionary, prejudice-infested, fetid, reject[ing] nearly everything that’s good about this country, just one big nuclear waste site of choleric, and extremely racialized, resentment," is how Tomasky slurs most of the South, saying "almost the entire region" is as he describes it. 

By Tom Blumer | December 7, 2014 | 10:35 AM EST

In the Rolling Stone-University of Virginia fraternity gang-rape saga, National Review's Jonah Goldberg's journalistic instincts expressed in his December 1 Los Angeles Times column ("Rolling Stone rape story sends shock waves -- and stretches credulity") obviously ran circles around Los Angeles Times op-ed columnist Diana Crandall's.

On December 3, shortly before the story imploded, Crandall went after Goldberg with a vengeance for supposedly "being out of touch with college realities" and for writing the kind of column which "prevents rape victims from coming forward" (bolds and numbereed tags are mine):

By Tom Blumer | December 6, 2014 | 9:12 AM EST

The straw man argument is a fundamentally dishonest fallback tactic employed by someone whose side is losing a debate: Make up a position the other side has never taken, and then shoot it down.

The leftist fever swamp known as Vox, perhaps reacting to the utter implosion of Rolling Stone's University of Virginia fraternity gang-rape story and the potential impact it might have on keeping universities from imposing due process-denying regimes on campus, has produced a graphic employing that tactic against the apparent hordes of Americans who think that rape "isn't a real issue in America" (HT Twitchy):