Blogs

By Tom Blumer | January 2, 2015 | 7:29 AM EST

Former New York Governor Mario Cuomo, who died on Thursday, is predictably being lionized today by USA Today's Aamer Madhani "as (a) giant in political rhetoric," and by others elsewhere in similarly glowing terms.

Madhani goes on to characterize the three-term Empire State chief executive's 1984 Democratic Convention speech in San Francisco as "what is widely considered one of the finest pieces of political rhetoric in recent memory." That it probably was. But he also calls it "a full-throated rebuttal of President Ronald Reagan, who would go on to a landslide victory over the Democratic nominee Walter Mondale." On that, Madhani is absolutely wrong. It was an attempt at a rebuttal which has since been thoroughly refuted and discredited.

By Tom Blumer | December 31, 2014 | 5:10 PM EST

Call the Ripley's Believe It or Not people. Have smelling salts available. What follows will surely be one of the more unusual things you've seen or heard this year.

In the midst of his otherwise odious Silicon Valley race-hustling shakedown effort, Jesse Jackson said something that made sense — so much sense that the rest of the press, which usually hangs on every word of his nonsensical pronouncements, has virtually ignored it, and will probably continue to.

By Tom Blumer | December 31, 2014 | 4:09 PM EST

Chris Megerian at the Los Angeles Times, in a report first published online on Tuesday, had a difficult time trying to downplay the fact that Democrat and leftist mega-donors outspent their Republican and conservative couterparts by an overwhelming margin during the past election cycle.

But Megerian made the best of it, giving readers the impression that David Koch, of the supposedly evil Koch brothers, was the fourth-largest such donor. Times editors did their part to keep the news as quiet as possible by publishing the obviously national story in the California secion of its Wednesday print edition.

By Tom Blumer | December 31, 2014 | 2:04 PM EST

Let's say that a Republican or conservative governor or big-city mayor (yes, there actually are quite a few) was in a heated dispute with his state's or city's police union. Let's further say that this official decided that his or her best method for whipping up support was to order the staff to (ahem) "ask" GOP legislators or council members to issue public statements of support while bashing the cops. If such a campaign were exposed, that town's or state's press would appropriately be all over it. That public official would also get plenty of negative national attention, especially if he or she already had a bit of a national profile.

So let's see how far and wide — my prediction is "not very" — the following report from New York City online publication DNAinfo goes — especially at the New York Times, which has itself editorially attacked the police while indulging and ignoring the serious transgressions of "protesters" who have threatened them (HT Weasel Zippers; bolds are mine):

By Tom Blumer | December 31, 2014 | 11:04 AM EST

If CNN is searching for reasons why its ratings are at an all-time low, it doesn't need to look any further than one entry in its group of "11 extraordinary people of 2014" published on December 5.

Aside from the inanity of publishing such an annual list almost four weeks before year's end — as if no extraordinary people or extraordinary acts ever take place in December — the network's fourth selection was patently offensive, and had no substantive basis for being considered "extraordinary."

By Tom Blumer | December 30, 2014 | 10:59 PM EST

Earlier this evening, Clay Waters at NewsBusters noted the New York Times Editorial Board's blistering attack on Gotham's finest.

The Times editorial insisted that the NYPD has "squandered" its presumptive respect in its treatment of Mayor Bill de Blasio since a bi-racial grand jury's December 3 decision not to indict officers on the scene in July when Eric Garner died on Staten Island. This is from a newspaper which has squandered its own credibility in this matter by either ignorantly or deliberately — I would argue the latter — failing to identify the true nature of the assorted "Justice For All" march and "protest" participants and the killer who claimed to have murdered NYPD officers Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos in their name.

By Tom Blumer | December 30, 2014 | 5:36 PM EST

The Associated Press is obsessed with global warming. It currently has seven items at its national site containing that term.

Two of them relate to how the U.S. is allegedly exporting more pollution, and therefore more global warming, to other countries even as it supposedly is cleaning up its act. These are the kinds of stories which the rest of the press would eagerly jump on if a Republican or conservative were in the White House, but they're basically getting the silent treatment (AP's Monday afternoon before Christmas publication may also have dampened interest). But the item I want to pick on predictably comes from the wire service's "Science Writer" and chief global alarmist Seth Borenstein, who two weeks ago set out to convince readers, with the help of a ginned-up federal report, that "The ice is melting! The ice is melting!" (bolds are mine throughout this post):

By Tom Blumer | December 30, 2014 | 4:03 PM EST

At the Associated Press on Christmas Day, reporter Josh Lederman carried out what might as well be his official administration stenographer duties with special aplomb.

Three paragraphs will illustrate how Lederman glossed over realities relating to the 13-year war in Afghanistan and went all gooey over Barack and Michelle Obama's vacation:

By Tom Blumer | December 30, 2014 | 11:52 AM EST

The old saying — "To err is human, but to really screw things up, you need a computer" — needs an update. In this case, it's "To err is human, but to wreck an entire industry, you need to have the federal government try to force it to computerize."

I'm referring to the government's attempt to coerce doctors into using its mandated, "clunky, time-sucking" electronic health records system. Somehow, it's barely news, with a story by Politico Magazine's Arthur Allen constituting a rare exception, that over a quarter-million doctors, i.e., half of all who are eligible, face fines next year for "failing to use the systems in the way the government required."

By Tom Blumer | December 28, 2014 | 9:52 AM EST

In St. Louis County, police have arrested 19 year-old Joshua Williams and charged him (HT Gateway Pundit) with committing "1st degree arson, 2nd degree burglary and misdemeanor theft" at the QuikTrip convenience store in Berkeley, Missouri on Christmas Eve. Williams "has confessed to the crimes."

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch gets today's prize for most absurd headline, as seen after the jump (bolds are mine throughout this post):

By Tom Blumer | December 27, 2014 | 8:40 PM EST

What follows is an object lesson in why year-end best, worst and other lists shouldn't be published until the year actually ends.

A Kwanzaa "parade" was held in Los Angeles yesterday. In reporting on the event, CBS Los Angeles published a work of fiction (saved here for future reference, fair use and discussion purposes) which absolutely belongs on any 2014 list of most embarrassing moments in journalism (HT Twitchy; bolds are mine):

By Tom Blumer | December 26, 2014 | 10:28 AM EST

Earlier this morning, I posted on Vermont's abandonment of its attempt to impose and implement a "single-payer" (i.e., government-controlled) healthcare system, and on how muted the press coverage has been.

It's difficult to overstate how devastating the Green Mountain State's blowup is to the left's oft-stated long-term goal of imposing single-payer, occasionally referred to a "Medicare for all," on the entire nation. This goes a long way towards explaining the light press coverage. President Barack Obama, Harry Reid, Barney Frank and Nancy Pelosi are among those who are on record asserting that they want — and expect — that nationwide single-payer will happen. Another such person is the now familiar and infamous Jonathan Gruber, an admitted architect (when it was convenient) of the Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare.