CNN.com on Tuesday covered for Democrat vice presidential candidate Joe Biden's comment that the Obama campaign ad making fun of John McCain's inability to use a computer "was terrible."
According to CNN's Alexander Mooney, "Joe Biden can rest easy" for making this remark during his interview Monday with "CBS Evening News" anchor Katie Couric because the ad "only ran 6 times" (video embedded right, full report on Couric's interview by my colleague Brent Baker available here).
Well, that's six times more than 1964's "Daisy" ad -- which historians believe helped President Lyndon Johnson defeat Barry Goldwater -- initially aired. In fact, even the liberal Wikipedia views it that way:
On last night's Election Center, CNN Legal Analyst Jeffrey Toobin, Senior Political Analyst Gloria Borger and CNN Anchor Campbell Brown continued to promote the Obama talking point that John McCain had lied in an ad about Barack Obama's record on a sex education bill in the Illinois state Senate.
McCain's ad says Barack Obama's "one accomplishment" as a state senator was "legislation to teach ‘comprehensive sex education' to kindergarteners."
Toobin listed it among several "outright falsehoods" from McCain, and Borger claimed the Obama-backed bill was "about teaching children to recognize sexual predators."
The Obama camp and many media have repeated the line that the bill was only about protecting kids from sexual predators. But the McCain ad is correct. The bill, SB 99,is a radical expansion of sex education, ratcheting down the initiation age from sixth grade to kindergarten, and eliminating moral language that supports marriage and abstinence. Only a tiny portion of the bill addresses how kids can be protected from unwanted sexual advances.
So what do you do if you're reporting on an MSNBC interview with McCain adviser Carly Fiorina in which she states that neither of the major party presidential candidates nor their vice presidential running mates qualify to run a major corporation? If you're the folks at CNNPolitics.com, you headline the story "McCain adviser Fiorina: Palin not ready to run a corporation."
The MSNBC story, "If she can't run a major company..." cites a recent Fiorina radio interview in which she was asked if Sarah Palin has the experience to run a major company like Hewlett-Packard, which Fiorina formerly served as CEO:
Gov. Sarah Palin is so popular that the demand for McCain-Palin paraphernalia has "hijack[ed]" the Web site for Cafepress.com, according to the headline writers at CNN.com.:
Palin 'phenomenon' hijacks online sales
(CNN) -- For the first time since the start of the election, merchandise for John McCain's campaign rivals sales of Barack Obama gear at CafePress, an online store specializing in user-generated T-shirts.
The store saw a huge spike in sales on the day McCain announced Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as his vice presidential pick, and McCain sales have been on the rise ever since.
"It was basically like Black Friday in retail terms," said Amy Maniatis, vice president of marketing for CafePress.
The campaign handlers for Barack Obama have obviously decided that there will be no more failed jokes ala Kerry's "stupid kids get stuck in Iraq" faux pas of the 2006 campaign. Barack apparently blew his chance for ostensible extemporaneous elocution after his failed "lip stick on a pig" joke went over like a lead balloon last week. According to CNN, Obama is suddenly speaking from a teleprompter at outdoor campaign rallies.
One can just imagine how McCain would be eviscerated by the press if he had to start using a teleprompter at the average campaign stop. What sort of "senility" jokes would the press be filled with at that point? One can just guess that this news will be greeted with a yawn even though it seems to be a pretty strong curtailment of Obama's freedom to speak extemporaneously on the stump.
On CNN's American Morning today, White House correspondent Suzanne Malveaux reported on Barack Obama's campaigning in Virginia. Afterwards, anchor Kiran Chetry had a question:
CHETRY: All right. And Suzanne, what's on tap for the campaign today? And please tell me it's not lipstick again.
MALVEAUX: Let's hope not. He's going to be in Norfolk, Virginia. That is in southeast Virginia, and it's home to the world's largest Naval base. It's one of the most competitive areas that the Democrats and Republicans are fighting over. It's a critical piece of property, piece of land there with folks in Virginia, and they want those voters.
[Update, 3:05 pm: Transcript of Toobin's remarks added below.]
For two straight days, CNN repeated liberal rumors about Republican vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin’s political record – rumors that had already been debunked by their own correspondents, as well as the respected FactCheck.org, a group led by former CNN reporter Brooks Jackson.
During Monday evening’s Election Center program, CNN’s senior legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin claimed that Palin "wants to ban all abortions," despite a September 2 report by his own network which included a quote from the Alaska governor that she is "pro-life... [w]ith the exception of a doctor's determination that the mother's life would end if the pregnancy continued." Toobin also claimed that Palin "wants to treat -- to have creationism taught in public schools." This isn’t the entire story. A FactCheck.org report released on Monday, which aimed to refute "dubious Internet postings and mass e-mail messages making claims about McCain's running mate," clarified that Palin "supports teaching creationism alongside evolution, though she has not actively pursued such a policy as governor."
The media's ham-handed attempts at grasping and accurately reporting religious belief are have only been magnified recently in light of the MSM's obsession with Gov. Sarah Palin's prior attendance at Pentecostal churches.
Some Pentecostals from Assembly of God also believe in "faith healing" and the "end times" -- a violent upheaval that they believe will deliver Jesus Christ's second coming.
"Our basic belief is that God is God and he knows where history is going and he has a purposeful plan and within the middle of that plan we live in an environment in our world where certain events would take place," says McGraw. "Sarah wasn't taught to look for one particular sign -- a cataclysmic sign. She knew as every Christian does ... that God is sovereign and he is in control."
The language above seems to paint Pentecostals as on the fringe of Christianity, and Kaye's use of dismissive quote marks for "faith healing" and "end times" helps to communicate that to the reader. But the concept of the end times is not a wacky, outside-the-mainstream of Christianity belief. It's essential to the eschatology of all orthodox Christian denominations and rooted in Christian Scripture (from Theopedia.com):
At long last, the soon-to-be erstwhile Democratic mayor of Detroit, Kwame Kilpatrick, pleaded guilty and will resign as mayor. The Detroit Free Press reports all of the salacious details--except the singular detail that Kilpatrick is a Democrat.
In a courtroom this morning, Kilpatrick pleaded guilty to two felony counts of obstructing justice by committing perjury. He will spend four months in jail, pay up to $1 million in restitution, and serve five years' probation. [...]
In case traditional news outlets "forget" to tell you, Uncle Sam announced this morning that second-quarter Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth was revised sharply upward to 3.3% from the late July's advance estimate of 1.9%.
Dude, where's my recession?
Y'know, the recession that Barack Obama claimed we "almost certainly in" back in mid-July?
Believe it or not, there are supposedly legitimate economists out there who, despite today's news, still insist that we are in a recession -- right now! -- and have been for some time. And of course, reporters are finding them, and quoting them.
Earlier this week, when it was clear that a significant upward GDP revision was in the works, "journalists" at MarketWatch and CNNMoney.com, with the help of their "experts," did everything they could to downplay its impending significance. One even called it a "mirage."
Just in time for Barack Obama's Greco-Roman Oration tomorrow night, two significant economic reports have gone or are about to go in a positive direction:
Earlier Wednesday, the Census Bureau reported that durable goods orders increased 1.3% during July, repeating June's performance; shipments of durables were up 2.5%; and unfilled orders were at their highest level since 1992. There are exceptions, but these companies are generally very busy.
Thursday morning, the pundits are predicting that second quarter Gross Domestic Product, originally estimated at an annualized 1.9%, will be significantly revised upward. Predictions that GDP will come in at 2.7% are at Reuters, Briefing.com via CNN, and MarketWatch. If you go to the links, especially the second and third, you will detect the distinct aroma of sour grapes; the headlines found there are "The economic growth mirage" and "Big revision in GDP won't mean much," respectively.
Don't count on these statistics to get much positive traditional media play while the Obama coronation is in progress.
But there's one other number that's even worse for the everyone's-a-victim crowd than those just noted. It is one that I can almost guarantee will remain invisible during tomorrow's festivities.
CNN is suddenly backtracking from a report it made early Sunday evening concerning Hillary Clinton releasing her delegates to Barack Obama at the Democratic National Convention Wednesday.
During the 6PM EDT installment of "CNN Newsroom," Rick Sanchez announced the "breaking news" that was later posted at the network's website under the headline "Clinton to Release Her Delegates to Obama."
Yet, just moments ago, that headline was changed to "Clinton Likely to Release Her Delegates to Obama," with alterations inside the opening paragraph.
CNN has just released what it claims to be the "first national poll conducted after Barack Obama publicly named Joe Biden as his running mate," and the news isn't good for those heading to Denver to watch what likely will be the official nomination of the junior senator from Illinois.
In fact, according to this poll conducted Saturday and Sunday after Obama's announcement, the race is now all tied up.
As reported at CNN.com moments ago, "This looks like a step backward for Obama, who had a 51 to 44 percent advantage last month" (emphasis added throughout, photo courtesy Getty Images):
So, why did the Old Media seem to miss the John Edwards Love Affair story? Well, maybe it was because the Old Media hadn't deigned to decide for us that it was "news" until after the New Media had chewed up and spit out the story for days and days? Apparently, that is what David Carr of The New York Times thinks, anyway. In an interview with CNN he alludes to the fact that he is used to the Old Media deciding when something is officially "news" and that maybe he and his contemporary journalists have lost that level of control they were used to enjoying. This fall from grace is being seen most readily in the Edwards story that the New Media had digested for a week before the Old Media got to it
The CNN piece cites many factors from the fact that the Old Media has a disdain for National Enquirer stories to a claim that the Old Media is reticent to exploit sex stories. The former is a sensible precaution and the later an outright laugher. After all, the Old Media had no problem whatsoever in exploiting the rumors of George H.W. Bush's affair, Newt Gingrich's affair, Newt's successor to be Bob Livingston’s affair, the John McCain affair story, Larry Craig's restroom stall story, or Mark Foley's Page Scandal... but then again, THOSE are Republican sex scandals. The same delicacy the Old Media handles sex stories with as claimed by CNN does not exist for those sorts of stories.
The Obama campaign appears to have come up with a neat way to deflect criticism of the presumptive Democrat presidential nominee's failure to visit wounded American troops while visiting Germany last month: have wife Michelle sponsor a meeting with military families.
As CNN.com reported Monday (emphasis added): "Days after a television spot from John McCain’s campaign suggested Barack Obama did not hold enough respect for members of the military, the presumptive Democratic nominee’s campaign announced Monday that Michelle Obama will host a roundtable discussion with military spouses highlighting the launch of a military families advisory group."
UPDATE AT END OF POST: OBAMA MISSES THE FOLLOWING TOWN HALL MEETING FOR A VACATION AND FUNDRAISER IN HAWAII!
I guess the campaign felt this was a better idea than the junior senator from Illinois attending a presidential town hall meeting to be held next Monday in Fort Hood, Texas, the largest active-duty military installation in the country (photo courtesy NY Daily News). As the Dallas Morning News reported Monday, much like in July when he couldn't find the time to visit our wounded soldiers at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany, Obama is also too busy to meet with families at Fort Hood (emphasis added):
Apparently, CNN decided that they didn't have enough video of rioting in their recent story on unrest in Belgrade, Serbia, so they decided to add in footage of rioting in Budapest to sexy up the story. I have to say, if the Kosovars intend to make the cut with CNN in the future, they'd better start rioting to the satisfaction of CNN's video editors. Either that, or CNN can start showing us all some truthful video with their stories. Whatever the case, CNN's misstep doesn’t just make them look bad, it makes all Americans look bad.
On July 30, CNN aired a report in their international news titled "Serb Ultranationalists Rally" in which footage of riots in two different cities and two different countries were edited together to represent the unrest in Kosovo. Serbian TV was a bit mystified by this embellishment, and rightfully so. RTS asserted that since CNN didn't have violent enough footage for their riots story, they "resorted to their favorite Hollywood trick" of "montaging and pasting together the sequences from Budapest and Belgrade protests" to accompany the story. (See foreign language report from Serbian RTS TV)
Apparently complacent about criticism from the Tennessee Center for Policy Research that his family's energy use at his Nashville home is more than 19 times greater than the average American household's, Al Gore has committed conspicious energy consumption once again.
In Washington D.C. Thursday to deliver yet another speech warning Americans about global warming caused, Gore believes, by excessive use of fossil fuels, Gore handed yet more evidence to critics who believe he's a hypocrite.
He did so by traveling to his speech in what almost certainly was an unnecessary entourage of three luxury gas-guzzling vehicles -- two Lincoln Town Cars and a Surburban SUV -- one of which was kept idling outside for twenty minutes, apparently to keep the interior cool for the driver, Mrs. Gore and the Gores' adult daughter.
Covering the recent decision by a synod of bishops in the Anglican Church to permit the ordination of female bishops, CNN.com repeatedly alluded to "traditionalist" opposition to women holding episcopal office, but failed to find one such spokesman for traditionalists to defend the theology behind the position. (h/t Damian G. of Conservathink)
Indeed, the one traditionalist cited in the article had a middle-ground position, saying he had no problem with female bishops, so long as conservative Anglicans could have an out of sorts. Of course that compromise was smacked down in another synod vote:
The picture alone of a weak little girl was enough to cause the heart of anyone who viewed the CNN.com home page earlier today to ache. What proof do they have that the drought in West Timor is due to climate change? Some unnamed aid officials:
Maria is fighting to live, wasting away in her remote village where aid officials say climate change has brought on a severe drought in recent years. It's nearly impossible for residents to live off the land like they have for generations.
We've taken notice that Iraq is suddenly out of the news now that things are consistently going so well for U.S. forces there. Well, since CNN can't find much bad to talk about in Iraq they've finally found some "bad" news they can use as a needle to stick in the Bush Administration's collective eye. In Coalition troop deaths in Afghanistan surpass Iraq, CNN has discovered that they can make a body bag contest out of casualties between Iraq and Afghanistan. Oh, joy!
For the second month in a row, U.S. and allied troop deaths in the Afghan war have surpassed those in Iraq, according to official figures tallied by CNN... In June, 46 foreign troops died in Afghanistan and 31 troops died in Iraq. In May, 23 foreign troops died in Afghanistan and 21 died in Iraq.
Stop the presses! And, did you notice that now they are adding foreign troops up because they can't get enough American deaths to report? Can you remember the last time the American press was worried about the casualties among our foreign coalition?
If an elected official in the United States, at any level, promises to "rip apart" six year old rape victims, then describe in vivid detail how their lives would be ruined, one would assume such a statement would lead the news. But it did not.
Following up on D.S. Hubes post on the local media coverage, Massachusetts State Representative James Fagan (D) voiced his opposition to Jessica’s law requiring stiff mandatory sentences to child rapists. As a defense attorney, Fagan promised if such a law were in place and victims assume the stand "I’m gonna rip them apart." Fagan continued "I’m going to make sure that the rest of their life is ruined, that when they’re 8 years old, they throw up; when they’re 12 years old, they won’t sleep; when they’re 19 years old, they’ll have nightmares and they’ll never have a relationship with anybody."
On CNN's AC-360 blog, Anderson Cooper's senior producer Barclay Palmer conflated Karl Rove's critique of Barack Obama and Don Imus's latest racial radio flap into a racial knife fight: "anyone who thinks that Obama’s presumptive victory in the Democratic primary means we’re in a post-racial America might want to think again. Race will play the falling knife in this… race. And you can bet your country club membership, we’re just getting started."
How Rove suggesting that Obama is an arrogant country-club elitist puts you in "nappy-headed ho" territory is a mystery outside the liberal media tent. Not only that, but Rove is apparently packing a blade and waving it at Obama's throat. The liberal media apparently plan to spend the next few months breathlessly waiting for every Republican criticism of Obama that can be construed (or misconstrued) as an attack on Obama's blackness. Here's the whole blog post:
PBS's Bonnie Erbe hosts that network's weekly news analysis program, "To the Contrary with Bonnie Erbe," is a weekly columnist for Scripps Howard Newspapers, and blogs at USNews.com.
Erbe called for the impeachment of George Bush in February 2006. Anyone looking through her Scripps Howard archive will conclude that she can't possibly be labeled a conservative ideologue -- which is why her take on the attempt by CNN's John Lewis to make it appear as if both the Obama and McCain campaigns are equally hampered by flip-flops is so compelling.
Here's how "A battle of accused political 'flip-flops'," the CNN report at which Erbe takes umbrage, begins:
Days after both men reversed course on major issues, the presidential campaigns of Sen. Barack Obama and Sen. John McCain spent much of Sunday's talk-show circuit working to ensure accusations of "flip-flopping" don't stick.
Subtle bias towards emphasizing unfavorable economic news and against reporting good economic news is present in many places. I will demonstrate that it's even sometimes in the brief e-mail alerts many people receive.
This alert I received today from CNNMoney demonstrates a long-known (by me) but, until now, unproven point:
But when the Dow closed above 14,000 for the first time on October 1, 2007, here is what that day's CNN alert had to say:
CNN calls this serious news, apparently, but a recent report about a Pew Research poll of "more than 24,000 people in 24 countries" shows that foreigners favor Barack Obama over John McCain for president. Aside from the general "who cares" of it all, why is it news that people who wish the United States ill will would pick the candidate most friendly to their interests to become our president? Shouldn't it be obvious that foreigners would want someone that would favor their views to become the next president of the U.S.? Who would expect a Frenchman or a Swede to pick someone that would least favor a foreigner's point of view on international politics? After all, why would a foreigner want an American president that would strongly advocate for the United States when they themselves are not Americans? Naturally, they'd gravitate to the candidate that seems to represent what Europe wants and not the candidate that would strongly advocate for the U.S.A.
And on top of that, why the heck would an American care what a foreigner thinks about U.S. elections? Yet, in theirs headlined "Poll: Image of US will 'change for the better' with Obama," here is CNN acting as if this is important and perhaps shocking news that Obama has an "enormous" polling advantage among foreigners.