Oprah Winfrey thinks America is going to fall in love with Sarah Palin - as a reality TV star that is.
In a Parade magazine interview scheduled for publication this Sunday, the daytime talk star also said she's not afraid of Palin running for president because she believes in 'the intelligence of the American public":
Near the end of Monday's CBS Early Show, co-host Erica Hill touted a new Parade magazine survey on volunteerism in America: "it indicates America is in the midst of what some are calling a compassion boom." Moments later, the magazine's contributing editor, Emily Listfield, argued: "There's something we call the 'Obama Effect.' People are responding to the President's call to service."
Interestingly, the Parade article made no mention of an "Obama Effect" in explaining why people are volunteering more. Apparently Listfield only felt the need to make that observation when appearing on CBS.
Hill set up Listfield's explanation by noting: "91% in the survey said community service, their community service involvement has gone up over the past 18 months." Hill then asked: "Why are you seeing that increase, and where are you seeing it the most?" A headline on screen read: "Compassion Counts; America's New Volunteering Boom."
World News anchor Diane Sawyer touted her objectivity in an interview for the February 28 Parade magazine. The ABC journalist seriously asserted, "I think no one knows my politics." Continuing to hype her journalistic integrity, she proclaimed, "I hope first of all that everyone knows that the facts are what I care about." (H/T to the MRC's Seton Motley.)
Sawyer also had nice things to say about far-left MSNBC host Rachel Maddow. She enthused, "And I think Rachel Maddow on MSNBC is great television. I love the expression of personality that cable invites." She did throw some praise to the Fox News channel: "I think Roger Ailes, who runs Fox News, is smart as a whip."
Pop singer Elton John is blaming Parade magazine for his remark in Sunday's edition that Jesus Christ was a compassionate, super-intelligent gay man.
"Parade magazine did a kind of a sneaky thing and put it on their website that I said this," John told Chicago's WGN-TV.
According to John, he made the comment "as part of the conversation during the interview," but he apparently didn't think this was going to be included in the article.
"I don't really want to cause a controversy, and I didn't know it was going to be a sidebar to an article that was a great article, and I think Parade have been a bit sneaky about that" (video embedded below the fold with partial transcript, h/t HotAirPundit):
Reporting the lead story on CBS’s Sunday Morning, correspondent Martha Teichner touted a new on-line poll conducted by Parade magazine about religion in America: “nearly a quarter of the respondents call themselves spiritual, not religious. And how about this? Half the people polled say they seldom, if ever, attend religious services.”
One supposed religious expert Teichner spoke with about the poll findings was Barnard College professor and Episcopal priest Randall Balmer, who argued: “And so you have all these religious options out there and we Americans are good consumers.” Teichner asked: “So you’re saying that Americans choose their faith or their spirituality in very much the way they shop a mall.” Balmer replied: “I think they do.” In 2006, Balmer wrote Thy Kingdom Come: How the Religious Right Distorts the Faith and Threatens America.
The Parade magazine cover story about the poll was written by Christine Wicker, author of The Fall of the Evangelical Nation. In addition, Wicker is also a contributing writer for the left-wing blog The Huffington Post. Just days prior to the 2008 presidential election, Wicker authored a post entitled “Evangelical Leaders Using God Like a Hired Gun,” in which she claimed: “They tried branding Obama the anti-Christ. They tried linking him with Islamic terrorists....They’ve used their pulpits to endorse McCain...None of these tactics has brought their errant minions under control. So using God like a hired gun to terrorize the town’s people, the evangelical Christian mullahs are declaring that Obamageddon is at hand.”
When you claim that a grassroots group isn't a grassroots group -- beware of actual grassroots activists.
That's the lesson reporter Sharon Male of Parade Magazine learned when she attacked Patients United Now, the health care project of the free-market Americans for Prosperity Foundation, in the July 12 magazine. Under the headline "Are Grassroots Activists for Real?" she claimed that some "so-called grassroots campaigns" "are actually sophisticated marketing campaigns financed by businesses and special interest groups." Male cited the leftist Public Citizen's accusations of "astroturf" campaigns led by "ultra-wealthy individuals who have little in common with regular Americans," and the reporter bemoaned the fact that "grassroots movements are unregulated."
AFP Foundation let its members know Parade was questioning their existence, and they responded by overwhelming Male and her editor with nearly 5,000 e-mails.
Inflation in Zimbabwe is so bad that in January the government released a $50 billion note — enough to buy two loaves of bread. The unemployment rate has risen to more than 85%. In 2008, Mugabe agreed to hold an election, but it became clear that he would accept the result only if he won. His supporters launched attacks on the opposition, killing 163 and torturing or beating 5000. He ultimately signed a power-sharing agreement with opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai, but since then Mugabe has broken its terms and installed his own people at the head of every ministry. Meanwhile, health conditions have reached crisis levels. More than 3800 Zimbabweans have died from cholera since August.
U.S. link: Although U.S. leaders have called for Mugabe’s resignation, imports from Zimbabwe (primarily nickel and ferrochromium, both used in stainless steel) rose in 2008.
There's actually much more of a U.S. link than that. Unmentioned is the role played by former president Jimmy Carter and other liberals. The Boston Globe reported in December, 1979 that "Carter Administration officials feel they have scored a major foreign policy success in Rhodesia." (Zimbabwe was formerly known as Rhodesia). The purported success was a settlement that set the stage for Mugabe's rise to power. This was months after the Washington Post described him as a "scholarly, avowed Marxist."
Q Can you give us an update on Elian Gonzalez, the boy rescued off the coast of Florida in 1999, then returned to Cuba over the protests of his U.S. relatives?--Mark Larsen, Calhoun, Ga.
A Elian, 15, has been well taken care of by Fidel Castro. His dad was rewarded with a seat in Cuba's national assembly, and the family was given a spacious home. Says Ann Louise Bardach, whose Without Fidel will be published next spring: "Fidel has been known to forget the birthdays of his own children, but never Elian's."
Heartwarming, isn't it? That Fidel is such a sweetheart. So massive is his affection for the young man that he, with the complicity of the U.S. government, forced the terrified boy back to Cuba. Just yesterday, the Associated Press reported that Cubans:
are preoccupied with staying afloat in a sclerotic economy where basics like toilet paper often disappear from store shelves and most people eat meat only a few times each month.
Just in time for Tax Day, the April 13 issue of Parade magazine gave readers left-wing talking points on corporate taxation dressed up as objective reporting.
Contributor Gary Weiss cited two left-wing interest groups and liberal Democratic congressman Richard Neal (D-Mass.) in "Are You Paying For Corporate Fat Cats?" By the end of the article, readers are all but left to seethe an angry "yes!" to that question.
Yet at no point were any economists consulted to point out that corporate tax levies are always ultimately paid by the consumer, who bears the final cost of goods and services produced by the taxed corporations. Taxes are yet one more input cost into final goods and services. So simply put, corporations don't pay taxes, individuals do.
Weiss failed to tackle the political slant of the groups he consulted, which were merely tagged as nonprofits. A quick Google search of the groups makes clear the liberal slant of the organizations.
Chicago Tribune Public Editor Timothy J. McNulty addressed reader discontent over his paper's decision to include in its January 6 paper that week's syndicated Parade magazine insert featuring an outdated cover story and interview with the late Pakistani opposition leader Benazir Bhutto. The story was written and the magazine published days before Bhutto's murder.
McNulty shared some reader e-mails as well as feedback from Tribune editors, making a point to emphasize that the Trib has no control over Parade's editing nor publication schedule and that the Trib did include an editor's note in the paper about the outdated nature of the Parade insert.
But while McNulty did a good job dealing with this particular controversy, he failed to look at a larger issue that the Parade incident fleshes out: the logistical and editorial weaknesses of traditional print media in a 24/7 news cycle, and how that could push more news consumers away from print and towards online media.
Forget the label "old media," the Parade distribution model in this case seems jurassic, woefully outdated given the nature of the modern news cycle, and particularly so if the Sunday magazine wishes to report on anything of global political import rather than say Hollywood fluff.
Because the Trib's handling of the matter seems ham-handed, it also calls into question the relevance and reliability of newspaper print editions in an unforgiving, 24/7 media universe that's becoming more and more dominated by Internet-based media.
(Updated with Monday's Post treatment and a Post warning I missed)
It's quite routine for Sunday newspaper inserts to be published weeks in advance. But what happens when they become outdated? Wouldn't they throw them out and start over? Apparently not. This is the cover of Parade magazine, included in today's Washington Post:
Is Benazir Bhutto America's best hope against al-Qaeda?
'I Am What The Terrorists Most Fear'
An Interview from Pakistan by Gail Sheehy
This interview would still be newsworthy...if Parade (or its newspaper clients like the Post) would merely acknowledge that a death had occurred. But no. Turn inside and the headline is:
As Benazir Bhutto seeks a return to power, Tuesday's election in Pakistan could profoundly affect the fight against terrorism.
'A Wrong Must Be Righted' by Gail Sheehy
The text boxes in the piece add:
Is she America's best hope in the region?
'She will work with anyone to get back into power,' says her own niece
Rosie O'Donnell may have been one of Time's 100 Most Influential People, but now she is 2007's Most Annoying Celebrity. The woman who surprised blacksmiths everywhere when she claimed that fire can't melt steel trounced her competition in the Parade.com poll, getting 44% of the vote, nearly double the amount of second place winner Paris Hilton. Ann Coulter was third.
The woman who admitted that she's so gullible, she's “five seconds away” from joining a cult, also outed herself as a 9/11 Truther and floated several conspiracies. She doesn't think Al Qaeda is a threat--hey, they're mommies and daddies, too!
But she knows who the real bad guys are. She called the US a state sponsor of terror and equated the military with terrorists. She claimed the captured British sailors were really part of a “false flag” operation (“Google it!”), and Ahmadinejad isn't all that bad. Don't worry, she is concerned about terrorists. She thinks the US is robbing 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheik Mohammed of his humanity by labeling him a “terrorist.” (Her sneer quotes, not mine.)
Here are some of the quotes that helped Rosie win her new title (bold mine):
Don't fear the terrorists. They’re mothers and fathers-11-09-07
Author Peter Richmond insisted in his November 4 Parade magazine article, "A Better Way to Travel?" that with Americans stuck in traffic jams and airport security lines and made to suffer through flight delays, another government program could save the day: Amtrak.
"One solution is staring us in the face," Richmond asserted. "Many transportation experts insist that the best answer to transportation gridlock is efficient intercity rail travel."
Richmond boasted that Amtrak commuter numbers were "up for the fifth year in a row, reaching record levels," and in the Northeast, where Amtrak introduced faster trains, the number of commuters between Washington, D.C., and New York City has increased by 9 percent.
“Instead, trade between the two [United States and Venezuela] is soaring, with our exports tripling between 2003 and 2006,” Parade said. “Car sales to Venezuela grew from $9.3 million to $323.9 million, where exports of computers and related accessories rose more than 400% and organic chemicals increased 800%.”
When it comes to major human causes for global warming, one need look no further than mine fires in India and China reports Lyric Wallwork Winik in the August 26 Parade magazine.:
Coal-mine fires in China and India could be huge culprits in global warming. In China alone, up to 200 million tons of coal go up in flames each year—which may be equivalent to America’s total carbon-dioxide emissions from gasoline. India’s mine fires waste up to 10 million tons of coal annually. The pollution has made land in both countries uninhabitable. And the problem is expected to worsen.
Now experts are asking if controlling mine fires in Asia might be a key to reducing global warming. Economist Diana Furchtgott-Roth, for one, argues that it would likely be more efficient than offsets like planting trees or cleaning the ocean.