Editor's Note: What follows is a letter that NewsBusters publisher Brent Bozell sent to MSNBC President Phil Griffin early today.
Dear Mr. Griffin,
Last week, in my open letter to you I called for Ed Schultz’s termination. I also called for you to resign as President of MSNBC because you hired Ed Schultz. Today, I have yet another reason you should step down - one which some might argue is even more compelling than Schultz. His name is Al Sharpton.
Are left-wing hatemongers like Ed Schultz sullying the NBC brand? How do legitimate, albeit left-leaning, journalists like Matt Lauer or Tom Brokaw feel about NBCUniversal's cable news outlet, Fox News's Sean Hannity wondered during last night's "Media Mash" segment with NewsBusters publisher Brent Bozell.
"You have to wonder about that. When you think of Tom Brokaw, when you think of the late Tim Russert... these are liberals... but there was almost always a level of civility, and although you could continue disagreeing with one another, it was an honest disagreement," Bozell noted. Unfortunately, "radicals that far exceed anything Tom Brokaw ever did" dominate on MSNBC. [see video below]
Your network, working on marching orders from Media Matters, is on a mission to take Rush Limbaugh off the air. Far from being an independent journalistic enterprise, MSNBC is the very essence of a political lapdog of the far left.
Just last night on MSNBC, Ed Schultz, Al Sharpton, and Lawrence O’Donnell all devoted time on their programs attacking Rush. In each case, they grabbed at thin air looking, looking, looking for the opportunity shamelessly to keep the story alive.
Andrea Mitchell is no newbie to journalism. In fact, in 2010, she was given the Taishoff Award for Excellence in Broadcast Journalism by the National Press Foundation. She's in good company with Brit Hume and the late Tim Russert among previous recipients of the award. But alas, the MSNBC anchor displayed no "excellence in journalism" with her brief, softball interview today with Robin Morgan of the liberal Women's Media Center.
Mitchell brought Morgan on to discuss her group's petition drive to request the FCC to ban Rush Limbaugh from the airwaves. The WMC's argument is that Limbaugh engages in "hate speech" which is not in the "public interest" and hence cause to push him off the air. Below the page break I've listed in bullet points the questions Mitchell posed to Morgan, which, as you can see, are all softballs meant to advance Morgan's talking points:
All last week the knights in shining armor at MSNBC did their level best to rescue the fair damsels of the realm from the vile "War on Women" waged by the vicious ogres of the Right, you know, like Rush Limbaugh and Rick Santorum. But in the midst of hyping Women's History Month and International Women's Day (March 8), the liberal network failed to highlight a real story of women's oppression: a Pakistani-Austrian woman's tale of death threats and beatings at the hands of her reactionary Muslim mother.
What's more, this story, entitled "Why My Mother Wants Me Dead," was published at none other than The Daily Beast, a site whose writers and editors frequently appear on MSNBC programming.
A couple of years ago, “comedian” Louis CK “joked” on the Opie and Anthony radio show about Palin coming to the Republican convention “holding a baby that just came out of her f-ing, disgusting [C-word], her f-ing retard-making [C-word].”
Last night, I emailed letters to all the female anchors and on air TV correspondents at all broadcast and cable broadcast networks, numbering more than 60, asking them if they “stand behind the association's decision to give Louis C.K. an endorsement and give him the honor of sharing the stage with the President of the United States given his vile remarks – never even apologizing or even acknowledging he was wrong?”
Earlier today, Van Susteren announced on her blog that she will not be attending the Radio and Television Correspondents Association Dinner hosted in DC every year. This dinner is being headlined by liberal comedian Louis C.K. who has said a number of offensive statements about Sarah Palin and other women that are far in excess of anything ever said by Rush Limbaugh on the air. Update below: C.K. has pulled out of the dinner
"Another pig….and a media association has hired the pig, Louis C.K., to be their headliner for the big media dinner? Really?" Van Susteren wrote. Full blog post is quoted below the break:
Andrew Breitbart, the 43-year-old conservative media entrepreneur who was laid to rest this week after experiencing a sudden heart attack, rose from an unknown to one of the leaders of the conservative movement in just a few short years. I am proud to have called him a friend.
The swiftness of his rise and his popularity among conservatives, provide a lesson for anyone wishing to understand how to win in the game of politics and media in the 21st Century.
Updated at bottom of post | This morning, NewsBusters publisher and Media Research Center founder Brent Bozell sent letters to Jay Farner and David Friend, the presidents of Quicken Loans and Carbonite, respectively, addressing the hypocrisy of how their companies pulled out of the Rush Limbaugh program over comments for which the conservative talker has since apologized, even as they continue to advertise on the programs of hateful left-wing radio hosts.
For example, Carbonite continues to advertise on Ed Schultz's radio program, although he maliciously slammed conservative author Laura Ingraham in May 2011 as a "right-wing slut" and "a talk slut."
I'm sorry Rush Limbaugh called 30-year-old Georgetown law student Sandra Fluke a "slut." She's really just another professional femme-a-gogue helping to manufacture a false narrative about the GOP "war on women." I'm sorry the civility police now have an opening to demonize the entire right based on one radio comment — because it's the progressive left in this country that has viciously and systematically slimed female conservatives for their beliefs.
We have the well-worn battle scars to prove it. And no, we don't need coddling phone calls from the pandering president of the United States to convince us to stand up and fight.
Continuing her network's anti-Limbaugh drumbeat today, MSNBC's Tamron Hall interviewed a little-known feminist activist by the name of Shaunna Thomas of the equally unfamiliar group UltraViolet, which is campaigning to deprive Rush Limbaugh of all of his sponsors. UltraViolet, apparently, is famous for pushing the specious and ultimately discredited claims about a supposed anti-abortion clinic bias by the iPhone 4S's speech recognition software.
To her credit, Hall noted that liberals like Bill Maher have said equally if not more offensive things than Limbaugh and not been called out on it, citing a tweet by none other than former White House aide Austan Goolsbee. "What do you make of this back and forth of, well he did it, but so did he?"
In a March 5 post in which she deemed Rush Limbaugh's Saturday apology to Sandra Fluke as insufficient to be rewarded by her holiness, Washington Post "On Faith" feature editor Sally Quinn pounded her electronic pulpit yesterday, condemning Rush's audience for being complicit in Limbaugh's sin of daring to bombastically criticize the Left (emphases mine):
NBC White House correspondent Chuck Todd gave an interview to Dylan Byers of Politico where he suggested the media's coverage of politics is often wrong: "we incorrectly cover American politics 60 percent of the time."
What? What would explain this tilt? Todd insists there hasn't been liberal/ideological bias for a long time, but "we don't understand their day-to-day lives" outside the New York-DC bubble, and look down at their church-going and WalMart-shopping:
Giving her two cents on the whole Limbaugh/Fluke row today, media strategist Elizabeth Blackney trashed Democrats like Debbie Wasserman Schultz, saying it's "just as cynical as Rush's appalling commentary" for Democrats to "raise money on the backs of women."
Blackney, who "recently completed a 40 Day Hunger Strike in order to draw attention to the unprecedented sexual and gender based violence ongoing in Congo," according to her Politico.com bio, lamented that:
Andrew Breitbart, the conservative blogger and publisher who died suddenly yesterday was going to really shake up the self-described mainstream media according to a report that he was in talks with CNN to co-host a television show with Anthony Weiner, the disgraced liberal Democratic congressman who famously sent pictures of his underwear-clad genitals to women on the internet.
The idea certainly would not have been out of the realm of possibility for either CNN or Breitbart; the cable network famously invited another disgraced Democratic politician, former New York governor Elliott Spitzer, to co-host a program with moderate conservative columnist Kathleen Parker. Bringing in a real conservative who could hold his own and coherently state conservative beliefs would certainly have been an improvement. The Parker-Spitzer show was a short-lived affair which died soon after it was launched.
As violent, deadly demonstrations have broken out in Afghanistan following the recent accidental burning of Korans, it's interesting to look back nearly three years ago when the U.S. military burned a shipment of Holy Bibles written in the Pashto and Dari languages. The military destroyed the Bibles rather than ship them back stateside apparently out of fear the American church that sent them would just try shipping them back through other channels to Afghanistan.
The al-Jazeera network was involved in the breaking of the story, but a search of Nexis found no stories from the time by the Washington Post or New York Times nor the ABC, CBS, or NBC networks about the disposal of the Christian holy texts.
Appearing on the February 23 Hannity on Fox News for the weekly Media Mash segment, Media Research Center president Brent Bozell exposed the media attempts to downplay high gas prices and refusal to hold President Obama accountable for the rising energy costs.
"Why is it, Brent, do you think the media is not so interested" in noting skyrocketing gas prices under President Obama's watch, substitute host Liz Cheney asked [video embedded below page break].
Pat Buchanan might have seen the end of the line coming at MSNBC when last month network president Phil Griffin commented on his latest book, "Suicide of a Superpower," by saying, "I don't think the ideas that (Buchanan) put forth are appropriate for the national dialogue, much less on MSNBC."
When Buchanan was let go last week after 10 years as a commentator on the network, no one was surprised.
When it comes to culturally liberal policy positions, MSNBC has been repeatedly eager to portray conservatives as engaged in a "war on women" with Democrats and the Obama White House being the white knights riding to the defense of damsels in distress everywhere.
But when one program dared to deviate a little from the party line earlier this week to voice concerns about the Obama administration treading on religious liberties, it left a pair of liberal Democratic senators rather irate, reported BuzzFeed late Thursday evening:
Editor's Note: Earlier today, CNN suspended contributor Roland Martin for some tweets he made regarding the David Beckham underwear ad that ran during the Super Bowl. Martin was the target of a pressure campaign from the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD). What follows after the page break is NewsBusters publisher Brent Bozell's statement.
The AP/CBSDC story, filed at 10:33 p.m. Eastern on the website for CBS Radio's new all-news station WNEW, reports on the passage of a strict voter ID law in the Virginia State Senate. As we've noted previously, the Washington Post has reported, uncritically, Virginia Democratic legislators' Jim Crow comparisons, but it appears that CBS News is taking the Washington Post's bias even further (see screen capture below page break):
Editor's Note: What follows is a statement released this morning by NewsBusters publisher and Media Research Center (MRC) president Brent Bozell.
Come on, Tell The Truth, Tom! What really irks you is not that you're part of a presidential ad; it's that you're part of a Republican candidate's ad. You used NBC and your anchor chair as a platform to promote Democratic agendas and delight in Republican setbacks for more than 20 years. And you stood behind that reporting as a fair exercise in journalistic ethics, even when it was far from the truth.
If Tom Brokaw really cared about this kind of bias, he would do something about his own network and especially its sister network MSNBC given their outrageous pro-Obama nightly commentary disguised as news.
I wish Republican politicians would have faith in the largely conservative electorate and not behave as though they'll make themselves unelectable unless they pander to Generic Moderate. Who is that guy, anyway? Have you ever met him?
Recently, we've seen a few examples of the liberal narrative's rearing its oppressive head and starkly different reactions to it. The first was Mitt Romney's reportedly telling The Wall Street Journal that as a wealthy person, he thinks he lacks the credibility to aggressively push tax cuts. Mitt is also looking timid about releasing his tax returns. He needs to fight back — consistently — instead of surrendering to the liberal narrative that success is evil. Mitt should take a lesson from Newt Gingrich on counterpunching against false liberal charges and innuendo.
ABC News's Marianne Gingrich interview has "that awful, awful taint of Rathergate to it," timed as it was "to do the most amount of damage it possibly could to Newt Gingrich's career," NewsBusters publisher Brent Bozell complained in an interview with Washington, D.C. news-talk station WMAL's Morning Majority program.
While Marianne Gingrich may be "entirely honest" in her claim, she is "lashing out at her ex-husband" and her story is an unconfirmable account. "I think it was a mess of a story, I think it hurts the media," the Media Research Center (MRC) founder added. [interview embedded below page break]
So the Democratic National Committee (DNC) gave a walk-through Wednesday for network journalists planning on covering the party's nominating convention this summer in Charlotte.
But while the DNC is trumpeting the convention as "the most open and accessible in history," the Charlotte Observer's Mark Washburn complained that the briefing, attended by some 500 journalists, was kept strictly off-the-record. What's more, Washburn notes, when he complained about what he saw as ludicrous ground rules for the briefing, the convention's chief operating officer, Theodore LeCompte snipped that Washburn was "perfectly welcome not to attend":
Yesterday MSNBC's Alex Wagner treated viewers of her noon Eastern Now program to a panel that featured Obama Super PAC staffer Bill Burton. Today the promotion of pro-Obama spin continued with Wagner herself attempting to help DNC chairwoman Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz spin the Obama/Clinton State Department's decision to scrap the Keystone XL pipeline project.
"Is there a concern, though, that this, as he pushes a jobs message that this looks sort of counterintuitive for him to say, 'I know this may create some jobs but I'm not going to, I'm not going to pass it, I'm not going to give the permits'?" the former Center for American Progress staffer asked. [MP3 audio here; video update follows page break]
Even fair-minded liberals, of which there must be a few, should acknowledge that the Saturday-Sunday "blitz" of the Republican presidential candidates by ABC and NBC correspondents looked like a play designed by the left wing of the Democratic Party.
Clearly the questions by ABC's George Stephanopoulos and Diane Sawyer about contraception and same-sex marriage were asked to trap the GOP candidates into delivering sound bites that the Obama re-election campaign could use against the eventual nominee and the party at large. These were the types of accusatory questions that would never be asked of a Democratic president. One would not expect to hear, for example, a question like this to President Obama: "Mr. President, millions of babies have been legally aborted in this country since 1973; how can you so callously dismiss unborn children, many of whom would now be productive, taxpaying citizens, by taking a pro-choice stance on abortion?"