Apparently, Fannie and Freddie are the new Batman and Robin.
At least they seemed more like heroes than villains in a July 6 ABC News story about the troubled housing market. Reporter Rich Blake gave the government sponsored enterprises (GSEs) Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac credit for "propping up" the flailing housing sector:
"As perplexing and disturbing as this economic brainteaser may seem, the housing sector would be in even worse shape if not for those twin government sponsored enterprises, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, both in government conservatorship and bleeding assets," Blake wrote.
Saturday demonstrated a staggering disparity in how media view those involved in the Gulf Coast oil spill cleanup.
While news outlets heaped scorn upon beleaguered BP CEO Tony Hayward for attending a yacht race in England Saturday, there was no such anger shown towards President Obama and Vice President Biden for going golfing.
In fact, as this Reuters piece illustrated, despite what our Commander-in-Chief was doing, it was perfectly acceptable for his administration to criticize Hayward's recreational exploits on his day off (h/t Hot Air headlines):
(Tony) Rezko is a central figure in the government's conspiracy case. His relationship with Obama was highlighted this week when Joseph Aramanda, the owner of a Chicago pizza business, took the stand to detail how Rezko arranged for him to receive a $250,000 "finder's fee" from a state teacher's pension system investment deal, and then instructed him to use the money to make a $10,000 contribution to Obama's presidential campaign. Prosecutors say that Aramanda never performed any work on the deal, and that most of the money was funneled to Rezko, who used it to pay off debts.
Aramanda may still be involved in pizza, but his primary gig now would appear to be the executive Federal position he currently holds. As noted in a Chicago Tribune piece earlier this week:
These days Joseph Aramanda manages a U.S. Census Bureau Chicago-area office and its 1,000 employees. But it was in a different capacity that he showed up for the government Tuesday at the Dirksen U.S. Courthouse — witness in the corruption trial of former Gov. Rod Blagojevich.
Quite a coincidence, huh? Aramanda, testifying with an immunity deal after his $10,000 funny-money gift to The Anointed One, just happens to land a more than decent Federal job. How'd he get it? According to the Associated Press:
In today's "Silence of the Cams" segment, an ABC reporter was hassled Thursday for trying to cover the Gulf Coast oil spill from an Alabama beach.
According to an article published at ABCNews.com, "Reporting is often about access, but journalists along the Gulf Coast covering the BP oil spill have had some trouble getting it."
The piece continued, "As BP faces more pressure from the government and from its own shareholders unhappy with the company's falling stock price, it seems to be clamping down on who can talk to reporters" (video follows with more quotes from the article and commentary):
Reporter Devin Dwyer’s May 25 ABCNews.com profile of Andrew Young reported the civil rights leader’s derisive remarks against the Tea Party without giving the movement a chance to defend itself.
Despite the liberal activist’s claim that “ethno-centrism runs so deep in America” and that the Tea Party is “motivated by a nativism,” at no point in the piece did Dwyer include a response to the charges.
Instead, Dwyer devoted the rest of the piece to praising the “civil rights legend” for his myriad achievements.
“Young, who has spent a lifetime fighting to change American society for the better, received the Presidential Medal of Freedom for his decades-long career in public service, which included working as an aide to Martin Luther King Jr., serving as a Democratic congressman from Georgia, and later becoming U.N. ambassador and mayor of Atlanta,” gushed Dwyer.
Strictly as a public service, the mainstream media have long pointed out that those pesky folks who question where Barack Obama was born are your typical knuckle-dragging, mouth-breathing Neanderthals. You know, the type of know-nothings who attend Tea Parties and other such sinister gatherings.
So those deep thinkers must be stunned by the findings of the latest ABC News/Washington Post poll, which finds "about a third of so-called 'birthers' nonetheless approve of Obama's work in office and express a favorable opinion of him personally." Not only that, but as shown in the accompanying charts and questionnaire on ABC News's Web site, "15 percent of Democrats say they think Obama was born elsewhere, as do 12 percent of liberals."
Democrats and liberals are birthers? Whenever life became just too frustrating for Chester A. Riley, he'd exasperatingly wail, "What a revoltin' development this is!" The talking heads at MSNBC, CNN and other bastions of liberal thought must share that feeling today.
The Pentagon rescinded the invitation of evangelist Franklin Graham to speak at its May 6 National Day of Prayer event because of complaints about his previous comments about Islam.
The Military Religious Freedom Foundation expressed its concern over Graham's involvement with the event in an April 19 letter sent to Secretary of Defense Robert Gates. MRFF's complaint about Graham, the son of Rev. Billy Graham, focused on remarks he made after 9/11 in which he called Islam "wicked" and "evil" and his lack of apology for those words.
Col. Tom Collins, an Army spokesman, told ABC News on April 22, "This Army honors all faiths and tries to inculcate our soldiers and work force with an appreciation of all faiths and his past comments just were not appropriate for this venue."
Just another sign that the media just don't get religion. Here's the ABCNews.com headline for an April 4 story on President Obama's attendance of Easter Sunday service at Allen Chapel AME Church in Southeast D.C.:
Of course, the term Easter Mass would connote a Catholic liturgical celebration, but the African Methodist Episcopal Church (AME) is a thoroughly Protestant denomination, as its articles of faith Web page makes clear.
An article on ABCNews.com aggressively touted fears by the liberal Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) that prominent conservative are spreading hate. The headline for the March 3 piece by Anna Schecter screamed, "Dobbs, Beck, Palin, Bachmann Share Blame For Rise in Right-Wing Extremism, Says Activist Group."
Schecter interviewed SPLC director Mark Potok and repeated, "Potok said he blames some public personalities and conservative politicians for inciting fear." The ABC News author also fretted about tea party extremism: "Potok said one of the main fears is that these radical groups are infiltrating mainstream groups like the Tea Party movement because of cross pollination of individuals who attend radical group meetings and more mainstream gatherings."
The mood at the Conservative Political Action Conference gathering -- which continues into the weekend in Washington -- is decidedly more upbeat than a year ago. And the Bush name, not to mention the (maybe more popular) Cheney one, is back.
Yet the energy fueling the gathering remains of a shapeless, sometimes dangerous variety.
Readers may reasonably have expected examples of this dangerous energy to follow. Klein goes on:
From the rousing ovations for primary challengers, to a speaker referencing President Obama’s past drug use and deriding homosexuality, to the endless teleprompter jokes (only some of them read off teleprompters), to the general motivating anger that has brought the crowd together -- the big tent isn’t exactly pitching itself.
Vice President Joseph Biden's very public wearing of ashes, a Lenten practice for Catholics, on Wednesday led to several befuddled reactions from the mainstream media. Sky News's Kay Burley had to apologize after confusing the ashen mark for an injury. More egregiously, ABC News's Karen Travers omitted the past controversy over his support for legalized abortion, and portrayed him as a devout Catholic.
The Vice President bore the ashes on his forehead as he introduced President Obama at a White House event celebrating the one-year anniversary of the so-called Recovery Act. Burley asked Greg Milam, Sky News's US correspondent, about the mark as they monitored Biden's remarks: "What's happened to his head? I'm sure that's what everybody's asking at home." After a short pause, Milam replied, "Yes, I don't know. It's a simple answer. Maybe we'll get a chance to find out a little later." Burley then remarked, "It looks like he walked into a door, doesn't it? I'm sure that's one of the questions that the networks will be asking him." (video clip above is from Thursday's Morning Joe on MSNBC; audio available here).
Twelve images newly released by the government of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorists' attacks on the World Trade Center provide a fresh look at the tragedy and its impact on New York City...The latest release follows Monday's publication of other newly released photos first obtained by ABC News from the federal agency investigating the buildings' collapse.
The website has made available a slide show of these pictures, as well as a video montage (embedded below the fold):
Nobody is happier to oblige than ABC News. On Jan. 8, “World News” anchor Diane Sawyer and weatherman Sam Champion worried that the cold weather engulfing much of the world just may be the result of climate change.
Ever since President Obama took office with his merry band of Democrats controlling both chambers of Congress, the media began reporting high unemployment in the most positive light they could find.
NewsBusters exposed one such trick by Newsweek on December 10 that found a silver lining for unemployed dads to reconnect with their children. ABC News posted a column on their website Thursday that advanced the cause even further: now people who still have jobs are hoping to get laid off.
Such was the case made by one Michelle Goodman in a piece cutely titled "All I Want For Christmas is a Layoff." The premise for this bizarre headline was that many Americans began to realize they were working for "slave wages" in jobs that were far too stressful, so perhaps the recession offered a chance to start over.
According to Goodman, the mental effects of remaining on a difficult job could make the unemployment line look a bit more attractive:
The war on Christmas rages on, and nowhere more intensely than on the "kill-joy front." You know it: the predictable but still brutal attacks from those who say your eggnog and candy canes, the tree near your fireplace and even your favorite myths, stories and carols hide secret dangers to emotional and physical wellbeing.
But at least one public health expert is striking a blow for traditionalists by roundly mocking kill-joy tactics by aiming right at the personification of the season.
On Dec 16, an Associated Press article reported a "light-hearted" study conducted by Australian Nathan Grills of Monash University, which was published in the online Christmas edition of the British Medical Journal. Grills' conclusion: Santa Claus is a public health menace.
Grills' characterized the jolly old elf as a "reckless role model" for children, citing his "frequent cookie snacks, occasional cigars and refusal to don a helmet during ‘extreme sports such as roof surfing and chimney jumping,'" according to the AP.
"Unemployed, Underemployed Look to Jobs Summit for Help" is posted on ABC News's Web site today. Authored by senior Washington correspondent John Cochran, the piece is notable in that nothing in it supports the headline. Cochran writes:
Boosting confidence is at the top of President Obama's list at the Jobs Summit he is scheduled to host on Thursday. The invitation list includes business leaders, mayors, academics, and experts from the green jobs sector.
They will consider many proposals to boost the economy including:
What's $100 million of taxpayer money between a few U.S. Senators?
After reports surfaced of $100 million for Louisiana was added to the Senate's health care reform legislation, originally from ABC News, and subsequently commented upon by prominent lefties, like U.S. News and World Report's Bonnie Erbe as my colleague Noel Sheppard pointed out, Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., took the Senate floor on Nov. 21 to announce she would vote in favor to proceed forward with the Senate Democratic leadership's bill.
She also responded to allegations that $100 million earmarked for the Louisiana was added to that legislation to sway her vote. She referred to the likes of ABC News correspondent Jonathan Karl and Erbe as "very partisan Republican bloggers."
"I know that might time is up, but I would like to ask personal privilege for just one more minute to address an issue that has come up unfortunately in the last 24 hours by some very partisan Republican bloggers so I need to respond I think and will do so now," Landrieu said. "One of the provisions in the framework of this bill that I've just decided to move on to debate has to do with fixing a very difficult situation that Louisiana is facing and any other state that might have a catastrophic disaster - let's hope they don't - like we did in 2005."
That's right. In a four page report from ABC News titled, "Tens of Thousands Celebrate 20th Anniversary of Berlin Wall's Collapse," Ronald Reagan is not even mentioned. Not once. And from what I have read, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton didn't mention President Reagan, and neither did President Obama in his taped message. I hope I end up being wrong about that, but I kind of doubt that I am.
Here's news you can virtually guarantee won't get noticed by what remains of the establishment media.
Whole Foods (WFMI) announced its financial results for the quarter ended September 30 yesterday. The quarter closed about 50 days after outraged leftists called for a boycott of the grocery chain to retaliate for a Wall Street Journal op-ed written by CEO John Mackey. In that column, Mackey identified "Eight things we can do to improve health care without adding to the deficit," asserting that:
The last thing our country needs is a massive new health care entitlement that will create hundreds of billions of dollars of new unfunded deficits and move us much closer to a government takeover of our health care system. Instead, we should be trying to achieve reforms by moving in the opposite direction — toward less government control and more individual empowerment.
Well, if there's so much support out there for statist health care, you would think that the Whole Foods boycott dedicated to punishing an opponent would have had a significant impact on the company's most recent quarterly results.
Dede Scozzafava's exit from a major campaign gave readers a perfect glimpse into the double standard applied by the media when it comes to women in politics.
The World Newser, official blog of ABC's World News Tonight, ran an article November 2 lamenting Scozzafava suspending her campaign curtly titled "Message to the GOP - 'Moderates Need Not Apply.'"
The piece quoted three people sympathetic to moderates and a long quote from Scozzafava herself, but only one voice to speak for conservatives. Among the complaints was that conservatives targeted Scozzafava for being a woman instead of focusing on political issues.
Perhaps a report on Scozzafava's lipstick preferences would have been more substantive since that was counted as newsworthy on the World Newser blog just one year ago.
In covering Scozzafava, ABC got right to the point in the second sentence:
With problems for the president in Afghanistan, health care and unemployment, some critics on both the left and right are asking: Is the president essentially "too nice" to make the important decisions?
The National Journal magazine asks in a just-out edition, "Is He Tough Enough?"
"Be decisive," says Tom Tradewell, the commander of the Veterans of Foreign Wars.
Even liberal New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd says the president will have to "break some eggs" to cook up a more perfect union.
None of the people quoted assert the problem is Obama's affability. Rather, the difficulty is the extreme caution he exercises, many times so as to not offend interest groups.
Thanks to Drudge, the Internet will likely be abuzz with the news and video about Irish filmmaker Phelim McAleer's challenge to former Vice President Al Gore over correcting the nine errors found by a British judge in Gore's Oscar-winning "An Inconvenient Truth" documentary.
McAleer is co-producer of Not Evil, Just Wrong, a film challenging the content of Gore's film, that according to Wiki will be premiering on October 18.
When organizers of the Society of Environmental Journalists annual conference tired of McAleer's refusal to back down and acquiesce to Gore's conveniently incomplete answers, they cut off his microphone. The video also shows a meeting official scolding McAleer afterwards for attempting to "monopolize" the floor, telling him that "you got as much as you're going to get."
Gore's answers to McAleer's challenges are so disingenuous that they deserve their own Oscar for dissembling.
Here is a transcript of the exchange, which begins at about the 0:40 mark of the video:
It's standard journalistic practice to put the most important information at the very beginning of an article. For ABC News, it appeared the most pertinent facts about Irene Vilar, a woman who had 15 abortions in 16 years, were her fears about how pro-life activists would receive her new book, "Impossible Motherhood."
ABC reporter Susan Donaldson James perpetuated the myth of raging pro-life activists in her September 21 article about Vilar. Her lede read, "Irene Vilar worries that her self-described ‘abortion addiction' will be misunderstood, twisted by the pro-life movement to deny women the right to choose." Vilar, now a mother of two, told ABC, "no book like this has ever been written. I just imagine the ‘baby killer' and I could be a poster child for that kind of fundamentalism. And there are my little kids in all of that."
Vilar told Donaldson James, "she has already sensed ‘an inkling of hatred," a point noted in the third paragraph. By the fourth, Donaldson James had described the precautions taken by Vilar and her husband.
ABCNews.com republished a bigoted attack against a famously large Christian family on Tuesday. Amelia McDonell-Parry of gossip website TheFrisky.com snarked about Michelle Duggar's latest pregnancy in the post, stating that it "can't be good news...if you're at all concerned about overpopulation." She also hinted that Mrs. Duggar's daughter-in-law was forced to have a baby of her own.