Once was the time that a dutiful liberal wouldn't dare impugn the downtrodden of Appalachia. Those days are ancient history.
Mike Papantonio, a toxic attorney who co-hosts the "Ring of Fire" radio show with Robert F. Kennedy Jr. and Sam Seder, had this to say Friday on "The Ed Show" about Donald Trump moderating an upcoming GOP debate in Iowa (video and audio clips after page break) --
On his radio show yesterday, Ed Schultz asked Rich Stockwell, executive producer for "The Ed Show" on MSNBC, about their responsibility in covering Occupy protests.
Stockwell's response (audio) -- "Well, look, as journalists we need to cover this story. We need to let people know where it is, what it means, try to understand it, get people on who speak literately about it, and capture the mood of the country." (video and audio clips after page break)
Richard Harris wasn't the only NPR staffer wondering about the backwardness of America on Tuesday's All Things Considered. At the end of a completely supine interview with Barney Frank, anchor Guy Raz asked Frank if he was pleased at how far America had come from its backwardness on gay liberation from when he came out of the closet in the Reagan years.
"I want to ask you about a decision you made in 1987," Raz declared. "You went public to tell people you were gay. That was controversial at the time. Are you heartened at the distance America has come?" Frank said "without question," and said "prejudice" was very close to being eliminated in America:
Leftist radio talker Mike Malloy is really obsessed with executing conservatives. When the Navy SEALs shot Osama bin Laden, he asked when they would "drop in on George Bush," since he "was responsible for a lot more death, innocent death, than bin Laden."
On Tuesday, Malloy wished death on Thanksgiving for Florida Gov. Rick Scott. "And then this miserable son of a bitch has the audacity to go to a homeless shelter? It's a wonder somebody didn't hold his head down in a vat of turkey gravy until he stopped squiggling! He goes to a homeless shelter and talks about how he cares...? Mmm-hmm!" (Listen to the audio)
NPR's Tovia Smith sang the praises of Congressman Barney Frank on Monday's All Things Considered: "Frank has proven both piercing and pithy, zinging one-liners....bold and unabashed." Smith barely included any dissenting voices in her report, playing four sound bites from the staunch liberal and his supporters, versus only two from opponents.
Host Melissa Block noted how Rep. Frank is a "leading liberal voice and one of the first openly gay congressman" in her introduction for the correspondent's report and added that "because his district has just been redrawn, he'd likely face a grueling reelection campaign." Smith continued by stating that "some of the Democratic strongholds he's represented for decades have been replaced by more conservative towns."
Did you know the Pilgrims were not only illegal immigrants, but part of that reviled economic elite known today as the one percent? At least according to Tulane professor and MSNBC contributor Melissa Harris-Perry.
Here's Harris-Perry on Al Sharpton's radio show earlier this week reaching for new heights in revisionism (audio) --
NPR played up a pro-illegal immigration rally at an Alabama church with "strong ties to the civil rights movement" on Tuesday's Morning Edition. Correspondent Tanya Ott of affiliate WBHM trumpeted how "they could hardly pick a more historic place to hold the rally," and highlighted a an advocate for illegal immigrants who likened opponents to the devil.
Fill-in host Linda Wertheimer touted how "pressure is mounting against Alabama's immigration law, known as the toughest in the nation" in her introduction to the journalist's report, and used her "strong ties" phrase as she stated how 3,000 showed up for the rally at the church. Ott specified that the "historic place" which hosted the event is the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, "where, almost a half century ago, a bomb exploded, killing four young black girls."
So much for Democrats heading into 2012 with a full head of steam. Looks like there might be concern among the party faithful that they need to raise their spirits.
Who better for that than Ed Schultz, the closest approximation you'll find on liberal radio and MSNBC to "motivational speaker" Matt Foley as portrayed by the late Chris Farley on "Saturday Night Live." (audio clips after page break)
Ben Smith at Politico reports that in her new book, presidential candidate Michele Bachmann goes out of her way to praise Garrison Keillor, the arrogant liberal host of A Prairie Home Companion on NPR. This is the guy that wrote for Time magazine that "The Republicans are going to be the Party That Canceled the Clean Air Act and Took Hot Lunches from Children, the Orphanage Party of Large White Men Who Feel Uneasy Around Gals."
How would Bachmann process that one? She oozed in the book: “His politics are very different from mine, but I love his gentle, knowing humor. Keillor understands Minnesota, from Lutherans to lutefisk, and his ability to squeeze laughs out of serious-minded midwesterners makes him a legend.”
MSNBC host and radio talker Ed Schultz gave a "What I Read" interview to The Atlantic, but the reading list was less interesting than his complaining about how talk radio is owned by conservatives: "Citadel doesn't do liberal talk radio. Bonneville doesn't do liberal talk radio. The Salem Radio Network, same thing." Of course, he admitted, If Ed Schultz owned 600 radio stations, I can guarantee you Rush Limbaugh or Sean Hannity or any other right-wing hack job would not be on my stations. But until liberals go out and buy signals, you're not going to get a lot of liberal talk radio."
Then Schultz admitted where liberal radio is located. It's at the left end of the dial. "I don't buy that there are more conservative listeners than liberal listeners. A lot of the liberal listeners are listening to NPR. In Washington or New York City, the NPR station has huge listenership. That's where most of the liberal audience is and that's who we, the commercial liberal format, have to peel away listeners from. This industry is ideologically-driven. That's the culture of it."
Listening to liberal talk radio is sometimes like just listening to the world being turned upside down. Liberal hosts make claims that are demonstrably ridiculous, and expect listeners to lap it up.
Case in point: Thom Hartmann praised the Occupy Wall Street protesters for changing the media conversation. He claimed that ever since Reagan was elected, the media has forbidden any discussion of the maldistribution of wealth, as if the words "Decade of Greed" weren't a media favorite, as if the "three million homeless" weren't routinely on the lips of liberal media personalities:
Bill Clinton appeared on Tuesday morning on NBC and MSNBC to promote his latest book, and neither asked the man – who paid an $850,000 settlement to Paula Jones and surrendered his law license for false testimony – to comment. The same pattern happened on National Public Radio. Morning Edition anchor Steve Inskeep gave Clinton more than seven minutes of air time to his thoughts on Obama and the economy, but no harassment inquiries.
This question was jaw-dropping in its ignorance. “Your administration was known politically for seeking to reposition the Democratic Party, not get stuck as being defined as tax-and-spend liberals,” Inskeep proclaimed. “President Obama also was seen as trying to take the party in a new [moderate] direction, but ended telling an interviewer last year that he had been tagged as another tax-and-spend liberal. How'd that happen to him?”
The Los Angeles Times reports "Police are searching for a man who tried to knock down a Ronald Reagan statue Sunday morning. Newport Beach Police received a call about 5:30 a.m. Sunday of a vandalism in progress at Bonita Canyon Sports Park on Bonita Canyon Drive. A witness said a man in dark clothes tried to attach a chain to the base of the statue. The chain was connected to the back of his pickup and he appeared to be trying to pull the statue down."
On the Stephanie Miller radio show on Monday, Miller said this act of vandalism "is one of America's funniest liberal pranks." Yet everyone knows Miller the reflexive partisan would get the vapors if anyone tried to damage the "Little Barry Obama" statue in Indonesia.
NPR's Philip Reeves slanted towards the Occupy Wall Street on Wednesday's All Things Considered as he played up the "huge outcry" over St. Paul Cathedral in London's dispute with the left-leaning movement, which has an encampment outside its doors. Reeves spotlighted a local official who "called St. Paul's a 'national laughing stock,'" and omitted sound bites from the opponents of the movement.
Host Guy Raz noted in his introduction to the correspondent's report how St. Paul's was a "national treasure" associated with Churchill's funeral and the wedding of Charles and Diana, and continued that it was now "the backdrop for another kind of drama: a protest camp modeled on the Occupy Wall Street movement. NPR's Philip Reeves says it's causing upheaval in the heart of British society."
Ed Schultz used to be conservative, then jumped ship more than a decade ago and became a left winger. Yet based on his conversation Monday with attorney and radio host Mike Papantonio, Schultz's conversion appears far from complete.
The two were talking on Schultz's radio show about allegations of sexual harassment leveled against GOP candidate Herman Cain in the 1990s while he was head of the National Restaurant Association. (audio clips after page break)
Brian Maloney at the Radio Equalizer identified the dirty mind Politico writer Glenn Thrush brought to talk radio (although if it's liberal talk radio, it's probably not safe for young audiences anyway). On the October 27 edition of the Bill Press show, Press and Thrush were discussing the very buzzworthy Herman Cain ad that concludes with Cain chief of staff Mark Block blowing cigarette smoke at the end.
Many media people wondered if this would send a bad pro-smoking message to America's youth. To Thrush, that seemed like a celebratory smoke after sex:
Perhaps you've seen it, the video of former Marine Corps sergeant Shamar Thomas accusing New York City police of brutality against Occupy Wall Street protesters.
Since the footage was posted Oct. 16 on YouTube, left-wing media have embraced Thomas as their one of their own, showering him with attention while avoiding potentially awkward questions about his background, such as Thomas's claim that his mother fought in Iraq and his father was deployed to Afghanistan. (video and audio clips after page break)
On Friday, NPR's Julie Rovner bemoaned the "crummy month for sentiment" about ObamaCare in an online report about the latest poll from the liberal Kaiser Family Foundation, which found that over 50% oppose the liberal law. Rovner also labeled Romney's Massachusetts health care law his "landmark achievement."
The correspondent lead her NPR.org item, "Democrats Lose Enthusiasm For Health Law," by seemingly downplaying the poll results and using her "crummy" label: "Sure, it's just one poll of many, but October marks a crummy month for sentiment about the federal Affordable Care Act." She continued by noting that "more than half of those polled...had an unfavorable view of the measure overhauling health care. Only 34 percent said they viewed the law favorably, a post-passage low."
On Wednesday, liberal talk radio host Randi Rhodes found nothing wrong with Occupy Oakland protesters throwing rocks and bottles at police (and even Mother Jones confirms that). She seemed to ignore reality entirely, asking “If you conservatives are so against class warfare, why are the cops using warfare tactics against peaceful demonstrators?”
Some may have been peaceful, but the police didn’t fight back because the protesters were all “peaceful.” But Rhodes was on a roll: “Why warfare? Why rubber bullets or any kind of bullets? Why tear gas or any kind of gas? What is the justification for throwing these, uh, concussion bombs at women -- and children? I don't get it!”
On Monday's Morning Edition, NPR's Carrie Kahn followed her network's standard operating procedure by omitting anti-illegal immigration conservatives from a report highlighting Latino Republicans' concern over the apparently "rough" language from GOP presidential candidates. Kahn cited one activist who bemoaned that the "the harsh talk is making it difficult to recruit new Latino voters."
During his introduction for the correspondent's report, fill-in host Ari Shapiro acknowledged that "Mr. Obama has lost popularity with Latinos recently, mostly due to the economy," but then added that "Hispanic voters looking for alternatives are not too happy with the Republican slate either." Kahn continued by playing up how "if you've been listening to the GOP presidential candidates lately, the talk about immigration control is getting rough."
Incoming NPR president Gary Knell smugly dismissed NPR critics in an interview with James Rainey of the Los Angeles Times. "If you listen over a period of time you hear voices from all ends of the political spectrum on NPR," Knell argued. "I think a lot of the critics, by what they say, don't even listen to the service." (Dear Mr. Smug: read the NPR section of NewsBusters, with links to your transcripts.)
That's not the only smug echo among the NPR rookies. Another line is that conservatives (or people who agree there's a liberal tilt) aren't the "real listeners," the "core audience" of NPR -- even if they're "core" funders through taxes. That's what new NPR ombudsman Edward Schumacher-Matos said in an interview on NPR's Talk of the Nation on October 11:
Editor's Note: The following is a quote from a letter NewsBusters publisher and Media Research Center (MRC) founder Brent Bozell sent to Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) earlier today, spurred in part by the recent revelation that NPR host Lisa Simeone served as a spokesperson for the Occupy DC protest.
NPR is out of control, using taxpayer money to lend support to a sometimes violent and lawless mob set on crippling the financial backbone of our country.
Matthew Boyle of the Daily Caller has a hot scoop about a National Public Radio employee aiding "Occupy" protests in the District of Columbia. "National Public Radio host Lisa Simeone appears to be breaking the taxpayer-subsidized network’s ethics rules by acting as a spokeswoman for Occupy D.C. group 'October 2011,' which is currently 'occupying” Freedom Plaza in Washington, D.C.'
Simeone hosts NPR’s nationally distributed “World of Opera” program and “SoundPrint,” a program that airs on DC NPR affiliate WAMU-FM. In a YouTube video uploaded in July, Simeone proclaimed "The time has come to stop these wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and all the other places we're now bombing with our drones and other equipment, and to demand that money that's being spent and wasted on slaughter come home here to spent in the U.S. on human needs."
After all, who knows what these loose-cannon layabouts might do next.
Easily irritated radio host and aspiring MSNBC flamethrower Ed Schultz has become a huge fan of Occupy Wall Street, even while keeping his distance from the protesters after many of them jeered him as a "corporatist" during a broadcast of "The Ed Show" from lower Manhattan. (audio after page break)
On the Washington Post-owned black commentary website The Root, managing editor Joel Dreyfuss wrote an open letter to Gary Knell, the new CEO of NPR, insisting the firing of Juan Williams means NPR should respond by going beyond its white liberal "myopia" and broadening the network to more "black voices and brown voices and white voices that challenge conventional liberal thinking."
Dreyfuss applauded Knell for "your efforts to set a new tone on this volatile topic after the nasty fallout that followed the clumsy exit of commentator Juan Williams early this year. The highly publicized incident left NPR with a tarnished image, seen by many as hypocritical in its tolerance of a variety of voices, and questionable when it came to giving people of color a significant role."