"American Idol" runner-up Adam Lambert's vocals weren't top-notch at last night's American Music Awards, but nobody really noticed. How could they, given his over-the-top and in-your-face sexual choreography?
Lambert's act during the show, aired on ABC, featured male dancers on leashes, an open-mouth kiss between Lambert and his male keyboardist, and simulated oral sex, both male-on-male and female-on-male.
Naturally, boundary-pushing Hollywood writers hailed Lambert's performance.
"As a TV viewer, I thought Lambert's performance was a gas, a delight, a blast of brash vulgarity in the midst of ordinary vulgarity," wrote Entertainment Weekly's Ken Tucker.
The Culture & Media Institute’s report on network coverage of Major Nidal Hasan and the Ft. Hood murders continues to gain media attention. On Nov. 14, Fox’s “News Watch” program led off with CMI’s findings.
“The Culture & Media Institute noticed something about the news coverage,” said host John Scott said of the Ft. Hood shooting. “Until President Obama spoke on Tuesday at a memorial service for the victims of the Ft. Hood attacks, 29 percent of evening news reports mentioned that Major Nical Malik Hasan was a Muslim. 93 percent of the stories ignored any terror connection. But after the president hinted at what ABC called ‘Islamic extremist views,” all three networks mentioned terrorism.”
On Nov. 12, Bill O’Reilly led off “The O’Reilly Factor” by framing his “Talking Points” segment around a report from the Culture & Media Institute on the biased network coverage of the Ft. Hood Massacre.
“A new study, by the Culture and Media Institute, a conservative group, says the following: 85 percent of network evening news stories on Ft. Hood did not mention the word ‘terror,’ O’Reilly said. “In fact, in 48 reports, ABC, CBS and NBC referenced terrorism just seven times. Only 29 percent of the evening news reports even mentioned Major Hasan was a Muslim. Unbelievable. Of those mentions, 50 percent defended Islam. And before the president’s speech at Ft. Hood, 93 percent of the network evening news stories ignored any discussion about a terror connection. But after the president said that extremist views were involved, all three networks began to report a possible connection.”
That said, this is a good time to recall that Dobbs and his employer were at very visible loggerheads a decade ago. In fact, yesterday's move by Dobbs is not his first resignation from the network. Here is Brent Baker's June 9, 1999 CyberAlert item describing what happened:
Lou Dobbs gone from CNN. Forced out by CNN President Rick Kaplan, or just frustrated by him? In a surprise announcement at the end of Tuesday’s The World Today, anchor Jim Moret informed viewers:
"And finally tonight, farewell to a colleague. Lou Dobbs, President of CNNfn and anchor of Moneyline, is resigning to launch a new Internet venture. Dobbs said he is ‘grateful to Ted Turner and CNN News Group Chairman Tom Johnson for the opportunity to have helped build CNN and cnn.com into a first-class television news and interactive institution.’ Lou Dobbs had been with CNN since its inception 19 years ago. He will start up space.com, a Web site for news, entertainment and educational content about space."
No mention of Kaplan and an on-air dispute the two had a couple of weeks ago about whether to carry live a Clinton speech may explain why. As Clay Waters of Bridge News first informed me, the May 25 Page Six column in the New York Post revealed:
Remember the case of the Census worker who was found hanging from a tree with the word ‘fed' scrawled across his chest? You remember - he died at the hands of right-wing commentators and anti-government tea partiers. He was killed because of an overwhelming case of right-wing paranoia. He was murdered by Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh, Michelle Bachmann, and Fox News.
Keep this quiet though...
While the death of Bill Sparkman was a media sensation for pushing anti-conservative sentiments just a couple of months ago, it is receiving little to no coverage currently. Why? Because, as investigators have recently speculated, there is a possibility that he died by his own hands.
Well, that just doesn't make for interesting news at the so-called legitimate news organizations.
As the AP states,
"The strange case attracted national attention when it first came to light, prompting worries that it may be a sign of increased anger toward the federal government in the first year of Barack Obama's presidency."
Prompting worries from whom? The unhinged left wishing to create sensational accusations? Check. The list follows:
Identical Twin Statements Earlier today, Media Research Center President and NewsBusters.org Publisher Brent Bozell announced this year's Dewey Defeats Truman Awards for incompetent political reporting.
Also today, Democratic National Committee (DNC) Chairman Tim Kaine issued a statement on last night's election results.
The similarities between the DNC Chair's words and CBS's Katie Couric's October 27 Award winning comments are striking.
In fact, I will provide you with each of their assertions, and reveal who said which only after the jump. Good luck guessing.
"...(T)he Republican candidate (for NY-23), a moderate, was purged from the Republican Party by the most extreme elements of the conservative right wing including Sarah Palin, Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck.... (W)hat occurred in New York has exposed a war within the Republican Party that will not soon end.... The all out war between Republicans and the far right wing is a disaster for the Republican Party and will dog it well after today."
"There's growing concern among some GOP leaders that controversial commentators and far-right conservatives have hijacked the message. People like Rush Limbaugh and Sarah Palin appeal to the base... (but) you can't win with just the base.... Before the 2010 midterm elections roll around, Republicans need to get the focus back onto the Big Tent where all are welcome - and off the sideshows that are popping up along the party's fringe."
Profits, not the killing of unborn children, are the "real immorality" of abortion, according to "View" panelist Joy Behar.
Behar expressed her unique view of morality during the Nov. 3 "Hot Topics" discussion about Abby Johnson, a Texas Planned Parenthood director who resigned from her post last month after seeing an abortion on an ultrasound.
Johnson explained to the local Texas CBS affiliate that Planned Parenthood had been pressuring her to focus on abortion, not pregnancy prevention because abortions brought in more money than family planning services.
ABC's "View" host Barbara Walters brought up Johnson's story, calling it "controversial" and Behar quickly denounced Planned Parenthood for making money off abortions. She called it "gross" and "obnoxious" before she stated, "I don't see abortions as a profit-making industry. I think that that is the real immorality of it."
Adultery did not fare well during a September 24 "Nightline" broadcast about the issue, but that didn't keep ABC's Cynthia McFadden from asking an evangelical pastor if he felt "a little intolerant" for his conservative views on the subject.
McFadden moderated a debate that tried to answer the question, "Are we born to cheat?" but appeared to mock Pastor Ed Young's responses whenever she could.
The proponents of adultery who appeared on the panel included Jenny Block, an author and participant in an open marriage, and Noel Biderman, the president and CEO of Ashley Madison, a Web site designed to help people begin extra-marital affairs. To be fair, Block and Biderman did face some tough questioning about their views, but they did not receive the same derision McFadden levied at Young.
For all that critics have hailed ABC's "Modern Family" for its non-stereotypical portrayal of a gay couple, the show itself is stereotypical Hollywood propaganda.
"Modern Family," filmed in a mock-documentary style, examines the lives of three couples from one family. Patriarch Jay (Ed O'Neill) is married to a much-younger, feisty Colombian woman. His daughter Claire is married to Phil who treats parenting like playtime. Jay's son Mitchell, is gay, and when the show began, has just adopted a baby with his partner Cameron.
Producers treated the 12.7 million viewers who tuned in Wednesday night for the premiere to a pro-gay adoption speech within the first two minutes of the program.
They say you shouldn't bite the hand that feeds you. But the 44th President of the United States doesn't seem to be worried about that.
President Barack Obama, still with no fear of being overexposed, made the rounds on five Sunday morning talk shows on Sept. 20 to make another attempt at winning the hearts and minds over on his vague health care proposal.
According to Obama, alleging he wasn't doing any "media-bashing," mentioned the three major cable news networks by name, and said they were the ones enabling the "rude" behavior that some of their on-air voices have decried by giving it so much attention.
After a summer swoon, you would think that the evening newscasts of the Big 3 networks would start to recover a bit now that many Americans are back from vacations, kids are back in school, and fall routines are getting established or re-established.
So far, you would be wrong.
It's early, and there's still plenty of time this fall to recover, but during the time period after Labor Day, the broadcasts primarily anchored by Brian Williams at NBC, Charles Gibson at ABC, and Katie Couric at CBS:
Are down a combined 28.5% from their peak in late January during the first full week of Barack Obama's presidency.
Have lost a combined 37.7% of their audience in the 25-54 demographic during the same time period.
Are down year-over-year compared to September 1, 2008, the week after Labor a year ago, by 8.9% overall and 18.1% in the 25-54 demographic.
At 19.55 million, are basically drawing audiences no larger than they were during this past (for them) miserable summer.
Critics love David Letterman. They love him because he’s mean and liberal and does everything they demand: further the leftist agenda through the brutal use of humiliation to target any public figure (or their child) who might derail Leftist causes.
And contrary to conventional wisdom, Letterman’s not edgy. In fact, he’s just the opposite. Doing exactly what those who can criticize you want you to do is not edgy. Kissing the big Manhattan/Los Angeles bi-coastal [rear] of the elite is not edgy. He’s their jester; their puppet. Worse, he’s about as funny as watching your old, half-deaf Uncle intimidate, humiliate and demean your Aunt and then smile at the rest of the family as though he’s just reaffirmed his manhood. Letterman reminds me of the Jason Robards character in “Parenthood” in more ways than you can imagine. In other words, he’s a jerk, but in a sad end-of-his-life kind of way.
Oh, and how the elite critics resented nice ole’ Jay Leno for cleaning Letterman’s ratings’ clock all those years. And now that Jay’s back eating up primetime, they couldn’t wait to jump all over him with sniffing disapproval fed through a filter of wrist-flicking dismissal.
What a novelty: a political reporter who reports on the remarkable success of a political book.
Michael Calderone of Politico has been just about alone in reporting on the popularity of conservative radio host and author Mark Levin’s book, “Liberty and Tyranny: A Conservative Manifesto.”
In his blog on September 15, Calderone wrote that “Levin has now sold a million copies of his latest book, Liberty & Tyranny, according to a release.” And Calderone noted that “‘Liberty & Tyranny’ spent 12 weeks at the top of the New York Times' best-seller list and remains in the Top Ten.”
A bipartisan consensus of senators in Washington is newsworthy in these fiercely partisan times, but when the matter of agreement is something that leaves egg on the faces of the left-wing community organizers, eh, not so much.
Yesterday, in an 83-7 vote -- 50 Democrats and 33 Republicans for; 6 Democrats and 1 independent against -- the Senate passed an amendment to an appropriations bill that would bar the use of federal funds to the scandal-ridden Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN). [related item on media ignoring the ACORN story by my colleague Dan Gainor here]
This morning, neither ABC's "Good Morning America" nor CBS's "Early Show" nor NBC's "Today" reported on the vote and the underlying controversy surrounding the liberal community organizing group.
Threshold Editions, part of Simon & Schuster, announced today that conservative radio host and author Mark R. Levin’s “Liberty and Tyranny: A Conservative Manifesto” has officially sold one million copies since its release in March. No thanks to the mainstream media.
As the Culture and Media Institute detailed in a new Special Report “Unmentionable: Best Selling Conservative Books and the Networks that Ignore Them,” Levin’s book, which spent 12 weeks at No. 1 on the New York Times Best Sellers List, has been ignored by the mainstream media. Levin told CMI that “we have not heard from any of the major networks, and the only major newspaper that has interviewed me is Philadelphia Inquirer, and that’s because I’m from Philadelphia.”
Obviously, that hasn’t harmed sales. “The book is selling by word of mouth,” Levin said. “I’ve done very little media, and its chugging along.”
There's no doubt the so-called mainstream media turned their collective noses up at the Sept. 12 march on Washington, D.C. to protest the policies of Democratic-controlled federal government - whether in the form of denigration, downplay or outright ignoring the event.
However, conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh has suggested a different tactic. On his Sept. 14 show, Limbaugh proposed a future round of these grassroots protests not take place at the seats of power in government, but instead the headquarters and outposts of the local and national media.
"There have been hundreds and thousands of protests by conservative groups that haven't been covered, and tiny turnouts by the left that are covered," Limbaugh said. "You know all this as well as I do. What about this? We're looking for a force multiplier. Yeah, the protest in Washington on Saturday was great, two million people, but imagine what a force multiplier would be if the next one were held outside of local and national television networks and their headquarters where they can't miss it?"
Not everyone at the NBC Universal umbrella of networks got the gag order memo about the Sept. 12 march on Washington, D.C.
Rick Santelli, who has been a target of the Obama White House and is credited with being the inspiration for the 2009 tea party movement, spoke out about how the media ignored the march. But, a year after the fall of Lehman Brothers, he was making the larger point that the government's intervention to thwart a financial crisis had been an ineffectual and potentially dangerous maneuver at the expense of taxpayers.
"I think this one-year anniversary is great, but I think it's great for another reason," Santelli said on CNBC's Sept. 14 "Squawk Box." "I think someday we'll learn that we didn't need to do very much, that time heals all wounds and you don't have to go broke in the process."
With the health care debate getting loud and furious, you have to wonder why Hollywood has been so remarkably silent. Maybe the Celeberati don’t care whether citizens have health care, or maybe they are happy with the generous coverage they get from SAG and AFTRA, and believe the President who tells them they will get to keep their current coverage.
It can’t be accidental. Certainly there must be one celebutard who has an opinion on the debate. I long for a wonderful bit of wisdom from Sheryl Crow, perhaps a suggestion to save costs and the environment by washing and re-using band-aids.
Where is Barbra Streisand? Barbra has been noticeably absent from all political debate lately. Probably not coincidentally, she just released a new album. Perhaps her handlers advised Babs to tone it down; that her target audience is composed primarily of senior sitizens now, a demographic that has a tendency to skew conservative and worry greatly about their health care. (The profit motivation is an awesome force, strong enough to restrain torrents of wisdom from the Great Barbra Streisand.)
Even Mike Farrell, a frequent advocate of government health care, has been silent lately. Mike is a fortunate celebrity, whose name would be unrecognizable to anybody, if Wayne Rogers hadn’t stormed off the set of M*A*S*H 35 years ago. Farrell is still making an incredible living based on those eight years of work he did more than a quarter century ago; he gets a little bit of change every time you watch a re-run of M*A*S*H.
He is one of those who believes in a “right” to healthcare. The flaw in his thinking is that health care does not exist without the labor of others, and you have no “right” to the labor of others. I wonder if Mike Farrell believes that access to free reruns of M*A*S*H is a basic human right?
Since the 1940s, an appearance on The New York Times Best Sellers List has been the mark of commercial success for any book. Authors with titles on the list can count on media attention to help sell even more copies. Unless they are conservatives.
Conservative books and authors have been very successful recently, as evidenced by their showing on the best sellers list. Since January 2009, conservatives enjoyed 95 total weeks on the list, compared to just 80 weeks for liberal books and authors. At this writing Michelle Malkin’s “Culture of Corruption” is at No.1, and several other conservative titles have prominent berths on the list.
But as the Culture & Media Institute discovered, viewers of ABC, CBS and NBC might never know of the popularity and commercial success of conservative books.
Who says the media are monolithic in their thinking?
Yesterday we informed you of the media's serial misuse of an Obama-as-Hitler poster from esoteric left-winger Lyndon LaRouche's website, as outlets like NBC (on their Nightly News and Meet the Press), CNN and MSNBC all ascribed the poster to sentiments roiled up by talk radio host Rush Limbaugh specifically and conservatives generally.
We were entertained by the fact that all of these highly trained, keen-eyed journalists missed the words "LaRouchePAC.com" - in fairly large type - printed at the bottom of every one of the placards they used for their little reporting projects.
Well apparently CBS hasn't yet learned the lesson we had hoped to impart. In fact, last night they did the other networks one worse.
For the words "LaRouchPAC.com" are prominently visible three times (screen captures below the fold) on two different Obama-as-Hitler posters during reporter Ben Tracy's segment, yet that doesn't stop him from blaming it on right-wingers.
As the second Obama-as-Hitler poster is shown, with LaRouchePAC.com clearly visible front and center, Tracy offers up:
The media have repeatedly stated how "angry," "hostile" and "ugly" town hall meetings across America are becoming. They are of course largely ascribing the nastiness to conservatives voicing their opposition to (among other things) President Barack Obama and Congress' proposed government takeover of the health care system.
The press has been particularly offended by the "extreme" use of references to Adolf Hitler specifically and Nazis generally. One image they have repeatedly used as an example of this alleged right-wing extremism is a poster of President Obama - on whose face a Hitler mustache has been Photo Shopped - bearing the caption "I've Changed."
We have compiled a video montage (at right) of just some of the recent news programs that have ascribed this Obama-with-Mustache poster to conservative town hall attendees. (The Obama-with-Mustache image itself appears just below the fold.)
Today NewsBusters' parent organization, the Media Research Center (MRC), revealed that ABC News is not the only network guilty of giving Democratic-donating medical doctors a microphone to "report" on President Barack Obama's government health care proposal.
CBS and NBC medical physician correspondents have also chipped in their own cash to Democratic - but never Republican - candidates.
"ABC, CBS and NBC have no excuse for the applause these doctors have given to promote the largest expansion of government-run healthcare our country has ever seen," MRC President Brent Bozell said in a statement. "There's nothing benign about giving a megaphone to doctors who have a financial stake in the success of liberals' most aggressive platform in decades," he added.
So Democrats don’t like all those ads for prescription drugs on T.V. – the ones for high cholesterol, enlarged prostates, dry eyes and, yes, ED. On C-Span recently, House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Henry Waxman, D., Calif., said “a lot of people start thinking they have medical problems because they’ve seen too many of these commercials. I don’t think that’s doing the public a lot of good. It’s certainly making the drug companies richer, but it’s not doing a lot of good for the public.”
That statement tells us an awful lot about Waxman, President Obama and the other liberals currently trying to cram socialized health care down the throats of a reluctant citizenry.
Waxman assumes that there is something inherently wrong with citizens knowing that these drugs exist. Waxman is a statist ideologue, so perhaps he really believes information should be rationed (he certainly believes health care should be rationed). Maybe what bothers him in this case is that the state has not yet managed to insert itself into this transaction. A drug company speaking directly to a consumer smacks too much of liberty.
The congressman must have a low opinion of the medical profession, to imply that consumers need only ask their doctors for prescriptions and they’ll get them. Physicians pay massive malpractice insurance premiums and the Democrats refuse to cap malpractice tort awards. So in violation of the universal law of CYA, doctors can’t be trusted to give cursory exams to verify the presence of the maladies in question.
The much anticipated list finally arrived. Many hard working producers, writers, and actors waited with baited breath to hear the possibly career-changing announcement; hoping that their dedication to their craft and the constant effort to produce quality television had paid off. And then they realized, "Oh wait, the Emmys have ignored us for years..." It's a point driven home this year with the surprise (but not really) nomination of "Family Guy."
Family Guy has been nominated for Outstanding Comedy Series by the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. Unlike previous years, these nominations were decided by popular vote. Essentially, the Academy decided not to have a panel make the final decision, instead the vote lay solely on the members. Continuing with the Emmy tradition of validating shows that bash family, religion, and moral values, the Academy put the icing on the cake with "Family Guy."
Last Tuesday, NewsBusters Editor-at-Large Brent Baker noted that seven soldiers who had been killed the week prior in Afghanistan received just 1/20th of the evening newscast time that ABC, CBS, and NBC devoted to the passing of pop star Michael Jackson.
The same day, NewsBusters Publisher and Media Research Center President Brent Bozell slammed the broadcast networks in a statement: "There is no justification for determining that the death of a celebrity over a week ago merits 20 times more news coverage than the tragic deaths of American soldiers in Afghanistan."
Perhaps in some measure reacting to the criticism, CBS's "Sunday Morning" program yesterday aired a nearly 3-minute-long opinion segment featuring Martha Gillis, whose nephew, 1st Lt. Brian Bradshaw, was killed on June 25 in Afghanistan.
In the video, Gillis criticized the media for its lack of coverage [audio available here]:
Reacting to Media Research Center (MRC) analysis showing the deaths of seven U.S. soldiers killed in Afghanistan recently has received just 1/20th of the network coverage devoted to Michael Jackson, NewsBusters Publisher and MRC President Bozell Bozell released the following statement earlier today:
This is a prime example of why network television news audiences are disappearing before our eyes. There is no justification for determining that the death of a celebrity over a week ago merits 20 times more news coverage than the tragic deaths of American soldiers in Afghanistan.
For anyone to say - with a straight face - that such a disparity was an ‘editorial judgment' only further insults the collective intelligence of the audience these newscasts claim to serve. In fact, it's just more evidence that network ‘news,' for all practical purposes, no longer exists.
Clearly, the most important takeaway from ABC's low-rated White House forum on health care was President Barack Obama's admission that he would go outside the constraints of a nationalized system to get the "very best care" if necessary for his own family.
A House vote on Waxman-Markey’s American Clean Energy & Security Act to cap-and-trade emissions was imminent June 26. Some Republicans have called the bill “the largest tax increase in American history,” but despite the enormous burden to taxpayers the three major networks failed to cover the bill the night before.
ABC, NBC, and CBS instead devoted June 25 evening news programming to recently deceased celebrities, Michael Jackson and Farrah Fawcett. While the deaths of such iconic figures was certainly newsworthy, failing to provide coverage over legislation that would cost every American family $1,241 a year in higher energy bills was irresponsible.
The lack of network coverage on the cap-and-trade issue isn’t new (only 13 stories between Jan. 20 and May 25) and has contributed to ignorance and confusion about the issue.
Earlier today, Julia A. Seymour of the Media Research Center's Business & Media Institute (BMI) pointed to a fact-check done by her group showing that "from January 20 to June 16 those quoted in health care stories on ABC's morning and evening news shows favored ObamaCare by a 3-to-1 margin (55 supporters to 18 critics)."
You think that margin is bad; wait until you see the ratio at ABC of Obama vs. McCain campaign contributions.