Conservatives have long joked that the national press corps see Barack Obama as the second coming of Jesus Christ. Today, Newsweek – at least what’s left of it, an online product for tablets and e-readers – made it official.
Next to a side shot of Obama’s head, the “Inauguration 2013” cover story pronounces: “The Second Coming.”
While many of us can probably wax nostalgic about a job in our past that was thoroughly challenging and enjoyable, I'd venture to say not many of us would fondly recall unlimited expense accounts, much less free-flowing booze and a sexually promiscuous culture that treated female employees as ready-to-order mistresses. But then, you might if you worked for Newsweek in the 1960s and '70s.
In his "oral history" interview feature that was compiled for the magazine's final print edition, Newsweek.com staffer Andrew Romano chatted with some of the writers and editors from the Mad Men era of the weekly magazine. What particularly struck me was the almost wistful way in which many interview subjects fondly recalled sexual liaisons in the magazine's Madison Avenue office. Also seemingly excused by Newsweek alumni was the blatant sexual harassment female staffers were shown. At one point, one justified the harassment by attributing it to the journalistic profession writ large, practically absolving offenders of any personal responsibility (emphases mine):
As 2012 winds down, we're reliving some of the worst media bias of the year with our Best Notable Quotables of 2012. Yesterday, I recounted some of the nastiest barbs journalists threw at the GOP ticket; today, a look at some of the most egregious favors committed on behalf of Barack Obama's campaign.
While conservatives like Rick Santorum were often cast as radical or weird, journalists lovingly fawned over President Obama as if he was still the rock star of Campaign 2008. Sherri Shepherd, co-host of ABC's The View, won our "Let Us Fluff Your Pillow Award," for obsequious Obama interviews, after a September 25 encounter in which Shepherd seemed intent on casting the President as the Romancer-in-Chief.
As 2012 winds down, it's time to look back at some of the year's most egregious media bias, as documented by the Media Research Center's "Best Notable Quotables of 2012."
Much of what made this year unique was how the so-called "mainstream media" linked arms with the Obama campaign to denigrate and demonize conservatives and Republicans, even those as mild and moderate as GOP nominee Mitt Romney.
Things have really come full circle for the perpetually troubled liberal magazine Newsweek, since it infamously smeared Newt Gingrich on its cover as "the Gingrich who stole Christmas." Eighteen years later, Newsweek is literally doing that to more than 50 employees it fired on Friday.
The pink-slipped staff for the Newsweek/Daily Beast Company received a letter from Editor-in-Chief Tina Brown and Chief Executive Officer Baba Shetty on Friday that can be summed up in four words: “Happy holidays. You're fired.”
The shocking revelation of CIA Director David Petraeus's adultery has rocked Washington and has thrilled the media, perhaps a little too much.
Forget the pain that adultery causes and which Holly Petraeus must be feeling right now. For the Daily Beast/Newsweek's Lizzie Crocker, the whole situation is the perfect news peg to offer aspiring philanderers lessons they can learn from the ex-CIA chief's "rookie mistakes."
With the long-time news weekly on the verge of shifting from a paper publication to an online magazine, the folks at Newsweek have apparently thrown caution to the wind and are publishing whatever they feel like as long as it praises Democrats and hazes Republicans.
Case in point: the cover of the periodical's post-election edition, which shows President Obama dressed like Napoleon Bonaparte in addition to a headline that reads: "GOP: You're Old, You're White, You're History!"
PolitiFact has received a fair share of criticism from conservatives for their spin-heavy fact-checks. The liberal media, for the most part, has accordingly been dismissive of such conservative complaints. But now even The Daily Beast/Newsweek is joining in on the criticism, with contributor Megan McArdle joining conservatives in noting the fact-checker repeated repetition of a falsehood regarding the Lilly Ledbetter Supreme Court case.
On PBS's Charlie Rose show on Monday, as the group discussed the night's presidential debate, New York magazine's John Heilemann described Mitt Romney's past statements on foreign policy as "relatively harsh and relatively bellicose," as he argued that Romney had faced political "dangers" in his foreign policy positions "because he's been surrounded by some number of neo-conservative foreign policy advisors."
The Associated Press published an article on the reasons for the demise of the print of edition of Newsweek but skipped any mention of the former editor of that magazine, Jon Meacham, who was instumental in ensuring its failure. It's the equivalent of publishing an article on the reasons why the Titanic sunk in which the word "iceberg" does not appear.
What Meacham did to destroy Newsweek was so absurd that he really deserves a plaque in the Bad Business Decisions Hall of Fame. Am I exaggerating? Here is Howard Kurtz at the Washington Post explaining the business "genius" of Jon Meacham in May 2009:
Fox News's Bret Baier quoted NewsBusters associate editor Noel Sheppard on Thursday's Special Report.
In a "Grapevine" segment about Newsweek's announcement that it will be printing its last magazine on December 31, Baier read from the note Newsweek publicists sent Scott Whitlock at NewsBusters from editor Tina Brown in July claiming that this wasn't going to happen (video follows with transcribed highlights and commentary):
In the wake of the announcement on Thursday that Newsweek will cease print publication at the end of the year, Time's managing editor appeared on Morning Joe to swear that his magazine won't be next. Co-host Willie Geist quizzed, "But it's still cost effective for you to print this out every week?" Richard Stengel first admitted "the most expensive single thing" is to physically produce the publication.
He hedged, "And obviously the post office has a lot of trouble." Stengel then insisted the print version of the liberal magazine "becomes a premium product that you get in addition to all the other as specks of Time on every other platform." Offering some empty bravado, Stengel asserted, "We will continue to do well. I've always said like the NBA slogan, there can only be one – and that's us."
For the past few weeks, NewsBusters has been showcasing the most egregious examples of liberal media bias the Media Research Center has uncovered in our 25-year history, all leading up to tonight’s 25th Anniversary Gala and DisHonors Awards in Washington, D.C.
To close out this series, I’ve pulled together what I consider the 25 most obnoxious quotes of the MRC’s history. It’s a pretty offensive display of smug disdain for everyday conservatives, rabid hatred for conservative leaders, embarrassing sycophancy for liberals, and a little anti-American treason thrown in for good measure.
These worst-of-the-worst quotes and video appear below the jump; or you can check out the year-by-year posts here.
Despite having failed to stop let alone reverse the rising of the seas, Barack Obama has made Newsweek’s newest ten best presidents list, which gives readers a top ten of the chief executives since 1900. Newsweek, whose list unsurprisingly is dominated by liberal Democrats, gave this justification for selecting Obama in a caption in a photo slide:
Picking a sitting president in a tally of the best is tricky – history hasn’t had time to put things in a more sober context. But the historic election of America’s first black president cannot be ignored. That a man whose ancestors included a slave could become the leader of a nation founded to some extent in slavery is as much an achievement for the country as it is a marker for Obama himself. Whether Obama stays or goes, his standing, as a fundamentally groundbreaking president will remain.
In an article published shortly before 5 a.m. EDT on the morning of Sept. 26, The Daily Beast's Eli Lake revealed that three separate U.S. intelligence officials confirmed to him that within 24 hours of the September 11 attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, the Obama administration had strong reason to suspect al Qaeda ties to the deadly violence.
Lake noted that the identities of at least four of the participants in the attack on the consulate were found within 24 hours, one of which has been tracked by his use of social media. This of course conflicts with the administration's early story. You may recall that four days after the attack, on Sept 16, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations insisted to CBS' Bob Schieffer that the attack was spontaneous and tied to an obscure video on YouTube.
NewsBusters has been showcasing the most egregious bias the Media Research Center has uncovered over the years — four quotes for each of the 25 years of the MRC, 100 quotes total — all leading up to our big 25th Anniversary Gala tomorrow evening. (Click here for posts recounting the worst of 1988 through 2011.)
Today, the worst bias of 2012 (so far): Newsweek sees Barack Obama as “grotesquely underappreciated,” afflicted by critics who are simply “dumb;” Chief Justice John Roberts becomes a media hero by voting to save ObamaCare; and an ex-CNN correspondent charges Republicans are trying to take the country back “to the good old days of Jim Crow.” [Quotes and video below the jump.]
NewsBusters is showcasing the most egregious bias the Media Research Center has uncovered over the years — four quotes for each of the 25 years of the MRC, 100 quotes total — all leading up to our big 25th Anniversary Gala on Thursday night.
Click here for posts recounting the worst of 1988 through 2008. Today, the worst bias of 2009: Journalists are thrilled by Barack Obama’s arrival in the Oval Office, with ABC’s Terry Moran suggesting he’s the “first President since George Washington to be taking a step down into the Oval Office,” and Newsweek’s Evan Thomas seeing Obama’s approach to foreign policy as being “above the world. He’s sort of God.” [Quotes and video below the jump.]
Since September 2, NewsBusters has been showcasing the most egregious bias the Media Research Center has uncovered over the years — four quotes for each of the 25 years of the MRC, 100 quotes total — all leading up to our big 25th Anniversary Gala next week.
Click here for blog posts recounting the worst of 1988 through 2003. Today, the worst bias of 2004: CBS’s Morley Safer eulogized Ronald Reagan by saying “I don’t think history has any reason to be kind to him;” the New York Times asks George W. Bush if he feels “personal responsibility” for 9/11; and Dan Rather finds “exclusive” documents regarding Bush and his Vietnam-era service in the National Guard. [Quotes and video below the jump.]
Each morning, NewsBusters has been showcasing the most egregious bias the Media Research Center has uncovered over the years — four quotes for each of the 25 years of the MRC, 100 quotes total — all leading up to our big 25th Anniversary Gala September 27.
If you’ve missed a previous blog, recounting the worst of 1988 through 1999, you can find them here. Today, the worst bias of 2000: Amid the custody battle over 6-year-old Elian Gonzalez, Newsweek touts life under the Castro dictatorship (“The boy will nestle again in a more peaceable society that treasures its children”), while PBS host Bonnie Erbe rudely slams conservative guest Linda Chavez during a gun control debate. [Quotes and video below the jump.]
Once a day for 25 days, NewsBusters is showcasing the most egregious bias the Media Research Center has uncovered over the years — four quotes for each of the 25 years of the MRC, 100 quotes total — all leading up to our big 25th Anniversary Gala on September 27. (Click here for ticket information)
So far, we’ve published the worst quotes from 1988 through 1993 (you can find those here). Today, the worst bias of 1994, including ABC’s Peter Jennings calling voters “two-year-olds” for electing a Republican Congress (“the voters had a temper tantrum last week”), and a USA Today columnist hoping Clarence Thomas would die. [Quotes and video below the jump.]
Each morning, NewsBusters is showcasing the most egregious bias the Media Research Center has uncovered over the years — four quotes for each of the 25 years of the MRC, 100 quotes total — all leading up to our big 25th Anniversary Gala on September 27. (Click here for ticket information)
Already this week, we’ve published the worst quotes of 1988, 1989, 1990 and 1991. Today, the worst bias of 1992. Highlights include Eleanor “Cougar” Clift ogling the new Democratic ticket of Clinton and Gore (“I was struck by the expanse of their chests. They may have to put out their stats”), and onetime NBC Nightly News anchor John Chancellor opining that it was "embarrassing" that the U.S. had so few casualties in the first Gulf War. [Quotes and video below the jump.]
High unemployment? A $16 trillion debt? Rising fuel prices?
Perhaps the real issue of this campaign is that Vogue editor Anna Wintour wants to be appointed ambassador to France. At least that's the suggestion published in two eerily similar articles in The New Republic and The Daily Beast. The rumor (officially denied) is that dahling Anna is growing weary of New York and would like to make a big splash on the Paris fashion scene by showing up there as ambassador to France. Both periodicals not only contain this same theme but even their titles are strangely similar. On top of that the quotes in both stories make one wonder if they are reciting the same information fed to both authors (Noreen Malone of The New Republic and Robin Givhan of The Daily Beast). To illustrate the amazing similarities of both articles, I shall place The New Republic quotes first followed by those of The Daily Beast in italics. First, let us look at the two similar titles:
Due to vacation, I missed an article Brent Baker showed me that’s really shocking. In the August 27 Newsweek, Tunku Varadarajan – the man who replaced Fareed Zakaria in the post of editor of Newsweek International – wrote what he calls a “full-frontal polemic” defending Zakaria against what he called the “plagiarism McCarthyites” and a “lynch mob”... that begins with me.
Before commenting on this hyperbolic article, let’s isolate the most interesting line about Zakaria: “He was in favorable consideration by Team Obama for the post of national security adviser. That will not, now happen.” This would have been the second journalist to revolve from news magazine bigwig to Democrat foreign-policy bigwig: see Time’s Strobe Talbott, who became Bill Clinton’s deputy secretary of state.
That quote pretty much sums up the reaction of the Democratic Underground and Daily Kos posters to the Newsweek Obama cover, Hit The Road, Barack. And as you can see in these two DUer threads here and here as well as this Kossack thread, the left is hitting back...hard. A big part of their anger comes from their sense of betrayal from a "friendly," namely Newsweek magazine. The good news is that their very anger and outrage is also incredibly entertaining. So break out the popcorn and soda and enjoy the inadvertent comedy which comes first from the DUers: