It looks like the PC Police will have to put out an APB for Time Magazine's Bobby Ghosh, his layers of editors, and his managers.
First, Ghosh had the unmitigated gall to write an item called "Domestic Terror Incidents Hit a Peak in 2009." In it, he notes that the "2009 saw an unprecedented surge in terror 'events' on U.S. soil." Clearly Ghosh doesn't understand that we're in a new era where the rest of the world reflexively loves us, thanks to our ever-apologetic president.
Ghosh compounded his error by saying that the November killings at a U.S. military base were t-t-t- .... terror-related:
On its Web site, GQ Magazine asks the burning question, "Has the Capital Gotten Cooler Under Obama?" The magazine says yes and no. But when it comes to Barack Obama and Co., you'll be relieved to know that the answer is a resounding YES!! In a slide show, we learn that Obama is "our best-dressed prez since JFK. When he goes tieless, Ahmadinejad should take notice." On Obama in jeans, "the loose fit seems presidential."
Also lookin' good to GQ is Joe Biden: "The veep has terrific style. He deftly mixes colors and patterns with his shirts and ties, and his superb Hickey Freeman suits fit impeccably." Senator John Kerry (D-MA) "looks best when dressing like the patrician he is. Super 180s suits and Hermès ties—senators ought to look senatorial." Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT) is "groovier than his usual banker attire would suggest. . . He goes for cool detail, like green ties on Saint Paddy's. And he has a thing for Panama hats." Senator Roland Burris (D-IL) has "a sharp eye for detail and a suave color sense."
Representative John Conyers (D-MI) is a "clotheshorse" who is "a lifetime sartorial achiever." Representative Charles Rangel (D-NY) "can match sartorial splendor with Sean Combs and purples with Prince. . . " We're told of Representative Anthony Weiner (D-NY): "The dapper former roommate of Jon Stewart could almost pass for European." And who wouldn't want to pass for European? When it comes to speechwriter Jon Favreau, "Obama's golden boy of letters epitomizes style's new wave in D.C."
There's certainly an argument to be made that college football's Bowl Championship Series (BCS) isn't an ideal system, but just to what degree should the federal government come in and regulate this multi-billion dollar industry?
According to Andy Staples, a writer for Sports Illustrated's Web site, SI.com who appeared on the Fox News Channel's Dec. 9 "Studio B," the industry should be revamped from a regulatory aspect because of an issue of "fairness." He was asked by host Shepard Smith why it is appropriate for Congress to be meddling in the college football.
"It is funny because everybody says, ‘Why is Congress wasting its time on this?'" Staples said. "It is a multi-billion dollar business involving more than 100 publicly funded universities. That is probably something Congress might want to dabble in if there is a question about it, and there are some questions about it."
Life was hell under Bush. But hang in there: things'll get better under Obama.
Class dismissed: that's really all you need to know about the latest Time cover story—The Decade From Hell And Why The Next One Will Be Better. But just to drive home the Manichean message, Time editor Rick Stengel and Andy Serwer [of Time stable-mate Fortune], who wrote the cover story, appeared on Morning Joe today.
Of course there's the inconvenient detail about Barack Obama having been elected in this decade. But not to worry. Serwer suggests we "see Barack Obama being elected as the beginning of the next decade."
On Nov. 18, Foreign Policy's Steven Simon and Jonathan Stevenson wrote an article titled "The Real Shock of Fort Hood." If you thought that the shock of Fort Hood was that an Army Major fired over 100 rounds into a crowded processing center on a military base - killing 13 and wounding 29 - you're wrong. "It's not that the massacre occurred," said the article. "It's that it hadn't occurred before."
According to Simon and Stevenson, Major Nidal Malik Hasan was simply another American Muslim that was the victim of "innumerable stresses, including discrimination and the strain of divided loyalties in their country's eight-year-long war against Muslims in the Middle East and Central Asia."
The authors argued that such circumstances would be "enough to inspire conflict in the minds of even the most patriotic of American Muslims in the U.S." So much so that it should be "no surprise" that "one unstable member of this community finally erupted in violence."
It's our fault. Americans aren't making Muslims "comfortable." And the article specifically cited "Christian right-wing rhetoric" as a catalyst in the "Muslim alienation" which led to Hasan's shooting spree.
On Nov. 9, CW's "Gossip Girl" featured a threesome, which included the not-so-Disney-anymore Hilary Duff. The show depicted threesomes as a normal, expected event in a college student's life. But that wasn't crass enough for Entertainment Weekly's Tim Stack, who said that the threesome was too "chaste."
"It was basically no more risqué than a game of spin the bottle," Stack lamented.
After this week's episode, though, which featured graphic flashbacks of the threesome, Stack has declared that "Gossip Girl" is "back up the quality ladder."
"The flashbacks to the threesome were waaaay more hot than anything in last week's much-hyped episode," he said. "I wonder if the Parents Television Council tuned in last night."
Stack went on to say that "Gossip Girl not only entertains, it teaches."
"We also learned a much repeated rule of threesomes," he said. "The third person is always supposed to be a stranger!"
On Nov. 9 CW's teen-targeted "Gossip Girl" featured a threesome, portraying it as a normal, expected event in a college student's life.
The episode depicted three friends completing a list that was supposedly printed in their college newspaper: "The 15 Things Every College Student Must Do Before Graduating." Number 11 was "Have a Threesome."
On Nov. 10, the day after the episode aired, Entertainment Weekly commented on the "Gossip Girl's" threesome, saying, "The whole thing was pretty chaste. Aside from a shot of them all in bed together in the end, it was basically no more risqué than a game of spin the bottle."
What Entertainment Weekly doesn't grasp (or perhaps doesn't want to) is that it's not about how graphic the scene was or wasn't. It's the fact that the show was promoting the idea as normal and even expected.
With condescension reminiscent of Peter Jennings - in 1994 the ABC anchor characterized the Republican takeover of Congress as the electorate having a "temper tantrum" - Lindenberger portrayed same-sex marriage opponents as stubborn children, saying, "Maine voters insisted on having their say on an issue that simply will not go away." Rather than just report and analyze the outcome, the article simultaneously sympathized with gay activists and emphasized, by way of many pro-gay quotes, the futility of fighting against an "incredible campaign" that simply wants justice.
Maine defenders of traditional marriage only had one quote in the nearly 1,200-word article: "What's the hurry [for gay marriage]?" That's six words, if you count the brackets.
The article also reassured same-sex marriage proponents that this rejection will leave no lasting scars:
In an October 20 The Gaggle blog post, Newsweek's David A. Graham sought to explain to readers why the New York 23rd Congressional District special election on November 3 "is more important than" the New Jersey and Virginia gubernatorial races.
Graham portrayed the race -- pitting liberal Republican Dede Scozzafava against Conservative Party candidate Doug Hoffman and Democratic candidate Bill Owens -- as a bellwether fight for the soul of the Republican Party. Graham noted Scozzafava's socially liberal stances, implying that conservative ire over her nomination tothe GOP ticket in the special election was based solely on the ire of social conservatives.
Yet nowhere in his blog post did Graham explain that economic conservatives and libertarian-leaning Republicans worry Scozzafava is truly a Republican-in-name-only (RINO) on economic matters as well, given her ties to ACORN.
The Magazine Publishers of America's American Society of Magazine Editors has added a category to its annual magazine cover awards: Obama. This new category is the only ASME category focused on a single person, and highlights the reverential attitude for the President widely held in the magazine publishing community.
ASME represents about 850 magazine editors nationwide. According to its website, the organization "works to preserve editorial independence." How they manage to maintain this air of objectivity while devoting an entire awards section to such a polarizing figure is a mystery.
This year's best Obama magazine cover, and recipient of ASME's Cover of the Year award, was published by Rolling Stone. Fawning coverage of president and candidate Barack Obama from the music (and wannabe left-wing politics) magazine appeared on the cover on numerous occasions. The winning cover is at right.
A year ago Time magazine's David Van Biema wrote up a short, favorable take on the so-called Green Bible, an edition based on the New Revised Standard Version (NRSV) that placed "green references" in "a pleasant shade of forest green, much as red-letter editions of the Bible encrimson the words of Jesus." But wait, there's more, The Green Bible also includes "supplementary writings" several of which "cite the Genesis verse in which God gives humanity 'dominion' over the earth" and "Others [which] assert that eco-neglect violates Jesus' call to care for the least among us: it is the poor who inhabit the floodplains."
Even though The Green Bible is risible both from a commercial standpoint as a marketing ploy and theologically as a bastardization of the real heart of Christian doctrine, neither charge was entertained as a valid criticism by the Time staffer. Van Biema even hinted that evangelicals, 54 percent of whom "agreed that 'stricter environmental laws and regulations are worth the cost'" might embrace the translation despite strong reservations from conservative theologians.
There's a side of America that scares Frenchmen, French Culture Minister Frédéric Mitterrand was quoted by Time magazine Paris-based writer Bruce Crumley, and it's the side of American determination that doesn't let a 32-year-old rape case die, even if the perpetrator is an elderly survivor of the Holocaust.
Seeking to explain the "cultural divide" that's as "wide as the Atlantic" between America and Europe, Crumley noted that Europeans are "shocked and dismayed that an internationally acclaimed artist" such as Roman Polanski "could be jailed for such an old offense."
Of course, at no point did Crumley cite any public opinion polls with empirical data to back up his argument about the U.S.-European cultural divide on pursuing fugitives who jump bail after drugging and anally raping 13-year-old girls.
Wondering if she's peering into the "Heart of Darkness," Newsweek's Dahlia Lithwick takes a look at the new Supreme Court term opening in October and laments how the general public generally approves of the Court's job.
Don't be fooled, average Joe American, Lithwick pleads in her October 5 printe edition column (published on the Web site on September 24), for the Roberts court is a right-wing ally of big business and enemy of the Earth (emphasis mine):
The "Killing Granny" link takes readers to a September 21 print edition article by Evan Thomas which is more measured in tone than the sensational headline suggests, but one that nonetheless laments how Medicare, presently structured, has a built-in bias towards heavy per-patient spending with too little government bureaucrat oversight (emphasis mine):
After plugging his latest column in a September 10 post on the magazine's Swampland blog, Time's Joe Klein (shown in file photo at right) pegged Rep. Joe Wilson (R-S.C.) as "vile" before defending taxpayer-funded health care for illegal immigrants:
On this whole question of whether illegal immigrants will be included in the plan, which caused the vile Congressman from South Carolina to shout "You lie" when the President said they wouldn't be covered. Why shouldn't they be? After all, when an illegal immigrant cuts his hand while chopping cabbage and goes to the emergency room, the rest of us pay for it. Isn't the point to expand the risk pool as much as possible, to lure the insurance companies into concessions and lower prices?
I know it 's not going to happen. Congress will never vote to subsidize the health care of those who arrived here illegally. But, given the fact that we're already subsidizing them through the back door, it does make sense, doesn't it?
"[I am] against this most monstrous of all meddling on the part of authority: the meddling with the subsistence of its people. . . . [One must] manfully . . . resist the very first idea, speculative or practical, that it is within the competence of government . . . to supply the poor with necessaries. . . . To provide for us in our necessities is not in the power of government. It would be a vain presumption in statesmen to think they can do it." -- Edmund Burke, 'Thoughts and Details on Scarcity', 1795.
Jon Meacham strikes me as a knowledgeable man. Surely the author of a well-regarded biography of Andrew Jackson knows his history. Ignorance thus cannot explain how the Newsweek editor could with a straight face describe Barack Obama as "the real Burkean in American politics right now." Yet on today's Morning Joe, Meacham effectively depicted Obama as the bearer of the torch of the man often described as the father of modern conservatism . . .
Mark Hemingway at the Corner followed up on an item at Jules Crittenden's blog late last night.
What perked Hemingway's interest was Mr. Crittenden's relay of the following yesterday concerning an exchange during NPR's Diane Rehm Show:
Newsweek’s Ed Klein (told interviewer) Katty Kay about Kennedy’s love of humor. How the late senator loved to hear and tell Chappaquiddick jokes, and was always eager to know if anyone had heard any new ones. Not that Kennedy lacked remorse, Klein quickly added, seeming to intuit that my jaw and perhaps those of other listeners had just hit the floorboards. I gather it was a self-deprecating maneuver on Kennedy’s part, exercised with the famous Kennedy charm, though it sounds like one of those “I guess you had to have been there” things.
Hemingway went and listened. There is a 1:40 YouTube posted of what he heard.
Here is the transcript of that clip, without wrap-up niceties:
"Edward Kennedy, perhaps more than any United States senator in the past half century, cared about the poor and dispossessed. Though he was relentlessly mocked by the right as a tax-and-spend liberal, he kept the faith."
Thus wrote Newsweek's Evan Thomas of the late Edward M. "Ted" Kennedy today in an obituary that acknowledged and in places excused the late senator's sins even as it remembered him as a saint of secular liberalism.:
Kennedy became known on Capitol Hill for his antics. In a Washington Monthly essay titled "Kennedy's Woman Problem, Women's Kennedy Problem," author Suzannah Lessard accused Kennedy of "a severe case of arrested development, a kind of narcissistic intemperance, a huge babyish ego that must be constantly fed." More like it, a huge sadness that needed to be blotted out by sex and alcohol.
Thomas did acknowledge Kennedy's actions in the Chappaquiddick incident and how his delay in alerting police may have cost Mary Jo Kopechne her life, but then ridiculously added:
From the Exxon Valdez oil spill in 1989 to the high gas prices of 2008, the mainstream media has spent years finding ways to bash ExxonMobil. But here’s something the media should have a hard time finding fault with Exxon for: in its August 24 issue, Forbes magazine named ExxonMobil the “Green Company of the Year.” Forbes’ Christopher Helman praised the oil and gas company for its efforts to go green. And it’s about time ExxonMobil got some positive press.
Helman praised the company because “ExxonMobil’s real thrust into green energy is a big bet on natural gas.” Exxon is currently finishing up a multibillion dollar project in Qatar that will be the home of the largest natural gas field in the world. “Per unit of energy delivered, methane releases 40% to 50% less carbon dioxide than coal and a quarter less than petroleum,” Helman explained. Exxon also is putting millions into algae farms that will produce automotive fuel from sunlight. The latter project Helman described as “purely political” – a not-very realistic move to buy “ExxonMobil some peace with environmentalists.”
On today's Morning Joe, host Joe Scarborough was shocked to hear from Mark Halperin of Time and co-host Mika Brzezinski that most people in the MSM don't admit that the press is biased, and to the contrary most in the MSM see themselves as "right down the middle."
JOE SCARBOROUGH: So you're saying that most people in the mainstream media don't admit that the press is biased?
MARK HALPERIN: I don't think so. You take a survey around the news room --
MIKA BRZEZINSKI: No, they don't admit it: I agree that.
Harold Pollack dispenses with them (and their sources) here.
Tumulty failed to mention the liberal bent of either TNR or Dr. Pollack (Ph.D., not M.D.), which would have been helpful considering her terse blog post practically amounted to an unqualified stamp of approval of Pollack's August 4 item.
Albeit in kinder, gentler language, Pollack posited that opposition to socialized medicine among American senior citizens was due to racism, xenophobia, and homophobia (emphasis mine):
Subtitled: "Washington is spending $60 billion to create the careers of the future, but not a single green job yet exists. Obama's 'green czar' explains."
The Leftist publication deserves some plaudits for exploring this $60 billion gaping hole in the $787 billion "stimulus" package President Barack Obama signed into law in February. But there are many points in the article where they could have done better.
It would have been nice, for instance, if Newsweek had exhibited some of the scrutiny they show here in advance of the massive plan's passage. They begin with an interesting realization:
It worked for President Barack Obama in the 2008 presidential election, when he took tax cuts - a conservative issue - and made it his own. Now, liberals are employing a similar tactic in promoting their health care agenda.
But Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wisc., isn't having it. He called out Katrina vanden Heuvel, editor of the left wing The Nation magazine and MSNBC guest co-host, for attempting it in questioning him in a MSNBC segment on July 29. vanden Heuvel asked Ryan why he was against a so-called public health insurance option. His opposition, she reasoned, would deny consumers the choice of a public option in the marketplace.
"Rep. Ryan, that sounds like an anti-competitive vote," vanden Heuvel said. "Competition is at the heart of America and to deny Americans competition by denying them an option of a public plan seems to me un-American."
Did someone make this "Declare Your Devotion To a Dem Day" at MSNBC? You have to wonder. During the network's noon hour, Dr. Nancy Snyderman declared herself a "big fan" of HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.
Not to be outdone, during the following hour Andrea Mitchell ended her interview with Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Ia.) by thanking him profusely—and I mean at length—for having pushed through passage of the Americans With Disabilities Act 19 years ago today.
Imagine the post-oil apocalypse, with modern American society heading into a direction with no Disney vacations, no airlines - a world devoid of one-stop convenient big retailers. Sounds like a desolate place, but that's an ideal society according to Forbes magazine Christopher Steiner.
Steiner appeared on NBC's July 24 "Today" and described a world with gas headed to $20 a gallon, but according to him it wouldn't necessarily be a bad thing.
"Well, it's important to understand that $20 per gallon, those types of figures, those are a couple decades away," Steiner said. "But what's important to understand is that we are running out of oil. Over the next 30 years, you're talking about another 2 billion people entering the globe living American-style lives. Right now there's only a billion of those people on the globe and those people are going to want oil. And so our supply is going to slowly go down and demand's going to go up."
In a day dedicated to overcoverage of the Michael Jackson memorial service in Los Angeles (complete with Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson on the morning shows today dismissing any notion that the pop star ever had an unhealthy relationship with children), some on the left are championing the freakish side of Michael and bashing the rest of America as sick.
At The Nation magazine, Laura Flanders dug up a 1985 tribute by gay black author James Baldwin:
"The Michael Jackson cacophony is fascinating in that it is not about Jackson at all," Baldwin wrote. "All that noise is about America, as the dishonest custodian of black life and wealth....the burning, buried American guilt; and sex and sexual roles and sexual panic; money, success and despair…"
Baldwin put his finger on it: we're provoked -- and call "unstable" those who actually destabilize us. While Jackson may have been struggling with his own demons, he powerfully stirred up ours.
"Freaks are called freaks and are treated as they are treated -- in the main, abominably" continued Baldwin, "Because they are human beings who cause to echo, deep within us, our most profound terrors and desires."
And they says bloggers are news-lite. The latest issue of Details magazine carries this ludicrous headline on the top of the cover: "Can Obama Make You Better In Bed?" Inside is an article suggesting that "from the way we wear our suits to the way we relate to our wives, somehow American men are acting a little more like 44."
This is, as you might suspect, the work of a magazine just making wild generalizations about American manhood with bold assertion and zero research. Men may have favored McCain last November, "But it might not matter all that much, because in voting for a radically different avatar of American masculinity, we were, in a way, voting for Barack Obama to change us. Which is exactly what he's doing." (Italics theirs.)
Then we’re subjected to the idea that Obama has arrived to overcome the "overcompensating masculine drag" of the Bush-Cheney era: