Earlier this month, the Archdiocese of Boston felt that a special mass at St. Cecilia's Church in Boston to "commemorate Boston Pride 2011" would give parishioners and the public the false impression that the Church was endorsing the city's annual Gay Pride festivities and its accompanying messages (e.g., acceptance of gay 'marriage'). It therefore asked the parish to postpone the liturgy to a different date. The priest, obedient to his local bishop, obliged.
Dennis Cauchon at USA Today has been one of a very few establishment press reporters willing to expose federal workers' disproportionate pay and benefits (previous examples here and here) as well as Uncle Sam's precariously dangerous financial situation.
Cauchon has two USAT items today on the latter topic (HT to NB commenter Gary Hall): "U.S. funding for future promises lags by trillions," which reports that federal obligations totaled $61.6 trillion as of September 2010, a $5.3 trillion increase from a year earlier, and "Government's Mountain of Debt," which itemizes those obligations by major source.
Unsurprisingly, 75% of federal obligations, or a combined $46.2 trillion (actually more, which will be seen at the end of this post), relate to Social Security and Medicare, which no one but a few deluded leftists believe (or pretend to believe) are sustainable in their current form. Unfortunately, at the end of his first story, Cauchon quoted one of them, Michael Lind, whom the USAT reporter described as "policy director at the liberal New America Foundation's economic growth program," who said the following:
"Today on the program, we'll ask whether Americans are losing the skills of true debate and with it a central pillar of this democracy," BBC's Jonny Dymond informed listeners of the May 15 "Americana" podcast.
Yet when it came to Dymond's guests, there was no dissent from the liberal line.
Take guest Charles Pierce, a Boston Globe columnist and author of "Idiot America: How Stupidity Became a Virtue in the Land of the Free."
During his segment, Pierce decried the state of debate in America over global warming lamenting that "it is impossible to accept the reality of global climate change and get nominated in the Republican Party."
A round-up from over the weekend of journalists denouncing Republican Congressman Paul Ryan for not including a big tax hike in his deficit-reduction plan and discrediting the Tea Party’s pressure on House Speaker John Boehner as a “far right” impediment to good government.
“He doesn't deal with the revenue side at all,” despaired Newsweek veteran Evan Thomas on Inside Washington, arguing: “We cannot survive on 18, his goal is to do 18 percent of GDP as revenue. That's not enough. We're going to have to raise some taxes...”
On HBO’sReal Time with Bill Maher on Friday night, Katty Kay, anchor of BBC’s World News America, echoed, “He does nothing on the revenue side,” fretting: “There is this allergy, amongst Republicans, about saying ‘you know what, we actually do have to deal with taxes too.’”
Juan Williams charged “the rich get off like scoundrels,” complaining onFox News Sunday that Ryan is “not doing anything in terms of raising taxes.” Williams also worried: “John Boehner now has the Tea Party wrapped around his neck like an albatross.”
If you need any more evidence of the blatant animus that a mainstream newspaper like the Boston Globe can have for conservative Republicans, here you go. Compare the following:
Sean Bielat was the Republican challenger to Rep. Barney Frank in the 4th Congressional District in Massachusetts last November. While spending ten months to run for the seat, he paid himself a salary of $10,000.
Mac D’Alessandro, a self-identified "progressive Democrat," was a primary challenger in the 9th District. The Globe heartily endorsed D'Alessandro, a "public-interest attorney," "community activist," and political director for the SIEU. Even though his campaign barely lasted five months (he lost the primary), he collected stipends totaling nearly $27,000.
With the unveiling of Obama's 2012 budget today, some newspapers around the country framed the $3.7 trillion proposal as a serious attempt to slash the federal deficit.
The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, the Daily Herald, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, and the DC Express, couched the administration's massive budget as a fiscally responsible plan that makes "deep" and "big" cuts to "rein in deficits."
Several media outlets are trumpeting a recent study out of Denmark that asserts that having an abortion does not increase the risk of mental health problems for women. Yet there are serious problems with the study that major media are not reporting:
1. The Danish study flies in the face of over 30 professional studies just in the past five years that conclude that there is a serious negative mental health impact on women who have abortions. The list of those studies is at the site of the Elliot Institute, TheUnChoice.com. Not one major media outlet reported this.
1. "A [newly released] General Accountability Office (GAO) investigation has found that people with histories of sexual misconduct are still getting hired by school systems across the [United States] ... The biggest problem may be 'passing the trash.' These were cases GAO found in which school systems just let suspected sexual offenders resign, and even wrote them glowing letters of recommendation, so they could find teaching jobs elsewhere."
2. "The Dublin (Ireland) Archdiocese should have taken action years earlier against Tony Walsh, probably the most notorious child sexual abuser among its priests, according to [a] commission investigating clerical child sex allegations in the archdiocese." The Church laicized Walsh (removed him as a priest) in 1995.
This past week, we learned that it was another year, another dive for newspaper circulations: 5% for dailies, and 4.5% on Sundays, according to the Audit Bureau of Circulations. That's not as bad as some past declines, but it's still going the wrong way.
As usual, they'll blame the Internet, and reject the possibility that persistent, pervasive bias and blind adherence to politically correct reporting priorities have anything to do with the results. But as I've similarly asked before, how does one explain away the fact that the only daily paper in the nation's top 25 that has shown consistent gains during the past several years is the (usually) fair and balanced Wall Street Journal?
Most readers are probably unaware that the first African-American woman to graduate from Harvard Medical School who was also the first female surgical intern at Boston City Hospital passed away this weekend.
I would suggest that the coverage is so quiet because Mildred Jefferson was also an important pro-life pioneer.
Though marred by the fact that she consistently characterized Ms. Jefferson as "antiabortion" instead of as "prolife," the obituary by Kathleen Burge at the Boston Globe captured much of the essence of this marvelous woman (bolds are mine):
In the past eight days, ABC News has filed twoshocking stories about "a serious epidemic" of sexual abuse and rape of children in Kenya. Not only did the network report that "over 1,000 teachers have been fired for sexually abusing girls over the last two years," but it also relayed systemic cover-ups, police corruption, and perpetrator interference.
And while the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and the Boston Globe have frantically and endlessly trumpeted decades-old abuse allegations in the Catholic Church from anywhere in the world, neither paper has found a single square inch to dedicate to these sickening new revelations.
The Boston Globe, long notorious as promoters of global warming doom and gloom -- see Ross Gelbspan, for example -- sometimes get embarrassed by the actual climate. On "The Green Blog," the Globe's Beth Daley projected that a "global warming double punch" could make Hurricane Earl much worse for Massachusetts -- except when it actually passed by, it turned out to be a dud for Bostonians and it could be watched on the coast with a glass of wine:
The large waves, storm surge, and flooding that Hurricane Earl will spawn as it strikes Massachusetts tomorrow night comes with an added dollop of trouble; Sea level rise.
Very gradual -- and in some cases accelerating -- rises in sea level off our coast over the last century will boost the height of Earl’s storm surge -- expected to be one to four feet -- meaning the wall of water will be able to travel that much farther inland and over higher elevations to flood basements, streets, and other low-lying areas....
Picking up on a nugget (my tweet) surprisingly included in a Wednesday Boston Globe article, on Thursday night FNC’s Bret Baier reported in his “Grapevine” segment: “President Bush is apparently more popular than President Obama on Martha's Vineyard – at least when it comes to clothing.” Baier relayed the day the First Family arrived on the Massachusetts island:
When the First Family vacationed there last year, Obama-themed trinkets were flying off the shelves. Now, the owner of a store called the Locker Room says this summer's best-selling shirt features Mr. Bush. And even Democrats are buying it. It reads: “Miss Me Yet? How's that Hopey-Changey Thing Working Out for Ya?”
Why is The Boston Globe sucking up to CNN? In an unsigned staff editorial on Tuesday, the Globe warned TV critics to "back off" CNN for hiring "fresher voices" like Eliot Spitzer, the disgraced ex-Governor of New York and pseudo-conservative Kathleen Parker. They strangely claimed that somehow Spitzer won't be partisan, but he will be "candid" -- like in his political career?? He's "forever marred" by his transactional sex, but also a superior host because of it?
Yes, Spitzer will forever be marred by his use of prostitutes, but the demise of his political career has freed him up to be far more candid than the average moonlighting politico. Parker, a voice of common-sense conservatism, is notable for her willingness to break with the GOP herd; in 2008, she wrote that Sarah Palin lacked important qualifications for national office.
Another Crossfire this won’t be: Spitzer and Parker will probably be unpredictable and sometimes contrarian. They might even agree on some things — an entirely welcome development. Throwing ideological chum to the partisan masses will always draw ratings, but it rarely leaves viewers better informed.
Anyone who thinks Client #9 isn't going to be a partisan Democrat isn't watching his recent TV appearances, attacking the GOP as the "party of nihilism." But the Globe mourns how Fox News and MSNBC are ruining the political culture, while CNN is a PBS-style oasis by comparison:
Preconceived notions are dangerous things in journalism. They cause one to assume facts that aren't in evidence, leading to false or incomplete results.
A classic example has played out in the nearly three months since Arizona passed its "1070 law." Among other things, it mandates that law enforcement officials verify citizenship status in situations involving police contact if they have a reasonable suspicion that someone is not in the country legally.
It seems that virtually everyone covering the story has been assuming that Arizona's law is the first of its kind. Well, maybe as a "law" it is. But in Rhode Island, of all places, Boston Globe reporter Maria Sacchetti finally noticed on July 6 (HT Hot Air) that police have been doing what Arizona will start doing on July 29 since 2008 as a result of a gubernatorial executive order:
R.I. troopers embrace firm immigration role In contrast to Mass., they report all who are present illegally
The GOP as the party of obstructionism: it's a tried and true media meme, but very often falls a tad short of the truth. Yet on occasion, even stubborn facts are not enough to dispel such accusations.
Some in the media have taken President Obama's recess appointment of Donald Berwick to the head of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services as an occasion to bash purportedly obstructionist congressional Republicans. Just one problem: the GOP didn't hold up the nomination.
In fact, Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, ranking Republican on the Senate Finance Committee, which would have had jurisdiction over Berwick's appointment, said he "requested that a hearing take place two weeks ago, before this recess." Presumably, Grassley wanted to shine light on some of Berwick's more controversial positions, such as support for the rationing of care and his advocacy of the use of the health care system to redistribute wealth.
No general should criticize his or her commander, and Gen. Stanley McChrystal is no exception. But the mainstream media is primarily concerned with the political fallout of McChrystal's apparent insubordination as revealed by a piece in Rolling Stone. They are not concerned with whether his critiques are accurate, in stark contrast to other military officers' critiques of war policy under the Bush administration.
During Bush's tenure, active duty generals that spoke out against administration policy were portrayed as courageous whistleblowers. Retired generals were treated as ever-wise sages of military policy. None were scrutinized as McChrystal, pictured right, has been in the hours since Rolling Stone released its article.
The most prominent active duty general to earn the media's affection was Gen. Eric Shinseki, current Secretary of Veterans Affairs (to the media's delight). He insisted in 2003 that, contrary to Defense Department policy as iterated by Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, the United States would need to send "hundreds of thousands" of troops to Iraq during the initial invasion. The media ate it up.
“8: The Mormon Proposition,” is a documentary detailing the large role the Mormon Church played in passing California’s Proposition 8 in 2008.That ballot initiative added an amendment to the state constitution defining marriage as exclusively between a man and a woman. While the media has naturally been praising the documentary, the movie is so biased that even some reviewers couldn’t avoid pointing out how one-sided it is.
Directed by Reed Cowan, the film first premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. “8: The Mormon Proposition” is narrated by Lance Dustin, who was the screenwriter for “Milk,” the movie about California’s first openly gay elected official.
The trailer features protestors, people upset about the passage of Proposition 8, and paints the Mormon Church negatively for influencing the outcome of Proposition 8.
That must have been the reaction yesterday of many liberal Boston Globe readers when they read what must have been to them some very painful truths in a Joan Vennochi column about denial of reality by government officials over who was behind the Times Square bomb plot. Vennochi could have also been writing about many in the mainstream media such as MSNBC's Contessa Brewer who were hoping it was a Tea Party member behind the plot:
AMERICANS CAN handle the truth. But when it comes to terrorist acts on American soil, government officials are reluctant to give it to us straight from the start.
Instant analysis of the Times Square bomb scare kicked off with the usual official disclaimers: Don’t presume a Muslim extremist had anything to do with it.
It was likely a “lone wolf’’ operation, suggested Senator Charles E. Schumer of New York, or, as New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg speculated, “somebody with a political agenda who doesn’t like the health care bill or something.’’ Janet Napolitano, secretary of Homeland Security, said it was being treated as a “potential terrorist attack’’ but it could be a “one-off’’ or isolated incident.
Update: The well-publicized announcement that Editor & Publisher was going to "cease operations" last December and that was stated as a given in the original version of this post was apparently premature, as it's still there on the web. E&P is also covering the circulation news (daily; Sunday; HT to a BizzyBlog commenter).
Advertising Age (AA) had the unenviable task (given that it's supposed to stay on its vendors' and customers' good sides) of figuring out a way to cast yet another dreadful newspaper circulation report in a non-negative light. The educated guess here is that most newspaper execs are not going to be wearing the button pictured at the top right very frequently during the foreseeable future.
Here are the figures cited by AA as overall newspaper circulation declines during the past five six-month ABC reporting periods (percentages represent declines from the same six-month period of the previous year) --
March 31, 2010: - 8.7% daily, -6.5% Sunday September 30, 2009: -10.6% daily, -7.5% Sunday March 31, 2009: - 7.1% daily, -5.4% Sunday September 30, 2008: -4.6% daily, -4.9% Sunday March 31, 2008: - 3.6% daily, -4.6% Sunday
Given the results, here is AA's headline, sub-headline, and "hey, it's not really that bad" first sentence:
HBO is airing a movie, “You Don’t Know Jack,” about the life of Dr. Jack Kevorkian (aka: “Dr. Death”), who enabled the suicides of more than100 terminally-ill people. But the movie is so one-sided that even many mainstream media reviewers couldn’t help but point it out. USA Today, The Los Angeles Times, and the Boston Globe all noted how the movie favored assisted suicides.
USA Today’s Robert Bianco complained, “But on the crucial social issue itself – a person's right to die and a doctor's obligation to assist – the film falls squarely and unfailingly on Kevorkian's side.”
According to Bianco, “Everyone who stands against him is either an idiot, a bigot, or a politically motivated hack.” He cautioned, “Take that as a dual warning: You don’t get balance, and that one-sided approach can’t quite support the film’s overextended, two-hour-plus length.”
Some reporters come to Tea Party rallies not so much to cover them as expose them as hypocritical. On Thursday, Boston Globe reporter David Abel began his story on protests starring Sarah Palin in Boston by highlighting the Shirk family, with ten home-schooled kids – and Medicaid health coverage.
For the Shirks, it was a day for their children to seek inspiration from Palin and the other speakers, who questioned Obama’s patriotism and at least one of whom referred to him repeatedly as Barack Hussein.
The couple, who rely on Medicaid for their health care, were also upset about the nation’s new health reforms.
When asked why her family used state-subsidized health care when she criticized people who take handouts, Valerie Shirk said she did not want to stop having children, and that her husband’s income was not enough to cover the family with private insurance.
The Boston Globe is a proudly liberal newspaper. So it’s a little stunning for their staff writers Christopher Muther and Hayley Kaufman to suggest that tax refunds are best spent on conspicuous consumption. They suggested “you may want to put any windfall toward your credit card bill,” but they didn’t suggest liberal Globe readers redistribute their refund income to the poor in the inner cities, in Appalachia, or in earthquake-stricken Haiti. They suggested people drop a grand on looking “like a demi-goddess” in thousand-dollar shoes.
Muther and Kaufman began: “It's not exactly found money, but the tax refund that may eventually surface in your mailbox gives you a prime opportunity to indulge in those long-delayed purchases, such as the pair of shoes that have been whispering your name, or the fragrance that has been winking at you from across the cosmetics counter.” Many items on their list were under $100, but then there were these:
Clash of the Titans'' has nothing on these. Look like a demi-goddess in the Quartz Patent Leather gladiator bootie, from Jimmy Choo, $995.
Now that spring is here, you'll need chic specs for your al fresco adventures. These will have you looking like a star. Develay sunglasses in emberwood, from Paul Smith, $255.
Upon further research and examination into the Army's complete findings on the Fort Hood shootings, in a February 22 report, the Boston Globe's Bryan Bender conceded that politically-incorrect conservatives were right all along - just not in those words of course.
Immediately after Major Nidal Malik Hasan murdered 13 U.S. soldiers November 5, major news networks and publication bent over backwards to omit Hasan's Islamic identity or to excuse the killing of 13 soldiers as a result of stress or psychosis.
Report after report, interview after interview, and press conference after press conference, reporters, politicians, and government officials warned against jumping to conclusions - in spite of overwhelming evidence to the contrary.
In a contribution to the Boston Globe Magazine published nine days before the January 19 Senate election won by Republican Scott Brown, veteran Globe Magazine writer Charles Pierce ridiculed the idea Brown could win, in a piece formulated as a letter to Brown:
Well, we’re almost here, aren’t we? The end of a long, arduous, four-month campaign for a Senate seat that you have approximately the same chance of filling as you did the pilot’s chair of the Starship Enterprise.
The cocky Pierce wasn’t done, writing in his weekly “Pierced” column toward the front of the January 10 magazine:
The notion that Massachusetts would elect a Republican to fill the seat left vacant by Edward Kennedy was the property of people who buy interesting mushrooms in interesting places. You might as well expect the House of Windsor to be succeeded on the British throne by the Kardashian sisters.
Some in the liberal media continue to insist that James O'Keefe and his three cohorts were trying to "bug" or "tap" Sen. Mary Landrieu's phone lines when law enforcement officials have clearly said that they were not. Since the left doesn't like O'Keefe, the liberal media seems to think standard practices of journalistic integrity don't apply here.
According to MSNBC, one law enforcement official, who was not named, said "the four men arrested for attempting to tamper with the phones in the New Orleans office of Sen. Mary Landrieu (D) were not trying to intercept or wiretap the calls." This statement comports with the affidavit filed in court after O'Keefe and company were arrested, which did not mention wiretapping or bugging, and only referred to the "tampering" of phone lines (h/t Patterico).
But the Boston Globe parroted this false accusation this morning in a gossip blog post about one of the alleged perpetrators, Joe Basel. The Globe--the same Globe that complained about ACORN's "trial-by-video"--called him a "political dirty trickster who was busted in a Watergate-style bugging operation earlier this week," and said again a couple paragraphs later that Basel was "bagged by the feds allegedly trying to bug the phones" in Landrieu's office. At least the Globe writers said "allegedly" the second time.