What's bothering the Los Angeles Times's Rosa Brooks now? She doesn't like how the McCain-Palin ticket has noted that Barack Obama said on the campaign trail that our troops in Afghanistan are "just air-raiding villages and killing civilians."
Story after story on the full-year results for the federal budget refers to the size of the full-year deficit for the fiscal year that just ended on September 30 ($455 billion), and how it compares to last year's deficit ($162 billion).
Almost none of them talk about why the deficit ballooned.
I wonder why?
Could it be because the Democrat-controlled Congress of Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid allowed spending to spiral out of control?
Rather than deliver a single revelation, the 24-hour cable news channel coughed up a reheated, overwrought and misleading story that seemed designed to yoke Sarah Palin and her husband to the most extreme secessionists in Alaska.
That's how Los Angeles Times's James Rainey characterized an October 14 effort by CNN's Rick Sanchez to portray Gov. Sarah Palin as a shady secessionist who would like to see Alaska break away from the United States. Sanchez even went as far as to raise the specter of Timothy McVeigh and the Oklahoma City bombing.
Rainey began his October 15 column, "CNN bid to tie Palin to secessionists is a stretch," by noting the Geraldo-like melodrama with which the network's Rick Sanchez teased the story of overblown political intrigue:
Poor Karl Ritter and Matt Moore of the Associated Press must have a lot of time to kill, a dearth of ideas, and a studied disinterest in accuracy as they await the awarding of the Nobel Prize for Economics in Stockholm, Sweden on Monday. A list of past winners is here.
Besides lamenting that no woman has ever won the Economics Prize (so?), the AP pair felt the need to relate the financial bailout passed by Congress and signed by the President a week ago, and the current steep stock market decline that followed it (or, as yours truly and Investors Business Daily would argue, occurred because of it), to who might win the award.
Along the way, they, as AP reporters are wont to do, erred, and quite seriously.
Here's how their report, weirdly entitled "Amid the meltdown, economics Nobel no easy pick," began (bold is mine):
The fervent cheerleading for Barack Obama by the Los Angeles Times continues to roar. We've documented the staunch pro-Obama position at the Times several times before: here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here - for starters. Now check out the images from today's front page (Sun. 10/12/08). While a comfortable Barack Obama happily basks in the sun in a bright backdrop of red, white, and blue, a frail-looking John McCain is pictured in the dark with a faint and blurry flag in the distance. Equal coverage? Not even close.
Over at the L.A. Times' The Dish Rag blog, Elizabeth Snead wonders how Newsweek got Governor Sarah Palin to pose "with a rifle" for the cover of its next issue? Snead then reveals that it was not a new photo but an old one, that the Governor did not pose for the cover at all, and wonders if it is right for the magazine to use the photo as they did? I suppose Snead wasn't really too worried about the photo, but she did just prove that she has no idea what a "rifle" is because Palin is holding a shotgun, not a rifle, in the cover photo.
Snead tries to give a ribbing to Governor Palin for holding the "rifle" over her shoulder with the barrel pointing toward the ground and the breech open with the shoulder stock draped over her left shoulder. Showing she has no idea how a firearm works, Snead wonders if Palin could "shoot" her "foot off like that?"
Remember the furor and the comedic punch lines as a result of Sarah Palin’s statement, implying that she needed someone to clarify the role of the Vice President?
Well, brace yourselves for a similarly overwhelming media reaction to Joe Biden’s solution on where one can locate the definition of the Vice President’s role – Article I of the Constitution.
Problem being, it’s actually Article II.
To most, this will simply constitute another famous Biden gaffe. However, Biden was so forceful and patronizing in his argument during last night’s debate that Dick Cheney should realize ‘Article I of the Constitution defines the role of the vice president,’ that it bears pointing out.
The full excerpt from the debate follows (h/t to Michelle Malkin):
The Los Angeles Times seems to have taken a sudden new interest in biblical study. No, they haven't become religious or anything close to that. Instead, they are microanalyzing the Bible for passages that they think they can use to slam Sarah Palin for running for vice-president. They are also searching the countryside to dig up the very few strongly religious Christians they can find who think Palin is wrong to run for public office. Let us now join Times reporter, Teresa Watanabe, as she begins her biblical studies in her story with an ulterior motive (emphasis mine):
In a white-steepled church along a stretch in picturesque canyon country, the preacher laid out the basic blueprint of a godly marriage: Husbands lead, wives submit.
See where this is going right from the get-go? The reporter is going to use the Bible to suggest to believers that Sarah Palin is violating the "basic blueprint of a godly marriage."
This has to rank as the all time most hypocritical piece I've yet seen featuring liberal finger waging at conservatives over their ire at the product of the leftist press. It is conservatives, you see, that have "have put the final nail in the coffin of truth," in essence killing the truth, not the left for doing its level best to eliminate the entire concept of truth. It is our fault for pointing out the liberal's efforts to destroy truth not theirs for having launched the campaign. How's THAT for spin?
The Times' Gregory Rodriguez gives us this convoluted logic in "When all truth is relative Conservatives play a dangerous game in attacking the media for bias" from September 29. In it, Rodriguez acknowledges that it is the left and our fetid universities that launched a campaign early last century to make truth relative or situational. But, instead of focusing on this illicit attack on truth, Rodriguez blames those pointing out the folly of relativity for causing what he sees as the downfall of truth. Yes, it's the watchdogs' fault, not the perpetrators!
Let's ask again: Where is the national media? The sex abuse scandals at the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) continue to grow. Just since May of this year:
A high school athletic coach was charged with 12 felony counts of sexually assaulting an underage girl, including "five counts of sexual penetration with a foreign object while the victim was unconscious and one count of possession of child pornography." "[P]olice said they believe there may be other victims." The man was also a special education assistant (link).
A high school principal was arrested for child pornography on his home computer. Authorities also discovered that he "had posed as a 12-year-old girl in an online chat room and engaged in sexually explicit talk."
A high school teacher pleaded guilty and was sentenced to six months in jail for having sex with a minor. County deputies found the teacher and the underage female student in the back of a car in a parking lot.
Imagine if Barack or Michelle Obama's e-mail had been hacked. Would the reaction from the folks at the Los Angeles Times be so muted? If an Obama were the victim, it's easy to picture Times editor Tim Rutten penning a hissy-fit op-ed, angrily demanding a federal investigation, and trying to formulate how the McCain campaign was directly involved.
The Times relegated the story of Palin's e-mail account being hacked to the "National Briefing" section, buried in the middle of page A16, with a puny 85 words, in Thursday's paper (9/18/08). (See the image of the story.)
The New York Times? The story didn't even make it to the actual paper; it only went as far as their blog.
Republican presidential nominee Sen. John McCain, Ariz., has acknowledged his technological shortcomings, but some in the media continue to portray him as a techno-phobe with no meaningful contributions to that sector of the economy.
The September 16 "NBC Nightly News" examined McCain's rhetoric on the campaign trail in the wake of a serious banking crisis. Correspondent Kelly O'Donnell reported one campaign advisor cited McCain's legislative effort opening the door to technological advancements as evidence of his ability to steer Americans through the turbulent time.
"And Brian, when an adviser today was stressing John McCain's economic credentials, he told reporters that McCain quote ‘helped make this little miracle happen' - the Blackberry or cell phone - citing his work on the Commerce Committee," O'Donnell said.
Johanna Neuman of the Los Angeles Times yesterday misrepresented First Lady Laura Bush's words to make it seem like she was backing away from GOP veep candidate Sarah Palin's criticism of Senator Barack Obama's community organizing days.
Recall, as I noted in the NewsBusters post "Media Freak Out Over Palin and Giuliani's ‘Community Organizer' Jabs" earlier today, that community organizing, in the sense that Obama, a Harvard-educated lawyer uses the term, is Saul Alinsky-style political organizing. It's not about church bake sales, picking up litter, little leagues, or parent-teacher associations. It's about agitation aimed at securing big chunks of government money and radical social change. It is not noble. It is radical left-wing activism. It is not community service. It's more like community destruction. Think Jesse Jackson. Think Al Sharpton. Think ACORN. Think Mother Jones.
If you needed any more evidence that the Democrats and their media minions are in a serious state of panic concerning the bounce that John McCain has gotten from Sarah Palin and a highly-successful convention, you need look no further than a blog posting by Time's Mark Halperin.
On Wednesday, Halperin, the magazine's editor-at-large and senior political analyst, wrote a piece delicously titled "(Near) Panic!!!" which linked to multiple media sources depicting serious consternation within the Obama campaign as well as Democrat circles concerning the groundswell of support for the Republican presidential ticket.
One source Halperin highlighted was a Los Angeles Times article entitled "Palin Bounce Has Democrats Off Balance" (emphasis added, picture courtesy Time.com):
Here's an irony to start your Iftar meal tonight: Saudi Arabia, where a woman must have permission from a male relative or her husband before traveling, will nevertheless run a Gloria Steinem column in its main English-language daily about the sufferings of American women (and their impending doom if Sarah Palin makes it to the White House).
To be fair to Steinem, the column first ran in the LA Times, but all the same, the irony may be the tastiest thing the veteran feminist has ever half-baked.
What's in a name? Well, if you'll excuse my Shakespeare, what's in a name is a certain level of respect. And in the pursuit of straight news a person's name should be presented without sarcastic manipulation as well as with proper titles affixed. For instance, Hillary Clinton is properly either Mrs. Clinton or Senator Clinton. On the other hand, calling Hillary "Her Thighness" is not appropriate in a straight news story. It may be funny, of course, but it is not proper nor does it show the respect due the woman. (I know, I'm a killjoy) So, why does the New York Times and the L.A. Times both so often call Governor Sarah Palin Ms. all the time?
Could it be that they wish to subtly bestow as much disrespect as possible in their news stories on McCain's VP pick without going as far as calling her a name like the sarcastic jab "Her Thighness" might serve for Hillary? Could it be these supposedly serious news sources wish to attack Governor Palin and they don't think anyone will notice the slight of her marriage by the misuse of the title Ms.?
The bias on this one pretty much speaks for itself. In yesterday's Los Angeles Times (Fri. 9/5/08), following the last day of the RNC, the paper published article with the title, "Before Palin, Republicans Had Quayle" (click to see the image). Big hat tip to Patterico, who asked, "Could the L.A. Times’s desperation be any more obvious?"
Looking at how the Los Angeles Times covered day two of the Democratic convention versus day two of the Republican convention:
Wednesday, August 27, 2008, following day two of the DNC: The headline is "Clinton calls on her party to end her rift" (click to see the image). A large, full-color Convention photo of Hillary and Chelsea Clinton graces the top of the front page. Inside: Five pages of coverage with 15 more photos (11 color, 4 b&w)
The pro-Obama and pro-Democratic bias at the Los Angeles Times has been very well documented here at NewsBusters. (See here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here - for starters.) Here's some more. Look at how the Times covered day one of the Democratic convention versus day one of the Republican convention:
Mercantilism [emphasis added]: An economic doctrine that flourished in Europe from the sixteenth to the eighteenth centuries. Mercantilists held that a nation's wealth consisted primarily in the amount of gold and silver in its treasury. Accordingly, mercantilist governments imposed extensive restrictions on their economies to ensure a surplus of exports over imports. In the eighteenth century, mercantilism was challenged by the doctrine of laissez-faire.
When Barack Obama talks—and talks—about the future, does he really mean "back to the future"? You have to wonder after reading the column by one of his economic advisors in today's LA Times. In Renewing America's 'contract with the middle class, Leo Hindery Jr. explicitly calls for a return to mercantilism, the discredited theory of economics popular during the 17th and 18th centuries. Hindery [emphasis added]:
It is imperative -- way past time, in fact -- for America to be as mercantilist as are our trading partners.
Wild swings in polling results have been an ongoing big story this election cycle. The LAT, as Dave Pierre pointed out a week ago, experienced a huge shift in their polling away from their man, Barack Obama, and were left scrambling to come up with a solution. But the LAT is not alone. Last month, P.J. Gladnick highlighted a similarly drastic shift in the Newsweek poll.
What, then, are we to conclude from this polling data? Are Newsweek and the LAT biased in favor of Barack Obama and other Democrats?
Now that Barack Obama has chosen Joe Biden to be his running mate, it will be interesting to see how some journalists will distance themselves from their own scathing opinions of Biden in the past. One such case is that of Jonathan Chait, The New Republic editor, who was very downbeat on Biden in a Los Angeles Times article published on February 4, 2007. Of course, back then it was "safe" to be honest about Joe Biden since it looked like his presidential bid was going nowhere. The very title of Chait's article, "Joe Biden’s just a barrel of gaffes," explains the problems the Obama campaign is going to have with the new vice-presidential pick. Back then Chait was very blunt about Biden's problems as a candidate:
...Biden’s charming cluelessness was on display in a recent ABC news interview. The famously verbose senator was asked to state in 25 words or less why Democrats should nominate him. His response was 45 words. I suppose that, by Biden’s standards, coming in at just under twice his allotted length counts as a victory of sorts.
Sometimes simply adding the link to our Editors' Picks sidebar just isn't enough. First reported by Luke Ford and confirmed by ERS News, it looks like LA Observed's Kevin Roderick's didn't actually share two Pulitzer Prizes after all.
You see, there's sharing and then there's sharing. In the first sense, we all "shared" in Kerri Walsh and Misty May-Treanor's Olympic Gold medal. In the second sense, the U.S. women's gymnastics team all shared the team's silver medal.
In 1993 and 1995, the Los Angeles Times "staff" won Pulitzers for the LA riots and the Northridge earthquake, respectively. The Pulitzer awards committee names "staff" as the recipient when contributors number more than three. With a dozen stories listed and over two dozen credited reporters and photographers, the LA Times's Pulitzers were awarded to "Staff," meaning the 25 or so credited participants. Roderick certainly "shares" the Pulitzer in the second sense, that it redounds to the good of the entire LAT, but in purely official terms--you know, the ones that make it alright to claim it on your resume--Roderick did not share the Pulitzers.
The L.A. Times' Rosa Brooks has done it again, taken a serious subject and made an uninformed romp of it. One wonders how the old Georgian lady seen in news photos standing wounded among the ruins of her apartment building, or the Georgian Mother running down the street, infant in her arms, trying to escape Russian tanks might feel about the humor with which Brooks brings to bear upon their plight? But, there it is for all to see in Brooks' "The Cold War, reheated" wherein Brooks puts the funny back in war. It's been too serious for too long for Brooks, apparently. We need the sunny side of ethnic cleansing, brutal invasion, and crushing occupation, don't we?
Oh, and let's not forget the skewed history, incorrect conclusions, and partisan inanities that Brooks blurted out with her little attempt at "Springtime for Gorbachev." Only with this production, Brooks is seriously trying to absolve the U.S.S.R.
[**UPDATE below**] The Los Angeles Times is still fighting for their man, Barack Obama. Last June, when their man's poll numbers looked groovy, the Times proudly trumpeted their presidential poll results with a just-the-facts headline, "Obama holds 12-point lead over McCain, poll finds." But now the paper's candidate of choice is in trouble. A new Los Angeles Times/Bloomberg poll shows John McCain and Barack Obama in a statistical dead heat, with Obama ahead 45% to 43%, within the three point margin of error.
So how does the Times frame the results of their new poll? "Barack Obama's image suffers amid John McCain attacks, poll finds" (see UPDATE below). Apparently, the Times has a hard time acknowledging that people are simply learning more about the candidates, and more are simply deciding that Obama is not their guy. The Times would rather blame Obama's receding lead on "attacks" by McCain.
Yesterday, in a stinging indictment of his Old Media colleagues' la-la-la treatment of the story of John Edwards's affair with Rielle Hunter, Los Angeles Times columnist Tim Rutten asserted that Edwards "may have ended his public life but he certainly ratified an end to the era in which traditional media set the agenda for national political journalism."
I'll get to Rutten's mostly perceptive points in a bit.
That's because recent developments indicate that Edwards may still be believe he can eventually re-enter public life, and they are relevant to Rutten's assertion:
The John Edwards admission yesterday that he did have an affair with his mistress opened up not only the floodgates of coverage which was previously in short supply on this issue in the mainstream media but also of a new candor by that same group. One such example of the latter was the startling praise given to the National Enquirer by Elizabeth Snead of the Los Angeles Times Dish Rag blog:
The National Enquirer tabloid is looking pretty darn legit right about now.
The story of the John Edwards and Rielle Hunter affair has pretty much been theirs and theirs alone since the tab first reported it last October. Recently, they reported that the former senator had been in the Beverly HIlton Hotel with Hunter and that he hid in the men's room of the hotel from their reporters.
Mark August 7, 2008 on your calendars. That was the day that the John Edwards scandal finally "pierced" the Los Angeles Times blogs following an earlier e-mail from Times editor Tony Pierce muzzling his staff (emphasis mine):
Because the only source has been the National Enquirer we have decided not to cover the rumors or salacious speculations. So I am asking you all not to blog about this topic until further notified.