In a story appearing this morning at the Politico about the Department of Justice's broad and unannounced subpoenas of the April and May 2012 personal and business phone records of reporters and editors at the Associated Press involving 20 phone lines and involving over 100 reporters and editors, James Hohmann found several "veteran prosecutors" who aren't necessarily outraged by what most members of the press and several watchdog groups have declared a blatant overreach. Instead, Hohmann summarizes their "far more measured response" as: "It’s complicated."
Hohmann utterly ignored a May 15 Washington Post story which chronicled claimed discussions between AP and government officials. Ultimately, it appears that the Obama administration's Department of Justice under Eric Holder may have only gone after AP out of spite because the wire service refused to accommodate administration requests to allow it time to crow about foiling a terrorist plot before the story gained meaningful visibility, and not because the release of the story, especially after what appears to have been an appropriate and negotiated delay, represented a genuine security risk. One obvious unanswered question is why DOJ waited, according to the AP's Mark Sherman in his original story, until "earlier this year" to obtain the phone records if it was so darned important to find out who the alleged leaker was.
Appearing as a guest on Thursday's PoliticsNation show on MSNBC, Washington Post columnist Dana Milbank mocked House Republicans for repeatedly holding unsuccessful votes to repeal ObamaCare as he suggested they should continue to "waste" time so "they'll be less of a harm to the country" because that way "they're not cutting food stamps." Milbank:
When ultraliberal Henry Waxman ran the House Government Reform Committee, The Washington Post didn't often suggest he was a fierce partisan or ideologue. Instead, former Washington Post managing editor Robert Kaiser praised him in a book review headlined "Moustache of Justice." (The Waxman lovers even have a mug.)
Kaiser cooed, “Henry Waxman is to Congress what Ted Williams was to baseball -- a natural....Waxman has been one of the most effective members of Congress for 35 years....This is the voice of David, whose career has featured the slaying of one Goliath after another.” This is not how the Post is treating Waxman’s "feverish" successor Darrell Issa.
“President Obama has called for creation of a government wide strategy ‘to address any gender pay gap in the Federal workforce.'" Eric Yoder of the Washington Post noted in a May 14 article. That's all well and good, but nowhere in Yoder's story did he consider that there's a pay disparity problem in the White House and in Senate Democratic offices, according to investigations by the Washington Free Beacon.
As the Obama administration’s Benghazi narrative begins to crumble, they’ve decided to recycle old talking points in the hope that the news media won't fact-check them.
On May 13, during a press conference, President Obama said, “The day after it [Benghazi] happened, I acknowledged that this was an act of terrorism.” The Washington Post’s Glenn Kessler – in this instance – should be commended for calling Obama’s statement for what it is: a lie. Kessler listed three instances after the attack where Obama failed to call it a terrorist attack:
It's just so unfortunate that such nice guys are going through such trying circumstances.
That's the impression one gets from graphic teases seen at about 9:30 this morning at the Washington Post, where the captions underneath the three left thumbnails read as follows: "President Obama’s disastrous political week"; "Jay Carney’s tough day"; and "Jay Carney’s day — in 7 faces." If you don't recall such an obvious outward show of sympathy during the final year of George W. Bush's presidency, you're not alone. A quick look at the underlying items follows the jump.
"Many small-business owners worry that a new tax on insurance providers in the health-care law will mean higher premiums for them, undermining the law's capacity to lower their health-care costs," Washington Post staff writer J.D. Harrison opened his 15-paragraph May 13 story, "Small-business owners dread impact of health insurance tax." The website headline was even starker: "Health insurance tax ‘scares the daylights’ out of some small-business owners."
Unfortunately for print edition, readers, Post editors buried this front-page-worthy article on page A15. Yes, today's front page was mostly populated with meaty, hard-news stories, but a large photo from last night's Capital-Rangers hockey game dominated the center of the page while London bureau chief Anthony Faiola's "Letter from Britain" feature, headlined, "Eurovision drought feels like a hard day's night," was published directly beneath that [see image following page break].
Scandalous news that the Internal Revenue Service intimidated nonprofit opponents of the Obama administration made page 11 of Saturday's New York Times.
The IRS apology to Tea Party and other conservative organizations for politically motivated targeting of their nonprofit status was dealt with in mild fashion by reporter Jonathan Weisman, though not on the front page. "I.R.S. Apologizes to Tea Party Groups Over Audits of Applications for Tax Exemption." The same audits that were applauded last year by the Times' s editorial page. And a Monday front-page follow-up was topped with what even liberal journalists found a bizarre headline: "IRS Focus on Conservatives Gives GOP an Issue to Seize On." That's the story?
Washington Post sports columnist Mike Wise was obnoxious enough when he was mocking the Old Testament and the Ten Commandments, but in Sunday's paper, he tries to be humorous by suggesting how Washington Nationals star Bryce Harper at age 20 is greater than most of our greatest humans when they were 20: better than Thomas Edison, better than Albert Einstein, better than Gandhi, and better than Franklin Roosevelt.
That may be true in history, but then Wise had to drag in Jesus Christ. How do you compare God to a baseball star? But Wise just thinks religion is something he can pick on weekly:
The Arts section of Sunday’s Washington Post was dominated by articles analyzing the cultural importance of the Ballet Russes and its role in European modernism. For Post dance critic Sarah Kaufman, it represented “The ascent of men, the haven for gays.”
This ballet troupe was a “tremendous force in modern art and modern mores” all the way back in the 1920s, as the focus on male dancers and the ballet's sexual sensibility could represent “one big orgy” or “a living wet dream”:
ABC and the Washington Post are happy to join the war on the Boy Scouts, pushing every church in America that sponsors a Scout troop to alter their Bibles for the gay agenda. The Post headline on Saturday was "Poll: Most Americans support lifting ban on gay Boy Scouts."
The pollsters did not ask if Americans would also like ending the "bans" in other American social organizations and faith groups. Why can't avid barbecuers join PETA? Freedom of association -- whoever said that was an American principle?
The new Natalie Maines record is continuing to spur music writers to slam the "cowardice" of the country-music industry and the stuffiness of the country-music audience in the aftermath of Maines trashing President Bush at a London concert on the eve of the Iraq war.
On the NPR show "Fresh Air" on Wednesday, music critic Ken Tucker insisted Maines was just ahead of where the majority would arrive on Bush's wrong-headedness:
Birtherism isn't all that bad to the liberal media when a rising conservative star may be the target. Just ask the Washington Post and the New York Times, two liberal papers that devoted serious attention to the question of whether Cruz might be constitutionally ineligible for the presidency.
Post staffers Ed O’Keefe and Aaron Blake devoted an article to the matter in the May 7 paper's Style section: the question of Cruz’s eligibility for the presidency. He was born in Canada, but had an American mother, thus making him eligible for 2016, but O'Keefe and Blake glommed on to the fact that the hypothetical objection that one must be born on American soil to be "natural born" has never been definitively adjudicated. This isn't isolated to the Washington Post.
Benghazi hearings open in the House on Wednesday, and the New York Times printed a preview on page 16 of Wednesday's edition that downplayed any possible revelations about the Obama administration's reaction to the terrorist attack, which killed ambassador Chris Stevens and three others. Testimony is expected by three State Department officials, led by U.S. diplomat Gregory Hicks, deputy mission chief in Tripoli, who said his pleas for military assistance were overruled.
Feeling reader pressure after the Washington Post led its Tuesday's edition by setting up the House hearings, Public Editor Margaret Sullivan addressed the issue on her blog Tuesday afternoon, posing a coverage question to Washington bureau chief (and former neoliberal economics reporter) David Leonhardt, who didn't anticipate hearing much new on Wednesday:
The Washington Post reported Mark Sanford’s “easy victory” in a special-election vote for Congress to replace now-Sen. Tim Scott. This had to be disappointing for columnist Dana Milbank, who predicted just last Thursday that “South Carolinians, asked to cross the line with Sanford on Tuesday, are likely to tell him to take a hike.”
The Post tried to paint Sanford as a goner. The only time his race made the front page in the last month was a Karen Tumulty story on April 18 headlined “Trespassing case, GOP's pullout rattle Sanford's bid.” You could smell the morning toast:
The Washington Post and reporter Dan Zak returned to bowing before the radical-left “Prophets of Oak Ridge” as their trial began Tuesday. The protesters broke into a nuclear-weapons production facility last July and hammered a wall and vandalized it with human blood. The headline at the top of Wednesday’s Style section was “Protest and protocol vie in anti-nuclear activists’ Tenn. trial.”
Zak began by putting the leftists on the side of “morality and conscience” and the national-security apparatus on the side of “protocol and budgets.” That’s funny, we could have put our nation’s defenders on the side of “morality and conscience,” and these radicals on the side of “vandalism and political exhibitionism” (or just “breaking and entering”):
Appearing on NBC's Chris Matthews Show on Sunday, Washington Post columnist David Ignatius initially dismissed the Benghazi terrorist attack as being "Fox News's super-story," with left-wing host Matthews agreeing: "This is a big Fox story." Fellow Post columnist Kathleen Parker called out Ignatius: "I know Fox has been covering it, but, you know, that doesn't mean it's wrong." Ignatius acknowledged: "It doesn't mean it's wrong." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
Parker, who prompted discussion of the topic, told Matthews: "I knew you were going to roll your eyes on this, but I think it makes you look good to at least mention it on your show." Matthews replied: "David's also rolling his eyes." Ignatius denied the charge, declaring: "No, I think this is, Benghazi is a serious story." Parker prodded him: "Could you say that a little louder, please?" Ignatius reiterated: "Benghazi is a serious story."
It really is amazing how excited liberal media members can get when the economy produces 165,000 jobs and a 7.5 percent unemployment rate under a Democratic president.
So enthralled was Chris Matthews that he actually asked guests on the syndicated program bearing his name Sunday if this will give Democrats including Hillary Clinton "bragging rights" in 2016 (video follows with transcript and commentary):
The Sunday Outlook section of The Washington Post offered a list of “Spring Cleaning” items, “things to toss out.” Some were light topics: Jonathan Capehart picked summer “Flip-flops.” But former Post defense reporter Thomas Ricks suggested we toss Texas out of the USA. “I’m just sick of ‘em and all their BS,” he proclaimed.
“For decades, Texans have been clamoring about leaving the Union. Letting the Lone Star State secede would set a bad precedent. (See the Civil War of 1861 to 1865.) But what about expelling it instead? There is promise in that.” It’s because they’re conservative:
The Washington Post put a poll it doesn’t like on the front of Sunday’s paper: Six months before Election Day in the Virginia gubernatorial race, Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli “has a slender 46 to 41 percent edge over [Terry] McAuliffe (D) among all Virginia voters and a significant 51 to 41 percent lead among those who say they’re certain to cast ballots in November.”
The Post has tried for years to demonize Cuccinelli, so it can’t quite believe it. “But those numbers may change before then: The poll found that barely 10 percent say they are following the campaign ‘very closely’ and that nearly half of the electorate says they’re either undecided or could change their minds.” But Republicans are hardly undecided:
In this year's Virginia governor’s race, both party nominees are airing warm ads about family right now. GOP Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli has been accused of lacking warmth. But that’s nothing next to what Buzzfeed dug up in former DNC chair Terry McAuliffe’s 2007 memoir “What A Party!”
Andrew Kaczynski offered a story where McAuliffe went to a Washington Post party while his wife was in the hospital preparing to have a baby. Somehow, this slipped past the Post itself when it reviewed the book in 2007:
Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III started tongues wagging when he posted this cryptic message on Twitter: “In a land of freedom we are held hostage by the tyranny of political correctness.”
This was in response to liberal activists showing their rabid intolerance by demanding, so obnoxiously, that the Washington Redskins be renamed the “Redtails.” But the sentiment absolutely fits the reaction to professional basketball player Jason Collins proclaiming “I’m black and I’m gay” in Sports Illustrated.
Government bureaucrats often spend the taxpayers' money on the basis of rosy assumptions from tax revenue. Of course, in doing so, they sometimes get burned. But when they are, have no fear, because the Washington Post will lament their plight.
Such was the case recently with the Fairfax County, Va., school board, which the Washington Post gripes is left "with a $30 million shortfall" because the county's Board of Supervisors elected to raise property taxes by one cent per $100 of assessed value rather than two cents, as the county executive had originally hoped.
Washington Post media blogger Erik Wemple spends a lot of time picking apart Fox broadcasts, but he was stunned by a Thomas Roberts interview on MSNBC with the new leader of NARAL Pro-Choice America, Ilyse Hogue. She claimed “we were the first out of the gate to call attention to this case.” Like a news butler, Roberts set her up to make that bizarre claim and then moved on to the next publicist's softball.
Wemple shot back: “Having done precisely 3,454 Nexis and Internet search on the Gosnell case, we missed the part where NARAL had led a charge to highlight the alleged atrocities in West Philadelphia.” He kept searching, and NARAL’s new boss kept looking sillier and sillier:
Politico reported today that net income at The Washington Post Co. dropped an astonishing 85 percent from the first quarter of last year to the first quarter of this year. The newspaper division posted an operating loss of $34.5 million over that period.
It looks as if the Post, like many other newspapers around the country, may have entered an age of decline. Newspapers just aren’t as profitable as they once were. The proliferation of online news outlets has given consumers a plethora of free news sources to choose from. But another factor may be the Post's persistent liberal bias, which is a turnoff to potential conservative subscribers.
The Washington Post tiptoed gently on Friday around Joe Biden’s hopes of being elected president in 2016. “For Biden, dreams vs. realities” is the story’s headline, but at the very top of Page One, it says “At the top of his political game, the vice president shines as Obama’s personable No. 2. But events may conspire against a 2016 promotion.”
Post reporter Philip Rucker rather comically took 30 paragraphs to establish one series of “events” that threaten Biden are gaffes. The front page says Biden is a “long shot at best,” but insists he’s seen as “genuine, down-to-earth, rock solid on the issues" and “clearly has the experience and gravitas to ascend to the presidency.”
Last Friday, Obama made “history” by being the first president to address Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest purveyor of abortions. Obama did this in spite of the terrible timing, during the Kermit Gosnell trial. But like the Gosnell trial, Obama’s speech drew a blackout: no story on ABC, CBS, NBC, PBS, or NPR.
MSNBC's Chris Hayes hailed it was a "history-making" speech, but complained that Obama never used the A-word, which he should never feel ashamed to use. Rachel Maddow praised Obama for “putting a new capstone” on bold proclamations for the “right to choose.” USA Today and the Los Angeles Times somehow missed it. The New York Times blogged it – with this amazing paragraph from reporter Peter Baker as he mentioned Gosnell:
Woe unto you who haven’t joined the rhapsodic hymns to Jason Collins’ heroism and genuflected before the altar of diversity. You have incurred the wrath of Mike Wise.
The Washington Post sports columnist, who is rumored to sometimes write about sports, doesn’t like Christians or conservatives (“Bible-thumpers” to him and Charles Barkley), and he’s not shy about it. His May 1 column was a tour de force, dripping contempt for anyone not enthused that NBA player Jason Collins announced he’s gay.
The latest target for gun-control activists appears to be freshman Senator Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.). In strikingly similar articles appearing on May 1, the Washington Post hyped the “contentious political fight” over gun control, and Politico describing the “lingering controversy that continues to hover over the New Hampshire senator.”
The two articles try to portray Ayotte as at odds with the majority of Americans over the issue of expanding background checks, pushing flawed polling that show 88 percent of New Hampshire citizens supporting background checks. Neither the Post nor Politico mention that background checks already exist for the vast majority of gun purchases.