On August 26 and September 2, the Washington Post refused to run the weekly "Opus" comic strip by cartoonist Berkeley Breathed out of concerns of insensitivity to Muslims. NewsBusters associate editor wrote about the controversy here and here, and MRC president and NewsBusters publisher Brent Bozell discussed the Post's double standard on religious sensibilities on Glenn Beck's CNN Headline News program.
Weeks after the controversy has subsided, NewsBusters reader Rusty Weiss shot me a message informing me that a classic "Bloom County" strip from Breathed in the September 28 edition of Yahoo Comics is quite appropriate coming on the heels of the controversy (see below fold for the comic strip). Writes Weiss:
MRC director of research and NewsBusters senior editor Rich Noyes appeared on Friday's "Fox & Friends" to discuss the MRC's statement calling on CBS and CNN to apologize to Fox News Channel's Bill O'Reilly.
Appearing in the 7:00 a.m. half-hour of Thursday's "Fox & Friends," Media Research Center president and NewsBusters publisher Brent Bozell noted that former "CBS Evening News" anchor Dan Rather is in utter "meltdown" over the National Guard hoax "although it's been proven documentably, no pun intended, to be false."
In the wake of the recent media-created scandal concerning statements made by Fox News host Bill O'Reilly on his radio show, a rather enlightening discussion has ensued regarding the existence of a well-organized campaign to demonize every television and radio personality whose political opinions don't march in lock-step with the left.
A rather frank and candid conversation concerning this matter occurred on Wednesday's "The O'Reilly Factor" between the host and outspoken radio talk show personality Tammy Bruce.
Katie Couric "really sounds like... a light-headed Hillary [Clinton] and it sounds like she's trying to claw back into the good graces of MoveOn.org and maybe she's trying to rub the belly of the Buddha, Frank Rich, and everybody who attacked her for being some sort of Bush tool when she went to Iraq."
That's how MRC director of media analysis and NewsBusters senior editor Tim Graham described Katie Couric's recent conversation with Marvin Kalb in which the CBS anchor laid out her liberal opinions of the Bush administration and the war in Iraq.
We knew that'd get you hooked. You can view the entire segment on the September 26 "Your World w/Neil Cavuto by checking out the Video (3:57):Real (2.91 MB) and Windows (2.43 MB), plus MP3 (1.80 MB).
Carter Wood of Shopfloor.org is not buying what Columbia Journalism Review is selling. Not after its smug, self-important pitch letter whining about supposed attacks on freedom of speech and press in America. Not after said sales pitch falls so close to Columbia welcoming dictator and enemy of press freedom Mahmoud Ahmadinejad:
Columbia Journalism Review picked an inauspicious time to be sending out subscription pitches to Journalism School alumni, coinciding with the debacle that was Ahmadinejad's appearance at the university.
Reading through the pitch letter (.pdf copy here) signed by CJR Editor Mike Hoyt, we were struck by the unremitting hostility it emits toward U.S. institutions, primarily the government but also business and religion. In CJR's world view, a journalist's responsibility is apparently to attack, attack, attack -- because the institutions being reported on are corrupt and a threat to our freedoms.
And the come-on leads with a preposterous assertion:
Are the producers and Barbara Walters over at TV's "The View" already about to dump a new View co-host over her controversial views? Rumors to that effect are beginning to leak out, anyway. While Rosie got well over a year to spout her anti-American, anti-Bush garbage before the folks at The View finally got motivated to dump her for a new hostess, it looks like the new gal isn't as lucky. What seems to have disgusted "The View's" backstage handlers this time is a perceived "conservative" doubting of evolution in favor of a religious viewpoint that Sherri Shepherd recently revealed in one of her early appearances.
So, at issue is the comment new Viewette Shepherd said about evolution. As Bill Zwecker, Chicago Sun-Times TV writer says:
From the birds-of-a-feather department comes news that former ABC "Nightline" host Ted Koppel is "hurting" for former CBS anchor Dan Rather.
The latter's ouster was a "travesty," Koppel said, on account of the fact that Rather's infamous National Guard story was "much more correct than incorrect." More:
“Dan Rather was squeezed out” with such little class from CBS News, Mr. Koppel said today at a forum at Fordham University in New York City that was put on by the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.
As NewsBuster John Stephenson reported Monday, a Politico column by Ben Smith revealed that the Clinton campaign apparently forced GQ magazine to not publish a negative piece about Hillary if they wanted future access to Bill.
Los Angeles Times reporter Matt Lait failed to inform readers that a critic of overcrowded jails is himself a convicted felon. [No, this is not a NewsBusted joke but check the bottom of the post if you want to make it one.]
What's more, Stephen Yagman is no petty one-time offender, notes Patterico:
There’s just one little thing about Yagman that The Times’s Matt Lait neglects to mention: Yagman is going to have a hard time continuing to represent these inmates . . . because he has been convicted of numerous felonies in federal court, and is likely headed to federal prison.
Indeed, the State Bar has taken notice, and has put Yagman on interim suspension. As the Metropolitan News-Enterprisereported on September 14:
When liberal journalists put on their political pundit hats to ostensibly handicap the policy stances of Republican politicians, you can rest assured that conservative or center-right stances will almost always be panned as political/electoral suicide.
Time magazine's Karen Tumulty is no exception in her recent Swampland blog post, "SCHIP: A Really Dumb Fight for Bush to Pick." in which the veteran reporter took President Bush to task for his veto threat for Democratic legislation that seeks to expand the size and mandate of the federally-backed State Children's Health Insurance Plans (SCHIP).
Most folks by now are certainly aware of the infamous taser incident that happened Monday at the University of Florida.
In a somewhat stunning aftershock (pun intended!), the editorial board of Colorado State University's student-run paper has offered possibly the finest example of Bush Derangement Syndrome to date by actually blaming this incident on - wait for it! - the current President of the United States.
Isn't that special?
Yet, even better was the simplicity of their statement, and the vulgarity included which will follow after the break so that only those who choose to be offended will be (h/t NBer wiwf):
As characteristically strange and bizarre as Dan Rather's lawsuit against CBS is, chances are high that CBS is going to give him some kind of concession, monetary and otherwise.
Neil Cavuto, host of FNC's "Your World" made this point earlier this week stating that CBS has no real alternative other than a long, dragged out court case that will rehash its worst corporate moment. He's right:
Dan Rather is going to win.
I don't know if he's going to get the 70 million bucks he's demanding from CBS.
"As a public relations effort, I mean, this is like the litigation equivalent of a suicide bombing. It just doesn't make any sense," noted MRC director of media analysis Tim Graham about former "CBS Evening News" anchor Dan Rather's lawsuit against CBS. The NewsBusters senior editor was interviewed shortly after 5:30 p.m. Eastern on Thursday's "Big Story" by Fox News reporter Heather Nauert.
Video (3:04):Real (2.24 MB) and Windows (1.87 MB), plus MP3 audio (1.39 MB). [related links listed below fold]
The statements in Dan Rather's $70 million lawsuit, filed Wednesday against CBS for terminating him nearly two years after his discredited story on President Bush's National Guard service, reflect a conspiratorial paranoia about how he sees himself as a victim of Bush White House pressure and is unable to accept responsibility for his sloppy and politically-driven story.
The former network star charged that he was made a "scapegoat" for the 2004 story because CBS wished to "pacify the White House." CBS management "coerced" him, Washington Post media reporter Howard Kurtz on Thursday quoted the lawsuit, "into publicly apologizing and taking personal blame for alleged journalistic errors in the broadcast." Josh Howard, the Executive Producer at the time of the weekday 60 Minutes who was forced to resign, rejected Rather's claim that he was just a passive narrator, telling Kurtz: "He did every interview. He worked the sources over the phone. He was there in the room with the so-called document experts. He argued over every line in the script. It's laughable."
As a service to you the reader I'm watching the presidential news conference as covered on Fox News Channel. My goal here is to give you the questions the various reporters ask and if feasible, go back and clip video of the most biased questions.
Wrap-up, 11:27: There were no questions on the Hsu scandal and Hillary Clinton nor about Dan Rather's lawsuit, even though Memogate promulgated a bogus storyline intended to negatively impact Bush's 2004 reelection. The Jena Six controversy was raised by two reporters although it's had very little national media coverage. And unsurprisingly, no one asked about the Petreaus smear by MoveOn.org except Bill Sammon of the Washington Examiner (and also a Fox News contributor).
* * * * * * ** * * *
Bush turns over press conf to Michael Leavitt for q's on SCHIP, 11:20, Fox News fades out of press conference, as do other cable networks.
Bill Sammon, Washington Examiner, 11:19: What is your reaction to the MoveOn.org ad that mocked Petraeus. Would you like to see Democrats including presidential candidates repudiate the ad?
That was the cry of many an alternative rock fan in D.C. in January 2005 when WHFS went from alt-rock to 99.1 El Zol, a Spanish language station playing mostly salsa music. [Although to be perfectly honest most music snobs agree that WHFS was past its prime in cutting edge programming, having become too corporate, etc.] Don't expect the same donning of sackloth and ashes to mourn the loss of persistent money-loser, Washington Post Radio.
Yes, the Washington broadsheet's radio edition, once described lovingly by a radio executive as "NPR on caffeine" will shut down in September, the Post's Paul Farhi reported in the August 28 paper.:
It should come as a surprise to nobody that revenue is down again for the Tribune Company, owner of news properties such as the LA Times and Chicago Tribune. This time the bleeding stopped at 5.9 percent. Circulation was down 5.4 percent. Classifieds are down 18.2 percent. Retail advertising sales are down 6 percent.
But it's not their fault, of course. This time the blame is "due to difficult year-over-year comparisons." Though one must wonder if their circulation would continue to have dropped had they heeded my suggestion that newspapers "get rid of the bias, the America-hating columnists, the socialist editorials, and the reporters pushing a gay/lesbian/transgendered/illegal alien/pro-abortion/anti-God/anti-gun agenda?"
As NewsBusters reported earlier (here and here), the New York Times is likely to soon abandon its TimesSelect pay-subscription online service. That's hardly a surprise when you look at the numbers writes Brett Arends:
The New York Times Web site is extremely popular. According to figures tracked by Nielsen/NetRatings, nytimes.com attracted about 12.5 million readers worldwide in June, the month with the most recent data. That's a huge global audience for news, and a large multiple of the Times' print circulation.
The number willing to pay extra for access to TimesSelect?
Just 29% -- a mere 221,000. That figure has risen a miserable 8,000 since the start of the year.
The New York Times is poised to stop charging readers for online access to its Op-Ed columnists and other content, The Post has learned.
..... The number of Web-only subscribers who pay $7.95 a month or $49.95 a year fell to just over 221,000 in June, down from more than 224,000 in April.
Not that it was a particularly insightful prediction, but yours truly wrote the following in November 2005 (first item at link), when the Times announced it had reached 135,000 online TimeSelect subscribers (current print subscribers get TimeSelect access free of charge):
Normally liberal media snobbery is irritating (and career-threatening if you're a young conservative journalist), but not when that snobbery is completely ineffectual to stop the thing which the whiney reporters hate. Schadenfreude is the word of the day after reading this Los Angeles Times piece about how "aghast" many reporters in the Wall Street Journal newsroom are at being employed by the son of Satan himself, Rupert Murdoch:
Reporters reacted bitterly to the prospect of Murdoch's gaining control of the Journal, which has long been regarded as a beacon of financial journalism.
They voiced concern that Murdoch would diminish the paper's quality, imbue it with some of the glitzy style of his crosstown New York Post and slant the Journal's news coverage to advance his business interests.
"People are aghast that this could have happened," said one reporter, who like others spoke on condition on anonymity. "It's a sickening realization to know that this really great iconic newspaper is [not only] no longer going to be independent, but is also going to be controlled by a man whose values are inimical to ours." [...]
In the New York Post, gossip columnist Liz Smith previewed some of the charges in Ed Klein’s book on CBS anchor Katie Couric, due at the end of August. It seems the Katie camp is already trying to do damage control and insist that the scoops that are leaking out are not really scoops, they’re all yawners. (See what happens when you hire a Hillary publicist like Matthew Hiltzik? Your media strategy suddenly sounds exactly like Hillary’s.) The only scooplet that Smith thought had power: "‘But the majority of people at 60 Minutes, including the correspondents, dislike her intensely. They think she's a lightweight.’ Well, that probably hurts, but Katie has to ignore it."
In today's Washington Post, Paul Farhi asks a question I've wondered: Why is it that every single story you hear about on cable is "developing," "breaking," or a "news alert?" Whatever happened to the regular TV news report?
This just in! There's no more news on TV, at least not on the cable news networks. Plain old news apparently just isn't good enough anymore, so TV news stories have been getting new and improved names.
President Bush's latest news conference? CNN labels it a "Developing Story." A car bombing in Baghdad? The banner on MSNBC reads, "Breaking News." A blown transformer in New York City? Fox News Channel is on it, with a graphic that announces, "Very Latest."
Ex-CBS anchor Dan Rather is stepping up his sour grapes routine against Katie Couric, telling TVWeek magazine that it's only a matter of time before his former employer cancels the "Evening News" entirely:
Dan Rather, who last month accused broadcast networks of dumbing down and tarting up their newscasts [a story which you heard here first], said he can foresee a time when media company executives retreat from evening news production.
“I think we’ll see the time when someone at the top says, ‘We can give this time back to affiliates,’” Mr. Rather said Monday in a discussion with TelevisionWeek Publisher and Editorial Director Chuck Ross at the Cable & Telecommunications Association for Marketing convention in Washington.
Just a moment ago, radio host Rush Limbaugh was blasting the mainstream media's notion that the YouTube debates represent a revolution in American presidential debates.
Not so, says Limbaugh, at least in terms of the content of the questions asked. They're still as inane and moronic, or brilliant (in rare circumstances) as they've always been because they're the same inance, moronic, or brilliant (rare circumstances) people asking them.
Instead, Limbaugh insists, we are seeing a revolution in media technology being confused for a nascent political revolution.
Now couple that, the notion that "new voices" are being heard in the YouTube debates ,with the wild left-wing skew we've documented at NewsBusters, and you see the media's liberal bias at work in staging the 2008 election in terms of liberal issue battlegrounds.
In the July 22 Washington Post, writer Monica Hesse interviewed Ron DeFore of the SUV Owners of America (SUVOA), for her Style section front-pager, "A Man Who Wants SUVs to Get More R-E-S-P-E-C-T."
But far from respect, Hesse's interview at turns shifted from an almost "Daily Show"-like mockery to an unqualified parroting of liberal talking points. You can find her interview here, but I found these three questions particularly to be cheap shots:
Be honest: when you saw the news Sunday that a woman was going to be president in the next season of the hit series "24," you smelled something akin to when ABC made a similar announcement concerning "Commander in Chief," and CBS hired Katie Couric.
Well, according to Politico, the failure of both is actually not good news for Hillary Clinton (h/t Hot Air).
But, before we get there, what was also fascinating about this piece was how the producer of "Commander in Chief" admitted a political goal behind casting Geena Davis as the first female president (emphasis added throughout):