Conservative activist, author, and political consultant Craig Shirley, contrary to Politico.com's reporting, was not "ousted" from his job advising the McCain campaign. In fact, he's not been on retainer since March. That according to Townhall.com's Matt Lewis today:
John McCain's campaign asked a prominent Republican consultant, Craig Shirley, to leave his official campaign role Thursday after a Politico inquiry about Shirley's dual role consulting for the campaign and for an independent "527" group opposing the Democratic presidential candidates.
I'm told by a reliable source that Shirley was not asked to leave. Instead, he was given the choice and decided to stay with the 527.
In an update, Lewis noted that he talked to Shirley, and far from being ousted, his services haven't been employed recently:
Update: I just spoke to Shirley and according to him:
West Virginia primary voters were asked at least two factually faulty exit poll questions yesterday, both of which asserted that the U.S. economy is already in recession. This, of course, is absolutely false. A recession is marked by at least two consecutive quarters of negative economic growth. The last quarter of 2007 and the first quarter of 2008 were marked by slow, but positive, economic growth.
See the screencap from CNN.com below (h/t e-mail tipster Jeff Williams):
"Average gas prices set record at $3.72 a gallon" reads the teaser headline on the USAToday.com Web site. Yet the photo (by Justin Sullivan, Getty Images) accompanying the teaser on the front page shows a gas marquee with gasoline at $4.09-a-gallon.
On Sunday, my colleague Warner Todd Huston apprised readers of a truly disgraceful Newsweek article which continued to demonstrate just how in the tank media are for Democrat presidential candidate Barack Obama.
On Monday, the good folks at National Review Online were similarly outraged, and expressed concern about Newsweek's obvious lack of impartiality.
First up was Jim Geraghty who took issue with Newsweek's reference to the McCain campaign's "letter suggesting Obama was the candidate of Hamas" without explaining what precipitated it:
Poor teaser headline selection by MSNBC.com? I report, you decide.
At right is a screencap of a teaser headline from the Web site about U.S. humanitarian aid reaching Myanmar Burma. As the AP story linked makes clear, the fault for the delay in the aid's arrival is that of the military dictatorship, not any incompetence or lack of concern by Washington.
Yet the teaser headline reads: "First U.S. aid plane lands in Myanmar; UPDATED: Relief comes more than week after cyclone."
The same headline and subhead are found on the AP article as found when readers follow the link. The AP story itself makes clear the Burmese government has and continues to be an obstacle to reaching devastated Burmese civilians with much needed food and medical relief:
For years, NewsBusters has reported the unfortunate incidence of vulgarity and virulence in the liberal blogosphere, as well as how some prominent politicians and left-leaning media members have expressed concern regarding how such behavior negatively reflects on the Democrat Party.
On Friday, this invective hit a new low at Daily Kos when a piece that was quickly promoted to the highly-coveted "Recommended Diaries" list had an extraordinarily deplorable title -- which will NOT be printed here for what will be obvious reasons! -- dealing with relieving oneself on the likeness of former President Ronald Reagan.
This piece of detritus is so vile (h/t NBer lumpy) I won't dishonor the former president, or my readers for that matter, by linking to it; before curiosity sends you over there to see for yourself, be forewarned to do so with an empty stomach and the understanding that you will be revolted beyond your wildest imagination.
TVNewser is reporting this morning that a Fox News production assistant was fired for cheering on John McCain when she got close enough to the Arizona senator during the Time 100 Gala.:
Insiders tell us the assistant, identified as Jennifer Locke, was on assignment with a camera crew to cover the entertainment angle of the event. When Sen. John McCain walked by, the assistant said, "I voted for you in the primary, you're going to win."
A Fox News insider called it "journalistically unacceptable." An FNC spokesperson would not comment on the personnel matter but did confirm Locke is no longer with the company, where she'd worked for a couple of years.
Wal-Mart is right up there with "Big Oil" as a left-wing bogeyman, and the mainstream media are often on the side of liberal activists screaming "Boo!" as our friends at the Business & Media Institute can attest. But today's Chicago Tribune laid out how "[b]ig city politics trumps low prices" with a labor union victory over Wal-Mart's plans to erect a store within city limits.
The paper's Web site featured a teaser headline, "Why Wal-Mart's not building here," [pictured at right] complete with a photo of the still-vacant lot that's been the subject of debate for over two years.
CNN has an article posted this AM about the on-going misery in Myanmar resulting from the recent cyclone that devastated the Irrawaddy delta and has left as many as 100,000 dead. The country's paranoid military dictatorship is hampering aid efforts, and as a result, is no doubt adding to the number of dead and injured.
In writing about the U.S. forces in the area poised to help if the dictatorship will only allow international aid, CNN makes the following curious claim (in bold):
The Catholic-majority Supreme Court has no respect for nuns. That's the new media meme about a recent Supreme Court ruling upholding an Indiana voter ID law. That very same law, the media would have us believe, "barred" or "turned away" from voting 12 nuns in South Bend on the Hoosier State's May 6 primary. Of course as a simple read of the Indiana Secretary of State's Web site shows, that's utter nun-sense. but Time's Karen Tumulty has picked up on it twice over at that magazine's Swampland blog.
This from a post yesterday informing readers of a news conference to be held today at 1 p.m. EDT:
Surely, our majority-Catholic Supreme Court should have known better than to get on the wrong side of the Sisters. As we wrote earlier, the first victims of the new ruling on Voter ID were elderly nuns in Indiana. This just in, in my emailbox: The nuns of Missouri rap the Supreme Court's knuckles with a great big ruler:
I'm no medical doctor or psychiatrist, but I believe there's a disturbing condition sweeping the left-wing blogosphere, closely related to the well-documented malady of Bush Derangement Syndrome. Call it Limbaugh Derangement Syndrome if you will, and I will.
What else do you call it when a lib blogger compares the radio talk show host to agitators of Rwandan genocide? From Jeffrey Feldman's May 7 blog over at Huffington Post (emphasis mine; h/t NRO's Kathryn Jean Lopez):
The right-wing pundit's 'orders' to his Republican listeners have been clear: vote in the Democratic primaries as a coordinated tactic for sewing [sic] division in the opposition party. The goal of such 'chaos,' Limbaugh has stated explicitly, is to foment hatred between different parts of the Democratic Party leading, ultimately, to street riots during the Denver convention.
If you have been watching the primary election coverage tonight you've probably seen at least one story about elderly nuns from South Bend, Indiana, who were "denied the right to vote" for lack of a photo ID.
It's a shame when the mainstream media, bear false witness. Even more so when they exploit the nun angle to carry water for left-wing groups that opposed the law all the way up to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Under Indiana's voter ID law, persons lacking proper ID can vote. The only difference is they cast a provisional ballot which is not counted until after their identity is verified within 10 days following the election.
In one of her earliest drafts, AP's Deborah Hastings did note the 10-day provisional ballot exception, but still crafted her coverage to paint the South Bend sisters as the victims of an unforgiving law:
As readers of NewsBusters are no doubt aware, we've tracked how the media have regularly refused to acknowledge the political party affiliation of indicted Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick (D).
Well, today, Associated Press reporter Julie Carr Smyth did acknowledge Kilpatrick is a Democrat, albeit in a roundabout sort of way in an article about Ohio Attorney General Marc Dann being the latest in a series of Democrats to find themselves in legal hot water due to sexual indiscretion.
Oh, you've never heard of Dann? That may be because the Ohio AG's scandal lacks the tech savvy of text messages or the sleaze factor of high-priced call girls. But now that it appears that the nuclear option of impeachment may come into play, Time.com is picking up on AP's May 6 article:
Jody L. Wilcox at The Contemporary Conservative blog mocks People magazine for a "really lame" puffball interview with Hillary Clinton in their 100 Most Beautiful People edition (Hillary was not on that list). There were the usual annoying pop-culture questions: "American Idol or Dancing With the Stars"? (Both.) "Tina Fey or Amy Poehler?" (Both.)
Most Clinton critics would hone in on the usual soften-up-the-marriage questions. "When was the last time you and Bill had some quality time?" "What was the last present he gave you?...Your last present to him?" "What does he do around the house that drives you crazy?" You want to pen in answers like, "He also answers 'both' to Tina Fey or Amy Poehler." But the biggest pandering line came when she cited women's magazines as the solution to tough gas economics:
Three things in life are certain: death, taxes, and media hype about gasoline prices. On television that third item often takes place not just in your usual standup at a gas station interviewing outraged motorists. In Web-based media, however, the still shot is worth 1,000 barrels.
We've noted how CNN.com has done it. Today, it's ABCNews.com with its front-page teaser headline "Oil: Another Day, Another Record."
The photo accompanying the AP story filed from Vienna -- yes, as in Austria -- by writer George Jahn depicts a gas marquee from an American gas station showing regular unleaded at $4.419-a-gallon. Here's how the caption for the AP photo by Marcio Jose Sanchez that accompanies Jahn's article reads (emphasis mine):
Another journalist has gone on-the-record equating conservative concerns about the liberal Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) with racism. In a May 5 blog post on the Chicago Tribune’s “The Swamp” blog, writer Frank James expressed his concern about racist white people. James wondered, “How much of Sen. Barack Obama's supposed patriotism deficit among voters has to do with his being African-American?”
Why does James think that whites view African-Americans as less patriotic? According to James’s post, it’s because there is “an assumption on the part of white Americans that a racial group whose ancestors were slaves and which still complains about racial inequalities and injustice must by definition be less patriotic.”
This is a much more serious sin than the folly I noted earlier today from ABCNews.com coverage of a Bill Clinton visit to a "Pentacostal" church.
On May 1, Christianity Today's Sarah Pulliam took to her magazine's Liveblog to address ABCNews.com's numerous errors in reporting on a faculty matter at evangelical Wheaton College:
ABC's report of Wheaton College professor Kent Gramm's resignation was an example of sloppy journalism and weak analysis.
The original headline was simply false: "Professor Fired for Getting a Divorce." Gramm was not fired. He resigned because he declined to talk with the college about his divorce. (The image to the right is a screen shot of an earlier version)
Later today, ABC changed the headline to "Professor Loses Job Over Divorce." The headline is still not quite accurate. To lose your job generally indicates that someone took it away from you. However, Gramm voluntarily resigned. And according to the Chicago Tribune, the college offered him another year of employment while he searched for another job.
There is a huge blogswarm going on about this photo, from Chicago Magazine, of Obama's unrepentant terrorist associate, Bill Ayers stomping on the American flag. The photo was taken in 2001, the same time Barack Obama served on the Woods Fund Board with Ayers. This was also the same time that Ayers donated to Obama's campaign.
Marathon Pundit has similar photo, and many political bloggers are saying it long past due for Obama to disown his association with this controversial radical.
The question that remains is, will the media pick this up or will they write it off as old news? Its worthy of recycling this to further probe into Obama's judgement, the one thing he says he should be measured by.
Former President Bill Clinton pinged ABCNews.com's Political Radar on a pulpit-pounding campaign swing through the Tarheel State just two days before the North Carolina primary. But it appears the alphabet network's Web site not only got the name of an Asheville, N.C., church wrong, but it misspelled, three times, the name of a denomination within Protestant Christianity (emphasis mine) in this May 4 blog post (screencap below fold):
ABC News' Sarah Amos reports: Former President Bill Clinton spent time in two western North Carolina churches this morning, speaking more from his heart than any sort of political handbook.
"I didn't come here to ask you to vote for my wife," said Clinton, addressing the congregation at Church of the Pentacostal in Asheville, N.C. "I came here to ask you to pray for her. And to vote. Do whatever you want. Show up. Our country is in dire distress.
Here's something you don't see every day: a liberal, female editor of a leading liberal online magazine stating with cameras rolling that most press members "Hate, hate Hillary Clinton."
Yet, that's exactly what occurred Sunday morning when Salon's editor-in-chief Joan Walsh spoke some truths about the media's love affair with Democrat presidential candidate Barack Obama, as well as their disdain for the former first lady (video embedded right).
Also surprising was Walsh's view of liberal assertions that the Rev. John Hagee is as big an issue for Sen. John McCain's candidacy as Rev. Jeremiah Wright is for Obama's.
But, before we get there, here were Walsh's comments about media bias during this campaign:
Update (14:11): Video is no longer up on YouTube, so we pulled the embed. For more coverage, see Ed Morrissey's post at Hot Air.
Just in time to prove a major migraine for the Clinton campaign for the May 6 Hoosier State primary, a YouTube video alleges Clinton backer Mickey Kantor once derided Indianans as "sh*t" and "white n****rs." Fellow NewsBuster Seton Motley and I reviewed the video. There's no doubt Kantor actually said "It doesn't matter if we win. Those people are sh*t," but there is a dispute over who "those people" are and if the second slur is doctored. [see video embed below fold]
Ben Smith at Politico.com reports that D.A. Pennebaker, director of "The War Room" from which the clip is taken, insists the "white n****rs" comments were doctored. Au contraire, says the editor of the video, who insists he merely "enhanced" the audio to bring out the barely whispered epithet.
What's more, Smith reports, Pennebaker says Kantor was referring to then-President George H.W. Bush's political advisors as "sh*t", not the people of Indiana themselves:
"[I] split my time between The Weather Channel and this think tank in Princeton and one of the things we've been trying to do is work with Google Earth essentially. And for me, coming from The Weather Channel, the most powerful tool that exists is Weather.com and you type in your zip code and you get a forecast out five days."
Hillary Clinton's tax policy on gas and oil is "pointless" while John McCain's is "evil," according to New York Times columnist Paul Krugman. But in explaining the difference, Krugman betrays either his ignorance of the flawed history of the so-called "windfall profits tax" on petroleum or his tacit approval of the tax despite its folly as public policy.
Anyway, John McCain has a really bad idea on gasoline, Hillary Clinton is emulating him (but with a twist that makes her plan pointless rather than evil), and Barack Obama, to his credit, says no. [...] The Clinton twist is that she proposes paying for the revenue loss with an excess profits tax on oil companies. In one pocket, out the other. So it’s pointless, not evil. But it is pointless, and disappointing.
Far from being pointless, a windfall profits tax produces negative effects on consumers and investors, as well as the health of the energy industry, say many economists, including former Bill Clinton economic advisor Robert J. Shapiro who focused his fire on the policy's damage to retirees' investments (see PDF of study here).
Washington Post reporters Alec MacGillis and Steven Mufson found another liberal economist with nothing positive to say for a windfall profits tax in their May 1 front-page article (emphasis mine):
The State of Israel turns 60 years old this May, but rather than highlighting the nation's survival in a hostile region over six decades, U.S. News & World Report aimed to focus on discontent from Israeli Arabs, and to suggest that Israel's sovereignty was in and of itself the cause of "six ensuing decades of bloody conflicts."
A lot of bias can be packed into six little words. Take, for example, this April 30 headline on CBSNews.com: "'Hostile' Iran Sparks U.S. Attack Plan." Hostile with the quote marks coupled with "U.S. attack plan" without them suggests belligerence on the part of American military authorities who might be overly suspicious of a "hostile" Iran.
The term "attack plan" might even evoke in readers the notions that an imminent, perhaps large scale offensive military action or war with Iran, a favored bogeyman of left-wing anti-war activists.
But the term "hostile," as we see in the story's lede, is taken from one unnamed military officer's description of Iran's "increasingly hostile role" in backing insurgents in Iraq who are the primary threat to the safety of American GIs.:
(CBS) A second American aircraft carrier steamed into the Persian Gulf on Tuesday as the Pentagon ordered military commanders to develop new options for attacking Iran. CBS News national security correspondent David Martin reports that the planning is being driven by what one officer called the "increasingly hostile role" Iran is playing in Iraq - smuggling weapons into Iraq for use against American troops.
What's more, the article itself lays out that the "attack plan" is more or less an upgrade and revision of plans to address an existing Iranian threat, more than a master plan for another war.:
Four, count them, four ABCNews.com reporters hacked out a three-page April 30 article for the alphabet network's Web site that dealt with new steamy text messages between Democratic Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick and his then-chief-of-staff Christine Beatty. Kilpatrick, indicted on twelve criminal counts including perjury and obstruction of justice, could see time in prison thanks to these text messages which would prove he lied under oath about his affair with Beatty.
Here's how the Kwame Quartet of Vicki Mabrey, David W. Scott, Mary-Claude Foster and Katie Escherich opened their story:
More steamy text messages sent between Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick and his former chief of staff reveal intimate details about their relationship, and further indicate the mayor played a part in the dismissal of a police officer whose lawsuit brought their affair to light.
In a 10:15 EDT post today at CNN.com, producer Bill Mears noted the 6-3 ruling by the Supreme Court upholding an Indiana law requiring photo ID in order to vote. Yet Mears left out that Democrats who challenged the law were unable to produce a single voter who could prove he or she was unable to vote due to the law nor did Mears point out mechanisms the Indiana law has in place for provisional balloting and free voter ID cards.
Here's Mears's four-paragraph blog post at the CNN Political Ticker:
WASHINGTON (CNN) – The Supreme Court on Monday backed Indiana's law requiring voters to show photo identification, despite concerns thousands of elderly, poor, and minority voters could be locked out of their right to cast ballots.
The 6-3 vote allows Indiana to require the identification when it holds its statewide primary next month.