PBS talk-show host Tavis Smiley is doing a media tour with his pal, the Marxist professor Cornel West, and no one at PBS seems to care that this underlines PBS as a hard-left media brand. Noel Sheppard noted Smiley bashing Romney on Hannity. Smiley also bashed Romney last week on the taxpayer-subsidized Pacifica Radio show Democracy Now.
Pacifica host Amy Goodman replayed the CNN interview in which Romney told Soledad O'Brien he was not interested in the very rich or the very poor. Smiley found that showed callousness and arrogance and even a demonization of the poor:
NPR's Mara Liasson outraged female listeners on Weekend Edition Sunday on April 15 when she said Mitt Romney's political problems aren't with "stay-at-home moms," but rather with "educated women."
Seven days later, NPR admitted it scrubbed the clip and the transcript for the website. On April 22, in a letters segment, Liasson claimed "I misspoke and that's one reason why we corrected the interview for later feeds of the show." Maybe she didn't "misspeak" as much as she betrayed her own opinion. She's never stayed at home and her biographies list no children. At least NPR returned to the scene of the self-censorship:
Peter Overby filed a one-sided report on Thursday's All Things Considered about a liberal coalition's campaign against the conservative organization ALEC. Overby cited the "good government group" Common Cause without mentioning the organization's left-of-center ideology. More importantly, the correspondent failed to mention that he is a former employee of Common Cause.
The NPR journalist lined up three talking heads, who all criticized ALEC, while failing to include sound bites from defenders of the conservative group. Overby also omitted that one of the three works for a law firm that represented Common Cause.
Van Jones has received a dramatic rehabilitation from the liberal media after conservative outlets dug out that Jones called himself a communist and signed a 9/11 truther petition, among other radical-left stands. (He also called President Bush a “crackhead” and Republicans “a–holes.”) He’s been reinvented like Sharpton.
But on NPR’s “Tell Me More” on Tuesday, NPR host Michel Martin gave Jones almost 12 minutes of air time. The headline on NPR’s website for the Jones interview was “Green Jobs Guru Back To Energize Progressive Base?” She began by calling the truther petition a “made-up story.” If it was fictional, why was it reported by “mainstream media” (sort of) and why was Jones pressed to resign? Martin began with Earth Day oozing in her introduction:
For over a year, the Left and their media minions have dishonestly claimed Congressman Paul Ryan's (R-Wisc.) proposed budgets would "end Medicare as we know it."
At the end of a discussion about Monday's report from the Medicare trustees predicting the program goes bankrupt in 2024, Special Report host Bret Baier got NPR's Mara Liasson to admit Medicare will end as we know it even if Congress doesn't pass the Ryan plan (video follows with transcript and commentary):
For the last two years, NPR has offered Newsweek/Daily Beast editor Tina Brown a monthly "Must Reads" feature on Morning Edition. Last week, she posed as the guardian of journalistic ideals as she trashed the late Andrew Breitbart (who "dropped dead," she sneered like a female Christopher Hitchens). So much for the sonorous civility of NPR, putting on this British-accented guttersnipe.
Does anyone at NPR want to suggest what Newsweek has done under Tina Brown is a crusade against the "degradation of journalistic ideals"? This was the last cover story, complete with a naked lady in a blindfold on the cover: "The Fantasy Life of Working Women: Why Surrender Is a Feminist Dream." It was a cover story on career women with sexual fantasies of wanting to be spanked!
On Thursday’s All Things Considered, National Public Radio offered leftist Sister Simone Campbell a megaphone to disagree with (and lecture) the Pope and the Catholic bishops for being clueless. “It was like a sock in the stomach,” she said about the Vatican’s attempt to hold women’s Catholic religious orders to Catholic orthodoxy. Just on human terms, this is odd – not just to suggest the bishops are bullying, but that a process that’s been going on for four years is suddenly shocking.
Campbell told anchor Melissa Block that the religious sisters had the superiority of “experience” of faith all over the Vatican and the bishops, and then was starkly sexist: “Women get it first and then try to explain it to the guys who -- I mean, as the women did to the Apostles.”
The D.C. area women's magazine I Am Modern interviewed NPR talk-show host Diane Rehm for their Spring issue, and Rehm’s liberal tilt was unmissable. Rehm warmly declared that her favorite "fascinating" interviews were with Hillary and Bill Clinton and that her “dream guests” were Barack and Michelle Obama. (Her biggest disappointment was Newt Gingrich.)
Not only that, Rehm was asked about attempts to defund public broadcasting and pretended the media was dominated by conservatives. PBS and NPR are seen “as a counterweight to the many outspoken conservative voices who currently dominate the airwaves.”
On Monday's Morning Edition, NPR's Barbara Bradley Hagerty touted how "liberal religious leaders said the Republican [budget] plan...was an affront to the Gospel, and especially Jesus's command to care for the poor." At the same time, Hagerty avoided mentioning the left-wing ideology of two critics of the proposal: Peter Montgomery of People For American Way, and liberal academic Stephen Schneck.
The correspondent did, however, clearly identify Ryan as a "Wisconsin Republican" and Richard Land of the Southern Baptist Convention as part of a "conservative resistance to taxation." She also highlighted how "for other religious conservatives, the Bible is a blueprint for robust capitalism," and cited evangelical radio host David Barton as an example.
NPR's Scott Horsley could have been mistaken as a spokesman for the White House or President Obama's campaign on Wednesday's All Things Considered, as he defended the Democrat's record on the economy. Horsley also claimed that Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney's claim that on women losing the bulk of the jobs over the past three years was "not really the whole story."
The only expert the correspondent cited during the segment was a low-level economist at the Labor Department, who stated that "more recently, we've seen more jobs being lost in education and health services and in government, which historically is where women tend to hold the majority of jobs." Horsley placed more of the blame on Congress (which is partially controlled by Republicans) than Mr. Obama: "The President has been pushing for billions of dollars in additional aid to keep teachers in the classroom, but Congress has not been willing to go along."
On Monday night's All Things Considered newscast, National Public Radio promoted the latest Mr. Gay World pageant, which was apparently made newsworthy since it was based this year in Africa (with black African contestants). Judges were looking for someone who could be a positive LGBT advocate and display their well-dressed and groomed "innate charm and sparkle." As is often the case on NPR, there was zero room for social conservatives.
Jo Ann Downs, leader of the African Christian Democratic Party, objected to this pageant being held on Easter Sunday, but NPR didn't find that worth noting. The pro-gay Daily Maverick site reported on Downs:
During the Holy Week before Easter in 2011, Brent Bozell noticed an "Easter bonnet of mud" timed to be thrown at Christians. One of those mudballs was thrown in Italy, a comedy movie called "Habemus Papam" (Latin for "we have a pope.") Franco Zeffirelli, the director of the TV miniseries “Jesus of Nazareth,” agreed Nanni Moretti's film was an insult to the Pope and the Catholic faithful. "It's a horrible cheap shot," Zeffirelli said. "I feel especially sorry for this pontiff, who may not be a crowd-pleaser, but who is very civilized and reasonable."
So it should not be surprising that National Public Radio would applaud its American release, timed once again on Good Friday. Openly gay movie critic Bob Mondello implausibly declared "There's nothing in 'We Have a Pope' that's likely to offend, much that will amuse and also quite a bit of effective design work."
Syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer made a point about today's media that should make everyone think twice about the state of American journalism.
In a discussion about the Ryan budget proposal on PBS's Inside Washington Friday, Krauthammer observed, "Obama will win the argument if the electorate is as gullible as Nina [Totenberg] and Mark [Shields] and Evan [Thomas] in accepting what the Administration is saying about the cuts" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
On Thursday's Morning Edition, NPR's Peter Overby slanted towards a left-wing coalition targeting the conservative group ALEC. Overby trumpeted how Coke and Pepsi succumbed to pressure from the "campaign to put a spotlight on companies that sell products to a public that might object to hardline conservative policies, such as 'stand your ground' laws or requirements that voters show a photo I.D."
The correspondent featured representatives from two of the groups in the coalition- ColorOfChange and Common Cause- and labeled them as a "civil rights group" and a "good government group" respectively. He also made only one passing reference to their political ideology- that they were part of "progressive groups and shareholder activists."
Brent Bozell mentioned that NPR "Fresh Air" host read from her own contributor John Powers for The American Prospect liberals on how many ways Rachel Maddow was fabulous. The long tribute is worth more attention.
Powers began: "I can’t say for sure when it happened—it was after Barack Obama’s swearing-in yet before Keith Olbermann got suspended for giving money to Democrats—but at some point it began dawning on people that the face of MSNBC was Rachel Maddow." That, Powers thinks, is excellent, and Maddow is the Obama era's "defining liberal newsman":
If it’s an important Christian occasion, you can predict National Public Radio will seek out an atheist expert. In 2008, NPR marked Good Friday by interviewing John Dominic Crossan, who believed the body of Jesus was not resurrected, but was perhaps eaten by wild dogs.
On Palm Sunday, NPR found it was the perfect day for atheist scholar Bart Ehrman, who has a new book out titled "Did Jesus Exist?" NPR weekend All Things Considered anchor Guy Raz was a big fan: “There are probably few people in the world who know more about the life of Jesus than Bart Ehrman. He's a New Testament scholar at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, where his lectures are among the most popular on campus.” Raz was such a fan he even told Ehrman later that he had bought his lectures on tape:
NPR's Tamara Keith filed a one-sided report on Monday's Morning Edition about Mitt Romney's "apparent shift in emphasis, if not an outright reversal" on the issue of energy policy. Keith cited the "liberal news site Think Progress" as one of her main sources for her report. She also turned to a former aide to Democrats John Kerry and Deval Patrick without giving his political/ideological affiliation.
Fill-in host David Greene spotlighted in his introduction to Keith's report how "the GOP candidates have seized on price spikes as a line of attack against President Obama, largely saying the answer is more domestic oil drilling. But one of those candidates, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, used to have a position somewhat contrary to that."
On Friday's Diane Rehm Show distributed across America by NPR, the host could not stand Republicans getting praised -- the Paul Ryan budget to be precise.
Doyle McManus, a columnist and former Washington bureau chief for the Los Angeles Times, acknowledged, "this is a huge, ambitious, bold budget that would restructure the tax system. It would lower the top tax rate to 25 percent. That would be a great gift to upper-income families...You have to give Republicans credit for doubling down, sticking to their guns and sticking to the Tea Party government-cutting and deficit-cutting proposals that they made two years ago in the face of a lot of public skepticism." Diane Rehm wasn't having it:
On Friday's Daily Rundown on MSNBC, anchor Chuck Todd asked about the sour outlook for ObamaCare: “There’s a lot of panic at the White House, to be frank. They really thought this wasn’t going to be that hard of a case....Now they’re biting their fingernails. Should they be biting their fingernails?”
NPR’s Nina Totenberg responded: “Yeah, they should be biting their fingernails." Totenberg insisted that everyone thought this was constitutional, a "piece of cake." But the Bush appointments were "very, very, very conservative." This is not the first time she's loaded the "very" boat:
On Wednesday's Morning Edition, NPR's pro-ObamaCare shill Julie Rovner predictably lined up backers of the contested law. Rover again cited the Kaiser Family Foundation and failed to mention their liberal leanings. She also turned to a former Clinton administration official, without identifying her as such, and played five total clips from liberals, versus only two from a conservative.
The correspondent hyped the "the potential impact on the relationship between the federal government and the states" if the Supreme Court struck down the controversial legislation, and that "virtually any program in which the federal government gives money to the states with conditions attached" could be at risk.
Possibly in response to NewsBusters readers who passed on our item on the string of Pope Benedict-mocking jokes on NPR's game show "Wait! Wait! Don't Tell Me!" NPR ombudsman Edward Schumacher-Matos tells NewsBusters and other critics: lighten up, or be compared to radical Muslims. Isn't the ombudsman supposed to advocate for the listeners, not denounce them?
"If we keep jokes about the pope off-limits, we create a silencing effect that is far more damaging than the jokes themselves. We threaten to become like the intolerant extremists now most notoriously bedeviling the Muslim world, though other religions suffer from strains of fanaticism as well." Say what?
Younger political junkies may not remember it, but watchers of the 1992 Clinton campaign can recall "The War Room," a documentary filmed inside the Clinton campaign. There's a new DVD of the film, out so National Public Radio just had to praise it.
On the program "Fresh Air" Wednesday, film critic John Powers described George Stephanopoulos as "a sweet but overbearing altar boy" while James Carville is "a flat out movie-star" like...a wisecracking snake in a Pixar movie."
The media are falling over themselves to relay a salacious report that the Catholic Church in the Netherlands may have surgically castrated "as many as 10 young men" over a half a century ago, in the 1950's.
NPR's "Talk of the Nation" hosted a feminist discussion group on Monday, but the first caller was a perfect definition of what Rush Limbaugh has identified as the "seminar caller" -- someone who pretends to be something they're not, like someone saying they're a Republican and then trashing the Republicans.
Monday's NPR version was a "Catholic" who trashed Catholics, finding it "appalling" that the nation's bishops were opposing mandatory payment for contraceptives.
NPR's weekend game show "Wait! Wait! Don't Tell Me!" usually saves most of its topical humor for supposed White House drunk George W. Bush or Dick Cheney the Grim Reaper for all the usual smug-liberal laugh lines. On Saturday, host Peter Sagal went on an extended comedy routine with five jokes mocking Pope Benedict XVI, beginning with the notion that he's "another famous gay icon."
By contrast, a review of the last four shows finds there have been zero Barack Obama jokes. However, on March 10, they made fun of Rick Santorum saying if elected, he would not recite the names of former presidents to make excuses for himself. This prompted a "caliphate" joke at the Catholic candidate's expense.
On Friday's Inside Washington on selected PBS stations, Charles Krauthammer floated his curiosity about what would happen if the Republicans chose a new candidate for the fall election if Romney or Santorum couldn't get to the magic delegate number. Mark Shields joked about how it would be unfair to pick to someone who hasn't slogged across the country and then made a fat joke: "Chris Christie, have a little ice cream, and come in."
There goes svelte Shields again. NPR reporter Nina Totenberg promised the elite media would savage a new Republican candidate and pick apart everything "he" has ever done or said (no females are apparently allowed in this exercise):
Legalizing suicide is a controversial subject, but not to the liberal media. On Monday night’s All Things Considered, NPR honored Oregon activist Peter Goodwin, a major force in passing Oregon’s “Death With Dignity Act,” for employing his own law and taking his own life with some pills at 83. There was no airing or acknowledgment of the opposing side, those who believe that life should end with natural death.
Culture of death? Banish the thought. Reporter Julie Sabatier’s tone was glowing: “As he was about to turn 83 last fall, Peter Goodwin still had an elfish glint in his eye. You can hear his heritage in his lilting voice.”
NPR's Nina Totenberg got a much-needed education Friday on the hypocrisy of the media's treatment of conservative talk radio host Rush Limbaugh's comments about Georgetown University law student and women's rights activist Sandra Fluke.
When the Inside Washington panelist criticized Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney for not saying "something less than complimentary" about Limbaugh, Krauthammer smartly responded, "When Obama speaks about Maher’s misogyny as he takes a million dollars for his campaign, then I’d expect Romney to denounce somebody else" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
NPR’s Morning Edition and All Things Considered newscasts skipped covering tens of thousands protesting abortion in the “March for Life” in January, but on Wednesday night, NPR highlighted a dozen protesters of Sen. Marco Rubio, including illegal aliens.
Reporter Greg Allen began: “In Miami, a dozen young Hispanic men and women gathered outside Senator Rubio's office last week to send a message” that Rubio was "Tea Partino," not Latino: