It's nothing to do with political bias, but I think PC Magazine columnist John Dvorak's latest column makes an interesting allegation: that the technology media favor Apple products over Windows-based ones. Here's an excerpt:
With 90 percent of the mainstream writers being Mac users, what would
you expect? The top columnists in the news and business magazines fit
this model too. The technology writers fit this model. The tech writers
and tech columnists for the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Newsweek, and Fortune
are all Mac users. I could list them by name, but I'd hate to leave one
out. Maybe I'll blog them by name. I could list 50. Readers should thus
not be surprised by the overcoverage of Apple Computer. Every time
Steve Jobs sneezes there is a collective chorus of "Gesundheit" from
tech writers pounding away on their Macs. [...]
What's bad for Microsoft is that the bias against it is subtle—kind of
like any sort of media bias, whether religious or political. As one
critic once said regarding the supposed left-wing slant of the daily
news media, "It's not what they write, it's what they write ABOUT that
matters." Story selection. Microsoft can roll out a dozen cool
products, and the media goes ga-ga over the video iPod—a rather
late-to-market Apple product.
Is Dvorak right or wrong? Please keep the flames to a minimum.
One of the few pieces of major legislation that has recently passed with overwhelming support from both parties was the bankruptcy reform bill, signed into law by President George Bush in April. While a bipartisan majority in both houses of Congress endorsed the bill, the media have lamented the new law’s reforms.
Journalists on NBC, CBS, and ABC have called Chapter 7 bankruptcy a “safety net,” a “new lease on life,” and “a fresh start.” In contrast, as one interviewee put it, there’s “a special place in hell” for those who crafted the reform bill. While not every story took such a hyperbolic tone, the media used the victims of Hurricane Katrina to lobby against a reform they didn’t particularly like.
The networks showed roughly the same interest in bankruptcy after Katrina as they did when the bill was in Congress. The Free Market Project analyzed network news stories between April 1 and October 17, finding six full stories in the weeks surrounding the bill’s passage. In the wake of Hurricane Katrina’s destruction, as the new law’s effective date approached, the media coverage was seven full stories. The recent stories tied the victims’ welfare to the “obvious choice … to file bankruptcy,” as NBC’s Alexis Glick put it on the October 10 “Today” show.
James O. Clifford, Sr., a retired reporter and editor with UPI and the Associated Press, has an interesting guest column, "Cardinal Law Was Looking For Media Sin In The Wrong Places," in this month's edition of the conservative Catholic magazine, New Oxford Review. Clifford argues that while the national media have rightfully reported aggressively on systemic abuses and coverups among the Catholic hierarchy regarding priestly sexual abuse of children, the media have played down similar concerns within the teaching profession about nationwide problems with student-teacher sexual misconduct in American public schools.
The article can be found teased here, featuring the first five paragraphs. There is a $1.50 charge for reading the full article.
It took ABC Radio's Martha Raddatz only two sentences to report the vote on the Iraqi constitution. In the first, Raddatz allowed as how the referendum probably passed. In the second, Raddatz said (my memory),
"It cannot be denied, however, that thousands and thousands of Sunnis will be living under an Iraqi government they did not want."
Yes, Martha, in elections, that's the way it works. One side wins and one side loses.
In the midst of the recent controversy surrounding Harriet Miers' political leanings, the media seems to have come to its own comfortable determination that Miers is a suitable candidate for the Supreme Court.
In this story by Donald Lambro for the Washington Times, several Republican chairmen are quoted as saying they believe their constituents support Miers. What I want to know is the last time a party chair said, "Yeah, my constituents agree, our president doesn't know what he's doing." This is news? And what about the conservative megasite, Townhall.com's recent poll, that said 86% of the site's viewers don't like Miers? I'm not great at math, but something isn't adding up.
National Black Justice Coalition president and gay activist Keith Boykin was prevented from speaking at yesterday’s Millions More Movement March in Washington, DC. As Boykin was walking to the podium, he was at the last second turned away.
Oddly, this controversy has gone largely unreported. A Google-search suggested the only mainstream outlet that covered this was the Washington Post, though they buried the article on page A16.
At the heart of the conflict is Rev. Willie F. Wilson, the march’s national executive director who apparently made some disparaging remarks about lesbians this summer.
“This is what happened today. After I arrived at the VIP tent shortly after 8 in the morning, my colleague Donna Payne spoke directly to Rev. Willie Wilson backstage, and he informed her that no one from the National Black Justice Coalition would be speaking today. Donna told Rev. Wilson that he was violating our agreement, and Wilson replied that the agreement was void because the Coalition had not responded by Friday. That was not true.”
For those unfamiliar with Boykin, this is a Dartmouth College and Harvard Law School graduate who was part of President Clinton's trade delegation to Zimbabwe in 1997 along with Rev. Jesse Jackson, Coretta Scott King, and Transportation Secretary Rodney Slater.
No, this is not about the Rev. Louis Farrakhan and his march in D.C. Instead, it’s about an article today (15 October) in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer entitled, “ 'Slave syndrome' may still affect black behavior.” The thesis of the professor appears in the early paragraphs:
“The troubling images of African Americans displaced by Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans' impoverished neighborhoods didn't startle researcher Joy DeGruy-Leary. ‘All Katrina did was reveal what was already there. I wasn't confused, wasn't surprised,’ she said....
“DeGruy-Leary, an assistant professor in Portland State University's Graduate School of Social Work, will discuss her theory of the relationship between race, culture, poverty and history today at the third Seattle Race Conference and tonight in a separate talk. Her theory of "post-traumatic slave syndrome" concludes that African Americans needed to adapt to survive more than two centuries of slavery, and that those adaptations are reflected in their behaviors today.”
So a preacher, a comedian, and a scientist walk into a bar...
Okay, I'll spare you that joke, but all of the above comprised Harry Smith's theological roundtable in the second half hour of today's Early Show. The question for Jerry Falwell, Andy Borowitz, and Bill Nye "the Science Guy," was, "Is God mad at us," given all the natural disasters---tsunami, hurricanes, earthquakes, mudslides---that have beset the planet since last December.
It's an odd theological panel to have, and a relatively unserious segment given the makeup of the panel. If Smith's intent were to have a theological discussion, he'd have been better served by having perhaps a Catholic priest, Falwell, a Jewish rabbi, and an Islamic imam to showcase theological opinions from those four faiths. Instead the audience was served an odd mishmash of Falwell expounding on Christian doctrine, Bill Nye plugging global warming, and Andy Borowitz jokingly blaming Paris Hilton for flooding in the Northeast.
CBS reporter Kelly Cobiella’s reaction to flooding in the northeast United States was to call for federal aid. All she needed to do to understand that wasn’t a good idea was to watch her own news show.
Cobiella’s call came during the October 13 “Evening News,” which did a two-part segment on flooding in the northeast. Cobiella was in New Hampshire and Claire Duvall reported from New Jersey. Cobiella began the report and after surveying the New Hampshire flood damage she declared “There is a real need for federal help here.”
Duvall then followed up, interviewing Oakland, N.J., resident Ruth Brock. Brock lamented that flooding “has happened three times since April. Prior to that it was three times since 1955.”
The free weekly tabloid Washington City Paper recently started a new feature, Service Industry, its purpose, "rating D.C.'s houses of worship." Religious readers, however, may sense a bit of condescension, intended or not, in the notion of rating a church service much like it were a play, concert, or film, especially if the church rated by the City Paper's reviewer seems to give it bad marks for its conservative or traditional Christian theology.
This week's entry, "The Church in the Lord Jesus Christ of the Apostolic Faith Inc." in Anacostia garnered a poor 1.5 stars (out of a 5 possible). The reviewer gave high marks (4 stars) for "congregational fervor" but was non-plussed by the lack of "food for the body" after the service (0 stars) and was not too keen on Deacon Larry Mathis's anti-evolution sermon (1 star) nor the church's teachings forbidding female preachers.
The "mainstream" media today, in a stunning display of left-wing bias, engaged in a coordinated anti-war propaganda campaign designed to overshadow an attempt by President Bush on Thursday to rally America's troops. The effort was so gratuitously spiteful, partisan, and transparent that Joseph Goebbels himself would have applauded it.
In a video conference yesterday to members of the Army's 42nd Infantry Division based in Tikrit, the President did his best to boost the morale of U.S. fighting forces in Iraq, saying "We're never going to back down, we're never going to give in, we'll never accept anything less than total victory." This message was intentionally kicked to the curb by liberal journalists across the country and around the world this morning, when headlines began to appear stating that the teleconference had been "staged".
Here's a partial list of the stories I found on the internet today concerning the event.
For the media, Hurricane Katrina has been a story of zeroes – the more, the better. While reports before the hurricane’s landing incorrectly warned of tens of thousands of deaths, one prediction that has panned out is the gargantuan cost of the storm. Katrina wrought tens of billions of dollars in destruction and set in motion a $250-billion rebuilding effort.
While not as visible of a step, freeing the market of government intrusion is almost as important as the endless zeroes in the relief budget. One broadcaster who has given these new policies serious attention is CNN’s Lou Dobbs. Unfortunately, he disregards free market solutions on a regular basis. Even raising the minimum payments for credit cards is a “mindless” step engineered by “idiots at the U.S. Treasury Department.”
At today's White House Press Briefing, Helen Thomas wanted to know what a 'total victory' meant in Iraq. As Scott McClellan was answering the question to her dissatisfaction, she interrupted and tried to trip him up again. Scott, tired of her anti-War rhetoric, came right out and said she was against the War on Terror. Helen responded and said that the Middle East knows we invaded Iraq and ended her remarks with "I'm opposed to preemptive war". Thanks for being fair and balanced Helen.
Washington Post columnist Tina Brown today took the opportunity to mark the 80th birthday of Margaret Thatcher, Britain's first female prime minister, with a scathing attack on Harriet Miers.
In, "You've Come a Long Way, Ladies," Brown begins:
The healthiest aspect of the Harriet Miers nomination is that women haven't rallied to her cause. Ten years ago, there would have been a lot of reflexive solidarity about keeping the Sandra Day O'Connor spot on the Supreme Court from reverting to male type. But every female lawyer I've spoken with in the past week skips right past the sisterly support into a rant about Miers's meager qualifications or her abject obeisance to power. The good news is that for women, it seems, Miers's nomination is like the moment for blacks in Hollywood when it was suddenly okay to cast an African American actor as something other than a perfect hero. The Sidney Poitier phase is definitively over.
Last week Time Magazine’s cover story was called The Battle Over Gay Teens and I wrote an article discussing the bias from the writer of the article and also cited examples of where content was intentionally ignored.
Today I read an article found on The Patriot News website called Gays Win Support On Campus and the article mentions, as its main support, the Time magazine article from last week.
Spending federal money without raising taxes? Broadcasters have been incredulous at the thought, especially since Hurricane Katrina hit – so much so that 59 percent of their tax-related stories have suggested tax hikes. Reporters turned to everyone from Bill Clinton to the man on the street to fellow journalists to make the case for taxation.
A typical question from a network reporter showed annoyance at the president’s tax policy and implied that anything but raising taxes is irresponsible, sounding something like this: “The last thing in the world that George W. Bush wants to do is raise taxes, but the amount of money that we’re talking about here, we’re talking about many, many, many tens of billions of dollars. Can that be done without raising taxes?” That was ABC’s Ted Koppel following Bush’s address to the nation on September 15.
Journalists made sure the audience didn’t forget several things – namely, that Americans are paying for military operations in Iraq and that the United States has a deficit. As the Free Market Projecthas shown reporters frequently refer to deficits as if they are inherently bad, though they are actually a small percentage of a multitrillion-dollar economy and should not inspire panic.