Facing a budget shortfall due in large part to overspending in years past, Gov. Martin O'Malley called a special session of the Maryland General Assembly to consider a package of tax hikes and a referendum on legalizing slot machines. Now that the freshman Democratic governor has proven successful in pushing through both, the Washington Post congratulated O'Malley with a front page article replete with pats on the back and attaboys from O'Malley's fellow Democrats. The icing on the cake: a signing ceremony photograph (shown above*) of O'Malley that appears to show him pumping his fist in victory.
Staff writer John Wagner opened his November 20 article with triumphal language that painted O'Malley as a respected statesman:
The U.S. military plans to seek a criminal case in an Iraqi court against an award-winning Associated Press photographer but is refusing to disclose what evidence or accusations would be presented.
An AP attorney on Monday strongly protested the decision, calling the U.S. military plans a “sham of due process.” The journalist, Bilal Hussein, has already been imprisoned without charges for more than 19 months.
Veteran Maryland political commentator, radio show host and White House correspondent Les Kinsolving often calls Maryland "The Land of Political Enchantment," and indeed the Old Line State never fails to enchant natives and outsiders alike with its bizarre --William Donald Schaefer comes to mind-- and often corrupt politicos.
Yet although the state is famously blue-hued with an overwhelmingly Democratic General Assembly, you can count on the media to ignore the party affiliation of Democratic state legislators who run afoul of the law.
Such was the case with the Associated Press today ignoring former state senator Thomas Bromwell's Democratic Party affiliation. AP follows the Washington Post's lead (see my July 24 article) in ignoring Bromwell's party connections.
The New York Times newspaper headlined its article about the recently concluded United Nations-sponsored Internet conference in Brazil as US Control of Internet Remains Issue. However, as is usual with the Times, while the tone of the article was complaining about the fact that the United States maintains control over the core Internet, they offered no evidence that handing over control to a foreign or even worse, a UN-controlled entity would be better. As the Associated Press article used by the Times reports,
A U.N.-sponsored Internet conference ended Thursday with little to show in closing the issue of U.S. control over how people around the world access e-mail and Web sites. With no concrete recommendations for action, the only certainty going forward is that any resentment about the American influence will only grow as more users from the developing world come online, changing the face of the global network.
The famous picture of a terrified Mohammed al-Dura hiding behind his father enraged millions of Muslims and became such an iconic image of Palestinian martyrdom and Israeli occupation that it caused violent rioting, inspired some UK Muslims to commit to radical Islam and was even used in suicide bomber propaganda.
It took a defamation case to get France2 to fork over the raw footage, but Media Backspin reported portions are missing (bold mine throughout):
Major Garrett of Fox News broke a story on the 9th that revealed that the Hillary Clinton campaign had admitted to planting questions at a Newton, Iowa town hall meeting. Garrett reported that the Clinton campaign promised that planted questions would not happen again, but this isn't something new for the Clinton campaign. Hillary has controlled the media with an iron fist yet few from the media have complained about it. And now, only a few MSM sources seem interested in this tale. Why is this story being ignored by the major media outlets? Worse, why do they allow Clinton to hamstring their ability to cover her without complaint? And, remembering how they reacted in 2005 when they thought the Bush administration planted questions, why are they letting Hillary slip by untouched?
Shouldn't it be big news that a candidate refuses to allow candid questioning on the campaign trail? Of the incident, Garrett says, "In a state where the caucus is held sacred and the impromptu and candid style of the town hall meeting is held dear, Clinton’s planted question may come as a great offense to Iowans." But, Iowans shouldn't be the only ones who should find Clinton's actions disturbing.
The Independent Television Service (ITVS) is a left-wing "independent" film-makers collective funded through our tax dollars (the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, to be exact). "Independent" isn’t really the right word. These filmmakers may be outside a corporate or studio system, but any glance of the ITVS grants shows there are no conservative filmmakers in America today making anti-Michael Moore films that celebrate capitalism or anti-abortion films or films against illegal immigration with government subsidies provided by ITVS.
ITVS lives up to its leftist values by adding political activism. It has a community-organizing emphasis. It shows its films not just on PBS stations, but also organizes free community showings in theaters. It also has hired organizers to "leverage" its leftist films to "build stronger connections" and spur on a more aggressive fight for "social justice."
It seems that no bad Hillary Clinton deed goes unresponded to.
As we are in the midst of a presidential campaign, this by itself is not an issue. That it is the national media that is leading this charge is. One need focus on but the latest corners of the Clinton pantheon to come to light to see the full court press the press puts on when their girl needs them.
In an October 10 Boston Globe interview, Senator Clinton let her socialism slip a bit, saying "I have a million ideas. I can't do all of them. I happen to think in running a disciplined campaign - especially when it comes to fiscal responsibility, which is what I'm trying to do - everything I propose I have to pay for. You know, you go to my website, you'll see what I would use to pay for what I've proposed. So I've got a lot of ideas, I just obviously can't propose them all. I can't afford them all. The country can't afford them all." (Emphasis ours.)
Author and political reporter Timothy Carney has an interesting item this morning in the Washington Examiner about how Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) practically gets campaign contribution kickbacks from her support for subsidies to the drug industry for the so-called emergency contraceptive pill Plan B. Emphasis mine. (h/t James Joyner):
Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., portrays herself as a scourge of the pharmaceutical industry, but she has shown that she’s willing to help a drugmaker if that’s what it takes to profit Planned Parenthood, her indispensable political ally.
Clinton’s campaign Web site touts that she has “battled the big drug companies.” Yet she has sponsored many bills that would directly subsidize Barr Laboratories, maker of the emergency contraceptive pill Plan B, which also functions as an abortifacient. Thanks to a deal cut between Barr and Planned Parenthood, those taxpayer subsidies will yield generous profits for the pro-choice group that every four years spends millions trying to elect a Democrat to the White House.
In the same vein as NewsBusters Warner Todd Huston's earlier blog today about labeling bias, the Associated Press found a Republican politician's alleged episode of gay sex worthy not only of mentioning his party affiliation, but of doing so in the lede.
SPOKANE -- A Republican state legislator from southwest Washington had sex with a man he met at an erotic video store and then told police he had been targeted in an extortion attempt, according to police documents released Tuesday.
State Rep. Richard Curtis, R-La Center, who on Monday declared, "I have not had sex with a guy," told police he was the victim in an extortion attempt by Cody Castagna at the posh Davenport Tower hotel Friday, search warrant documents said.
Curtis' party was also mentioned in the subhead for the article, although that may have been the work of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, where I found the article from a link in the paper's Big Blog.
Democrats never get "outed" as Democrats by the MSM if they are accused of crimes and corruption, but if they are Republicans... well, that party affiliation is rarely held back by that same media. Some may have scoffed at this claim that GOPers are always outed while Dems are always shielded, but here is so perfect an example of it that it almost seems that we wrote it ourselves as a Halloween joke. Today we have a case where the party affiliation of a Republican nearly leads the report of a legislator accused of a sex crime. Even more amusingly -- or sadly as the case may be -- our example here is written by the same AP reporter who failed to report the Democrat label in past stories. Nope, no bias here!
On October 4th, we had a Newsbusters piece displaying the "reporting" of one Chet Brokaw, Associated Press Writer, who gave us a little tale about a state Senator from South Dakota who is accused of sexually molesting a legislative Page. One tiny aspect of the facts of that particular story seemed to slip by old Chet Brokaw, Associated Press Writer and that would be that the accused legislator is a Democrat. So, go ahead... ask. What would old Chet Brokaw, Associated Press Writer, do if he should be assigned a story where the eeeeevil sex offender was a Republican lawmaker? Come on, I know you are dying to ask. Well, since you asked, here are the first two paragraphs of a recent piece by my man Chet Brokaw, Associated Press Writer:
Orange County Sheriff Mike Carona was indicted "on federal corruption charges stemming from a lengthy investigation into allegations that he had misused his office for financial gain," the Los Angeles Times reported on October 30. Reporters Christine Hanley, H.G. Reza and Paul Pringle noted that Carona was once considered a "rising star" for the GOP.
It's a fair point to make note of Carona's party affiliation, but the Times unevenly applies party labels when it comes to elected officials' scandals.
As NewsBusters contributor Dave Pierre noted on September 11, Democratic Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's (D-Los Angeles) campaign violations and the corresponding punitive fine of $5,200 were buried on page B-4 of that day's Los Angeles Times. The same squib failed to disclose Villaraigosa's Democratic Party affiliation. (more follows after page break)
What is it about leftist pundits and their singular inability to accept good news about Iraq -- if they acknowledge any good news at all -- then use that news to formulate illogical policy suggestions? Time Columnist Joe Klein, while duly reporting the extremely good news in Iraq, draws all the wrong conclusions from that info based solely on his desire to cut and run in his titled, "The Ramadi Goat Grab." The MSM just cannot accept ANY good news from Iraq without spinning it as verging on failure.
Time's Joe Klein, aka the Anonymous who wrote "Primary Colors," painted a very nasty portrait of the crop of 2008 Republican candidates for the presidency on his October 24 appearance on MSNBC's "Morning Joe." Particularly of note, Klein referred to the former Republican governor of Massachusetts as a "troglodyte.":
Look at Mitt Romney. Mitt Romney, you know, ran as a liberal against Ted Kennedy in 1994. Then he ran as a moderate for governor, and now he's running as a troglodyte. It's unbelievable.
Romney has come under fire from conservatives, and perhaps quite fairly, for his flip-flopping on key issues over the past two decades. Yet no respectable pundit on the left or right would characterize the affable family man as a "troglodyte."
Even so, Klein's invective went unanswered by host Joe Scarborough, who helpfully added, "And it seems to work in all cases."
Every time the media feature an ostensibly Average Joe to further a liberal Democratic talking point, my curiosity is piqued as to how that person was singled out by a news agency to flesh out the human dimension of a policy argument. Many times it turns out the poster child/family in question is delivered to the media on a silver platter courtesy of a professional liberal activist.
The Frost family of Baltimore seems to be no exception, as Lisa Rein of the Washington Post noted in passing deep in her October 23 article on Bonnie Frost's pro-socialized health care activism.:
"Bonnie's a symbol of the true depth of the health-care crisis in Maryland," said Vincent DeMarco, president of the Maryland Citizens' Health Initiative, which is sponsoring the new radio ad. "Luckily, CHIP is there for their kids, but there's nothing for them."
John Stossel dares to question the conventional wisdom of liberal minds and MSM on the topic of global warming in the following video.
The heartbreaking part of this report is to see the reaction of the children being interviewed. They have obviously been indoctrinated with only one side of the story to the point of fear. When asked where they learn this, one kid points to Al Gore's "Inconvenient Truth."
One point that John takes apart as factless is that even if global warming is real, that it is man's fault. Despite recent developments, man can't control the weather, much less the climate.
John points out that there is another side to the story and that too often the scientists that have tried to tell it have been silenced and threatened. As John says, "Give me a break".
Even though folks like Al Gore say "the debate is over", the debate is long from over. The only reason it appears so is because the critics are too often silenced.
What's rarer than Al Gore flying commercial? An honest media discussion about Cuba's devastating problems, especially the barely functional medical system.
In the week since the October 10 “Hannity & Colmes” (video Pt. 1 & Pt. 2), other than some conservative blogs, the media ignored the disturbing images that revealed the truth about Cuba's much-vaunted health care system.
The hosts interviewed Cuban expat George Utset and showed pictures from his website The Real Cuba as well as the exclusive footage that he obtained from Cuban physician Darsi Ferrer Ramirez.
The images showed dilapidated and crumbling hospitals with patients covered in flies, broken windows, laundry hanging from open windows, filthy bathrooms with holes in the floor and insect-infested rooms (view footage here). Since this disgrace is hidden behind the Castro Curtain, the media don't seem to care.
Covering the flap over Rep. Pete Stark's (D-Calif.) assertion that President Bush likes to see American soldiers die for sport, Washington Post reporter Jonathan Weisman tossed in a swipe about Republicans of his own, characterizing a vote to uphold Bush's SCHIP veto as a vote to "deny children health care."
[Video of Stark's comments available on YouTube via the NRCC here]
Even though all the Founding Fathers pretended that they hated the media (which then meant newspapers and tract publishing) each of them had their very own newspaper supporters and nearly all paid for tracts that supported their viewpoints and policies to be published. These tracts and newspapers were usually subscription-supported, but sometimes they were freely distributed. Flash forward to today in Chicago. Today, thanks to a law ushered in the back door right under everyone's noses, it is illegal to distribute free newspapers. Were the Founders alive today, Richard Daley, King of Chicago, would prevent them from distributing their political papers to the public. No speech in King Daley's city... not without HIS say-so, anyway.
Of course, like all busy body, cradle-to-grave governments, the ordinance in question was ostensibly to do something "good" for us all. You see, Title 10, Chapter 8 of the Municipal Code was supposed to "help" us get rid of litter in this fair Windy City.
Rarely has a man made more of a fool of himself, than has Lou Dobbs with most of his recent post on his webpage on CNN.com. Rarely does one catch such a glimpse of self-importance, arrogance and assumptions of omniscience. It is so bad that Dobbs imagines himself enough of a soothsayer, enough of a scryer,* that he knows what Bush's legacy will be even before Bush leaves office... if, according to Dobbs, the country is still even here when Bush steps down. Talk about wild-eyed, hyperbole. With people like Dobbs and Olberman, it is no wonder that no one believes what the MSM says. Their "act" is so outrageous, there is no way to take them seriously. "Beware the lame duck," Dobbs ominously warns with his headline in this piece, most of which is just a silly screed, where he worries that the country won't last another 15 months.
Frankly, I spend more time worrying about whether or not the United States can survive the remaining 15 months of his ebbing presidency.
In an effort to kill it forever, Representative Mike Pence (R-Ind.) is attempting to force a vote on the floor of the House today over the future of the so-called "Fairness Doctrine." Yesterday, Pence secured House passage of the "Free Flow of Information Act" to protect the press and is now launching an effort to nix the ability of the executive branch from re-instituting the woefully unfair "Fairness Doctrine," a relic from the 1980s that deserves to remain dead and buried.
Using a somewhat arcane House rule called a "discharge Petition," Pence and Rep. Greg Walden (R- Ore.) are attempting to defy the House majority and force a vote on the measure. A "discharge petition" would need the support of 218 members of the House to force a vote and Pence already has 201 names pledged to support him. He needs only 17 Democrats to join the effort and Pence can defeat the efforts of Nancy Pelosi to block the attempt.
Wired magazine's Sarah Lai Stirland is reporting that liberal advocacy group MoveOn.org is reversing course after it was lambasted for censorship for pushing Google to censor anti-MoveOn.org ads by Maine Senator Susan Collins' (R) campaign.:
The left-leaning political advocacy group, MoveOn.org, is backing down in a flap over the use of its name in online advertisements, permitting an influential Republican senator to criticize the organization in a reelection ad on Google's search engine.
"We don't want to support a policy that denies people freedom of expression," says Jennifer Lindenauer, MoveOn.org's communications director.
In another swipe at the U.S. Military, the website of the Isthmus, a weekly alternative paper from Madison, Wisconsin, published a short piece called, “Army Aims at Schoolkids,” in which the paper quotes an anti-military activist as saying that the ad banners for the U.S. Army posted in Madison’s High Schools is “extremely inappropriate.” Of course, we should expect one of these anti-military nuts to call out against the U.S. Army for advertising in our schools, but what we shouldn’t expect is the subtle bias from the paper that helps those who hate our troops attack the Army.
The hallmarks of an editorial board that is against the military is evident throughout this report.
Time's Joe Klein (file photo at right) has a bit of a hypocrisy problem. After earlier saying he wanted to "throw up" after seeing President Bush showcase "snowflake babies," children adopted as frozen embryos, during a ceremony marking his veto of a bill to expand federally-funded destruction of embryos for medical research, Klein professes disdain not at Democratic partisans who used 12-year-old Graeme Frost to plug the vetoed SCHIP expansion, but conservative bloggers who brought scrutiny to bear on Frost's parents, Democratic officials, and a lapdog liberal media that uncritically relayed the Frost family's account.
The former top U.S. military commander in Iraq, Army Lieutenant General Ricardo Sanchez, addressed the annual conference of Military Reporters and Editors on October 12. While his condemnations of what he called “a glaring and unfortunate display of incompetent strategic leadership” have been widely reported, his criticisms of the media’s Iraq coverage has received far less attention. Here is an excerpt of Sanchez’s speech:
As all of you know I have a wide range of relationships and experiences with our nation’s military writers and editors. There are some in your ranks who I consider to be the epitome of journalistic professionalism -- Joe Galloway, Thom Shanker, Sig Christensen, and John Burns immediately come to mind. They exemplify what America should demand of our journalists -- tough reporting that relies upon integrity, objectivity and fairness to give accurate and thorough accounts that strengthen our freedom of the press and in turn our democracy.
On the other hand, unfortunately, I have issued ultimatums to some of you for unscrupulous reporting that was solely focused on supporting your agenda and preconcieved notions of what our military had done.
Now, I know finding a Republican in Chicago city government is probably less likely than spotting a nudist in a porcupine convention, but is it asking too much for the Chicago Tribune and the Chicago Sun-Times to add a D-tag when reporting on six-term (and freshly re-elected) Mayor Richard M. Daley's push for an 11 percent city sales tax and a 10-cent-per-bottle bottled water tax?
It's particularly puzzling given the Sun-Times excellent reporting by Tim Novak and Fran Spielman on the "hidden tax" imposed by corruption within the Daley administration:
When Mayor Daley asked Chicagoans to cough up $293 million more next year to finance the cost of city government, there's one tax he failed to mention: The Corruption, Waste and Mismanagement Tax.
On September 29, 2007, Baltimore 12-year old Graeme Frost became the Democratic poster child, literally, for SCHIP. Frost read the Democratic Party's official response to the president's weekly radio address, attacking President Bush for his veto of a Democratic-sponsored bill to balloon federal spending on the 10-year old program.
The Baltimore Sun ran a story that morning noting young Graeme Frost's brush with political football history, and two days earlier ran a gauzy profile on Graeme's mom and dad and their push for the Democratic SCHIP expansion here. But now that conservative bloggers have been raising questions about the portrayal by Democrats and the Baltimore Sun of the family's financial plight, the Sun is hitting back by attacking conservatives bloggers as heartless and obsessive, Michelle Malkin noted on her blog.
Democratic mayor Robert Levy, accused of being a phony soldier of sorts, went AWOL on September 26, failing to report to work on behalf of the citizens of Atlantic City, New Jersey. Reported the AP in an October 9 article:
Levy has been mired in scandal for nearly a year.
Last fall, the Press of Atlantic City reported that the Vietnam veteran's claims that he was a member of the Green Berets were untrue. He apologized.
But federal authorities have been looking into whether the 64-year-old Levy made that claim to increase his veteran's benefit payments.
Hmm, no party label? Even though this is not just resume embellishment but a possible case of veterans benefits fraud?