Journalistic Issues

By Matt Vespa | August 1, 2013 | 11:14 AM EDT

Al Kamen’s In The Loop blog on the Washington Post’s website needs to be renamed.  It’s become unhinged. Emily Heil’s July 31 post for the feature literally blamed sequestration for the Snowden fiasco.  Yes, according to Heil, because of that horrible, debilitating fiscal hatchet that Congress dealt last spring, Snowden was able to spill the beans on the NSA’s surveillance operations.

Despite the evidence that the effects of the sequester were minimal at best, Heil pressed in her post that Snowden just would’ve been a normal government contractor collecting paychecks if such a policy hadn’t been executed.  Right, because the editorial board at the Washington Post has a magic crystal ball that nobody knows about. Did I mention the main source for such a claim is none other than... Snowden’s father?!:

By Matt Vespa | July 28, 2013 | 11:54 PM EDT

If you want to see what a buried lede looks like, look no further than the Washington Post’s story about juror B29 in the George Zimmerman case.   The headline of the July 25 piece blares what the left-wing commentators have been screaming for days: "Zimmerman got away with murder.” It’s juicy.  It’s eye-catching, but it paints a two-dimensional portrait of how the juror, who calls herself Maddy, feels about the case.

In fact, Maddy, a mother of eight of Puerto Rican heritage -- bursting once and for all the "all-white jury" meme in the liberal media -- said in a televised interview that she thought the trial was a “publicity stunt,” and probably shouldn’t have been convened in the first place.  Additionally, she noted “You can’t put the man in jail even though in our hearts we felt he was guilty.”  Translation: there was reasonable doubt (or some would say innocence) – and if that’s the case, you cannot send someone to prison.

By Joe Newby | July 27, 2013 | 6:20 AM EDT

According to all reports, Juror B29, the sole nonwhite juror on the George Zimmerman trial, said the neighborhood watch volunteer got away with murder. But Slate's William Saletan says not so fast, and accused the network on Friday of deceptive editing and manipulation to get the answers they wanted.

According to Saletan, the juror -- identified only by her first name, Maddy -- has "been framed as the woman who was bullied out of voting to convict Zimmerman."

By Matt Vespa | July 26, 2013 | 2:48 PM EDT

A recent poll shows that more than eight out of ten non-white voters are fine with their state government requiring a photo ID at polling places. Yet, that fact was completely omitted from a front-page Friday New York Times story by Charlie Savage and Adam Liptak which dutifully praised Obama Attorney General Eric Holder's push to gum up Texas's voter ID law in federal courts.

Additionally, it seems that the MSNBC crowd is on board with voter integrity laws as well.  Sixty-five percent of respondents, who described themselves as "very liberal to liberal," thought that showing an ID before voting was a "good thing."  So, this isn't a legitimate issue.  It's only relevant in the liberal boardrooms of America's news media.

By Matt Vespa | July 24, 2013 | 1:20 PM EDT

Yesterday, Slate promoted to their front page a July 19 article promising a look at “what fracking really looks like.”  David Rosenberg's piece about the photos taken by New York-based documentary photographer Nina Berman seems to rehash the frivolous narrative that fracking will turn your bathroom into the devil's water closet, complete with fountains of flame! 

Liberals – and their allies on the environmental left – must’ve missed the EPA report showing that fracking doesn’t pollute surrounding groundwater.  But why go with facts when fiction is so much more melodramatic, particularly with the new release of Josh Fox’s latest anti-fracking documentary Gasland Part II.

By Matt Vespa | July 22, 2013 | 5:32 PM EDT

The July 19 broadcast of ABC’s “What Would You Do?” at first seemed to be devoid of any racial themes that usually plague the overly-contrived ABC "News" show.  Yet, they needed to insert a racial element to see if bystanders would stop a would-be thief in broad daylight. A man named Uvall is an actor playing your everyday American commuting to work.  He parks his car along the front of New York Panini in Huntington, New York.  His car has over $10,000 in valuables, which Kevin, another actor who happens to be a white guy will try to steal. He’s mostly successful.  Yet, he’s stopped by a naval officer -- a real person, not an actor -- and placed under a citizen’s arrest. Nevertheless, ABC had to play the race game to see if there’s more to Kevin’s success.

During the second go-around in this scenario, Gabriel replaces Kevin.  He’s another actor, and he happens to be black.  He’s caught every time, and also placed under citizen’s arrest.  Yet, is this racism, or more perceptive bystanders, the folks at ABC ask?

By Matt Vespa | July 18, 2013 | 3:15 PM EDT

Imagine if you will a conservative Republican mayor used public employees' work time to advocate stricter state-level abortion regulations throughout the country? The Left would, and to an extent rightfully so, raise a fit, and the liberal media would, again, rightly so, beat the drums and make the abuse of power a major national story.

But when it's liberal independent Mayor Michael Bloomberg doing the same thing to push a gun control agenda, the media are not-so-strangely silent, given the media's push for ever-more-restrictive gun laws.

By Matthew Sheffield | July 17, 2013 | 5:00 PM EDT

The Associated Press, the most powerful and widely used wire service in the world, decided last week to lend its support to the extremist views of Texas state senator Wendy Davis by utlizing a Twitter hashtag #StandWithWendy used by her supporters.

After pro-life bloggers called attention to the tweet, AP deleted the tweet from its official timeline but the wire service has still not apologized for its action.

By Matt Vespa | July 17, 2013 | 8:49 AM EDT

With the Supreme Court ruling on the Defense of Marriage Act last month, you know that ABC’s “What Would You Do?” just had to produce a segment on gay marriage – again.  In the July 12 broadcast, the show decided to pick the liberal state of New Jersey -- a blue state for a change -- in order to find these nasty, homophobic Americans.  The scenario was simple.  Two lesbians walk into a local bakery picking out their future wedding cake.  The baker is a homophobe.  He hurls insults.  What would you do?

To no one’s surprise, the vast majority of the bystanders were appalled by the baker’s remarks.  Some offered their apologies, while others coaxed the couple, played by actors, to leave the store for a friendlier baking establishment.  Again, save for a few customers, most of the people caught on camera offered empathy and support for the discriminated couple.  Then again, in a state where 60% support gay marriage, you’d be hard-pressed to find Westboro Baptist types lingering around a bakery ready to gay-bash at the drop of a hat.

By Andrew Lautz | July 16, 2013 | 4:19 PM EDT

New York Times Magazine correspondent Mark Leibovich has made waves in Washington, D.C. recently with the release of This Town, his tell-all account of the “universally disliked” culture in our nation’s capital. Leibovich appeared on Tuesday’s Morning Joe to promote his controversial book, and to discuss the breakdown of Washington journalism with co-hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski.

Leibovich suggested he wrote This Town to “hold a mirror to the culture” of the nation’s capital, and that the ultimate takeaway of his work is that “everyone fundamentally is disappointed with Washington.” But Leibovich’s history of partisanship, as documented by NewsBusters, suggests that the reporter is very much a part of the dysfunction inside the Beltway. Leibovich has a history of praising Democrats and bashing Republicans, all in a day’s work at the left-wing New York Times.

By Matthew Sheffield | July 14, 2013 | 6:47 PM EDT

Now that he has successfully defended himself from criminal charges brought against him by the state of Florida for the 2012 shooting death of Trayvon Martin, George Zimmerman is going to resume a lawsuit he filed several months earlier against NBC News.

Launched in the midst of the state prosecution against him by a separate civil team, the lawsuit is a defamation claim alleging that NBC deliberately altered an audio recording so as to make Zimmerman appear to be racist.

By Matt Vespa | July 10, 2013 | 3:37 PM EDT

In Texas, it’s only a matter of hours until abortions are banned at 20 weeks.  It’s a popular bill amongst those residing in The Lone Star State – with 62 percent supporting the law.  Nationally, 50 percent of women and 52 percent of Millennials also want abortions to be banned at 20 weeks.  Overall, only 14 percent of Americans support late-term abortions.  The public is not with them, so pro-aborts vent their rage.

How do they do that?  By salivating over women who don’t care they had them in the first place – and celebrating their courage in carrying out the dirty deed.  On Tuesday, MSNBC featured New York Times op-ed contributor Beth Matusoff Merfish, who was “incredibly proud” of her mother’s abortion.  Today, Jessica Grose of the Washington Post-affiliated Slate news site, who now writes a monthly column for the "Motherlode" blog at the New York Times, wrote that we need to hear more unapologetic voices for abortion because that’ll influence the fight “leftward.”