Journalistic Issues

By Jacob S. Lybbert | August 22, 2008 | 4:11 PM EDT

Sometimes simply adding the link to our Editors' Picks sidebar just isn't enough. First reported by Luke Ford and confirmed by ERS News, it looks like LA Observed's Kevin Roderick's didn't actually share two Pulitzer Prizes after all. You see, there's sharing and then there's sharing. In the first sense, we all "shared" in Kerri Walsh and Misty May-Treanor's Olympic Gold medal. In the second sense, the U.S. women's gymnastics team all shared the team's silver medal. In 1993 and 1995, the Los Angeles Times "staff" won Pulitzers for the LA riots and the Northridge earthquake, respectively. The Pulitzer awards committee names "staff" as the recipient when contributors number more than three. With a dozen stories listed and over two dozen credited reporters and photographers, the LA Times's Pulitzers were awarded to "Staff," meaning the 25 or so credited participants. Roderick certainly "shares" the Pulitzer in the second sense, that it redounds to the good of the entire LAT, but in purely official terms--you know, the ones that make it alright to claim it on your resume--Roderick did not share the Pulitzers.

By Warner Todd Huston | August 22, 2008 | 8:39 AM EDT

The L.A. Times' Rosa Brooks has done it again, taken a serious subject and made an uninformed romp of it. One wonders how the old Georgian lady seen in news photos standing wounded among the ruins of her apartment building, or the Georgian Mother running down the street, infant in her arms, trying to escape Russian tanks might feel about the humor with which Brooks brings to bear upon their plight? But, there it is for all to see in Brooks' "The Cold War, reheated" wherein Brooks puts the funny back in war. It's been too serious for too long for Brooks, apparently. We need the sunny side of ethnic cleansing, brutal invasion, and crushing occupation, don't we?

Oh, and let's not forget the skewed history, incorrect conclusions, and partisan inanities that Brooks blurted out with her little attempt at "Springtime for Gorbachev." Only with this production, Brooks is seriously trying to absolve the U.S.S.R.

By Warner Todd Huston | August 21, 2008 | 4:55 PM EDT

Via Drudge we get the recognition that Time Magazine has once again placed the Obamessiah on its cover. This makes the 7th time in the space of a year that Obama has graced the cover of Time Magazine.

Thus far, McCain has found the favor of the front cover precisely two times.

In the tank much?

By Warner Todd Huston | August 21, 2008 | 3:19 PM EDT

A new independent study shows that deaths from terrorism have actually declined by more than 40 percent since 2001. This flies in the face of the constant Democrat mantra that states the opposite, that terrorism has increased since Bush initiated the War on Terror. It is a mantra that the media have helpfully spread for their friends at the DNC.

We've heard it again and again from the left in this country; deaths by terror have increased under George W. Bush and his War on Terror has failed. Along with so many on the left side of the aisle in the U.S., Barack Obama has said this several times in the past, too. At the Democratic debate at Saint Anselm College on Jun 3, 2007, for instance, Obama said that Bush's war has failed. "We live in a more dangerous world," Obama said on that stage, "partly as a consequence of Bush's actions..."

By Warner Todd Huston | August 21, 2008 | 3:00 AM EDT

Orlando Magazine (FL) published the amazing life's story of Florida artist Mark Pulliam in their August issue. It was an amazing story of a man who seemingly did everything. Played Major League Baseball, hobnobbed with the likes of Paul McCartney, Madonna, and Tiger Woods as well as finding great success as a local artist. Oh, it seemed a whirlwind life. One little problem. Little of it was true and Orlando editor Mike Boslet want you to know he's sorry.

Unfortunately for Orlando Magazine, they simply took Mark Pulliam's word for it all, ran with the story, and were informed by readers that many of the details didn't seem to pan out. So, on second look, the editors of Orlando sent an investigator to track down the various factoids that Pulliam told them about his personal history. It turned out little of what Pulliam claimed was true.

By Warner Todd Huston | August 20, 2008 | 7:49 AM EDT

Congratulate yourselves as being among the leading edge in Americans interested in the news. According to a recent Pew survey 37 percent of America's news consumers go to the Internet for their news. But it isn't all good news for our sources of news. For one thing, this survey also shows that many of us are logging on at work. This is the sort of thing that could be hurt if more and more businesses ban Internet use, as some have.

Of course, there is more bad news for newspapers as well as TV viewers here, too.

By Jacob S. Lybbert | August 20, 2008 | 12:25 AM EDT

When will the University of Illinois (Chicago) release the Annenberg Challenge documents? This is the question Stanley Kurtz asked in his column yesterday at NRO. Since then, the call has been taken up by various conservative blogs and radio shows. Today, U of I News Bureau Director, Bill Burton, issued a press release.

The University Library supports the teaching, research, and service missions of the University by acquiring, organizing, preserving, and providing access to information. The Library is open to the public and dedicated to free inquiry. The University has not received ownership rights to the Chicago Annenberg Challenge collection. The university is aggressively pursuing an agreement with the donor, and as soon as an agreement is finalized, the collection will be made accessible to the public.

Ok, fair enough. But why the secrecy over the donor of the documents? And more importantly, can the university guarantee in the interim that nothing will be removed or altered?

By Brent Baker | August 19, 2008 | 11:20 AM EDT
“Over the last 10 years,” the just-released biennial news consumption survey from the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press determined, “virtually every news organization or program has seen its credibility marks decline” and “Democrats continue to give most news organizations much higher credibility ratings than do Republicans.”

Based on past Pew polls, CNN touts itself as “the most trusted name in news,” but the percent who “believe all or most” of what CNN reports has fallen 12 points, to 30 percent, since Pew first posed the question in 1998. Yet, in a sign of how far the news media have fallen in the eyes of the public, that puts CNN at the top of the 12 television news outlets analyzed, as well as above all the newspapers and online sources. Believability for ABC News, CBS News and NBC News is down six points over the past ten years, to 24 percent for ABC and NBC, 22 percent for CBS, but that's still better than the mere 18 percent who “believe all or most” of what they read in the New York Times.   

The extensive polling conducted in May also discovered that the audiences for CNN and MSNBC, “which were heavily Democratic two years ago, have become even more so: fully 51 percent of CNN's regular viewers are Democrats while only 18 percent are Republicans. MSNBC's audience makeup is similar -- 45 percent of regular viewers of MSNBC are Democrats, 18 percent are Republicans” and “the regular audience for nightly network news also is now about two-to-one Democratic (45 percent vs. 22 percent Republican).”
By Warner Todd Huston | August 18, 2008 | 6:45 PM EDT

<b>**Video Below the Fold**</b>

<p><img src="http://conservablogs.com/publiusforum/wp-content/themes/art/obamaposter_... align="right" border="0" hspace="10" vspace="10" />Question: Isn't it big news when a leading candidate for president of the U.S. admits that since 2003 he has been lying about a vote he once made? Even more to the point, isn't it big news when the candidate himself was on TV not long before that admission saying that everyone else is the liar? So, why is the media silent on the 180 degree about face that the Obama campaign has just made concerning Obama's BAIP vote? </p>

<p>As NewsBusters <a href="http://newsbusters.org/blogs/warner-todd-huston/2008/08/13/obama-lied-ab... on August 13</a>, the media pretty much ignored the great work by Jill Stanek in uncovering the truth that contradicted nearly 6 years of claims that Obama made concerning his vote on the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act when he was in the Illinois State Senate. Obama claimed that the Federal "neutrality clause" wasn't in the Illinois bill and that if it were he would have voted for the bill instead of against it. Stanek proved that the exact same clause Obama said wasn't in the bill was actually placed in the bill by the very committee Obama chaired. Yet he still voted against it.</p>

By Mark Finkelstein | August 18, 2008 | 2:00 PM EDT

As NewsBuster Brad Wilmouth has noted, over the weekend NBC News political director Chuck Todd, previewing the Saddleback forum, suggested it represented an opportunity for Obama to forestall "personal hatred" of him by evangelical Christians.

Todd has now contacted NewsBusters to express regret over his choice of words.  

Todd's initial remark was made to Andrea Mitchell during a pre-game special edition of Hardball on Saturday:  

CHUCK TODD: It's just not, it's just not his comfort zone. So it's a huge opportunity for Obama tonight to at least not be hated by the evange-, look, these folks are not going to ever support him. They know what kind of judges he's going to appoint. It's going to be judges that evangelicals aren't going to be happy with. But they're not going to, if they don't have a personal hatred of him, then that's a good thing for Obama.

Todd today contacted NewsBusters, acknowledging:

By Warner Todd Huston | August 18, 2008 | 5:08 AM EDT

Many of you are aware of the kerfuffle surrounding the "cone of silence" complaint being ginned up by the Obama campaign after the recent Saddleback Civil Forum on the Presidency on Saturday, August 16. The claim made by Obama and his willing accomplices in the Old Media (like Andrea Mitchell, not to mention the DailyKos) is that John McCain "cheated" by hearing the questions proffered to Obama, who was first up to be questioned by moderator Rick Warren. McCain's answers were just too glib, the Obama meme posits, so he must have heard the questions ahead of time instead of being placed in an area off stage where he could not hear the proceedings. Yes, they are saying he cheated.

On Sunday, August 17, The New York Times did its level best to assist the Obama campaign to further that mistaken conception -- well, all right, that outright lie -- even as they debunked the story. How? By making their headline seem to support the Obama claim that McCain cheated, that's how.

By Warner Todd Huston | August 17, 2008 | 4:53 AM EDT

<b>**Video Below the Fold**</b>

<p><img height="157" hspace="0" src="http://www.nydailynews.com/img/2008/06/24/amd_kobebryant.jpg" width="120" align="right" border="0" />In a recent interview with USA Olympics basketball team member Kobe Bryant, NBC Sports reporter Chris Collinsworth seemed to question Kobe's patriotism when the player said that he was proud to wear the team USA uniform. Wondering if it was "cool" to be proud of being on Team USA, Collinsworth seemed to surprise even Bryant with the temerity of the question. Why Collinsworth wouldn't think it would be "cool" to be proud of being on the American Olympic basketball team is anyone's guess.</p>

<p>In a portion of the interview, Kobe began to say how thrilled he was to get his Team USA uniform and that he "just stared at it" for a while in awe. Collinsworth followed that heartwarming display of patriotism with a jaw dropping series of questions. Worse, he asked these questions with an absurd smirk stealing across his face, seeming to think that he was about to join Kobe in cynicism over the evil America with his doubting Thomas questions.</p>