Non-political Bias

By Ryan Robertson | November 20, 2012 | 12:10 PM EST

The satirical newspaper The Onion is generally non-political and at times it has had some good conservatively-slanted humor pieces, like this gem from April 2009. But when it comes to the ongoing violence in Israel, The Onion has just proved it doesn't have many layers of complexity.

By Ryan Robertson | October 26, 2012 | 3:21 PM EDT

Not content to restrict the ongoing firestorm surrounding Senate candidate Richard Mourdock to the media, CNN's Newsroom turned to liberal comedienne Tina Fey to bash the Indiana Republican some more this morning.

"Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock better watch out," CNN Newsroom anchor Carol Costello warned, teasing the story at the top of the program. "Tina Fey is coming after them. Why the comedian says their rape comments will make her lose her mind." [ video below, MP3 audio here ]

By Clay Waters | October 2, 2012 | 3:03 PM EDT

The New York Times's Sunday Styles section offered some hard-hitting journalism about the toned-up and good-looking First Couple, complete with fabulous photos. Joyce Purnick mock-criticized Michelle Obama for looking so "toned and elegant" in "(Psst: We Feel Bad About Our Arms.)" Text box: "It's time to face the truth: we don't all look like the first lady."

I had expected to keep mum about my problem with Michelle Obama until after the election, but my frustration has gotten the better of me. I can contain it no longer.

I refer not to her politics, but to her arms-- her bare, toned, elegant arms. Enough!

By D. S. Hube | April 10, 2012 | 11:45 AM EDT

Following up on P.J. Gladnick's NewsBusters story about reports of non-existent neo-Nazi "patrols" in Sanford, Fla. in response to potential racial violence there, ABC News.com's Candace Smith apparently hasn't gotten the memo that there are no such patrols going on. As Gladnick reported two days ago, Professor William Jacobson of the Legal Insurrection blog did the legwork that reporters like Smith are supposed to do. Get this -- he e-mailed  the Sanford Police Department and simply asked them if there were indeed neo-Nazis patrolling the streets of Sanford. "No confirmed reports" was the reply. Jacobson then -- get this -- followed up by asking the police if they just weren't yet aware of any patrols: There was "no indication" of any such patrols, the Sanford police responded.

Yet ABC News.com reports today (my emphasis):

By Clay Waters | February 14, 2012 | 8:30 AM EST

The front of the New York Times Sunday Styles section was dominated by a towering photo of First Lady Michelle Obama regally presiding adjacent a hagiography by Bee-Shyuan Chang, “Wooing the First Dresser – American fashion’s most influential customer may the one far from any show this week.”

The supposedly hard-news Times has long fawned over Michelle Obama the fashion plate, who “has become a powerful trendsetter in fashion,” and her high-end, high-cost dresses, while forgoing the usual liberal sniffing about such conspicuous consumption during a recession. Fashion writer Eric Wilson on April 15, 2010 called her “the First Lady of Fashion,” and Guy Trebay called her “U.S. Fashion's One-Woman Bailout" in a January 8, 2009 story.

By Kyle Drennen | December 15, 2011 | 5:00 PM EST

On Wednesday's NBC Nightly News, one week after NBC TV star Alec Baldwin got booted off an American Airlines flight for refusing to turn off his iPad, anchor Brian Williams declared: "Now we turn to the latest skirmish in the battle over electronic devices on airplanes and what some passengers are seeing as a kind of a double standard here, now that we've learned pilots will be allowed to use iPads in the cockpit."

By Kyle Drennen | March 15, 2011 | 12:47 PM EDT

On Tuesday's CBS Early Show, contributor Taryn Winter Brill touted a new University of Pennsylvania study on the influence of breakfast cereal cartoon characters on children: "Previous research has shown how these images influence children's selections, but now a new study reveals they also influence how the kids think the cereal actually tastes."

In the report that followed, Brill described how marketing campaigns "target" kids to sell unhealthy sugary cereals: "Breakfast cereal is a $10 billion a year business and competition is fierce...especially among children's cereal....They target kids with cartoon characters, in commercials and on boxes, that practically reach from store shelves to grab your kid's attention." The headline on screen during the segment read: "Cereal Offenders; Cartoon Images Affect Kids' Taste Perception."

By Clay Waters | September 2, 2010 | 7:23 AM EDT

New York Times science writer Natalie Angier talked to some women annoyed at being called “ma'am” for the Sunday Week in Review (“Just Don't Call Me...Ma'am”) and worked in a typical jab at the male of the species.

Classes are now underway at Pennsylvania State University, and Judith Kroll, a professor of psychology, linguistics and women’s studies, will soon be greeting her undergraduate students with the usual brief spiel. “I get up and say, you can call me Dr. Kroll, or professor, or Judith if you like, but do not call me Mrs.,” she said. “I am not Mrs. Kroll. I kept my name when I got married and my husband kept his name.”There is one other honorific that Dr. Kroll dislikes and that she dearly wishes she could bar from the classroom: ma’am. Whenever a student says, “Yes ma’am” or “Is that going to be on the test, ma’am?” Dr. Kroll says she cringes and feels weird. Yet because ma’am, unlike Mrs., isn’t factually incorrect, Dr. Kroll resists the urge to scold. “My first take has got to be, this person is just trying to be polite,” she sighed.Another day, another ma’am-ogram: you may not want it; it may make you feel flattened, desexualized, overripe and nearly through; but trust me, ma’am, we’re doing it all for you.There are weightier problems in the world. Still, if you’re a woman born any time before the Clinton administration, chances are you’ve been called ma’am on more than one occasion -- by solicitous waiters asking whether you were “Done working on that, ma’am?” and hovering store clerks wondering if they can “help you find anything, ma’am,” and traffic cops telling you to “Move your car, ma’am, this isn’t a parking lot,” and the perky, hardworking fellows at the farmers’ market who see you week after week but will always cram so many ma’ams into every transaction that you realize there’s no turning back, you’ve been ma’amed for life.

Angier defended liberal Sen. Barbara Boxer's notoriously graceless tantrum over being called ma'am by a military man trying to show respect:

By NB Staff | June 10, 2010 | 11:01 AM EDT
On last night's "O'Reilly Factor," host Bill O'Reilly and guest analyst Arthel Neville discussed the possibly impending Comedy Central show "JC" - as in Jesus Christ.

Given the network's past treatment of Christianity, the portend for this show is hardly positive.

Which is why the Media Research Center has put together a coalition to ask advertisers to publicly pledge to not underwrite/support the show. 

Citizens Against Religious Bigotry (CARB) (which Ms. Neville graciously mentioned by name) is made up of many organizations - made up of Christians, Jews and Muslims - who would like to see religion not be the butt of raunchy/tasteless jokes, and who don't think America's advertisers should help fund said alleged humor.

A petition to advertisers (to be found on the CARB website) has garnered more than 115,000 signatures thus far.

And if you aren't familiar with how Comedy Central does Christianity, watch this video and you'll get an idea of what can be expected should JC ever make it to the airwaves.

By NB Staff | June 2, 2010 | 3:08 PM EDT
NewsBusters Publisher and Media Research Center President Brent Bozell and five other members of the Citizens Against Religious Bigotry (CARB) coalition will hold a tele-news conference tomorrow at 9:30 a.m. EDT to ask advertisers on Viacom's Comedy Central to publicly pledge to not support/underwrite a show currently in pre-production.  The show is entitled "JC" - as in Jesus Christ. 

[More information on how to join the call-in appears below the page break]

Joining Bozell on the call will be Family Research Council president Tony Perkins, syndicated radio host Michael Medved, Catholic League president Bill Donohue, Parents Television Council president Tim Winter, and Rabbi Daniel Lapin of the American Alliance of Jews and Christians. 

For the conference call, Bozell will unveil an exclusive, four-minute video mash-up of some of the network's many offensive clips referencing Jesus Christ and God, as evidence of what we can most likely expect from "JC."

The CARB leaders will reconvene for another tele-press conference call on June 17th, to announce the names of the companies that have publicly pledged to not sponsor religious bigotry.  And to discuss further action for those who fail to do so.

Mr. Bozell:

By Nathan Burchfiel | May 27, 2010 | 9:45 AM EDT
SATC2

There are some review snippets that likely won’t end up as movie poster taglines:

“an affront to Muslims” – USA Today

“breathtaking cultural insensitivity” – Washington Post

“cinematic Viagra for Western cultural imperialists”- Salon.com

Of all the criticisms that could likely be launched against Warner Bros.’ new “Sex and the City 2” movie, the media have latched onto the film’s reported depictions of misogynist policies in Muslim nations.

It was USA Today that called the movie “an affront to Muslims.” Reviewer Claudia Puig wrote that director Michael Patrick King “is out of his league attempting to comment on the inequitable treatment of Muslim women. He ends up mocking religious beliefs and making Carrie and her friends appear insensitive.”

By Erin R. Brown | January 5, 2010 | 5:45 PM EST

If you're going to call out someone for hypocrisy, make sure you're not guilty of the same thing. Guest columnist Welton Gaddy, a pastor for preaching and worship at Northminster (Baptist) Church in Monroe, La. and MSNBC regular, apparently had no qualms with calling out former Fox News "Special Report" anchor Brit Hume in a Jan. 4 column, but is committing the same transgression.

Gaddy took issue with the Fox News senior political analyst's 39-second spiritual commentary on redemption for the recently disgraced Tiger Woods. And although Gaddy failed to mention that Hume publicly stepped out of his role as anchor/reporter in 2008, Gaddy revealed his disgust with the apparent preachy hypocrisy emanating from the "reporter" (emphasis added).

"The picture on the television screen and the audio of reporter Brit Hume's words struck me as contradictory," Gaddy wrote. "Just below the image of the reporter's face, the insignia 'Fox News' appeared in three different places. Yet, the content of Mr. Hume's comments was not that of a news reporter so much as that of a televangelist."