Liberals love to hate Rupert Murdoch. The federally funded Kennedy Center in D.C. even imported an Australian play that fervently imagines Murdoch’s powerful life on stage. Andrew Beaujon at Poynter Media Wire reported at the Thursday performance he attended, “applause broke out on my right and left when one character criticized Republicans.”
For all of the ardor liberals muster against Murdoch’s tabloid newspapers and Fox News and their grasp of the facts, is it surprising that this play doesn’t restrict itself to the facts? Director Lee Lewis explained the play is a “fantasia” against the right-leaning media baron:
Today, President Obama is going to ask a group of private-sector companies to help him try to solve a problem his administration's policies have seriously worsened, namely long-term unemployment.
Of course, that's not how Josh Lederman at the Associated Press, aka the Administration's Press, framed the situation. All he would concede is that "long-term joblessness in the U.S. remains a major problem." After the jump, in two graphs from the St. Louis Federal Reserve, we'll see the frightening level of long-term unemployment Obama's economic policies have created – and how the horrid numbers have failed to come down significantly in the 4-1/2 years since the recession officially ended.
During an interview with Lloyd Grove of the Daily Beast website, MSNBC president Phil Griffin strained at gnats when he stated that his network “has never had an ideology” but insisted that the dominant Fox News Channel does.
“An ideology is a single thought across all programs,” he said. “We’ve never had that.” However, Griffin asserted, MSNBC instead has“a progressive sensibility,” which he claimed is not the same as an ideology. “Obviously, I hire people who fit the sensibility” because “we do stay true to facts. You have to build your argument. That's why I call it a sensibility.”
As much as people on the left in this country and others rage against Rupert Murdoch and his many creations it is rather remarkable how most American conservatives, even professional political junkies, know or care very little about the man.
Beyond missing out on understanding how Murdoch’s life is a textbook case of the power and influence of media on policy, people on the right who aren’t very familiar with Murdoch are also missing out on a number of interesting stories.
Left-wingers like to imagine Rupert Murdoch as some sort of James Bond villain – a global media mogul who ruins the international socialist agenda with feisty tabloids and right-wing TV hacks.
No one imagines that more than National Public Radio, which fired Juan Williams for daring to associate with “The O’Reilly Factor.” NPR media correspondent David Folkenflik has obsessed over Murdoch for years and now has a new book out called “Murdoch’s World.” On Monday’s Morning Edition, NPR promoted its own reporter’s book, and his finding that “there’s a cruelty to his journalism,” that he’s “punitive” with political opponents.
New Yorker reporter Ryan Lizza caused a bit of a stir in the conservative media world today in a report he filed for the New Yorker about the ongoing debate in the U.S. Senate over an immigration bill that is currently opposed by many conservatives. According to the piece, the so-called Gang of Eight see the role of Florida Republican Marco Rubio as being to “neutralize” conservative talk radio and to get opinion hosts on Fox News Channel to either talk up the legislation or at least not oppose it.
In their view, Rubio, who was initially touted by many conservatives nationally as their great hope even though he was regarded far more skeptically by Florida conservatives, has succeeded in his assignment.
The latest cover of Bloomberg Businessweek promotes this theme: "You Old Fox: How Rupert Murdoch Survived -- And Profited From -- News Corp.'s Brush With Death." Felix Gillette's cover story is titled "The Escape Artist."
Gillette reported that Murdoch was "supposed to be finished," but today, "he survives at the helm of a global entertainment and publishing company that, far from being diminished, has soared in value," much to the dismay of the Left:
While most regular people don’t really know or care who he is, Rupert Murdoch is among a small handful of individuals who is most despised by the far left in this country. Unlike many others, he also has the great distinction of being loathed by exponents of socialism worldwide.
After reading (or watching) the speech which he recently gave to an Australian think tank called the Institute of Public Affairs about the moral superiority of free markets, it’s not hard to see why those who would enslave markets because they believe them to be based on greed would despise Murdoch, especially since he has the absolute temerity to dare to own newspapers, movie studios, and television channels across the globe.
The Los Angeles Times is up for sale, and there are super-wealthy conservative bidders. Get out the popcorn and watch the liberals squeal. The hilarious kickoff came when two leftist collectives – the Daily Kos website and the California-based Courage Campaign Institute – set out to buy an ad in the the L.A. Times to protest the Koch brothers pondering a bid.
I kid you not, the ad began: “WE NEED NEWS, NOT MORE SPIN.” This would assume that today’s Los Angeles Times – which just endorsed Obama’s re-election – is an oasis of objectivity in a desert of media bias. They expressed outrage when the Times wouldn't publish the ad -- but then they did.
In August, Rupert Murdoch’s FX picked up a Cold War series set in the 1980s titled “The Americans.” Liberals might have braced themselves for the worst. It sounded like some kind of Chuck Norris-style “jingoistic” homage to freedom-loving intelligence agents. But this is Hollywood, so the show instead focuses on KGB spies who speak perfect English, working to destroy Reagan-era America, which is not altogether a bad thing to people in Hollywood.
Joe Weisberg, who worked for more than three years at the CIA, first wrote a script about two CIA case officers stationed in Bulgaria. Fox bought that script, too...but that project was deep-sixed. Boring. But exploring the daily joys and sorrows of undercover Soviet agents, that just thrills the Hollywood Left. Some things never change.
Mark Thompson, a former director-general of the British Broadcasting Corporation, began his new job Monday as president and CEO of The New York Times. The lack of embarrassment was remarkable. Thompson claimed he was the worst kind of ignorant buffoon, knowing nothing about the massive sex-abuse scandal – and then its censorship – that’s rocking the BBC.
Scotland Yard has been conducting a criminal investigation into allegations of child sex abuse by the late disc jockey and TV personality Jimmy Savile over six decades, describing him as a "predatory sex offender.” In mid-October, the metropolitian police stated they were pursuing over 400 lines of inquiry based on the testimony of 300 potential victims. Chris Patten, the head of the BBC’s government body called it “this great tsunami of filth.” BBC’s “Newsnight” was about to broadcast an expose last December – but BBC bosses spiked it, and incredibly, aired Christmas tributes to Savile instead.
While some sectors of the American economy have changed allegiances this presidential cycle in terms of their donations to the major political parties, one industry that hasn't changed its allegiances is media.
That probably doesn't come as a surprise to readers of this site but the numbers are still interesting nonetheless: