The Washington Post might lament the rise of extremism in politics, of bitterness and incivility, that our politics are “broken.” If they really meant that, then why promote Ta-Nehisi Coates?
There he is, on the front of Thursday’s Style section, being honored for a huge article in The Atlantic magazine demanding black Americans get reparations from white Americans for ancient sins that happened long before today’s Americans of all colors were born. He’s bitter, he’s extreme, and he has a racial animus. And the Post loves him for it.
The Sunday Washington Post Magazine has a new, larger design, which allows for a bigger picture of Obama favorite Samantha Power, the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations. The first sign that Post writer Manuel Roig-Franzia’s going to play it soft: he never mentions that Power called Hillary Clinton a “monster” in 2008.
Or the first sign might be the goopy copy about how she is “one of her generation’s most dazzling diagnosticians” of government failings. (Here again, Manuel leaves out that she's attacking Clinton failings.) To be precise, our government’s failures includes a failure to pass woolly-headed treaties like a ban on land mines. Power is learning that doesn’t exactly work:
Friday’s Washington Post carried a large article with color photographs of Jesus-bashing author Reza Aslan called “The Book of Reza.” Post reporter Manuel Roig-Franzia mocked “the astonishingly absurd questions lobbed at him” by Fox News religion correspondent Lauren Green, asking why a Muslim would write about Jesus.
Aslan told the Post he held Fox in low esteem (like almost every leftist). “I know what Fox News is about,” he says. “This is a network that has spun fear-mongering about Muslims into ratings gold for 10 years.” But this didn't end up being a puff piece. Roig-Franzia found that the “absurd” Fox network accomplished something notable. Aslan implausibly inflated his academic resume, and then arrogantly dismissed he’d done anything unethical. Aslan is exposed:
"A Hoodie. A Symbol. A Museum Piece? What will become of Trayvon Martin's sweatshirt, the latest piece of trial evidence to capture the public's fascination?" That's how the editors of the Washington Post-owned free tabloid Express grabbed the eyeballs of Washington Metrorail riders this morning.
Manuel Roig-Franzia's cover story on page 12 -- "Iconic Evidence Has Unclear Fate: Supporters view Trayvon Martin's hoodie as more than a trial artifact" -- seems to be spun off from a July 31 Post Style section front-pager, "Where's the Evidence," which looked more broadly at "iconic exhibits" of evidence in high-profile trials such as the infamous glove in the O.J. Simpson murder trial or the Bushmaster rifle used by D.C. snipers John Allen Muhammad and Lee Boyd Malvo. But the closing paragraphs of Roig-Franzia's Express piece chiefly served as a vehicle for MSNBC host the Rev. Al Sharpton to promote his designs on Trayvon's hoodie, not to mention Sharpton's insistence that Martin is the Emmett Till of the millennial generation (emphasis mine):
On Thursday night, the Whitman-Walker Health Clinic will hold its annual “Be The Care” fundraiser honoring lesbian Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wisconsin) with its “Partner for Life” award. Once again this year, journalists don't seem to think supporting this is a conflict of interest.
This liberal-Democrat event is being co-chaired by former Washington Post reporter Ceci Connolly, and she and her husband, current Post reporter Manuel Roig-Franzia (whose recent book targeted Sen. Marco Rubio) are “presenting hosts.” So is Fox News host Greta Van Susteren. That title goes to people donating $2500 to this activist group.
In last week's Food section, the Washington Post's Manuel Roig-Franzia cooked up a look at various First Families and their respective Thanksgiving traditions. While overall not that bad a feature, the current residents at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue received a fair bit of mushy treatment, especially for incorporating the produce of their organic White House garden into the Thanksgiving feast. [h/t my lovely wife Laura, who is hard at work on our Thanksgiving feast today]
What's more there will be "No creamy, gloppy, fattening dressing, either," Roig-Franzia gushed approvingly. "Their fresh produce will be dappled with a dressing that would make a dietitian beam, blended from shallots, lemon juice, red wine vinegar and olive oil." The Post staffer likewise included some vignettes about the last Democratic first family, the Clintons, and how Mrs. Clinton kept a sense of down-home Southern sensibility even in the fancy finery of the executive mansion's dining room:
On the anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the Washington Post Magazine attacked conservative pro-life values on another front - by profiling the new "public face of American assisted suicide," Lawrence Egbert.
On January 22, the Washington Post Magazine's Manuel Roig-Franzia wrote a long profile of Lawrence Egbert, the former director of the Final Exit Network, who by his own admission has been present at 100 peoples' suicides, and "was responsible for signing off on all suicides" for the Final Exit Network.
In case you missed it, the Washington Post published a Birther-style hit piece on Thursday accusing Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fl.) of lying about when his parents moved from Cuba to Miami.
MSNBC's Chris Matthews invited the author, Manuel Roig-Franzia, to discuss his allegations on Friday's Hardball, and ended the segment by lauding over his guest, "You ought to get some kind of Pulitzer" (video follows with commentary):
The Style section of Monday's Washington Post has an enormous picture of Jimmy Carter with the simple headline "The Book of Jimmy." The Post is jarringly behind Carter's publicity curve for his latest book White House Diary, but reporter Manuel Roig-Franzia began with the usual goo from Carter's church in Plains, Georgia: "On those scattered weekends when Jimmy Carter isn't out enforcing Middle East harmony or slaying Guinea worms or compensating for presidential malaise with ex-presidential vim, the 86-year-old can be found in Sunday school."
Anyone who's paid attention to Carter would know that "enforcing Middle East harmony" is not the right description for someone who compares Israel to apartheid-era South Africa.
Readers who don't want a cavity from all that sugar might move on to the next story, but Roig-Franzia arrived at a sharper point in paragraph nine, after Carter has declared that America is the nation most committed to waging war in the entire world, and that the Iraq invasion was "horribly unnecessary" -- the reporter read Carter's book and finds that he's a preachy know-it-all:
When a woman writes a book in which she claims she had 15 abortions in 15 years, it’s amazing that The Washington Post can write a sympathetic account of her barrage of life-ending "choices" and save the moral judgment for pro-lifers. But that’s exactly what reporter Manuel Roig-Franzia did in Friday’s Post. In paragraph 44 of their profile of "abortion addict" Irene Vilar, the pro-life movement finally gets to speak – as a hateful cartoon.
Lately, he [her husband] has tried to shield her from "violent, hateful and utterly un-Christian comments" on blogs, he says. On the Internet, she has been called a "monster," "scuzzy," a "skank." A poster at USbacklash.org wrote that she is "one of the sickest people who ever lived, including Charles Manson, Jeffrey Dahmer, or any other murderer I can think of! Too bad one of her suicide attempts didn't take. . . . We hope she keeps trying!"
Australia is and has been, through both Democratic and Republican administrations a staunch and steadfast ally of the United States. The Aussies have fought alongside American forces in World War II, Korea, Vietnam, the first Gulf War, in Afghanistan and in Iraq, and the U.S. and Australia are partners in a free-trade agreement. Given that, readers of the Washington Post should reasonably expect reporters and editors at the paper to understand the propriety of President Bush hosting former Prime Minister John Howard at Blair House in the closing days of his administration, especially since Howard was in town to receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
The Post writer continued in his second paragraph by reminding readers of a gripe that liberal journalists have been fixated on even as President-elect Obama brushed off the "inconvenience" as no big deal:
So much for Washington Post staff writer Manuel Roig-Franzia waxing poetic about the tech-savvy younger generation of Communists in Cuba. "Party Elders Triumph in Cuba," as Raul Castro has been formally named the new dictator, a February 25 Post headline informs readers. Party elders?! That's language suitable for a story about the role of superdelegates in the presidential nomination process for the Democratic Party, not when describing window-dressing "elections" in one-party Communist dictatorships.
Roig-Franzia opened his article with a lament that a "younger generation" of Communists has been "bypassed" by the Geritol crowd:
HAVANA, Feb. 24 -- Cuba's revolutionary old guard consolidated its hold on power Sunday when the National Assembly bypassed a younger generation of politicians and named Fidel Castro's brother, Raúl, president and a hard-line communist first vice president.
MEXICO CITY, Feb. 20 -- They've traveled the world. Surfed the Web. Zinged text messages. And watched news direct from the BBC and CNN, rather than filtered through a government censor.
Bombarded by ideas from abroad, a generation of Cuban political leaders who came of age after Fidel Castro's 1959 revolution is preparing to inherit it. Many of them, now in their 40s and 50s, have developed a more open political outlook than their fathers, partly because of the thriving black market in outlawed Internet connections that in Cuba have cracked open a window on the world.
Imagine the ire the media would have, rightfully so, if George W. Bush, Karl Rove, and Dick Cheney (and Sean Hannity and whatever other liberal bogeymen the ultra-left fear) could even dream of, much less institute, a block-by-block patriotism patrol answerable to the U.S. government.
Of course that would not and could not ever happen under our Constitution. But the same essential thing was a building block of Fidel Castro's Marxist regime in Cuba, and, surprise, surprise, a Washington Post staff writer devoted an A-section article to its waning influence and substitute dictator Raul Castro's hope of reviving it.
CAMAGUEY, Cuba -- Children swarmed the table outside Blanca Peleaz's concrete home in this central Cuban city. There were cakes and cookies, gooey frosting and candy speckles, rare abundance in a place where food shortages are the norm.
The sweets came with a history lesson on a recent muggy evening during a celebration of the Cuban Revolution. Peleaz and other neighborhood adults told the youngsters about the Moncada Barracks raid that started it all. They told the little ones that the Communist Party would lead the nation to glory.
Then they sang.
"Marching, we move toward an ideal," the grown-ups blared, urging the youngsters to join in. "Onward, Cubans. Cuba will reward our heroism."
For decades, Peleaz and her mother before her have been keepers of Fidel Castro's communist message, using their position as the head of the neighborhood's Committee for the Defense of the Revolution, or CDR, as an ideological wedge into the minds of their neighbors. Now, in the twilight of Castro's reign, the fate of the CDRs could provide a clue about Cuba's future.
Covering Raul Castro's July 26 hour-long Revolution Day speech, the Washington Post characterized the fill-in dictator's latest speech as one that "hits capitalist notes while placating hard-line party loyalists." But in truth Castro's speech was the typical Communist agitprop fare: empty promises for more pay, a call for harder work from the people, and above all else, blaming the United States for the collectivist economy's failure.
"Wearing his trademark tinted eyeglasses and military uniform, Castro, 76, struck distinctly capitalist notes before tens of thousands of flag-waving Communist Party loyalists," reporter Manuel Roig-Franzia noted in his July 27 story, filed the day before from Camaguey, a city 350 miles east of Havana.
Yet from Roig-Franzia's article itself, it becomes clear Castro is not a Latin incarnation of Milton Friedman. A little more foreign investment is the only capitalist bone to be thrown Cuba's way.