The inevitable question about radio blowhard and MSNBC action hero Ed Schultz -- is he dense or dishonest? That he's both is also a distinct possibility.
Schultz piously fulminated against Republican congressman Peter King of New York on his radio show yesterday for suggesting that public policy enacted in response to mob demands from the streets, as occurred during the '60s that liberals still consider so groovy, man, isn't such a great idea (audio clips after page break) --
The New York Times simply can’t help themselves. They simply cannot leave their opinions out of supposedly objective pieces of journalism. Which begs the question, if the bulk of the articles contain this type of reporting, why does the Times even bother having a separate opinion section?
In a profile piece on Tucson gunman Jared Loughner titled, Looking Behind the Mug-Shot Grin of an Accused Killer, the Times takes two separate occasions to toss in a casual link to ‘right-wing groups’ (h/t Byron York).
The first cheap shot shows up on the first page of a seven page profile:
He became an echo chamber for stray ideas, amplifying, for example, certain grandiose tenets of a number of extremist right-wing groups — including the need for a new money system and the government’s mind-manipulation of the masses through language.
The second instance addresses the currency issue and casts blame on the right as well :
As our readers know, to celebrate the 5th anniversary of NewsBusters, we have started a weekly Five for Five feature to countdown the blog's top twenty five posts. Last week we began with the top five media flubs caught by NewsBusters and on Friday we continue with the top five posts embarrassing the media.
As part of the anniversary celebration, we have picked out a couple posts from each of the five categories and asked the authors to reflect back on writing them up. They share their thoughts on how they caught the particular media moment and describe the impact their post had.
On this weekend's Fox News Watch, panelist Jim Pinkerton cited this NewsBusters item in which Joe Scarborough passed along the comment from an unnamed conservative insider questioning "what the hell was [Rand Paul] doing on MSNBC?", a reference to Paul's appearance on the Rachel Maddow show in which he made comments on the 1964 Civil Rights Act that have caused controversy. The irony of course is that Scarborough is himself an MSNBC host. H/t NB reader Gat New York.
Pinkerton and his fellow News Watch panelists got a chuckle out of this NewsBuster's fond wish which concluded the item: "Oh to be an olive when Joe and Rachel sip martinis together at the MSNBC TGIF."
On February 2nd, NBC correspondent Pete Williams announced Breaking News during the 5 PM ET edition of Hardball: the Christmas Day Bomber, Umar Abdul Mutallab, was giving fresh, actionable information to the FBI which the United States was in turn "aggressively chasing down."
Less than an hour later, this NewsBuster blogged on the matter, wondering whether by leaking the news, "the Obama administration compromised national security," in an attempt to deflect the criticism it had been receiving for mirandizing Mutallab rather than treating him like the enemy combatant he is.
On today's Fox News Watch, panelist Jim Pinkerton gave a "hats off" to this NewsBuster for being first to raise the issue.
On Friday, this NewsBuster noted how Pres. Obama, questioned at a news conference in Japan, twice refused to say whether he thought the United States' dropping of atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki was "the right decision."
Yesterday on Fox News Watch, Jim Pinkerton noted the NewsBusters nugget. The Fox News contributor and New America Foundation fellow observed that PBO's failure had huge implications for America's nuclear deterrent.
Video after the jump of PBO's duck-and-cover at the Tokyo press conference.
Mika justified her nanny-state proposal of a tax on fatty foods by saying eating habits are not a matter of personal choice because others must bear the health care cost. Finkelstein's response: kill two birds with one stone by getting government out of the health care business.
Regarding the White House war on Fox News, Finkelstein observed that the White House should know its strategy has backfired when the likes of Helen Thomas and Dan Rather have defended Fox.
Mark complimented Mika on exposing the 99 44/100ths liberal environment she experienced at CBS, but chided her for denying that the network has an agenda. A discussion of the MSM media bubble ensues.
For days, Scarborough had been lambasting Republicans for going after Pres. Obama on his speech to schoolchildren. Finkelstein argued that it was not so much the potential for indoctrination as the cult of personality which was objectionable. He pointed out that the Obama-centric study guide for the speech was of a piece with messianic image that the president has allowed to grow up around him, going back to the presidential campaign and his famous "this was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal" speech.
After several media outlets discovered the Democratic congressman from Florida uses his in-laws' house in a Florida retirement community to meet residency requirements, he has sent out an e-mail (entire text here) asking for campaign donations - alleging it's his "strong and vocal stands in favor of impeaching President Bush and Vice President Cheney" that has made him a target of "ultra-conservative" media.
"In the eyes of the right wing, I am seen, along with Rep. Kucinich, as one of the symbols of the impeachment fight. They believe that if they defeat me - they defeat our cause," Wexler wrote. "For the last week, I've been relentlessly targeted by ultra-conservative radio and television hosts, as well as my local media. It has taken a toll. Now more than ever, I need your support to help me stay in Congress to represent your voice in Washington."