Clay Waters was director of Times Watch, a former project of the Media Research Center.
Latest from Clay Waters
Here's your daily dose of liberal hysteria, courtesy of New York Times editorial page editor Andrew Rosenthal's Thursday evening post, "Grand, Old and Anti-Woman." Previously Rosenthal called Republican House Speaker John Boehner a racist for asking President Obama to delay a speech to Congress.
The partisan liberal news site Talking Points Memo managed to be tougher on President Obama's Thursday speech in Maryland than reporter Mark Landler of the New York Times, at least in his initial online filing on Thursday afternoon, "Obama Defends Energy Policy, Hitting Back at Presidential Candidates." TPM reporter Benjy Sarlin did the sort of aggressive fact-checking of Obama's claims that the Times reserves for Republican candidates and politicians.
Landler wrote for the Times:
Neil Munro of the Daily Caller reports on a double standard on religious-bashing ads in the New York Times involving Pamela Geller (pictured), the activist against radical Islam whose "venomous" rhetoric the Times finds offensive, especially after her involvement in the opposition to building a mosque a few blocks from Ground Zero.
New York Times reporter Jonathan Weisman portrayed conservative Republicans as reeling from the renewed focus on so-called women's issues, but only vaguely mentioned that Obama's approval ratings have actually slipped since the public focus on abortion and contraception, in his front-page story Thursday, "Women Figure Anew in Senate's Latest Battle."
New York Times media reporter Brian Stelter wrote a column for Wednesday's Business section on the "offensive figure" Rush Limbaugh ("After Apology, National Advertisers Are Still Shunning Limbaugh") on the radio host losing advertisers after his "slut" comment on birth-control activist Sandra Fluke was inflamed by the left.
But the Times has thus far ignored the counterexample raised by conservatives of comedian and HBO "Real Time" host Bill Maher, who used a far more vile word to describe Republican Sarah Palin in March 2011. (The word's very offensiveness makes it unprintable, unlike Limbaugh's comment, a standard of obscenity that actually shields Maher.)
Forget everything New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd has written before about Hillary Clinton. In 1996 Dowd was scathing about the disconnect between Hillary's self-serving role as secular saint, and the vengeful politician lurking behind the scrim.
But now Hillary is a feminist heroine (and perhaps a presidential candidate?) once again, at least in a battle with Republican pols suffering an "insane bout of mass misogyny," her term for Republican positions against forcing employers to pay for birth control, and legislation in some states requiring an ultrasound before an abortion: "Women have watched a chilling cascade of efforts in Congress and a succession of states to turn women into chattel, to shame them about sex and curb their reproductive rights."
The New York Times most apocalyptic environmental reporter Justin Gillis returned with another scary front-page story Wednesday. Last Christmas, Gillis penned a warning about Republicans imperiling climate research funding that environmental scientist Roger Pielke Jr.called "perhaps the worst piece of reporting I've ever seen in the Times on climate change."
His latest is even more urgent: "Sea Level Rise Seen as Threat to 3.7 Million." The story is based on research from Climate Central, which employs Heidi Cullen as chief climatologist. Cullen is notorious for suggesting in 2007 that meteorologists who doubt global warming should have their credentials revoked.
It was Mitt Romney's turn in the barrel for the New York Times's recurring front-page political profile feature, "The Long Run." Walmart-hostile reporter Michael Barbaro did the honors Saturday, scouring the former Massachusetts' governor's former associates and rivals in the Boston statehouse and devoting nearly 2,000 words to the same "sometimes awkward style and aloof manner" criticism that the Times has been uncovering for the last several months: "Legislators Recall Governor Who Didn't Mingle."
The New York Times focused on the "treacherous political ground" occupied by President Obama as the election draws closer, while proving wrong pro-Obama assumptions made in recent stories by Times reporters Susan Saulny and Jackie Calmes, in Tuesday's front-page poll analysis "Obama's Rating Falls as Poll Reflects Volatility," by Jim Rutenberg and Marjorie Connelly. But it also buried some interesting findings that defied the liberal conventional wisdom about social conservatism and women voters.
What does the New York Times have against Texas A&M, a rare public university whose student body leans right? Manny Fernandez reported Saturday from the campus in College Station, on an illegal immigrant who lost his bid for student body president: "Vying for Campus President, Illegal Immigrant Gets a Gamut of Responses." Who was to blame? A conservative student body who made him feel unwelcome.
Jose Luis Zelaya stood with a crowd of other students waiting to hear the news. It was election day at Texas A&M University here, and he was running for student body president. A victory for Mr. Zelaya, a 24-year-old graduate student from Honduras, would make history at Texas A&M: He would become its first Hispanic student body president -- and the first illegal immigrant to hold the position.
The New York Times went all-out Sunday to prove that "centrist women" were fleeing the GOP in droves. Reporter Susan Saulny and six other reporters from across the country filed "Centrist Women Tell of Disenchantment With G.O.P.," for Sunday's paper.
Quick question: Is the Times counting the woman featured in the story's top photograph at a "Rally for Women's Rights," holding a Planned Parenthood sign that says "Stop the War On Women!", as a "centrist"?
As the presidential campaign heats up, partisan double standards infect even seemingly innocuous New York Times stories, like the music playlists of Barack Obama and Republican Mitt Romney. Friday's online "Caucus" post by music critic Jon Pareles, accusing Romney's song choice of leaving out blacks and women.
It's "bull..." and "pernicious nonsense" to suggest the New York Times is the liberal equivalent of Fox News, says Editorial Page editor Andrew Rosenthal, because "Fox News presents the news in a way that is deliberately skewed to promote political causes, and the New York Times simply does not."
Rosenthal was one of several guests on a Freakonomics podcast back on February 16 (h/t Jim Romenesko) with the intriguing subject "How Biased Is Your Media?" (The 2006 book Freakonomics was the surprise best-selling collaboration between journalist Stephen Dubner and economist Steven Levitt.)
Friday's lead New York Times story by Robert Pear, "White House Set To Shape Debate Over Health Law," passed right over the fascinating fact that the White House is helping "coordinate plans for a prayer vigil, press conferences and other events outside the court." Whatever happened to the dangers of mixing religion and politics, which was all the Times could fret about when it came to the Catholic Church's opposition to paying for birth control for employees?
Linda Greenhouse the New York Times's former Supreme Court reporter (and left-wing ranter at commencement speeches), now writes a twice-a-month column for nytimes.com. Wednesday she hailed birth-control activist and new liberal martyr Sandra Fluke as a civil rights pioneer on the level of (naturally) Anita Hill, while tarring Rush Limbaugh as a thug, in "Accidental Heroines."
Departing New York Times Jerusalem bureau chief Ethan Bronner filed Thursday's off-lead front-page story from the West Bank town of Ramallah, passing on yet another sympathy note for the Palestinians, whose left-wing cause for statehood and against Israeli "occupation" is no longer being trumpeted as loudly in the wake of the tumult in the region: "Mideast Din Drowns Out Palestinians."
The above-the-fold photo featured two Israeli soldiers firing orange flame at "Palestinian stone throwers" in the West Bank....from a clash last month. A photo of a Palestinian "protester" throwing stones was relegated to the jump page.
The New York Times defended the Texas branches of Planned Parenthood, the nation's largest abortion provider, on the front page Thursday: "Women in Texas Losing Options For Health Care" was reported by Pam Belluck and Emily Ramshaw, a reporter for the Texas Tribune, which produces a twice-weekly local section for the Texas edition of the Times.
Ramshaw was last covered in Times Watch in January, lamenting the "bureaucratic nightmare" instigated by a pro-life law. (When was the last time the Times complained about overregulation?)
"Number of U.S. Hate Groups Is Rising, Report Says," New York Times Atlanta-based Kim Severson reported Thursday. But that "report" was not some government finding, but came straight from The Southern Poverty Law Center, a left-wing activist group whose fund-raising is based on finding as many dangerous right-wing groups as possible.