Tom Blumer has written for several national online publications  primarily on business, economics, politics and media bias. He has had his own blog,, since 2005, and has been with NewsBusters since December 2005. Along the way, he's had a decades-long career in accounting, finance, training and development.

Latest from Tom Blumer
July 31, 2015, 11:11 PM EDT

On Thursday, Curtis Houck at NewsBusters noted how the Big Three networks and the two leading Spanish-language networks ignored the latest developments in the now 813 day-old IRS targeting scandal. As usual, only Fox News covered a congressional hearing on, in Fox's words, "the lack of accountability following the IRS targeting of tea party and other groups" as well as a federal judge's threat "to hold (IRS Commissioner John Koskinen and Justice Department attorneys in contempt of court for failing to produce status reports and Lois Lerner e-mails."

Not that this excuses the non-coverage, but if these outfits were relying as subscribers on the Associated Press to make sure that the contempt threat made by U.S. District Court Judge Emmet Sullivan got the visibility it deserved so they would be aware of it and use it, the wire service's Stephen Ohlemacher let them down — and, I would argue, deliberately so.

July 31, 2015, 6:44 PM EDT

These economics reporters at the Associated Press have become experts at deadpan humor.

Earlier today, I noted how the wire service's Christopher Rugaber told readers, in the wake of a government report showing the lowest wage and benefit increases on record, that "the job market is not yet back to full health." No kidding, Chris. On top of that, the AP's Martin Crutsinger reacted to yesterday's tepid report on gross domestic product, which was accompanied by significant downward revisions to the past three years, by expressing "concerns that the U.S. economy has entered a period of historically slow growth." Dude, we have been living through historically slow growth for six years, ever since the recession officially ended in the middle of 2009.

July 31, 2015, 11:22 AM EDT

Christopher Rugaber at the Associated Press and the "expert" he quoted in his writeup on the government's awful Employment Cost Index report seemed to be taking their cues from Steven Wright's deadpan comedy act. The problem, of course, is that they were writing and saying isn't funny at all.

Rugaber, with his "expert" help, assembled an impressive array of understatements and misstatements in the wake of the smallest reported quarterly increase in U.S. worker pay on record. His worst characterization: "[T]he job market is not yet back to full health."

July 30, 2015, 11:46 PM EDT

Ohio's newspapers have reported that two state legislators, one Democrat and one Republican, are cosponsoring a bill to defund Planned Parenthood in the Buckeye State. But they have mostly failed to note the key points made by Cleveland Democrat Bill Patmon in his inspiring, passionate speech at an Ohio Right to Life rally announcing his cosponsorship.

You see, Mr. Patmon is black, and he has had it up to here with the hypocrisy of the "Black Lives Matter" movement, especially in their failure to denounce the disproportionate slaughter in the U.S. of black babies through abortion.

July 30, 2015, 5:45 PM EDT

The bar-lowering in the business press continues.

In the wake of today's disappointing news from the government on U.S. economic growth, an email from failed to properly describe reported second-quarter growth, and falsely characterized today's results as "solid":

July 29, 2015, 11:04 PM EDT

On his Tuesday night show, with the help of Kelly Riddell of the Washington Times, Bill O'Reilly of Fox News described how the "Black Lives Matter" movement sustains itself. The rest of the press wants readers, listeners and viewers to presume that it is a self-sustaining, grass-roots movement. It isn't.

O'Reilly also noted that megastars Jay-Z and Beyoncé, numbers 28 and 29, respectively, on the Forbes list of top-paid celebrities, are supporting the movement, which describes itself as "grass-roots" but is really the ultimate in Astroturf. Also at the end of this post, following up on one I did on ESPN's Stephen A. Smith last week, I have posted Smith's original six-minute radio-show rant on how selective and tyrannical the movement is.

July 29, 2015, 6:23 PM EDT

The news out of Venezuela has apparently become so grim that the arguably Chavista-sympathetic press barely bothers to report it in any kind of sutstantive fashion. Inflation has gone wild, the level of violent crime has become frightening, and the government has taken to jailing citizens who dare to tweet their dissatisfaction with the regime of Nicolas Makuro (note that the linked report was prepared by a freelance journalist and not one of the worldwide wires; where have they been while this has been going on?).

One telling Associated Press dispatch from Venezuela last week concerned what's left of the nation's food distribution system. The item revealed that the press refuses to get over its classist obsessions, even as an entire country falls apart. A video seen after the jump will show that the government's "solution" has no realistic chance of fixing the problem.

July 29, 2015, 3:46 PM EDT

Yet another important economic statistic confidently predicted to rise has fallen — hard.

This time it was June's pending sales of existing homes. Just in time for summer, they were predicted to increase by a seasonally adjusted 1.0 percent to 1.5 percent. Instead they fell by 1.8 percent, the steepest drop since December 2013. Additionally, May's original 0.9 percent increase was revised down to 0.6 percent. This brought out yet another appearance of the dreaded "U-Word" ("unexpectedly") — accompanied, as usual, by excuses delivered by Victoria Stilwell at Bloomberg News (bolds are mine):

July 28, 2015, 11:54 PM EDT

In some areas of the country, Planned Parenthood has gone on the offensive against local and regional news outlets in an attempt to minimize the exposure of damning undercover videos produced by the Center for Medical Progress. They are telling these outlets that the videos "should not be aired."

This is an attempt at corporate censorship which the establishment press would treat as important news if almost any other business — for-profit or not-for-profit — made such an attempt.

July 28, 2015, 6:08 PM EDT

The Conference Board's July Consumer Confidence report released earlier today threw a heavy dose of cold water on the idea that the economy might finally achieve a broad-based, genuine recovery this year.

Despite month after month of "all is well" reporting — and excuse-making when all hasn't been well — from the U.S. business press, the American public has apparently finally figured out that all is far from well. July's overall reading of 90.9 was 8.9 points lower than June's 99.8, the biggest single-month drop in almost four years — something Reuters and Bloomberg News noted, but which, as would be expected, the Associated Press, the nation's de facto news gatekeeper, failed to report.

July 28, 2015, 5:05 PM EDT

The Washington Post's Dana Milbank is obsessed with tearing Wisconsin Governor and 2016 GOP presidential candidate Scott Walker down, and is clearly not above distorting the facts to make his pathetic points.

Milbank's latest tirade is about how Walker is allegedly "so dangerous" because he doesn't like unions. That's based on quite a bit of direct experience, which has included death threats against him and his family, frequent harassment of his parents, and attempts by labor to intimidate businesses which wouldn't publicly express support for their cause.

July 27, 2015, 11:52 PM EDT

I guess the slogan of labor has changed from "Look for the union label" to "Look for the union waiver."

The Los Angeles Times published a long front-page story early this morning on an issue some people thought disappeared after its initial exposure two months ago. The issue is whether union workers should be exempt from minimum wage laws, especially the sky-high minimums being enacted in some U.S. cities. To those who have been unaware of the issue up until now and are thinking that all of this must be a joke — it's not. It's just that the press, which not coincidentally has a higher percentage of union members than the private sector as a whole, has barely noted it.

July 27, 2015, 3:17 PM EDT

Based on how they handled it today, it's pretty obvious that the Associated Press's Ken Sweet and his wire service's headline writers want the lowest possible number of users of their reporting — consumers and subscribing print and broadcast outlets — to know about the mainland Chinese stock market's historically deep 8.5 percent Monday dive.

It took four paragraphs for Sweet to get to the specifics. What preceded it was clearly intended to create an "It's No Big Deal, so you can move on to something else" impression.

July 27, 2015, 12:32 AM EDT

2016 GOP presidential candidate and former Texas Governor Rick Perry is fighting a legal battle against an out-of-control Lone Star State county. That county's prosecutor has sued Perry, claiming that a) he committed an illegal act of "coercion" by threatening to veto legislation funding a "public integrity" office headed by Travis County's Rosemary Lehmberg, who was convicted of drunk driving in 2013 but refused to resign; and b) that he committed another illegal act by carrying out his veto promise. In effect, the County wants to criminalize Perry's exercise of his then-gubernatorial duties.

A Texas Court threw out the "coercion" contention on Friday. The Associated Press's Will Weissert was clearly quite displeased.

July 26, 2015, 10:00 AM EDT

Veteran journalist John Harwood, according to his Twitter home page, covers "Washington and national politics for CNBC and the New York Times."

Saturday morning, despite all of his experience, Harwood tweeted a question (HT Twitchy) so naive that a freshman journalism student would have been embarrassed to ask it:

July 25, 2015, 11:48 PM EDT

In a speech at a Republican Lincoln Day dinner in West Virginia earlier this week, Murray Energy Corp. founder and CEO Robert Murray decried the Obama administration's determination to, as described at the financial news site (to be clear, no relation to Saturday Night Live), "bypass the states and their utility commissions, the U.S. Congress and the Constitution in favor of putting the U.S. EPA in charge of the nation's electric grid."

In the establishment press, Murray's speech was only covered in a single snarky paragraph by Darren Goode at the Politico titled "Don't Hold Back Now" — obviously attempting to paint Murray as unreasonable and extreme — and a writeup at the Wheeling (WV) Intelligencer. After all, what does Murray know? He's only the head of the largest company in an industry which is still responsible for fueling 39 percent of America's electrical grid, and the majority of it in many states. Who would want to give him any visibility, as if he has anything valuable to say? Well, I do.

July 25, 2015, 10:41 AM EDT

I'm virtually certain that he wouldn't dream of it, but the Associated Press's Josh Lederman seriously needs to consider correcting two extremely embarrassing paragraphs he wrote in his coverage of President Obama's appearance on Jon Stewart's Daily Show earlier this week.

At the 15:03 mark of the Comedy Central video following the jump, Obama treated Stewart as if he's a legitimate journalist, telling him that "It's not your job to focus on the three-quarters of a loaf or half a loaf that we get. Your job is to point out what we still haven't gotten." Actually, after enduring the video, it seems far more correct to say that Stewart's job was to make it look like he was challenging Obama by giving him a bit of grief several minutes earlier about the still-scandalous situation at the Veterans Administration, and then to give him a virtual open mic the rest of the way. But I digress.

July 24, 2015, 11:50 PM EDT

The press — especially the Associated Press — wants everyone to know that the email controversy "swirling" around her is partisan and distracting. Why anyone would worry about its national security or legal implications is almost completely lost on them. That's their story, and they've been sticking to it for months.

The latest installment from the AP came tonight from Lisa Lerner, Eric Tucker and three other contributing reporters. Even though it's at the core of the firestorm over her undisclosed use of a private server out of her home, the term "national security" didn't appear until Paragraph 17 — and even then it was in a quote from a Republican. The big problem, from the AP team's perspective, is capsulized in their report's pity-party headline and opening paragraphs (bolds are mine):

July 24, 2015, 6:48 PM EDT

Thanks to year-over-year declines in manufacturing orders, manufacturing shipments, and wholesale sales, along with bloated inventories, apologists for the current condition of the U.S. economy are down to three defenses supposedly demonstrating that all is still really well after yet another rough first quarter (once again excused away as due to supposedly historically awful winter weather).

One of the three is that the housing market, particularly for new homes, is in a genuine recovery. Effective today, we can scratch at least the new-home element of that claim. The Census Bureau told us today that seasonally adjusted new-home sales fell by 7 percent in June, after May's originally strong figure was also revised down by 5 percent. The raw data showed that the number of new homes sold in June — supposedly peak season for new home purchases — was the same as the number sold in February.

July 23, 2015, 3:18 PM EDT

The press's favorite abortion questions usually have nothing to do with the 700,000-plus terminations of preborn babies' lives which take place each year in the U.S. (Note: The real figure is likely quite higher, because reporting is voluntary.) Especially when the person interviewed is a Republican or conservative, abortion questions focus heavily on the fewer than 1% of all abortions which are performed because of rape and incest. This is the equivalent of a news organization focusing all of its attention on a single house fire while an entire city a few miles away burns out of control.

2016 GOP presidential candidate Carly Fiorina had no interest in playing this game with Jake Tapper on Tuesday. In the process, she put on a clinic which should be mandatory viewing for any Republican or conservative who is in or wants to have a career in politics.