Tom Blumer has written for several national online publications  primarily on business, economics, politics and media bias. He has had his own blog, BizzyBlog.com, 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
January 13, 2016, 3:17 AM EST

In October 2013, late-night PBS talk-show host and author Tavis Smiley told Sean Hannity at Fox News that "The data is going to indicate sadly that when the Obama administration is over, black people will have lost ground in every single leading economic indicator category."

On Monday, on the eve of what has been said to be President Barack Obama's final State of the Union address, Smiley was again on Fox News, this time with Megyn Kelly. Sadly, 27 months later, his message hasn't changed, nor has its fundamental truth.

January 11, 2016, 10:27 AM EST

Despite reports and statements containing the term coming out of Germany during the past week, searches at the Associated Press on "no-go zones," and even on "no-go," return nothing. The New York Times has no recent report identifying European no-go zones, but has at least demonstrated that it might be getting over its nearly allergic reaction to the term by observing that parts of Ramadi, Iraq recently liberated from Islamic State control are "no-go zones because they have yet to be searched for booby traps left by the jihadists."

"No-go zones" again became news because, despite U.S. media outlets continued denial of their existence, several officials in Germany once again used the term.

January 9, 2016, 11:27 AM EST

At the Associated Press, as seen at its "Top Business News" page Friday afternoon, Christopher Rugaber opened his song of praise for yesterday's jobs report ("US EMPLOYERS HIRE AT ROBUST PACE, DEFYING GLOBAL TRENDS") as follows: "American employers added a robust 292,000 jobs in December, suggesting that the U.S. economy is so far defying global weakness and growing solidly. ..."

Rugaber's opening sentence has since been revised, but the damage was done — or, being cynical, the mission was accomplished. Thanks to Rugaber's original opening sentence being used at AP-subscribing outlets nationwide, most news readers, listeners and viewers will believe that decent job growth has been translating into "solid" overall economic growth. Too bad that hasn't been the case — and there are reasons to believe that it will continue to not be the case.

January 9, 2016, 8:47 AM EST

Yesterday at NewsBusters, Ken Shepherd noted how quickly and gleefully the New York Times jumped ("an impressive sprint capping off a year of solid job growth") on December's relatively strong jobs report.

The Associated Press joined the parade — "US EMPLOYERS HIRE AT BLISTERING PACE, DEFYING GLOBAL TRENDS" – and kept its story as its lead in its Business "Top Stories" until late afternoon. While that treatment was defensible, the absence of the wire service's terse coverage of the government's disturbing wholesale sales and inventories report from the "Top 10" roster wasn't. Clearly, the good news stays, while the bad news gets memory-holed at the Administration's Press.

January 8, 2016, 12:33 PM EST

Tricia Bishop, the deputy editorial page editor at Baltimore Sun, also writes a biweekly column. Bishop was impressed three years ago when the White Plains, New York-based Journal News published an interactive online map showing "the addresses (and names) of all pistol permit holders" in two Empire State counties.

Very few others were. Though the outrage over the paper's move was (excuse the expression) fast and furious, the Journal News kept the database up for almost a month before removing it, and "somehow" allowed its raw data to be leaked. It hardly seems a coincidence that the paper laid off 26 employees, including the editor responsible for publishing the map, just eight months later. Bishop, apparently oblivious to the blowback and other consequences, wants to extend the idea to all gun owners nationwide.

January 6, 2016, 4:29 PM EST

Today was a fairly brisk day for economic data, as four noteworthy reports were released. One of them contained good news, but with a heavy asterisk. The other three were either not good, period, or came in below expectations.

Readers here probably know which one the Associated Press was still carrying at its Top Business Stories page as of 2:39 p.m. Of course, it was the one with good news.

January 6, 2016, 11:06 AM EST

In November and December, the New York Daily News characterized the NRA and its CEO Wayne LaPierre as a jihadists and terrorists. Now it has set its sights on Republican Party presidential candidates and leaders who are defending the plain, Supreme Court-upheld wording of the Constitution's Second Amendment and Congress's power to make laws over lawless presidential actions.

Wednesday's NYDN headline: "GOP: The Party of Pro-Death":

January 5, 2016, 11:08 PM EST

On Monday, the Institute for Supply Management's Manufacturing Index for December came in showing contraction for the second consecutive month, and with a slightly worse reading (48.2 percent, versus 48.6 percent in November; any reading below 50 percent signifiies contraction). These two results followed readings which just slipped over the expansion bar (50.2 and 50.1 percent, respectively) in September and October.

The average of the past four months' readings is 49.3. In a situation that was not as troubling in late February 2007, David Leonhardt at the New York Times declared that "For Manufacturing, a Recession Has Arrived." But after yesterday's ISM report, as readers here would sadly expect, no Times reporter bothered to elaborate on the latest in an awful string of ISM manufacturing reports, instead posting wire service dispatches from Reuters and the Associated Press which appear not to have made the Old Gray Lady's print edition.

January 5, 2016, 5:31 PM EST

At the Associated Press, Wisconsin-based reporter Scott Bauer, who has spent the better part of the past five years describing Badger State Governor Scott Walker as "polarizing," has been given the opportunity to get involved with 2016 presidential campaign coverage.

Leftists and Democrats rarely earn negative descriptors in Bauer's reports, while Republicans and conservatives receive them routinely. Now that he has been tasked to cover Ted Cruz, Bauer has been using a scattershot approach, employing a plethora of negative terms, apparently in search of one or two which will cast the the Texas Senator in the most negative light possible.

January 4, 2016, 10:40 AM EST

Since last night, Matt Drudge has teased his link to CNN's coverage of Hillary Clinton "heckler" Katherine Prudhomme O'Brien with the following headline: "Clinton heckled in NH by rape survivor."

The headline at CNN's story by Dan Merica is quite different: "NH GOP lawmaker heckles Hillary Clinton over Bill Clinton's sex scandals." The headline difference is not unusual. What is unusual is that Merica's article as currently posted never refers to O'Brien as a "rape survivor" (which, by the way, she has said since at least 2000). Since Drudge usually refers in some way to a story's content when he writes his headlines, this opens up the possibility that earlier versions of Merica's story did mention O'Brien's rape survivor status, and that CNN censored it. What we do know is that CNN and Merica made sure that readers of their story wouldn't know that Juanita Broaddrick credibly accused Bill Clinton of raping her, and that they treated Clinton's one-man war on women sexual history as entirely "alleged" (bolds are mine):

January 3, 2016, 12:46 PM EST

In his most recent Washington Post column, Fareed Zakaria, who also works at CNN, told readers that "working-class whites" can no longer handle the fact that they're not an "elite group" any more, and that this loss of status explains an alarming increase in suicide in their ranks. Supposedly, these people support Donald Trump because his "Making America Great Again" is about putting them back on top again.

Assuming that Zakaria actually wrote what appeared in the Post — he was suspended for a single instance of plagiarism in 2012 and has been credibly accused of doing so dozens of other times — his awkward opening paragraph seems to say that Trump's main supporters are people who are tragically no longer with us:

January 2, 2016, 11:58 PM EST

A time-honored tactic in political TV ads is to use contrasting degrees of photographic exposure, one bright and snappy for your candidate and a darker hue, sometimes even going to old-fashioned black-and-white, for your opponent.

On December 29, at the Washington Post's Wonkblog, Max Ehrenfreund cited a conveniently timed "study" which looked at 2008 ads produced by and on behalf of GOP presidential candidate John McCain, and concluded that the McCain campaign and its supporters, by using such a tactic, were engaging in racism:

January 2, 2016, 2:19 AM EST

On Wednesday, Nate Cohn at the New York Times, who by some accounts is being anointed the next Nate Silver of polling, made a clumsy and despicable attempt to inject race into his political "analysis" of the Donald Trump phenomenon.

Cohn's tediously long writeup, which made Page A3 in the New York version of the Old Gray Lady's print edition on Thursday, attempted to identify and characterize Donald Trump supporters. Apparently troubled by finding that Trump's support crosses into a number of groups with whom Republican presidential candidates have usually fared poorly, he felt the need to go far afield for evidence of something sinister. Thus, he attempted to correlate the level of current support for Trump's presidential candidacy to regional levels of racism as seen in Google searches. That's right, Google searches — 9-12 years ago.

January 1, 2016, 9:19 PM EST

The Wall Street Journal ran a blockbuster story Tuesday afternoon ("U.S. Spy Net on Israel Snares Congress") about how the Obama administration's National Security Agency's "targeting of Israeli leaders swept up the content of private conversations with U.S. lawmakers." In other words, the NSA spied on Congress. As talk-show host and commentator Erick Erickson drily observed: "Congress began impeachment proceedings on Richard Nixon for spying on the opposing political party."

Whether or not Congress has the nerve to defend itself and the Constitution's separation of powers, what the Journal reported is objectively a major story. Yet the Associated Press ignored it on Tuesday, and most of Wednesday. Finally, at 7:15 p.m. Eastern Time on Wednesday, the AP ran a story by Erica Werner — about how Republicans are planning to investigate the matter.

December 31, 2015, 3:50 PM EST

This week, the Associated Press wrapped up a year of largely pathetic business reporting with three items exemplifying the wire service's habits of data-twisting, sloppiness, and convenient omissions.

A deceptive AP post-Christmas story pretended that Christmas-season "spending" was twice as high as anyone else has predicted. A report on pending home sales omitted a concerned comment from a normally incurably optimistic economist at the National Association of Realtors. Finally, the AP appears to have ignored today's Chicago manufacturing report from the Institute for Supply Management, even though it came in at a level which has previously foreshadowed a nationwide recession.

December 31, 2015, 12:47 PM EST

In September, President Barack Obama "committed the U.S. to a new blueprint to eliminate poverty and hunger around the world" in a speech at a United Nations "global summit." A review of his speech's transcript indicates that while he acknowledged the ugly reality that "800 million men, women and children are scraping by on less than $1.25 a day," he made no mention of the fact that just three decades ago, the percentage of humanity in that condition was many time times greater.

A Washington Post item on October 5 reported, per the World Bank, that less than 10 percent of the world's population is in extreme poverty" for the first time ever. Both Obama and the Post failed to give credit where credit is due, namely to the Industrial Revolution and capitalism. In an Investor's Business Daily column last week, Terry Jones set the record straight (links are in original; bolds are mine):

December 30, 2015, 11:50 PM EST

Liberals and "progressives," who are supposedly big on dealing with "root causes," are apparently not interested in the root cause of their now-acknowledged problem of sexual harassment and abuse in their ranks.

At Acculturated.com, Carrie Lukas, managing director of the Independent Women’s Forum, contended that "liberals treat women worse" than do others in positions of power on the ideological spectrum because of "The Bill Clinton Effect" — an effect with so much staying power that "progressives" still won't dare mention its obvious impact, or even the Clintons' names.

December 30, 2015, 9:56 PM EST

The temperature in the Fairbanks, Alaska suburb of North Pole earlier today was apparently in the low-40s Fahrenheit.

It was then that Alexandra Sifferlin at Time.com reported the Alaska town's temperature as if it came from the North Pole. The only current evidence of Sifferlin's original grievous error at Time.com is a deliberately vague correction at the bottom of her post telling readers that "This article originally misidentified a temperature reading as belonging to the North Pole." Fortunately, ever-alert blogger Patterico excerpted the post as originally written (the link to North Pole, Alaska's conditions at Weather.com is in the original):

December 30, 2015, 12:48 PM EST

Establishment press pundits often wring their hands over how supposedly far to the right the Republican Party and conservatives in general have moved since the presidency of Ronald Reagan, that flaming moderate, to the point of claiming that Reagan would never be accepted by today's "wingnuts." They seem to actually believe this amusing nonsense.

In a classic example demonstrating where the real ideological shifts have taken place, the New York Times Editorial Board on Saturday expressed its wish to impose a $15-an-hour minimum wage on the entire nation. That really isn't a surprise to those who have seen so-called "progressives" move ever further to the left and out of the realm of common sense in recent times. But it might surprise many readers that the Times advocated a minimum wage of zero — that's right, expressed as "$0.00" for emphasis — in January 1987, during Reagan's second term.

December 29, 2015, 11:46 PM EST

Just one week after CNN's Don Lemon shut down a guest who dared to raise the issue, there is now an agreement across the ideological spectrum that if Hillary Clinton is going to use her husband Bill as a campaign surrogate and go after her opponents' real or imagined sexism, then, as the headline at liberal Ruth Marcus's Monday evening Washington Post column says, "Bill Clinton's sordid sexual history is fair game."

Meanwhile, a Wall Street Journal editorial, while citing Marcus's column, agrees: "if Mrs. Clinton wants everyone to forget about Bill’s harassment of women, she ought to stop playing the sexism card, or drop Bill as surrogate, or both."