Should the mainstream media lead, to borrow a term from religion, a great awakening? Yes, in a sense, suggested longtime journalist Steven Waldman in a Thursday Washington Monthly piece. “Donald Trump and his campaign have pushed the idea that each of us has our own truth, or ‘alternative facts,’” wrote Waldman. “Suddenly I feel like journalists are the most religious people in America. I don’t mean that journalists are suddenly enamored with the supernatural, but rather that we’ve re-embraced the idea that there’s a thing called ‘truth’ -- an absolute value that lives above and apart from the world of framing and spin.”
By Tom Blumer | | January 28, 2017 | 8:28 PM EST
A January 24 item in the East Bay Times, which serves the San Francisco East Bay area, wondered: "What’s behind the spate of recent restaurant closures?" While it didn't ignore the problem, the article made only glancing references to current and planned increases in state and city minimum wages. Preliminary year-end statistics at the U.S. government's Bureau of Labor Statistics show that Bay area restaurant industry employment and even general retail employment have fallen, and are possibly headed towards a steep decline. One has to wonder how obvious things will have to get before the press takes the negative effects of the area's mandated sky-high minimums seriously.
By Tim Graham | | January 28, 2017 | 5:49 PM EST
Oliver Darcy at Business Insider reports that as much as the CNN Media team loves to boast about being the scolds of "fake news," CNN has been making ersatz claims about tying Fox News in inauguration ratings. It's a little odd to suggest Donald Trump is running an Alternative Reality Administration while you're citing Alternative Ratings.
By Clay Waters | | January 28, 2017 | 5:00 PM EST
Hysterical liberals are rushing to buy dystopian novels like 1984 and The Handmaid's Tale, regarding them as playbooks for the new Trump administration, and the New York Times is eagerly validating their fears: "...in recent months, [Handmaid's Tale author Margaret] Atwood has been hearing from anxious readers who see eerie parallels between the novel’s oppressive society and the current Republican administration’s policy goals of curtailing reproductive rights." But the NYT skipped a vital alternate reason why Handmaid is selling more of late: It's coming to Hulu this year.
By P.J. Gladnick | | January 28, 2017 | 3:35 PM EST
"HE WILL NOT DIVIDE US! HE WILL NOT DIVIDE US! HE WILL NOT DIVIDE US! HE WILL NOT DIVIDE US!"
Try to imagine Voltaire or Thomas Paine robotically chanting an inane mantra and you get an idea of how silly it is. However, that is what Shia LaBeouf's livestream camera cult is doing outside the Museum of Moving of the Image in the Astoria section of Queens, New York. When the livestream camera cultists are not mindlessly reciting that chant they are either loafing around doing basically nothing or getting arrested as happened to LaBeouf on January 26.
By Dan Gainor | | January 28, 2017 | 3:30 PM EST
Poor Mike Godwin. Godwin is the creator of “Godwin’s Law.” It started as a guide to online discussions, making it clear that the longer a debate went on, the more likely someone was to invoke Hitler or Nazis. The rule grew to include the idea that such a statement ended the debate and the first person to Hitler lost.
Fast forward to 2017 and politics looks like a Producers casting session, with the singing Hitlers in one conversation and the dancing Hitlers in another. (If you were unfortunate enough to see the Mel Brooks remake, I feel sorry for you. Go watch the original.)
By Tom Blumer | | January 28, 2017 | 3:03 PM EST
All that "non-partisan" posturing, and they couldn't even get CNN to buy it. On Friday, CNN presented a segment on the 44th annual March for Life before it began. The press usually ignores the march's existence until after it has taken place, typically barely recognizes it afterwards, and almost invariably insists on describing crowd sizes which have often been in the hundreds of thousands as mere "thousands." The network's Brianna Keilar's acknowledged that the previous week's Women's March was really "the liberal Women's March."
By Christian Toto | | January 28, 2017 | 1:15 PM EST
Sundance shines its spotlight on a film depicting Texas secessionists in the ugliest light possible. Talk about lousy timing. Films can take years from inspiration to the big screen. Sometimes during that process the zeitgeist catches up to a project in amazing ways.
By Katie Yoder | | January 28, 2017 | 11:58 AM EST
In 2016, the media provided an embarrassing amount of coverage for the March for Life. So this year, as in years past, MRC Culture captured the crowds on camera for the American public to see the pro-life movement for themselves.
By Kristine Marsh | | January 28, 2017 | 11:30 AM EST
Wednesday night on CNN, Van Jones had The View’s Whoopi Goldberg on his special townhall style series The Messy Truth as his guest. The show, which admirably attempts to get people from both sides of the political aisle talking to eachother, unfortunately only made the truth messier with Whoopi, who made a number of dubious and patently false claims.
By Clay Waters | | January 28, 2017 | 11:01 AM EST
What a difference an election makes: The annual pro-life March for Life, long ignored by the New York Times, led the paper’s National section on Saturday, driven by a little political star power in the form of Trump counselor Kellyanne Conway and Vice President Mike Pence. Jeremy Peters and Yamiche Alcindor’s account was teased with a photo from the rally on the front page: “Thousands March Against Abortion.” The headline read “A Rallying Cry, and an Act of Defiance.” The text box: “Anti-Abortion Marchers Take Hope In Trump’s Outspoken Support."
By Brent Bozell and Tim Graham | | January 28, 2017 | 8:05 AM EST
In HBO's The Young Pope, the implausible American pontiff Lenny Belardo (Pope Pius XIII) proposes to Cardinal Voiello – a “reformist” prelate -- that all the gay priests be drummed out of the priesthood. The script reads like a mudslinging advertisement against the Vatican.
The cardinal protests: “It would be a war that would leave the ground littered with corpses, Holy Father. Do you want to know how many corpses would litter the ground?” The pontiff replies “Two-thirds of the clergy.” Since even recent gay-activist surveys plot the LGBT segment of the population at 3.5 percent, that number is ludicrous.
Shredding Civility: PBS's David Brooks Says Trump Is Either '1984' Tyrant or Egotistical 5-Year-Old BratBy Tim Graham | | January 27, 2017 | 11:24 PM EST
The first week of a presidency is usually described as a “honeymoon period,” but the liberal media are still on a war footing. There is no romance. On the PBS NewsHour on Friday night, liberal analyst Mark Shields insisted Trump was already a punchline by the second day, and pseudoconservative analyst David Brooks was trying to decide if Trump was a dictator or an egotistical 5-year-old brat.
By Tom Johnson | | January 27, 2017 | 10:17 PM EST
Daily Kos founder and publisher Markos Moulitsas is pleased that “several media operations have decided to join reality [by] calling the Trump regime’s lies what they are -- lies.” Still stuck in unreality, according to Kos, is NPR, which, he alleged on Wednesday, “remains steadfastly committed to enabling the ruling regime’s propaganda efforts.” Kos fumed that “conservatives rally around conservative media, unified in message and purpose, while liberals consider themselves all superior because they listen to the soothing blather of NPR…Never forget --supposedly ‘liberal’ news outlets like CNN, the New York Times, and NPR were some of the biggest purveyors of bullshit stories on Clinton’s emails.”
By Tom Blumer | | January 27, 2017 | 9:19 PM EST
One of the more revealing side effects of the 2016 presidential campaign, and especially the November election, is how old-line liberal publications which once had at least a veneer of respectability have completely gone off the deep end. Readers have come to expect completely unhinged, error-ridden material to routinely appear at places like Salon.com. But at the Atlantic? Beyond occasional shorter blog posts at its web site, we didn't used to see much of it. But there's no other way to describe a deeply flawed January 24 op-ed appearing there which sharply criticized ultrasound images of unborn children as an example of "how effectively politicians have used visual technology to redefine what counts as 'life.'"