Washington Examiner’s ‘Mainstream Media Scream’ with the MRC’s Assessment: Jan-Jun 2015 Archive

Since late January of 2012, the Washington Examiner’s Paul Bedard has once a week featured a “Mainstream Media Scream” selection in his “Washington Secrets” column. For each pick, usually posted online on Monday, I provide an explanation and recommend a “scream” rating (scale of one to five).

This post contains the “Mainstream Media Screams” for January through June 2015. The newest ones, starting in July of 2016, are here. “Mainstream Media Screams” for January to June 2016; for July to December 2015. (2012-2014 are featured on MRC.org: For 2014; for June 17, 2013 through the end of 2013. And for January 31, 2012 through June 11, 2013, when the Washington Examiner was both online and a printed daily newspaper distributed around the Washington, DC area.)

Check Bedard’s “Washington Secrets” blog for the latest choice and his other Washington insider posts. Each week, this page will be updated with Bedard’s latest example of the worst bias of the week.

(For more of the worst liberal media bias, browse the MRC's Notable Quotables with an every other week compilation of the latest outrageous, sometimes humorous, quotes in the liberal media.)

 

■ June 29, 2015: Mainstream Scream: Redskins, like Confederate flag, are evil, says Olbermann

(Washington Examiner post)

This week's Mainstream Media Scream features ESPN's Keith Olbermann, formerly of MSNBC, equating the Washington Redskins football team with the "same kind of genocide, the same kind of persecution and mockery" as the Confederate flag represents.

Last Wednesday, he barked:

    “We see that a symbol like a flag cannot only invoke and encourage racism, and violence, and madness, and murder, and treason, but that it can do something even worse. It can represent evil, and represent genocide, and the persecution, and mockery of a group of people because of the color of their skin.

    “And if a flag can do that, a football team name, beamed into our homes every day, our headphones, our minds everyday, it can represent the same kind of evil, the same kind of genocide, the same kind of persecution and mockery of a group of people because of the color of their skin.”

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick: "Success at getting the public to turn against the Confederate flag has, as illustrated so perfectly by Olbermann, inspired liberals to go after more of their pet peeves – free speech be damned. And in what universe has an NFL team's name ever represented 'the same kind of evil' and 'genocide' which has inspired some to commit terrible acts?"

Rating: Three out of five screams.

 

■ June 22: Mainstream Scream: Dan Rather blames Ronald Reagan for GOP’s right turn

(Washington Examiner post)

This week's Mainstream Media Scream features an old favorite, former CBS anchorman Dan Rather, who said that the Republican Party's "strong turn to the right" is the fallout from the Reagan years.

He was on "CNN Tonight" Wednesday when he said the following when sizing up the huge and politically diverse Republican presidential field:

"We never had this many candidates in the race when I say this early, but I would say there's a relationship between the 2016 presidential campaign and what happened in the 1970s during the Watergate period in this sense. What happened in the mid 1970s resulted, eventually, in the Republican Party taking a strong turn to the right with the two-term presidency of Ronald Reagan and the Republican Party is still struggling, on the one hand, with the success of the Reagan presidencies, which by the way, I would argue, the presidency of George H.W. Bush was the third Reagan term.

"So, in effect, you had three Reagan terms. After the Republican Party took this strong turn to the right coming out of the 1970s and the party is still struggling with that, which is one of the reasons that they have, what, 16 candidates and counting in the race for the primary at the beginning."

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick: "What? Dan Rather isn't any better at political analysis than in document authentication. So, by his reasoning, if a more moderate Republican had beaten Jimmy Carter in 1980, in 2015 the party would be unified with fewer presidential candidates?"

Rating: Three out of five screams.

 

■ June 15: Mainstream Scream: Reporter says Obama saved ‘my finances and my life’

(Washington Examiner post)

This week's Mainstream Media Scream features Extra TV's Jerry Penacoli, a cancer survivor who credits Obama for banning the lifetime coverage limit.

"You pretty much saved my finances and my life," he told Obama during a Rose Garden taping June 11 edition of the syndicated entertainment and pop news show.

Penacoli: "Today, my chance to thank the president for the Affordable Care Act."

To Obama: "You pretty much saved my finances and my life."

Obama: "One of the goals for the Affordable Care Act was not just to help people get insurance who didn't have it, it was to give better protections for people who already had insurance."

Penacoli: "I think a lot of people don't understand that."

Obama: "And you were a perfect example of somebody who could be caught with debilitating bills or not being able to get the care you need."

Penacoli: "This has nothing, for me, to do with politics. I'm just letting you know —"

Obama: "That it made a difference in your life."

Penacoli: "That it made a difference in my life."

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick: "Was Penacoli auditioning for a new show on MSNBC? He set a new sycophantic standard. It's gratifying that he's beaten cancer, but that's no excuse for using how it benefited him personally to hail a very controversial policy which has also hurt many who lost their insurance."

Rating: Five out of five screams.

 

■ June 8: Study: Big 3 news networks turn to police shootings to boost ratings

(Washington Examiner post)

Long a staple on local TV news, the Big Three networks are now turning to crime for ratings, and for a second month made police misconduct the top story, even more than the killer floods in Texas, ISIS beheadings and the 2016 presidential race.

A new study from the Media Research Center found that the ABC, CBS, NBC devoted 108 minutes to the police story, making the overwhelming coverage our pick for the Mainstream Media Scream of the week.

"Nearly all of that network airtime was devoted to just three instances of alleged misconduct (in Baltimore, Cleveland and Madison, Wisconson), plus general discussion of the topic. In contrast, all of the other murders committed in the U.S. in May garnered less than half as much time (50 minutes and 48 seconds)," said the MRC report from analyst Mike Ciandella.

The May numbers weren't much different than those in April, when the police conduct story got six times the coverage that stories about ISIS got.

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick: "A fine example of how the news media advance the agenda of the left. The left want to make police misdeeds a national focus and journalists eagerly make it so at the expense of other worthy topics."

Rating: Four out of five screams.

 

■ June 1: Mainstream Media Scream: SNL’s fake Hillary: ‘I’m rooting for her!’

(Washington Examiner post)

This week's Mainstream Media Scream features Kate McKinnon, the "Saturday Night Live" comic who plays Hillary Rodham Clinton, cheering the Democrat on.

In a Hollywood Reporter interview, she called Clinton "so resplendent," a far cry from how Tina Fey approached her SNL role of Sarah Palin.

In the interview, reporter Michael O'Connell asked, "You have a huge platform in the next year and a half being the Hillary Clinton on SNL. How are you going to approach that? Do you feel pressure?"

She answered, "I do feel pressure. I'm rooting for her, obviously. It's a combination of the writers' take on her but also this contrast between a woman so driven and hardened by her experiences — She needs this! The country needs this! — and this sweetie granny from the Midwest. The juxtaposition."

She added: "I'd be so nervous to meet her. I find her so resplendent!"

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick: "Not what Tina Fey thought of Sarah Palin as she turned the conservative Republican into an object of national ridicule. It's another example of the advantages given to liberal Democrats. Even those making fun of you won't go too far since they really are, literally, 'rooting' for you to win."

Rating: Four out of five screams.

 

■ May 26: Matthews compares Hillary Clinton to FDR

(Washington Examiner post)

This week's Mainstream Media Scream features MSNBC's Chris Matthews, who on his show "Hardball" seemed to compare Hillary Rodham Clinton to Franklin D. Roosevelt, "probably the best president we ever had."

From Thursday night's show:

"I think that [Bloomberg TV] focus group is fascinating. Because, it seems to me there is something -- Franklin Roosevelt, probably the best president we ever had, certainly in the 20th century, was very secretive and manipulative. And we still thought he was a good president. So if Hillary Clinton is secretive, we know that, is that going to help us get any further here?"

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick: "Leave it to Chris Matthews to compare Hillary Clinton to FDR. Only he could see greatness in secretive and manipulative politicians. Quite the standard for a supposed journalist."

Rating: Three out of five screams.

 

■ May 20: Mainstream Scream: OMG, Obama is tweeting, squeals CNN

(Washington Examiner post)

The media loves nothing like a good tweet and when the president sends one out, that has everyone in, well, a twitter.

This week's Mainstream Media Scream goes to CNN for gushing over President Obama's first tweet. On Tuesday's New Day show they giggled "that's cute" when discussing the tweet.

MICHAELA PEREIRA: The President has finally joined Twitter – using the handle @POTUS. Before, he used @BarackObama; and then, would put 'B.O.,' if he was tweeting. Otherwise, his staff handled it. The president says this @POTUS handle is a new way to engage directly with the American people. Want to see his initial Tweet?

'Hello, Twitter! It's Barack. Really! Six years in, they're finally giving me my own account.' Well, that led former President Clinton to Tweet, 'Welcome to Twitter, @POTUS! One question: does that username stay with the office? #askingforafriend.'

ALISYN CAMEROTA: That's cute!

PEREIRA: Not to be outdone, President Obama responded to Clinton – saying, 'Good question. The handle comes with the house. Know anyone interested in @FLOTUS?' – aka, the first lady? (laughs)

CAMEROTA: Oh my gosh!

PEREIRA: It is hilarity! Very good point – if Hillary Clinton were to become @POTUS, does he have to be @MLOTUS?

CAMEROTA: (laughs) Wow! I don't know!

PEREIRA: Right? There's a lot of Twitter conversations to be had here.

CAMEROTA: But I mean, I just like that – are those two just going to talk to each other on Twitter like that, and we all get to eavesdrop? I kind of like that – that two presidents get to just chat-

PEREIRA: Yeah – and maybe some of the others will join in.

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick: "When it comes to Barack Obama, it takes so little to impress the journalists on CNN. Throw in Bill Clinton and anticipation of a Hillary presidency, and you have CNN at its silliest."

Rating: Two out of five screams.

 

■ May 11: Mainstream Scream: Fiorina’s H-P record divides pundits

(Washington Examiner post)

Former Hewlett-Packard boss and GOP presidential candidate Carly Fiorina's management, and eventual firing, from tech giant Hewlett-Packard is fast becoming a dividing line between Republicans and Democrats over jobs and candidates with corporate backgrounds.

On Sunday's "Meet the Press," it was former Republican Party Chairman Michael Steele taking her side with Washington Post Ruth Marcus on the attack.

Michael Steele: The way she [Fiorina] pushed back on your questions about her tenure and getting fired, I thought that sounded reasonable. And as a voter looking at that, I thought oh, okay that sounded reasonable, at least she didn't run from it. She didn't hide.

Ruth Marcus: I entirely, completely disagree. I don't think we would be taking her seriously at all if she weren't a woman. And I would love to see a woman president.

Kathleen Parker: Well, can you say the same thing about Hillary?

Steele: Thank you.

Marcus: No, no, no. Let me just finish. I think she is a failed business leader and a failed political candidate.

Parker: No, she is not a failed business leader.

Steele: What are you talking about?

Marcus: As Chuck [Todd] pointed out, she was fired from her job. She didn't get the political job she ran for. I just don't get why we should be taking her so seriously.

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick: "It's sure nice that eight years after Barack Obama ran, Marcus has discovered an interest in experience and accomplishments in those making a presidential bid. Of course, if losing a race for office is a disqualifier, then isn't Hillary Clinton disqualified since she lost the 2008 Democratic primary?"

Rating: Three out of five screams.

 

■ May 4: Mainstream Scream: Soledad O’Brien says ‘thug’ a ‘proxy’ for ‘N-word’

(Washington Examiner post)

Former CNN anchor Soledad O'Brien, now CEO of Starfish Media Group and a correspondent for Al Jazeera America, is our Mainstream Media Scream for taking up Baltimore City Councilman Carl Stokes' charge that "thug," like the reference to looters by the city's mayor, is code for the N-word.

Discussing the issue on Sunday's "Reliable Sources," she said:

"Listen, I think what the Baltimore city councilman, Carl Stokes, was trying to tell Erin Burnett is that thug is a proxy, it is a word we use instead of the N-word. And I think that's really true. I can't think of a situation where there's ever been a headline or someone has called a white young person who's in the middle of a violent protest, demonstration, whatever, a 'thug.' We use it all the time when we're talking about people in the inner city."

Brent Baker, vice president of research at the Media Research Center, explains our pick: "So much for calls for open and honest dialogue about crime and race. Journalists like O'Brien, and she's not the only one, want to disallow accurate words from being used to describe criminals, thus limiting the discussion by suggesting anyone who using the term 'thug' is a racist."

Rating: Four out of five screams.

 

■ April 27: Mainstream Media Scream: Stephanopoulos goes to bat for former boss Clinton

(Washington Examiner post)

The hostility by some in the mainstream media to Clinton Cash author Peter Schweizer has been noteworthy.

One series of questions from ABC's This Week host and former Clinton White House communicator George Stephanopoulos reached that level Sunday, making him our choice for this week's Mainstream Media Scream.

As he interviewed Schweizer, author of Clinton Cash: The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich, questioning his findings repeatedly as this six-part video shows:

But you take it pretty far. You take it far and write the pattern is troubling enough to warrant further investigation by law enforcement officers. Do you have any evidence that a crime may have been committed?

...

As you know, the Clinton campaign says you haven't produced a shred of evidence that there was any official action as secretary that supported the interest of donors. We've done investigative work here at ABC News, found no proof of any kind of direct action. And an independent government ethics expert, Bill Allison at the Sunlight Foundation, wrote this. He said: 'There's no smoking gun. No evidence that the changed policy based on donations to the foundation.' 'No smoking gun.' Is there a smoking gun?

...

Beyond that, this deal was approved by a board of the government called the [Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States] board that is actually chaired by the secretary of treasury, not the secretary of state. Eight other agencies on board, the secretary of State, Homeland Security, Defense, Commerce, Energy, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission signed off on it. And even though the State Department was one of nine agencies to sign off on it, there's no evidence at all that Hillary Clinton got directly involved in this decision.

...

But, wait a second. There were nine different agencies that approved it. Doesn't that suggest that that was because there was no national security concern, not because of some nefarious influence on Hillary Clinton?

...

But the assistant secretary of state who sat on the committee said she never intervened on any CFIUS issue at all.

As you know, the Democrats have said this is indication of your partisan interest. They say you used to work for President Bush as a speechwriter. You are funded by the Koch brothers. How do you respond to that?

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick: "It sure must be nice to be a liberal when your bad behavior is exposed. Since it's so easy for your aides to move into jobs in the mainstream news media, they can serve as your advocates and use their journalistic platform to discredit your critics — a piece of ammunition your opponents to the right will never have."

Rating: Five out of five screams.

 

■ April 20: Mainstream Media Scream: Bill Maher says Rubio ‘could be Hillary's pool boy’

(Washington Examiner post)

It's hard to get more hypocritical for center-left commentators than what HBO's Bill Maher said about Republican Sen. Marco Rubio's presidential bid, making the liberal our pick for the Mainstream Media Scream of the week.

It came on his show, Real Time with Bill Maher, on Friday night:

"Another week another candidate. This week: Everybody ready for Marco Rubio of Florida? Oh, my gosh. Yeah, they're all saying he's fresh, he's new. I'll say. He looks like he could be Hillary Clinton's pool boy, this guy."

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick: "Imagine the reaction if a conservative made such a stereotypical, derogatory and racially-tinged joke about a liberal Democrat who is Hispanic. Saying it was just a joke would not allay the outrage. It sure is nice to be a liberal so you're able to get away with such things."

Rating: Five out of five screams.

■ April 13: Mainstream Media Scream: Mika Brzezinski cheers Clinton, Warren

(Washington Examiner post)

This week's mainstream media scream features MSNBC Morning Joe co-host Mika Brzezinski cheering on Democrats Hillary Clinton and Sen. Elizabeth Warren.

On Monday's show, Brzezinski excitedly held up a Warren T-shirt, a gift from regular guest Steve Rattner who bought it on http://elizabethwarren.com/

She promised: "I'm wearing that running."

Brzezinski also hailed Clinton: "I think it will be really interesting to watch what she does with the tremendous platform that she has. I hope she takes it to new heights and really does something with it instead of plays it safe."

And at the end of the show, in the "What Have We Learned Today?" sign-off: "I learned that Hillary Clinton is on the road and ready to sell a message and I can't wait to hear it."

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick: "Brzezinski defines 'in the tank.' In the interest of transparency, she should alternate each day wearing the Warren T-shirt and one promoting Hillary Clinton for president. Then again, a good portion of the national press corps should do that."

Rating: Four out of five screams.

 

■ April 6: Mainstream Media Scream: Newsweek scribe’s sex-slam over Indiana religion law

(Washington Examiner post)

This week's mainstream media scream features one of the more sexually-tinged attacks on Indiana Gov. Mike Pence for signing the controversial "Religious Freedom Law" and the potential 2016 Republican presidential candidates who supported him.

It comes from Newsweek national political correspondent Nina Burleigh, formerly a Time magazine reporter, on MSNBC's "The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell," April 1:

"Well, what I find astonishing about it is the way the presidential candidates jumped onto the Pence side immediately: Jindal, Carson, Cruz, and Bush, the front-runner. It was like a premature intolerance ejaculation and, you know, there are pills for that at Walmart and you can get them over the counter and you don't have to have a prescription."

Burleigh made headlines years ago when she wrote about being flattered when Bill Clinton stared at her legs, even telling the Washington Post, "I would be happy to give him a blowjob just to thank him for keeping abortion legal. I think American women should be lining up with their presidential kneepads on to show their gratitude for keeping the theocracy off our backs."

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick: "Burleigh processes politics through sexual imagery: Offering years ago to perform oral sex on Bill Clinton to thank him for keeping abortion legal and delivering an insult about male sexual function to show her disdain for a view with which she disagrees. Nothing premature about her own intolerance."

Rating: Four out of five screams.

 

■ March 30: Mainstream Media Scream: Alter sums up Cruz as ‘Extremism is good’

(Washington Examiner post)

This week's mainstream media scream is just one of the many liberal reactions to Sen. Ted Cruz's speech announcing his presidential bid at Christian conservative Liberty University.

It comes from MSNBC's Jonathan Alter who boiled down the Texan's message into three words: "Extremism is good."

He appeared on MSNBC's "The Rundown with Jose Diaz-Balart" following Cruz's announcement speech:

"This was a really strange combination of John Lennon and Barry Goldwater. 'Imagine all the people.'

"But the real question is: Is this 1964, when the Republican Party decided it would go with its most extreme candidate? Remember, Barry Goldwater said that year 'extremism in defense of liberty is no vice.' So, that's the Ted Cruz message, 'Extremism is good. Red meat is good.' He pushes all the buttons he can. Abolish the IRS. Not reform the IRS, abolish it. This is radical political material. And we'll see how it plays. I wouldn't assume that it doesn't."

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick: "It's a pretty good bet that if Elizabeth Warren jumps in, 'journalists' like Alter won't immediately try to discredit her with flawed historic 'extremism' comparisons. Cruz is only 'extreme' to those who are extreme to the left, but lack self awareness."

Rating: Three out of five screams.

 

■ March 23: Mainstream Media Scream: ‘He’s slimy,’ Donny Deutsch says of Ted Cruz

(Washington Examiner post)

Sen. Ted Cruz really seems to bring out the worst in liberals, especially in the media. This week's Mainstream Media Scream features MSNBC Morning Joe regular Donny Deutsch smearing Cruz as "slimy" and "scary."

On Monday's show, in advance of Cruz's official announcement getting into the 2016 race, he said:

"I've stated earlier that he's completely unelectable, obviously an interesting character and he'll have a place at the table. But, unelectable for a host of reasons. When I look at him, basically, he's accomplished nothing. He is involved, I think, in two bills and he had a vote in the Senate last Saturday that had 22 votes. He's an obstructionist. He brings no new ideas to the table, other than 'no,' and I think this country is tired of that, and am I missing something? Because I think he's just a piece of theater and nothing more."

And after calling him "ignorant" on climate change, Deutsch added: "I think he's scary. I think he's dangerous. I think he's slimy. I think he brings no fresh new ideas."

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick: "Eight years ago national media figures fawned over a senator in office for just over two years who inspired legions of liberals. What a difference ideology makes. A hero to many conservatives, to Deutsch and his media colleagues, Cruz is a threat they must defeat."

Rating: Five out of five screams.

 

■ March 16: Media Scream: Bob Schieffer mocks Sen. Tom Cotton’s Iran move

(Washington Examiner post)

This week’s Mainstream Media Scream features CBS Face the Nation host Bob Schieffer’s interview with Iran letter writer Sen. Tom Cotton and his slap at the Arkansas lawmaker’s direct outreach to Iran during the Washington-Tehran nuclear talks.

Schieffer to Cotton on Sunday’s Face the Nation: “Are you planning to contact any other of our other adversaries around the country? For example, are you planning to check with the North Koreans to make sure they know that any deal has to be approved by the Congress?”

Plus, “I just want to make sure, do you feel that you have not weakened the president’s hand here and do you have any regrets about the way you went about this?”

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick: “How condescending. Would Schieffer ever treat a rising liberal political star which such contempt? Schieffer thinks the letter was a bad idea and didn’t even try to avoid inserting his personal view into the interview, but he didn’t need to mock Cotton.”

Rating: Three out of five screams.

 

■ March 9: Mainstream Scream: Chris Matthews says Hillary email not worth the fuss

(Washington Examiner post)

This week’s Mainstream Media Scream features MSNBC Hardball host Chris Matthews dismissing the email affair that threatens to stall Hillary Rodham Clinton's march to the presidency.

Addressing the issue and uproar, mostly from the right, over her use of a private email system and not the .gov required address, Matthews seemed to shrug off the affair when interviewing former Obama aide David Axelrod.

MSNBC's Hardball, March 3:

“I don’t know this formal custom, how often it's honored, how often it's not? It’s almost like, ‘Don’t take your pens home and use them at home.’ I wonder if it's one of those rules. David Axelrod, you’ve got experience with this. What did — do you think this is something worth the top of the fold of the New York Times? Hillary Clinton didn’t use their email instead of her government [sic] email. Is this worthy of this kind of hootin’ and hollerin'?”

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick: “Imagine how Matthews would have reacted if it was discovered Dick Cheney used a secret email account to conduct government business? He would have exploded with indignation and criticized the New York Times if it wasn’t plastered atop the front page.”

Rating: Four out of five screams.

 

■ March 2: Mainstream Scream: ABC slams GOP senator’s snowball toss at climate change

(Washington Examiner post)

This week's Mainstream Media Scream features more claims that climate change and global warming are man's fault and that any questioning of it is crazy talk.

On Friday's Good Morning America on ABC, the target this time was long-serving Oklahoma Sen. Jim Inhofe who went to the Senate floor with a snowball to cast doubt on global warming.

ABC's Amy Robach: And a bizarre scene in Washington. One senator used the recent snow to bolster his argument about climate change. Republican James Inhofe highlighted a government report that found last year was the warmest on record. Then, he used a prop to demonstrate how cold it's been lately.

Sen. James Inhofe: It's a snowball, just from outside here. So, it's very, very cold out, very unseasonable. So, here, Mr. President, catch this.

Robach: Inhofe acknowledges the Earth's climate is changing but doesn't believe humans are to blame.

Inhofe was also blasted by the Washington Post which condemned his "ascientific thinking."

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick: "Inhofe's snowball toss was no sillier than the many mainstream media figures who, whenever there's a big snowstorm or hurricane or tropical storm or drought or heat wave or cold snap — just about any weather event — cite it as proof of 'climate change.' And then, as herewith Robach, deride those who cite the weather to cast doubt on global warming."

Rating: Three out of five screams.

 

February 23: Mainstream Scream: Chris Matthews calls on Rudy Giuliani to apologize

(Washington Examiner post)

This week’s Mainstream Media Scream features a regular, MSNBC’s “Hardball” host Chris Matthews getting in on the left’s rant about former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani’s charge that President Obama doesn’t love America.

It came at the end of his Thursday show.

“Let me finish tonight with this tough, unnecessary and wrong attack by Rudy Giuliani on our president. All of us have different temperaments. Look, I can remember when Sen. Barack Obama was 20 points behind Sen. Hillary Clinton in the early run for president. I kept getting anxious and frustrated, and, OK, angry because he didn’t seem as angry, frustrated, and angry as I was by his position so far behind. Rudy Giuliani says that Obama doesn’t love his country, like he does, like others he knows do.

“Well, I can understand what I’m getting at, this coolness the president gives off. He’s not a hothead like Rudy or me sometimes. He just isn’t. I remember when he got hammered in that first debate with Mitt Romney. He didn’t know he was being humiliated. Didn’t he know he was letting that man’s sense of personal superiority beat him up on national television. That was another time when I went hot and Obama went cool.

“But like all the other times, Obama did what he had to do. He and his team defeated the undefeatable Hillary Clinton and her team. He came back to beat Mitt Romney twice in debates, clearing the way for his convincing re-election as president.

“So, I can see why a guy like Rudy would think Obama’s too cool for school. But Mr. Mayor, you should never, ever go after someone’s love of his country. It breaks the rules we live by. It divides us when we should be united. I urge you to take it back and quickly, because it really does no good at all, except score political points with those who hate.”

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick: “Matthews certainly knows about questioning the patriotism of those he sees as political enemies. In 2009, he sneered: ‘Does Rush Limbaugh hate this country?’ And in 2011, he questioned the patriotism of media mogul Rupert Murdoch, wondering if he was a ‘real American’ or had ‘become a citizen just like somebody marries somebody to get into the country because they want a job.’ ”

Rating: Four out of four screams.

 

February 16: Mainstream Scream: Worse news for NBC’s Williams as Michael Moore defends

(Washington Examiner post)

This week’s Mainstream Media Scream focus on the lefty media features newsmaker and documentary director Michael Moore defending NBC anchor Brian Williams by trashing former President George W. Bush’s handling of the war in Iraq.

It came in an obscenity-laced Feb.8 Facebook solid paragraph post, shown here.

“Let’s see... So George W. Bush is now an artist and a painter & roots for dear brother ‘Jeb in 2016;’ Dick Cheney now appears on many networks as a grumpy old man pundit; Condi Rice gets to be on the board that picks college football’s Final 4...but it’s Brian Williams who’s to be punished for Iraq? Are u effing kidding me? I mean, an entire country was demolished, trillions were wasted, thousands of our troops were killed & wounded, tens/hundreds of thousands of Iraqi civilians were killed, and now, FINALLY, someone is paying for Iraq war lies... and it’s Brian f---ing Williams????? Yes, there is much that can be said about all the network reporters in 2003 who were embedded (i.e., Pentagon-approved) with the troops and getting to ‘play war’ instead of asking the Bush administration the hard questions THAT DID NOT GET ASKED, and yes there is much to say about how all the networks have dumbed down the nightly news and made it unwatchable...BUT - to let the real liars who were responsible for the Iraq War roam free while instead going after Brian Williams for committing the crime of Faux Macho due to his claim of being on the wrong chopper, well, this just begs to be ridiculed and stopped. Sinners (that means you, too, Paper of Record of Judith Miller), put down your stones. Social media mob, put down your noose. Have the guts to go after the big cheese. Let Brian Williams get back to telling us about the next big storm that’s going to drop 3’ of snow on New York City and the exclusive report on the lost dog who made it home to help its handicap master. (Note: I don’t know Brian Williams personally, but I'll say this about him: in the post-9/11 years, he did the nightly news hour on MSNBC/CNBC, and he was one of the few people in TV news who would allow an opposition voice such as mine on the air. I remember thinking this is a man with integrity.)”

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick: “Moore is one very angry and bitter man who equates outcome with what the media did. Plenty in the media pushed back at the time against the Bush administration and Dick Cheney has long been an object of disgust within the D.C. press corps. Of course, nothing others supposedly failed to do excuses Williams for making up tall tales.”

Rating: Five out of five screams.

 

February 9: Mainstream Media Scream: NYT’s ‘conservative’ is ‘totally pro-Obama’

(Washington Examiner post)

This week’s Mainstream Media Scream of Big Media’s lefty tilt features David Brooks, the “conservative” on the New York Times editorial staff, cheering President Obama’s harsh words at the National Prayer Breakfast.

Appearing on Sunday’s NBC “Meet the Press,” he endorsed these words from Obama:

“Unless we get on our high horse and think this is unique to some other place, remember that during the Crusades and the Inquisition, people committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ. ... In our home country, slavery, and Jim Crow, all too often was justified in the name of Christ.”

"Meet the Press" host Chuck Todd asked his panel: “Is our political discourse, are we too immature to have this debate?”

Said Brooks, “Well, I’m pro-Obama. I’m totally pro-Obama on this. I think he said the right thing. Listen, it was a gospel of humility. What sorts of people need a little gospel of humility? People in Washington, pundits, religious believers, I happen to be all three of those things. And so we’re told to, we’re told to walk humbly in the path of the lord, the lord’s ways are mysterious and so you’re saying we’re prone to zealotry as Jon [Meacham] said we’re fallen. And so to underline that that’s useful in Washington today. That’s useful always.”

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick: " ‘I’m totally pro-Obama.’ And this is who the New York Times seriously purports to be its ‘conservative’ columnist? Maybe they could hire Ann Coulter to provide a liberal perspective. Obama’s timing is as if Winston Churchill responded to the Nazis by reminding the British of how their troops mistreated the natives in North America in the 1600s or put innocents on the rack in medieval times.”

Rating: Four out of five screams.

 

February 2: Mainstream Scream: Ashley Judd calls Hillary Clinton best since Jefferson, Washington

(Washington Examiner post)

This week’s example of the media’s lefty tilt features actress Ashley Judd and her declaration that Hillary Clinton is the “most overqualified candidate we've had since Thomas Jefferson or George Washington.”

Judd, who toyed with a Kentucky Senate bid, made her comments on Friday’s edition of Larry King Now, an Ora.TV show also carried on Hulu and broadcast on RT, the Russian TV channel. Her comments didn’t mention other qualified past candidates like George H.W. Bush or even Vice President Joe Biden.

ASHLEY JUDD: I mean, obviously, I love Hillary Rodham Clinton. ... And so, seeing her talk about early childhood vulnerability and brain development — man, that woman is stout! She is stout. So yes, I will be all-in when the time comes —

LARRY KING: You would endorse her. You would obviously endorse her.

JUDD: Of course, I would!

KING: Look at your enthusiasm, I mean — come on!

JUDD: And are there other qualified candidates? Absolutely. I think she might be the most overqualified candidate we’ve had since Thomas Jefferson or George Washington.

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick: “Hollywood in a nutshell. Awed beyond reason by Hillary Rodham Clinton and all things Hillary Rodham Clinton.”

Rating: Three out of five screams.

 

■ January 26: Mainstream Media Scream: Bryant Gumbel calls NRA ‘pigs’

(Washington Examiner post)

This week’s example of the media’s lefty tilt features Bryant Gumbel, host of HBO Sports Series “Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel,” cursing at the National Rifle Association.

In an interview with the Rolling Stone posted last week, Gumbel said, “There are a few things I hate more than the NRA. I mean truly. I think they’re pigs. I think they don’t care about human life. I think they are a curse upon the American landscape.”

The full question and answer:

    Rolling Stone: A story you personally took on last season, about the “Eat What You Kill” movement, would you have done that five, ten years ago?

    Gumbel: There are a few things I hate more than the NRA. I mean truly. I think they’re pigs. I think they don’t care about human life. I think they are a curse upon the American landscape. So we got that on the record. That said, I’m willing to separate that this story had nothing to do with that. It’s not a gun story. So I would like to think that I would have done it, but I don’t know. Obviously, that was my first experience around killing and guns and hunting.

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick: “Confirmation Gumbel has as much disdain for conservatives as conservatives have long had for him. Now we know just has much disgust he held for a top conservative group all those years he was pretending to be impartial on NBC News and CBS News.”

Rating: Five out of five screams.

 

■ January 19: Mainstream Media Scream: Michael Moore calls snipers ‘cowards’

(Washington Examiner post)

This week’s example of the media’s lefty tilt features media heavyweight Michael Moore and his painful slap at the subject of Clint Eastwood’s new Iraq War movie, “American Sniper.”

On Twitter and Facebook, he quoted his dad calling snipers “cowards” but made a point not to swipe Eastwood’s Oscar-nominated movie totally.

“My uncle killed by sniper in WW2. We were taught snipers were cowards. Will shoot u in the back. Snipers aren’t heroes. And invaders r worse,” he tweeted.

In another, he added, “But if you're on the roof of your home defending it from invaders who've come 7K miles, you are not a sniper, u are brave, u are a neighbor.”

And on Facebook, he praised the movie and actor Bradley Cooper, then added a reference to Martin Luther King Jr.:

“Most of us were taught the story of Jesse James and that the scoundrel wasn't James (who was a criminal who killed people) but rather the sniper who shot him in the back. I think most Americans don't think snipers are heroes. Hopefully not on this weekend when we remember that man in Memphis, Tennessee, who was killed by a sniper's bullet.”

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick for the week’s best Mainstream Media Scream: “The Left’s hatred of America in a tweet – a perfectly condensed example of how Moore and others so eagerly use freedom of speech to denigrate those who enable it. On a weekend when American Sniper became the highest-grossing movie ever in a January, Moore illustrated how out of touch he is with the values of most Americans.”

Rating: Five out of five screams.

 

■ January 12, 2015: Mainstream Media Scream: Jerry Falwell just like murdering jihadists

(Washington Examiner post)

This week’s example of the media’s lefty tilt features former Rolling Stone executive editor Eric Bates, now executive editor of First Look Media, on MSNBC’s Now with Alex Wagner on Wednesday, talking about the terrorist attack against a French satire magazine in which twelve were murdered:

“This isn’t just Islamic extremism. If you go back to the ’80s — during the Reagan administration — when Jerry Falwell sued Hustler magazine for portraying him having, I believe it was drunken incest with his mother in an outhouse — again, in a visual form — and won a $150,000 court case against Hustler for that. It was overturned by the Supreme Court, I think, eight-to-zero.

“So you know, religious fundamentalists of all stripes and of nationalities have this penchant to say, we want to be able tell you what you can and can’t portray.”

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick for the week’s best Mainstream Media Scream:

“Talk about apples and oranges. One religious believer felt insulted by a false story about himself and employed the judicial system to seek a financial remedy. The others went on a murder spree. So sad that too many journalists desire to see moral equivalence between peaceful Christian believers and Muslim jihadists.”

Rating: Five out of five screams.

 

■ January 5, 2015: Mainstream Media Scream: ABC reporter cheers Cuomo for president

(Washington Examiner post)

This week’s example of the media’s lefty tilt features ABC’s David Wright reminiscing about the late New York Gov. Mario Cuomo's toying with a presidential bid in 1992.

On Friday’s "Good Morning America," Wright sounded like he was endorsing Cuomo, who died last week.

“You know, I grew up here in New York state at a time when Mario Cuomo was governor and would have loved to have seen him run for president. He could be spellbinding,” said Wright.

Media Research Center Vice President of Research Brent Baker explains our pick for the week’s best Mainstream Media Scream:

“Mario Cuomo was the Barack Obama of the 1980s for the press corps, but he never fulfilled their dream by running for president. Yet, as Wright demonstrated, he still lives on in their imaginations of what could have been – a yearning they’ve never shown for a conservative.”

Rating: Four out of five screams.

 

>> “Mainstream Media Screams” for 2014, as posted on MRC.org <<

Brent Baker
Brent Baker
Brent Baker is the Steven P.J. Wood Senior Fellow and VP for Research and Publications at the Media Research Center