John Armor

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There are two absolutely extraordinary aspects of this story. One is that Bill Clinton, a former President of the United States, offered the “good German” defense of the murderers, torturers, and rapists who worked for Saddam Hussein, and he did so on foreign soil. Equally extraordinary, however, is the fact that only, and an on-line publication called Village Soup in Maine, bothered to report this comment. Here is the quote:

The Hill is a specialized publication, mostly for Members of Congress and those whose living depends on Congress. Still, an article in The Hill today (Wednesday) is typical of the media coverage of the Senate vote yesterday to require “reports” to Congress on the progress of the Iraq War.

The title is “Needed: An Exit Strategy from Iraq.” It is written by Rep. Jane Harman (D. Calif) and its lede includes these paragraphs.

The mainstream media seemed to have settled on the sobriquet of “youths” to describe the people who are in their 13th night of burning cars, buildings, and in one instance a handicapped woman, in cities across France. Of course, it is hard to get an exact demographic profile of rioters on the run; however, reports on those who have been arrested are that only 30% are under 21.

Today in Paris, the Union of French Islamic Organizations (UOIF) issued a fatwa, or religious decree, against the participation of Muslims in the 10 days of rioting and arson in France. Typical of the mainstream media coverage of this action, is this report from Reuters:

“One of France's largest Islamic groups issued a fatwa against rioting on Sunday after officials suggested Muslim militants could be partly to blame for violent protests scarring poor neighbourhoods around the country.

In yesterday’s (Saturday) Washington Post is a brief article in its Metro section, responding to well-attended press conference the previous day in front of the newspaper’s offices.

The press conference accused the Post of violating the privacy rights of certain individuals on the website This exchange, printed by the Post, explains the charge, and the newspaper’s response to it, so far:

In tomorrow’s (Friday) Washington Post is a front page article entitled “Youths in Rural U.S. are Drawn to Military.” The title is correct. The lede, however, is a single sentence that displays for all to see the bias of the Post against the war and against its volunteer military. It reads:

Thanks to the efforts of investigative reporters for WBAL in Baltimore, which has just broken the story, the former third-ranked official for the Democrat Party in Maryland has been outed as the original source for sexual slanders against Baltimore’s Democrat Mayor, Martin O’Malley, who is currently running for Governor.

This is a very curious press conference just conducted by Special Counsel Patrick Fitzgerald. With his machine-gun delivery, he repeatedly flopped back and forth between saying that the “outing” of Valerie Plame, wife of discredited Ambassador Joe Wilson was a “serious matter,” and saying that he “reached no conclusion” whether she had been outed, and if so, when and by whom.

Beginning in the Middle Ages, there was a widely popular puppet show called “Punch and Judy.” Most of its content and humor were based on two characters flailing away at each other with slap sticks. Today, we have a verbal equivalent of the same thing, occurring in the pages of the New York Times. These protagonists are Arthur (“Pinch”) Sulzberger Jr., boy-publisher of the Times, and Judith (“Judy”) Miller, one-time rising star writer for that paper.

Shortly, the 2,000th death of an American serviceman or woman will occur in Iraq. That will generate an orgy of coverage in the American press on how “deadly” the war is. Sidebars will suggest that citizens are becoming “increasingly doubtful” about the conduct of the war. This Newsbusters article denounces that coverage as dishonest, in advance.

The title is, of course, an ancient joke from the vaudeville circuit. It’s an appropriate way to praise, rather than attack, one particular article – and in the process to attack ten thousand others. Here is the lede from “Show Me the Risk!” by Deroy Murdock in NRO (National Review Online) on 19 October 2005:

The Associated Press led the way nationally in dishonest reporting on the riot in Toledo, Ohio, Saturday, Oct. 15.. Below is a screen capture of the false headline and subhead from the AP story, copied by ABC News:

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No, this is not about the Rev. Louis Farrakhan and his march in D.C. Instead, it’s about an article today (15 October) in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer entitled, “ 'Slave syndrome' may still affect black behavior.” The thesis of the professor appears in the early paragraphs:

“The troubling images of African Americans displaced by Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans' impoverished neighborhoods didn't startle researcher Joy DeGruy-Leary. ‘All Katrina did was reveal what was already there. I wasn't confused, wasn't surprised,’ she said....

For two days, all parts of the American press have been reporting a "constitutional compromise" which has "gained the support of a main Sunni political party." With this compromise, it is expected that upwards of half the Sunnis (a 20% minority in Iraq) will support its new Constitution, and it will be ratified in the vote on Saturday.

All well and good. But hasn't anyone in the press recalled certain adventures of James Madison? (He was in all the papers.) We in the United States have been through exactly the same process. But NO ONE in the American press has, so far, remembered and mentioned that fact.

There was a bitter fight between the Federalists and Anti-Federalists in Philadelphia in 1787, whether we would have a new Constitution. And if so, what would be the powers of the new federal government. When the Constitution was submitted to Congress for its review, and afterwards to the states for their ratification, that same fight spilled out to the state capitols.

The Washington Post has run an extended whitewash of dishonest conduct in Hillary Clinton’s 2000 campaign for the Senate from New York. The article, “House of Cards,” ran today, 8 October, 2005. The money quote, the one when Tom Sawyer really slaps the white paint on the fence, is in the 14th paragraph:

My favorite supporting character in the legendary strip, “Peanuts,” is Pigpen. His unique trait is raising a cloud of dirt everywhere, even on a clean, dry sidewalk. Pigpen came to mind when I saw the White House Press Corps’ question President Bush Wednesday on his nomination of Harriet Miers to the Supreme Court.

In an article October 1 by Kelly Brewington, the Baltimore Sun takes Former Education Secretary Bill Bennett to task for his unusual comment on his radio show this week. The article is focused mostly on the reactions to that comment.

The reporter writes, "Democrat leaders leapt on Bennett, a prominent Republican analyst, describing his statement as the latest in a long trail of public comments by white conservatives unfairly linking blacks to crime and sexuality."

Today (25 September) the NY Times ran an editorial, “The Hard Bigotry of No Expectations.” It excoriates the Bush Administration for two principal “failures,” the bad response to Hurricane Katrina and the defective Iraq Constitution. Instead, the Times demonstrated that its entire staff is incompetent.

Regarding Katrina, the Times opines, “Four years after 9/11, Katrina showed the world that performance standards for the Department of Homeland Security were so low that it was not required to create real plans to respond to real disasters.”

Today (22 September) the NY Times has a story from the Associated Press entitled “Afghan Count Reveals Kabul Indifference.” This article demonstrates that the AP and the Times are either mind readers, or are the original definition of the word "bigot."

The story recounts that turnout in Kabul in the midterm election just conducted was slightly over one-third of eligible voters. The writers and editors of this article then conclude:

Tomorrow (22 September) the Christian Science Monitor has a story by Alexandra Marks entitled “A louder drumbeat for independent Katrina probe.” The Monitor is one of the nation’s ten best papers. But the article entirely misses the point.

Senators Harry Reid and Hillary Clinton also missed the same point. The article features their pictures with a caption indicating their "calls" for such a "commission."

Why do we have a Congress. Let’s review.