Mike Sargent

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It must have been a while since David Gergen dropped his resume in the hopper for Team Obama, so it’s no small surprise that it was about for him to turn on the rhetorical firehose and gush some love the White House’s way.

On the June 4 “Anderson Cooper 360,” Gergen was asked by the host to give his initial reaction to President Obama’s speech in Cairo. Gergen immediately mugged for the camera:

DAVID GERGEN, CNN SENIOR POLITICAL ANALYST: Anderson, there was no way he could quite reach the summit with this speech. He couldn't please everyone. We're hearing a lot of nitpicking on aspects of the speech.

But, overall, it was the most powerful and the most persuasive speech any American president has ever made to the Muslim populations around the world, perhaps back of his background.

Cooper, to his credit, was immediately incredulous:

On May 22 of 2009, the Liberty University College Democrats were widely reported to have been shut down by the school’s administration.  These reports came across a broad spectrum of media – a search of LexisNexis for the terms “College Democrats” and “Liberty University” from May 20 through today turns up 72 results.  Among these results are 35 newspaper articles (among them, the Washington Post and L.A. Times),13 newswires or press releases (including one from the Associated Press), and even two mentions on MSNBC, a 24-hour cable news network.  

Ratings aside, a local college club getting face time on a cable news network is quite a feat.

On June 4, 2009, FoxNews.com reported that a nascent Students for Concealed Carry on Campus (SCCC) was banned from administration approval at a community college in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania.

 According to LexisNexis, FoxNews.com is the only news entity to report on this so far.

According to the article:

In a video post dated June 2, 2009, Breitbart TV reporter Scott Baker reveals that – shocker – Whoopi Goldberg was lying about Glenn Beck’s lying. What’s more, Barbara Walters didn’t check her facts before the Baxter-esque duo ambushed Beck on his May 20 appearance on ABC’s “The View.”

The video – embedded at right – is quite long, but I’ve broken down below the information offered in it.

First up in Baker’s video is a recap of what was known before his investigation.  Beck rode the Amtrak Acela from Connecticut to Washington D.C., and along the way, encountered Walters and Goldberg.  The facts surrounding this encounter were hotly disputed in Beck’s appearance on “The View.”  As it turns out, Beck’s version of the facts were incredibly accurate.  For example, the main premise of the Viewettes’ accusations was that Walters called Beck over to their seats to speak with him – which Beck never claimed in the first place.

Baker follows with incredulity:

In what could be a new record for the Morning Joe crew, Joe Scarborough exploded into an anti-media rant today – a mere six minutes and forty-one seconds into the show.  From review of the tape, it is clear that Scarborough had not missed his morning coffee – so that was apparently not the reason for his detonation.  What, then, set Scarborough off?

This Scarborough eruption was brought to you by the past (and continuing) failure of the main-stream media to cover President Obama fairly.  In Mika Brzezinski’s morning news rundown, there was (what was supposed to be) a short segment on President Obama’s comments yesterday; regarding the latest in a series of auto-maker bailouts:

JOE SCARBOROUGH: How can he say that with a straight face? Seriously. This is one of the things that's troubling about this President is he can say things with a straight face that the media does not call him on.
After arguing the details of the President’s proposal at length (length for a TV show...), Brzezinski provided this gem:

The blogosphere has, once again, proven itself a worthy investigator.  Unsurprisingly, that same investigatory spirit is nearly nonexistent in the mainstream media.

This morning on Fox and Friends, Michelle Malkin gave an interview on a story that she and HotAir have been following for several days (video embedded to the right).  Apparently, many of the Chrysler dealers that have been chosen for closing have made a habit of donating money to Republicans, or nobody at all – and those who donate to Democrats are miraculously safe.

Why is it miraculous? 

Ann Coulter and James Carville went head-to-head on Good Morning America this morning.  Incredibly, James Carville survived.

At least, it sounds incredible until you read the transcript.  A total of nine questions were asked of the two pundits, seven of which went to Coulter.  Carville, on the other hand, was simply allowed to respond to Coulter without questioning - an unfiltered rebuttal, with free airtime provided by ABC.

This, however, was not the most egregious point of controversy.  Carville was allowed, with no challenge from the host, to provide ad-hominem attacks against conservatives – as well as irrelevant, non-sequitur praise for Judge Sonia Sotomayor.  The transcript speaks for itself:

Norah O'Donnell and Rachel Maddow can't seem to make up their minds. In the same segment, Maddow argues - and O'Donnell fails to question - that Judge Sonia Sotomayor was not picked as an affirmative-action nominee, and follows with the mystifying non-sequitur that opposing "the first Hispanic Supreme Court Justice" would be politically damaging for the Republican party.

O’Donnell was interviewing Rachel Maddow (normally exiled to the prime-time wing-nut section of MSNBC programming, Maddow instead made an appearance just after three PM on Tuesday), and immediately served up a steaming dish of Rush Limbaugh controversy.  In keeping with the liberal myth of Republican racism, Maddow immediately pounced:


 Glenn Beck was on “The View” today.  Predictably, the conservative talk-show host was attacked by Whoopi Goldberg, as a “lying sack of dog mess.” (Video embedded on the right.)

That, however, is not the only bias to come of this.  Huffington Post political reporter Jason Linkins throws out the red meat for the Web’s left-wing wolves, naturally ignoring the straw man fouling up the Viewettes’ argument.

About what was Beck accused of lying?  Beck, on a recent radio program, recounted a tale of meeting Goldberg and Barbara Walters on an Amtrak train bound for Washington D.C.  Finding seats was apparently difficult on that day (odd, for Amtrak), and upon finding a few open seats, Beck was told by an Amtrak official that those open seats were reserved.  A few minutes later, Beck says, Goldberg and Walters walked onto the train, and sat down in the reserved seats.

Once upon a time, the press was virtually obsessed with the “with us or against us” foreign policy stance of the Bush presidency.  Pundits swung from rhetorical chandeliers, screaming that such a dichotomous approach would alienate the rest of the world - that our “arrogance,” as they called it, would thin our list of allies dramatically.

But that doesn’t seem to apply to the media when the matter is domestic policy and the viewpoint is socially conservative.

MSNBC host Contessa Brewer posted on her Twitter feed this morning:

Here’s a shocking statement about the behavior of the White House Press Corps at the Correspondent’s Dinner: “What I saw the other night was like a bunch of teenage girls waiting for a Bay City Rollers concert, ready to scream at their the top of their lungs.”

The content of this statement is not nearly so shocking, however, as who said it – a member of the media, one Joe Scarborough of MSNBC.  That’s right, a member of the media is actually talking about media bias.  And even more bewildering, he wasn’t the only one.  Mika Brzezinski, co-host of MSNBC’s “Morning Joe”, agreed:
BRZEZINSKI: I definitely agree with you, I saw that there, Joe, and even the people running the behind the scenes trying to figure out what shots to put on the air, were like, ooh look at Michelle Obama, she looks so good. Go to him, go to him! What? [...] They were in love.  It was weird.
A BBC America guest, Katty Kay, also concurred:

For your TGIF viewing fun, NBC “Today” show co-host Meredith Vieira has lost control of her verbal filters again.

Rush Limbaugh has no problem following black conservatives. But you’d never know it, were you to read the Black Entertainment Television website.

Posted by the amorphous BET.com Staff, the following kneecapping was posted today:

Rush Limbaugh has a problem with leading Black Republicans. In recent weeks, he’s blasted his own party’s chairman, calling Michael Steele “gutless” and too weak to challenge President Obama. And now, the acid-tongued shock jock is hurling barbs at perhaps the most respected Black Republican in America, telling his estimated 20 million listeners to his radio show that former Secretary of State Colin Powell is really a Democrat in a GOP costume.

First of all, Rush Limbaugh, while generally seen as a Republican, is first and foremost a conservative. For Limbaugh, the party is simply an instrument to implement a philosophy - understanding this about conservatives would cause partisans everywhere to understand Limbaugh’s politics much better.

But the inability to understand the difference is not the only problem with this BET article.

Cancer is a terrible disease.  It is a slow, painful way to die, and the best of modern medicine can only sometimes beat back its advances.  Also notable: Cancer is a nonpartisan disease, attacking the Jack Kemps and Ted Kennedys of the world with equal impunity.  Only a true cynic could see cancer as a political fundraising opportunity.

Enter the appropriately named Senator Arlen Specter, stage left. The media-beloved Specter has been the subject of much discussion recently, following his decision to switch his party affiliation to Democrat. Some in the mainstream media have painted Specter as a consummate moderate, while others have seen in his party switch the death-knell for the Republican party’s electoral aspirations in the Northeast.  

As a guest on Sunday’s “Face The Nation”,  Specter plugged a Web site, under the guise of medical research funding [h/t Michelle Malkin]:

What should President Obama’s impending Supreme Court Justice be?  A thoughtful jurist?  A legal scholar with impeccable credentials?  An experienced, accomplished, wise legal expert to judge whether laws are Constitutional?

Apparently, the most important thing to remember is that this justice should be a Hispanic woman.

Joe Scarborough of MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” was conducting pundit interviews this morning for analysis on Justice Souter’s newly announced retirement.  One such pundit was Tavis Smiley, and as a gentle segue into the subject of identity politics, Scarborough brought up Justice Clarence Thomas [emphasis mine]:

Nothing in American politics is quite so intriguing as the Central Intelligence Agency. There is a certain mystique surrounding this agency, almost wholly because it has proven to be quite good at keeping secrets.

Thus, whenever the actions of the CIA are widely reported in the media, the story typically becomes a fixation for many news outlets - and any former agent who is able to shed light on these actions are usually well-received. But even here, the media has limits.

Take Michael Scheuer, for example. He began as an outspoken critic of President Clinton’s leadership during the CIA’s hunt for Osama bin Laden. Later, Scheuer became a very vocal critic of the Iraq war, and of President Bush’s foreign policy also broadcast throughout the mainstream media. For a media that claim to love bipartisanship, one might think that Scheuer would be on the verge of permanent punditry.

But while Scheuer is an equal-opportunity critic of missteps by Democratic and Republican administrations, the broadcast news media seem to draw the line at allowing him on air to find fault with President Obama.

Scheuer wrote a column in Sunday’s Washington Post, daring to claim that the president’s actions in publishing the so-called CIA torture memos were morally reprehensible:

Daniel Andreas San Diego | FBI.gov photos | NewsBusters.orgRemember when NewsBusters told you about CNN ignoring a report on left-wing extremism?  Perhaps you have heard a reference to Timothy McVeigh recently, as an example of right-wing extremism?  Well, as it turns out, McVeigh isn’t the only extremist to bomb a building.

Please welcome Daniel Andreas San Diego (shown at right in photos via FBI.gov) to the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Most Wanted Terrorists list – notably, the only domestic terrorist on that list.  San Diego is wanted by the FBI for “his alleged involvement in the bombing of two office buildings in the San Francisco, California, area.”  Apparently, San Diego is suspected of being involved with two explosions at the Chiron Corporation in Emeryville – a corporation which the FBI says has had business ties to Huntingdon Life Sciences.  If you’ve read the report on left-wing extremism, that company is a top priority for left-wing extremists.

But the fun doesn’t stop there.

How much damage have these groups caused?  According to the FBI’s press release:

Here’s a quick informal poll:  Who has heard news of Russia’s recent troop buildup in the South Ossetia region of Georgia?


Most of our readers would immediately think of the Russian invasion of that region last summer, during the presidential contest, but the Russians are arguably saber rattling again with a fresh buildup of boots on-the-ground ahead of planned NATO exercises.


Last August, the media coverage immediately took the angle of breathless anticipation on how each presidential candidate would react to such a situation.  John McCain’s position was easily established from his record over many years in the Senate.  Then-Senator Obama’s position was much more difficult to ascertain – but the media gave him ample time to figure it out, helping the candidate defer those questions to the September 26 debate.  In fact, a good example of such activism was shown in the Washington Post’s Jim Hoagland, who in his August 31 op-ed insisted:


 Recycling the mid-1990s liberal smear campaign against grassroots conservatism, CNN has posted an article on the new DHS threat report complete with a Getty Images photo (shown at right) of neo-Nazi and white supremacist flags.

If the report were about Nazi extremists, that picture would be warranted. However, the DHS report warns against an amorphous “right-wing extremism,” failing to mention by name any particular threatening group or intelligence of any planned attacks.

The DHS report did cite returning war veterans as at-risk for recruitment by right-wing extremist groups. It seems strange to think that those men and women who risked their lives to protect this country and their government could be or become Nazis, but that seems to be the implication.

Moreover, one wonders where exactly the CNN report on the other extremism report was.

Well, Bubbles has blown it again.

Joe Scarborough noted near the beginning of this morning’s “Morning Joe” that Mika Brzezinski had, on the “Joe Scarborough” radio program, expressed sympathy for the now gloriously deceased Somali pirates. The in-office NewsBusters reaction was not much different than that of Willie Geist:
JOE SCARBOROUGH: I want to ask a question. Mika, on our radio show on Friday, said she felt sorry for the pirates. Do you really feel –

WILLIE GEIST: [incredulous] You did not say that?

SCARBOROUGH: [gleefully] Yes, she did.

GEIST: [despairing] You did not say that!
First, the good news: Willie Geist was not entirely wrong. Brzezinski did not say that – on Friday. The bad news? Scarborough was actually referring to an exchange from his Thursday April 9 radio program, incorrectly attributing it to Friday. This exchange is transcribed below, and can be heard here:

Katie Couric is on the warpath, so to speak.

In her "Evening News" interview with Attorney General Eric Holder last night, Couric pushed Holder several times to commit to heightened restrictions on access to firearms. This comes in light of her recent biased blog post on Couric and Co., which NewsBusters noted yesterday.

First, Couric pressed Holder on reinstating the assault weapons ban, noting that he expressed support for that during his confirmation hearings. Holder dodged the question like a champ: