Warner Todd Huston
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The entry previously posted at this address incorrectly asserted that the Capitol Hill switchboard was being used to promote liberal health insurance legislation. It is not being used for that purpose.
The telephone number referenced in this post originally is owned by a liberal lobbying organization, not the U.S. Capitol switchboard. We regret the error.
A recent CBS report by Scott Conroy and director of political coverage Steve Chaggaris is typical of the hyperbole to which the Old Media is prone when "reporting" (by that you can read dramatizing) Sarah Palin's political doings.
This report is not as chock full of it as some others that have utilized over-the-top phrases and rhetoric to beat down Palin, but there are a few here that ring typical of the sort of backdoor slams that the Old Media constantly over use in its Palin coverage.
A recent New York Post story brought up a point about the arrest of Harvard Professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr. that few in the Old Media have paid much attention to. Apparently, Gates has since the arrest announced he is in the early stages of involvement in a PBS TV series on civil rights in America. It is odd that this single fact has not been a focus of much discussion.
After all, if Gates is about to start a TV show about civil rights, what better way to punch up that participation than to "suddenly" get mixed up in a national civil rights "abuse" case? What better way to highlight America's civil rights problem than to become a nationally known victim of so-called racism?
Why is no one asking how long Gates has been in the planning stages of this TV show? Was he planning it since before the arrest? It all leads one to wonder if Gates saw an opportunity to gin up interest in his TV appearance by becoming a victim? Instead of experiencing any actual racial tension, did Gates invent his own ready-made, sensational incident to turn his scholarly civil rights discussion into the quintessential TV reality show extravaganza? Was all this just a TV stunt in Gates' mind? Was it mere opportunism?
In an "analysis" on how President Obama is dealing with the race issue, AP writer Charles Babington seems to have based his take on what happened to Harvard Professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr. on the assumption that Gates was arrested for being black in his home, not that he was arrested for disorderly conduct and for his outrageous disrespect for a police officer -- something to which other police officers involved attest, officers that are themselves minorities.
Babington so soft-pedals Obama's gaffe against the police officers, leaving out so many details that, after reading the story, one finds it difficult to understand why Obama's words were so controversial. And it's all in a seeming effort to cover for the president and try to help him reclaim the high ground on race in America. The whole Babington piece appears to be far more of an effort to smooth the waters for Obama instead of provide any actual analysis of the incident.
Calling Obama's reaction to the Gates arrest "understated" and "perhaps obvious," Babington goes on to say that Gates was arrested in his home -- without giving any context at all -- and assumes that even with Obama in the White House race is still a major problem in America.
Over at Media Bistro, we find an odd story that has it all: foul language, boorish behavior, sexual harassment, a male U.S. Navy officer, and a female journalist. Only the story isn’t what you might think it would be considering the ingredients. In this case it is the naval officer filing a complaint against the female reporter for sexual harassment.
Media Bistro has learned that US Navy Commander Jeffrey D. Gordon has filed a sexual harassment complaint against the Miami Herald's Carol Rosenberg with Gordon claiming that Rosenberg made comments about Gordon’s “sexual orientation,” repeatedly showered foul language upon him, and made comments of a sexual nature to him in the presence of others.
Once again Barack Obama waded into territory of which he has no knowledge: American history. Not only did he say during a TV interview that he doesn’t want “victory” in Afghanistan -- because victory is apparently too harsh for the losers -- but he used an example from WWII that never even happened to justify his touchy feely ideas on warfare. So will anyone in the Old Media even realize that the president’s historical example was a muff-up of real history? Will the Old Media make fun of him for his obvious lack of knowledge of our own history?
Let’s try a thought experiment, shall we? When I say “victory,” what do you think of? Do you think of winning the World Series? Do you picture that famous photo of the U.S. Sailor kissing the pretty girl in Time Square as WWII ended? Do you just imagine “winning” at whatever contest is at hand?
In the L.A. Times on July 22, writer Catherine Lyons again revealed a bit of her Bush Derangement Syndrome by calling the war on terror a “so-called war on terror.” What is with these people that simply cannot accept terms of reality? It’s like this every time they use the word terrorism, or “terrorism” as the Old Media so often terms it, and the war on terror. The Old Media simply refuses to understand that terrorism exists, that it is a problem, and that we are at war with terrorists.
This usage of the “so-called” remark was doubly amusing because Lyons threw in her “so-called war on terror” comment into a story about U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder’s visit to a closed meeting of Muslims held in Los Angeles on July 18. Her scoffing at the war on terror seemed geared to let Muslim readers in on the fact that she didn’t believe there was terrorism or that Bush was really fighting a war on terror… wink, wink.
On July 15, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton appeared before the Council on Foreign Relations, the much maligned organization often at the center of many global conspiracy theories.
We won’t talk about the merits of the CFR itself, here, but what made me curious is the treatment that MSNBC gave the Clinton speech. It appears that MSNBC edited out Clinton’s opening statement thanking the CFR for having her. When reading what she said at the outset of the speech one might become suspicious that MSNBC was trying to provide cover for the Secretary of State whose comments opened her up to the tongue wagging of conspiracy buffs.
**Video Below The Fold**
On an interview show called “Give and Take,” hosted by sometime TV pundit Julie Menin, CNN’s Campbell Brown patted herself and her network on the back for being “the only one that is still doing journalism” in cable land.
Menin asked Brown if she felt odd being a “political independent” in this world of cable pundits and lamented that journalism seems to be scant these days. Menin told Brown that at one time, “obviously journalists were independent.” Brown replied by assuming the truth of that “independence” and stated that she and CNN are the only ones “doing journalism” any more.
Menin’s odd assumption, though, that journalists are “political independents” is interesting because of the pervasive left-wing bias that is seen throughout the business. Does Menin think “independent” just means free of conservative ideology but otherwise free to be a liberal?
In How The Huffington Post Can Pay Its Bloggers, HuffPo blogger Michelle Haimoff seems to have gotten a tad miffed at how Arianna Huffington is making millions on the backs of her bloggers without “paying it forward,” as it were. Consequently, Haimoff has developed a prototype scheme on how Arianna can pay her long toiling bloggers to help fulfill her “responsibility” to journalism.
I think that Haimoff, however, misses the point of the Huffington Post. It isn’t now and never was about “journalism.” It’s about left-wing advocacy and advertising sales. Journalists need not apply. As we discussed early in July, journalism isn’t what HuffPo does.
I think this is an example of the distraction that the Internet and the New Media have driven the Old Media to, but it seems that the Ledger-Enquirer of Columbus, Georgia was so amazed that someone finally paid attention to its work that it had to write a whole story about itself to brag about how many webpage hits it got on a recent story by staffer Lily Gordon.
The L-E was all excited that it got "more than 1,000 comments" and received "712,251 page views" after Gordon's July 14 story headlined, "Soldier balks at deploying; says Obama isn’t president."
It looks like Time Magazine’s Karen Tumulty is getting scared that we could be losing the healthcare battle so she is urging Obama to “step in” and fix it all for us. Why, only the dulcet tones of The One could save us all from… wait, isn’t this whole thing his deal in the first place?
What is curious with this piece is the fact that Tumulty seems oblivious to the possibility that if healthcare is failing to win the day, that failure could be squarely laid at the president’s feet. After all, it is his campaign promise and his “highest priority” that we tackle healthcare. Yet Tumulty, while mildly scolding Obama for not being hands on enough, is all too willing to blame everyone but Obama for the floundering of the debate.
Here’s another one of those wonderful examples of how the Old Media will use a headline that makes a stark claim about how rotten Republicans are for opposing a Democratic plan while at the same time conveniently ignoring the opposition to the same idea among Democrats.
This time it is the “partisan divide” in the healthcare debate. The Times tsks Republicans for solidly lining up to oppose Obama’s wild grab for nearly 20 percent of the nation’s economy through his healthcare plans. Yet not once does the Times mention the many areas in which Democrats are disagreeing with Democrats on Obamacare. The Times makes it seem as if there is no dissent among Democrats and it is only those meanie Republicans holding up the wonderfulness of Obamacare.
You know when a liberal has lost any capability to understand the common American when they completely miss the pain that liberal tax hikers cause the average citizen in this country. Charlie Cook recently showed this elitist attitude in a National Journal column on the outrageous costs of the Cap and Trade bill – better called the Cap and Tax bill. Of course, to him, the tax hike on the average American is not a big deal and he doesn’t understand how anyone could be upset over it all.
Cook is perplexed why Washington pols were “getting an earful” from constituents over the energy tax hikes that the Cap and Trade bill will force on the nation. He just couldn’t figure why adding “only” an additional $175 a year to the average citizen’s electric bill was such a big deal.
**Video Below the Fold**
If you want to see how liberals in the media “do” their thing, nothing has been a better example than the analysis by CNN’s Jeffery Toobin. We’ve highlighted some on-air work of his Sotomayor coverage, but he also has a written piece on CNN.com that is a perfect example of how the left spins rhetoric to legitimize leftist precepts.
In his July 13 piece, for instance, Toobin calls Sotomayor a “cautious and careful liberal” like Ginsburg and Breyer. So, it makes one wonder, has Toobin ever called anyone on the right a “cautious and careful conservative”?
Over the last few weeks dozens of Iranians yearning for a more democratic government, striving to beat back the oppressive Mullahs, desperate to live free, have been killed in the streets of Iran during democratic protests. In China Uighurs and members of the religious sect Falun Gong are constantly attacked, imprisoned, tortured and killed for their ethnicity or beliefs by Chinese officials. Not long ago Buddhist Monks were killed by police for their protests in the streets of Myanmar. And on a nearly daily basis, members of the Taliban are killing villagers for not observing their oppressive rule in Afghanistan and Pakistan.
We live in times of violent protests tearing at some of the most oppressive governments in the world. And so, Australia's ABC fielded a report about one "violent" protest experienced by one of its own reporters. Was it murderous Islamists attacking villagers? How about Chinese thugs killing ethnics? Perhaps it was an Iranian Mullah ordered massacre of citizens wanting democracy that frightened her so much?
Uh, no. It was Orthodox Jews that spit on her.
Hey, grandma, hurry up and die so that Obamacare can pay for healthcare for more worthy, younger folks. That seems to be the message that The New York Times is selling in order to smooth the waters for the nationalized healthcare system that president Obama is trying to peddle to us all.
The Times is running a series titled "Months to Live" in order to help spread the sort of end of life issues that are helpful to Obama's healthcare agenda, one of which seems to be the idea that elderly should forgo any sort of heroic measures to keep them alive so as not to waste those resources that might be able to go to younger, more vital patients.
Have you ever met someone that just can't stop talking about a particular topic or person regardless of the subject of conversation? Folks like that slip their obsession into every conversation until people just don't even want to start up a conversation with them any more. And when an unsuspecting person starts talking with such a person, everyone in the know around them just roll their eyes and avoid eye contact. It is beginning to get like this when reading anything in the Old Media these days because it seems that regardless of the topic under discussion, start struck love for Obama is slipped into the piece somehow.
Detroit News columnist Marney Rich Keenan gives us a perfect example of this in hers headlined, "Whatever happened to simple phone etiquette?" It's supposed to be a piece lamenting the loss of the formal way of answering a telephone and really has nothing to do with politics. Keenan waxes nostalgic for that formal way of talking to folks and seems to say this loss is a cultural coarsening that is something to mourn... except when Obama does it, of course. Yes, when The One does it, why it's cool and hip and makes her "go weak in the knees."
In this report we get a nice one-two punch. Not only are we seeing Democrats once again refusing even a tiny compromise with Republicans on Obama's takeover of nearly 20% of our economy with his healthcare plans, but we also get to see another example of why Huffington Post is not journalism. I like a nice one-two punch for a Wednesday.
For one thing, the HuffPo article hilariously calls Democrat pitbull Rahm Emanuel a “conservative Democrat.” But let's start with the more important political point and deal with the HuffPo chicanery second.