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On Tuesday, the day of the election in California's 50th Congressional District to replace imprisoned Republican Randy “Duke” Cunningham, the CBS Evening News ran a story touting a potential Democratic takeover of the seat as reporter Jerry Bowen described the race “as a referendum on both the Republican Congress and the Republican President, whose popularity is sinking.” But after the Republican won, the newscast was silent about it Wednesday night. In fact, the morning after the vote, CBS Evening News anchor Bob Schieffer declared on The Early Show that despite the win by Republican Brian Bilbray over Democrat Francine Busby, the 49 to 45 percent victory is “a warning shot for Republicans.” Busby, however, got just one point more of the district's vote than did John Kerry in 2004.

Schieffer had set up CBS's Tuesday night story about the San Diego County race: "Democrats believe they have a chance to take back control of Congress from the Republicans this year, and they're looking to a special election tonight for a sign that they may be right.” Jerry Bowen trumpeted how “when disgraced Republican Congressman Duke Cunningham went off to prison for taking millions of dollars in bribes, no one predicted what just may happen today as voters in this 25-year-long Republican stronghold pick his replacement: That a Democrat, local school board member Francine Busby, could emerge the winner." (Transcripts follow)

At a time when left-wing Bush-haters regularly call the President a “liar” and a killer, ABC and NBC on Wednesday night pegged stories to the controversy over Ann Coulter’s criticism of the very political 9/11 widows, with NBC anchor Brian Williams adding a nice touch by harkening back to Joe McCarthy as he promised a look at “why some are now asking, 'Have you no shame?'" But while the NBC Nightly News focused solely on Coulter, on ABC’

How quickly can you hear a falsehood on the Al Franken Show on Air America Radio? Well, today, for me, it was about 15 seconds. (Is that a world record?)

I flipped on my radio. Bill O'Reilly was on commercials. So was Dennis Prager. I pressed a button, and for the first time in months, I stumbled upon the voice of Al Franken on Air America Radio. He was interviewing a guest, a nice, but naive-sounding, woman whom I later found out to be Anya Kamenetz.

In a few seconds, I heard that Al and her guest were discussing the economy, college, and the military. Within 15 seconds of tuning into Air America, Al's guest spewed the following whopper (audiotape on file):

"Well, the facts are this. The military is not meeting its recruiting targets. It's missing them year after year."

Yikes! Did she say "facts"? Well, here are some facts:

Every now and then, a storyline for an article hits you that it is so comical it makes it difficult to type between the laughter. This is one of them.

Drudge is reporting (hat tip from reader Sarcasmo) that former vice president Al Gore’s name has been omitted from the posters that advertise his new film: “Former Vice President Al Gore's name is nowhere to be found on PARAMOUNT's poster campaign for the new 'global warming' movie 'AN INCONVENIENT TRUTH.'"

Stopped laughing yet? Well, here’s another punch line: “‘It's not a political movie,’ a top source at PARAMOUNT explained, offering no other explanation on why Gore's name does not appear, even in the film's credits on the poster.”

That’s worth a replay, isn’t it (emphasis mine): “It’s not a political movie.”

I really love that line.

Ready for another hoot? Are you sure? Here goes:

There’s an old saying in business: money talks and, well, something that comes out of a male cow walks. In the case of Google, it appears that dollar signs, regardless of the foreign or domestic nature of the currency involved, have been more important than principle in some of its business dealings.

To be more specific, one of Google’s co-founders has admitted that his company caved in to demands from Chinese leaders to censor information available through its search engine to Chinese citizens in exchange for, well, yuan…which is dollars to you and me. As reported by the Associated Press: “Google Inc. co-founder Sergey Brin acknowledged Tuesday the dominant Internet company has compromised its principles by accommodating Chinese censorship demands.”

As Dorfman said in “Animal House,” boy this is great!

The article continued: “Google's China-approved Web service omits politically sensitive information that might be retrieved during Internet searches, such as details about the 1989 suppression of political unrest in Tiananmen Square. Its agreement with China has provoked considerable criticism from human rights groups.”

Curiously, this seems to go against one of  the “Ten things Google has found to be true” as expressed in its corporate philosophy statement: “You can make money without doing evil. 

But here’s the coup de grace:

Rick Kaplan, who as reported earlier by Matthew Sheffield, announced his departure Wednesday from MSNBC where he’d run the least-watched cable news network as its President since February of 2004, has a long record of friendly relations with former President Bill Clinton and hostility to conservatives -- as well as admiration for Dan Rather combined with condescension for conservative critics of Dan Rather -- during his career with ABC News, CNN and MSNBC. The AP’s David Bauder on Wednesday night noted “speculation” that Kaplan “might be a candidate to run Good Morning America” now that the ABC show's Executive Producer, Ben Sherwood, “announced five days ago he was stepping down.”

At the News and Documentary Emmy Awards presented by the National Television Academy at a September 19, 2005 ceremony, Kaplan asserted that "Dan was meticulously careful to be fair and balanced and accurate" during his career. Kaplan then lashed out: "When did we allow those with questionable agendas to take the lead and convince people of something quite the opposite? It's shameful." Kaplan went so far to declare that Rather's "legacy" is "the gold standard journalists today have struggled to live up to." Check this October 4 NewsBusters posting for a full transcript accompanied by a video clip in Real and Windows Media formats.

Hillary Clinton has bashed Ann Coulter for her "vicious, mean-spirited" attack on 9/11 widows who criticize President Bush.

Coulter had said in her book, "Godless: The Church of Liberalism," that the group acts "as if the terrorist attacks happened only to them," and that "I've never seen people enjoying their husbands' deaths so much."

MSNBC president Rick Kaplan has resigned from the network. TVNewser is on top of all the latest developments. Here's Kaplan's fairwell note:

Fox News Channel's Geraldo Rivera came out in favor of same-sex marriage on the June 5 edition of his syndicated Geraldo At Large. Throughout the show, Rivera teased his final commentary proclaiming: "25 years after the discovery of AIDS is this the time to ban gay marriage?....The gay community takes another hit, 25 years to the very day that AIDS first ravaged their community." At the end of the show, Rivera chastised the President and advocated same-sex marriage as a way to prevent the spread of AIDS:

The New York Times isn’t the only media outlet to try to find signs of GOP defeat in the midst of Brian Bilbray’s Republican victory in a San Diego special election for Congress. CBS reporter Jerry Bowen carried a sense of Democrat Francine Busby’s moral victory throughout his story on The Early Show this morning. Bowen began:

CBS’s Early Show co-hosts, in the wake of the June 6 loss in a special congressional election, did the best they could to put a positive spin on the fortunes of Democrats. Co-host Hannah Storm interviewed Evening News anchor Bob Schieffer at 7:11AM EDT about yesterday’s election. The Democratic candidate lost, but that didn’t stop Schieffer from prognosticating what this event signified for the future:

Schieffer: "So, who knows what's going to happen? But this has to be a sign to Republicans that they, they might lose the House, I think. I mean, not just, I'm not just saying this, this particular race....But I think this is just one more sign that you might see something happen this time."

Now, keep in mind, this is a race that the Republicans won. A victory that was achieved despite the media’s constant parroting of the Democratic "culture of corruption" talking points.

In a report on Wednesday's American Morning, CNN entertainment correspondent Brooke Anderson reported on the deal between People magazine and Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt over the exclusive rights to the photos of the couple’s daughter, Shiloh Nouvel Jolie-Pitt. During her report, Anderson made this rather strange analogy between the birth of Jolie-Pitt and Jesus Christ:

The Nation magazine is trying to soft sell the election in California's 50th District of Republican Brian Bilbray who is now replacing disgraced Republican, Randy "Duke" Cunningham. And they aren’t the only one’s trying to blow off the importance to the Democratic Party’s immediate future at the polls that this election might portend.

Several Washington members of the "mainstream" media elite gave the Washington Examiner their picks for what books they'll be reading this summer. has a problem with the NY Times art critic Grace Glueck being on the board of the trustees for the Clark Art Institute. The Journal wants to know:

  • Did Glueck's role at the museum in any way influence this past Sunday's Times story on the Clark?
  • In June, 2005, the Times reviewed a Jacques-Louis David show at the Clark instead of at the originating institution, the J. Paul Getty Museum. Did the Times skip the Getty presentation in deference to a colleague's institution? The Times ran two stories on David at the Clark -- and none on David at the Getty.
  • Why are there so many more stories in the NYT's arts section about the Clark than about virtually any other museum outside New York City that has a comparable (~$11 million per year) budget?

Good questions. And it's not as if this is business as usual for the Times. Their own ethics policy clearly states:

"[Times staff] may not join boards of trustees, advisory committees or similar groups except those serving journalistic organizations or otherwise promoting journalism education,"

Talk about losing your base! What say you, Pinch?