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Are the moralists of the Washington Post Style section really the kind of people who believe Kenneth Lay, the CEO of the collapsing racket of Enron, is a viler historical figure than Saddam Hussein? A review of the documentary evidence would suggest yes. Rich Noyes remembered Style essayist Henry Allen's rather savage take on Mr. Lay last July 6 after he died before justice kicked in:

But now that he's died of a heart attack in the luxury of his Colorado getaway while awaiting sentencing for his crimes, none of his victims will be able to contemplate that he's locked away in a place that makes the Baltimore Harbor Tunnel look like Hawaii; that he might be spending long nights locked in a cell with a panting tattooed monster named Sumo, a man of strange and constant demands; and long days in the prison laundry or jute mill or license plate factory, gibbering with anguish as fire-eyed psychopaths stare at him for unblinking hours while they sharpen spoons into jailhouse stilettos.

Then compare that to Style essayist Philip Kennicott on New Year's Eve, feeling only a marginal distaste for Saddam, who was apparently just a paper tiger manufactured by Team Bush. He was a bad guy, yadda yadda, but he has nothing to do with Iraq now:

In their first broadcast of 2007, ABC’s Nightline devoted the entire program to re-airing portions of stories from 2006 dealing with "power," including the shift in political power in the United States. The final segment of the newscast, entitled ‘Here Come the Democrats,’ featured three friendly profiles of prominent Democrats, including Cynthia McFadden’s tea with Senator Hillary Clinton and Terry Moran’s ‘Oba-mania’ during his interview with Illinois Senator Barack Obama. Here are some examples of the softball questions to Clinton and Obama re-broadcast Monday night:

Cynthia McFadden: "Do you actually like it? Do you actually like campaigning?...So, an association game, if you'll--if you will, a word or two about the following political folks, okay? President George Bush?

Senator Hillary Clinton: "Disappointing."

McFadden: "....So George Bush is disappointing....Is America ready for a female president? What do you think?"

Terry Moran: "Right now you're on a roll. You're--people, 'Oba-mania, they, they call it. The rock star. You get a big cheer when you get up there....It seems sometimes that much of your politics is about bridging divides....Republican-Democrat, black-white, red-blue. Is your politics about your biography?"

Two days before Democrats open the new Congress in the majority, CNN business reporter Ali Velshi echoed their liberal talking points on the minimum wage.

See my story here.

Liberal activists and Democratic spokesmen are quick to argue that the minimum wage is too low and unfair. But on the January 2 “American Morning,” that argument came from a CNN business reporter.

While CNN’s Ali Velshi did note that “a lot of small businesses oppose” the new Democratic majority’s proposed wage hike, he insisted “the bottom line is it’s simply not fair that there has been a federal minimum wage of $5.15 an hour” or “about $900 a week.”

His math was way off – $5.15 an hour comes to $206 per week. Velshi probably meant that a minimum wage earner would pull down close to $900 a month, given a 40-hour work week. Pay at $900 a week translates to $46,800 a year, a few hundred dollars more than the U.S. median income in 2005. Of course if pay “fairness” could be legislated by Congress as Velshi advocated, that would be a minor detail.

'American Morning's' Ali Velshi pushes liberal talking points on minimum wage.

Previewing a segment on the January 1 edition of "Situation Room," a CNN graphic confused the world’s most wanted terrorist with Senator Barack Obama. Anchor Wolf Blitzer teased a piece on the hunt for Osama bin Laden by wondering about "another man feared and hated around the world. That would be Osama bin Laden." Unfortunately, the onscreen graphic asked "Where’s Obama?" Perhaps the cable network was just following the lead of Ted Kennedy, who famously referred to the Illinois Senator as "Osama Obama."

Fill 'er up, folks!

It goes without saying that one of the clarion calls for the liberal media is unlimited abortion on demand with absolutely no restrictions to a woman’s supposed “right to choose.” In a New Year’s eve article written by New York Times ombudsman Byron Calame, it is clear that the folks at the Old Gray Lady don’t understand that the killing of a baby really is murder (hat tip to Hot Air, emphasis mine throughout):

THE cover story on abortion in El Salvador in The New York Times Magazine on April 9 contained prominent references to an attention-grabbing fact. “A few” women, the first paragraph indicated, were serving 30-year jail terms for having had abortions. That reference included a young woman named Carmen Climaco. The article concluded with a dramatic account of how Ms. Climaco received the sentence after her pregnancy had been aborted after 18 weeks.

Was this the case? Not even close:

Don't look for Tom Brokaw to turn up in an "Army Strong" ad anytime soon . . .

Brokaw will praise President Ford in the eulogy he will deliver later today. But it was the former NBC anchor in a much more familiar role -- that of criticizing a Republican administration -- on this morning's "Today." Along the way, he did his best to dampen enthusiasm among potential military recruits.

Discussing the execution of Saddam and the possibility of a surge, Brokaw opined:

"The manner in which Saddam Hussein was executed reveals the essential truths about Iraq: that this is a deeply divided country along tribal lines. And the idea that we're going to impose the rule of law and democracy there by putting in more troops now will seem to most people, especially those families that may be sending somebody there, like a folly. And a lot of families, and I think a lot of people who are raising their hands to join the armed services are wondering 'I'm giving my life for that?'"

This morning the Washington Post published a story about how the Democrats are going to exclude Republicans from participating in the "First 100 Hours" plan that the Democrats intend to implement when they officially become the majority in the House of Representatives this week.

On the Federal Page in Tuesday's Washington Post, Jeffrey Birnbaum, who covers lobbying, suggests it's not "genuine" for the National Rifle Association to sound the alarm on threats to gun rights at the moment: "No one expects gun legislation to pass this year." But in dismissing the "not-so-imminent threat" (as the article's headline describes it), Birnbaum goes too far:

Do parents actually watch what their kids watch on MTV? Or, in the effort to be "un-priggish," have they completely abdicated responsibility to turn the garbage off?

We report when they get it wrong, and now we can report when they get it right...

And it's about time some American news source describes how well most of Iraq is doing since the US led overthrow of Saddam's regime. It is a fact that escapes too many in the western media who's only goal seems to be to attack America in general and George W. Bush n particular.


It appears as though the New York Times endorses on line video when it shows the deaths of American military personnel; however showing the death by hanging of Saddam Hussein may be over the top.

Assume for a second that it is 1945, and it has just been learned that Adolf Hitler is dead. Would America’s media offer this madman the respect of referring to him as “Mr. Hitler?” Well, if the newspaper in question was the New York Times, the answer might definitely be “Yes,” for in a New Year’s day article about the supposed “rush to hang” the former genocidal leader of Iraq, the Times regularly referred to the now demised despot as “Mr. Hussein” (emphasis mine throughout):

With his plain pine coffin strapped into an American military helicopter for a predawn journey across the desert, Saddam Hussein, the executed dictator who built a legend with his defiance of America, completed a turbulent passage into history on Sunday.

Like the helicopter trip, just about everything in the 24 hours that began with Mr. Hussein’s being taken to his execution from his cell in an American military detention center in the postmidnight chill of Saturday had a surreal and even cinematic quality.

Fascinating. So, in the Times’ view, “Mr. Hussein” is a legend? How marvelous. The article continued:

It should never amaze media watchers when a press member finds fault in justice being doled out to the clearly guilty, even when the party in question is a genocidal despot. With that in mind, it didn’t take long for NBC to question the integrity of Saddam Hussein’s hanging, and espouse to viewers a downside for America as well as the country the tyrant once ruled with an iron fist.

Adding insult to injury, correspondent Richard Engel so editorialized on the final “Nightly News” of 2006 (video available here):

It was a major public relations blow for the US administration and the Iraqi government which have been trying to show the world that Saddam Hussein received impartial justice. Now with this brief video, that's being called into question as today Saddam was laid to rest.

At the site of Saddam’s burial, Engel chose to first interview a grieving Hussein loyalist even though Iraq is dominated by Shia Muslims who passionately despise the former dictator: