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The Denver Post has finally broken its silence about the developing Air America story. Only, as with the New York Times and the Swift Boat Veterans, the first mention of it is a dismissal followed by a rebuttal. Dick Kreck addresses the scandal in his radio column in today's Entertainment section.

First, the setup:



NPR’s Nina Totenberg is repeatedly surprised by how conservative Supreme Court nominee John Roberts really is, apparently not cognizant of all of her earlier pronouncements about his conservatism. On Inside Washington over the weekend, she declared that after reviewing memos he wrote while working in the Reagan White House counsel’s office, “he is much more conservative than I ever would have guessed.


First it was nonexistent weapons of mass destruction.  Then he was AWOL.  After that came Plamegate.  So, what pray tell will be the next left-wing attack on our president? 

Potentially, the manner in which the Vioxx story was covered this weekend by the New York Times gives us some clues. 

To begin with, a front-page article Saturday by Alex Berenson reported the surprise verdict that gave the widow of a man who died after taking Merck’s painkiller an astounding $253.5 million award including $229 million in punitive damages.

Just in case people missed it, the Times ran another article by Mr. Berenson on Sunday -- again on the front-page -- that appears to move this story in a suspiciously political direction:



Mike Allen (or at least his editors at the WashPost) are REALLY reaching now to keep plugging the Cindy Sheehan Brigade even after Cindy Sheehan has left the ranch. On the front page of the Style section is this don't-lose-hope-lefties puff piece: "They Are Stardust, And in Texas: At the Crawford Protest Camp, Growing Echoes of Woodstock."



"Benedict XVI's arrival for the open-air mass that culminated World Youth Day was the most subdued any of the reporters who cover the Vatican could remember," wrote CBS correspondent Allen Pizzey, opening his online "reporter's notebook" entry on World Youth Day 2005.

Pizzey did avoid openly slamming the pontiff from the Left on his culturally conservative positions, but hinted repeatedly that the German Pope Benedict was given polite but uneasy deference from his countrymen: "Benedict gets the adoration and professed love and respect one would expect for a man in his position, with a sense that there is also a 'but...' hanging in the air."



Cindy Sheehan. Cindy Sheehan. Cindy Sheehan.

I only do that to satisfy what I assume is a "Cindy Sheehan name content quota" in place for any newspaper article written on any subject related to the War in Iraq, whether it's about her or not.



Today's Washington Post features one of those headlines that make people who want to have an honest debate on illegal immigration shake their heads ruefully.

The headline reads: "Ranch Turned Over to Immigrants"

Would you know, from reading that headline that the immigrants in question were illegal immigrants and they won the ranch in a civil lawsuit?

Neither would I.



One of the more worrying ongoing stories is the arrest of several men for involvement in a conspiracy, hatched in California's Folsom prison to attack Jewish sites and synagogues around the state. What's worrying is that one of the men apparently converted to a radical form of Islam while in prison.



           The left-wing organization Media Matters (MMFA) appears to have been caught red-handed in an ugly and false smear attack against Cliff Kincaid, editor of Accuracy in Media (AIM) and president of America's Survival, Inc. In an August 19, 2005, item entitled,  "AIM's Kincaid posted 'letter' from Afghan ambassador thanking him for petition to extradite Newsweek


John Tierney, who has taken over the retiring William Safire’s op-ed slot in The New York Times, weighs in today with a  http://www.nytimes.com/2005/08/20/opinion/20tierney.html  column comparing golf to other Pleistocene interests of men. A self-confessed golf-hater, Tierney spends his 800 words ringing through a series of "men are from Mars" cliches. His sole insight, from a round of playing disc (or Frisbee) golf? Men like to look down on a savannah-like landscape and shoot something at it.



New York Times Executive Editor Bill Keller drew headlines for the odd practice of writing a letter to the editor of his own Book Review. (It's almost like writing a letter to himself.) He's highly offended that anyone would suggest he doesn't have a passion for tough reporting on liberals. (Earth to Keller: how about that little Air America scandal?) The actual letter from today's paper is here.



President Bush and Lance Armstrong participated in the "Tour de Crawford" today as the pair took part in a 17 mile mountain bike ride on Bush's ranch.


A.P. reporter Nedra Pickler was probably assigned to write a simple, short story regarding the President of the United States biking in Crawford with the Champion cyclist of the world, Lance Armstrong.  Still, in a short 408 word essay, Pickler managed to insert the standard Bush-bash line.  Earth-shattering?  No.  Unexpected?  Not at all.  Petty?  Indeed.



When they’re not outright telling us what to think, the AP sometimes points out the tediously banal and attempts to use that to influence public opinion. Take today’s John Roberts-bashing piece called, “Roberts' Writings Reveal Strong Views.”



Bob Costas made news today for not hosting a show and immediately became my hero:
While some cable TV hosts are making their living off the Natalee Holloway case this summer, Bob Costas is having none of it.

Costas, hired by CNN as an occasional fill-in on "Larry King Live," refused to anchor Thursday's show because it was primarily about the Alabama teenager who went missing in Aruba. Chris Pixley filled in at the last minute.