Jonathan Alter, who spent 28 years at Newsweek, has been a columnist at Bloomberg News since early this year. Just this year, the reliably and insufferably liberal Alter, among many other things, called the Republican House's passage of Paul Ryan's budget plan in April an attempt "to throw Granny in the snow," and coldly calculated that in the wake of her shooting, Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was more valuable to Barack Obama's reelection efforts alive than dead.

In early January, Alter, appearing on an MSNBC program, took great offense at Rep. Darrell Issa's suggestion that the Obama White House is "one of the most corrupt administrations ever," claiming that "there is zero evidence" of it. The Washington Examiner's Tim Carney proceeded to identify seven such examples. Alter must have been saying "la-la I can't hear you" during Carney's chronicle, as his October 27 column was an exercise in sheer fantasy from beginning to end (bolds are mine throughout this post):

Poor Steven Chu. The Nobel Prize-winning scientist and Obama's Energy Secretary stands "at [the] center of [the] Solyndra policy storm," where he's learning "lessons in political science" according to Washington Post staffer Steven Mufson's 45-paragraph front-page article in the October 28 paper.

Although the Post has done a decent job thus far in following the Solyndra scandal and reporting on the unfolding revelations of damning emails from administration officials who questioned the wisdom and legality of the Solyndra loan, Mufson's piece was focused on defending Chu as a well-meaning career scientist and political neophyte who's been caught up in an unfortunate political firestorm (emphases mine):

ABC's Brian Ross on Friday investigated a $500 million government loan to a car company that is now operating in Finland. Ross highlighted how Vice President Joe Biden in 2009 claimed this would create jobs in America. Yet, the Good Morning America reporter left out a key component for the network version of the story: Fisker, the European car company involved, have ties to big Obama campaign bundlers.

Ross began the segment by explaining to viewers: "[Henrik] Fisker got a federal loan two years ago of more than $500 million, with Vice President Joseph Biden saying the company would employ auto workers in his home state, Delaware." Yet, the 500 jobs created are in Finland, not the United States.  [See video below. MP3 audio here.]


Update (10:00 EDT, Oct. 20): CNBC has an update/correction on the story:

<<Update: On Wednesday evening, a Department of Energy spokesman said that the press releases had been returned to their original content as a result of CNBC's inquiry about the changes.

Correction: A previous headline on this article incorrectly characterized the press releases as being related to Solyndra.>>

Is the Obama administration literally rewriting history when it comes to the Solyndra scandal Energy Department's solar energy loan programs?

"Someone affiliated with the Department of Energy has been going back to make changes to press releases posted on the Internet weeks and months ago," Eamon Javers of CNBC reported this afternoon.

In a front-page story today, Politico's Darren Samuelsohn relayed the ire of liberal think tanks and blogs "bemoaning the 'out of proportion' Solyndra coverage" in the media. We at NewsBusters are not sure what planet these folks are living on.

A search of the Nexis database for Solyndra stories on ABC, CBS and NBC between September 8 -- when the FBI raided the company's headquarters -- and today turned up just 19 stories. Of those, the vast majority are from September.

NBC has had no stories on Solyndra in the month of October. CBS Evening News anchor Scott Pelley briefly noted the resignation of the company's CEO on the October 13 program, but without any reference to emails that had been unearthed that questioned the wisdom and legality of the loan while it was being finalized by the Obama Energy Department:

Walter Cronkite's longtime producer Leslie Midgley once wrote that "News is what an editor decides it is." News today is what TV producers decide can help President Obama. News that hurts isn't news at all.

In the last week, network anchors like Brian Williams repeated endlessly that the "Occupy Wall Street" protests are "increasingly resonating." It’s the story reporters will declare "isn’t going away" -- and they're going to see to it. They are using their microphones like yellow Hi-Liter pens to draw attention to it.

Two more shoes dropped in the Solyndra scandal today, but it remains to be seen their sound will stir the sleepy liberal lapdog media.

Solyndra CEO Brian Harrison resigned last Friday, the Associated Press reported early this afternoon.

Oh, and while the media of late have cheerleading the Democratic push for a new surtax on millionaires, don't expect the news media, particularly MSNBC, to note how a key Obama donor who pushed for the Solyndra loan has been delinquent on his evaded federal taxes for years. As Washington Examiner's Mark Tapscott noted this morning:

As a service to the 10 people who will somehow manage to find the Bloomberg Television channel on their cable box tonight in order to watch the network's GOP presidential debate, Bloomberg News today published and the Washington Post syndicated a "Viewers' Guide to Economic Jargon."

While most of the article is helpful and unbiased, Bloomberg News seriously downplayed the scandalous nature of the ill-conceived Solyndra loan. Here's how Bloomberg defined the controversy surrounding the firm that was raided by the FBI in early September:

Editor's Note: What follows is a statement NewsBusters publisher Brent Bozell released this afternoon reacting to the findings of a Media Research Center study on the media's Solyndra coverage.

ABC, CBS and NBC are aiding and abetting in the cover-up of an outrageous scandal linked directly to Obama and his failed economic policies. Even the uber liberal New York Times could not ignore this outrage, spotlighting it on their front page this weekend. Yet these networks are intentionally minimizing coverage to avoid reporting the failure and scandal that resulted under Obama’s watch for the same stimulus package they hailed in 2009.

What further compounds the hypocrisy of ignoring this scandal is the excessive, glowing coverage these same networks are giving the Occupy Wall Street protests. While they gather to oppose "corporate greed," the media quietly dismiss the most outrageous scandal in years – and financed by their taxpaying dollars.


A study by the Media Research Center finds that the three broadcast networks are providing virtually no coverage of the Solyndra scandal, a solar energy firm that went bankrupt after getting more than $500 million in taxpayer money from the Obama administration. This is not the approach the networks took after the collapse of Enron, an energy company with Republican ties. In just the first two months of 2002, the ABC, CBS and NBC evening newscasts cranked out 198 stories on the Enron debacle, compared to just eight so far on Solyndra, a 24-to-1 disparity. Details after the jump.

Yesterday, in a different post about long-term unemployment, I wrote: "Of all the reality-denying aspects of Obama administration press coverage, the usually implicit but occasionally explicit assertion that he and his people are just helpless bystanders in an economic calamiity is easily among the most annoying."

Bloomberg's Mike Dorning triggered the annoyance meter today with an "analysis" contending that President Obama's move from being a "conciliator" (quoting an alleged "expert") to supporting "populist causes" and sympathizing with the anti-capitalist Occupy Wall Street assemblage "may provide some inoculation" against the continuing bad economy -- as if Obama, Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, and the their party bear no conceivable responsibility for current economic conditions. Here are the first seven paragraphs of Dorning's dreck (bolds and numbered tags are mine):

Energy Department bureaucrat Jonathan Silver tendered his resignation on October 6, effective the following day. Silver led the Energy Department office that approved the ill-fated $528 million loan to solar energy firm Solyndra, despite concerns from some in the White House that it was a disaster waiting to happen.

Although the development occurred the same day as President Obama reiterated his support for similar loans for green energy, the New York Times buried staff writer Matthew Wald's story on page A17 of the October 7 paper.

Wald closed his article by quoting President Obama's defense of loans to green energy firms: