Hey, it's been a long day with all this Sherrod stuff. So let's kick back and enjoy some—unintentional—humor, courtesy Ed Schultz. On his MSNBC show this evening, Ed advised Dems not to go on Fox News because they'll "beat you up." Schultz then unleashed a torrent of venom on Andrew Breitbart, saying among—many—other things that Breitbart is a "nutjob" who "makes me sick."
But Schultz began the show by whining because—ready?—Breitbart wouldn't come on Ed's show.
Breitbart posted video of recently-fired USDA official Shirley Sherrod claiming she considered race in allocating federal agriculture funds. The apparent racism was debunked when the entire video surfaced, showing that Sherrod had actually discouraged such actions. "This is what happens" wrote Eric Deggans for the St. Petersburg "when ideologically-focused noise machines are treated like real news outlets."
Conspicuously absent in Deggans's screed is any mention of the recently-discovered attempt by liberal commentators to maliciously - and falsely, by their own admission - brand their ideological opponents as racists. Also absent: any mention of the litany of instances of dishonest and counter-factual reporting from the purportedly "objective" media.
Conservative journalist Andrew Breitbart and Eric Boehlert of the liberal organization Media Matters debated each other on Wednesday's Good Morning America. But ABC only identified the ideology of the right-leaning guest. Boehlert was simply the "senior fellow with the watchdog group Media Matters for America." [MP3 audio here.]
Yet, Breitbart's website was described in a previous segment as "conservative." In a follow-up piece, news anchor Juju Chang labeled him "a conservative blogger." Breitbart and Boehlert were appearing to discuss the firing of USDA employee Shirley Sherrod, following the posting of a tape of her on Breitbart's website.
Almost from the moment Barack Obama declared he would run for president in 2007, our enraptured media elite has been accusing anyone who would stand in Obama’s way with racism. The question was never whether Obama was ready to govern the country, but whether the country was ready for the historic awesomeness of Obama.
Pity the NAACP. We now have a black president, and they must convince (racist) America that there still exists the need for a national association to advance “colored people” in our society. How to do it? Identify and condemn as “racists” anyone or any group opposed to Barack Obama.
Apparently you cannot sincerely oppose a crushing tax burden, a useless “stimulus” bill, ObamaCare, or any other element of his socialist agenda without being tagged as a bigot.
On Monday, Andrew Breitbart, on his blog Big Government, revealed video of a Department of Agriculture official making racially charged comments at an NAACP meeting in March. While the media were quick to jump on the civil rights organization accusing the tea party of racism last week, they have failed to provide any coverage of this controversy.
The comments were made by the USDA's Georgia Director of Rural Development Shirley Sherrod at a NAACP Freedom Fund dinner in Georgia on March 27. As the video clearly shows, Sherrod's description of discriminating against white farmers was well received by the audience. The comments stirred so much controversy that Sherrod resigned Monday night and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack was forced to issue a statement on the matter: "“There is zero tolerance for discrimination at USDA, and I strongly condemn any act of discrimination against any person.”
As NewsBusters' Noel Sheppard earlier reported, none of the network evening news broadcasts touched the story on Monday . On Tuesday, the CBS Early Show, NBC's Today, and ABC's Good Morning America were all silent on the controversy and resignation. However, all three morning shows did manage to focus on a recent verbal gaffe made by Sarah Palin.
Despite all the attention given to last week's National Association for the Advancement of Colored People's resolution against the Tea Party, all three broadcast evening news programs completely ignored Monday's revelations of racist comments made at one of the civil rights organization's meetings in March.
At 8:18 AM Monday, Big Government reported that on March 27, Shirley Sherrod, the USDA's Rural Development director for the state of Georgia, delivered a racism-laden address at the NAACP's 20th Annual Freedom Fund Banquet.
Here's a taste of what the so-called news divisions at ABC, CBS, and NBC ignored Monday (video follows with partial transcript and commentary):
"$100,000 is not a lot to spend on the Holy Grail of media bias when there is a country to save, " Breitbart wrote yesterday. Americans "deserve to know who was colluding against them," he added, "so that in the future they can better understand how the once-objective media has come to be so corrupted and despised."
And there's the rub: Breitbart is attempting to out liberal journalists as just that: liberal. His tactics and his objectives have been dubbed by some on the left as "digital McCarthyism," in the words of Michael Roston, "in which any of us could become the next Dave Weigel based not on the public output of our journalism, but based on our private sentiments."
Note that the incident took place "last week," according to the linked BigGovernment.com post, which means that Etheridge didn't see the need for an apology until the video went viral.
So ... who does the intrepid Associated Press attempt to go to for comment? The Congressman? Apparently not, as you will see; the AP must see his "apology" as the end of the story. The person whom Etheridge arguably assaulted? Legal experts, who could weigh in on whether the congressman could be arrested and and charged? House or Democratic Party colleagues? No-no-no.
Get a load, in the final paragraph of what will probably end up being a brief initial report, of who the AP believes owes it a comment first and foremost:
Are the mainstream media playing fast and loose with their coverage of the tea parties and what the tea party activists believe? Andrew Breitbart says they are, and points to accusations of racism.
Breitbart spoke at one of the tea party events held near the Washington Monument in Washington, D.C. on April 15. He said his involvement in the movement began when he realized how the media would react to the Tea Party movement and detailed an incident in which Contessa Brewer's MSNBC cropped out the face of a black man in footage of a tea party event to make the movement appear to lack diversity.
"I think that we're going to have a problem if we want to start talking about founding fathers, the founding documents, what the origins of our country because the mainstream media is not going to like what you have to say, and so I volunteered myself," Breitbart said. "And on day one, I had to contend with the fact that you guys were called ‘teabaggers.' And I had to deal with the fact an unfortunately named sister, by the name of Contessa Brewer on MSNBC, before you even spoke, told you what your grievances were to the country and our dissent his patriotic presidency. This person took a photo and cut off the head of a black man, and asked is the tea party nation - are the people who are protesting Barack Obama racist? The person was black."
During a question and answer time after a speech at Harvard University, Andrew Breitbart confronted AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka about claims that TEA Party members hurled racial slurs at black members of Congress. Trumka then preceded to claim that he personally saw members of the TEA Party spitting on people and hurling racial slurs:
Washington Post ombudsman Andrew Alexander called for more investigation of Democrats' allegations of racial slurs from Tea Party protesters on Capitol Hill, even noting Andrew Breitbart's $100,000 challenge for evidence. He concluded his Sunday column:
Breitbart's $100,000 challenge may be publicity-seeking theater. But it's part of widespread conservative claims that mainstream media, including The Post, swallowed a huge fabrication. The incidents are weeks old, but it's worth assigning Post reporters to find the truth. After all, a civil rights legend is being called a liar. That aside, there's serious money at stake.
Alexander explored three different claims. The claim that Rep. Emanuel Cleaver was purposely spat upon looked shaky to him, and he said the Post overplayed it:
Is it possible to be so wrapped up in a media culture that one could minimize a sacred religious holiday in a shoddy attempt to write a clever headline? Mediaite's Tommy Christopher and his editors seemed to have pulled this feat off.
Christopher, who has had a much-publicized run-in with Andrew Breitbart, has a new hero, former American Enterprise Institute scholar David Frum. Christopher elevated Frum to messianic status in a Good Friday April 2 post headlined "Did David Frum ‘Die' For GOP's Sins?" specifically praising the former AEI scholar for his appearance on Comedy Central's April 1 "The Colbert Report."
According to Christopher, Frum still wants to be a conservative and hasn't converted to the liberal ideology, like others have before him. He argued that lends credence to Frum, who is more known for levying criticisms about conservatives and Republicans, and not his conservative world view. (As if being popular with the liberal blogosphere was a badge of honor.)