Newsweek’s Howard Fineman, in a new article entitled “Bush at the Tipping Point,” joined an expanding list of media representatives that have not only completely ignored statements made by Rep. John Murtha (D-Pennsylvania) concerning his disappointments with the Iraq war that came before his Thursday call for troop withdrawals, but also thoroughly misrepresented the level of support that Murtha gave to the initial war resolution back in October 2002:

“Murtha was the one-man tipping point. Initially a strong supporter of the conflict, he had voted for it and the money to pay for it. But on his last trip to Iraq, he had become convinced not only that the war was unwinnable, but that the continued American military presence was making matters far worse.”

As reported by NewsBusters here, Congressman Murtha first voiced dissent for this war in September 2003, and then again in May 2004. However, maybe most important, the record before the war resolution passed on October 11, 2002 shows Murtha as having initially been against invading Iraq, and only getting onboard when a revised resolution was proposed on October 2. Prior to those revisions authored by Democrats in the House to assuage dissenters like Murtha, the Congressman was quite vocal against an invasion:



There's an editorial at USA Today this morning (Bush picks another justice — and a fight over court's future) that does a wonderful job illustrating all of the problems with the media coverage of the Supreme Court debate. USA Today has chosen sides, and doesn't even seem to understand it.


In a report last night on CNN’s “Newsnight,” David Ensor continually referred to CIA employee Valerie Plame as being “undercover.” In fact, the entire report was about the dire consequences to the agency as a whole as a result of such an "outing," as well as to Plame:

“Forty-two-year-old Valerie Plame Wilson, whose husband referred to her as 'Jane Bond,' is clearly now the most famous female spy in America. Exposing her as a CIA undercover officer did damage to U.S. intelligence, U.S. officials say. They refuse to be more specific.”

Unfortunately, nowhere in the report did Ensor relay to the viewer that Plame has not been undercover since 1997, and, instead, has been working for the CIA on American soil ever since. In fact, as reported by USA Today back in July 2004:



Earlier today NewsBusters contributor Bob Owens noted that USA Today doctored an image of Condoleezza Rice.

Original:

Altered:

USA Today has now removed the doctered photographed of Condoleezza Rice and included a note from the editor with the correction:

Editor's note: The photo of Condoleezza Rice that originally accompanied this story was altered in a manner that did not meet USA TODAY's editorial standards. The photo has been replaced by a properly adjusted copy. Photos published online are routinely cropped for size and adjusted for brightness and sharpness to optimize their appearance. In this case, after sharpening the photo for clarity, the editor brightened a portion of Rice's face, giving her eyes an unnatural appearance. This resulted in a distortion of the original not in keeping with our editorial standards.



Michelle Malkin busts the photo editor of USA Today for manipulating a photo of Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice in a way that makes Dr. Rice look just a wee bit possessed.



The USA Today published an op-ed this morning by Sandy Grady entitled “Grounded by Hubris, Greed.” In it, Grady basically wrote Tom DeLay’s (R-Tex) career totally off, while making it clear for the reader that a trial at this point is just a formality:



Remember all those media predictions about the toxic nature of the floodwaters in New Orleans caused by Hurricane Katrina?  Well, it appears that much like their prognostications of casualties, how long it was going to take to drain the city, and the likely devastation to America’s economy, this too was an extraordinary exaggeration.

Here’s a sampling of the press opinions concerning this water made shortly after Katrina hit:

  • ABC News reported on September 6: "Thousands of hurricane survivors who spent hours trapped in or wading through floodwaters likely exposed themselves to a wide range of bacteria and other contaminants.”
  • Reuters reported on September 7: “The brew of chemicals and human waste in the New Orleans floodwaters will have to be pumped into the Mississippi River or Lake Pontchartrain, raising the specter of an environmental disaster on the heels of Hurricane Katrina, experts say.”
  • The Christian Science Monitor reported on September 8: “Chemicals leaking from cars and factories will cause one of costliest environmental cleanups ever.” 

Yet, today:



Shortly after yesterday’s announcement of Rep. Tom DeLay’s (R-Tex) indictment for alleged campaign finance violations, the mainstream media began doing reports on the subject with largely similar content. A memo written by Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean posted at the Democratic Party’s website almost immediately after the announcement was made contained virtually the same “hotbuttons” as those subsequently raised in media accounts of the story. 

What follows is a copy of that memo, along with comparisons to what has since been reported by leading media outlets on this subject:



In USA Today, reporter Jill Lawrence tackles the subject of the atheist left, and their new organization the Secular Coalition of America, but wait -- she never quite places them on the left.



The constant coverage of recently indicted lobbyist Jack Abramoff is less based on interest regarding his activities and more in the interest of slimy-ing House Majority Leader Tom DeLay and other Republicans.

The AP release about the indictement gives some detail about Abramoff, but also less-than-subtly throws in a few other names. (Questions that linger: Was Abramoff connected to Democrats?)

After dropping a DeLay mention in the very first sentence, the article later continues: