World News anchor and long-time ABC journalist Diane Sawyer signed-off for the last time on Wednesday night. The host's final show included a music montage as she offered a behind the scenes look at how the program is created. Sawyer praised World News as "the flagship broadcast of ABC where Peter Jennings created a signature of such curiosity and courage."
Talking to viewers, Sawyer said of the people behind her show: "Determination and the certainty of purpose: They're doing it for you." [See video below. MP3 audio here.] Sawyer joined ABC in 1989 and if there's been one constant during her long career, it's fawning, credulous reporting on dictators. On February 19, 2008, she cooed over Fidel Castro: "From a tiny island, a larger than life personality....Castro knew life is a stage and played the part of the dashing revolutionary, coming to New York, getting rock star treatment."
In the wake of the “big three” networks (ABC, CBS, NBC) devoting 25 minutes to the indictment of Governor Rick Perry (R-TX) in the story’s first two days, ABC’s World News with Diane Sawyer continued the network obsession with the potential 2016 presidential candidate.
On Monday, August 18, anchor Diane Sawyer introduced a report on Perry by proclaiming “back here at home to Texas and a kind of high noon for Texas Governor Rick Perry facing indictment, but defiant again today.” [See video below.]
What’s the difference between a political scandal involving a Republican and one involving a Democrat? When it comes to news coverage, reporters almost always identify the political party of a Republican caught in a scandal, but when the culprit is a Democrat, the party label is usually left out of the story.
There are exceptions to this rule, of course, but not many. To prove the point, here’s how ABC, CBS and NBC have identified (or failed to identify) the figures in 16 political scandals — 8 Democrats, 8 Republicans — as documented by NewsBusters during the past few years:
Released on Friday morning, the latest jobs report from the Labor Department touted a net growth of 209,000 jobs in July. On Friday evening, the report was promoted on all three of the major broadcast networks, ranging from news briefs by ABC and NBC to a full report from CBS. While there was plenty of praise and even an ounce of positive news, the networks mostly failed to note that the economy still has a long way to go.
Over on the CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley, substitute anchor James Brown provided a neutral outlook that while “[e]mployers added 209,000 jobs last month,” it was “not enough to meet demand” due to the fact that “[a]s more workers enter the job hunt, the unemployment rate ticked up to 6.2%.” His summary was followed by a report from CBS News senior business correspondent Anthony Mason in which Mason profiled a woman who recently found a job after being laid off in 2011. [MP3 audio here; Video below]
On Friday night, the major broadcast networks all covered the latest developments in the conflict between the Israelis and Hamas as a three-day cease-fire collapsed after an Israeli solider was captured during an ambush while the two sides fought in an underground tunnel. In their coverage, the networks used some harsh language in describing the Israeli offensive to seek out those responsible and two networks touted Palestinians praising the capture.
Anchor Diane Sawyer said on ABC World News described Israel’s actions after “one of their soldiers was apparently captured by Hamas” as “[a] pounding response.” In a report from ABC News chief foreign correspondent Terry Moran, he noted how, at the start of the cease fire, there “was quiet in Gaza” as “[y]ou could hear the birds chirp” before noting that, not long after, “it was on again.” [MP3 audio here; Video below]
“Sharknado 2: The Second One” is poised to take a bite out of Manhattan and devour many of the week’s water-cooler conversations. Like the first “Sharknado” movie, the premise is so ridiculous it actually manages to entertain.
In the same way, some media claims about what climate change has already done or threatens to do in the future are so absurd they’re actually laughable. Climate-change alarmists have linked global warming to practically everything, heatwaves, snowstorms, droughts, floods, hurricanes and many things far more ridiculous. Here are just five of the most wacky, as wacky as Ian Ziering fighting a tornado of sharks with a chainsaw:
On Tuesday, July 22, two federal appeals courts ruled in different directions over the constitutionality of tax subsidies given to individuals who purchase health insurance through the federal ObamaCare exchange. At issue, was language in the law where subsidies would be given to individuals who purchased health insurance in an exchange “established by the state.”
In a 2-1 ruling, the D.C. Court of Appeals ruled that the IRS went too far by providing subsidies to individuals on the federal exchange but a separate ruling by the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld those same subsidies. Despite the contradictory rulings and the likelihood that the Supreme Court will take up the case, ABC was the only network evening news show to cover the story on Tuesday night. [See video below.]
Monday's CBS Evening News was the only Big Three morning or evening newscast to cover the conviction of Azamat Tazhayakov, who was found guilty of obstructing the investigation into the April 2013 Boston Marathon bombing. Jurors also convicted Tazhayakov of taking part in a "conspiracy with his off-campus roommate to hide incriminating evidence in the days immediately after the attack," as reported by the Boston Globe on Monday.
Anchor Scott Pelley gave a 19-second news brief to the conviction of the former student at the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
On Wednesday, ABC and CBS's evening newscasts punted yet again on reporting Ray Nagin's Democratic affiliation, after the disgraced former New Orleans mayor was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison for corruption. World News and CBS Evening News previously omitted Nagin's party ID when he was indicted in January 2013, and after a jury convicted him in February 2014.
ABC's Diane Sawyer hyped that the politician's sentencing was "a staggering fall from grace for the man who rose to national fame leading his city through Hurricane Katrina," but failed to mention that the Democrat was widely criticized for his handling of the disaster. By contrast, Brian Williams mentioned both his political affiliation and the post-Katrina criticism on NBC Nightly News: [MP3 audio available here; video below the jump]
It took an entire day but ABC finally reported on its own Jonathan Karl, ABC News Chief White House Correspondent, and his confrontation with White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest.
Karl’s battle with Earnest came on Monday, July 7, and both that evening’s World News with Diane Sawyer and Good Morning America on Tuesday, July 8 ignored the story. World News on Tuesday night finally provided a full report on the border crisis courtesy of Karl himself. [See video below.]
On Monday, July 7, Jonathan Karl, ABC’s Chief White House Correspondent, challenged White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest, over whether or not the Obama Administration was deporting illegal immigrants at the rate they claim to be.
Despite the contentious back-and-forth in which the ABC reporter accused the White House of providing “disinformation” on the number of illegal children being deported, ABC's World News with Diane Sawyer ignored Karl’s questioning of Earnest on Monday night.
It's only July of 2014, but two panelists on the Morning Joe program expressed concern during Thursday's edition that people within the media are already suffering from “Clinton Exhaustion” even though the former secretary of state has yet to announce whether she will be a candidate in the 2016 presidential election.
If that's the case, then one of the worst offenders is the staff of that MSNBC morning show, which usually finds a way to spend up to 15 minutes a day discussing the latest “news” about Hillary Clinton, ranging from her “Hard Choices” book -- which is suffering from poor sales -- to question if she's a victim of “sexism” and “ageism.”