Irene, Goodnight

August 29, 2011

Here we are, in the aftermath of yet another hyped up “stormageddon”. Once again, the media grabbed the spotlight and inserted themselves into the narrative of a weather condition that happens so regularly that there’s an actual season named after it. Sadly, many reporters consider this a valid excuse to stand in bad light, driving rain, and gusty winds and pretend to look brave or macho or something. (Yes, Geraldo, I’m talking to you.)

Hurricanes are nothing to make light of, as most of us know. But to make one the centerpiece of the news cycle for five days running is not just overhype, it borders on insanity.

Lives were lost. Property was damaged or destroyed. Those things were reported over and over with almost unholy glee.

Like many other things, weather happens. Please, mainstream media, please: report on the weather, the expected conditions, path, and duration. Then just leave it alone.

I’ll be writing more later, but right now, I have to get a tree off my roof.

Stoutcat


Jake Tapper Commits Journalism!

August 4, 2011

ABC News’ Jake Tapper does a gorgeous job of getting Press Secretary Jay Carney to admit that the President, despite his renewed protestations of “laser-like focus” on jobs, really isn’t doing all that much. As usual.

Wouldn’t it have been nice to see this level of interest by reporters way back in 2007 and 2008?

Stoutcat


Bias in the Media? What Next!

May 5, 2010

 

Our favorite writer, Bill Whittle, takes on media bias. What’s not to love?

“Now, most people think that this left-leaning press bias is a relatively recent phenomenon, but it’s not. And the consequences are not just skewed elections, as if that’s not serious enough, that’s just political ruin. But the consequence of this left-leaning press bias has cost a lot of people their lives–a lot of people…”

Stoutcat


Reporters Not Doing So Well with That “Press=Flaming Sword” Thing

April 21, 2010

 

“The power and the freedom of the press is a flaming sword. That it may be a faithful servant to all the people, use it justly… hold it high… guard it well.”

Lafayette Park, located directly across from the Whte House, was closed yesterday, so that half a dozen servicemen could handcuff themselves to the White House fence in peace and privace privacy, unmolested by our valiant servants of the press. The protesters were objecting to the military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy.

Michael Walsh at Big Government says his blood is boiling.

It’s not just the cop’s rudeness and bullying, although that’s bad enough… There had better be a pretty darn good reason from barring citizens, and their representatives in the media, from a public park, and this sure doesn’t seem like it.

What’s even more disheartening, though, is the way the reporters passively accept getting shoved around, and meekly shuffle backwards while complaining into their cell phones.  And they weren’t sounding off like they had a pair, either.

Lafayette Park is closed. Docile reporters meekly move back. And back. And they keep moving back.

We don’t know why the park was closed (well, of course we do), but nobody reported on that.

We don’t know who authorized the park’s closing, because nobody reported on that.

We don’t know how long the park had been closed, because nobody reported on that.

We don’t know when the park would re-open, because nobody reported on that.

Lafayette Park reportedly has the densest squirrel population known to science. It seems that our “reporters” are nothing more than a few more squirrels, hoping for crumbs from the tourists.

Pathetic.

Stoutcat

Via HotAir


That’s Got To Hurt!

January 25, 2010

 

From Joe Fitzgerald in today’s Boston Herald:

Do we look at Janet Napolitano and feel safe? No.

Do we look at Tim Geithner and feel prosperous? No.

Do we look at Eric Holder and feel united? No.

When we look at our borders, our economy, our troops in harm’s way, do we then look at this president and the people who surround him and feel we’re in good hands? No.

It’s finally dawning on him that we can no longer be appeased by the turning of a clever phrase.

He [Obama] came here a week ago yesterday expecting to sweep us off our feet in behalf of Martha Coakley, only to find that for the third time in recent months – four if you count his failed Olympic plea – his endorsement meant nothing.

Truth be told, when it comes to political coattails, this president’s now wearing a tank top. [emphasis mine]

Well, even if the MSM isn’t up to actual reporting, it’s good to see a writer get in a bit of snark every once in a while.

Stoutcat

H/T: Commenter Josie


Doing The Job The MSM Won’t Do

January 25, 2010

 

Bloggers: doing the job the mainstream media won’t do.

Today’s Inside the Beltway column at the Washington Examiner reports that in 2009, mainstream media outlets proved to be far more interested in protecting President Obama from criticism than actually reporting on his policies and decisions.

“Instead of acting as government watchdogs holding the people in power accountable, the nation’s broadcast news networks deliberately suppressed and de facto censored embarrassing scoops — at least until President Obama or Congress took action and made them impossible to ignore,” says Tim Graham of the Media Research Center, which publishes a lengthy study of the trend Monday.

“This resistance to real news extended even to newspapers like the Washington Post and the New York Times, which are supposed to be more substantive and thorough than highly paid TV news talking heads or unpaid bloggers,” Mr. Graham says. “The news was not only slow in arriving, it was fast in disappearing.”

And so it fell to the bloggers to report on news like communist Van Jones, the weird science of ClimateGate, ACORN’s assistance to pimps and prostitutes, and the cult of Mao admiration in the White House.

And now in 2010, bloggers continue to push stories that the mainstream media won’t touch, beginning with the Ellie Light Astroturf story which broke last week, and has been covered in depth so far only by blogs, whose astute readers and commenters have added reams of information to what was originally simply an odd story published in the Cleveland Plain Dealer.

An army of Davids have been busily looking for Ellie Light, and while they haven’t found her in person, they have found her identical pro-Obama letters to the editor in newspapers in 31 states; in each case Ms. Light claimed to be a resident of the circulation area of the newspaper to which she wrote.

And while they were looking for Ellie Light, they also found Mark Spivey, Lars Deerman, Jen Park, and Jan Chen, among others, all of whom have had identical letters published in various newspapers around the country.

Does this remind anyone of the almost miraculous instance of over 200 newspapers publishing articles with nearly-identical headlines within a 24-hour period that occurred last April? Yep, more astroturfing not covered by our stalwort mainstream “journalists”.

One can only wonder what other stories are being ignored by our third-rate fourth estate. What do you say we try to find out?

Stoutcat


C-Span To Obama: Put Up Or Shut Up

January 6, 2010

C-SPAN CEO Brian Lamb sent letters to leaders in the House and Senate on Dec. 30 in which he urged them to allow C-Span to cover “all important negotiations, including any conference committee meetings.”  

Lamb offered to “commit the necessary resources to covering all of the sessions LIVE and in their entirety.”

In short, he called upon the President to “walk the walk” and back up a promise he’s claimed for 2 years to do just that. In January of 2008, when then-Senator Barack Obama was mired in a campaign to grab the Democratic Nomination away from Hillary Clinton, he told America that his administration make sure health care negotiations would be available to the nation on C-Span:

“That’s what I will do in bringing all parties together, not negotiating behind closed doors, but bringing all parties together, and broadcasting those negotiations on C-SPAN so that the American people can see what the choices are.” (Emphasis mine)

It was Obama himself who, during his first month in office, announced that transparency would be a touchstone of the Obama administration:

Apparently, he forgot to notify Congress of the need for transparency. Or maybe he thought they undestood that when Nancy Pelosi told the American public when she became Speaker of the House in 2006:

“The American people voted to restore integrity and honesty in Washington, D.C., and the Democrats intend to lead the most honest, most open and most ethical Congress in history.”

So much for restoring integrity: To this date, none of the important discussions on this legislation have been covered on C-Span.  This, of course, has resulted in mysteries like “The New Louisiana Purchase”  where  Louisiana Senator Mary Landrieu was given a $300 million “deal sweetener” (which, of course, comes out of taxpayer’s pockets) in return for her support in providing the one more vote needed to have the necessary 60 votes to end cloture and move the legislation to the next level.

Without TV coverage to worry about, others strapped on their feedbags and jumped on board the “Cloture Opportunity Express” including, Senator Blanche Lincoln of Arkansas who played her part, followed by Ben Nelson who also sold his soul vote for an exclusion of  Medicaid costs (costs which would be then passed on to be covered by other states, resulting in double taxation for the same service).

The behavior of the Democratic Congress throughout the process BEGS for the oversight of transparency, and who better to provide that oversight than the American people? Who knows? Maybe even the Mainstream Media (MSM) might even pull their heads out of their collective backsides to actually provide coverage.  I know, I know… and some day pigs may fly. 

But least someone besides Fox is now calling out the President to walk-the-walk. 

And that’s a first.  

Stay tuned. Literally.

Also, Michelle Malkin has her usual excellent coverage on this.

Gerry Ashley


Apparently, Nobody Loves FoxNews

December 7, 2009

 

Except the viewers, that is.

Politico reported yesterday that National Public Radio, that bastion of open-mindedness, put pressure on their political correspondent Mara Liasson to discontinue her regular appearances as a FoxNews contributor, due to “concerns that Fox’s programming had grown more partisan”. This was way back in October, during the “FoxNews vs. White House” skirmish (which FoxNews won handily).

According to Politico, Liasson was asked to watch the cable channel for 30 days and render an opinion. After having done so, Ms. Liasson reported back that she saw “no significant change” at the network.

According to a source, Liasson was summoned in early October by NPR’s executive editor for news, Dick Meyer, and the network’s supervising senior Washington editor, Ron Elving. The NPR executives said they had concerns that Fox’s programming had grown more partisan, and they asked Liasson to spend 30 days watching the network.

 At a follow-up meeting last month, Liasson reported that she’d seen no significant change in Fox’s programming and planned to continue appearing on the network, the source said.

 NPR’s focus on Liasson’s work as a commentator on Fox’s “Special Report” and “Fox News Sunday” came at about the same time as a White House campaign launched in September to delegitimize the network by painting it as an extension of the Republican Party…

Huh, imagine that! And while denying that the White House had attempted to influence the NPR journalist, Anita Dunn, former White House Communications Director did state in an interview with NPR:

“We see Fox right now as the source and the outlet for Republican Party talking points.”

So take that denial for what it’s worth.

And NPR mouthpiece Dana Rehr chimed in:

“There’s no relationship between the White House’s criticism of Fox and any discussions about Fox that we’re having.”

Sure. And since NPR is funded partially by the government, you can imagine that they realize which side their bread is buttered on.

And it wasn’t just the White House bringing pressure to bear. Jacob Weisberg of Slate chimed in with the following:

“By appearing on Fox, reporters validate its propaganda values and help to undermine the role of legitimate news organizations,” Weisberg wrote in an Oct. 17 Newsweek column, “Why Fox News Is Un-American.” “Respectable journalists — I’m talking to you, Mara Liasson — should stop appearing on its programs.”

So Brit Hume, Brett Baier, Major Garret, Neil Cavuto, and the late Tony Snow aren’t “respectable journalists”? Some may beg to differ with that opinion.

And according to Dunn, the problem was that those unrespectable FoxNews journalists were chasing stories that the White House just didn’t want covered:

 “What was important was the idea that just because something gets aired on them didn’t mean that they — that everybody else needed to go chasing it. And I think that if you looked at some of the fake stories that were created that the mainstream media felt they needed to go chase — because, you know, for whatever reason, they were getting pressure to, quote, ‘Why aren’t you being balanced?’” she said at a conference sponsored by Bloomberg News. “I think it did — it did help people get a sense of perspective again … to the extent that, you know, people took a step back and said, ‘Hmm, am I really wanting to go chase those stories?’”

 “I kept saying to people, ‘You know, if you’re going to go chase those stories, get a second source,’” Dunn said.

Great idea. Now if only Fow would just stop covering embarrassing stories about unvetted people crashing White House events, climate science being discovered to be a massive fraud, presidential dithering about war plans, government take-overs of, well, pretty much everything, why then I’m sure the White House — and NPR — would be extremely satisfied.

Too bad.

Stoutcat


Doug Ross’ $1,000 Challenge

October 27, 2009


Yesterday, Doug Ross at Director Blue issued a challenge to those who have proclaimed that Fox News is not really a news organization. He’s offering a solid gold Kruggerand (today’s value: $1,040) to the person who can document one single lie made by a Fox News reporter. I’d have thought, given the ferocity with which liberal bloggers, newsmedia, and the White House have perpetuated this claim, that Doug’s Kruggerand would have been gone by sundown. But amazingly enough, it’s still there.

So we’re  going to help Doug out by publicizing his challenge, in the hopes that one of the many bloggers who refer to the network as “Faux News”  or the right-wing propaganda machine or whatever, will cover themselves in glory (and gold) by simply proving what they’re accusing Fox of.

Doug has four simple and reasonable rules for anyone wishing to claim the gold.

• Typos don’t qualify (“ooh, the news ticker used a ‘D’ after his name, not an ‘R’!”).

• The lie must have been repeated by at least two national Fox News reporters and left uncorrected.

• The transcripts and/or video clips must be available on the Fox News website for verification.

• The story, refuting the Fox News lie, must have been correctly reported at around the same time by news reporters from CNN and MSNBC (with links and/or transcripts from their sites).

So come on, lefties–you know who you are! Put up or shut up. And yes, Robert Gibbs, Rahm Emanual, and David Axelrod, you all can participate, too. Good luck.

Stoutcat


White House vs. Fox News: Blundering

October 24, 2009

As the war between the White House and Fox News escalates, it might be insightful to take a look back and see the path which led to Thursday’s attempt by the White House to completely shut off Fox News.

The first skirmish was back in August, when people were complaining about having received unwanted emails from the White House. Major Garrett, Fox’s White House correspondent, asked Press Secretary Robert Gibbs about why and how those people received the emails. Gibbs had no ready answer, was quick to attempt to ridicule Garrett’s question, and ultimately bypassed answering him altogether.

The next bout came earlier this month as White House Communications Director Anita Dunn commented in a New York Times interview:

“We’re going to treat them the way we would treat an opponent. As they are undertaking a war against Barack Obama and the White House, we don’t need to pretend that this is the way that legitimate news organizations behave.”

She subsequently made similar comments on the Sunday talk shows, claiming that Fox News is an arm of the Republican party:

“[Fox is] widely viewed as a part of the Republican Party: take their talking points and put them on the air, take their opposition research and put it on the air. And that’s fine. But let’s not pretend they’re a news organization like CNN is.”

Fair-minded Jake Tapper of ABC News came to Fox’s defense by questioning Robert Gibbs about the legitimacy of the attack:

Tapper: It’s escaped none of our notice that the White House has decided in the last few weeks to declare one of our sister organizations “not a news organization” and to tell the rest of us not to treat them like a news organization. Can you explain why it’s appropriate for the White House to decide that a news organization is not one –

(Crosstalk)

Gibbs: Jake, we render, we render an opinion based on some of their coverage and the fairness that, the fairness of that coverage.

Tapper: But that’s a pretty sweeping declaration that they are “not a news organization.” How are they any different from, say –

Gibbs: ABC –

Tapper: ABC. MSNBC. Univision. I mean how are they any different?

Gibbs: You and I should watch sometime around 9 o’clock tonight. Or 5 o’clock this afternoon.

Tapper: I’m not talking about their opinion programming or issues you have with certain reports. I’m talking about saying thousands of individuals who work for a media organization, do not work for a “news organization” — why is that appropriate for the White House to say?

Gibbs: That’s our opinion.

This past Sunday, Rahm Emanuel and David Axelrod upped the stakes by declaring outright that Fox News is not a news organization, and then working in veiled threats to the other networks:

The latest salvo was fired Thursday at a press pool event, during which the other major networks showed an amazing level of solidarity with Fox, perhaps because they realized the the shoe will eventually be on the other foot at some point during the next three years.

It seems like a mistake of major proportions to wage a war with an organization that buys digital ink by the barrel, so to speak. Given the political savvy and old school Chicago-style upbringing of the senior White House staff, I wonder what neophyte at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue has the naiveté to gin up such a brawl, and the clout to make it happen.

Oh yeah, that would be President Obama.

Stoutcat