Politico's Michael Calderone noted yesterday Fox News Washington managing editor Bill Sammon's broadside against the media, in which he told Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace: "I'll tell you, Chris, the mainstream media hates the Tea Party movement almost as much as it hates Sarah Palin. And the reason is simple. That's because both are a threat. Palin is a threat down the road, whether it be in 2012 or beyond. The Tea Party is a threat because it is galvanizing Republicans."
As Calderone noted, Sammon conspicuously neglected to offer any proof that the mainstream media "hate" Palin and the tea partiers, beyond the implication that they must hate them because the mainstream media are hateful liberals. Calderone also noted that Sammon was given a thorough Twitter-lashing by NBC's Chuck Todd, who expected something better from his Fox News friend.
But let's take a quick trip down memory lane, back to when a Fox News producer got a little too wrapped up in the network's embarrassingly over-the-top rah-rah coverage of the tea parties and openly whipped up a 9/12 crowd before a live report. Sammon responded by releasing a perfunctory staff memo on "standards," gently reminding his employees that they're supposed to at least pretend to act like journalists sometimes.
In that memo, Sammon told his staff not to become "part of the story;" to look at things in a "fair, impartial manner;" not to "cheerlead for one cause or another;" and to preserve their "legitimate journalistic role as detached eyewitnesses." I'd be comfortable saying that Sammon - in his own Tea Party-promoting, Palin-boosting, conservative-leaning, Obama-bashing, Bush-lionizing way -- has failed to adhere to each and every one of those precepts.
But let's be honest - Sammon never intended that he or his staff adhere to those high-minded journalistic standards, because that's simply not how the collection of political activists posing as journalists at Fox News operate.
Washington Post reporter Perry Bacon, on the health care legislation passed by the House and the Senate:
At the core of it, the Democratic plans don't do a lot for people who already have insurance, a point the Republicans will make repeatedly.
Oh, really? Here's the Washington Post's report on Senate passage:
Senate Democrats approved landmark legislation just after sunrise Christmas Eve that would transform the nation's health-care system by requiring people without insurance to obtain coverage and protecting those who have it from the most unpopular private insurance practices.
The bills' scope is vast, but Democrats are counting on consumer-friendly provisions -- including some that would take effect right away -- as selling points to a skeptical public. In the Senate bill, sick uninsured people with preexisting medical conditions could immediately obtain private coverage through state-based high-risk insurance pools, and insurers could no longer deny coverage to children under age 18 with preexisting conditions. Small businesses with fewer than 25 employees would become eligible for tax credits to purchase insurance for their workers. Adults 26 years old or younger could remain on their parents' policies.
Six months after enactment of the plan, co-payments and deductibles on preventive services, including physical examinations, immunizations, and mammograms, would be eliminated for everyone. Insurers would be barred from dropping beneficiaries when they become sick and from imposing lifetime limits on coverage.
But Bacon's claim that the legislation doesn't "do a lot for people who already have health insurance" doesn't just ignore specific provisions that directly help people who already have insurance -- it ignores the fact that they may not have that insurance forever, and it ignores the indirect benefits that stand to gain from refrom. Here's a Washington Post overview of what health care reform could mean for people who already have insurance:
You can't just ignore these things when assessing whether reform would "do a lot for people who already have health insurance."
When MoveOn ran a newspaper ad referring to General David Petraeus as "General Betray Us," the Washington Times was not amused. One Washington Times editorial said the ad "sets the new standard for bad-faith, motive-impugning argument. This is beyond the pale, sinking swiftly to the level of Klansmen and Neo-Nazis" and blasted MoveOn for suggesting Petraeus was not being honest. Another suggested MoveOn was guilty of "slandering" Petraeus. Another blasted the New York Times for running the ad:
He [New York Times public editor Clark Hoyt] also cites company policy against scurrilousness in advertising: "We do not accept opinion advertisements that are attacks of a personal nature," read the guidelines. Someone should have recognized that calling a decorated general a liar and a person likely to "Betray Us" is, in fact, an attack of a personal nature, even considering the very public circumstances.
The Washington Times was quite clear: ads calling a high-ranking military official a liar are deeply inappropriate. So imagine my surprise when this appeared in my email inbox this morning:
The email, sent by the Washington Times, was an ad from The Pray In Jesus Name Project, and it repeatedly accused Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Joint Chiefs chairman Admiral Mike Mullen of lying to the Senate Armed Services Committee:
There's much more -- more than 2,400 words in all. Here's a representative sample:
Sadly, the pro-homosexual Mullen has believed the lies of homosexual propaganda, and deceived himself, and now deceived Congress, all the while claiming he wants a more honest policy that discourages lying, when in fact Mullen actually demands homosexuals tell more lies to their military commanders when enlisting as open homosexuals. Here's a simple proof: Men who were created by God with male body parts are not women, and they lie to themselves, the world, and their commanders when they pretend to be, and act like, women. Women who were created by God with female parts are not men, and they lie to themselves, the world, and their commanders when they pretend to be, and act like, men.
Mullen's confused argument would permit men to deceptively act like women, and women to deceptively act like men, openly deceiving themselves, the world, and their military commanders, and boldface lying against God's very truth, that He created men to be men, and women to be women. But today's confusing homosexual propaganda equates "honesty" with men openly flaunting their femininity, and "truthfulness" with women openly flaunting masculinity. Who's really telling God's truth?
The Bible describes homosexual liars: "Who changed the truth of God into a lie...women did change the natural use into that which is against nature, and likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error." (Romans 1). Thank God Senator John McCain (R-AZ) denounced the Admiral's deceptive plan as destructive to the military, but Senator McCain needs your help to fight this open perversion, and protect our troops from open homosexual aggression...
CBS news interviewed homosexual Army Lt. Dan Choi, a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at Werest Point who currently faces discharge for publicly announcing he's gay.
"I think it's a very healthy thing for people to be able to tell the truth and to come to terms with who they are. I think it's a sign of maturity," Choi said, "At my very first day at West Point, I learned that the honor code says a cadet will not lie, will not tolerate those who lie," said Choi. "They didn't say that a cadet who was gay could lie whereas straight cadets didn't have to lie."
As a USAF Academy graduate knowing the honor code, I now personally confront Choi as a liar, who now openly violates his honor oath, since he deceives himself and the world, by claiming to be feminine, when God created him masculine, with a male body. LIAR. Choi should immediately be thrown out of the Army, not merely for sexual perversion, but for DISHONESTY AND LYING. The only reason he graduated West Point is that he never lied by openly claiming to be feminine while a cadet, when God created him to be masculine. THIS PROVES DON'T ASK DON'T TELL IS THE MOST HONEST POLICY, because it encourages people with sexual perversions not to openly lie about their sexual identity. But if DADT is repealed by Congress, men will claim to be women, and women will claim to be men, and the open season of dishonesty and lying will begin.
From the Fox Nation:
From Erick Erickson's Twitter feed:
Last week, using the comical James O'Keefe arrest and the childish conservative name-calling that followed Obama's SOTU, I detailed the sad state of "conservative journalism." And I wondered out loud what Bill Buckley would think of things. He, of course, was the father of modern day conservative journalism and was known for running the serious National Review, a magazine that today often seems purposefully un-serious.
Naturally, thin-skinned NR editor Jonah Goldberg threw a hissy fit, insisting I had no idea what I was talking about.
Apparently, "conservative journalism" is a paragon of accountability and responsibility. Except, of course, when it's not. And except, of course, when National Review for days refuses to correct blatantly false and defamatory allegations, even after the glaring falsehoods have been spotlighted for everyone to see.
In other words, late last week the folks at National Review neatly confirmed my point about the sad state of today's "conservative journalism." (Thanks Jonah!)
To recap: Last week, after a conservative blogger known as Jim Treacher was hit by an SUV while crossing the street in Washington, D.C., he claimed he'd been run over by a Secret Service vehicle. National Review's Greg Pollowitz then broadcast that claim, stating it as fact [emphasis added]:
Jim Treacher, a very funny blogger for Tucker Carlson's new Daily Caller website, was involved in a hit-and-run car accident yesterday — involving the Secret Service.
But it turns out the Secret Service had nothing to do with accident, and there's no evidence it was a "hit-and-run." Those facts have been known, and have been acknowledged, since last Thursday.
Yet to date, no correction has been attached to the original National Review item, which made incendiary, and false, claims against the Secret Service.
Behold, "conservative journalism."
UPDATED: Turns out that Pollowitz on Feb. 5 posted an "update" (not a correction) on the supposed "hit-and-run." The "update" though, was not attached to the original NR item.
Here's the "update" in full:
The latest is that it was not the Secret Service that ran over conservative blogger Jim Treacher, but possibly a security employee of the State Department.
UPDATE:This is looking more and more like a scandal and cover-uip with every report.
Note that Pollowitz never acknowledges that he made two sizable errors in his original post. In other words, National Review never takes responsibility for falsely accusing the Secret Service of hitting Treacher as part of a "hit-and-run"; allegations that were supported by zero facts at the time.
In fact, in the "update," there's suddenly no mention of National Review's dubious "hit-and-run" allegation. Instead, it was conveniently flushed down the memory hole. (There was no "hit-and-run." The SUV that hit Treacher stopped at the scene.)
So we'll start the clock running again: When is National Review finally going to post a correction for falsely claiming the Secret Service was invovled in a "hit-and-run" accident last week?
In a triumph of synergy, Bob Schieffer hosted NFL commissioner Roger Goodell on yesterday's Super Bowl Sunday edition of CBS' Face the Nation. Goodell's solo interview lasted about ten minutes; he was followed by a panel of CBS' NFL analysts.
Look, I love the NFL (Go Giants!). If Schieffer had contained his interview with Goodell to the amazing season the league just finished, whether he thinks Brett Favre is going to retire again (and whether it will stick this time), the NFL's next generation of stars, whether he thought the Colts made a mistake by not going for a perfect season and football immortality, and his prediction as to whether we'd see the triumphant return of the Manning Face before the day was over (answer: yes), the show would have been the perfect start to a great day of football.
But that's not what happened. Instead, Schieffer opened the interview by basically giving Goodell five minutes to spout the NFL owners' talking points about negotiations for their next contract with the NFL Players' Association:
Goodell used that time to play down the NFLPA's concern that the owners will lock them out for the 2011 season (thus making management seem more reasonable) while simultaneously suggesting that the players are receiving too high a percentage of revenues and will need to give some of that up in their next contract, because the owners need to be better recompensed for their investments in new stadiums. According to Goodell, if that happens, "everyone benefits."
Somehow, I don't think NFLPA executive director DeMaurice Smith would agree with that. Smith might have pointed out that the owners make their own decisions about whether to build massive monuments to their egos, and should suffer if they make poor investments. He could have noted that most NFL players have short careers, high risk of life-altering injury, and can be fired virtually at-will, unlike athletes in the other major American sports.
But Schieffer didn't give equal time to labor and management, he just let management give its side unanswered.
From a February 7 post at HumanEvents.com:
HUMAN EVENTS announces its first ever Al Gore Snowman contest. Our friend Amb. Fred Eckert suggested that we award a prize for the best snowman made to look like the chief poobah of global warming baloney, former Vice President Al Gore.
With Washington digging out of a near-record snowfall, it's only appropriate to (dis)honor the principal perpetrator of biggest fraud since the UN's Oil for Food scandal. (That one, after all, only cost about $30 billion. The global warming "cap and tax" legislation will cost much more.)
Once you've dug out, please take your best shot. Send us a picture of your snowman. The best one will receive $50 and an autographed copy of Jed Babbin's "In the Words of Our Enemies," the "Cliff notes of evil." Deadline is 9 am Wednesday, 10 February.
The uniform refusal of the Beltway press corps to ever mention Sarah Palin's dismal polling numbers, even when journalists are specifically handicapping her political future, continues to be sad spectacle to watch.
The latest? ABC's The Note. Here's the headline:
President Obama vs. Sarah Palin? Former Alaska Gov. Takes Aim at President:
And the lede [emphasis added]:
Good to know. Palin is feeling increasing "confident" and may even take on Obama in 2012, we learn. What ABC is careful to never mention is that recent polling shows Obama would demolish Palin in a head-to-head match-up.
And that's way the press prefers to play the Palin game. Her God-awful polling numbers, even among Republicans, must never, ever be mentioned or put in context.
Why? Because acknowledging how widely unpopular Palin actually is would then throw into question why the Beltway press corps continues to shower her with never-ending attention.
From the February 7 FoxNews.com article:
Much attention has been given to President Obama's persistent use of "I" when giving speeches to sell his administration's agenda. Is he taking responsibility -- or, as his critics say, is he still in campaign mode? FoxNews.com is tracking the president's speeches all this month and will report back after each to see whether The "I's" Have It.