During the April 14 broadcast, Fox & Friends falsely claimed that President Obama is "slashing" NASA's budget; that Buzz Aldrin is "blasting Obama" about his proposals for NASA; and that the administration's plans could mean astronauts "won't even exist down the road."
CNN gushes over Sarah Palin's policy chops:
Palin's crowd-pleasing speech combined her usual partisan zingers with a heavy dose of policy. Palin spent about half of her talk expounding on differences between Democratic and Republican energy policies, a comfortable topic for the former Alaska governor and onetime chair of the state's Oil and Gas Conservation Commission.
Yeah, she's a real energy policy savant, all right.
During an interview with Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace, Fox News contributor Sarah Palin falsely claimed that "20 percent of the US domestic supply of energy" comes from Alaska. In fact, according to the most recent data available from the Energy Information Administration, Alaska accounts for no more than 2.9 percent of total domestic energy production.
(Keep in mind, that wasn't a one-time slip-of-the-tongue: She's said similar things before.)
In her memoir, Sarah Palin claims that she vetoed an "earmark for energy conservation" Alaska could have received under the stimulus package because "acceptance of the funds required the adoption and enforcement of energy building codes." When Palin previously made a similar claim, PolitiFact.com determined that she was "wrong" because "municipalities are not forced to accept the specific standards and, given that local governments set their own codes, the feds would be satisfied if Alaska merely promoted such building codes [emphasis in original]."
In her memoir, Sarah Palin falsely suggests that "those hit hardest [by cap-and-trade] will be those who are already struggling to make ends meet" and that President Obama "has already admitted that the policy he seeks will cause our electricity bills to 'skyrocket.' " However, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office says that the poorest Americans will benefit under the cap-and-trade bill that passed in the House in June -- a bill the Obama administration supported, but which Obama was not referring to in making his "skyrocket" comment.
Palin may be "comfortable" talking about energy policy -- but she's also frequently wrong. Very wrong.
As an avid viewer of several NBC prime-time programs -- 30 Rock and The Office among them -- I've grown accustomed to the "green" themed programming that pops up each year on the network and other NBC Universal outlets as well.
The Wall Street Journal's Amy Chozick has an interesting piece out this week looking at the "eco-friendly" programming:
In just one week on NBC, the detectives on "Law and Order" investigated a cash-for-clunkers scam, a nurse on "Mercy" organized a group bike ride, Al Gore made a guest appearance on "30 Rock," and "The Office" turned Dwight Schrute into a cape-wearing superhero obsessed with recycling.
Coincidence? Hardly. NBC Universal planted these eco-friendly elements into scripted television shows to influence viewers and help sell ads.
Since fall 2007, network executives have been asking producers of almost every prime-time and daytime show to incorporate a green storyline at least once a year. The effort now takes place for a week in April and November. Starting April 19 this year, 40 NBC Universal outlets will feature some 100 hours of green-themed programming, including an episode of the Bravo reality series "Millionaire Matchmaker" in which a 39-year-old tycoon with an eco-friendly clothing line goes into a rage after his blind date orders red meat.
While the network says it tries to incorporate green programming throughout the year, the special emphasis twice a year creates an "event" that provides opportunities to advertisers, an NBC spokeswoman says. For instance, a Wal-Mart ad focusing on locally grown produce ran this past November after an episode of the medical drama "Trauma" in which emergency medic Rabbit rescues a window washer dangling precariously from a building; medics are alerted to the situation by a man sitting in his hybrid vehicle.
Behavior placement gives marketers extra incentive to advertise at a time when digital video recorders equip viewers with an unprecedented ability to skip commercials, says Jason Kanefsky, a media buyer at Havas's MPG. "You're not forcing your way into a program in any shape or form," he says. "You're just nodding your head at a program." ABC, CBS and FOX have plenty of product placement but haven't taken the step into behavior placement, network spokesmen say.
Armed with its own data showing consumers are wiling to spend more if a brand seems eco-friendly, NBC in 2007 launched "Green Week," the programming component of a larger "Green is Universal" corporate campaign. That effort brought in an estimated $20 million in advertising revenue from 20 sponsors, according to industry estimates. Many new clients, including the nutrition bar Soy Joy, came on board, NBC says. In April 2008, the network added another week of green-themed programming, when network logos go green and on-air promos tout NBC's support for the environment. But there are no obvious cues to alert viewers to the green emphasis in programming.
Chozick's story got me thinking. Wouldn't it be great if the Wall Street Journal spent 1,500 words (the length of the entire aforementioned piece) on a story delving into News Corps' efforts to go green and how its Fox News Channel spends considerable air-time attacking the science behind climate change and anything even vaguely eco-friendly?
Since the Journal is owned by News Corp, we shouldn't hold our breath. But just in case some Journal reporters happen to be reading (hello there!) I offer the following primer from a column I wrote in February:
Leading the anti-science idiocy is a host of conservative Fox News figures.
Over on the network's right-wing morning show, Fox & Friends, co-host Gretchen Carlson maintained her long-held passion for dismissing climate science, saying she wanted to talk about the "dichotomy" created by "big snowstorms" occurring while "the Obama administration [is] talking about creating a new federal office to study global warming." Co-host Steve Doocy added to the nonsense, claiming that it was "interesting, though, given the fact that the weather is so rotten right now, and people are going, 'How can there be global warming if it's snowing and it's fairly cold?' "
Interesting observation? Hardly. Idiocy worth ignoring? Absolutley.
Fox News' Sean Hannity dug in deep as well, adding to his extensive history of science denial. The conservative host found it absolutely hilarious that Commerce Secretary Gary Locke had "tunneled his way through two feet of snow in D.C." to announce the proposed creation of a new Climate Service office within the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The very next day, Hannity was back at it, saying, "Global warming, where are you? We want you back" while discussing recent winter storms.
Ironically, Rupert Murdoch -- CEO of News Corp., Fox News' parent company -- stated in 2007 that News Corp. "can set an example" and "reach our audiences" when it comes to fighting climate change, promising to make all of News Corp.'s operations carbon neutral by this year.
Perhaps it's time for Murdoch to call an all-staff meeting and discuss just how they are reaching their respective audiences on this issue, which he has said "poses clear, catastrophic threats."
There is a whole lot more where that comes from -- 247 research items, video/audio clips, blog posts and columns here at Media Matters alone.
The conservative media have mounted an all-out attack on climate science in an attempt to discredit efforts to fight man-made global warming. Media Matters for America has debunked prominent myths and falsehoods associated with this smear campaign.
Wall Street Journal columnist Bret Stephens erroneously suggested recent scientific research supports his claim that "global warming is dead." In fact, the scientists themselves have explicitly rejected such a conclusion.
From the April 2 edition of Fox News' Special Report with Bret Baier:
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From the April 2 edition of Premiere Radio Networks' The Glenn Beck Program:
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From the April 1 edition of Premiere Radio Networks' The Glenn Beck Program:
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Glenn Beck presents himself as an island of common sense in an increasingly senseless world. He says that he works hard to bring his audience an accurate portrayal of our country and its political realities. He claims to be someone who cares deeply about accuracy and facts. "I want to be wrong," he often says, brandishing a red phone (for corrections from the White House, should they arise) and lamenting that his grim views of Obama's initiatives are all too right
For this reason, it is important to consistently point out the relentless regularity with which Beck misleads his audience and engages in abject hypocrisy
On March 30, Greenpeace released a new study documenting how much money foundations operated by fossil-fuel magnates David and Charles Koch have spent to support think tanks and "research" designed to cast doubt on human-made climate change -- specifically, $48.5 million between 1997 and 2008. In recent years, that spending has accelerated, with $24.9 million distributed from 2005 to 2008. By comparison, the report points out that ExxonMobil spent a mere $24 million from 1997 to 2008 in its effort to sow public skepticism and undercut new environmental regulations
As Media Matters has detailed, for years the Koch brothers have been among the most prolific and deep-pocketed funders of the conservative movement. They sit at the top of the largest privately-owned energy company in the nation, Koch Industries, which makes its billions from oil and natural gas
But Beck's viewers have never heard the word "Koch" mentioned on his Fox show -- not once since it began on January 19, 2009. During that same time period, the phrase "special interests" -- a favorite target for Beck during monologues deploring how average Americans are being shut out of the political process -- was mentioned 121 times.
From the March 31 edition of Fox News' Special Report with Bret Baier:
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A March 30 FoxNews.com article advanced global warming skeptic Chris Horner's baseless claim that climate scientists' emails show that the U.K.'s Climatic Research Unit's (CRU) temperature data are inaccurate, and that NASA's, "by its own admission," "are in even worse shape." In fact, there is no evidence in any of the emails that show the data from either organization are wrong.
From a March 31 Associated Press article:
The first of several British investigations into the e-mails leaked from one of the world's leading climate research centers has largely vindicated the scientists involved.
The House of Commons' Science and Technology Committee said Wednesday that they'd seen no evidence to support charges that the University of East Anglia's Climatic Research Unit or its director, Phil Jones, had tampered with data or perverted the peer review process to exaggerate the threat of global warming -- two of the most serious criticisms levied against the climatologist and his colleagues.
In their report, the committee said that, as far as it was able to ascertain, "the scientific reputation of Professor Jones and CRU remains intact," adding that nothing in the more than 1,000 stolen e-mails, or the controversy kicked up by their publication, challenged scientific consensus that "global warming is happening and that it is induced by human activity."
Climate Progress reports that tropical forest researcher Simon Lewis has filed an "official complaint to the UK's Press Complaints Commission." Lewis alleged that the Sunday Times misleadingly cited him in a January 31 article titled, "UN climate panel shamed by bogus rainforest claim."
From Lewis' complaint (emphasis from Climate Progress):
Specifically, I consider this article to be materially misleading. I am the scientific expert cited in the article who was asked about the alleged "bogus rainforest claim". In short, there is no "bogus rainforest claim", the claim made by the UN panel was (and is) well-known, mainstream and defensible science, as myself and two other professional world-class rainforest experts (Professor Oliver Phillips and Professor Dan Nepstad) each told Jonathan Leake.
The Sunday Times knew that the UN panel report contained an incorrect reference relating to a sentence about the potential impacts of climate change on the Amazon rainforest, and not an error of science. Yet, the Sunday Times published inaccurate, misleading and distorted information which would lead any reasonable person to assume that the UN report had included information that was not backed by the best scientific information available at the time. Furthermore, they used highly selective reporting to imply, by omission, that a leading expert - myself - concurred with them that the IPCC had published an incorrect scientific claim. This is not the truth, and not what I told the Sunday Times, and therefore I consider the article materially misleading.
I suspect that the Sunday Times may claim that it did not state in the main body of the article that the statement in the UN report was scientifically correct or not, and that the article was about the IPCC making a mistake. Yet, according to the Editor's code this is immaterial: "Stories that are technically accurate can still be misleading or distorted leaving the reader with a false impression. Sometimes the problem is more because of what they don't say than what they do, and that -whether intentional or not -can breach the Code."
The Sunday Times contention that the IPCC had made a mistake in the reporting of scientifically credible statements was then widely re-reported, in part because the Sunday Times used my expertise to lend credibility to the assertion, due in part to the concealment of my views that the statement in question was fully in line with scientific knowledge at the time the IPCC report was written.
Following publication, I posted a very short comment on the Sunday Times website, below the article, on the afternoon of Sunday 31 January, stating that I was the expert cited in Jonathan Leake's article, that the article was misleading, as there was no 'bogus rainforest claim', and posted a link to the BBC whom I also gave an interview with, to which I gave broadly similar information as to the Sunday Times, but was accurately reported (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/8488395.stm, reproduced as Appendix 4). My posted comment was deleted from the Sunday Times website.
I also wrote a letter to the Sunday Times, emailed on Tuesday 2 February, to explain the distortion and errors in the article, for publication the following Sunday, copying in the lead author of the article, Jonathan Leake, which was neither acknowledged, nor published (see
Appendix 2 for a copy of the letter).
The deletion of my comment on the website, and failure to publish my letter would appear to be in breach of point 1) Accuracy, ii) A significant inaccuracy, misleading statement or distortion once recognised must be corrected, promptly and with due prominence, and - where appropriate - an apology published.
As I have tried to correct the record in the Sunday Times, and the Sunday Times has not cooperated, and would like the public record to be correct in this matter, (reluctantly) I ask that the PCC fully investigate the case, and the Commission then make a ruling. I hope that in the course of the investigation the Sunday Times will adhere to the highest standards of accuracy, openness and clarity in their submissions to the PCC, as the article, and accompanying editorial related to the article ('Bad science needs good scrutiny') are themselves about the importance of taking the utmost care in reporting science.
I detail the misleading claims in the article in a series of sections below.
The right-wing media's tendency to believe anything that bolsters their worldview is well-documented. Last October, for example, they rushed to trumpet a blogger's entirely unsourced claim that President Obama attacked the Founders and the Constitution in his college thesis, only to end up looking extremely foolish once it became clear that the initial blog post that started the firestorm was tagged "Satire."
So you'll probably guess where I'm going when I mention that several right-wing news sources -- including Fox News -- today jumped on an EcoEnquirer.com report that "Famed global warming activist James Schneider and a journalist friend were both found frozen to death on Saturday, about 90 miles from South Pole Station."
Yup, EcoEnquirer.com is a satire site currently fronting "Breaking News" about the successful 2027 Bali global warming conference. Other EcoEnquirer.com stories include "U.S.-Canada Border Conflict Continues" and "EPA to Mandate Reductions in Emissions from Volcanoes."
The wall of shame is below the fold:
Sarah Palin, the former half-term Governor of Alaska, has inked a deal with Discovery Communications' The Learning Channel (TLC) for her very own reality show - one that will apparently spotlight the natural wonders of her beautiful home state.
Perhaps all of the irony is lost on Palin and the folks at TLC.
I find it hilarious that Palin, who couldn't complete a full term as Alaska Governor, will be headlining a reality show produced by Mark Burnett, the creator of CBS's Survivor?
The entire concept is just as funny, perhaps unintentionally. Palin, a contributor for the climate science denying Fox News Channel, someone with an appalling record when it comes to nature and the environment in her own right... hosting a show like this? It's almost too much.
What's next for TLC? A spin-off of NBC's The Marriage Ref hosted by Tiger Woods? Jon & Kate get back together in a touching reunion show live from a Tea Party protest?
As for Palin, her record on the environment speaks for itself and it doesn't have much that's nice to say.