From the November 11 edition of CNN's New Day:
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From the November 8 edition of CNN's CNN Newsroom:
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CNN aired the pro-nuclear power film "Pandora's Promise" on November 7, which propagated three common myths about nuclear power: it suggested the environmental movement's "scare tactics" are what has inhibited nuclear power, claimed nuclear power is cheaper than renewables, and downplayed complications from nuclear waste. This led to a generally one-sided story, which has led to criticism from many reviewers.
Here's how the film "Pandora's Promise" propagated nuclear power myths:
1. Claimed Nuclear Energy Is Cheaper Than Renewable Energy
The enormous cost of building nuclear power plants is a key inhibiting factor for the energy source. Despite receiving immensely greater subsidies than renewable energy from the beginning of its development, nuclear energy is still not competitive with fossil fuels in the United States, and new wind energy is estimated to be less expensive than new nuclear generation. Yet the Breakthrough Institute's Michael Shellenberger asserted that nuclear power is "a much more economical alternative to very expensive solar panels or very expensive wind turbines that require backup power." He also dismissed renewable energy and energy efficiency, one of the cheapest ways to address climate change, as a "religion."
Renewable energy prices have actually been dropping while the costs of nuclear are on the rise -- as nuclear power has scaled up in France and the U.S., so have the costs of power plant construction. Meanwhile, solar prices have dropped 99 percent in the last quarter century, and solar and wind energies are predicted to be cost-competitive with fossil fuels -- without the use of subsidies -- by 2025.
In its latest effort to downplay the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), Fox News spent a mere 19 seconds covering its historic passage by the Senate on November 7.
Fox News largely ignored a historic vote on November 4 when the U.S. Senate voted to take up the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA), a bill that bans workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. While CNN and MSNBC covered the vote, Fox devoted half of its already-scant coverage to dismissing ENDA as a "distraction."
From the November 6 edition of CNN's The Situation Room:
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The chilling details have already faded from view, but the terror that unfolded at the Los Angeles International Airport last week is worth recalling. That's when unemployed motorcycle mechanic Paul Ciancia marched into Terminal 3, pulled out an assault weapon and opened fire. Targeting Transportation Security Administration employees, Ciancia repeatedly shot Geraldo Hernandez at point-blank range, and quickly shot two other agents and a nearby passenger.
With police in pursuit and panicked passengers fleeing the scene or taking cover in stores and restaurants, Ciancia moved towards the airport gates, still firing his gun, where he was shot four times, subdued and arrested.
Hernandez died at the scene.
Sadly, the details of the LAX shooting rampage can easily be swapped out for equally chilling accounts of other recent gun rampages all across the country. The public eruptions of gun violence where gunmen target strangers have become an unwanted hallmark of the most heavily armed country in the world.
What made Ciancia's deadly shooting anything but random was the fact that according to news reports Ciancia, perhaps thinking he'd die at the scene of his crime, brought with him a one-page, handwritten manifesto in which he described himself as a "pissed-off patriot" and affirmed he had "made a conscious decision to kill" multiple TSA employees.
He wrote that he wanted to "kill TSA and pigs" in order to "instill fear in your terrorist minds." The note included references to the Federal Reserve and "fiat currency," issues popular with anti-government conspiracists. Ciancia signed the declaration with the letters "NWO," in an apparent reference to New World Order, another conspiracy that fears a totalitarian one-world government.
Also, Ciancia's note reportedly referred to former Homeland Secretary chief Janet Napolitano as a "bull dyke" and contained the phrase "FU Janet Napolitano."
So a "pissed-off patriot" brought a .223-caliber assault rifle and a duffel bag filled with hundreds of rounds ammunition to an airport to kill federal government workers (TSA employees) and perhaps local law enforcement officers ("pigs"), and the story's met with something akin to a newsroom collective shrug and days later is virtually ignored?
Yes, the awful event was big news while it was breaking and while the news helicopters were circling near LAX. These types of deadly shootings are often widely hyped while they're producing compelling television images and the fear of the unknown permeates. But as has become the media tradition, once the latest shooting stops and the gunman is apprehended or killed, and if the victims number one or two, and especially if there is no Islamic terrorism angle, the story immediately recedes with little additional coverage or consideration for what prompted it.
A new study found that over the last 60 years the intermediate depths of the Pacific Ocean have warmed 15 times faster than in the past 10,000 years, providing more evidence that the "slowdown" in atmospheric temperature warming over the last 15 years may simply be due to the oceans storing more heat. However, this study was neglected by the same TV outlets who hyped the "slowdown" or "pause," sometimes without including this crucial context.
The study, published in Science on November 1, shows the enormous potential for oceans to act a "storehouse for heat and energy," providing support for the notion that a recent speed bump in atmospheric temperature rise in the past 15 years can be explained by excess heat from global warming being absorbed by the oceans. Study coauthor and Columbia University climate scientist Braddock Linsley explained, "We're experimenting by putting all this heat in the ocean without quite knowing how it's going to come back out and affect climate."
The recent findings were not covered by top U.S. TV outlets,* even though many of those same outlets recently focused on the "slowdown." A Media Matters study found that forty-one percent of media coverage of the the United Nations' International Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) major report mentioned the "slowdown." A CBS segment on the report, for example, focused on the speed bump, calling it an "inconvenient truth" that "the global atmosphere hasn't been warming lately," and turning to a "skepti[c]" without a climate science background to cast doubt on climate change.
Focus on the warming "pause" has received criticism as it's misleading to use a short-term time period to draw conclusions. The IPCC explained, "natural variability and short term factors" causes uncertainty, and the short time period is "very sensitive to the beginning and end dates and do not in general reflect long-term climate trends." For example, many use the start date of 1998, but this year had an abnormally strong El Nino, temporarily amplifying atmospheric temperatures. As Drew Shindell, a climate scientist at NASA told Mother Jones, "If you shift just 2 years earlier, so use 1996-2010 instead of 1998-2012, the trend is 0.14 C per decade, so slightly greater than the long-term trend."
CNN's State of the Union misleadingly hyped congressional Republican demands to interview survivors of the September 11, 2012 terrorist attacks in Benghazi, Libya. The report ignored, however, that multiple key witnesses to the attack have already testified before Congress and more are scheduled to testify in the future.
CNN and Fox News devoted massive coverage to the one-year anniversary of Superstorm Sandy, but both networks omitted any mention of climate change in their reporting despite its likely role in the extreme nature and devastation of the event.
Though it is difficult to determine just how much of Sandy's unprecedented destruction can be directly linked to climate change, climate scientists agree that higher tides produced by global warming exacerbated flooding from the storm, and hurricane severity is expected to increase as sea levels continue to rise. Unlike Fox and CNN, several MSNBC segments about the Sandy anniversary mentioned climate change. But overall, just under 8 percent of segments on the top cable news networks mentioned climate change in their anniversary coverage.
Fox News and CNN devoted approximately 52 minutes and 54 minutes, respectively, to Sandy coverage on its anniversary. Coverage centered around the devastating impacts of the storm, the subsequent complications with disaster relief funding, and efforts to rebuild the damaged coastal areas and prepare for the next natural disaster. Missing from their coverage, however, was climate change's role in worsening the impact of storms like Sandy and the fact that climate change could drastically affect coastal communities in the future.
During a segment on Fox News' Happening Now, meteorologist Janice Dean warned that "another Hurricane Sandy" could happen again "in the next decade or so" as we are heading into "an active period in terms of tropical development." She dissected the "anatomy" of Sandy, citing the angle of the storm, the storm's unnatural width, and the high tide as key factors for the storm system's extreme damage, but left out that climate change has triggered rising sea levels.
CNN's Indra Petersons also discussed the many factors that contributed to Sandy's impacts -- but excluded climate change-caused sea level rise.
From the October 31 edition of CNN's Piers Morgan Live:
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CNN and Fox News repeatedly aired Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC)'s threat to hold up presidential nominations unless witnesses to the 2012 Benghazi attacks are made available for questioning. The senator's implication -- that no witnesses have yet been questioned -- went unchallenged until CNN's Wolf Blitzer finally got Graham to admit that survivors of the attacks were in fact questioned by Congress earlier this month.
On October 28, Graham announced that he would block all executive branch nominees until survivors of the 2012 attacks on a U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya have been questioned by Congress. Graham appeared on Fox's Fox & Friends Monday morning, claiming:
GRAHAM: Fourteen months later, the people who survived the attack in Benghazi have not been made available to the U.S. Congress for oversight purposes.
Fox News continued to amplify Graham's rhetoric on Greta van Susteren's On The Record. Van Susteren noted on the October 28 edition of her show that Graham is "threatening to hold up all nominations for federal government positions ... until survivors of the Benghazi attack appear before Congress."
CNN briefly followed suit. The October 29 edition of CNN's New Day featured a report on Graham's threats from John King, who said that Graham "is saying, 'fine, you don't want to send them up to testify, I'm going to block almost every nomination if not every nomination going through the Senate."
But when Graham appeared on CNN's The Situation Room later that day, host Wolf Blitzer finally asked Graham if he was aware of any Benghazi witnesses who had been questioned by Congress. Graham responded, "It's my understanding that the survivors, the State Department personnel who survived the consulate attack, one of that group has been interviewed by the House, and the CIA agents at the annex have not been interviewed by the Intelligence Committee of the House and the Senate."
Media reports suggested that it was previously unknown that some in the individual insurance market would have to seek new health care plans due to the Affordable Care Act's (ACA) regulations. In fact, the administration announced in 2010 that some insurance policies would not be "grandfathered" in under the new law, largely due to regular turnover in the health insurance marketplace.
Cable and broadcast nightly news programs have remained completely silent on pending automatic cuts to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) -- formerly known as food stamps -- which will have negative impacts on the economy and low-income groups.
Discredited gun researcher John Lott falsely claimed that "over 99 percent" of individuals who fail background checks to obtain a gun are law-abiding citizens, despite convincing evidence that the vast majority of denied individuals are prohibited by law from owning a gun.
On his October 26 appearance on CNN's New Day Saturday, Lott made untrue charges on background checks that are characteristic of his work. He often advocates for weaker gun laws by manipulating statistics about firearms and by touting his discredited research that purports to prove looser rules concerning the carrying of guns in public reduces crime.
Lott, a contributor to FoxNews.com, will testify before an October 29 Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the controversial "Stand Your Ground" self-defense law while representing his new organization Crime Prevention Research Center (CPRC). Lott has previously mischaracterized "Stand Your Ground" in order to defend the law that played an important role in the acquittal of George Zimmerman on charges that he unlawfully killed Florida teenager Trayvon Martin. CPRC's secretary is National Rifle Association board member Ted Nugent who caused controversy by calling Martin a "dope smoking, racist gangsta wannabe," and used the Martin case to make disparaging remarks about the African-American community and endorse racial profiling.