Category Archives: media

Ten Questions for the White House

Bill Kristol at The Weekly Standard asks Ten Questions for the White House

All good questions. And it pretty much goes without saying that the DeMSM would be camped out on every Republican office-holder’s doorstep if this incident had occurred under a Republican administration.

Aren’t there any “reporters” at all the media outlets besides Fox News who are embarrassed to so completely fail at just doing their jobs? Are they so blatantly partisan that their bias completely overcomes the most basic professionalism? Obviously, at this point these are entirely rhetorical questions.

When is Harry Reid going to resign his leadership position?

Remember back in 2002, when Senator Trent Lott said this at a birthday celebration for Strom Thurmond? —

I want to say this about my state: When Strom Thurmond ran for president, we voted for him. We’re proud of it. And if the rest of the country had followed our lead, we wouldn’t have had all these problems over all these years, either.

Mr. Lott eventually lost his position as Senate Minority Leader as a result of his comments. No need to rehash that whole controversy, but it’s clear that Lott was just engaging in some empty flattery of an old man on his birthday, not making a policy statement. But most important, there was nothing malicious about his comments. They weren’t directed at anyone with the intent to harm them.

Now contrast Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. In August, Reid had an interview with The Huffington Post

“His poor father must be so embarrassed about his son,” Reid said, in reference to George Romney’s standard-setting decision to turn over 12 years of tax returns when he ran for president in the late 1960s.

Saying he had “no problem with somebody being really, really wealthy,” Reid sat up in his chair a bit before stirring the pot further. A month or so ago, he said, a person who had invested with Bain Capital called his office.

“Harry, he didn’t pay any taxes for 10 years,” Reid recounted the person as saying.

“He didn’t pay taxes for 10 years! Now, do I know that that’s true? Well, I’m not certain,” said Reid. “But obviously he can’t release those tax returns. How would it look?

“You guys have said his wealth is $250 million,” Reid went on. “Not a chance in the world. It’s a lot more than that. I mean, you do pretty well if you don’t pay taxes for 10 years when you’re making millions and millions of dollars.”

This is obviously not at all like some happy talk at a birthday party. It’s far worse than what Lott said, because it is a deliberately malicious attack, a slander designed to harm another person’s reputation.

So this raises the question, when is Harry Reid going to give up his leadership position in the U.S. Senate? Surely all the senators who called for Lott’s head cannot stand idly by and let this slander go without any cost. If Republican Senators had some brass, and some political skill, they would make an issue of it.

And surely the mainstream media, that bastion of objectivity, cannot let such a blatant double standard go unreported. When does the media feeding frenzy against Harry Reid, demanding his resignation, begin? We didn’t see anything of the kind on the Sunday shows this morning. Maybe next week…

John Derbyshire and his critics

We’re generally opposed to the idea that a person should lose his livelihood because he says or writes something that other people find offensive, whether the offender is on the right or the left. So we don’t join the growing calls in the blogosphere for John Derbyshire to be fired by National Review for opinions he wrote on race (which were on a different website, not nationalreview.com), specifically about what he would teach his children about their black fellow Americans. National Review certainly has a right to end their relationship with Mr. Derbyshire. An opinion magazine has every right to decide what opinions it will promote, and which are out of bounds.

But all the phony outrage from left-wing blogs and liberal media outlets should be ignored by National Review and everyone else. The left is in no position to lecture anyone about their supposedly superior values, especially on the issue of race. Dividing Americans into groups, and treating people differently based on which groups they’re in, is at the core of leftist ideology and practice.

The left’s primary aim is to shut up anyone who disagrees with them, whether it’s John Derbyshire, or Rush Limbaugh, or Glenn Beck, or Sean Hannity, or whoever. Their main objection is to dissent from leftist ideology. The editor of National Review, Rich Lowry, was attacked as a bigot for simply pointing out the fact that George Zimmerman isn’t the greatest threat in the nation to young black males. Mr. Derbyshire, unfortunately for him and for the publication he writes for, has given the right’s enemies a legitimate complaint with which to attack. And of course they won’t hesitate to attempt to smear the entire conservative movement with his words.

Demonstrating that their real objection is to conservatism itself, the outrage is highly selective. Just a couple of examples from the last few weeks:

Director Spike Lee tweeted an address which he believed was that of George Zimmerman (Lee got the address wrong), implicitly encouraging mob violence and putting an innocent couple in some potential danger. And not a peep from most of those who are now so concerned about what Mr. Derbyshire wrote.

Al Sharpton routinely says things worse than anything Derbyshire said, and has for years. Sharpton has recently been working to create another Freddy’s Fashion Mart or Crown Heights incident in Florida – and he was an invited guest to the White House this week, and has his own show on MSNBC. And again, you’ll have to look pretty hard to find any criticism of the racist Rev. Al from the left, let alone any effort to have him removed from his television program.

And of course the left-wing propagandists at Media Matters, the Center for American Progress, and Mumia Abu Jamal supporter Van Jones’ group Color of Change aren’t pushing boycotts of Bill Maher.

None of this is to defend what Mr. Derbyshire wrote. We believe it’s a core conservative value to approach people as individuals, and judge them on their own merits, and skin color has nothing to do with anyone’s value as a human being. Liberals are the ones who believe otherwise, who believe in judging people based on their group identity, including the color of their skin.

The issue here is one of gross hypocrisy. Liberals are simply in no position to lecture anyone about their values when it comes to race or anything else.

UPDATE: National Review has ended their relationship with Derbyshire.

Democrats pushing social issues, not Republicans

The Democrats often assert that Republicans keep bringing up divisive social issues, ignoring the economy and jobs. And of course the establishment liberal media (the “DeMSM”) help their party to spread this false narrative.

Senator Charles Schumer was on ABC News This Week yesterday:

…Democrats are focused like a laser on jobs, the economy, and the middle class. Republicans, realizing that that’s not their strong suit, are going off on these other things, women’s issues and women’s health and contraception.

But of course that isn’t true. It was the Democrats who brought up contraception and made it an issue. It was the Obama Administration which chose to put the promise of a free contraceptive giveaway above the 1st Amendment guarantee of religious liberty.

Host George Stephanopoulos digressed by asking Senator Schumer about Bill Maher, but didn’t do anything to correct Schumer’s false premise, that Republicans had brought up the contraception issue. (Schumer didn’t express any opposition to Maher’s obscene misogyny, and said Obama’s super PAC shouldn’t return Maher’s million dollar donation. This tells us a lot about where their real values lie).

And also yesterday on Meet the Press, host David Gregory introduced a segment as a debate between social issues and economic issues:

And coming up here, a preview of the debate of the big issues in the fall campaign. Will social issues trump talk of the economy and job creation? Two of the nation’s top governors weigh in. Head of the Democratic Governors Association, Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley and head of the Republican Governors Association, Virginia Governor and Romney supporter Bob McDonnell.

Gregory opened with a question about the economy, asking (hopefully) if the improving job creation numbers over the past several months would help President Obama’s campaign. Governor O’Malley diverted the conversation to social issues:

GOV. O’MALLEY: …instead, under Governor Romney’s leadership, they ranked 47th out of 50 states in job creation. So I think you’re going to have a pretty clear contrast here. And if you look at the presidential campaign, I mean, let’s be honest, there’s been a lot more time spent pandering to the extreme right wing ideologues of the new Republican Party than has been spent talking about jobs and the economy. Rick Santorum in the Arizona debate mentioned the word jobs not once, not a single time. So I believe that the president is looking strong, is strong, is focused on the economy, and that’s going to carry him through this election.

“Pandering to the extreme right wing ideologues”. So much for Democrats’ civility.

Governor McDonnell tried to get back to the economy:

GOV. McDONNELL: Well, I think that’s a manufactured issue. I think the Democrats and this president are trying to do everything they can to take the issue off of jobs and the economy, debt, deficit, energy, because they don’t have a plan. I would say that Republican governors have had something to do with that [the lower unemployment rate]. The seven out of the 10 states with the lowest unemployment rates are governed by Republican governors. …

David Gregory continued trying to steer the conversation back to social issues, while the Republican governor tried to stay focused on the economy:

MR. GREGORY: Let’s talk about social issues because in some cases in the, in the Republican race, this has overshadowed talk about the economy and you, in fact, in Virginia, have been at the center of some of this. You backed an abortion bill initially that included a very invasive procedure as part of an ultrasound [False. The bill didn’t require an invasive procedure, it merely required an ultrasound. We can always count on David Gregory to repeat Democratic Party talking points.] that the state would have required and then you backed off of that. Were you wrong to support that initially or did you simply back off because the political heat got turned up the way it did?

GOV. McDONNELL: No, I think–listen, that was one bill out of a thousand that we passed that was all focused on jobs and economic development, education, and a number of other things. That’s my agenda is restoring the American dream for people in Virginia. We’ve got the lowest unemployment rate in the Southeast and surpluses for two years. That’s what I’m doing. You know, this bill allows Virginia to join about 20 other–23 other states that have an ultrasound procedure.

MR. GREGORY: It’s actually only about seven that have these kind of procedures.

GOV. McDONNELL: No, but there’s 23 that require a, a, a woman to have an opportunity to see an ultrasound.

Gregory spent several more minutes pressing McDonnell on the issue, before turning to Democratic governor O’Malley:

MR. GREGORY: Do you think the sense that certainly Democrats are talking about and that some women feel that there is a growing assault on reproductive rights, can it become a more central issue in the race? Or is that going to become a side issue, as the governor says?

GOV. O’MALLEY: Well, I think the central issue in this race is creating jobs and expanding opportunity. I think these cultural–don’t like to use the term wars–these cultural divisive wedge issues, these sort of roll back of women’s rights, roll back of women’s access to contraception and other health, roll back of voting rights, roll back of workers rights, all of these things that take us back are not strengthening our economy and creating jobs. And I think that people start to see a pattern, David, emerging in states like Wisconsin, states like Ohio, states like Florida.

MR. GREGORY: Mm-hmm.

GOV. O’MALLEY: And sadly, recently even in Virginia, where these cultural issues are crowding out the things that really should concern us most.

GOV. O’MALLEY: Seven, seven out of 10–seven out of the best 10 states for creating 21st century jobs in science and technology, are governed by Democratic governors. Now Virginia, credit where credit is due, is one of those top states. The question is whether we’re making the right investments in jobs, education, more affordable college, that will keep Virginia in that top ranking in the future. Maryland’s there. We’re making college more affordable, we’re creating jobs at twice the rate of Virginia. And these cultural battles that drive people apart are not helpful to driving us forward.

MR. GREGORY: Do you think your counterpart here in Virginia would be a good running mate for Romney or would you cast him as an extremist?

But Governor O’Malley and his Democratic party comrades in the Maryland state legislature have in fact not been focusing on the economy. Governor O’Malley just signed into law a bill passed by the Democratic majority of the legislature which changed the definition of marriage in the state to include same-sex unions. They’ve spent a lot of time debating the issue.

And David Gregory, who had plenty of time to press the Republican Governor of Virginia on social issues, never even bothered to bring it up. A law requiring a major social change in the state of Maryland was signed by the Democratic governor just this month, and Mr. Gregory didn’t bother to bring it up, in a discussion about social issues.

Why didn’t David Gregory bring it up? Why didn’t he ask Mr. McDonnell if Mr. O’Malley is an “extremist”? These are of course rhetorical questions, because the discussion was premised on the idea that Republicans are the ones focusing on social issues, and Mr. O’Malley’s record doesn’t fit that narrative. So Gregory didn’t bring it up. An unbiased, professional journalist would not have made such an obvious omission.

Marriage: Appeals court to decide fate of Prop. 8 on Tuesday

Here’s a good example of liberal bias at work in news media coverage of a controversial issue, from the Los Angeles Times:

A federal appeals court is expected to rule Tuesday on the constitutionality of Proposition 8, the 2008 ballot measure that banned gay marriage in California.

But this is loaded language. It isn’t neutral reporting, it takes a side on the issue. Proposition 8 did not “ban gay marriage”. Proposition 8 defined marriage in the California state constitution as it has always been defined in state law, as male-female, in response to an activist court decision overturning that traditional definition. It didn’t ban anyone from marrying according to that definition.

The media do this kind of thing all the time, intentionally or not, using the language of the left in their reporting of various issues. If the editors of the Los Angeles Times want to support repeal of Proposition 8, they should say so on their Editorial page, not in their supposed news coverage.

Cain on Romney and religion

Herman Cain on the latest media-generated controversy over Mitt Romney’s religious views (via NRO):

Herman Cain refused to wade into the controversy over whether it is accurate to call Mitt Romney a Christian or not.

“I’m not running for theologian in chief,” he said on CNN’s State of the Union this morning. “I’m a lifelong Christian and what that means is one of my guiding principles for the decisions I make is I start with do the right thing. I’m not getting into that controversy. He’s a Mormon. That much I know. I’m not going to do an analysis of Mormonism vs. Christianity for the sake of answering that.”

Funny, the media seem to be much more concerned with this type of question than they were in the last presidential election cycle when Racist Reverend Wright’s parishioner was running.

Cain answered the question the way it should be answered, which is not to answer it. Theological differences are as old as religion. But they have no place in a political campaign. Values are a separate issue. It matters greatly if a candidate for office accepts or rejects America’s traditional Judeo-Christian values. But people with very different theological views can and do advocate the right values. All the candidates should follow Cain’s lead and refuse to play the media’s game.

On a related note, it was unfortunate to hear some conservatives, most notably William Bennett, attribute what is a legitimate theological debate to bigotry. Perhaps he meant only that it was bigotry in the context of whether to support a political candidate. In any case, theological differences are not bigotry. Bennett should know better than to use that kind of left-wing “argumentation” style.

Washington Post offers press release for White House “deficit plan”

In the “news” item from the Washington Post about President Obama’s latest iteration of his same old “deficit reduction” plan, the hackery begins right up top in the title: “Obama’s debt-reduction plan: $3 trillion in savings, half from new tax revenue“.

And the item begins:

President Obama will announce a proposal on Monday to tame the nation’s rocketing federal debt, calling for $1.5 trillion in new revenue as part of a plan to find more than $3 trillion in budget savings over a decade, senior administration officials said.

….

About half of the tax savings would come from the expiration next year of the George W. Bush administration tax cuts for the wealthy.

But of course, raising taxes is not “savings”. The whole thing is written using Democratic Party language and talking points – “tax savings”, “tax cuts for the wealthy”, etc. The only thing missing is the official DNC logo at the top of the page.

Breaking News from 1517: Lutheran Church “Anti-Catholic”

This story from James Oliphant at the Los Angeles Times is just hilarious. It just shows such a glaring ignorance of basic Christian history and theology he should be embarrassed. But he obviously doesn’t know enough to be embarrassed.

Taking a page from President Obama’s political playbook, Michele Bachmann has formally left a church in Minnesota accused of holding anti-Catholic views.

Wait, hold on a minute! The Lutheran Church is “anti-Catholic”? Hasn’t this been the case since, oh, 1517 or so? Has Oliphant ever heard of Martin Luther? Churches have theological disagreements. To talk about this fact as if it can’t be based on anything more than some invidious prejudice is ridiculous. It only demonstrates the ignorance and/or prejudice of the writer. Liberals always preach “diversity”, but then they portray any disagreement as bias or prejudice.

The controversy began when someone doing opposition research on Michele Bachmann read a statement on the website of her former church in Minnesota.

Earlier this week, the Atlantic reported that that the synod’s website contains a statement that equates the pope with the antichrist. The writer, Joshua Green, also spoke with [Joel] Hochmuth [a spokesman for the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod], who explained the statement thusly:

“Some people have this vision of a little devil running around with horns and red pointy ears. (Martin) Luther was clear that by ‘antichrist’ [he meant] anybody who puts himself up in place of Christ. Luther never bought the idea of the Pope being God’s voice in today’s world. He believed Scripture is God’s word.”

The comparison of the Protestant Reformation to the rants of Obama’s racist pastor Jeremiah Wright is also a nice touch.

Obama left his church, Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, in May 2008 after incendiary sermons by the Rev. Jeremiah Wright surfaced in the heat of his bitter presidential fight with then-Sen. Hillary Clinton

Can Oliphant really not see any difference between a centuries-old theological disagreement and Wright’s contemporary racist, anti-American rants?

It’s pretty typical for secular liberal journalists to be ignorant of religion, this is just one glaring example out of many.

Obama Supports, Opposes “Same-Sex Marriage” at Same Time, Lapdog Press Goes Along

It’s hard to choose which is more ridiculous, President Obama’s continuing disingenuous double-talk regarding so-called “same-sex marriage”, or the willingness of so-called “journalists” to go along with the game.

After Obama’s press conference today, we get this bizarre abuse of language in a headline from the Los Angeles Times: Obama praises New York on same-sex marriage [sic] but won’t endorse it

The story doesn’t do much to clarify the difference between “praise” and “endorse”:

The president has been on the record as opposing same-sex marriage [sic], but Wednesday, he attempted, as he has previously, to attempt to carefully navigate a middle position. At a news conference at the White House East Room, he lauded the recent move by the New York Legislature to legalize the practice, calling it “a good thing.”

So the president himself, out of his own mouth, calls it “a good thing”, but he doesn’t endorse it. Crystal clear. The Times doesn’t really explain what the “middle position” is between endorsing and praising that Obama attempted to attempt to carefully navigate. Maybe “praise” means he’s for it (but not really, bigoted hick voters of middle America, wink, wink), and “endorse” means he marries a man himself. What, he’s already married, you say? Stop being so judgmental – what are you, the Taliban?

Maybe the Times will clarify further in their next Obama campaign press release.

The L.A. Times concludes:

But as his reelection campaign heats up, Obama gave no sign that he will move toward openly embracing same-sex marriage [sic], a priority for gay and lesbian advocates.

Really? For this supposedly “professional journalist”, saying the redefinition of marriage “is a good thing” gives no sign, none at all, that Obama openly embraces the redefinition?

It cannot be that journalists are that gullible. They’re obviously, dare we say “openly”, participating in a transparent ruse to try to fool some voters going into the next campaign.

The Times piece ends with a real confidence-builder from the president:

“I’ll keep giving you the same answer until I give you a different one,” he told one reporter.

obama - words are cheap

Newt Gingrich on Meet the Press

Newt Gingrich appeared on Meet the Press this morning, and on a few points it sounded a bit like he’s running in the Democratic Party primary.

Gingrich came out opposed to the Republican plan to reform Medicare, instead essentially signing on for the Democrats’ call to wring some waste and fraud out of the current system. He also handed the Democrats an easy talking point: “Even Newt Gingrich thinks the Republican agenda to destroy Medicare and kill seniors is radical and extreme!”

He also came out in favor of an individual federal mandate to buy health insurance. He tried to distinguish his mandate from the Obama mandate, but with little success.

Sandbagging your fellow Republicans in congress and offering tacit support for a key (unconstitutional) component of Obamacare is a very strange way to begin a run in a Republican primary. Not a strong start.

In a better moment, Gingrich responded with appropriate indignation when MTP host David Gregory made a ridiculous charge (he likely just read it on some lefty blog somewhere) of “coded” racism, regarding Gingrich’s reference to Obama as the “food stamp president”.

MR. GREGORY: First of all, you gave a speech in Georgia with language a lot of people think could be coded racially-tinged language, calling the president, the first black president, a food stamp president.

REP. GINGRICH: Oh, come on, David.

MR. GREGORY: What did you mean? What was the point?

REP. GINGRICH: That’s, that’s bizarre. That–this kind of automatic reference to racism, this is the president of the United States. The president of the United States has to be held accountable. Now, the idea that–and what I said is factually true. Forty-seven million Americans are on food stamps. One out of every six Americans is on food stamps. And to hide behind the charge of racism? I have–I have never said anything about President Obama which is racist.

Many on the left see the racist bogeyman in any criticism of the president, or cynically and maliciously try to score political points with the charge. Good for Newt for fighting back and knocking down the insinuation.

UPDATE(via Hot Air): A spokesman for Rep. Paul Ryan responds to the hit on his Medicare reform proposal:

“The solutions offered by Chairman Ryan and advanced by House Republicans make no changes to Medicare for those in and near retirement, while offering a strengthened, personalized program that future generations can count on when they retire,” Sweeney says. “Far from claims of radicalism, the gradual, common-sense Medicare reforms ensure that no senior will be forced to reorganize their lives because of government’s mistakes. The most ‘radical’ course of action on Medicare is continue to cling to the unsustainable status quo.”

“Serious leaders,” he adds, without naming names, “owe seniors specific solutions to avert Medicare’s looming collapse.”