Oct
22
2009

Feeding the World: The Expert's Burden

In today's New York Times article, "Experts Worry as Population and Hunger Grow," there's some Green Revolution mythology propagated about how the policies "staved off famines affecting millions." As has been pointed out, though food production did increase, hunger actually increased as well just about everywhere affected by the Green Revolution; the reason the overall numbers showed hunger down was because China, as part of its own revolution including land reform, managed to reduce hunger dramatically. But the overall framing of the article is what bothers me more–the idea that it's "scientists and development experts" who are responsible for "feeding […]

Oct
22
2009

Limbaugh's Selective Outrage Over False Quotations

John K. Wilson (Obamapolitics, 10/16/09) on Rush Limbaugh and fake quotes: When it came to people repeating false quotes about Limbaugh that Limbaugh himself had never bothered to deny, Limbaugh was outraged: "we are in the process behind the scenes working to get apologies and retractions with the force of legal action against every journalist who has published these entirely fabricated quotes about me, slavery, and James Earl Ray." But when it came to his own false quotes, Limbaugh has been entirely indifferent to fake quotes. In one of his books, Limbaugh claimed to be quoting James Madison: "We have […]

Oct
22
2009

WP Poll: Public Evenly Split on Afghan Escalation?

"U.S. Deeply Split on Troop Increase for Afghan War" is the headline on the Washington Post's October 21 report about its latest polling on Afghanistan. The paper reports that "Americans are evenly and deeply divided" over sending 40,000 extra troops: "47 percent of those polled favor the buildup, while 49 percent oppose it." If you've followed polling on this question, these results are striking–most recent surveys show the public is deeply troubled by the war and opposed to sending more troops. The most recent CNN survey (10/16-18/09), to take one example, found 39 percent support for sending more troops, and […]

Oct
22
2009

Breaking ACORN News!!!

Living up to the ridiculous notion that every right-wing slam on ACORN demands coverage in the "liberal media," the Washington Post ("Duo Release Another Video of Their Meeting With ACORN Worker," 10/22/09) runs a storyon the latest from the right-wing activists whose undercover videos shot at local ACORN offices got all the attention in the first place. So what's the news? Well, apparently the duo appeared at the National Press Club to unveil a video of themselves at a Philadelphia ACORN office, where nothing much happened. The video they presented did not include any of the audio from ACORN workers–they […]