Sep
10
2013

Barrett Brown Can't Talk About Why the Government Wants to Jail Him for a Century

Barrett Brown

In the US government's campaign against journalists, Barret Brown is one of the lesser-known victims. And now even less will be forthcoming about his story, as the Texas-based writer, satirist and Internet activist is under a federal court gag order, forbidden to talk about his case.

Jul
25
2013

Huge Servings of Stupid Royal Baby Coverage

Victoria Arbiter on CNN (screengrab by HuffPost)

Last week, news of the anticipation of the royal baby eclipsed much other news in the U.S., but it gave no indication of the level of stupid that was to come with the kid's actual birth.

Jul
19
2013

Former NSA Chief Smears Glenn Greenwald

Hayden

"The Guardian newspaper's Glenn Greenwald," writes former NSA director Michael Hayden today in a CNN op-ed, is "more deserving of the Justice Department's characterization of a co-conspirator than Fox's James Rosen ever was." Hayden's smear came in a column in which he argues that Edward Snowden, whose story Greenwald has been telling in the Guardian, "will likely prove to be the most costly leaker of American secrets in the history of the Republic." Those thuggish words are particularly disturbing coming from a figure who is, as CNN's editor's note at the top of the column explains, still tied to military […]

Jun
18
2013

Spinning Surveillance via Discredited NSA Talking Points

Barack Obama on Charlie Rose

What might it say about the depth of NSA's record of success stories that, even after its prime exhibit is debunked, the White House is still retailing the story, the second time around with muddled language?

May
10
2013

L.A. Times' Distorted Report on USAID

Evo Morales in the L.A. Times

"USAID Develops a Bad Reputation Among Some Foreign Leaders," read a May 7 Los Angeles Times headline, followed by the subhead: The U.S. Agency for International Development doesn't just offer aid to the poor, it also promotes democracy, which is seen as meddlesome or even subversive. Fighting poverty and spreading democracy–what's not to like? And so, the report seems to suggest, there's something a little off about foreign leaders, nine in recent years, who've expelled the agency.  Why else would Bolivian President Evo Morales expel an anti-poverty group from his "impoverished" country, if he wasn't just a little bit crazy? […]

May
02
2013

NYT's Beat Sweetener on New Interior Secretary

Interior Secretary Sally Jewell (cc photo: Jack Storms/Burke Museum)

"Beat sweetener" was written all over John Broder's April 30 New York Times profile of new Interior Secretary Sally Jewell, "a woman of untamed energy, competitiveness and confidence in the boardroom and on a mountain trail."

Apr
26
2013

Texas Fertilizer Plant Disaster: Little Coverage, Much of It Wrong

West Fertilizer Co. plant

The West Fertilizer Co. explosion last week was largely obscured by blanket coverage of the Boston Marathon bombing. More than that, says legendary EPA whistleblower Hugh Kaufman, a guest on this week's CounterSpin, what coverage there was often obscured the real story.

Apr
12
2013

Jeff Cohen on Media Missing the Costs of Militarism

Protester: I Want Education Not War (United for Justice With Peace)

"Today there's an elephant in the room: a huge, yet ignored, issue that largely explains why Social Security is now on the chopping block…. That problem is U.S. militarism and perpetual war."

Apr
05
2013

Keeping Yet Another Government Secret

The National Clandestine Service: Too secret to reveal the name of its acting chief--but not too secret to be looking for student interns.

The compelling interest in the public knowing that a high-ranking public official has taken part in highly controversial and perhaps even illegal actions, in the view of these news outlets, is apparently outweighed by their duty, as they see it, to keep the government's secrets.

Mar
27
2013

How 'Unlikely' Is Mark Sanford's Comeback Really?

Mark Sanford

The journalists amazed by Mark Sanford's comeback make the mistake of assuming that since the GOP spends so much time preaching "family values" and "social conservatism," Republican pols who violate these preachments must pay a greater price than less moralistic Democrats.

Mar
20
2013

Bill Maher Urges Vilification of Bill Maher

Bill Maher

On his last HBO show, Bill Maher complained about how much he and his wealthy cohort pay in taxes. But he's unlikely to get much sympathy from the 2010 version of Bill Maher.

Feb
08
2013

Bill O’Reilly and the 'Epidemic of Disrespect'

Bill O'Reilly (photo: Justin Hoch/Hudson Union Society)

Bill O’Reilly– whose network is known on-air fantasies about murdering public figures, jokes about the assassination of the president, and is the only network named by more than one spree killer as having helped to inspire their murderous designs–is worried that the country is becoming too disrespectful.

Jan
09
2013

George Washington on Guns…According to Sean Hannity

To make the case that gun ownership was not just a right, but something akin to a sacrament, Hannity quoted George Washington: "'Rifles and pistols are equally indispensable.' 'They deserve a place of honor with all that's good.'" The quote is a hoax, and a well-known one.