I saw a press release yesterday announcing that Rep. Jim McDermott (D.-Wash) and Sen. Bernie Sanders (I.-Vt.) were introducing a single-payer healthcare bill in both houses of Congress. Unless there was a drastic change in the corporate media, this news wasn't going to be, well, news. And it hasn't been so far. There were mentions in independent outlets like Democracy Now!, GritTV and the Nation. But in the corporate media, next to nothing– except for one brief mention on CNN, thanks to Nation editor Katrina vanden Heuvel: VANDEN HEUVEL: The progressive caucus, which put out a people's budget which is [...]
During an interview on CNN last night (5/1/11) with New York firefighter and 9/11 first responder Kenny Specht: BLITZER: Did you ever give up hope, Kenny, that the U.S. would kill bin Laden? SPECHT: No, but I'd be lying to you, Wolf, I'd be lying to you if I thought about it every night. No, I didn't give up hope. That's all we had. That's all we had. It's like anything else, though. It's just sometimes we think that when it's not spoken about anymore, we wonder really what's being done. I mean, we're in a quagmire, for lack of [...]
How can you tell that your country has gone to war again? Here are at least two signs. –The same military official is on every Sunday morning chat show: Yesterday Joint Chiefs chair Mike Mullen was on CBS's Face the Nation, NBC's Meet the Press, Fox News Sunday and ABC's This Week. –You can watch TV reports about the astonishing accuracy of your weapons: OnCNN last night, courtesy of Pentagon correspondent Chris Lawrence: American Tomahawk missiles can be reprogrammed in flight. If there was a risk of civilian casualties, operators could change the target after launch. But the Navy did [...]
Froma March 2 report on CNN about the U.S. killing nine Afghan boys: MICHAEL HOLMES: I mean, just another terrible thing. We've seen this happen before. DON LEMON: Yes. Sad all the way around. He did apologize, but still. HOLMES: It does a lot of damage to the U.S. mission in Afghanistan. You don't win hearts and minds that way. LEMON: Absolutely. Thank you, Michael. I can think of bigger problem here than the"damageto the U.S. mission."
From a Broadcasting & Cable interview with new CNN hostPiers Morgan: What kind of feedback have you gotten from CNN? They're thrilled. They just tell me not to forget it's an intelligent audience. And to remain independent. And being independent right now is a really good thing. Being too far right or left right now is a bit dangerous, given whatÃƒÆ’Â¢ÃƒÂ¢”Å¡Â¬ÃƒÂ¢”Å¾Â¢s going on in the Middle East. What Americans need is facts. Iwatched some of his showlastnight. The guests were Hugh Hefner and his soon-to-be-wife. I guess that would be neither right nor left–justthe "facts."
The Washington Post had a report yesterday (2/22/11) about the military tradition of giving "challenge coins." For thoseunfamiliar, here's a quick explanation: "Challenge coins," as they are known, have become an important part of the ethos of the armed forces, where the story of service members' careers–deployments, promotions, awards–is told by the ribbons and patches on their uniforms. Traditionally, commanders hand out the coins to troops for exemplary service and morale boosting. The pointof the article is thattoo many coins are floating around,and are being offered to just about anyone. Including reporters who cover the military: When he was covering [...]
According to this post at MediaBistro (2/10/11), CNN is adding three new contributors. Two are right-wingers: Dana Loesch, a Tea Party radio host and editorof Andrew Breitbart's BigJournalism website. Will Cain is a commentator at the National Review website. And the "left"?Hisname is Cornell Belcher, a pollster and advertising/messaging consultant for various Democrats. Beyond the 2-1 numerical tilt in favor of the right, this is a goodexample of how corporate media often pick their pundits. The right-wingers are true believers, drawn from the ranks of the conservative media world. TV leftists are generally not well-known advocates for the left, familiar [...]
It's normal for the opposition party to deliver a rebuttal address to the State of the Union. Last night Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin was given that responsibility. But further-to-the-right Rep. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota delivered the "Tea Party" response to the State of the Union, which was initially scheduled to air on the Tea Party Express website. That is, until CNN decided it would air it on television. Which meant, as Washington Monthly's Steve Benenput it, CNN broadcast "the president's address, followed by a speech by a far-right Republican, and then followed by another speech by a different far-right [...]
Appearing on CNN's Reliable Sources (1/10/11), Time's Joe Klein denouncedthe "crap" on the Fox News Channel. And as many pundits are prone to do, he found the need to balance that by citing a comparable example from the "other" side: Well, that brings me to point number two…. Cable news chooses not to really deal with complicated issues with the level of complexity that they deserve. I was on Ed Schultz's show to discuss Afghanistan. I was just back from there. It is the most complicated issue imaginable. And the guy writes on a piece of paper, "Get out now," [...]
This is an actual CNN.com headline: Palin Re-Tweet Raises Questions And the actual lead paragraph: Normally, it's what Sarah Palin tweets that makes news. This time it's what she has re-tweeted. The "substance" is that Palin retweeted a comment promoting Don't Ask Don't Tell repeal. The piece ends: A Palin spokesperson was not immediately available for comment but Rebecca Mansour, a Palin aide, subsequently expressed skepticism on Twitter that the media would take notice of Palin re-tweeting "something that stands [with] gays." The media not taking notice of something that Sarah Palin said? Don't bet on it. This reminds of [...]
Remember the toppling of that Saddam Hussein statue in Baghdad (4/9/03) that signified the "end" of the Iraq War? At the time, there were critics who pointed out that the extensively televised images of a jubilant crowd of Iraqis were misleading.The sense of media excitement was unmistakable; as FAIR pointed out, the Los Angeles Times ran a headline the next day, "Iraq Is All but Won; Now What?" The incident is rehashed and examined in the New Yorker this week by Peter Maass, who was reporting from the scene that day.He states early on that both sides of the war [...]
Internal problems at CNN have jumped from the gossip pages to the New York Times. Brian Stelter reports today (12/8/10) on behind-the-scenes clashesat the new program Parker Spitzer, which is co-hosted by liberal-leaning former New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer and conservative columnist Kathleen Parker. Stelter writes: The ratings for CNN's latest experiment are stagnant. The show has been troubled by backstage tensions that have spilled out in gossip columns and have given rise to speculation–and some wishful thinking among his supporters–that CNN could make Mr. Spitzer the sole host. CNN executives and the co-hosts flatly ruled out that outcome in [...]
The ubiquitous CNN pundit on Larry King last night: KING: Could the pundits be wrong? DAVID GERGEN: Absolutely. Absolutely. It was a wonderful piece in the Wall Street Journal this lastweek by Josh Lerner. He was a really interesting young man who went back to a lot of political science and said more often than not, pundits are wrong. You know, we have a worse record than if you just did it randomly in terms of predicting the–you just flip a coin and you would come out with better predictions. Take his advice, please. But seriously: Dean Baker from CEPR [...]