Sep
23
2014

Civilization-Threatening Crises? Nope, Can't Think of Any

Stop being sad (Allie Brosh)

David Brooks thinks you're just dwelling on the negative in the news–and he's written a New York Times column, headlined "Snap Out of It," to set you straight.

Sep
23
2014

Reluctant Warrior Bombs Yet Another Country

Obama cartoon (Peter Brookes)

Can a president who has launched military strikes on seven countries really be called a 'reluctant warrior?'

Jul
02
2014

Highly Placed Media Racists

Nicholas Wade

Nicholas Wade was a leading New York Times science writer for three decades. He left the paper weeks after the May publication of his book, A Troublesome Inheritance: Genes, Race and Human History, a book many reviewers say is a full-throated defense of "scientific racism."

Apr
25
2014

FAIR TV: NYT's Russia Walkback, Obama's 'Manhood,' Innocent Drones

FAIRTV042514

The New York Times has a big exclusive on Russia–and quietly walked it back a few days later. David Brooks offers his thoughts on the Mideast and Obama's "manhood," CNN finds a guest who says innocent civilians don't die in drone strikes.

Apr
22
2014

Obama's 'Manhood Problem'–and Media's Humanity Problem

David Brooks says the Middle East thinks Obama has a "manhood" problem.

Feb
24
2014

Pundits Bemoan Failure to Cut Social Security

MTP-davidbrooks

Media comments after the Obama administration backed off attempts to cut Social Security benefits exhibited a curious notion about where the "middle" is and what "majority support" means.

Dec
02
2013

Obamacare as a 'Big Government' Failure

mtp-mitchell

Pundits' discussions of the Affordable Care Act rollout assumes that the law represents some kind of "activist government" intervention to disrupt the normally smooth workings of the private sector. But that is neither the intent nor the effect of the law.

Jul
05
2013

David Brooks Applies His Mental Equipment to the Egypt Coup

David Brooks

"Islamists…lack the mental equipment to govern," New York Times columnist David Brooks writes today (7/5/13). "Incompetence is built into the intellectual DNA of radical Islam." Now, Brooks has been known to cite eugenicist¬† Steve Sailer on "white fertility rates" (12/7/04; Extra!, 4/05).¬† But let's give him the benefit of the doubt and assume that rather than making a racist argument, he's simply appearing to be racist as a metaphor (as when he wrote recently that interracial marriage was producing a "nation of mutts"–6/27/13). So he's saying, then, that Islamists govern as if they were biologically inferior. And his evidence for […]

Jul
01
2013

Press Latched On to Snowden's 'Dropout' Status

Megyn Kelly and Chris Stirewalt

Edward Snowden has been characterized as many things in recent weeks, but journalists' discounting him as a "high-school dropout" speaks volumes about media portrayals of education.

Apr
15
2013

Cutting Social Security on PBS–From Left to Right

shields-brooks

On the PBS NewsHour (4/12/13), the left/right debating duo of Mark Shields and David Brooks took up the issue of Social Security and "chained CPI"–and found that they didn't have a lot to debate on the virtues of Barack Obama's benefits-cutting plan.

Feb
22
2013

Sometimes David Brooks Gets So Mad He Can't Write Straight

Incredible Hulk at Madame Tussaud's (Photo: Abi Skipp)

When David Brooks writes that Obama "declines to come up with a proposal" other than raising taxes on the rich, and in reality he has proposed a plan, that merits a correction, right? Maybe. But when you're a New York Times columnist, apparently you get to play by a different rulebook.

Jan
14
2013

Jack Lew, One More Anti-Business Obama Appointee

lew-obama

Republicans and various right-wing commentators have had a thing for talking about the supposedly "anti-business" tilt of the Obama administration. It's never made much sense–and it doesn't make any more sense now that pundits are reacting to news that Obama will tap his current chief of staff Jack Lew to be his next Treasury secretary.

Nov
02
2012

Politico Makes You Glad Election Is Almost Over

Nate Silver

The gossipy, horse race-obsessed outlet¬†Politico ran a story on October 29 about the credibility of polling expert Nate Silver, whose 538 blog at the New York Times is a must-read for people interested in election forecasting. What Silver does isn't, on one level, all that tricky–his model combines national and state polls and generates probabilities about election outcomes. This model finds it highly likely that Barack Obama will win the election. It's probability, not a crystal ball or a bet. Politico's Dylan Byers notes that Silver's model says this "even as the polls have [Romney] almost neck-and-neck with the incumbent." […]