Jan
17
2014

FAIR TV: Christie's Temper, CBS on France, Time's Clinton Cover

TIME-cover-Hillary

This week on the show: Does Chris Christie have a temper problem? Fox's Brit Hume has some thoughts. CBS covers French politics–well, mostly a French politician's sex life. And Time puts Hillary Clinton's nonexistent presidential campaign on its latest cover.  Watch: 

Sep
30
2013

Dems and GOP Agree: Independent Journalism Is Bad News

Filmmaker Charles Ferguson announced that he was no longer going to make a nonfiction film for CNN about Hillary Clinton. The reasons why he's pulling out of the project are interesting–and disturbing.

Aug
14
2013

What's the Message of Clinton's Noncampaign for the Office She Might Run for in Three Years?

Dan Balz

Hillary Clinton hasn't announced that she's running for president in 2016, and launched a campaign yet. But the Washington Post is already complaining that her nonexistent campaign for an office she may or may not seek lacks a clear message. "Clinton’s gender likely would be a significant asset," writes chief correspondent Dan Balz (8/12/13), adding: "It, however, is not a message." One has to admire the first 44 presidents of the United States, each of whom somehow managed to achieve the office without the benefit of this asset. The next day (8/13/13), Post columnist Richard Cohen picked up on Balz's […]

Aug
06
2013

Covering Weiner

abc-weiner

"We shouldn't even be wasting our time talking about Anthony Weiner," the pundits say– and then they continue to talk about him anyway.

Apr
12
2013

FAIR TV: Misremembering Thatcher, Cutting Social Security, Hillary Clinton's Hair

Hillary Clinton (cc photo: David Blumenkrantz)

Media remember Margaret Thatcher for turning around Britain's economy. But do the numbers tell a different story? Also: Barack Obama's plan to cut Social Security and Medicare is inexplicably deemed a move to the "center," and pundits are monitoring the 2016 election by paying close attention to… Hillary Clinton's haircut?

Feb
08
2013

FAIR TV: Big Papers Withhold News, Curious 'Confirmation' of Israeli Gov't Claims, 60 Minutes Plays Softball

This week on FAIR TV we take a look at the the "informal arrangement" between several media outlets–including the New York Times and the Washington Post– to not report news about a CIA drone base.

We also talk about the curious standard for "confirming" news from Israeli government officials, and we take a look at the 60 Minutes softball interview with Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.

Feb
05
2013

60 Minutes Plays Softball With Obama and Clinton

obamahillary02_620x350_620x350

At the top of his 60 Minutes interview with Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton, Steve Kroft declares, "The White House offered us 30 minutes, barely enough time to scratch the surface of their complicated personal and professional relationship, let alone discuss their policies." Apparently what that meant was, "So I didn't bother to ask them about that policy stuff."

Jun
26
2012

This Just In: Hillary Clinton's Scrunchie

Take my word for it. Diane Sawyer, ABC World News (6/21/12): And now to the ongoing master class in letting your hair down, by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.These past few months, we've been watching her swig a beer, brandish a scrunchie without apology, and makeup free and telling everybody she doesn't care what they think. And today, donning wing-tipped purple glasses at the swearing in of a new assistant secretary whose favorite color just happens to be purple. Proof that nobody does unplugged quite like the secretary of state, who is leaving office by the end of the year. […]

May
08
2012

Hillary Clinton's Iran Weapons Lie Is 'Tough Talk'

Covering Hillary Clinton's trip to India, USA Today's Richard Wolf writes (5/8/12): Fielding rapid-fire questions at a town-hall-style event in Kolkata, she denounced Iran's nuclear arms program and urged India to reduce its Iranian oil imports further. "We appreciate what has been done, and of course we want to keep the pressure on Iran," she said. When I read that I thought, "Here we go again, another outlet misstating the basic facts about the Iran debate." Then I checked the transcript of the Clinton's town hall, and that is indeed what she said, in response to a question about U.S. […]

Oct
18
2011

Inevitable Presidential Nominees, Then and Now

With all the chatter about the inevitability of Mitt Romney winning the Republican nomination, it might be useful to recall the last time the media were sending the same message about an early favorite, at least according to the national polls: Democratic Nomination Preferences Oct. 4-7, 2007 Gallup Poll Candidate % Support Hillary Clinton 47 Barack Obama 26 John Edwards 11 Bill Richardson 4 Joe Biden 2 Dennis Kucinich 1 Chris Dodd 1 Mike Gravel * Other 1 No opinion 5

Jun
13
2011

June 2007 Flashback: The Clinton/Giuliani Election

I noticed a few stories in today's USA Today (6/13/11) about supposed Republican front-runner Mitt Romney. There will be plenty more of this to come–horserace commentary based on polling that's being done in order to give journalists a reason to talk about one candidate more than another, which candidate has "momentum" and so on. It's worth remembering that the polling at this stage of the race is useless. Actually, it's probably worse than that, since the political press corps obsesses over this trivia at the expense of doing any actually useful reporting about the candidates. I wanted to find a […]

Nov
02
2010

Hillary in Cambodia

It's probably better for American political leadersthat we forgetthe U.S. bombing of Cambodia. "A massive bombing campaign in Cambodia. Anything that flies on anything that moves," was how Secretary of State Henry Kissinger put it in 1970 (NY Times, 5/27/04), reflecting Richard Nixon's concern that the large-scale aerial bombing wasn't doing enough damage. In 2000, President Bill Clinton released Air Force records on the U.S. bombing of Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam. As Taylor Owen and Ben Kiernan wrote (Walrus, 10/06): The still-incomplete database (it has several "dark" periods) reveals that from October 4, 1965, to August 15, 1973, the United […]

Aug
28
2009

WSJ 'Scumbag' Columnist Gets Predictably Slimy

Noticing that Democratic strategist Mark Penn "is the Wall Street Journal's 'Microtrend'-spotting columnist" and "also CEO of PR giant Burson-Marsteller," Gawker blogger Hamilton Nolan (8/26/09) posits that "only a scumbag would abuse the former to drum up business for the latter." Alas, "Scumbag spotted!" is Nolan's cry when writing that Penn's latest (old, and none too insightful) "Microtrend" column is about "glamping"–glamorous camping. It ran last weekend. By Monday, according to an internal email obtained by Gawker, Burson was already trying to recruit companies from the industry featured in the column as clients. Nolan goes on to remind us that […]