Oct
05
2011

Erin Burnett Hears the Critics–But Still Misses the Point

Last night (10/4/11) CNN host Erin Burnett noted that her fact check of the Occupy Wall Street protests had drawn some criticism. But she still doesn't seem to get it. "Well, our story got noted documentarian Michael Moore, who watched the show last night," she reported before playing a video response from Moore: I just don't understand that piece, you know, that new show. These companies, these banks, Goldman Sachs up here, they took billions and billions of dollars of citizens' money, and they ask us to pay for their crime and we're supposed to be OK because some of […]

Oct
04
2011

Whitewashing the Blackout of Occupy Wall Street

I checked out a post from the Web-based publication Capital (9/28/11) about media coverage of the Occupy Wall Street protest because CJR (9/29/11) told me it was a "smart post" that "crunched the numbers" and showed "how there really is no media blackout." I have to say I would have thought CJR would have higher standards when it came to crunching media numbers. Capital's Joe Pompeo states his thesis early on: The idea that there is a media blackout has gained appeal on the left with support from Michael Moore and Keith Olbermann, who said on the September 21 edition […]

Sep
21
2011

Michael Moore on Progressive Protests and Media Blackouts

Michael Moore on the Rachel Maddow show on MSNBC (9/19/11): Or, if you prefer reading: But last week when Wolf Blitzer and CNN had that debate, the CNN/Tea Party Express debate, and Wolf sat there and called them his partners–I just thought, this was amazing, because would you ever see the CNN nurses union debate or the CNN teachers union debate? Because I think there are a few more teachers and nurses in this country than there are members of the Tea Party. But we'll never see that in the mainstream media. And liberal organizations which have many more members […]

Dec
20
2010

Michael Moore's Not-at-All Banned Movie

One recently released WikiLeaks cable stated that Cuban officials had banned Michael Moore's healthcare documentary Sicko. Critics of Moore's work pounced, delighted thata film that spent timepointingoutthat Cuba's national system has some merits would be banned in thatcountry. The problem is that… well, it wasn't.Which is something that anyone could have known if they'd done a moment of factchecking.Like Michael Moore did (though, to be fair, he probably knew this stuff without having to check): Sounds convincing, eh?! There's only one problem–Sicko had just been playing in Cuban theaters. Then the entire nation of Cuba was shown the film on […]

Sep
17
2010

Michael Moore Remembers How the Iraq War Began

With all the talk of the Iraq War winding down (never mind the ongoing violence, the U.S.troops still fighting, or the continuing U.S. casualties), filmmaker Michael Moore makesan important point about how the war started–specifically, that it happened not despite but because of the way the "liberal media" behaved: But most importantly, they made this war (and its public support) happen because Bush & Co. had brilliantly conned the New York Times into running a bunch of phony front-page stories about how Saddam Hussein had all these "weapons of mass destruction." The administration gleefully fed this false information not to […]

Mar
31
2010

Beck: No to Censoring Foes, Yes to Violent Death

Appearing on the O'Reilly Factor (3/25/10) to discuss being named by Joy Behar as one of the media figures the View panelist (3/22/10) says are inspiring hate among Tea Party activists ("There is a difference between free speech and hate speech, and we've been listening to it from Beck and Limbaugh now. And these people are all juiced up by these two. That's what's happening"), Glenn Beck attempted to demonstrate his tolerance for his political foes in the following exchange: BECK: Have you or I ever said Michael Moore shouldn't be allowed to make a movie? O'REILLY: No. BECK: Michael […]

Dec
07
2009

Dana Milbank and the Church of Obama

The Washington Post's Dana Milbank (12/6/09) thinks there's something wrong with left-wing critics of Barack Obama.As his lead put it: Some parishioners in the Church of Obama discovered last week that their spiritual leader is a false prophet. Milbank startswith Michael Moore, who wrote an open letter urging Obama not to escalate the Afghanistan war.This makes no sense to Milbank, since Obama never said he'd withdraw troops.Well, yes. I suspect many of Obama's critics–maybeeven Michael Moore–are aware of that.Moore also supports single-payer healthcare, and wishes Obama would too. Does that mean that continuing that advocacy with Obama in the White […]

Oct
06
2009

O'Reilly Joins Beck in Fantasizing About Assaulting Michael Moore

Michael Moore says he won't appear on Glenn Beck's or Bill O'Reilly's Fox News show to promote his new film Capitalism: A Love Story because there's too much hate speech on those shows. Last night, O'Reilly strengthened Moore's argument in a segment in which he discussed Michael Moore's body language with regular guest Tonya Reimer: O'REILLY: Right. Would it be wrong if I slapped him? REIMAN: We'll have to let him judge that. O'REILLY: You just want…. REIMAN: Not a big fan, are we? O'REILLY: You know, it's an interesting question. I admire his entrepreneurship. I admire his creativity. But […]

Jul
15
2009

PR Successfully Sicced on 'Sicko'

Former PR agent Wendell Potter's stories of how he helped the health insurance's industry's campaign "to discredit Michael Moore and his film Sicko" calls to mind just how successful that campaign was. Corporate media coverage of the debate raised by the film's expose of the for-profit insurance system went out of its way to demonize Moore. USA Today ran an editorial tied to the film against a single-payer healthcare plan, which was paired with an "Opposing View" from an insurance executive that denounced single-payer even more harshly. CBS News' Jeff Greenfield distinguished himself with his (inaccurate) claim that the U.S. […]

May
20
2009

California Health Reform, Minus Single-Payer

The Wall Street Journal's Gerald Seib wrote a piece today (5/20/09–subscription required) that offers California as a model for understanding the difficulties in overhauling the healthcare system: California's experience, in fact, represented a kind of trial run for the healthcare overhaul the president and Congress are about to attempt on the national level, offering useful lessons as well as warning signs about the potholes ahead. Well, yes and no. Seib writes that the "California example showed the importance of securing at least some bipartisan support, the need to reassure those who have insurance as well as those who don't, and […]

Mar
13
2009

On Sanjay Gupta's 'Breathless' Gullibility

Stating that "a lot of funny things can happen when the media translate science for the public," science writer Chris Mooney (Nation, 3/6/09) looks over more evidence that the U.S. public got really lucky when CNN's Sanjay Gupta was not made Obama's surgeon general. Mooney's list of Gupta "approaching medical coverage through 'one the one hand, on the other hand' equivocation, the selling of medical entertainment, following the pack or simply getting it wrong" clearly illustrates "what always made Gupta's nomination worrisome": Consider a few of Gupta's journalistic missteps. In late December 2002–a slow news week after Christmas–an outfit named […]

Mar
13
2009

LAT False Equivalence: Michael Moore = Limbaugh

Over on Media Matters' County Fair blog (3/12/09), Jamison Foser asks, "Is there any major-newspaper reporter who is more consistently wrong than Andrew Malcolm?" The latest gaffe by the Laura Bush flak-turned-L.A. Times writer comes in response to filmmaker Michael Moore's explaining what he sees as the difference between Democratic framing of Rush Limbaugh as the GOP's real leader and Republicans' similar claim about Moore and the Democratic Party: But some commentators (Richard Wolffe of Newsweek, Chuck Todd of NBC News, etc.) have likened this to "what Republicans tried to do to the Democrats with Michael Moore." Perhaps. But there […]

Nov
20
2008

'I Knew He Knew Who I Was'

Glenn Beck has been telling a personal story illustrating what he says is a particularly intense level of hatred on the left. According to the newly signed Fox News host, he was verbally assaulted by a truck driver while standing in line at a Wendy's restaurant at a truck stop. Writing on his blog, Beck says the truck driver called him a "racist bigot," blaming the talk show host and conservatives "for everything." Wrote Beck, "The hatred was palpable." As his security detail stood between him and his assailant, Beck says the truck driver ended his rant by threatening to […]