Thursday, June 30, 2011

Will Main Stream Media Heap Scorn on Emanuel Like They Did on Walker, Kasich and Christie?

How many of you know that Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel is letting public employee unions know that there better be some kind of concessions to union contracts with the city, or he predicts as many as 600 public employees will face layoffs soon.

Emanuel’s proposal seemed to catch some public employee union leaders by surprise and they issued statements indicating that no negotiations have taken place between the city and union representing the city’s unionized workforce.  Emanuel said it would not be necessary to do the layoffs if the unions agree to reforms.  He noted that if the unions don’t agree to changes in the contracts layoffs will be the only choice left to him on the behalf of the taxpayers.

It’s not exactly the same, but Emanuel’s recent public proclamations are very similar to the ones made by Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, New Jersey Governor Chris Christies and Ohio Governor John Kasich.  All three governors have signed into law changes in public union contracts to keep their states from going bankrupt and to avoid having to lay off large numbers of public employees.

The dynamics in all these situations are very much the same.  Since public employee contracts in many of the cities and states are so generous, even far more generous than the private sector employee contracts, concessions must be made if the cities and states can avoid financial ruin.  The difference is that Walker, Christie and Kasich are Republican government officials, and Emanuel, the former chief of staff for President Barack Obama, is a Democrat.

It will be very interesting to see how the liberal advocates in the main stream media report on these new developments in Chicago.  In Wisconsin, New Jersey and Ohio, those Republican governors were savaged by some of the vilest commentary I have ever seen on the public air ways.  All three were called union busters, and Christie of New Jersey was labeled a Nazi by a state union official with nary an objection from main stream media reporters.

This will be a big challenge for the Democratic cheerleaders in the media.  Emanuel is doing what he has to do, just as Walker, Christie and Kasich had to do what they did.  Will these biased news reporters actually start reporting on this issue fairly now that it involves a Democratic government or will they, especially those at MSNBC, call Rahm everything from a union buster to a Nazi?

My guess is that they will their best to ignore the story, especially at the national level.  Stay tuned.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

MSNBC Makes Totally False Charges About Blagojevich Trial

In my posting yesterday, I discussed how news media advocates across the political spectrum seemed to equally heap scorn on Rod Blagojevich, the disgraced and now convicted former Democratic governor of Illinois. As you recall, earlier in the week, Blagojevich was convicted on 17 counts of corruption in his second trial after his first trial resulted in a minor conviction and a hung jury on the remaining counts.

To my surprise, the morning crew at MSNBC, probably the most biased news network in the history of television journalism, decided to label the Blagojevich convictions as a “miscarriage of justice.”  Yes.  You read that correctly.  Joe Scarborough, Mia Brzezinski, Willie Geist and Mike Barnicle all believe that the second trial was a violation of the Constitution’s protection against double jeopardy, being tried a second time on charges for which a person has already been acquitted.  There is only one problem with their premise:  “Blago,” as the former governor of Illinois is often named, was not acquitted of the same charges in the first trial he was convicted of in the second trial.

As I reported yesterday, after the first trial ended, several jurors made no mistake about the fact that Blagojevich would have been convicted of multiple counts, including some of the very serious charges involving the sale of the Illinois senate seat.  The reason that didn’t happen was because of one lone holdout, juror Jo Ann Chiakulas, who refused to go along with the other jurors on a guilty verdict for all but one of the charges.  In fact, there are some reports that Blagojevich would have been convicted of at least 11 more charges if it wasn’t for the reticence of one juror.  Several of the jurors from the first trial have publicly questioned how this one person could ignore what they believed was overwhelming evidence of guilt.

Chiakulas is a retired director of the Illinois Department of Public Health.  She was also known to be a political activist for the Chicago Democratic Party.  She made no mistake that she was the lone reason that Blagojevich was not convicted on more counts in the first trial, and in retrospect, many court observers are wondering how she ever made it on the jury considering her background.

Now I don’t know if it is willful ignorance on the part of MSNBC’s morning crew, but having a hung jury on multiple counts does not equal an acquittal in any way, shape or form.  Joe Scarborough actually has a law degree.  How does he not know that?  Did they just not review the fact of the first trial?  Are they that biased about the conviction of a Democratic governor?

Unlike many of the liberal advocates in the news media, I can’t read the minds and hearts of the morning crew at MSNBC, but what they did on that show in reporting on the Blagojevich trials was an embarrassment to anyone who believes in true quality journalism.  It is one thing to report facts in a biased manner.  It is quite another thing to completely ignore or falsify the facts. 

The corporate officers of MSNBC should be ashamed of what happened on their network.  Something tells me they are not.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Media Provides No Context from Blagojevich's First Trial

Former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich was convicted in 17 of 20 counts of corruption, including the sale of the Illinois senate seat once held by President Barack Obama. This was the second trial for the man known as “Blago,” and many in the news media on all sides of the political spectrum have not placed the second trial in context with the first.

The first trial ended last August with one conviction of lying to the FBI and a hung jury on the remaining counts.  Almost immediately, many members of the media began questioning the need for a second trial, indicating that U. S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald might be wasting taxpayer money in a desperate effort to have the former governor convicted on more serious charges.

The criticism of Fitzgerald came from all quarters even though there really was no cheerleading for Blagojevich because media pundits, both liberal and conservative, heaped plenty of scorn on the former government.  The amazing thing to me is that so few reporters told the whole story of the first trial.

After the first trial ended, several jurors made no mistake about the fact that Blagojevich would have been convicted of multiple counts, including some of the very serious charges involving the sale of the Illinois senate seat.  The reason that didn’t happen was because of one lone holdout, juror Jo Ann Chiakulas, who refused to go along with the other jurors on a guilty verdict for all but one of the charges.  In fact, there are some reports that Blagojevich would have been convicted of at least 11 more charges if it wasn’t for the reticence of one juror to convict on more serious counts.  Several of the jurors from the first trial have publicly questioned how this one person could ignore what they believed was overwhelming evidence of guilt.

Chiakulas is a retired director of the Illinois Department of Public Health.  She was also known to be a political activist for the Chicago Democratic Party.  She made no mistake that she was the lone reason that Blagojevich was not convicted on more counts in the first trial, and in retrospect, many court observers are wondering how she ever made it on the jury considering her background.

Nevertheless, “Blago” has met justice, and is likely to serve at least six years in prison.  As I said earlier in this post, I didn’t notice anyone in the new media cheering for him to be acquitted, but I wish they would have put the difference between the first trial and the second trial in a more honest context.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Jon Stewart and Other Fox News Detractors Factually Wrong

When John Stewart, host of The Daily Show on the Comedy Network, appeared on Fox News Sunday, he boldly proclaimed that polls show that Fox News viewers are consistently ill informed.  Stewart actually based his claim on one poll reportedly run by a George Soros organization

The poll, conducted in 2010, asked some good factual questions, but they were few in number compared to the politically loaded questions that were asked in the survey. The Baltimore Sun’s television critic, David Zurawik, hardly a conservative, wrote an entire column criticizing the poll.  He noted that a person was considered informed by the poll if they agreed with the conclusion of a government agency expert.  One of the questions in the poll asked if the respondent agreed that global warming was a real problem.  If you disagreed, you were considered ill informed.  That sounds more to me like a survey to gauge a person’s opinion and not factual knowledge.

The Pulitzer Prize-winning website PolitiFact, operated by the St. Petersburg Times, noted that there are several other national polls that rate Fox viewers as well-informed as most viewers of other major news networks.  These polls, conducted by the Pew Organization, actually show that viewers of Fox News’ two most popular shows, the O’Reilly Factor and Hannity rank consistently higher than viewers of just about every show, including Stewart’s own show.  In last year’s Pew Poll, Fox News viewers scored better, not worse, than MSNBC, CNN, the network evening news and the network morning news.

Jon Stewart consistently points out that his first priority is comedy, and liberal advocacy is secondary.  However, he was very serious when he used the skewed poll to denounce Fox News viewers.

I have many liberal friends, and, fortunately, none of them are anywhere near as arrogant and condescending as Jon Stewart and other liberal advocates in the media.  These liberal media personalities consistently talk about their intellectual superiority and belittle and berate anyone who disagrees with them.  When you find out the facts, however, you can’t help but laugh at their self-proclaimed superior intellect.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Can Presidents Ever Work With the Opposition Party Like Governors Do?

New Jersey Republican Governor Chris Christie has done something that President Obama can only dream he could do.  Christie worked with a Democratically-controlled House and Senate in New Jersey to pass historic pension and health care reform that is expected to save the state $130 billion over the next 30 years.

This is not the first example of a governor of one party working with a state legislature dominated by the opposition party to achieve good outcomes for a state.  George W. Bush had a great record or working with the Democrats in Texas when he was the governor there.  In fact, a few Democratic office holders from Texas showed up at the Republican National Convention in 2000 to sing Bush’s praises.

Bill Clinton also appeared to have a good relationship with Republican legislators in Arkansas when he was governor of that state.  They achieved a record of accomplishment together that enable Clinton to catapult himself to the Presidency in 1992.

Unfortunately, for Clinton and Bush, their success with opposition party leaders did not continue when they became President of the United States.  Both ended up serving two terms, but both faced fierce opposition and sometimes vitriolic attacks from the opposing party.

The national news media in these instances tends to blame the party the respective reporters don’t like instead of examining the phenomena.  I wish they would do extensive reporting on why governors of both parties who have won the Presidency with strong records of reaching out to the opposition party face little more than gridlock once they get to Washington, D.C.  It may have happened, but I have never seen a news reports that really investigate the reasons that former state chief executives with great records of bipartisanship can’t achieve the same outcome as President.

Could somebody in the national media really take a look into this situation, which has existed for decades?  There are many of us out here in the other states beyond the beltway who would like to know if the political situation in our nation’s capitol is so toxic that any future President is likely to face unreasonable opposition no matter what he or she proposes.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Main Stream Media Should Be More Honest About Global Warming

In past posts about global warming, or climate change as some now call it, I have freely admitted that I am still not sure who to believe about the issue.  I have written repeatedly about the well-qualified scientists who have spoken out on all sides of the issue.  My primary complaint, however, is that the main stream media seems so wedded to promoting the idea that global warming is a certainty that they have not reported most of the contrary information being written by scientists with great credentials.

Just a few days ago, I wrote about a British article that indicates a group of so-called “heavyweight” US solar physicists say the Sun may be headed into a lengthy spell of low activity.  Because of this observation, these scientists are predicting that the earth may be headed into a mini Ice Age.  I have yet to see this reported by CBS, NBC or ABC.  I don’t have time to watch every news broadcast, but when I Google this information, I see no connection to a report from a mainstream media outlet in the United States

Now comes word that one of the leading scientific advocates of global warming, Dr. James Hansen of NASA, is being sued for profiting privately for his advocacy while still working for NASA, which is a violation of Federal policy.  Have you heard about the suit?  Well, if you look on the Internet long enough, you actually may find a story or two.

As you may recall, Al Gore, the godfather of global warming, has often said that any scientists who disagree with him have been compromised by money from carbon-based fuel companies, like oil companies and coal companies.  If you use the same standard Gore uses, hasn’t Dr. Hansen been compromised by the money he has received from environmental groups.

I don’t believe that this revelation automatically discredits Dr. Hansen’s research and conclusions, but it does put his advocacy into question.  What I want to know is where is the news coverage of this disclosure?

If we truly had journalists and communicators instead of media lapdogs and a never-ending parade of advocacy spin doctors, we could examine all the theories and educated guesses that are being made about global warming without setting up the advocates for condemnation if they happen to guess wrong.  Yes, there is a lot of research and other type of funding involved on both sides of the issues, but that does not automatically make the advocates deceptive and evil people.

Since I can’t read minds and hearts, I would like to suggest that we have many well-educated, highly experienced scientific experts who disagree, and only time will tell if they are guessing right or wrong.  Are some of them being co-opted by large sums of money?  Maybe, some are. Unfortunately, we do not, in my estimation, have the type of journalists in the media who will be open to examining all the new data and documentation as well as all the scientists releasing such information and treating it all equally instead of worrying about which advocacy position is being supported or debunked. 

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Now Liberal Media Elitist Accuses John McCain of Fueling Racism

Early in the Obama Administration, Eric Holder, the Attorney General, said that the American people are cowards about having an open and honest discussion about race.  This is one of the few times I would agree with Mr. Holder, but I suspect we might still disagree on the reasons why.

In my opinion, Lee Hockstader, a member of the Washington Post’s editorial board, has provided a great example of why we can’t have an honest discussion about race or bigotry of any kind.  In a recent column he wrote, he accused Arizona Senator John McCain of fueling racial bigotry simply because McCain said what most people in Arizona know may be true.  McCain said that some the wild fires that are raging throughout the state may have been set by illegal immigrants.

McCain did not say that these illegal immigrants came to the state specifically or intentionally to set fires that would evolve into raging infernos responsible for extensive damage to forests and some homes.  He pointed out what many law enforcement officials have known for years, and that is some illegal immigrants set fires to stay warm at night or to use as a diversionary tactic to avoid law enforcement agencies.  Just ask some of the sheriffs of the border counties.

That doesn’t matter to Hockstader who used the statement of one U.S. Forest Service official who said the blaze was probably caused by an “escaped campfire,” and he went on to say that there was no reason to think illegal immigrants were behind it. Since no one has been arrested or even questioned for starting one of the several wild fires raging in the state, my questions is how does anyone know who’s behind it?  When I say anyone, I mean McCain, Hockstader, or the government official.

While sitting in his ivory tower in Washington, D.C, Hockstader has determined that no illegal immigrant is responsible for any of the fires in Arizona, and John McCain made the statement for political gain.  As I said, no one has been arrested for intentionally or accidentally starting any of the fires, and so the jury is still out on Hockstader’s first claim.  As for McCain saying what he said for political gain, let’s see now:  he is not running for President, and he was just re-elected to another six-year term in the Senate, which at his age is likely to be his last.  Logic would indicate that McCain no longer has a political motivation to say anything.

Hockstader’s accusation is particularly irrational considering McCain’s long record of support for comprehensive immigration reform.  McCain has paid a considerable price in conservative circles for advocating a policy that many on the right consider to be nothing more than another dressed-up amnesty plan.

Eric Holder desire for an honest discussion about the issue of race is not going to take place as long his friends in the liberal news media and the entertainment field use every opportunity to tag everyone they don’t agree with as racists or bigots. Unfortunately, it seems that it will always be in the best interest of these agenda-driven ideologues to keep doing so.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Anthony Trial Shows Legal System at Its Worst

I have written a post in the past about my frustrations with the legal system, and the Casey Anthony trial in Florida is proving to be one of the best example of why many people don’t trust lawyers or our legal system.

I covered trials as a reporter and was once a juror, having been voted to be the foreman of the jury by my fellow jurors.  It has been my observation that instead of being forums for determining the truth, trials often become nothing more than debate tournaments between opposing legal counsels.   

Sometimes, as has happened in the murder case of Casey Anthony, the attorneys, especially the defense attorney in this situation, puts on a spectacle that appears designed to get to anything but the truth.  Jose Baez, the defense attorney for Anthony has posed a premise that Casey did not kill her daughter, but panicked after her daughter drowned in the family pool and then engaged in a cover up.  As Baez said in his opening statement, “Casey may be guilty of not calling 911, but she is not guilty of murder.”

To refresh your memory, in July of 2008, Casey Anthony reported to police that her daughter had been missing a month.  Casey said she had nothing to do with the disappearance of her daughter, and when the body of two-year-old Caylee was eventually found in December 2008, Casey said she had nothing to do with her child’s death.

Now I understand that it is the duty of a defense attorney to help get a not-guilty verdict for the client.  That’s a fundamental right provided by the Constitution.  However, it is also my understanding that a defense attorney cannot concoct a totally false premise to gain an acquittal.  If an attorney does that, they are subject to legal and professional sanctions.

I’m not in the court room, and I haven’t read every news account on the Anthony trial, but it appears to me so far that Baez has created a totally false premise in an attempt to get Casey acquitted.  The autopsy of Caylee Anthony’s body shows no indication of a drowning.  What is more damning is that police have testified during the trial that they offered Casey a plea deal in which she could plead guilty to concealing an accidental death and was turned down.

After some of the jury decisions that have occurred during my lifetime, I wouldn’t dare predict the outcome of this trial.  However, if it turns out that Anthony’s defense turns out to be a total fraud, I hope the court does whatever it can to throw the book at defense attorney Jose Baez.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Now a Report Says We are Heading for a Mini Ice Age

Now comes word from a news report that a group of so-called “heavyweight” US solar physicists say the Sun may be entering a lengthy spell of low activity.  Because of this observation, these scientists are predicting that the earth may be headed into a mini Ice Age.

According to the report, three different analyses of the Sun’s activities indicate that the Sun is heading into a period of extremely low solar activity.  Scientists from the US National Solar Observatory and the US Air Force Research Laboratory suspect that the slowdown in sunspot activity may be a harbinger of a 70-year period with virtually no sunspots.  Some scientists believe that this period of solar inactivity could also correspond with a “Little Ice Age” when rivers that normally are ice-free tend to freeze over and snow fields can remain year-round in the areas closer to the north and south poles.

Where did I read this story?  Well, it wasn’t in The New York Time, but it did appear in a British newspaper called The Register.  Imagine that?  I had to read about the findings of prestigious US scientists in a British newspaper.  Why?  Is this just another indication that the liberal main stream media in the United States is so wedded to the concept of global warming and climate change that they would ignore these findings?

As for me, I just look at this report as just another bit of information from a never ending litany of reports on future climate trends that predict all kind of outcomes.  It may have some validity, or it may involve a little exaggeration in order to get attention for the scientist's research.  I am not knowledgeable enough about weather and climate to know if these findings are a true barometer of things to come.

Over the course of my lifetime, I have heard all kind of predictions from very well-educated scientists.  Researchers with very impressive credentials are convinced we are heading for a global meltdown, while other researchers with equally impressive academic and professional portfolios are just as convinced that global warming is a scam.

No matter where you stand on the issue of global warming, or climate change as it is now called, there are certain facts you should consider.  The earth is believed to be approximately 4.5 billion years old.  The earliest records of temperature measured by thermometers are from Western Europe beginning in the late 17th and early 18th centuries. Given the earth is billions of years old, and we only have what we would consider accurate records to be less than 200 years old, how can even the most zealous advocate claim a definite trend?

So now we have a new report that says we are heading for a much colder period.  I have no idea if the research of the solar observers is legitimate.  However, if their predictions turn out to be accurate, then I am glad I live in the desert of Arizona instead of Chicago where I experienced enough brutally cold winters to last a lifetime.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Why Anthony Weiner Had to Resign While Bill Clinton Didn't

Since New York Congressman Anthony Weiner resigned yesterday, many conservatives I know are wondering why he had to resign when Bill Clinton engaged in far more egregious action during his Presidency and got away with it.

I believe the totally different media environment that exists now contributed greatly to the different results.  Back in 1998 when the Monica Lewinsky scandal broke during the Clinton Administration, Fox News was still in its infancy and was not the media force it is today.  The Drudge Report had just started and didn’t have the credibility it has today.  In fact, it was Drudge breaking the Lewinsky story that gave the now famous Internet site its first big dose of credibility.  In addition, there were no big independent Internet news sites, like the one operated by Andrew Brietbart, to examine and report on the stories the liberal main stream media wants to avoid.

For those of you who have forgotten, in 1998 several reporters, including the very liberal reporter Michael Isikoff, had much of the information on the Lewinsky scandal before Drudge did, but they hid the information until it broke on Drudge.  Then, they had no choice but to report what they had already known for weeks.

None of this is surprising for those of us who have followed the news media for decades.  Many reporters from Ben Bradlee on have known about the philandering of politicians who they favor, but they kept quiet about it because they didn’t want to hurt their political careers.  Remember that the National Enquirer had all the information about John Edwards’s scandal long before the main stream media wanted to even admit Edwards had a problem.

Now the news media dynamic has changed considerably, but the Weiner scandal still indicates how far many in the main stream media will try to minimize any scandal that involves a liberal Democrat.  When Andrew Brietbart first broke the Weiner story, many in the main stream media, especially at MSNBC, did their best to discredit Breitbart.  It was only when the avalanche of evidence about Weiner was revealed that the main stream media had to acknowledge the New York Congressman’s culpability.

My guess is if back in 1998, Fox News and the Drudge Report were the media giants there are now, Bill Clinton would have had a far more difficult time staying in office.  Add an Andrew Brietbart to the mix digging for the information the Clinton-loving main stream media would be trying to avoid, and I figure Clinton might not have served out his final term.  Yes, there is a good case to be made that what Clinton did was far worse than what Weiner has done, but thanks to Fox News and Internet news sites, we now have a far more balanced news media.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Still No Media Outrage About Obama's Incursion in Libya

It’s time for another edition of “What if George Bush did what Barack Obama is doing now?”

I know the liberal main stream media was in the tank for Obama’s election in 2008, and it appears that they are gearing up to do everything they can do to see that he is re-elected in 2012.  However, even the most ardent Obama supporter should be at least a little upset about his continuing military operation against Libya without any congressional support.

There is now a bi-partisan group in Congress suing the President over his commitment of the United States military to action in Libya without their support, and their action is getting some coverage to some extent. One of the problems is that nobody really knows what Obama is doing.  Is this a war?  Is it a police action?  Is it just a limited military excursion as White House Press Secretary Jay Carney once described it?  Who know?  It would be nice if Obama followed the Constitution he swore to defend and actually explain to Congress what he is doing in Libya and get their support for his action.

The War Powers Act, passed by Congress in 1973, requires the President to gain congressional approval within 60 days of commencing any military action.  Just to refresh your memory, the military action in Libya with U.S. Troops participating, began March 18.  We are well past the 60-day limit.  A President can get an extra 30-day extension, but only if the President can prove to Congress in writing that military action is crucial to the safety of the United States.  Well….I haven’t seen any Libyan jets flying over Phoenix.  Has anyone seen Libyan jets flying over any other part of the country?

I understand why the main stream media is downplaying Obama’s end run around the Constitution, but where are those anti-war activists like Cindy Sheehan?  When her son was killed during the Iraq War, Sheehan went on a national crusade to discredit then President George W. Bush for staging what she claimed was an illegal war.  Sheehan would often camp outside Bush’s home in Texas or demonstrate in front of the White House.

Where are you, Cindy?  Why aren’t you and the women at Code Pink holding demonstrations against Obama’s clearly illegal military action in Libya?  You know where the White House is.  I can also tell you that Obama’s Chicago home is in the Hyde Park-Kenwood neighborhood, near the University of Chicago, just off South Lake Shore Drive.  You can’t miss it.  There is a big police presence in front of his home.

As I have said in previous posts, Presidents of both parties have ignored the Constitution since World War II when deciding to send our military into action.  Despite that, the Supreme Court has done nothing to stop this abuse of executive power.  Why do we have a Constitution if nobody is going to honor it?

I do have one proposal for a new national military policy that I believe would get overwhelming public support.  Do not commit our troops to any action without a Constitutional declaration of war from Congress.  Once you have the full faith and support of the American Congress, do not saddle our military with rules of engagement that would appease The New York Times editorial board.  I think the American public would go for that.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Liberal Media Attack on Palin Appears to Have Backfired

As I wrote yesterday, several news organizations from what is known as our wonderful main stream media has been pouring over thousands of e-mails from Sarah Palin when she was governor of Alaska.  Unfortunately for these news organizations, their fishing expedition to find something embarrassing to tag Palin appears to have backfired.

One of the best stories about this foolish endeavor has been written by Toby Harden, the U.S. editor for The Daily Telegraph, a British newspaper.  His story indicates that the e-mails tend to characterize Palin as an “idealistic, conscientious, humorous and humane woman slightly bemused by the world or politics.”  Harden believes that the effort to embarrass Palin has failed and that her reputation will actually be enhanced if the main stream media is fair about releasing the information found in the documents.  He noted that the communications from her family demonstrate how loving and close the Palin family truly appears to be.

Nevertheless, the lack of embarrassing information in the e-mails did not keep one main stream media pundit from taking a shot at Palin.  Michael Gerson of the Washington Post admits that the e-mails paint a very positive picture of Palin.  He acknowledged that the documents paint her as a person who was kind to her staff, responsive to her constituents and protective of her state.  Yet Gerson insists on proclaiming that Palin has now morphed into a sad ideological caricature.

Excuse me, Mr. Gerson, but here is my interpretation of your scenario.  The e-mails and other documents that the liberal media uncovered reveal the reality of who Sarah Palin is.  It shows a very pragmatic governor who has a strong political philosophy that she did not let get in the way of doing the right thing for Alaska.  The documents also show she has a few flaws, just like the rest of us mere mortals.

The caricature you talk about, Mr. Gerson, is one created by you and the rest of your friends in the main stream media.  Now you are disappointed that the reality of who she really is contradicts just about every negative thing you so-called journalists claimed was true about her.  Don’t worry, Mr. Gerson, now that the facts about Palin don’t conform to the template you’ve created about her, you can do what you and most of the political pundits in mainstream media do best….make something up.

Monday, June 13, 2011

An All-Out Liberal News Media Attack on Sarah Palin

I have been in journalism and communications for more than 35 years, and I have never seen anything the likes this.  Several main stream news organizations are going after former Republican Vice Presidential nominee Sarah Palin.  To call it a witch hunt would be kind.

I wonder how many of you know that news organizations sought and received court permission to gain access to thousands of Sarah Palin’s e-mails while she was governor of Alaska.  In fact, the New York Times and Washington Post actually hired temporary personnel to go through the documents and determine whether there is anything news worthy in them.

Now, was there some circumstantial evidence available beforehand that Palin may have engaged in duplicity to get this country into a secret war?  Not that I know, and I am as much a news junkie as anyone. 

Is Palin suspected to sending racy photographs of herself to young men and sending suggestive texts?  Not even her biggest haters have suggested she has done that. 

Is Palin suspected of malfeasance in office, and the media hopes to find evidence of such in the e-mail documents?  Well, there actually was an ethics investigation concerning Palin a few years ago, and nothing of substance was discovered.

Is Palin suspected of committing some other kind of crime not related to her office, and the e-mails might provide some evidence to that effect?  Well, I have heard no one, not even the Palin detractors at MSNBC, imply that.

Then why are these news organizations spending so much time and expending so many resources to examine the e-mails of a politician who has been out of office for a few years?  I don’t know the answer, but I will say what I suspect.  Sarah Palin has committed a crime in the eyes of the main stream media.  Technically it is not a real crime; it is just the crime of being a successful, attractive, charismatic, conservative woman.   Even though the liberal pundits in the liberal main stream media say Palin has no chance of winning the Presidency even if she were to ever win the Republican nomination, it appears that these news organizations are taking no chances.  They seem to be hell bent on finding any information to embarrass Palin and/or even destroy her.

When I first heard of this effort, I wondered why the media didn’t go the e-mail of former Presidents Bush or Clinton while they were in office.  I imagine you could find some very interesting reading there.  How about trying to get the e-mails of former Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi? 

Like I said in the opening of this post, I’ve never seen news organizations go after anyone the way these liberal main stream news operations are going after Sarah Palin.  They didn’t even go after Richard Nixon with such zeal, and he gave them plenty of reasons to do so.  Shame on them.  How dare they call themselves journalists?

Friday, June 10, 2011

Wildfires and Tornadoes Prove It's Foolish to Think Man Can Control Nature

The recent wildfires in Arizona and the outbreak of devastating tornadoes in the Midwest and South should indicate to climate change advocates that there really is very little mankind can do at our stage of technological development to control nature.

Nevertheless, there are those global warming fanatics who still believe that we can dictate the climate trends of the future by just changing our lifestyles to what they recommend.  Unfortunately, there are also many news media advocates who have bought into that argument. 

Overall, world temperatures appear to have been dropping in a way that was not predicted by the computer models being touted by the advocates of global warming.  I can go on and on giving examples that the earth is actually starting to cool with equally compelling information that would indicate that the recent cooling is just an aberration.  When real experts with significant scientific experience can’t agree, how can we take news media and celebrity advocates seriously?

What bothers me most about the way the media covers this issue is that seldom do you see actual experts on news shows.  You hear from former Vice President Al Gore or some other celebrity who are absolutely sure there is man-made global warming, but Gore will always refuse to publicly debate anyone on the subject. When the media does produce experts, they cherry pick them according to whatever bias the show has.  In late 2009, both CNN and the Fox News Network did some good work examining all sides of the issue and included experts with varied points of view, but still some of the commentators, like Wolf Blitzer of CNN, claims that there is a scientific consensus that global warming exists, and it is caused by humans.

Much of the Midwest and the East Coast experienced one of the longest and coldest winters this year.  Then in just the past week, much of the Midwest and East Coast has experienced one of the earliest heat waves.  In the past week, Chicago had three straight days in the mid 90s, only to be followed by a few days where it didn’t get out of the 50s in some of the metropolitan areas.

How is anyone supposed to determine a trend from such contradictory information?  More importantly, how can any truly rational person think we can control hurricanes, tornadoes, flooding rains and earthquakes?

During my lifetime, it has already been proven that the eruption of a major volcano has a greater affect on a region’s weather than anything man has done up to this point.  However, if you want to believe the fear merchants in entertainment and the media, go ahead. 

Usually, I don’t make predictions, but I will in this case.  We are likely to see more cold waves in the winter, record snowfalls in some areas of the country, record high temperatures in other areas of the country during the summer, major and destructive tornadoes, devastating hurricanes and epic earthquakes.  I also predict that there will be precious little we can do to stop those events.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

I'm Sorry, But MSNBC Is Awful

Yesterday, I posted a story about how some in the liberal main stream media are actually practicing journalism and applying equal scrutiny across the board, even to those who share their political and social views.  However, there is still one media outlet that apparently doesn’t even begin to understand the meaning of journalism, and that is MSNBC.

It has been a long-standing joke among many who truly believe in journalistic integrity that MSNBC is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Democratic Party, but the so-called news network has set new standards for bias during the scandal involving New York Congressman Anthony Weiner.  The show hosts began last week by attacking the messenger, Internet Journalist Activist Andrew Brietbart, and downplaying the severity of the Weiner’s transgressions.

Now that it appears that everything in Breibart’s original Internet stories were true, most of the main stream liberal media has castigated Weiner for attacking the messenger of his scandal and perpetuating a series of lies for 10 days.  Of course, the exception is MSNBC.

I’m sorry, but there is no way to sugarcoat it.  MSNBC is awful.  It is not a journalistic entity.  It has proven beyond any reasonable doubt that it is the propaganda arm on the Obama Administration, the Democratic Party and the liberal elite in this country.  It pains me to say this because many of my truly decent liberal friends love the station and will not acknowledge the bias that seems to be obvious to everyone else.

Last night, Ed Schultz, host of the “Ed Show,” did call for Weiner to resign, but not because what the Congressman did was wrong and dishonest, but because he has become a liability to the liberal cause.  In his opening diatribe, Schultz was still trying to paint Weiner as a victim of Brietbart, who Schultz described as a professional character assassin.  He then went on to castigate Brietbart for showing embarrassing pictures of Weiner on his Internet news website.

Sorry, Ed, but Brietbart or anyone else could never have put those pictures on a website if Weiner didn’t upload the inappropriate photos in the first place.  Blaming the messenger for exposing corrupt politicians is usually not the province of those who claims to be part of a journalistic entity.

Defenders of MSNBC always claim that the network is a counter to Fox News, which they contend is cheer leading for the Republican Party.  Outside of Shawn Hannity, who freely admits he is an advocate for the Republican Party and the conservative cause, you really would be hard pressed to find show hosts that promote any party.  Don’t believe me?  Then take time to actually watch Fox News as I actually watch MSNBC.

Unlike the fascists at Media Matters, who are actively trying to get Fox News off the air, I would never recommend that anyone start a campaign to get advertisers to abandon MSNBC.  I believe that the free marketplace of ideas should be open to all opinions, and I am opposed to any campaign to silence anyone.

In a totally free marketplace of expression, the public decides what ideas they support or oppose.   Based on the continuing anemic ratings that MSNBC is getting, it appears that the public doesn’t buy the network’s biased, vitriolic and hateful rhetoric.  Thank God!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Kudos to Main Stream Media News People Who Are Acting Like Journalists

Any regular reader of my blog will acknowledge that I have been very tough lately on the main stream liberals in the news media for not downplaying or even ignoring facts about those politicians they favor.

Nevertheless, when you write a blog as I do, you have an obligation to your readers to point out times when those who you criticize are doing what reporters should do.  Fortunately, we are beginning to see some mainstays in the media acting like the true reporters they should be.

On last Sunday’s edition of the CBS News interview show “Face the Nation,” Bob Schieffer really let Nancy Pelosi have it on the economy.  He chided Pelosi and the Democrats for not doing anything in the present to spark more economic growth and then reminded her how she condemned George Bush in January 2008 for 5 percent unemployment and $3 gas.  He then asked her if the Republicans now had the same right to say President Barack Obama has failed the American people with 9 percent unemployment and gas that is more than $4 a gallon.  Of course, Pelosi did what politicians usually do and claimed she didn’t want to talk about the past.

Another main stream reporter, David Fahrenthold of the Washington Post, wrote a story about how many politicians, including President Obama, have had a history of misquoting the founding fathers.  His story was in response to many liberal reporters and commentators, especially those at MSNBC, who continue to berate Sarah Palin for what may have not been a gaffe about Paul Revere.  I’ve heard so many different versions from historians that I don’t know if Palin got it wrong about Revere’s famous midnight run.

The primary point Fahrenthold was making in his article is that targeting just Sarah Palin is unfair.  He notes that “Senators, House members and even President Barack Obama have misquoted the Founding Fathers in recent years – reverently repeating words that are either altered or entirely false.  It was nice to see a member of the main stream media provide a more balanced view of such gaffes.

I would like to give one final thumbs up today to Jack Cafferty of CNN News.  Cafferty is a commentator who has always been fair.  While I suspect he is a liberal, it doesn’t really matter because Cafferty goes after wayward politicians of both parties.

Yesterday, Cafferty called for New York Congressman Anthony Weiner to resign because of his Internet scandal over sexual impropriety.  Cafferty said, “Not only did he send those sleazy pictures, pretty sick stuff in and of itself, he repeatedly lied about doing so.  He sat down with countless reporters and members of the media and lied over and over and over again.

“This leads one to wonder: What else does he lie about?  How can his constituents or anyone else for that matter trust anything he says?”

The examples I have given provide a little evidence that the main stream media just might not be in the tank for Obama and the Democratic Party in the 2012 election cycle.  Well….maybe I shouldn’t go that far yet, but there is a glimmer of hope.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

What Weiner Did Was Just a Mistake?

Another self-absorbed narcissistic politician’s attempt to cover up a scandal has failed.  Anthony Weiner acknowledged that he actually did send inappropriate picture to young women other than his wife during the last year and for two years prior to getting married. In fact, some of them are reported to be downright lewd.

It was just last week that Weiner vehemently denied that he did anything wrong and even made the false claim that someone hacked into his “Twitter” account.  Weiner allegedly is supposed to be an intelligent man, but he didn’t learn one of the simple rules of modern media and politics. Get the truth out as fast as possible and move on.

During his mea culpa news conference, Weiner said that what he did amounted to a series of mistakes.  As usual, our compliant main stream media let another liberal politician get away with describing intentional acts as simple mistakes.

A mistake is an error.  When an infielder in baseball bobbles a simple ground ball, he commits an error, a simple mistake.  The player didn't intend to bobble the ball.  When you are not paying attention while driving and take the wrong exit on a freeway, you make a mistake.  It was not your intention to take the wrong exit.  In other words, a mistake can really be simply defined as an unintentional screw-up.

Unfortunately, none of those so-called reporters at the Weiner news conference challenged him on what basically could be considered another falsehood.  To believe Weiner made simple mistakes, you would have to believe that he didn't intend to take pictures of himself in his underwear or completely naked.  You would have to believe that he didn't realize that he uploaded those pictures on his "Twitter" account and sent them to several young women.  You would have to believe that Weiner didn't know he was engaging in phone sex with another woman and failed to acknowledge it.  I must imagine that when he was done making all of those supposedly unintentional actions, he probably just smacked himself on the forehead and said, "Wow, I should have had a V8."

I guess the only mistake that I made yesterday was hoping that one day a politician who gets caught with his pants down would actually admit that he intended to do everything he did.  I also mistakenly believed that at least one reporter would challenge him for not making that admission.  However, I have every intention of saying that most of our modern day media reporters are pretty lame, and that statement is not a mistake.

Monday, June 6, 2011

You Might Not Know That There Is Another Black Man Running for President in 2012 Because He’s a Republican

Everyone who pays attention to politics knows that Barack Obama is running for re-election to the Presidency in 2012.  What you may not know, however, is that another black man, Herman Cain, is also a declared candidate for the Presidency, but he just happens to be running for the Republican nomination, so the liberal main stream media is prone to ignore him.

As anyone who has paid attention to the way the media reports politics over the past 30 years, if you happen to be a black Republican or conservative, then you are really not black.  Clarence Thomas, the conservative black on the Supreme Court is not really black by media standards because he holds very traditional views and was appointed by a Republican president.  You may also remember how the media underplayed the race of Condalisa Rice, a brilliant, accomplished black woman who held a few important national security positions during the Bush Administration. Of course, there was Colin Powell, who wasn’t really black until he decided to back Barack Obama for the Presidency in 2008.

Now here comes Herman Cain, a black man with an exceptional background who has declared his candidacy for the Republican nomination for President.  For the most part, the main stream media is ignoring him, or when they do mention his name, it usually is in a derogatory fashion.  Roger Simon of Politico was on “Hardball,” the MSNBC show hosted by Chris Matthews, when he sarcastically said that he might go to Cain for advice on whether pizza should be thin or thick crust, but he would seek his advice on economics.  For those of you who don’t know Cain was once CEO of Godfather Pizza.  What Simon may not know is that Cain served on the board of the directors of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City and actually was the Chairman of the Board for a shot time in the mid-90s.

Cain’s educational and professional background is truly impressive.  He has a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Morehouse College and a master’s degree in computer science from Purdue University.  He earned his master’s degree while working in ballistics for the U.S. Department of Navy.

After leaving the Navy, he joined Pillsbury where he rose to the position of vice president, leaving his post to work for Burger King, a Pillsbury subsidiary, to manage 400 stores in the Philadelphia area.  During his tenure, his region went from the least profitable for Burger King to the most profitable.  Pillsbury eventually made Cain CEO of Godfather’s Pizza, and he returned the pizza chain to profitability in a very short time.

In addition to his business achievements, Cain has served as a commentator for Fox Business and has written a syndicated column for several years.  He even hosted a talk radio show in Atlanta, GA.

All in all, Cain has very significant business and leadership credentials.  In fact, his background as a seasoned chief executive is far more impressive than the current occupant of the White House.  No wonder the main stream media is downplaying or, in some cases, ignoring completely this very accomplished black American.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Edwards Indicted,But Liberal Media Aided His Cover-Up

Former North Carolina Senator and Democratic Vice Presidential nominee John Edwards was indicted today by a federal grand jury on six counts, including conspiracy, issuing false statements and violating campaign contribution laws.  The indictments stem from Edwards allegedly using campaign funds to keep his extramarital affair in Rielle Hunter quiet while he was running for the 2008 Democratic Presidential Nomination eventually won by Barack Obama.

Sexual scandals involving politicians are nothing new, and the way a politician responds to the scandal often means the difference between being indicted or not.  We have two present examples involving current New York Democratic Congressman Anthony Weiner and former California Republican Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger that may also result in some form of legal action in the future.

The real tragedy about the Edwards’ indictment is the way the liberal main stream media did its best to cover up the story while he was still a viable candidate for the Democratic Presidential Nomination in 2008.  Many in the media favored his “Two Americas” campaign theme, and some said that he was the only candidate that was truly addressing the issue of poverty in the United States.  Therefore, they decided to ignore a story that was originally made public by the National Enquirer in the fall of 2007, long before the first caucus or primary took place.

Since then, many in the main stream media have dodged criticism for covering for a man who could have been elected President.  After all, he was John Kerry’s running mate in the 2004 Presidential election and had been considered a reasonably strong contender for the Democratic nomination in 2008.

However, many in the main stream media said that they didn’t cover anything up because they could not confirm the affair Edwards was having, nor could they confirm he had a love child with Ms. Hunter until after he was no longer a contender.  CNN’s Jessica Yellin responded to the criticism in August of 2008 by saying, “Edwards’ story was unimportant.  He wasn’t a contender.”

Nonsense.  The National Enquirer first broke the story of John Edwards’ affair on October 22, 2007.  There were also links to the story on many Internet websites. In addition, many bloggers started getting more information on the scandal and furthering the story.  By December 19, 2009, the Enquirer had almost the complete story, including Rielle Hunter’s name and the fact, later confirmed after multiple denials, that the woman was pregnant with Edward’s child.

There you have it.  The National Enquirer had almost the complete story on the John Edwards’ scandal long before the first vote in the Presidential nomination process was ever cast.  Unfortunately, the liberal cheerleaders in the main stream media chose to ignore what was already out there for months.  What will they ignore about other government officials and politicians they favor, and how will they excuse it next time the truth comes out?

I began my career as a newspaper reporter and later became a managing editor of a Chicago suburban chain of newspapers.  I and my colleagues used to laugh about the stuff we would see headlined on the National Enquirer at the supermarket check-out counter.   I never thought I would see the day when I had more respect for the reporters at the Enquirer than I would for the reporters of what we call our regular news media.  Sadly, that day has come. 

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Weiner Controversy Exposes the Problem with Media Advocacy

Democratic New York Congressman Anthony Weiner allegedly did or did not send a picture of himself in his underwear on social media to some young women across the country. I don’t know of any criminal in that kind of action if it can be proven Weiner did it.

To me, the problem is not whether Weiner did it or didn’t do it; it the way the news media reports on these types of embarrassing sexual situations.  If you turn on the different cable news stations, you get a different accounting depending on the bias of the station and the host of any particular news and political show.  For instance, last night MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell said on his show that the whole controversy was hyped by right-wing social conservatives who want to bring down Weiner.  O’Donnell actually referred to Weiner as a friend of his show “The Last Word.”  Sounds like some real objective reporting there.

On Fox News and to a lesser extent on CNN, the reporters and show hosts are taking the controversy a little more seriously, but they are rightly pointing out that Weiner has learned nothing from past political scandals.  The pundits on these stations spent a lot of time opining on the foolishness of Weiner dragging out the controversy by not be immediately forthcoming.  Ever since the Watergate scandal, politicians still haven’t seemed to learn that the cover-up usually is far worse than the act itself.

I have repeatedly in my posts lamented about the bias on all sides in our modern-day news media.  As with many politically embarrassing stories, you can’t get a straight story from any one source.  The liberals in the media are trying to protect Weiner while many conservatives in the media are doing their best to mock him.

The problem with advocacy media is that many questions that should be asked do not get asked. I would like to know what kind of adult man in any position of responsibility would take a picture of himself in his underwear and then upload it on a social media site, especially since Weiner has been married for less than a year. I am not a technical genius, but it is my understanding that no one could hack into Weiner’s site and download the picture if it didn’t exist in cyber space in the first place.  It is true that someone can upload a picture and claim it is Weiner, but if Weiner never uploaded a picture of himself in his underwear, then he can easily deny that the picture is him, and he has yet to do that.

Certainly, there are more important issues in the public arena.  The economy appears to be headed for a double-dip recession, and the Middle East is still very much in turmoil.  Nevertheless, another political self-absorbed narcissist can’t seem to learn a simple lesson of modern politics and the media....get the truth out as fast as possible, and move on.