9:02 AM Mar 8, 2008

by Rob Ritchie

When the Democratic nomination is over, and the press have to choose, this should become apparent to every Republican:

When you're the darling of the press, you're feisty. When you're the Republican nominee for President, you're dangerously unstable.

11:45 AM Sep 12, 2005

by Rob Ritchie

Michelle Malkin notices a theme in Katrina coverage: an anti-Bush slant!

Quelle surprise...

A CNN piece is indicative if a meme that is shared by other news organizations listed in Michelle's post:

Companies with ties to the Bush White House and the former head of FEMA are clinching some of the administration's first disaster relief and reconstruction contracts in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. At least two major corporate clients of lobbyist Joe Allbaugh, President Bush's former campaign manager and a former head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, have already been tapped to start recovery work along the battered Gulf Coast.

One is Shaw Group Inc. and the other is Halliburton Co. subsidiary Kellogg Brown and Root. Vice President Dick Cheney is a former head of Halliburton. [Ed: Dum-dum-duuuum!]

We all know how e-e-e-e-e-v-il Halliburton is. But all this undue attention may uncover associations unwelcome to a Bush-hating and Democrat-excusing media machine. As Michelle notes:

The Shaw Group, a multi-billion-dollar conglomerate, is headed by Jim Bernhard, the current chairman of the Louisiana Democratic Party. Bernhard worked tirelessly for Democrat Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Blanco's runoff campaign and served as co-chair of her transition team. Another Shaw executive was Blanco's campaign manager. Bernhard is back-scratching chums with Blanco, whom he has lent/offered the Shaw Group's corporate jets to on numerous occasions.

So, why was none of this mentioned in CNN's Bush-profiteers-are-evil narrative?

Ok, so on one hand, we have a media that seems to take amazing glee in drawing attention between ties between Halliburton and the Bush Administration; and on the other hand, that goes to some lengths to hide ties between the Shaw Group and the Blanco Administration and the Democratic Party. Got it.

If I were of a conspiritorial mind, I'd suggest that the manifest flaws in Governer Blanco's hurricane preparations and performance in the aftermath were intentional; that her incompetance was designed to maximize the destruction and suffering, so as to maximize the profits for her friend Jim Bernhard and the Shaw Group. That, in essence, Governer Blanco doesn't care about Black people.

Of course, I am not of a conspiratorial mind, and I refuse to accept such a proposition, since I don't think she's evil.

11:42 AM Sep 12, 2005

by Rob Ritchie

Jeff Goldstein provides a detailed and illuminating shellacking of this Newsweek article entitled "How Bush Blew It".

Jeff doesn't think he did, but more importantly, he shows how Newsweek doesn't tell the whole story.

5:51 PM Jun 19, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

By now, you've probably already read plenty of print and broadcast news stories that distort the 9/11 Commission's findings in order to manufacture a dispute between the Bush Administration and the Staff report.

Patterico over at OTLM has a terrific example from the LA Times. Go give it a read.

He sums up this way:

But you know how I learned about all this? I don't watch Chris Matthews's show. I learned it by reading the internet and watching Fox News. So when you look at what the bipartisan heads of the commission are saying about the media reports, this constitutes a clear and undeniable example of the mainstream media distorting the facts to hurt Bush -- and the truth comes out mainly in the alternative media of the internet and Fox.
My liberal friends insist on calling it Faux News (mimicking their idol, Al Franken). But then, they're dumbasses.

11:41 PM Jun 18, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Wow! Jason Van Steenwyk asks Why are reporters so stupid?

She doesn't know what's in the commission's report. She doesn't know what the Administration has been arguing all along. She doesn't know who Zarqawi is, apparently, or where he was in February 2003, before the war (along with a dozen other members of his cell who also found refuge in Iraq along with him). She doesn't grasp the English language--the primary tool of her trade--sufficiently to discern the difference between "relationship" and "connection," nor does she grasp the logic that makes "Al Qaeda" a distinctly different entity from "September 11th," sufficient to understand that one can have a relationship or connection with one, but not a direct connection with another, and that this is no contradiction.
Hey, do what you want, but I'd read the whole thing.

Litany of Stupidity

2:11 PM Jun 11, 2004by Rob Ritchie

Andrew Sullivan has a great collection of what some people were saying about President Reagan in the 1980's. He sums it up:

Rest in peace, Mr President. And know that after all these years, you were right - and all these people were clearly, emphatically, embarrassingly, wrong.

Take a look.

4:55 PM May 17, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Prison Abuse Trumps Saddam’s Mass Graves?

To illustrate a fraction of the bias problem, we counted the number of prisoner-abuse stories on NBC’s evening and morning news programs (NBC Nightly News and Today) from April 29, when the story emerged, through May 11. There were 58 morning and evening stories. Using the Nexis news-data retrieval system, we counted the number of stories on mass graves found in Iraq from the reign of Saddam Hussein in 2003 and 2004. The number of evening and morning news stories on those grim discoveries? Five.
On one hand, nobody expected any better of Saddam, but have reason to expect better from Americans.

On the other hand, shouldn't the severity of the issue be more important than your expectations about the perpetrators?

11:03 AM Mar 23, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

What to make of a couple of strange factual omissions in recent LA Times news stories?

Hat tip: Instapundit

Update: More here.

Crooked, Lying, redoux

11:57 AM Mar 11, 2004by Rob Ritchie

Hugh Hewitt has more to say about Kerry's remark yesterday:

Incredibly, Reuters joins the cover-up by refusing to report the Kerry outrage without spin. A true lead would state that, "Leaving a campaign event, and upon being encouraged to keep smiling by a supporter, Kerry lowered his voice and went on a tear:'Full quote.' Upon being challenged as attacking the president and vice-president, Kerry spokesmen first stated that Kerry was referring to talk-show hosts like Hannity and Limbaugh. The transparent silliness of that spin gave way to a broader fudge that Kerry was referring to "Republican critics" and the Republican attack machine." But the president's supporters were having none of this, and insist that any fair interpretation of the remark clearly conveyed Kerry's meaning.

Slandering Republican Presidents

1:03 PM Feb 29, 2004by Rob Ritchie

An informative post about Lincoln's relationship with his generals, which was recently besmerched in the New York Times. (Where else?)

It is true, of course, that politics always plays a part in war. In a democracy, it is necessary and right that the course of a war should, ultimately, be not just influenced but determined by politics. In the case of the Civil War, the great danger to the Union was that the Northern public would grow weary of the conflict and give up. By 1864, many in the North were beginning to think that the war was hopeless, and the Democratic Party adopted a defeatist platform, urging that the war be abandoned and the South be allowed to secede with the institution of slavery intact. The capture of Atlanta, along with other victories in the field that year, convinced most Northerners that the end was in sight and ensured Lincoln's re-election. For the Times to twist this well-known narrative into a cynical political ploy by President Lincoln--in the Times' words, "meddling" by a President with "little military expertise" who "waged war around re-election"--is contemptible.

Hat tip: Instapundit

11:03 AM Feb 3, 2004

by Rob Ritchie

Easterblogg reports that the National Academy of Sciences has issued a report that supports President Bush's significant (and oft-derided) Clear Skies initiative. Support by a major science organization for a controversial environmental plan should be big news, right?

New York Times and Washington Post editors both have placed denunciations of the Clear Skies proposal on the front page; but when the plan receives very prominent expert support, that's not news. Some studies from the same organization, studies that discomfit the Bush White House, have gone directly to page one--for instance, a National Research Council finding that the fuel economy of SUVs and pickup trucks could be increased was (deservedly) a headline story. But a major scientific study backing a controversial Bush position is quietly buried. Now, what's the word I am looking for?

12:03 PM Sep 10, 2003

by Rob Ritchie

Andrew Sullivan attacks Fred Kaplan's anti-Bush spinning:

Almost a year ago this week, the president extended his hand to the U.N. Or doesn't that count? It makes you wish that the Bush of Kaplan's fevered imagination had simply ignored the U.N., gone into Iraq a few months after Afghanistan, given Saddam much less chance to prepare, and our rivals in Europe less of a chance to keep the terror-masters informed. At least then Bush would have deserved some of this now fashionable obloquy. But no good strategy goes un-attacked, does it? A useful lesson, this, about some foreign policy liberals. Ignore them: they'll attack you. Do what they want: they'll attack you anyway. If it means a grotesque distortion of history, so be it.
Go, and Read

BUZZZ!!! Nice try, thanks for playing!

6:41 PM Sep 8, 2003by Rob Ritchie

Yesterday, the Guardian published their predictions of what Bush's address to the nation would contain:

George Bush will attempt tonight to convince the American people that he has a workable 'exit strategy' to free his forces from the rapidly souring conflict in Iraq, as Britain prepares to send in thousands more troops to reinforce the faltering coalition effort.

What maroons! Read the rest, then compare it with what the president actually said:

America has done this kind of work before. Following World War II, we lifted up the defeated nations of Japan and Germany, and stood with them as they built representative governments. We committed years and resources to this cause. And that effort has been repaid many times over in three generations of friendship and peace. America today accepts the challenge of helping Iraq in the same spirit -- for their sake, and our own.

Johnny Depp Strikes Back

2:13 PM Sep 5, 2003by Rob Ritchie

I am reassigning the category of this story to "Media Mendacity" based this response by Johnny Depp:

"What I was saying was that, compared to Europe, America is a very young country and we are still growing as a nation," he said. "My deepest apologies to those who were offended, affected, or hurt by this insanely twisted deformation of my words and intent."
I'm going to take his words at face value. He seems like an intelligent man and if he was making an extended metaphor, it might have been more than the Stern reporter could grasp.

Plus, no doubt, the reporter wanted to print another story of an American who says bad stuff about his country.

When a media outlet takes stuff out of context, it isn't fair to hold it against the person.

They do it all the time to Dubya, and I hate it then too.

2:24 PM Sep 3, 2003

by Rob Ritchie

I respect Johnny Depp's skills as an actor, and he's made some movies that I really like.

But this article is an example of what happens when a celebrity's pride in his abilities and opinions become overweaning.

"America is dumb, it's like a dumb puppy that has big teeth that can bite and hurt you, aggressive"
On one hand, I blame the press for asking his opinion on issues upon which he is not an expert. I'll bet there are plenty of ex-pat businessmen and spouses and plumbers (ok, maybe not plumbers) they could ask for opinions, but they go to celebrities, as if their status somehow gives them greater insight into world events than the hoi polloi.

I'm not saying that Johnny Depp isn't entitled to an opinion. But come on, does "America is Dumb" seem so sagacious, so penetrating, so illuminating that it actually needs to see print?

Or is it just some facile dribble from someone who feels his opinions must conform to the expectations of the European artistes who surround him?

Ah, this is just becoming another one of those "Hollywood stars are idiots" rants you can find almost anywhere on the Internet.

But I really am curious as to what motivates celebrities to say exactly what a magazine wants them to, regardless of how it makes them look or how it reflects on their intelligence.

Update: New Information

6:07 PM Sep 2, 2003

by Rob Ritchie

Your opinion of the 10 Commandments debate depends on where you get your news...

The New York Times bears false witness

As the monument was trundled away Wednesday morning, if you were unlucky enough to be watching TV, you saw that all the 24-hour news cameras stayed focused on that one guy who went berserk, screaming insanely, spraying saliva into the sunlight, apoplectic -- and oh, so photogenic. The majority of protesters, who just stood there praying calmly, did not make for compelling video, and therefore did not get on your TV screen.

Who said cameras don't lie?