Monday, May 16, 2005

Just what is it with the media, anyway?

An idiot I know likes to say

the establishment media are more fairly characterized by their pack mentality, the continuous dumbing down of the media product; and the inept laziness of their reporters who are willing to report whatever political spin meisters spoon-feed them, regardless of their sources partisan bent or accuracy of their story. While all of these factors are lamentable, none has anything to do with "bias".
How does this explain that in 2002... the establishment media were loathe to rebroadcast images of 9/11, specifically the tragic video of trapped victims leaping to their deaths from the upper floors. Their reasoning was that to do so would unnecessarily inflame American passions against the Muslim populace.

But in 2003... the establishment media was both quick and eager to broadcast humliating, but hardly abusive, photos from inside Abu Ghraib prison. The result of that decision was an uprising of inflamed Muslim passions against the United States.

And in 2004... the establishment media broadcast - and subsequently tried to spread - a story composed entirely of falsified documentation and the fradulently acquired reaction to those documents. The purpose of this story was to create an uprising of inflamed passions in the American electorate against George W. Bush.

And just days ago, establishment media outlet NEWS WEAK magazine published a story of interrogators at Guantanamo descrating the Koran by flushing it down a toilet. They published - and far too much later retracted - on the strength of an anonymous source passing on an unverified allegation. And what happened? Inflamed passions among Muslims in Afghanistan led to riots and 15 deaths.

Now they are trying to sell the rioting, and the resulting casualties, as unpredictable.

Nothing to see here, ladies and gentlemen... just keep moving along...

Friday, April 22, 2005

The Gift That Keeps On Giving

Do you think when Howard Dean says things like this:

"We need to kick the money changers out of the temple and restore moral values to America," Dean said, drawing roars from the crowd.
he ever stops to consider how his party's personal ATM, George Soros, acuumulated his vast wealth?

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Just What I Asked For, But Not What I Wanted

An editorial in today's Wall Street Journal (available at Opinion Journal here, registration required), quotes the New York Times from December 31, 2003:

"After an egregiously long delay, Attorney General John Ashcroft finally did the right thing yesterday when he recused himself from the investigation into who gave the name of a CIA operative to the columnist Robert Novak. Mr. Ashcroft turned the inquiry over to his deputy, who quickly appointed a special counsel."

In the recent annals of press freedom, there are few more regrettable sentences than those two from a December 31, 2003, editorial in the New York Times. The special counsel that the Times was cheering on, Patrick Fitzgerald, is now threatening a Times reporter with jail, and in a way that jeopardizes the entire press corps.

The Times, along with almost the entire MSM, clamored for two months for that special prosecutor. They crowed when law and order hardliner Patrick Fitzgerald was announced. And since, they've been waiting, slavering, drooling, for the indictment of whatever White House rapscallion is ultimately responsible for exposing Joe Wilson's wife as an undercover CIA agent.

What they've done here, in gaining what will ultimately be an unfulfilling and pyrrhic victory, is invite upon themselves the most devastating attack on the confidentiality of sources in the American history.

You need to read the editorial in full to understand it (and while you're at it, try this for additional background), but unless they testify under Fitzgerald's subpoena, or the Supreme Court overturns the D.C. Circuit, Times reporter Judith Miller and TIME Magazine's Matthew Cooper are going to jail.

The NYT and TIME are going to fight for their writers' right to protect sources, as they rightly should, but why has it come to this?

Because the New York Times, and its liberal, establishment media brethren, decided on December 31, 2003, that the Justice Department exposing the leak was more important than a conservative columnist protecting his source.

Because conservative columnists are expendable!

And now that it's less important to protect sources, the serpent the Times let loose has come back to bite them.

Poetic is what it is.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Yeoman! Sidecar!

Going back to ages past, my best friend and I would praise any particularly brave, foolhardy and generally ballsy act by anyone in our circle, or the world in general, by repeating the order we always imagined Captain Kirk shouting just before undertaking an act of similar chutzpah:

"Yeoman!" Kirk would shout, snapping his fingers with relish, "Sidecar!"

Because that's what he was gonna need to carry his cojones into battle.

The Reverend Jesse Jackson sits in the captain's chair today. Because, for good or ill (and trust me... ill) he's sporting a pair of big brass ones this morning.

Thanks to Paul at Wizbang, I found an excellent piece by Michael Barone at published on February 21.

And I also found the same column attributed to Jesse in today's February 22 Chicago Sun-Times.

Now, from either side of the political aisle, the ideas in the column are sound. That likely accounts for what made this brazen theft so attractive to the Reverend.

But how could he have been so foolish as to think that he wouldn't be caught out? In today's environment, with journalists, anchormen, editors and pundits falling from grace faster than an acre of Amazon rain forest, what has possessed Jesse to make him believe that he could get away with it?

What, other than brash stupidity and an arrogant certainty that he stands above such petty criticisms, could be the cause?

Update: Apparently the cause is stupidity and laziness. It appears now that the Sun-Times ran the column under the wrong byline. I found a print edition of the Bright One and sure enough, Michael Barone's name and face head the column. If I had the technology to scan or photograph the page and share it, I would.

Now that it's clear that a good proofreader would solve this problem, it's not nearly as fun to think about.


Thursday, February 17, 2005

Fed By The Hand That Bites Them

Captain Ed notes an article in the National Review Online exposing the fact that terrorist abetter Lynne Stewart's defense was funded in no small part by liberal financier and Democrat kingmaker George Soros.

Soros spent over $25 million of his vast fortune on the last presidential campaign. He backed Dean, then Kerry, directly. He funded numerous 527 organizations such as the Voter Fund and America Coming Together.

If the Democrats are going to make any political inroads in 2006, they are going to have to sell the people that they aren't soft on terror.

It's going be very difficult when their biggest financier is paying to defend terrorist sympathizers.

What makes this even worse for the Dems is that in 2004, Dr. Dean and the Dems made much of Bob Perry's contributions to both the Swift Boat Veterans and to George Bush as evidence that there was illegal collaboration between the Bush campaign and the SBVT.

This is a HUGE brickbat that Soros has just handed the GOP to swing at him.

And at anyone who takes his money.

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

What a shocker

USA Today reports that kids who were educated in the high self esteem, feel good about yourself 1980s, the twentysomething Millenials who are now joining the workforce, are collapsing at the first sign of negative feedback from the real world.

Well, color me shocked.

For 20 years, instead of teaching our children basic skills like how to properly read, write and speak English, how to make change for a dollar, and imparting to them the critical thinking skills needed to solve problems, the American public education system has concerned itself more with making certain that our children are happy. That they should be proud not because they actually achieved something, but because they made any kind of effort at all.

And of course, this high self-esteem, awarded for precisely nothing, turns out in the real world to be worth just that: nothing.

"I often get students in graduate school doing doctorates who made straight A's all their lives, and the first time they get tough feedback, the kind you need to develop skills," says Deborah Stipek, dean of education at Stanford University. "I have a box of Kleenex in my office because they haven't dealt with it before."

Warmest congratulations to the geniuses of Educational Theory who generated this load of horseshit and foisted it on the next greatest generation. It takes hubris to disregard the common sense notions of generations.

What have we learned, class?

Until a student is given a challenge, he won't bother to rise to it.

If a teacher praises everything, a student will settle for anything.

Self-esteem cannot be awarded. It must be earned.

If you can't earn it, you can't own it. If you don't own it, you won't care for it. If you don't care for it, it will be lost or taken away. It does not matter what "it" is - this is a universal truth.

Sweat, pain and frustration are the tools God uses to make you grow up.

Here endeth the lesson. Now go to work.