Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Jon Stewart takes on Nancy Pelosi

Denver Post: Sex, Drugs and News

The New York Times reports:

"The Post has had two pot critics on its roster since it created a spinoff site, The Cannabist, in December. (The newspaper is searching for a third, as well as a sex columnist to write about pot and intimacy.) While adding the jobs — particularly for a mainstream newspaper — created something of a stir, Ricardo Baca, the newspaper’s newly appointed cannabis editor (and a longtime staff member) said it simply made journalistic sense. “We have a restaurant critic and wine reviewers,” he said. “We have an award-winning craft beer blog. From that logic you do need a pot critic — and maybe a few of them.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

The media's "Higher Agenda" Under the Guise of "Not Enough Time."

Exccerpt from an article by Berit Kjos(2002):

Matthew Shepard. What does that name mean to the American people? Hatred, torture, homophobia, sexism, political advocacy...?
Few Americans could miss the shocking details of this young homosexual's horrible death in 1998. According to a newspaper data base, the media published the story 3007 times -- 45 times in the New York Times alone.[4] It stirred a national scandal and made Matthew a martyr for the cause of gay rights, hate-crimes legislation and anti-Christian sentiment. Ignoring his mother's plea not to politicize her son's death, reporters from coast to coast seemed to revel in a sensational story tailor-made for its liberal political campaign.
Did you read about Jesse Dirkhising's torture and murder at the hands of two homosexual lovers eleven months later? Probably not. The thirteen-year-old boy was drugged, strapped down, sodomized, tortured and killed by two adults living in an apartment which "reeked of excrement and was littered with drug paraphernalia and residue." Driven by sadistic passions, the men sealed the boy's mouth with duct tape and tormented him until he died. 
Like Matthew's murder, it was a horrible crime -- almost unfit to print. But that's not why most newspapers across the country refused to tell the story. The real reason? It wasn't politically correct. As journalist Andrew Sullivan wrote in the wake of Jesse's torturous murder, "the media only coughed up 46 stories." (Robert McCain, Washington Times, 03-23-01). This gross imbalance shows the driving priorities of the powerful social advocates who control the mainstream media.

Reporter Robert McCain began calling various networks to find an answer. When asked if the disparity in news coverage might suggest a political preference, a CBS spokeswoman answered, "Absolutely not." She added, "We only have twenty-two minutes on CBS Evening News. We can't cover every story that happens in the country every day."
Andrew Sullivan, a homosexual British journalist based in Washington, was more honest. "The answer is politics," he wrote in the liberal New Republic. "The Shepard case was hyped for political reasons: to build support for inclusion of homosexuals in a federal hate-crimes law. The Dirkhising case was ignored for political reasons: squeamishness about reporting a story that could feed anti-gay prejudice, and the lack of any pending interest-group legislation to hang a story on." 
That's it. A new politically correct criteria for good and bad news determines whether a shocking story wins the headlines, is squeezed into the back pages or misses the mark altogether. The real issues are: Does the story... 
  • Further the global agenda?
  • Match the values of media leaders?
  • Bring financial rewards?  
  • Help silence the opposition? 
The masses, lulled to complacency by thrills and trivia, may never know the truths about the shadowy and manipulative media agenda. Its participation in the transformation of America has helped sever America's public consciousness from God's absolute truth. And with each incremental step onward, it leads us closer to decadence and docile consent to a new world order.   

Melissa Francis: ‘I Was Silenced’ at CNBC for Criticizing ObamaCare

Thursday, November 6, 2014

“We don’t know what he (President Obama) is going to do executive order-wise

on immigration, but if he makes a major move along the lines of what we’ve been hearing, which is to give some sort of status to keep millions in this country with some sort of special visa, that would be like, just popping a grenade and throwing it in the middle of the Senate floor.”  --Candy Crowley (CNN)

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Chris Matthews on Obama Not Understading what "Common Ground" is

Chris Matthews
"What bothered me about him [today] he keeps talking about common ground. Damn it, there's very little common ground between left and right, but what there is is compromise. You do something for me on minimum wage, I'll do something for you in corporate tax reform. You give me something on corporate tax reform and I'll get rid of some of the loopholes or I'll do something on trade for you. He never talks about trading and compromising, he always talks about common ground. Well, damn it, you can not run a government on common ground.
He misses the main point of politics which is to be a politician and to trade. Okay, you want this? You want to take care of people who have been here illegally for 20, 30 years? Here's what I want. No more illegal hiring, and that's all in the Senate bill. But he won't sell the compromise. There's something in this guy that just plays to his constituency and acts like there is no other room out there. And that's going to be a collision at the end of this year like you have never seen. I do believe it will be like waving a red flag in front of the bull. I think Mitch McConnell is headed for a fight with the president."

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Krauthammer: If someone wants to cry racist "I will not give them the dignity of a response."

Charles Krauthammer
  “It’s not just that they are the party in government, they are the party of government,” he continued. “It’s not just their values are wrong, their ambitions for government are wrong. They can’t run the damn thing! And that’s why there’s this huge resentment against the Democratic Party and that’s why they’ve got to start calling people names.”

"I think that when you’re accused of being a racist, you don’t even dignify the accusation with a response because then you’re conceding the premise. I have to prove I’m not a racist. I oppose the president because of his policies, I have since the beginning of his administration. If someone wants to imply on account of his race, I will not give them the dignity of a response."

Sarah Palin: Those haters out there. They don't understand that it invigorates me

Sarah Palin
Asked during an interview on the Fox Business Network if “hatred” towards her from critics has driven her out of political life, the onetime Alaska governor said that opponents actually have the opposite effect on her ambitions. 

No, bless their hearts, those haters out there. They don't understand that it invigorates me, it wants me to get out there and defend the innocent. It makes me want to work so hard for justice in this country,” she said. “So hey, the more they are pouring on, the more I'm gonna bug the crap out of them by being out there with the voice, with the message, hopefully running for office in the future too.” (SOURCE: NBC News)

Monday, October 27, 2014

Considerata On Journalists and Experts

Condensed from a 2013 article by  Tom Verenna 

When it comes to defining ‘scholars’, journalists seem to have the hardest time actually determining who fits the bill; those that actually have earned that title are confused, for instance, with scientists (and are sometimes labeled as such), whereas those with no credibility whatsoever are given the esteemed honor of being a ‘scholar’ or ‘historian’ or ‘expert’.

First, a layperson who self-publishes a book on something isn’t an ‘expert’.  They may be considered an enthusiast, an amateur, a hobbyist, a thrill-seeker.  These are polite titles.  More often than not, however, people who only self-publish do so because they do not want to have their ideas vetted by pesky things like editors, peers, or actual experts.  So less polite, but certainly more accurate, titles for many of these sorts of individuals might be ‘conspiracy theorist’, ‘loon’, or ‘Indiana Jones Wanna-be’ (actually this isn’t a complement).

Second, let us stop calling the self-published tomes of these sorts of people, who have zero credibility, ‘theses’.  This isn’t a thesis. To a layperson, with no background in the relevant field, any claim or argument that is new to them will appear to be ground-breaking.  That doesn’t mean that it is actually new, or useful, or even correct.

The purpose of peer review, of academic vetting, is to determine how well an argument or hypothesis can withstand criticism.  If the author of this book does not bother to go through this process, even unofficially, by having his book examined by experts prior to publication, then s/he does not have any grounds to claim that it is anything spectacular. That isn’t to say that an uncredentialed person cannot produce a solid book on a subject.  It may actually be ground-breaking, it may be earth-shattering, but if it hasn’t been vetted by other people with credentials then there is no means by which one can claim that it is.

Fair and Balanced??
Third, if you are ever unsure about whether or not someone has produced a new theory, and you are curious if this individual is trustworthy, as a journalist you have several options: (1) Google their CV—if they have a CV, check to see if they have some credibility (are academically published, have formal education or training in the relevant fields, etc…), (2) if you don’t trust Google, ask other scholars (your local University has them; they are underpaid—but they will help you), (3) engage with the material yourself (instead of, you know, just republishing the PR Web article or press release without any critical thoughts about it), (4) provide a basic caveat emptor that you are (presumably, as a journalist) not qualified to judge the arguments in the book and request your readers investigate the issue on their own critically, (5) don’t automatically label them as a Scholar, but look for signs (do they have a graduate degree or doctorate? Have they at least been published academically? Have they some engagement with scholars in a critical way? Are other scholars—not laypeople—praising their work? Aim for at least two of these three things before giving an individual press time).

What is perhaps most important to remember is that what you write will resonate with laypeople—your work, as journalists for professional news outlets, gives legitimacy to an idea.  So choose wisely and carefully.  It is your responsibility to examine the individual and the sources and their theories before you write on them.  If you fail to do so, you fail your audience.  The second you publish that article, it will be shared one-hundred, one-thousand, perhaps tens-of-thousands of times during its lifespan (before being dumped into a pay-wall archive).  So please, for the love of Pete, take the time needed to make sure that you are not putting a crank and their crazy conspiracy theory on a pedestal before you publish.  There is nothing more embarrassing for a journalist, I imagine, than highlighting a concept that is absolutely beyond credible.  And it drives people like me, who take history seriously, to drink.

Cross Posted Here

Friday, October 24, 2014

Rush Limbaugh on Carol Costello: "Now, here's Carol Costello, a supposed feminist, a supposed opponent of violence against women.

I mean, would just be angry as hell if any other woman had been treated this way. Had they been attacked and it was on audiotape and she was playing it, she would be righteously indignant and probably blaming the Republican War on Women. But here she's eating it up. Here she just loves it, a supposed feminist, a supposed opponent of violence against women, presented an audiotape of a young woman describing being attacked and beaten by a bunch of drunken men as the most delicious thing she had ever heard in her life. "