Marking the one-year anniversary of longtime smoker Peter Jennings’ death from lung cancer, ABC’s Dr. Timothy Johnson wrote up a prescription as outdated and ineffective as bleeding a patient: growing government. “At the government level there are three proven techniques. One is to raise prices by increasing taxes, the second is to limit access by minors, and the third is to conduct mass media campaigns,” Johnson said on the August 7 “World News with Charles Gibson.” Although ABC's medical editor went on to slam government for having “dropped the ball” on his prescription, anchor Charles Gibson didn’t include anyone with... continue reading
Leave it to “60 Minutes” to find a negative development in a tide of American prosperity lifting all boats. “The Joneses, that mythic family America vainly tries to keep up with, are setting an impossible standard,” correspondent Morley Safer complained on the August 6 program. “It’s the house, dammit. The size of the average new house in this country has grown almost 50 percent in the last 30 years while the average family has shrunk.” “Like some alien weed, houses are growing from sea to shining sea,” the Canadian-born journalist said before opening a story with footage of a house... continue reading
Disgraced Reuters freelance photographer Adnan Hajj was dismissed by the wire service for altering a photograph of a Lebanese skyline to make the damage caused by Israel look worse (big hat tip to Charles Johnston at Little Green Footballs , who first uncovered the fake photo). More photos by Hajj are being scrutinized, and at least one other photo has been proven to have been digitally altered. But before his disgrace, Hajj made the front page, above-the-fold of Saturday's New York Times with a photo of what the picture caption claims is a "wounded civilian" (but with Hajj we can... continue reading
Middle East-based reporter Neil MacFarquhar files " Arab World Finds Icon in Leader of Hezbollah " from Damascus on Monday (with Hassan Fattah contributing reporting from Beirut). Again, MacFarquhar sees things from the pro-Arab, anti-Israel perspective. (Last week, MacFarquhar lamented on Charlie Rose's talk show how "in 40 years, we have gone from Kennedy milk to the Bush administration rushing bombs to this part of the world. And it just erodes and erodes and erodes America's reputation.") Today he writes: "The success or failure of any cease-fire in Lebanon will largely hinge on the opinion of one figure: Sheik Hassan... continue reading
Has CNN’s reporting on food gone to the dogs? The audience of the August 5 edition of “In the Money” might suspect as much. On that program business contributor Andy Serwer narrated a “Brainstorm” segment looking at the “latest trends and innovations the food industry has in store for you” such as “foods you can eat along with your pet.” Foods you can scarf down with Skippy while channel-surfing past CNN on your way to Animal Planet? Tell me more. “For a look at some hot new products appearing on a store shelf near you, we recently headed to a... continue reading
The CBS “Evening News” recently hinted that more regulation, not less, is needed to improve the nation’s electrical grid. Reporter Trish Regan’s August 3 story displayed a chart showing an increase in the number of blackouts in the past few years. Regan then complained that after years of gradual price increases, many major electrical utilities are now increasing rates dramatically, including a 72-percent rate hike by the BGE, the utility that supplies power to metropolitan Baltimore. “The industry defends its hikes, saying prices were artificially low for decades because of government regulation,” Regan said, introducing a sound bite from Bill... continue reading
"Cuba Perks Up as Venezuela's Lifeline Foils U.S. Embargo," blared the headline for Juan Forero's page A3 story in the August 4 New York Times . Relax, fair Times reader. The Cuban economy won't collapse under Raul Castro: BOGOTÁ, Colombia, Aug. 3 - As Raúl Castro takes up the task of leading Cuba in place of his brother Fidel, there is, surprisingly, one less thing he may have to worry about: the state of Cuba's economy. Forero goes on to hint that Cuba's woes as resulting from Bush administration policies, not a fundamentally unsound socialist economy: The credit goes, in... continue reading
The Times has four contributors to Line of Fire , its new blog about the conflict in Israel and Lebanon (Times Select $ may be required), none of whom line up on Israel's side. Gershom Gorenberg, Jerusalem bureau chief for The Forward newspaper, is at the top with the naval-gazing "No Easy Answers," and doesn't come up with any hard ones either, simply taking the pacifist take that there must be a better way than Israel counterattacking: "If, for instance, Hezbollah's initial attack on July 12 was a 'deliberate provocation' - as one strategic analyst told me, defending the government's... continue reading
The bitter Senate Democratic primary race in Connecticut between Sen. Joe Lieberman and anti-war rich guy Ned Lamont has generated even more controversy thanks to an offensiveposting at the left-wing Huffington Post blog by blogger Jane Hamsher. But " In Connecticut, Bloggers Throw Political Curves And Spitballs ," by reporters Mike McIntire and Jennifer Medina, takes its sweet time getting to the point. A caption to a photo of " Lieberman-in-blackface " blogger Jane Hamsher simply says "Blogs by Jane Hamsher send a pro-Lamont message in the Senate race," and the first four paragraphs say nothing about the reason Hamsher... continue reading
Are you a Republican politician yearning for approval by The Washington Post? All it takes is standing up for tax increases or for hiking the minimum wage. In separate articles in the August 3 Post, reporters Jeffrey Birnbaum and Michael Shear used the “moderate” label to describe Republicans amenable to either tax hikes or minimum wages increases. “Prodded by moderate Republicans eager to undercut criticism by Democrats that GOP economic programs overwhelmingly favor the rich, the House approved” legislation gradually phasing in a $7.25-an-hour minimum wage, Birnbaum wrote. Elsewhere in the August 3 paper, reporter Michael Shear painted conservatives in... continue reading