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The Best of CyberAlert from Over the Summer--8/29/2003


1. The Best of CyberAlert from Over the Summer
"The Best of CyberAlert." With people going on vacations throughout the summer, for the Labor Day weekend a list of CyberAlert items some may have missed -- and others can now re-live -- the 24 articles that stand the test of a few weeks and remain interesting or relevant to ongoing topics.


 

The Best of CyberAlert from Over the
Summer

Starting in early July and moving forward, below are the table of contents summaries for the best CyberAlert items from over the summer, each followed by links to them as posted online:

-- July 7: Most Homeless Ever, Numbers "Not Seen Since Great Depression"
Last week CBS and NBC simultaneously discovered a new crisis of a supposedly record number of homeless families. "There are now more homeless families on the street than ever before," reporter Lee Cowan declared on Thursday's CBS Evening News. Cowan also hyperbolically claimed: "There are more homeless families now in Manhattan than since the Great Depression." Not to be outdone, NBC's Hockenberry insisted on Friday's Dateline that the homeless in New York City are now "in numbers it's estimated not seen since the Great Depression." Although NBC had promoted a look at "an American nightmare: The new homeless," two of Hockenberry's "homeless" families had homes. One man was just afraid of falling behind on mortgage payments and losing his large suburban home; another man earned $38,000 but decided to live in a motor home. And his homeless woman walked around talking on a cell phone. www.mediaresearch.org

-- July 8: Howard Dean No Liberal to Washington Post, Really a Conservative
Howard Dean has emerged as the hero of left-wing Democrats, but reporters are reluctant to describe Dean as a liberal and instead go out of their way to dissuade readers from believing any such notion. The word "liberal" did not appear until three-fourths the way into Sunday's Washington Post profile of Dean by reporter Evelyn Nieves, and then only in a quote from an expert denying he is one: "'His being called a liberal is one of the great white lies of the campaign,' said Tom Salmon, a fellow Democrat and governor of Vermont for two terms during the Nixon-Ford era. 'He's a rock-solid fiscal conservative.'" www.mediaresearch.org

-- July 9: ABC and NBC Paint Bush Concession as Undermining Case for War
President Bush may have overreached when he cited how Iraq had received uranium from Niger, but in reporting Tuesday night on the White House's admission that the charge was based on forged documents, ABC's Peter Jennings and NBC's Tom Brokaw also overreached in delivering broad generalities about how the concession undermined a premise for the war. Jennings charged: "The Bush administration admits that a vital argument for going to war against Iraq was not true." Brokaw asserted: "There are new questions about his justification for war with Iraq." But as CBS's David Martin pointed out: "Both [Colin] Powell and the CIA believed then and believe now there is plenty of other evidence to show Saddam was still pursuing a nuclear weapon." Jennings also rued how Bush is too popular for the admission to hurt him. www.mediaresearch.org

-- July 10: Jennings and Reynolds Belittle Meagerness of Tax Cut
ABC's Peter Jennings belittled the tax cut on Tuesday night, asking: "Will three extra dollars stimulate the national economy?" Dean Reynolds talked to a couple who appreciated their $15 more a week and a woman who dismissed as "nothing" the $3 more she will now be able to keep every two weeks. Dean quoted experts on both sides of the argument about whether the tax cut will boost the economy, but he ended his piece by ridiculing the amount of the tax cut. Referring to the husband in the couple getting $15 per week, Reynolds snidely observed: "He may use some of his windfall to restore that '57 Chevy in his garage. And at 15 bucks a week, he figures the job would be done in about 20 years." www.mediaresearch.org

-- July 10: CNN's Brown Spread "Bush Knew" Web Rumor After It Was Retracted
When castigating George Bush for passing on bogus information about uranium from Niger, Aaron Brown last night passed along a one-source Web story he should have known was false since it had been retracted four hours earlier. Brown had not cited his source. Read the MRC's Media Reality Check "Quick Take" updating today's CyberAlert. Plus, the retraction from the CapitolHillBlue.com Web site and a commentary by Scott Hogenson of the MRC's CNSNews.com: "What Did CNN Know and When Did They Know It?" www.mediaresearch.org

Follow-ups:
www.mediaresearch.org
www.mediaresearch.org

-- July 11: CBS Finds More "Hunger in the Heartland" -- Once Again in Ohio
A CBS promo promised a look on Thursday night at "hunger in the heartland," but it seems that to CBS America's "heartland" encompasses just two communities in Ohio barely 50 miles apart. Just seven months after 60 Minutes II discovered hunger in Marietta, Ohio, on Thursday night the CBS Evening News delivered a peek at supposed hunger on Logan, Ohio. CBS's Cynthia Bowers reported: "Twice a month in this small town on the edge of Appalachia, groceries are given away. You could call it a 'line of the times,' because in a growing number of American communities making ends meet means waiting for a handout." Bowers conveyed an exaggerated claim as fact: "Each year an estimated 30 million Americans go hungry." www.mediaresearch.org

-- July 14: By 2-to-1, Public Sees Liberal Over Conservative Bias
"Most Americans (53%) believe that news organizations are politically biased, while just 29% say they are careful to remove bias from their reports. When it comes to describing the press, twice as many say news organizations are 'liberal' (51%) than 'conservative,'" a just-released Pew Research Center for the People and the Press survey discovered. Even a plurality of Democrats see a liberal slant over a conservative one. www.mediaresearch.org

-- July 21: Russert Rails Against Deficit, Then Demands More Spending
On Sunday's Meet the Press, Tim Russert scolded House Speaker Dennis Hassert for allowing the deficit to grow so large and suggested that in retrospect it would have been better for the tax cuts to have been smaller, but then he wanted to know if Hastert would support a Senate effort to "correct" the non-inclusion of low-income non-taxpayers in the expanded child credit and pressed Hastert to agree with a plan to hike spending on AmeriCorps by $100 million. Russert preposterously described the far-left Center on Budget and Policy Priorities as a group "which consists of Democrats and Republicans." www.mediaresearch.org

-- July 22: CBS "Exclusive" Features Iraqi Men Who Are Killing U.S. Soldiers
File under "Journalist First, American Second." Monday's CBS Evening News featured an "exclusive" report from David Hawkins in Iraq where, at an undisclosed location with their weapons on display, he talked to several disguised men who are actively hunting down and killing U.S. servicemen. Hawkins relayed how the enemy operatives maintained "they're not doing it for love of Saddam -- but instead for God and their country." www.mediaresearch.org

-- July 23: Couric Asks Lynch's Doctor If Rescue Was "Pentagon Propaganda"
Katie Couric on Tuesday morning tried to drag the Army doctor, who took care of ex-POW Jessica Lynch, into commenting on the left-wing, anti-U.S. military spin of ABC News and the BBC about how the rescue of her from a Nasiriyah hospital was just a staged "Pentagon propaganda" event for the cameras, a tale Couric's NBC colleague Jim Avila had discredited in late May. www.mediaresearch.org

-- July 25: Reuters Changes Reporter's Story to Match Liberal Spin
Reuters apparently decided a contributor's story wasn't hostile enough to the U.S. military and condemnatory of how the Jessica Lynch rescue was turned into a Pentagon "propaganda" offensive, so someone at Reuters just added the opinionated language -- all to the consternation of the reporter who didn't write it but got blamed for it because her byline was on the story. www.mediaresearch.org

-- July 25: More Fretting About Unfairness of Who Gets Child Credit Hike
President Bush touting the implementation on Thursday of the $400 increase in the child credit for all income tax payers led CNN and ABC to deliver yet another round of stories promoting and supporting the liberal agenda line on how the poor are unfairly left out, complete with anecdotes from victims. CNN's Kathleen Koch showcased "single mother Ayyisha Turner, who makes $17,000 a year," and who was "so confident" that "the money was coming, that she already spent it." Later, ABC's Peter Jennings asserted: "Mr. Bush has been criticized by Democrats and others for not extending more assistance to some of the poorest families." Terry Moran also found a victim, who pleaded: "Okay, I know I'm a little guy, but be fair with me." Moran misleading insisted that "wealthier families" get the tax credit increase. But they do not. www.mediaresearch.org

-- July 28: CBS & ABC Again Mis-Portray Liberal Activist Seniors as Typical
In the wake of the House passing a bill on Friday to allow the re-importation of prescription drugs from other nations, CBS and ABC again showcased liberal, big government spending senior activists, but cast them as just average seniors struggling to afford their prescriptions. www.mediaresearch.org

-- July 30: Brian Williams Contends NBC's "Traps and Filters" Kill All Bias
At NBC News, Brian Williams seriously argued, "traps and filters" eliminate all the liberal bias. Comedy Central's Jon Stewart on Tuesday asked Williams about the presence of liberal media bias. Williams asserted that he's "a registered independent" and doesn't even tell his family for whom he votes in order to "give them all plausible deniability." Williams also insisted that he can report the news "down the middle like an umpire" because everything he says on the air first "goes through...checks and balances" as "we have an inordinate number of editors. Every word I write, before it goes on air, goes through all kinds of traps and filters and it's read by all kinds of different people who point out bias." www.mediaresearch.org

-- August 1: ABC's Cochran Trumpets Hillary's Victory Over Conservatives
Hillary the Great. Without any peg to a news event, on Thursday night ABC News championed the success of Senator Hillary Clinton in beating her conservative critics. World News Tonight anchor Woodruff cited her book and trumpeted how she's sold "more than a million copies in the U.S. alone." He insisted: "There's no disputing her ambition, only how far it will take her." John Cochran then looked at how "some conservative worry that attempts to demonize her have backfired." Cochran soon celebrated how "she has not only signed 20,000 copies of her book, she has also put her name on more legislation than any other Senator in this Congress," as if staffers signing-off on having her name added to co-sponsor lists takes any effort. www.mediaresearch.org

-- August 1: CEO of DC's PBS Station Mad About Day Laborers Next to Studio
PBS cares about the riff-raff and plight of undocumented aliens and condemning mean-spirited conservatives for not caring about them -- think of many prime time PBS specials on those being "left behind" and lectures from Bill Moyers -- but not when they actually have to see them next door. This week, Sharon Percy Rockefeller, CEO of WETA, the Washington, DC PBS station really located in Arlington County, Virginia, lashed out at the county board for voting to build a pavilion, to house day laborers waiting for work, next door to WETA's studios where the PBS NewsHour and Washington Week are taped. www.mediaresearch.org

-- August 4: Dean No Liberal, He's a 'No Jews Allowed' Bush-Like Conservative
Before former Vermont Governor Howard Dean can be painted as a far-left ideologue, the national media are coming to his aide, penning stories about how he's not only not liberal, he's really a conservative. "He remains a fiscal conservative," declared a New York Times story last Wednesday. Then on Sunday, the front page of the Washington Post carried this unequivocal headline: "As Governor, Dean Was Fiscal Conservative." In Time, John Cloud argued that "the truth" is that Dean "is a rock-ribbed budget hawk, a moderate on gays and guns, and a true lefty on only a few issues." Cloud insisted that "Dean, who has been compared so often to George McGovern and Ralph Nader, is far more like George W. Bush." Cloud's evidence: Dean's patrician upbringing in a Republican family who "belonged to the super-exclusive Maidstone golf club, which for decades had no minority or Jewish members." www.mediaresearch.org

-- August 11: Couric Tags Arnold as Nazi's Son, Then Condemns "Dirty" Tactics
Katie Couric certainly has chutzpah. On Thursday's Today, beating Democratic operatives to the punch, Couric reminded viewers of Arnold Schwarzenegger's "baggage," from "smoking marijuana" to being "the son of a Nazi Party member" to "allegations" that he's "sexually harassed women and committed infidelity." But on Monday morning, she dared to scold Republican gubernatorial candidate Bill Simon as she cited a newspaper report about how a Simon strategist promised to spotlight "the actor's raunchy past and liberal social views." Couric then demanded: "How dirty will you get?" www.mediaresearch.org

Howard Dean on cover of Newsweek -- August 11: Dean Gave VT High Taxes, Yet Media Tag Him "Fiscal Conservative"
"The Washington Times reports that Dean's budget balancing in Vermont, much-cited by the news media, left the state with quote, 'one of the highest per capita tax burdens in the country,' end quote," FNC's Brit Hume informed his viewers on Thursday night. Indeed, the misnomer is repeated incessantly by journalists at major outlets. On Inside Washington over the weekend, Newsweek's Martha Brant asserted that Howard Dean is "a fiscal conservative." Sunday morning on CBS's Face the Nation, USA Today reporter Jill Lawrence insisted: "He is a kind of a complicated mix of liberal and moderate positions. He's a fiscal conservative." www.mediaresearch.org

-- August 12: Network Vet: "Dukakis Was No Liberal and Neither Was Mondale"
Former NBC and CNN political reporter Ken Bode, on the Chris Matthews Show over the weekend, seriously maintained that neither Walter Mondale nor Michael Dukakis were liberals. Bode generously conceded that George McGovern "was a liberal," but then insisted: "Dukakis was no liberal and neither was Mondale. Both of them had several people to the left in those primaries. It was what the Republicans did to them once they got the nomination that made them seem to be liberals in both cases." www.mediaresearch.org

-- August 14: On CNN's NewsNight, It's the "Far Right" Versus Schwarzenegger
To CNN, the California recall campaign pits Arnold Schwarzenegger and "moderate Republicans" against the "far right." A single story on CNN's NewsNight with Aaron Brown on Wednesday night employed the term "far right" three times to marginalize Republicans who disagree with Schwarzenegger's liberal positions on a series of issues, though CNN naturally did not describe his positions as liberal. www.mediaresearch.org

-- August 18: Schieffer Suggests Companies, Not Customers, Pay for Grid Fixes
CBS's Bob Schieffer must have flunked Econ 101, or never taken such a course. When, on Sunday's Face the Nation, Secretary of Energy Spencer Abraham suggested electricity company customers will need to pay for upgrades to the grid system, an incredulous Schieffer pleaded, "Wait, wait, wait. Let's back up. So you're saying the customers are going to have to pay for this!?" Schieffer recommended another entity pay for it: "Aren't the companies going to have to bear some of this cost?" www.mediaresearch.org

-- August 21: Garofalo on Bush: "It Is...a Conspiracy of the 43rd Reich"
Another round of looniness from left-wing activist/actress Janeane Garofalo as the co-host in the left chair on CNN's Crossfire this week. On Wednesday afternoon she blamed the Bush team for the terrorist attack on the UN hotel: "It is the Bush/Cheney cartel's fault for this." Railing against the Bush administration's efforts to pass and now argue in favor of the benefits of the Patriot Act, Garofalo raised Nazism. Playing off how George W. Bush is the 43rd President, she charged: "It is in fact a conspiracy of the 43rd Reich." In between, she spewed: "Team Bush is more radically corrupt than Richard Nixon ever tried to be." www.mediaresearch.org

-- August 22: ABC News on Hamas: "A Political and Social Welfare Organization"
ABC News reporter Mike Lee on Thursday night described Hamas, which claimed responsibility for the bus bombing in Jerusalem which killed 20 earlier this week, including six children, as "a political and social welfare organization with a military wing that has launched terror attacks against Israel." www.mediaresearch.org

-- Brent Baker