BiasAlerts

"As Castro Turns 83, Cuba Caught Between Past, Future," announces an August 13 headline for the CBSNews.com World Watch blog . The 10-paragraph entry by Havana-based news producer Portia Siegelbaum amounted to an electronic birthday card for the Communist dictator. No Castro critics, domestic or foreign, were cited in the story, although Siegelbaum made sure to note how a "U.S.-based religious group, Pastors for Peace" got to hang out on Wednesday with the aging despot. Yet Siegelbaum failed to note the leftist political bent of Pastors for Peace , describing it merely as "an anti-embargo organization." The Web site for... continue reading
Among Tuesday's network evening newscasts, all three of which ran stories on the death of Kennedy family member Eunice Kennedy Shriver, the NBC Nightly News uniquely noted that she was strongly opposed to abortion, even while she was liberal overall. Anchor Brian Williams filed a full report on Shriver, which concentrated largely on her work on behalf of those with special needs, including her founding of the Special Olympics. After a clip of former President Reagan awarding her the Presidential Medal of Freedom for her work, Williams noted that she was a "lifelong opponent of abortion." Williams: " While a... continue reading
At the top of Thursday's CBS Early Show, co-host Harry Smith teased an upcoming segment on dispelling myths about health care reform: "There's so much anger, this vitriol that we see day after day in these town meetings across the country ....We're going to try and determine this morning whether or not some of these bold statements are, in fact, true or not." Smith turned to Jonathan Cohn, senior editor of the left-wing magazine, The New Republic, to find the "truth" about the President's health care plan. Smith made no mention of Cohn's political affiliation or the magazine's liberal leanings... continue reading
Of the three major networks, only CBS has managed, thus far, to ignore controversial comments from Secretary of State Hillary Clinton that compared America's disputed election in 2000 to political corruption in Nigeria. ABC, however, highlighted the August 12 remarks on Thursday's Good Morning America. GMA news anchor Chris Cuomo challenged, " Now, did [the comments] cross the line? " Co-host Robin Roberts chided, "Hillary Clinton in the hot seat. She compares Nigeria's politics to the controversial Bush/Gore election here in the U.S. Did she go too far?" Clinton, who was in Nigeria at the time, said this: "Our democracy... continue reading
On Wednesday's CBS Evening News, correspondent Bob Orr highlighted a report released by the far-left Southern Poverty Law Center claiming a recent increase in the number of militias, and warning of the possibility of increased violence by anti-government, right-wing groups and individuals, angry at Democratic party control of the government and of a black President holding office. Orr warned: "Officials say a sour economy, a Democrat-controlled government, and a black President present the kind of perfect storm that could further fuel the growth of the militia movement." Orr's report notably ran just eight minutes after a piece filed by fellow... continue reading
On Wednesday's CBS Evening News, correspondent Ben Tracy filed a report linking angry protesters opposing ObamaCare at town hall events to conservative groups, examining the possibility that the "outrage" has been "organized" by these groups, or even affected by "anti-government" sentiment over other issues, rather than legitimate concerns about the plans under consideration. Tracy began his report: "For some, their anger is tightly focused on health care reform. But for others, this issue is simply the final straw." After a soundbite of a woman complaining about the legalization of abortion and the removal of prayer from public schools, Tracy continued:... continue reading
Average American citizen Katy Abram's impassioned plea against socialized health care, at Senator Arlen Specter's town hall meeting on Tuesday, got her noticed by the "Hardball" producers as her clip was featured on Tuesday's show and she even received an invitation to appear tonight - complete with the requisite scolding from the program's liberal host. Subbing for Chris Matthews, MSNBC's Lawrence O'Donnell incorrectly challenged Abram's fear that Barack Obama wanted to move to a single-payer plan. After Abram recalled that, "I heard him say on a quote, on television, that...we will move to a single-payer" plan, O'Donnell rebuked "He never... continue reading
At the top of the 8:00AM ET hour of Wednesday's Early Show, co-host Russ Mitchell cited protests at health care reform town hall meetings as evidence that the debate was "turning into a nasty national shouting match." After playing a clip of a U.S. Chamber of Commerce ad opposing the health care plan, Mitchell observed: "Democratic lawmakers pushing reform are being jeered at testy town hall meetings. President Obama is urging Americans to ignore those who he says are trying to scare and mislead." At the top of the show, co-host Harry Smith declared: "As President Obama takes his health... continue reading
On Tuesday's World News, for the second day in a row, ABC delivered a "fact check" on the health care bill, offering up perspectives sympathetic to the sweeping legislation. Confusing opinions for facts, David Wright spun that it was "true" that "95 percent of the people" would be able to keep their current plan. However, Politifact has labeled this claim a half truth. An August 11 posting conceded, "[Obama's] plan seeks to build on the system we have now, where most people get health insurance through their employers." However, it goes on to add, "But the plans also introduce new... continue reading
CNN's 3pm ET Newsroom anchor Rick Sanchez on Tuesday pleaded with White House spokesperson (and former ABC and CBS reporter) Linda Douglass to reject as a "falsity" that the health care "public option" desired by congressional liberals would include government payments for abortions. " There's no evidence, as we've found out, that there's any plans to make the government or make all Americans pay for abortions in the plan ," Sanchez insisted before lobbing this softball to Douglass: " What's your strategy for dealing with those falsities? " Unfortunately for Sanchez, just days earlier the Associated Press carried a dispatch... continue reading