Dr. Donald Berwick, the new chief of Medicare and Medicaid, was installed by the White House without the traditional Senate confirmation vote, thus enabling him to duck questions about his enthusiasm for British-style health-care rationing. New York Times health reporter Robert Pear sounded eager to help Berwick dispel his image as a cold-blooded ivory tower intellectual, vouching for Berwick's "extensive real world experience" in the lead paragraph of his Tuesday story, " Settling Down to a New Job, but Hampered by Old Words ." That headline implied that Berwick's views were some youthful indiscretion, but they haven't altered. The text... continue reading
Good Morning America's George Stephanopoulos on Tuesday repeated Democratic talking points as he challenged Republican gubernatorial candidate Meg Whitman. Speaking of Whitman's tenure as CEO of Ebay, he admitted the company was "very successful," but critiqued, " You made a fortune. But your opponent, Jerry Brown, says that government is a completely different world. " The former Democratic operative turned journalist later repeated the words of Whitman's opponent: "Jerry Brown also says that the heart of your economic platform, he says, is tax cuts that are going to benefit you but not do much for the state of California." In... continue reading
CBS's Lara Logan may be in Uganda, but she recognized the skew of media coverage of the WikiLeaks war documents on the U.S. involvement in Afghanistan as she contended "the coverage would indicate that it's more of an issue for the U.S. to kill Afghan civilians than it is for the Taliban to do so." CBS Evening News anchor Katie Couric asked her about how the documents cite "the number of Afghan civilians who have been killed. How do you think this will damage the war effort?" Logan took the question in another direction: Well, the issue of civilian casualties... continue reading
On Saturday's CBS Early Show, correspondent Jim Axelrod reported on the death of former CBS correspondent Daniel Schorr, declaring that he "was an old-school broadcast journalist, he was the last working reporter who'd been one of Edward R. Morrow's boys." An on-screen headline read: "Celebrating Daniel Schorr; Legendary Journalist Dead at 93." Axelrod touted Schorr's reporting from CBS's Washington bureau, "ending up on Richard Nixon's enemies list during Watergate, which he always called his greatest achievement." He briefly noted Schorr being fired from CBS after reporting a leaked classified CIA report, and described the reporter's time at CNN and NPR... continue reading
Democratic Congressman Ed Markey appeared on ABC and CBS's morning shows on Monday to talk about the Gulf Coast oil spill and didn't face a single question about the government's handling of the disaster. Instead, Good Morning America and the Early Show both kept the heat on BP. Discussing the likely departure of BP's CEO Tony Hayword, GMA's Robin Roberts pressed, "And that when [Haywood] gave those evasive answers, you felt were evasive answers, when you grilled him on Capitol Hill last month- What do you think about this imminent change? Is it too late for you?" Early Show's Harry... continue reading
ABC's World News on Sunday caught up to CBS and NBC in fretting about the potential problems caused by illegal immigrants who may be leaving Arizona before the state's new law takes effect on Thursday. Correspondent Barbara Pinto devoted her entire piece to lamenting the possible damage to small businesses whose customers are presumably now leaving the state, but offered less than a sentence to the idea that illegal immigrants are already an expensive burden on state social services . "The loud and bitter battle over Arizona's immigration law has reached fever-pitch," claimed Pinto. "But Rosario Peralta worries about the... continue reading
On Monday's News Live, MSNBC's Contessa Brewer expressed incredulity at the revelation that journalist Andrew Breitbart will be appearing at a Republican fundraiser. "I mean, really? Is he going to be a good fund-raiser for the Republicans?" Reporter Richard Wolffe lectured, " Because if he is that much of a political activist that he is raising money for the RNC, then he is not quite the journalist he describes himself as. " Yet, those exact words could be put to Brewer. On July 24 , she was the featured guest at a fundraiser in Kentucky for gay rights. This despite... continue reading
At the end of Sunday's CBS Evening News, anchor Russ Mitchell celebrated the efforts of 82-year-old Jean Hill to ban the sale of bottled water in Concord, Massachusetts as: " woman's campaign for a greener America, one bottle at a time." He declared: " may remember the environmentalist mantra: 'Think globally, act locally'....[Hill] is trying to take that message to heart." Mitchell went on to describe Hill's involvement in the issue: " was only a few months ago that this grandmother, best known for her blueberry pie, became a political force....At the annual town meeting in April, Hill proposed a... continue reading
Four months after leading Face the Nation with uncorroborated allegations from left-wing bloggers about racist and homophobic outbursts by anti-Obamacare protesters, spread in an effort to discredit President Obama's opponents, CBS's Bob Schieffer cited the Shirley Sherrod case to propound on the superiority of his fact-checking "Old Media" over the careless "New Media." In his commentary on Sunday, Schieffer boasted of how "we still call people involved in a story to get their side; editors fact check; and we never publish or broadcast anything unless we think it's true." In contrast, he lectured, "last week, we saw what can happen... continue reading
Daniel Schorr's passing on Friday, at age 93, reminded me of the kind of assaults CBS News unleashed on conservatives before there were any countervailing forums available. A 2001 Weekly Standard article (nine years in my "pending" file!) detailed a particularly vicious left-wing hit piece he narrated in 1964 which linked Republican presidential nominee Barry Goldwater with neo-Nazis in Germany, a CBS Evening News story notorious enough to earn a mention - if without any censure - in the New York Times and Washington Post obituaries. In a June of 2001 Weekly Standard review of a memoir by Schorr about... continue reading