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Category: Media and Politics
Posted by: A Waco Farmer
Today Good Morning America weatherman, Sam Champion, is on the road with Sheryl Crow's “Stop Global Warming College Tour.”

The tour is currently in Dallas set to play at SMU (hosting the event to do penance for winning the Bush library perhaps).

The big weather story this morning was the spring freeze throughout the South over the weekend. In fact, Dallas was the scene of snow flurries on Saturday.

No matter, in the first hour (that is all I saw), not once did Sam feel compelled to make any reference to the incongruity.

So what?

This is not one of those pieces that lampoons the concern over global warming by pointing out the latest conference cancelled due to a blizzard (although those stories always give me a chuckle).

For the record: I don't discount the myriad scientists who tell us to be concerned with the verifiable changes in climate on our planet. I too worry about finding water and other resources for a world population at 6-billion-plus and rising.

My beef is with the mainstream media: Can you imagine the hoots those overlapping events might have elicited on the GMA set, if they were not so heavily invested in this cause.

That is, it is frightening the discipline MSM actors have mustered in support of this movement?
Category: Media and Politics
Posted by: A Waco Farmer
The good news: Joe Klein, who spent a career posing as an "objective" journalist and Washington inside-the-Beltway wise man, is finally unmasked . Fortunately, Joe Klein's by-line now appears under the label of "commentary." He is off the streets and safely contained on the op-ed pages of TIME magazine.

The bad news: There are still a host of reporters out there covering national government who are not out of the closet.

From the most recent issue of TIME, Joe Klein's assault on the President:

The Headline: "An Administration's Epic Collapse: In the face of three scandals. Bush offers only more relentless partisanship" (full article here).

Klein: A Pew poll had it about right: a substantial majority of the public remains happy the Democrats won in 2006, but neither Nancy Pelosi nor Harry Reid has dominated the public consciousness as Newt Gingrich did when the Republicans came to power in 1995.

That is probably because Nancy Pelosi is so humble and retiring and does not go looking for ways to place her name on the top of the page--unlike that dastardly megalomaniac, Newt Gingrich. No way is it because the media treatment of Pelosi and Gingrich are as different as lightning and a lightning bug. Hold on, Joe Klein has a better answer:

Klein: There is a reason for that. A much bigger story is unfolding: the epic collapse of the Bush Administration.

Please. Go on.

Klein: The three big Bush stories of 2007...precisely illuminate the three qualities that make this Administration one of the worst in American history: arrogance (the surge), incompetence (Walter Reed) and cynicism (the U.S. Attorneys).

One of the worst in American history? That is a big claim. Thanks, though, for a recap of the DNC talking points. Anything else?

Klein: Iraq comes first, as always. From the start, it has been obvious that personal motives have skewed the President's judgment about the war. Saddam tried to kill his dad...

Is there anything more hackneyed and more facile than this line of argument? Perhaps next week Klein and Rosie O'Donnell can explain the real story behind the 9-11 attacks.

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Category: Media and Politics
Posted by: A Waco Farmer
Important Admission: I am a big fan and supporter of NPR. I enjoy their artistry. I acknowledge their left-leaning bias, and that often colors their coverage of Republicans and conservatives in unflattering and unfriendly ways. Nevertheless, I appreciate the skill and erudition that permeates every aspect of their operation.

Today, however, Morning Edition's David Greene orchestrated a gratuitously misleading characterization of the President's press conference yesterday that deserves notice.

In the introduction to the story, NPR anchor Renee Montagne set-up Greene calling the session "a little unusual." It was a Rose Garden press conference, which is not commonplace, but that is not what she meant. Greene quickly asserted that yesterday there were "no chairs or mikes" at the press conference. Perhaps the "President wasn't in the mood for something so formal," Greene wondered. Reporters "stood and tried to make themselves heard," he reported and then implied that no one (not even the President) could hear the questions. Listening to Greene, I could not help but think of the old Reagan sound bites with the helicopter roaring and Reagan cupping his ear and looking befuddled and Nancy whispering: "just tell them we are working on it."

But that was all wrong. I happened to catch a replay of the conference early this morning on C-SPAN, and it was nothing like that. My one observation about the atmospherics was that the President must have been facing the sun, for he seemed to be squinting a lot. But the audio was fine. I did not miss any questions. Maybe C-SPAN has a better audio set-up than NPR--but David Greene said there were no "mikes," which, of course, was a ridiculous statement.

Later in his report, Greene featured a sound bite (which was exquisitely audible) of the question that queried the President about the "morality of homosexuality." Green added that the reporter "was lucky enough to be near a microphone" (which supposedly were nonexistent).

Listen to the full story here.

Am I being too fastidious? Maybe. Of course, people in the news business who make a living pointing out errors ought to get their facts right. Why emphasize this erroneous angle (no microphones) or comment on reporters standing in the Rose Garden, if not to create an impression that implicitly reinforces a storyline.

Anyhow, here is the C-SPAN archive (decide for yourself): Bush Administration Page here.

And the transcript from the White House here.

Also, I witnessed a remarkable edition of C-SPAN's Washington Journal this morning, which featured Ronald Griffin, a private citizen and father of a fallen American soldier. Griffen recently returned from a personal trip to Iraq. Much more on this in the hours or days to come. I encourage you to view it now for yourself here.