The national media watch group
Updated: 6 hours 43 min ago
The reality is that it is possible to both protest government intrusions on press freedom and to condemn bad journalism of the sort practiced by Jonathan Karl. It's important for protect journalism from official control for the same reason that it's important for media outlets to do a good job.
Suggesting that the Free Syrian Army believes Iranians are in Syria--which is probably true--is not the same thing as saying "Iran has sent soldiers to Syria" to fight on Assad's behalf.
If you think public television exists to offer challenging, independent news and public affairs shows that bring us stories the stories the commercial media too often ignore, free of the influence of big sponsors and corporate owners... well, this hasn't been a good week.
The New York Times report, "Trial on Guatemalan Civil War Carnage Leaves Out U.S. Role," raises at least one obvious question: How much has U.S. coverage of the Ríos Montt trial talked about U.S. support for genocide?
The New Yorker's James Surowiecki has figured out who's to blame for unsafe working conditions for garment workers: people who wear clothing: "The problem isn't so much evil factory owners as a system that's great at getting Western consumers what they want but leaves developing-world workers toiling in misery."
What should we make of the so-called "trifecta" of scandals hitting the Obama White House? And what questions should we ask about the IRS/Tea Party story? Also this week: Chris Matthews wants Obama to take charge–just like the union-busting Ronald Reagan. And the Newseum decides two Palestinian journalists shouldn't be considered part of their tribute to journalists who died reporting the news.
Benghazi, the Justice Department seizing AP phone records, and the IRS targeting Tea Party groups: Much of the Beltway press corps--which has pushed the Benghazi story for months--is seeing the Obama presidency in a state of near free-fall. But what's actually happening?
From Free Press's helpful explainer of the AP phone records scandal, noting the legal background: Smith v. Maryland — In this 1979 decision, the Supreme Court found that people have no expectation of privacy when it comes to the numbers they call because they understand it has to be transmitted through a third party (telephone company). Thus, the [Digital Media Law Project] notes, "the government can obtain that information simply by issuing a subpoena to a telephone company or other third party." As Mr. Bumble says, "If the law supposes that, the law is a ass–a idiot." Everyone who wouldn't [...]
Praise for a conservative president's breaking the air traffic controllers' union--that's what you hear on the liberal cable channel.
CBS anchor Scott Pelley declared, "We are getting big stories wrong, over and over again.'" Well, that sounds like pretty dramatic self-criticism. But, as usual with corporate media self-critiques, Pelley's criticism mostly misses the mark.
The controversy over Heritage's dubious immigration report led Bill Keller of the New York Times to write a column about the big lessons of this scandal. And the first lesson? Think tanks on "both sides" are up to no good.
Benghazi isn't the scandal that Obama's critics make it out to be, the Washington Post's Jackson Diehl writes. But the real point of his column is to protect the legacy of the Bush White House's Iraq claims.
A memorial for journalists who died while reporting the news wouldn't seem to be the kind of thing that would attract controversy, but that's exactly what's happened with an exhibit at the Newseum.
"USAID Develops a Bad Reputation Among Some Foreign Leaders," read a May 7 Los Angeles Times headline, followed by the subhead: The U.S. Agency for International Development doesn't just offer aid to the poor, it also promotes democracy, which is seen as meddlesome or even subversive. Fighting poverty and spreading democracy–what's not to like? And so, the report seems to suggest, there's something a little off about foreign leaders, nine in recent years, who've expelled the agency. Why else would Bolivian President Evo Morales expel an anti-poverty group from his "impoverished" country, if he wasn't just a little bit crazy? [...]
This week on FAIR TV: CBS Evening News looked like it was covering an immigrant rights rally-- but it was merely a set up to talk about chaos at the border. Time's Joe Klein goes after the "gun lobby" by saying... both sides are at fault? And Cokie Roberts hears the public doesn't want to start a war with Syria. Why does she think that's "dangerous"?
The controversy over the attacks at a diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya, is a great test of the right's tired claim that the corporate media have a liberal bias. If that were true, then this "scandal" would exist almost entirely on Fox News Channel and conservative talk radio.
There's another Libya story that should be getting attention. It's not, and never really has, because the dead are Libyan civilians, killed by U.S./NATO airstrikes.
Hollywood's latest superhero movie has a political message that's not particularly hard to decipher. Yet fail to decipher it New York Times film critic Manohla Dargis evidently did.
The "center" doesn't usually indicate where most of the public is, but rather where elites have determined an appropriate middle between opposing arguments.
It shouldn't be necessary to spell out, but apparently it is, that sending the Central Park Five to prison for a crime they hadn't committed was wrong because they hadn't committed the crime.