13 January, 2011

Media Gets an ‘F’ On AZ Shooting Coverage

Again, this post is mostly a mnemonic device for me, so I’ll have a central location to look this up later.

But, just in case you missed this any of this, read on.

How did the New York Times react to the Ft. Hood shooting vs. the AZ shooting?Ft. Hood:

In the aftermath of this unforgivable attack, it will be important to avoid drawing prejudicial conclusions from the fact that Major Hasan is an American Muslim whose parents came from the Middle East.

President Obama was right when he told Americans, “we don’t know all the answers yet” and cautioned everyone against “jumping to conclusions.”


[I]t is legitimate to hold Republicans and particularly their most virulent supporters in the media responsible for the gale of anger that has produced the vast majority of these threats, setting the nation on edge. Many on the right have exploited the arguments of division, reaping political power by demonizing immigrants, or welfare recipients, or bureaucrats. They seem to have persuaded many Americans that the government is not just misguided, but the enemy of the people.

How about Media Matters discussing the hostage-taker at the Discovery channel a few months ago?

Though at this point we know very little about Lee, his apparent demands indicate that his views are far from being grounded in a definable mainstream ideology, either liberal or conservative. Instead, they show a clearly disturbed individual.

And here’s Media Matters discussing the AZ shooting:

Rep. Gabrielle Giffords appears be the latest victim of anti-government violence that has taken hold in America since 2009. It’s a wave of violence that’s cresting along with a tide of hateful, insurrectionist rhetoric that far too many conservatives refuse to condemn. Instead, the toxic talk is routinely defended as being nothing more than spirited debate.

It’s not. It’s deadly. And until those in positions of power say so, the dangerous rhetoric is likely to continue.

Note also that I couldn’t find anything on Media Matters about “dangerous rhetoric” from the left.

And here’s our friend, Chris Matthews displaying his typical even-handedness and aplomb.


Like the NYT, CNN’s record on Ft. Hood vs. AZ is less than stellar.

Ft. Hood:

“The important thing is for everyone not to jump to conclusions,” said retired Gen. Wesley Clark on CNN the night of the shootings.

“We cannot jump to conclusions,” said CNN’s Jane Velez-Mitchell that same evening. “We have to make sure that we do not jump to any conclusions whatsoever.”


So that's why we want to bring up one of the themes that's burning up the social media right now.  On Twitter and Facebook, there is a lot of talk, in particular, about Sarah Palin.  As you might recall, back in March of last year, when the health care vote was coming to the floor of the House and this was all heating up, Palin tweeted out a message on Twitter saying 'common sense conservatives, don't retreat -- instead reload.'  And she referred folks to her Facebook page.  On that Facebook page was a list of Democratic members she was putting in crosshairs, and Gabrielle Giffords was one of those in the crosshairs.

Here’s another stellar example from the NYT. Former Congressman, Paul Kanjorski (D-PA) penned an editorial for them.

We all lose an element of freedom when security considerations distance public officials from the people. Therefore, it is incumbent on all Americans to create an atmosphere of civility and respect in which political discourse can flow freely, without fear of violent confrontation.

Nice words. Here’s something Mr. Kanjorski had to say last October, during the campaign season.

"That Scott down there that's running for governor of Florida," Mr. Kanjorski said. "Instead of running for governor of Florida, they ought to have him and shoot him. Put him against the wall and shoot him. He stole billions of dollars from the United States government and he's running for governor of Florida. He's a millionaire and a billionaire. He's no hero. He's a damn crook. It's just we don't prosecute big crooks."

While not related to the AZ shooting per se, Media Research Center has a nice roundup of left-wing radio and how tolerant they are compared to right-wing radio. Here’s my favorite:

In 2009, then-Air America radio host Montel Williams urged Congresswoman Michele Bachmann to kill herself: “Slit your wrist! Go ahead! I mean, you know, why not? I mean, if you want to — or, you know, do us all a better thing. Move that knife up about two feet. I mean, start right at the collarbone.” (MP3 audio)

Let’s not forget Dr. Paul Krugman.

Posted mere hours after the shooting:

You know that Republicans will yell about the evils of partisanship whenever anyone tries to make a connection between the rhetoric of Beck, Limbaugh, etc. and the violence I fear we’re going to see in the months and years ahead. But violent acts are what happen when you create a climate of hate. And it’s long past time for the GOP’s leaders to take a stand against the hate-mongers.

And the next day:

The point is that there’s room in a democracy for people who ridicule and denounce those who disagree with them; there isn’t any place for eliminationist rhetoric, for suggestions that those on the other side of a debate must be removed from that debate by whatever means necessary.

And it’s the saturation of our political discourse — and especially our airwaves — with eliminationist rhetoric that lies behind the rising tide of violence.

Where’s that toxic rhetoric coming from? Let’s not make a false pretense of balance: it’s coming, overwhelmingly, from the right.

Paul Krugman, 2009:

A message to progressives: By all means, hang Senator Joe Lieberman in effigy.

And there’s a reason all of this is important. The PJ Tatler nails it.

The media’s ghastly performance may also be a window into how it will cover the 2012 presidential elections. Any attempt at criticizing President Barack Obama may be labeled “hate speech.” Any violence that breaks out during the campaign cycle, no matter the cause, target or provocation, may be labeled Tea Party-approved behavior. Who needs facts?

It’s too soon to say exactly how the media will misbehave over the next two years. One thing is clear — outlets from MSNBC to The New York Times and CNN are capable of just about anything to smear the Right. The Tucson coverage confirms it.

Next year’s campaign cycle is going to be ugly, and there will likely be very little truth to be seen from the left-wing media.

UPDATE: Damn. I missed this one and I wanted to put it in.

Once more from Chris Matthews, regarding Sarah Palin and the AZ shooting:

We can assume innocence in terms of Palin's role or anything Glenn Beck, or anybody else, but you can't exonerate them until we know the truth here.

Like I said, liberals love standards so much, they try to have two of them on every issue.

12 January, 2011

Who’s Going To Win The Super Bowl?

Since I do all those college football ratings (yes, I’ll release a season ending one—just need to write the sucker), you might have speculated that I do NFL ones as well. You’d be right.

Using my Monte Carlo simulator, I’ve projected out the rest of the NFL playoffs. The results are below.

The first table lists each team’s chance to make the conference championship game, which is also the chance of winning the next game.

Team Chance to make conference championship game
Chicago Bears 86.74%
New England Patriots 71.55%
Pittsburgh Steelers 70.07%
Green Bay Packers 60.04%
Atlanta Falcons 39.96%
Baltimore Ravens 29.93%
New York Jets 28.45%
Seattle Seahawks 13.26%


The next table lists each team’s chance to make the Super Bowl, or of winning their respective conference championship.

Team Chance to make Super Bowl
New England Patriots 48.92%
Green Bay Packers 42.83%
Pittsburgh Steelers 30.38%
Atlanta Falcons 28.30%
Chicago Bears 28.13%
New York Jets 10.40%
Baltimore Ravens 10.31%
Seattle Seahawks 0.74%


And now, the numbers you’ve been waiting for. Chance to win the Super Bowl.

Team Chance to Win Super Bowl
New England Patriots 31.57%
Green Bay Packers 22.79%
Pittsburgh Steelers 17.05%
Atlanta Falcons 10.24%
Chicago Bears 8.84%
New York Jets 4.89%
Baltimore Ravens 4.56%
Seattle Seahawks 0.06%


Tune in next week for updated chances.

It’s Almost Getting Too Easy

It’s almost getting too easy to predict the media’s reaction to events.

After spending several days blaming Sarah Palin for the AZ shooting with no evidence whatsoever (in fact, evidence pointing away from her), the media started their second phase in the last 24 hours or so.

This phase was “Where is Sarah Palin?” Chris Matthew claimed she was on the lam. The left wing media wanted desperately to know why she hadn’t responded to the charges against her.


First of all, let’s get some perspective. Sarah Palin is not the story. No matter how much liberals want her to be, she isn’t. The story is Loughner and the shooting and Rep. Gabrielle Giffords’ (D-AZ-08) fight for survival.

Had Sarah Palin interjected herself into this fray sooner, she would have made herself the story. She has too much class for this. She sent an e-mail to Glenn Beck, and let her spokesman speak for her and that was it.

However, the media wouldn’t let it go. Determined to force her “out of hiding”, they hammered upon the issue of her map and her silence.

So, Mrs. Palin finally responded. And what a response.

Sarah Palin: "America's Enduring Strength" from Sarah Palin on Vimeo.

As soon as I saw it, two things came to mind.

The first: this is a very Presidential statement. The tone and message are spot on perfect. In fact, this is the statement that President Barack Obama (D-USA) should give later today. His speechwriters must be scrambling now, because she has set the bar very high, and past history gives no indication that he can clear it.

The second: the left wing media will go berserk. And right on cue, there they are.

Palin's best move would have been to remain silent, as Dave Weigel wrote yesterday, especially since Giffords had expressed concern about Palin's map at the time it had been released.


Now, mere days after the incident, with six people dead and Giffords still recovering, Palin is making herself the center of attention.

Expect more of this from Chris Matthews this evening.

Palin is making herself the center of attention? What planet do you live on, seriously? The left has done nothing but make Palin the center of attention from almost the moment of the shooting (ahem, Krugman), and Palin has done everything possible to stay out of it. Finally, when she does issue a statement, it’s polite, even tempered, calm and not even the tiniest bit defensive or even antagonistic.

In short, the statement is designed to deflect attention away from Sarah Palin.

This shows the hypocrisy of the left. After screaming for her to “come out of hiding”, now they say that her “best move would have been to remain silent”.

My current tag line on my IM client says “Liberals love standards so much that they try to have two on every issue.” I put it up yesterday, not realizing that liberals would set out to prove my point less than 24 hours later.

UPDATE: This, from Kathryn Jean Lopez, supporting my view:

Yesterday, it was an outrage that Sarah Palin hadn’t responded to some of this week’s ridiculous commentary. The deafening silence! Someone (was it Chris Matthews?) had her hiding in a cave in Alaska. And now that she has responded, that’s an outrage, too.

My favorite accusation is that Sarah Palin is such a dim bulb that she doesn’t know what “blood libel” most prominently, poisonously, and disgracefully refers to. If you’re making that accusation, you ought to take a look at who some of her advisers are. They’re not new to the world of actual wars and history.

Where was the outrage when the Wall Street Journal published the phrase earlier in the week? This seems to be a whole lot more about reacting to Sarah Palin, and being annoyed at Sarah Palin, than anything else. And it continues to miss the point that Tucson is not about Sarah Palin. 

UPDATE: And right on cue, here’s ABC:

Sarah Palin, once again, has found a way to become part of the story. And she may well face further criticism for the timing and scope of her remarks.

And CBS claims that Palin is playing the victim card:

Blood libel is the false accusation, perhaps originating in the 12th century, that Jews murder children to use their blood for religious rituals and holidays. Palin appears to be appropriating the term to indicate that she is a victim, as a result of some groups and individuals claiming that her political rhetoric contributed to the actions of the deranged, lone gunman.

The simple truth is no matter what Sarah Palin did or did not do, the press was going to damn her. So, she chose the route of addressing the issue, defending herself, and expressing her sympathies for those involved. And, unlike her attackers, her words were delivered with style and class. Likely this will be the last she will say on this issue.

Media Guide For the Journalistically Challenged

h/t: Big Journalism

11 January, 2011

Violent Rhetoric

You’ve probably seen most of these already. I’m just posting this here so I’ll have it handy the next time liberals once again try to claim the moral high ground on violence and calmness.

From Paul Krugman, that person who is so worried about violent rhetoric from Sarah Palin:

A message to progressives: By all means, hang Senator Joe Lieberman in effigy.

Sarah Palin, hung in effigy.


Michelle Malkin gives us ‘The progressive “climate of hate”: An illustrated primer, 2000-2010’ which includes:

The progressive climate of hate: A comprehensive illustrated primer in 8 parts:

V. LEFT-WING MOB HATE — campus, anti-war radicals, ACORN, eco-extremists, & unions
VIII. HATE: CRIMES — the ever-growing Unhinged Mugshot Collection

Let’s not forget the death threats against President George W. Bush, (R-USA). Too many to excerpt. Follow the links.

How about a movie about the assassination of President Bush?

“Death of a President,” the documentary-style speculative fiction about the assassination of the 43rd President of the United States, is seamless, intelligent and maybe even necessary to an understanding of George W. Bush’s role in the world today[.]Jim Emerson on RogerEbert.com

And here are some liberal reactions to the AZ shooting (language warning):


Flopping Aces has a nice roundup of “tolerance” from the left, including:

Another nice rundown from the Greenroom @ HotAir.

After all, anyone who was awake through the last 10 years — as opposed to just the last 2 — knows that violent and hateful rhetoric has been a recurring theme of the left. But you would never know it from the establishment media. The death threats at anti-Bush rallies? The establishment media must have been out on an eight-year smoke break. Did they wring their hands over The Bush assassination porn in movies, books and art? Not really. When a man — an avowed MSNBC viewer — was convicted of threatening Rep. Ginny Brown-Waite (R-FL) in the aftermath of the healthcare debate, was there a concerted stroking of chins, or wagging of fingers? How about when a man made a bomb threat against a Republican fundraiser featuring Senate candidate Linda McMahon? When fmr. Rep. Paul Kanjorski (D-PA) suggested that Rick Scott, now the Republican Governor of Florida, be shot? How about when Sarah Palin’s church was burned down? (Aside: Imagine the media coverage had Obama’s church had been burned down.) How about when then-candidate Obama bragged that he would bring a gun to a knife fight? That was not condemned, but celebrated as scrappy an pop-culure savvy. The list goes on and on.

New Jersey’s Teachers Union Prays for Governor Chris Christie’s (R-NJ) death.

To wit, a memo sent out by the New Jersey Education Association stupidly contained the following prayer:

"Dear Lord: This year you have taken away my favorite actor, Patrick Swayze, my favorite actress, Farrah Fawcett, my favorite singer, Michael Jackson, and my favorite salesman, Billy Mays ... I just wanted to let you know that Chris Christie is my favorite governor."

Stay classy, liberals.

09 January, 2011

Nothing Is More Predictable Than the Stupidity of Politicians

Well, this didn’t take long. And after all the talk about “violent rhetoric” the last few days, it was inevitable, I guess.

But no less stupid.

Rep. Robert Brady, [(D-PA-01)], said he will introduce legislation making it a federal crime for a person to use language or symbols that could be perceived as threatening or inciting violence against a Member of Congress or federal official.

"The president is a federal official," Brady said in a telephone interview with CNN. "You can't do it to him; you should not be able to do it to a congressman, senator or federal judge.

"This is not a wake up call, this is major alarms going off," he said.

He’s right. Major alarms are going off. Those that protect the First Amendment.

Brady is particularly incensed over a web posting by former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin during the 2010 election in which she targeted 20 House Democrats, including Giffords for political defeat. The posting showed a map of the United States with the 20 Democratic congressional districts identified by gun sights.

As I mentioned earlier, the left can not claim the moral high ground on this issue, not even with this particular politician.

Brady stressed he is not "pointing at any particular party" noting that there is Democratic rhetoric and actions at times that he thinks is out of bounds. "You can disagree without being disagreeable," he said.

Uh huh. In DC, they call that “spin”. Back here in Indiana, we call it a lie. Whatever.

As for support for the bill, Brady said, "Why would you be against it?"

I guess Brady was absent during the reading of the Constitution the other day.

I am against it because I am against just about anything that threatens free speech in America. And the speech in particular that he’s so incensed about is so innocuous that this is pointless. He doesn’t want to be able to say that politicians are “targeted” during campaigns? Ok, it’s going to be really hard to talk about defeating incumbents then, if you’re going to ban anything that someone might twist into a threat.

No way, Brady. You lose. Take your piece of crap bill back to PA. And don’t come back. Congress doesn’t need people like you.

(I’m pretty sure that last statement would be illegal under his bill)

Quoting Glenn Reynolds once more:

Let me be clear, as a great man says: If you’re using this event to criticize the “rhetoric” of Sarah Palin or others with whom you disagree, then you’re either asserting a connection between the “rhetoric” and the shooting — which based on evidence to date would be what we call a vicious lie — or you’re not, in which case you’re just seizing on a tragedy to try to score unrelated political points, which is contemptible. So which is it?

So, which is it, Mr. Brady?

This is the beginning, but not the end. The left is going to use this to push hard on clamping down on free speech. Watch. And be afraid. Very afraid.

Are The Beatles Responsible For the Manson Murders?

That’s what the left apparently believes.

According to the likes of Keith Olbermann, Jane Fonda, CBS News, Markos Moulitsas (founder of DailyKos), Eugene Robinson (Washington Post),  and Paul Krugman (idiot), Sarah Palin and the Tea Party are responsible for the AZ shooting yesterday.

This is because of the “violent rhetoric” that “comes exclusively from the right” (according to Mr. Robinson) and due to an unfortunate coincidence with an image from Mrs. Palin’s PAC. During the campaign season, Mrs. Palin “targeted” 20 Democrats who voted for ObamaCare and yet represented districts won by John McCain in 2008. She called this operation “Take Back the 20” and there was even a website for it.

The picture for this included crosshairs representing the targeted Democrats.

The PAC no longer has the image, but you can still see it on Mrs. Palin’s original Facebook posting regarding the campaign.

Helter Skelter. Can’t you hear what they’re saying, man?

This despite the fact that lefties regularly “target” the opposition (it’s a common word in politics). As Verum Serum notes with a couple images from no less than the DCCC.

And despite the fact that on Mr. DailyKos himself also put a target on Giffords.

And despite this post about Gabrielle Giffords appearing on DailyKos a mere two days ago.

I had to show a pic. The post has been removed. Because the left doesn’t engage in “violent rhetoric”.

Helter Skelter. Can’t you hear what they’re saying?

This also despite the fact that the suspect doesn’t sound much like your typical Sarah Palin loving, Tea Partying, Fox News Watching right wing nutjob.


I had favorite books: Animal Farm, Brave New World, The Wizard Of OZ, Aesop Fables, The Odyssey, Alice Adventures Into Wonderland, Fahrenheit 451, Peter Pan, To Kill A Mockingbird, We The Living, Phantom Toll Booth, One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest, Pulp,Through The Looking Glass, The Communist Manifesto, Siddhartha, The Old Man And The Sea, Gulliver's Travels, Mein Kampf, The Republic, and Meno.

Also, his one mentioned favorite YouTube video was of a flag burning. I bet that’s one of Mrs. Palin’s favorites too, don’t ya think? All Blue Star moms love flag burnings.

Glenn Reynolds sums it up perfectly.

Let me be clear, as a great man says: If you’re using this event to criticize the “rhetoric” of Sarah Palin or others with whom you disagree, then you’re either asserting a connection between the “rhetoric” and the shooting — which based on evidence to date would be what we call a vicious lie — or you’re not, in which case you’re just seizing on a tragedy to try to score unrelated political points, which is contemptible. So which is it?

I have an idea. Let’s not use tragedies (or atrocities if you prefer, don’t want to rile up Dr. Krugman, idiot-at-large) to score cheap political points. The guy isn’t a right wing loon, and despite his left-leaning politics, he isn’t a left wing loon either. He’s just a loon.

One last picture, to remind you what this is really about, and it ain’t political cheap shots.


The smiling little girl in the picture is 9 year old Christina Taylor Green, born 9/11/01, who was killed in the shooting.

I’m going to steal a comment from Seven Percent Solution at HotAir.

Some where in Arizona, there is a bedroom of a nine year old girl…

… It sits empty now, after a night of dreams and a morning of anxious anticipation for the day.

Toys, pictures, mementos, and dreams of the bright future ahead all sit silent now as a memorial to the future that will never come…

… There will be no more laughter, no more dreams of the future, no more chance to grow up, fall in love, and have children of her own.

As I pray for all the victims of this senseless act, the death of this little girl hits me hard for I have a son who will be nine in July, and I can not imagine the soul tearing pain her parents are feeling right now…

For those of you who want to turn this into political cannon fire…

… Put yourselves in the shoes of the parents of the little girl, who will eventually have to go home, and enter that empty room where they will still be able to smell her and feel her spirit, knowing their daughter that they brought into this world will never be coming home.

If only for her…

… Why don’t you give it a rest for the day.

And I’m going to take Seven’s advice.

RIP, Judge John Roll, Dorthy Murray, Dorwin Stoddard, Christina Green, Phyllis Scheck, and Gabriel Zimmerman.