top


The 2,619th CyberAlert. Tracking Liberal Media Bias Since 1996
1:50pm EDT, Thursday April 3, 2008 (Vol. Thirteen; No. 64)
Back To Today's CyberAlert | Free Subscription

1. Matthews to Obama: 'Tough Enough' to Handle 'Right Wing Radio?'
Chris Matthews got Barack Obama one-on-one on Wednesday night as part of Hardball's "College Tour," but didn't admit to getting a "thrill" up his leg from the Illinois Senator's appearance. However, Matthews did ask Obama questions mostly from the left, such as if he was "tough enough to take the heat" from "right wing radio," and warned him the "Republicans will bring [Jeremiah Wright] back."

2. CBS's Smith: 'An Extraordinary Number' of Republicans for Obama
In yet another fawning interview with Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama on Wednesday's CBS Early Show, co-host Harry Smith touted Obama's bi-partisan appeal: "Though he leads Hillary Clinton in national polls, Obama trails in Pennsylvania. He's hoping record voter registration and an extraordinary number of people who have switched parties to boost his chances." Smith then asked the Illinois Senator: "What is your sense from what your own people tell you about the switching that has taken place already in Pennsylvania in terms of Republicans coming over to support you?" Given Rush Limbaugh's "Operation Chaos," in which he encourages Republicans to vote for Hillary Clinton to keep the Democratic race in turmoil, one wonders if this "extraordinary number" of Republicans crossing over to vote for Obama is a similar effort, rather than true support. This interview was Smith's second with Obama since the Reverend Wright controversy and in neither case did Smith ask once about the scandal.

3. CNN's Dana Bash to McCain: Are You 'Heartless' on the Economy?
CNN correspondent Dana Bash, during an interview of Senator John McCain which aired on Tuesday's The Situation Room, raised the issue of whether the Republican presidential candidate felt voters' pain on the economy: "[I]n this time of uncertainty, when there are so many people hurting, are you concerned that there are voters out there who hear that who say, John McCain is heartless when it comes to this issue?" The thought that McCain might be "heartless" was reenforced by inclusion of the chyron, "McCain & Voters' Pain: Against Big Economic Bailouts."

4. Nets Focus on Border Fence Construction 'Sidestepping' Laws
ABC News anchor Charlie Gibson, in a news brief on Tuesday's World News, spun the Bush administration's decision to fast-track the construction of a fence along the U.S.-Mexican border, focusing almost entirely on the "more than 30 laws and regulations to be bypassed," as the graphic accompanying the brief put it. Gibson announced: "The Bush administration today announced plans to speed up construction of the fence along the Mexican border by sidestepping more than 30 laws that now stand in the way. The administration says it will use its authority to bypass those laws in an attempt to finish 670 miles of fence along the southwest border by the end of the year." CBS's Katie Couric bemoaned the potential for environmental damage: "The department intends to build hundreds of miles of fence in California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas, including one section along the Rio Grande that environmentalists contend would hurt wildlife."

5. NYT, CBS and The Independent All Mislead on Record Food Stamp Use
Many media outlets have hyped projected 2008 food stamp usage as a "record high," but as FNC's Brit Hume pointed out Wednesday night in showcasing a particularly misleading take in The Independent in London, a higher percent of Americans were on food stamps "back in the Clinton years." Hume showcased the London paper's Tuesday front page headline, "United States of America 2008: The Great Depression," which asserted that 28 million on food stamps in the U.S. represents "the highest level since the program was introduced in the 1960's." Hume noted: "But critics suggest, however, that that number is misleading since 28 million people would be just 9.2 percent of all Americans. Back in the Clinton years, food stamp distribution reached at an all-time high of almost 10 and a half percent in 1993 and 1994 and 10 percent in 1995." The Independent matched Monday's front page New York Times article, "As Jobs Vanish and Prices Rise, Food Stamp Use Nears Record." Lifting that story, on Monday's CBS Evening News reporter Bill Whitaker ominously intoned: "With jobs declining and prices for basics -- food, fuel, medicine -- on the rise, more Americans are expected to turn to food stamps in the next year than at any time since the program began in the 1960s."

6. MRC Launches 'Eyeblast' Online Video Sharing Site
The MRC on Wednesday distributed a press release announcing: "New Online Platform Revolutionizes Citizen Journalism, Conservative Networking. The Media Research Center has launched a groundbreaking, interactive news and entertainment platform designed to transform the world of online video-sharing and networking -- without the censorship or political agenda of YouTube."


 

Matthews to Obama: 'Tough Enough' to
Handle 'Right Wing Radio?'

     Chris Matthews got Barack Obama one-on-one on Wednesday night as part of Hardball's "College Tour," but didn't admit to getting a "thrill" up his leg from the Illinois Senator's appearance. However, Matthews did ask Obama questions mostly from the left, such as if he was "tough enough to take the heat" from "right wing radio," and warned him the "Republicans will bring [Jeremiah Wright] back."

     [This item, by Geoffrey Dickens, was posted Wednesday evening on the MRC's blog, NewsBusters.org: newsbusters.org ]

     On the lighter side, Obama didn't directly address Matthews about his leg tingles but did seem to make an allusion to it in the following exchange:

     MATTHEWS: Let me ask you about, at any time in this campaign, did you have a chuckle that you just couldn't get rid of? Something weird that happened, that was so crazy that you just went to bed laughing about?
     OBAMA: Oh I think that, that happens about once a day. You know? But then I stopped watching cable news.
     MATTHEWS: Oh!
     [APPLAUSE]
     MATTHEWS: I got another set of cards in the back room.

     The following questions from Matthews to Obama occurred on the April 2 edition of Hardball:

     CHRIS MATTHEWS: And now we play Hardball. That was the warm-up. How do we know that you're tough enough to take the heat from the right, from the radio address, from the right wing radio, from the right wing columnists if you begin to pull our troops out of Iraq and they start screaming, "Who lost Iraq?" How do we know you're as tough as Dick Cheney to ignore public opinion and do what you believe in? Because he's certainly tough enough to do it.

     ...

     MATTHEWS: Most people believe that the intelligence was corrupted in this administration. It was manipulated by civilians with political and ideological intent. How do you clean out the intelligence agencies and let them know you want the real intelligence, you don't want a twisted case made for whatever policy somebody is selling at the bureaucratic level?

     ...

     MATTHEWS: That said when you hear divisive language, whether it's from your preacher or from anyone else why didn't you walk out of that church? Why, when you heard that, what you called "controversial language," why did you go back and give him $27,000 in contributions to his church? Why didn't you just say, "He's on a different side this fight than I am?"
     BARACK OBAMA: No but because I think that the, you know, what's happened is we took a loop out of, and compressed the most offensive things that a pastor said over the course of 30 years and just ran it over and over and over again. Now there's that other 30 years. I never heard him say those things that were in those clips and-
     MATTHEWS: Yeah, but you did say you heard him say controversial things-
     OBAMA: Of course, well, but I hear you say controversial things, Chris.
     MATTHEWS: But you didn't give me $27,000 either.
     OBAMA: Well, no but, but the point is the, this is a church that's active in AIDS. It's active on all kinds of things.
     MATTHEWS: Yeah.
     OBAMA: And so the, you know, this is a wonderful church. But as I said, you know, look at the amount of time that's been spent on this today, Chris, at a time when we haven't talked about a whole host of issues that are really gonna make a difference.
     MATTHEWS: Yeah I know but it'll come back. You know the Republicans will bring it back.
     OBAMA: Well of course, of course it'll come back. And of course the Republicans will, will bring it back but the question is what's actually gonna make the difference in the lives of people right now who are on the verge of losing their homes? What's gonna make a difference in their lives?

     ...

     MATTHEWS: Let me ask you about, at any time in this campaign, did you have a chuckle that you just couldn't get rid of? Something weird that happened, that was so crazy that you just went to bed laughing about?
     OBAMA: Oh I think that, that happens about once a day. You know? But then I stopped watching cable news.
     MATTHEWS: Oh!
     [APPLAUSE]
     MATTHEWS: I got another set of cards in the back room.

 

CBS's Smith: 'An Extraordinary Number'
of Republicans for Obama

     In yet another fawning interview with Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama on Wednesday's CBS Early Show, co-host Harry Smith touted Obama's bi-partisan appeal: "Though he leads Hillary Clinton in national polls, Obama trails in Pennsylvania. He's hoping record voter registration and an extraordinary number of people who have switched parties to boost his chances." Smith then asked the Illinois Senator: "What is your sense from what your own people tell you about the switching that has taken place already in Pennsylvania in terms of Republicans coming over to support you?" Given Rush Limbaugh's "Operation Chaos," in which he encourages Republicans to vote for Hillary Clinton to keep the Democratic race in turmoil, one wonders if this "extraordinary number" of Republicans crossing over to vote for Obama is a similar effort, rather than true support.

     [This item, by Kyle Drennen, was posted Wednesday afternoon on the MRC's blog, NewsBusters.org: newsbusters.org ]

     Even Obama had to admit that there was no solid evidence of a large Republican turnout for him, though he still insisted a "sizable" amount of support: "You know, at this point it's still anecdotal. I can tell you that there's not a rally we have in which we don't hear from a sizable number of people who say they've switched registrations or that they're a Republican and that they're going to vote for me in the primary and in the general election."

     This interview was Smith's second with Obama since the Reverend Wright controversy and in neither case did Smith ask once about the scandal. While filling in for Katie Couric on the March 27 Evening News, Smith focused on asking whether Obama would ask Hillary Clinton to drop out of the race. On Wednesday's Early Show after Smith asked about Barack's 'Obamacans,' Smith went on throw more softballs: "What do you know now that you didn't know when you announced 14 months ago?" To which Obama replied: "I did not know how hungry people were for a different kind of politics."

     Smith also commented on Obama's bowling performance, or lack thereof: "Earlier this week Obama went bowling for voters in Altoona, reaching out to the group once again so critical, blue collar workers. His performance on the lanes prompted an April Fool's challenge from Hillary Clinton." After playing a clip of Clinton challenging Obama to a bowl-off, Smith asked: "Are you willing to take her up on it?"

     Smith, along with co-host Maggie Rodriguez, concluded the already soft interview this way: "Obama clearly having some fun on the trail. He's even been flirting as he campaigns, offering one woman a kiss if she would change her Hillary button to one supporting his campaign. Today Obama's expected to pick up the endorsement of former Indiana Congressman Lee Hamilton, the top Democrat on the 9/11 Commission." Rodriguez added: "It's come down to kissing and bowling." Smith responded: "Kiss the babies. Kiss the women, maybe. I don't know, whatever it takes to get the votes."

     Here is the full transcript of the April 2 segment:

     7:00AM TEASER. MAGGIE RODRIGUEZ: Two new polls show Barack Obama closing the gap, less than three weeks before the vital Pennsylvania primary, and today another key endorsement. We're on the road with the Illinois Senator.

     7:01AM TEASER. HARRY SMITH: I spent a very interesting afternoon on the campaign trail with Senator Barack Obama yesterday. We'll have that story in just a moment.

     7:02AM SEGMENT. SMITH: First though, with three weeks to go until the crucial Pennsylvania primary, polls show that Hillary Clinton's lead over Barack Obama is shrinking. Both candidates campaigned in the northeastern part of the state yesterday, and I jumped aboard the Obama campaign bus in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, where the candidate had harsh words for America's fastest growing economic rival.
     BARACK OBAMA: I am a strong believer in free trade, but I think that we have not been very savvy negotiators when it comes to China. I think they've played us. They definitely are stealing our intellectual property, and that has direct consequences in terms of the bottom lines for businesses here in the United States.
     SMITH: And there is concern about China's violations of human rights. Should we be a full participant in the Olympic games?
     OBAMA: I'm of two minds about this. On the one hand, I think that what's happened in Tibet, China's support of the Sudanese government in Darfur, is a real problem. I'm hesitant to make the Olympics a site of political protest because I think it's partly about bringing the world together.
     SMITH: Though he leads Hillary Clinton in national polls, Obama trails in Pennsylvania. He's hoping record voter registration and an extraordinary number of people who have switched parties to boost his chances. What is your sense from what your own people tell you about the switching that has taken place already in Pennsylvania in terms of Republicans coming over to support you?
     OBAMA: You know, at this point it's still anecdotal. I can tell you that there's not a rally we have in which we don't hear from a sizable number of people who say they've switched registrations or that they're a Republican and that they're going to vote for me in the primary and in the general election.
     SMITH: It has been 14 months since Obama first announced his candidacy. You surely either thought you'd be out or you'd have the nomination by now.
     OBAMA: That is true.
     SMITH: What do you know now that you didn't know when you announced 14 months ago?
     OBAMA: I did not know how hungry people were for a different kind of politics. What's up, guys?
     SMITH: Earlier this week Obama went bowling for voters in Altoona, reaching out to the group once again so critical, blue collar workers. His performance on the lanes prompted an April Fool's challenge from Hillary Clinton.
     HILLARY CLINTON: Today I am challenging Senator Obama to a bowl-off. A bowling night right here in Pennsylvania. Winner take all. I'll even spot him two frames.
     SMITH: Are you willing to take her up on it?
     OBAMA: You know, I am always game for a little competition. Now, I have to say that I think she has to be heavily favored given my track record in bowling.
     SMITH: Once again, trying to play down expectations there. Obama clearly having some fun on the trail. He's even been flirting as he campaigns, offering one woman a kiss if she would change her Hillary button to one supporting his campaign. Today Obama's expected to pick up the endorsement of former Indiana Congressman Lee Hamilton, the top Democrat on the 9/11 Commission.
     RODRIGUEZ: It's come down to kissing and bowling.
     SMITH: Kiss the babies. Kiss the women, maybe. I don't know, whatever it takes to get the votes.
     RODRIGUEZ: At least they're having a little fun.
     SMITH: Yeah.

 

CNN's Dana Bash to McCain: Are You 'Heartless'
on the Economy?

     CNN correspondent Dana Bash, during an interview of Senator John McCain which aired on Tuesday's The Situation Room, raised the issue of whether the Republican presidential candidate felt voters' pain on the economy: "[I]n this time of uncertainty, when there are so many people hurting, are you concerned that there are voters out there who hear that who say, John McCain is heartless when it comes to this issue?" The thought that McCain might be "heartless" was reenforced by inclusion of the chyron, "McCain & Voters' Pain: Against Big Economic Bailouts."

     After her "heartless" question on the economy, Bash followed up by asking a particularly blunt question about whether the current economy would hurt him if it continued into the time immediately before the election: "If the headlines that are on the front page of the newspapers today are the same headlines on the front pages in late October, early November, does John McCain lose?"

     [This item, by Matthew Balan, was posted Wednesday afternoon on the MRC's blog, NewsBusters.org: newsbusters.org ]

     Bash, who is following the Arizona Senator during his bus tour to key sites from his past, also pressed McCain on the issue of his age, asking him three questions on the issue. "[I]n terms of your approach, do you, in all candor -- straight talk -- think about your age when you -- and the fact that you are 71 -- will be 72 when you are deciding who would be a potential President?"

     Bash's questions on McCain's age were based on a recent Wall Street Journal poll that found that voters are more likely to vote for a woman or a black person than a person over 70, and on a self-deprecating remark he made that the role of a Vice President to check on the health of a President "would be especially important" in his case. Bash tried to take the remark more seriously. "[Y]ou say that there are two real roles for the Vice President, and one is to check on the health of the President. And you joked a couple of weeks ago in Pennsylvania that that would be especially important in your case....What did you mean by that?"

     Even though McCain responded that he "will continue to use humor, and if any commentator chooses to take a humorous remark and turn it into something serious, they are free to do that," Bash still pressed him on the age issue: "But it -- but, understanding that completely, in all seriousness, when you're approaching who you're picking for the Vice President, do you think about your age as a factor?"

     The full transcript of the interview, which aired 15 minutes into the 5 pm Eastern hour of Tuesday's The Situation Room:

     JOHN KING: Now, does John McCain feel voters' pains when it comes to the economy? The Republican candidate on what his campaign calls its biography tour. He visited his old high school in northern Virginia today. CNN's Dana Bash accompanied the senator and sat down with him for a one-on-one interview.

     DANA BASH, CNN CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Senator, thank you for sitting down with us.
     MCCAIN: Thanks, Dana.

     BASH: The first question is about the issue that Americans do seem to care about the most -- and that's the economy. You've been very clear that because of your principle and because of your Republican philosophy, that you think that the government really should be limited and really should stay out, for the most part, of bailing out both homeowners and what you call irresponsible lenders. But my question is, in this time of uncertainty, when there are so many people hurting, are you concerned that there are voters out there who hear that who say, John McCain is heartless when it comes to this issue?
     MCCAIN: Well, actually, I think the government should facilitate a lot of things, and there have been numerous proposals, many of which I have supported and some that I will be coming forward with. What we really need to do is -- fundamentally -- is make sure that we take every action to have the lender and the borrower sit down together so that the millions of Americans who are facing terrible challenges will be able to afford to keep their home.
     We don't want greedy speculators, obviously, to profit. We don't want unscrupulous lenders to gain from this and spend taxpayers' dollars on it. But we should devote all our efforts -- and I will be, as I say, encouraging and trying to provide ways for incentivizing that process to happen and, if necessary, give the homeowners who are sitting around the kitchen table today saying, well, I have to get another job, will we stay in our home -- be able to do that. That does mean government helps out. What I worry about, of course, are massive bailouts that will then reward people who didn't behave well. But my efforts and my proposals will to be help that homeowner who is now experiencing a great trauma of losing the American dream.
     BASH: If the headlines that are on the front page of the newspapers today are the same headlines on the front pages in late October, early November, does John McCain lose?
     MCCAIN: I have no idea. I think that John McCain's experience, knowledge, background, and judgment on both national security and economic issues -- I've been involved in economic issues for the last 20 some years. I was chairman of the Commerce Committee that oversights all sectors, practically, of our economy. So I'm strong on the economy. I'm strong on national security. And the important thing will be my envision -- my vision for the future of this country.
     BASH: You're on this bio tour, this service tour that you're on. You're talking, obviously, a lot about your past and your experience. But by talking about the fact that you remember vividly -- at least your first vivid memory was the beginning of World War II, you're also maybe subtly reminding voters of your age. And I want to just read you some numbers from a recent 'Wall Street Journal' poll. Sixty-one percent said that they would elect somebody over 70, but 71 percent said they would elect a woman and 72 percent said a black. So it looks like voters are much more eager -- or at least able to elect a black or a woman than somebody of your age.
     MCCAIN: Well, that's interesting, because we are either tied or slightly ahead of both Senator Obama and Senator Clinton. So overall in the polls, I'm very satisfied, where we are, particularly since the generic ballot has Republicans trailing Democrats rather badly. So I'm very happy with where we are. And I'm very happy-
     BASH: Specifically on the age issue-
     MCCAIN: -to talk about the past and my values. But all of that is a prelude to the future. If you have experience and knowledge and background and judgment, that's what -- and vision for the future -- that's what the American people will, I believe, the factor that will decide whether they support me or not, and I'm very confident.
     BASH: One more question on this. You, when you're asked about who your vice president would be, you say that there are two real roles for the Vice President, and one is to check on the health of the president. And you joked a couple of weeks ago in Pennsylvania that that would be especially important in your case.
     MCCAIN: Sure.
     BASH: What did you mean by that? And I know you don't want to talk about the process of picking a Vice President, but in terms of your approach, do you, in all candor -- straight talk -- think about your age when you -- and the fact that you are 71 -- will be 72 when you are deciding who would be a potential president?
     MCCAIN: No. And in all candor, I will continue to use humor, and if any commentator chooses to take a humorous remark and turn it into something serious, they are free to do that. But I will continue to use humor, and I think the American people like to have a little humor from time to time.
     BASH: Absolutely.
     MCCAIN: And that was what that whole line was about.
     BASH: Absolutely. But it -- but, understanding that completely, in all seriousness, when you're approaching who you're picking for the Vice President, do you think about your age as a factor? And-
     MCCAIN: Not particularly, no. I think -- I think about whether that person who I select would be most prepared to take my place, and that would be the key criteria.
     KING: Senator John McCain earlier today.

 

Nets Focus on Border Fence Construction
'Sidestepping' Laws

     ABC News anchor Charlie Gibson, in a news brief on Tuesday's World News, spun the Bush administration's decision to fast-track the construction of a fence along the U.S.-Mexican border, focusing almost entirely on the "more than 30 laws and regulations to be bypassed," as the graphic accompanying the brief put it. Gibson announced: "The Bush administration today announced plans to speed up construction of the fence along the Mexican border by sidestepping more than 30 laws that now stand in the way. The administration says it will use its authority to bypass those laws in an attempt to finish 670 miles of fence along the southwest border by the end of the year."

     [This item, by Matthew Balan, was posted Wednesday afternoon on the MRC's blog, NewsBusters.org: newsbusters.org ]

     What Gibson left out is the fact that, as the Washington Post pointed out, the plan is "permitted under an exemption granted by Congress."

     Washington Post's "Environmental Laws to Be Waived for Fence," see: www.washingtonpost.com

     Katie Couric on CBS's Evening News, on the other hand, didn't leave out that detail, but seemed to bemoan the potential for environmental damage with the construction: "The Bush administration announced plans today to sidestep more than 30 environmental laws and regulations so it can finish a huge fence along the Mexican border. Congress gave Homeland Security the power to do that, and the department intends to build hundreds of miles of fence in California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas, including one section along the Rio Grande that environmentalists contend would hurt wildlife."

     Neither Gibson nor Couric seem to care about the "sidestepping" of laws by illegal immigrants. On the contrary, during the June 8, 2007 World News, Gibson lamented that Congress rejected the proposed "comprehensive immigration reform" bill at the time. In 2006, Couric devoted two of her "Free Speech" segments in the course of two weeks to promote amnesty for illegal immigrants.

     See previous CyberAlert items on Gibson: www.mrc.org and

     On Couric: www.mrc.org

 

NYT, CBS and The Independent All Mislead
on Record Food Stamp Use

     Many media outlets have hyped projected 2008 food stamp usage as a "record high," but as FNC's Brit Hume pointed out Wednesday night in showcasing a particularly misleading take in The Independent in London, a higher percent of Americans were on food stamps "back in the Clinton years." Hume showcased the London paper's Tuesday front page headline, "United States of America 2008: The Great Depression," which asserted that 28 million on food stamps in the U.S. represents "the highest level since the program was introduced in the 1960's." Hume noted: "But critics suggest, however, that that number is misleading since 28 million people would be just 9.2 percent of all Americans. Back in the Clinton years, food stamp distribution reached at an all-time high of almost 10 and a half percent in 1993 and 1994 and 10 percent in 1995."

     The Independent matched Monday's front page New York Times article, "As Jobs Vanish and Prices Rise, Food Stamp Use Nears Record," in which Erik Eckholm asserted "the number of Americans receiving food stamps is projected to reach 28 million in the coming year, the highest level since the aid program began in the 1960s..." Lifting that story, on Monday's CBS Evening News reporter Bill Whitaker ominously intoned: "With jobs declining and prices for basics -- food, fuel, medicine -- on the rise, more Americans are expected to turn to food stamps in the next year than at any time since the program began in the 1960s."

     [This item, by the MRC's Brent Baker, was posted Wednesday night on the MRC's blog, NewsBusters.org: newsbusters.org ]

     The April 1 story in The Independent, by David Usborne in New York, began: "Food stamps are the symbol of poverty in the US. In the era of the credit crunch, a record 28 million Americans are now relying on them to survive -- a sure sign the world's richest country faces economic crisis." See: www.independent.co.uk

     For an image of the "Great Depression" cover of the tabloid: www.independent.co.uk

     Wednesday' Investor's Business Daily (IBD) dug out the numbers and percentages from Department of Agriculture data and, in a Wednesday editorial, "Media 'Depression,'" scolded journalists: "It's been said the press notice the homeless problem only when a Republican's in office. The same could be said for food stamps, which the media now are using as an economic indicator."

     The April 2 editorial detailed:

...[T]he 28 million Americans who will use food stamps in 2008 is the highest number ever. But that raw number is a poor measure; it doesn't provide context.

What's relevant is the percentage of the population that's on food stamps. And the worst years there are 1993, 1994 and 1995.

Yes, it was during the second Camelot presidency that the largest portions of the population were using food stamps: 10.4% in 1993 and 1994, and 10% in 1995.

Even if 28 million Americans use food stamps in 2008 as projected " and eagerly reported " with 303.5 million people in the country, the rate of 9.2% would still be lower than those three Clinton years.

Any discussion of food stamps should also include eligibility rules, which have been altered through the years. At various times, it's been harder to get food stamps. One example: the years that followed the 1996 welfare reform. At other times, the standards have been relaxed, as they were with the 2002 farm bill.

Enlistment drives are another factor. (Where's the federal campaign to promote self-sufficiency rather than dependence?) Washington is currently promoting food stamps and changing the system from one of paper coupons to electronic debit cards in hopes that removing the public humiliation that comes with using food stamps will encourage more people to take part....

     END of Excerpt

     For the entire editorial: www.ibdeditorials.com


     Hume's April 2 "Grapevine" item:

The liberal British newspaper The Independent ran a front-page story yesterday with the heading, "United States of America 2008: The Great Depression." The problem is, the article is about food stamp usage and never mentions a depression. It says "28 million people in the U.S. will be using government food stamps to buy essential groceries, the highest level since the program was introduced in the 1960's."

But critics suggest, however, that that number is misleading since 28 million people would be just 9.2 percent of all Americans. Back in the Clinton years, food stamp distribution reached at an all-time high of almost 10 and a half percent in 1993 and 1994 and 10 percent in 1995.

Oh, and that front-page photo showing people standing on a relief line turns out to be three years old and has nothing to do with food stamps. The picture was taken back in 2005 and shows people lining up in New York for an annual free coat giveaway.

     Ken Shepherd's earlier NB item, "Independent's 'Great Depression' Photo Was From 2005 Coat Drive," reported how Jim Geraghty at National Review Online noted "the stark-looking photo for the paper's story was three years old." See: newsbusters.org

     The April 1 CyberAlert post, "CBS Follows NYT, Warns More Going on Food Stamps Than Since 1960s," recounted:

Monday's New York Times hyped a dire congressional study, and CBS jumped hours later with a matching story full of anecdotes and relying on the expertise of a left-wing activist -- naturally, unlabeled. "The economic slowdown has left a lot of Americans struggling to pay their bills," CBS Evening News anchor Katie Couric asserted, highlighting how "a congressional report projects a record 28 million will receive food stamps in the coming year."

Leading into a soundbite from a representative of the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, reporter Bill Whitaker ominously intoned: "With jobs declining and prices for basics -- food, fuel, medicine -- on the rise, more Americans are expected to turn to food stamps in the next year than at any time since the program began in the 1960s."

Whitaker moved on to more emotion, how one woman "is still stretching beans and her budget to feed her four boys and granddaughter," but "with Congress fighting over funding, millions like" her "won't find much more in the pot."

The front page New York Times headline over the article by Erik Eckholm, a former Carter administration political appointee: "As Jobs Vanish and Prices Rise, Food Stamp Use Nears Record."

"That's quite a melodramatic headline," the MRC's Clay Waters observed in a TimesWatch analysis of the Times story, taking on the headline's claim of vanishing jobs which CBS copied with a reference to declining jobs: "For one thing, what 'vanishing jobs'? The national unemployment rate for February was 4.8 percent, unchanged from January. The headline writer's source seems to be a Congressional Budget Office report 'citing expected growth in unemployment.' No jobs have 'vanished' yet, but that doesn't stop the Times."

The March 31 New York Times story began: "Driven by a painful mix of layoffs and rising food and fuel prices, the number of Americans receiving food stamps is projected to reach 28 million in the coming year, the highest level since the aid program began in the 1960s..."

     END of Excerpt of Previous CyberAlert

     For that CyberAlert item in full: www.mrc.org

 

MRC Launches 'Eyeblast' Online Video
Sharing Site

     The MRC on Wednesday distributed a press release announcing: "New Online Platform Revolutionizes Citizen Journalism, Conservative Networking. The Media Research Center has launched a groundbreaking, interactive news and entertainment platform designed to transform the world of online video-sharing and networking -- without the censorship or political agenda of YouTube."

     Text of the rest of the April 2 press release:

Eyeblast (www.Eyeblast.tv) is aimed at the next generation of conservatives and at conservative organizations. It combines the video-sharing qualities of YouTube with the social-networking capability of Facebook to pull the digital, interactive components into one space. People can create, share and view videos, audio and other content on topics that are important to them, ranging from current events and politics to entertainment. Unlike any other online platform, Eyeblast simultaneously allows users to upload their own content, connect with friends, classmates and colleagues, and make new acquaintances.

Eyeblast is more than a one-stop shop for the online community; its Web 2.0 functionality provides the most comprehensive digital portal to date and allows users to:

# View and search videos, including those embedded from YouTube and other video-sharing sites;

# Embed videos in their blogs and Web sites

# Upload their own videos

# Get individual or organizational channels to promote their videos

# Rate and store favorite videos, and "blast" them to their friends

# Create profiles and groups

# Invite friends to join groups

     MRC President Brent Bozell sees Eyeblast as a gateway to a more educated and informed society, especially the Internet generation.

"Eyeblast is a leapfrog in technology for the conservative movement," stated Brent Bozell, President of the Media Research Center. "We have harnessed the capabilities of various online networks into one place that is free of censorship. Google, YouTube and the liberal media have squashed certain information due to its conservative bent. Eyeblast does not discriminate based upon political view. It is an online location where all sides are welcome to share. We especially hope to capture the attention of conservative college students and those under 30 who are longing for a place to connect with other conservatives."

     END Reprint of press release

     Check out Eyblast and become a user at: www.Eyeblast.tv

-- Brent Baker

 


Sign up for CyberAlerts:
     Keep track of the latest instances of media bias and alerts to stories the major media are ignoring. Sign up to receive CyberAlerts via e-mail.

Subscribe!
Enter your email to join MRC CyberAlert today!

 

questions and comments about CyberAlert subscription

     You can also learn what has been posted each day on the MRC’s Web site by subscribing to the “MRC Web Site News” distributed every weekday afternoon. To subscribe, go to: http://www.mrc.org/cybersub.asp#webnews

 


Home | News Division | Bozell Columns | CyberAlerts 
Media Reality Check | Notable Quotables | Contact the MRC | Subscribe

Founded in 1987, the MRC is a 501(c) (3) non-profit research and education foundation
 that does not support or oppose any political party or candidate for office.

Privacy Statement

Media Research Center
325 S. Patrick Street
Alexandria, VA 22314