FishbowlNY TVNewser TVSpy LostRemote AgencySpy PRNewser GalleyCat SocialTimes

Analysis

Bill Press Wonders, What’s Good About Washington?

Lefty radio host Bill Press wrote a column Monday about This Town (that’s column #9,345,789 across the D. C. media landscape, by the way) in which he started out saying, “Because nobody else will defend Washington, I guess I’ll have to.”

Yes! Finally. We got out our popcorn, grabbed a seat in the comfy spot on the couch and then… read 7 of 9 paragraphs in The Hill explaining how D.C. is actually a lot like how This Town describes it. That can’t be all you got, is it Bill?

Actually, he has some ideas…

Read more

Anonymous Sourcing: Haberman Style

The more creative anonymous sourcing gets the harder it is to guess who may be doing the talking. And in Washington, it’s rampant as many sensitive spokespeople hardly ever want to go on the record about anything no matter how important or absurdly innocuous the information may be.

In Politico this morning is a whopper of an insider story by Maggie Haberman published at 4:59 a.m. on Huma Abedin, the victim-scorned wife of New York mayoral hopeful Anthony Weiner. The larger point of the story is that Huma’s friends, who once had her “support,” now have their “concern.” In short: What the hell is she still doing with him? They don’t come out that boldly, but just enough to get their point across. While her friends are “concerned,” the media, writes Haberman, has gone from “sympathetic” to “savage.” The piece uses mostly anonymous sourcing outside of Clinton Camp intimate and CNN Contributor Paul Begala. Here is the impressive variety of anonymous descriptors she used:

1. “her friends.”

2. “their worry”

3. Our favorite: “The feelings about Weiner in Clintonland are unequivocal, according to one someone close to the couple: ‘Everyone’s done with him.’”

4. “Multiple sources familiar with the Clintons’ thinking”

5. “Everyone loves her to death,” said a Clinton ally who’s worked with her.

6. “sources said”

7. “Clinton insiders and allies insist they don’t believe Abedin has become a liability for the former Secretary of State…”

8. “Within Clinton-world…”

9. “’Two years ago [it was] caring about Huma, and now it’s concern for Huma,’ said a second Clinton ally, who, like almost everyone interviewed, asked not to be identified.”

10. “said one senior Democrat, who asked for anonymity”

 11. “One Clinton insider…”

12. “One source”

13. “Another source”

14. “Several other people with ties to the Clintons say…”

15. “Clinton aides say…”

16. “Several Clinton allies pointed out…”

Yahoo Gets Inspiration From Now This News

On Wednesday morning, Yahoo published this piece on Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minn.). The headline is “What is it like to be a Muslim in Congress?” It’s no secret that Ellison is one of the only two Muslims in the U.S. Congress. The other is Andre Carson (D-Ind.). He’s an interesting character. Young, extremely liberal, African-American, and he’s in the middle of Ramadan. During the holiday, observing Muslims fast from sunrise to sunset, which can be a drain on Ellison. He tells Yahoo that he limits his physical activity during the day while celebrating the month.

On top of all that, he plays guitar. Yahoo made sure to get video of Ellison jamming in his office. While he cranks out a little “This Land is Your Land,” ABC’s Jeff Zeleny, who conducts the interview, awkwardly watches on.

It’s rare that we get to see members of Congress cut loose like this so, it’s refreshing. Except for Yahoo, this isn’t such an original idea.  Read more

What You Should Think, Nate Silver Edition

We’ve read a bunch of opinion pieces on Nate Silver this week, mostly so you don’t have to—because we know how much some of you hate him. The highlights:

You’re Fired!

NYT‘s Public Editor, Margaret Sullivan, wrote in a recent column that after praising Nate Silver, she was contacted by three “high-profile” political reporters at the paper “criticizing him and his work. They were also tough on me for seeming to endorse what he wrote, since I was suggesting that it get more visibility.” She thinks this is because Silver’s style of data-based journalism threatened the more… traditional way they covered politics. In other words, he made them feel irrelevant and they lashed out at Sullivan. Mother Jones’ Kevin Drum thinks this is a firing offense. “Even for those of us who are pretty cynical about political reporting, this is astonishing. If I were editor of the Times, I’d do whatever it took to find out who those three are, and then fire them instantly,” he says. Let’s see… fire a reporter who reacts badly out of an inflated sense of self-importance and ego. If that’s the standard, journalism could be in more trouble than we thought.

The Guy Who Doesn’t Get It, But Thinks He Does

David Hill‘s columns at The Hill are normally confounding, and this week’s on Silver is no exception. He spends a lot of time explaining how Silver will fail in his switch to ESPN for reason’s he can’t quite articulate, other than that “(l)ots of Web clicks, even millions of clicks, for a few months every four years does not qualify as mass media by most standards.” Really? Let’s be clear—Hill has absolutely no idea what Silver’s traffic at the Times is, or when. He’s speculating, and poorly. Scratch that, he’s just making stuff up to prove a point that seems to elude even him, facts or truth be damned. He says there isn’t enough interest out there for Silver to make it beyond his “15 minutes of fame at The New York Times,” (is Hill’s watch that slow?) and then tells us how he had the idea to exactly what Silver does “probably before Silver was born.” The kicker is Hill doesn’t seem to actually totally understand what Silver does—it’s statistics and probabilities and data modeling and that’s… science. So why would Hill, a Republican, take time to understand it? To top it off, this column follows one a few weeks back in which he calls big-data a “craze”  that threatens polling standards and then excoriates the Obama campaign for perceived ethical lapses in microtargeting voters. Nevermind Karl Rove pioneered microtargeting years earlier for Bush. Facts are not Hill’s strong point. Read more

Black, Conservative, and Looking for Justice for Trayvon?

One of those things in the headline does not belong.

When we got a tip this weekend about a site called Black Conservatives for Trayvon, we were skeptical. The “conservative” part of that title surprised us, and well—the site’s founder, Richard Fair—an Ohio political activist whose Linkedin Profile says he works for Dell, sort of expects that.

“We will be accused of heresy because we don’t kiss the rings of the pundit popes of conservatism. We will be called ‘pseudo-conservatives’ because we vehemently reject the idea that an unarmed adolescent boy was justifiably killed because of social media pictures, skittles, and a hoodie.”

Before you get too excited, Fair assures us that while he’s “pro justice for Trayvon Martin,” he’s also still “pro second amendment, pro national security, pro-life, pro educational choice, pro free enterprise…” That’s actually the first line on the site.

Read more

Media Takes Sides on Zimmerman Decision

After continual media coverage of the George Zimmerman trial in the shooting of Trayvon Martin and more than 16 hours of deliberation by the jury, Zimmerman was acquitted of charges of second-degree murder and manslaughter over the weekend.

Since the shooting occurred last year, the case has been heavily followed by the media, with some outlets taking clear, strong stances. Now that the not-guilty verdict has been announced, some publications are being even more outspoken on the matter. We looked at a wide array of news organizations to analyze each publication’s own verdict of the case.

Read more

Richard Grenell Chews on ThinkProgress

Fox News media contributor Richard Grenell is gnawing away at the liberal minded ThinkProgress this afternoon like they were the last drumstick at the weekend barbecue. And he’s famished. As observers know, when Grenell sets his mind to a cause there’s no turning back. And today’s charge against the liberal biased media was: Why aren’t Democratic news outlets covering the blockbuster story of San Diego Mayor Bob Filner‘s admitted sexual harassment?

Some nine minutes later — yes, NINE — ThinkProgress tweeted out a story on Filner and his sexually wayward admission this week — and Grenell revealed his incisors and well, went nuts.

To be fair, Grenell also attacked MSNBC.

Annie-Rose Strasser, ThinkProgresses‘ Deputy Managing Editor took issue with Grenell’s charge and unleashed the dogs on him. You don’t even want to know what happened next. Well, yes, you do. Read on. Let’s just say things sometimes have to get worse before they get better. Read more

Dumbass Pitches

Look at this dog! He’s chill as hell and about to chow down on some grubbage. But behind that mellow smile, that pooch may be in serious pain. One of the trends in veterinary medicine is giving your pets medicinal marijuana to help them with their ailments.

It sounds silly, but we actually got this Dumbass Pitch in our inbox. Certified Animal Behavior Consultant, Expert on Animal Behavior, Darlene Arden, is making herself available to talk about this “growing movement to give medical marijuana to pets in pain.” Don’t bogart that milkbone, bro.

What questions is this “expert” ready to discuss? Read more

What’s Fournier Tweeting?

Road trip! Fournier-style! Last week, National Journal’s Ron Fournier tweeted “This is my daughter’s wedding day.” Congratch, Ron. It’s a big day. My children are too young to be married, so I’m basing that sentiment on the Steve Martin movies. This big event means that the Fournier family trucked it to Detroit Rock City. Naturally, Fournier tweeted his whole excursion. Well, I’ll give him a LITTLE credit. He didn’t tweet the actual wedding ceremony. What he’s doing is embarking on a bizarre travelogue of commentary and photos profiling the state of Michigan as he sees it. Naturally, he’s using the hashtag “#puremichigan” all along the way.

Ready for a tour of Fournier Fun? Yeah, neither am I, but let’s jump in anyway.  Read more

What’s Matthew Boyle Tweeting?

Windbag Investigative journalist Matthew Boyle from Breitbart hasn’t had the best track record on reporting stories for the site since he jumped from The Daily Caller at the end of 2012. (Remember when he reported that Republicans were planning on kicking John Boehner to the curb as Speaker of the House?)

Despite his missteps, Boyle seems to have found his niche in the immigration issue. While conservatives can’t seem to make up their minds about who is leading the way, Boyle is taking no prisoners in harshly judging any conservative lawmakers who agree to any legislation that remotely resembles amnesty for undocumented immigrants in this country.

Boyle has spent a lot of time praising the work of Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX). Cruz has been vocal in fighting any “path to citizenship,” so Boyle has latched onto him.

The only problem is, Boyle isn’t totally sure what the hell Cruz is saying. Read more

<< PREVIOUS PAGENEXT PAGE >>