Media

Fournier’s lie

Featured image When I heard former AP Washington bureau chief Ron Fournier state in passing on a recent Fox News Special Report panel that “Bush lied us into war in Iraq,” I just groaned. Fournier has moved on from the AP to become senior political correspondent and editorial director of National Journal. Fournier presents himself as the moderate voice of reason and common sense, and he is a distinguished journalist, but the »

The non-mystery of Scott Walker’s college career

Featured image In a reliable sign that Scott Walker is now a first-tier presidential prospect, the media wants to know what he thinks about evolution. Walker’s answer — “that’s a question a politician shouldn’t be involved in one way or the other” — is a sign that he can live up to first-tier status. Here’s another reliable sign that Walker is in the first-tier: the Washington Post is probing the “mystery” of »

Who Will Replace Jon Stewart?

Featured image Jon Stewart is retiring from Comedy Central, possibly to run for office as a Democrat. Stewart is a liberal who devoted pretty much his entire show to bashing conservatives, although he occasionally trained his fire on Democrats, thereby obtaining an undeserved reputation for objectivity. So who will replace him? Comedy Central could make a truly bold move and replace Stewart with a Republican, but of course they won’t. The monopoly »

The senseless suspension of Brian Williams [With Comments by John]

Featured image NBC News has suspended Brian Williams for six months as punishment for lying about being shot at in Iraq and, quite likely, telling other tall or embellished tales. NBC News stated that Williams “misrepresented” events in a broadcast last Friday about his coverage of the Iraq War in 2003, and that “it then became clear that on other occasions Brian had done the same while telling that story in other »

If it bleeds it leads. . .to denial by Obama

Featured image John did a great job of ripping President Obama’s pathetic musings on terrorism, as served up to Matthew Yglesias of Vox.com. I want to focus on Obama’s claim that the media “absolutely” sometimes overstates the level of alarm people should have about terrorism. Obama offered no evidence to support this claim. He merely asserted it, adding that he doesn’t blame the media for following the “the famous saying. . .if »

More tears for Piers

Featured image Piers Morgan is no longer on American television, thank God. But he’s still serving up embarrassing soccer commentary. Before Saturday’s North London Derby between Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur, Morgan tweeted that Spurs emerging star Harry Kane “wouldn’t get on [Arsenal's] bench.” Kane proceeded to score the two goals that gave Tottenham a famous 2-1 victory over their bitter rivals. Kane is the hottest forward in the Premier League. Arguably, he’s »

What Has Dan Rather Got Against Brian Williams?

Featured image Dan Rather has come to the defense of Brian Williams, calling Williams “an honest man.”  Dan ought to know!  Is he trying to destroy Williams?*  (Maybe he thinks he can get the anchor chair himself.)  Good thing I wasn’t drinking coffee when I spotted this Breitbart item: Disgraced former TV news anchor Dan Rather has come to the aid of embattled NBC anchor Brian Williams, saying that Williams is an »

Lying isn’t what it used to be

Featured image Lying used to be an offense that caused people to stop trusting and believing you. Now, it’s a “mistake” that’s to be weighed against the liar’s virtues before deciding if he is to be trusted. I noticed this in my law practice. When I first started out, you hit the litigation jackpot if you could show that the opposing party had lied about any semi-material fact. If you showed this »

The New York Times Commits One of Its Funniest Blunders Ever

Featured image Via Don Surber and Logan Dobson, another knee-slapper from the editorial board of the New York Times. The paper published an editorial attacking Scott Walker yesterday. Nothing noteworthy about that, except that the Times kept calling him “Mr. Scott.” Here is a screen grab; Dobson tweeted, “NYTimes Edit Board ruthlessly attacks some guy named ‘Mr. Scott’ who they claim is the governor of Wisconsin”: The paper eventually realized its mistake »

Brian’s big fog

Featured image On FNC’s Kelly File last night Megyn Kelly interviewed Stars and Stripes reporter Travis Tritten about NBC News anchor Brian Williams’s tall tales (video below). The interview proceeds methodically to trace Williams’s adornments and refinements to a tall tale he has been telling for more than ten years, capped off by a mendacious apology attributing his fabrications to the “fog of memory.” Kelly pierces the fog in this lucid interview. »

Has NBC Started a Countdown Clock for Firing Brian Williams?

Featured image The New York Post‘s Page Six reports that Tom Brokaw wants Brian Williams fired from NBC News for his lies about his helicopter bravura: You know you’re in trouble when Tom Brokaw is out for your blood. NBC’s most revered journalist is furious that Brian Williams is still in the anchor chair after he sheepishly admitted he hadn’t traveled on a helicopter hit by enemy fire. “Brokaw wants Williams’ head on a platter,” an »

Rather symmetrical

Featured image Dan Rather is either a little lacking in self-awareness or he wants to pound the final nail into Brian Williams’s coffin. Yesterday Rather spoke up for Brian Williams as Williams seeks to withstand the critique of his Big (Oft-Repeated) Lie. Politico’s Dylan Byers reached out to Rather for comment and obtained this gem: “I don’t know the particulars about that day in Iraq,” Rather told POLITICO. “I do know Brian. »

Lies are lies whether they “offend” or not

Featured image NBC’s Chuck Todd assures us that NBC’s Brian Williams is “mortified” by the recent revelation that, for 12 years, he falsely claimed to have been in an aircraft that was shot down during the Iraq War. Todd also says that what’s “stinging [Williams] the most” is that the last group of people he wants to offend are veterans. Todd confesses, however, that he hasn’t talked to Williams yet. This raises »

Rather insane

Featured image I have (at least) one more (forgive me!) note on Rathergate as I prepare for my talk next Thursday at Lyon College on “Rathergate Ten Years After.” Rereading Peter Wallsten’s September 20, 2012, Los Angeles Times article identifying Atlanta attorney Harry MacDougald as Buckhead, the guy who played a key role in the chain of events leading to the downfall of the story, we can observe the Democrats’ secondary response »

Kitzhaber cant

Featured image We are saturated in left-wing media. I think it is literally impossible to imagine a world in which the media were impartial, or fair, or tilted right rather than left. Professor Tim Groseclose nevertheless brings the methodology of quantitative social science to the task in Left Turn: How Liberal Media Bias Distorts the American Mind and the results are fascinating. To clarify her own thinking as she worked on the »

Rather full of it

Featured image I will have the honor of giving the annual Patterson Lecture at Lyon College in Batesville, Arkansas, next week on the evening of February 12. I’ll be speaking on “Rathergate Ten Years After.” The college has posted the announcement with the relevant information here. I look forward to reconnecting with Lyon College President Don Weatherman, who began his academic career at St. Catherine University (St. Kate’s) in St. Paul. In »

Resist this

Featured image Steve Coll is dean of the Columbia Journalism School and an accomplished reporter in his own right. He is a staff writer for the New Yorker and the author of Ghost Wars: The Secret History of the CIA, Afghanistan and bin Laden and the Soviet Invasion, From the Soviet Invasion to September 10, 2011, among other books. He reports on issues of intelligence and national security and in the journalism »