Sep
01
2014

Israel, Gaza and False Balance

Media construct a symmetry of violence where none exists

ABC's 'Israeli' family

Striving for a deceptive “balance,” US media miscast the devastating violence of Israel’s attacks on Gaza and obscured the lopsided nature of the death toll.

Sep
01
2014

A Shared Culture of Conflict of Interest

Elite media don’t see Human Rights Watch’s closeness to power as a problem

Kenneth Roth

Human Rights Watch's conflicts of interest contribute to a culture of normalizing and accommodating the extreme power that the United States arrogates to itself.

Aug
29
2014

Brian Jones on Teacher Tenure, Nikole Hannah-Jones on School Segregation

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This week on CounterSpin: A special back to school episode, with two interviews from this year that get at some of the thorniest issues around public education: The politics of teacher tenure and the de facto segregation of American schools. Our guests are writer and activist Brian Jones and Nikole Hannah-Jones of ProPublica.

Aug
28
2014

Labor Almost Invisible on TV Talk

Sunday chat shows skip worker representatives

sunday-labor

Have any labor leaders appeared on the Sunday chat shows this year? No, unless you count one reference to Ronald Reagan.

Aug
22
2014

Malkia Cyril on Ferguson, Jeff Cohen on James Risen

msnbc-ferguson

This week on CounterSpin: The New York Times' David Carr says 'nothing much good was happening in Ferguson until it became a hashtag'. It's naïve to think that media attention to the police killing of unarmed black teenager Michael Brown is enough to address the crisis it represents, but Carr's not wrong that it was the internet and not corporate media that put the story on the front burner. We'll talk about Ferguson and media with Malkia Cyril of the Center for Media Justice.

Also on the show: Will New York Times reporter James Risen go to jail for refusing to testify against a source? Risen's case is seen by many as a clear-cut example of how the Obama administration's war on whistleblowers is also a war on journalists and journalism. We'll talk to FAIR founder Jeff Cohen, director of the Park Center for Independent Media about the state of the case and the activist pushback.

Aug
21
2014

NYT Responds on Torture

Public editor sees FAIR's point on Amnesty report

ny-amnesty

New York Times public editor Margaret Sullivan responded to a FAIR Action Alert by saying that she agreed coverage of an Amnesty International report about US torture in Afghanistan "would have benefited Times readers."

Aug
18
2014

NYT Would Call It Torture--If It Covered Torture

Ignoring Amnesty report on US torture program

Naimatullah, Afghan torture witness (CBS)

After more than a decade of criticism, the New York Times executive editor Dean Baquet announced (8/7/14) that when the paper reports on US torture, it will call it "torture" (FAIR Blog, 8/8/14). But what if the paper decides that well-documented evidence of US torture is not fit to print? On August 11, Amnesty International released a lengthy report about abuses in Afghanistan committed by US forces and others, including Afghan security. The report includes serious allegations about US Special Forces torturing Afghan civilians. The Amnesty report has received some attention in US outlets, including the LA Times (8/11/14), Washington […]

Aug
15
2014

Vijay Prashad on IS and Iraq, Emira Woods on Africa Summit

isis-nbc

This week on CounterSpin: With the Islamic State, or IS, occupying large swathes of Iraq and Syria, a common refrain from politicians and pundits is to suggest that the group would not be a menace had the US intervened earlier and more deeply in the Syrian civil war. Author and professor Vijay Prashad will join us to address that canard and other misconceptions about Iraq, the US and the Islamic State.

Also on the show: The recent summit of African leaders in Washington DC was criticized by some for soft-pedaling human rights issues, but that only meant in African nations; media seemed to have no question at all about the beneficent goals of the policy of increased 'investment' on the continent by US corporations. We have some questions; we'll ask them of Emira Woods of ThoughtWorks and the Institute for Policy Studies.