May
05
2014

Silly Environmentalists, Getting Upset Over a Little Pipeline

Canadian Tar Sands--Photo Credit: Jiri Rezac/Greenpeace

'Both sides' are exaggerating the impact of the Keystone XL pipeline, says a Washington Post reporter. He's half-right.

May
01
2014

USA Today Blowing Smoke on Benghazi 'Smoking Gun'

Benghazi

USA Today's headline was "GOP Calls New Benghazi E-Mail 'Smoking Gun.'" What the memo actually proves is that "scandal" is defined as any deviation from the fantasy world jointly created by the Republican Party and its media accomplices.

Apr
11
2014

Let's Stop Looking at the Downside of Climate Change

WildfireWildfire in Oregon (cc photo: H Dragon)

New York Times op-ed writers shed crocodile tears over the prospect that climate advocates they have done their level best to undermine might not be getting their message out effectively.

Apr
09
2014

No, Putin Isn't Following 'Reagan Playbook' in Ukraine–Thank God

Death squad victims, El Salvador (cc photo: John Hoagland)

When the Washington Post's David Ignatius writes a column headlined "Putin Steals the CIA's Playbook on Anti-Soviet Covert Operations," is that supposed to be a criticism or a compliment?

Apr
03
2014

The Point of Limiting Donations Isn't to Make Elections Cheaper or Less Irritating

Money as speech

The point of contribution limits isn't to make elections cheaper; it's to limit the ability of the very wealthy to dominate politics.

Mar
31
2014

Intelligence Sources Play an Early April Fool's Joke on NBC News

Brian Williams report on Russia and Ukraine

US intelligence claims about a Russian troop buildup on the Ukrainian border are just that–claims. On NBC Nightly News, however, anchor Brian Williams and Pentagon correspondent Jim Miklaszewski not only took these claims as gospel, they used them as the jumping off point for alarmist speculation.

Mar
27
2014

PhRMA's Money Affects Human Lives–and Journalism Too

Pharmaceuticals (cc photo: Erich Ferdinand)

Josh Marshall announces that Idea Lab: Impact will be "sponsored by the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America." Yes, PhRMA, the lobbying group that has helped make the marketing of medicine one of the most profitable industries in America.

Mar
27
2014

WaPo's Twisted Take on Poor People Eating

Mark Lester in 'Oliver'

The Washington Post describes state efforts to make sure poor recipients remain eligible for food stamp benefits as a "loophole…potentially wiping out billions of dollars in savings Congress agreed to last month."

Mar
19
2014

Are Charter Schools Really 'Helping Poor Children'?

Harlem Success Academy (cc photo: Multitude)

The "usual measurement" offered by columnist Richard Cohen as proof of the value of charter schools offers no evidence that charter school students are any better off at all.

Mar
07
2014

Denying the Far-Right Role in the Ukrainian Revolution

Flags of the Ukrainian Nationalist Congress (cc photo: Antanana/Wikimedia)

To maintain a simple good vs. evil framework, the fact that Ukraine's neo-fascist movement had a significant role in the opposition to Yanukovych–and the government that replaced him–was downplayed or even outright denied.

Feb
24
2014

New York Times Critic Doesn't Care What Foreigners Have to Say

Piers Morgan (cc photo: GL Johnson)

New York Times media columnist David Carr (2/24/14) seems to think the relationship between CNN and Piers Morgan was doomed from the start: It's been an unhappy collision between a British television personality who refuses to assimilate–the only football he cares about is round and his lectures on guns were rife with contempt–and a CNN audience that is intrinsically provincial. After all, the people who tune into a cable news network are, by their nature, deeply interested in America. That's a peculiar way to define "provincial"; surely one can be deeply interested in the United States and deeply interested in […]

Feb
22
2014

News From Venezuela–but Where Is It Coming From?

San Christobal, Venezuela (Caracas Chronicles)

How trustworthy are reports that "state-sponsored paramilitaries" are "shooting at anyone who seemed like he might be protesting" against the government of Venezuela?

Feb
18
2014

Bob Schieffer Is Tired of Your Fancy Talk

Bob Schieffer

Face the Nation host Bob Schieffer had a classic example of anti-populist populism.