Mar
02
2010

Only Rahm Emanuel Can Save You Now

White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel has always been a controversial figure–famously profane and short-tempered, and politically speaking a center-right Clinton Democrat. As of late, though, there's been a strange effort–particularly in the Washington Post–to present Emanuel as the confidant whose political advice Barack Obama has too often ignored and who offers a clear path to political rehabilitation. This only makes sense in a Beltway media that views Obama as too far to the left, and in need of Emanuel's pragmatic centrism to pull him back to the middle. This campaign was kicked off by a February 21 Dana […]

Feb
16
2010

Dana Milbank, Snow and Climate Change

Washington Post columnist Dana Milbank thinks it's pretty silly for Republicans and climate change deniers to say that the recent snowstorms mean that climate change is phony. BUT…. don't think for a second that Milbank's going to let "greens" off the hook that easy. No way. As he put it on Sunday (2/14/10): "There's some rough justice in the conservatives' cheap shots. In Washington's blizzards, the greens were hoist by their own petard." How so? Climate activists "have argued by anecdote to make their case," especially Al Gore, who has warned of a whole menuof negative consequences from climate change. […]

Feb
05
2010

Dana Milbank Misses the Mythical John McCain

"I miss John McCain," writes the Washington Post's Dana Milbank today (2/5/10). Milbank calls himself "an original McCainiac"–by which he means that he, like so many others in the corporate media, adored the so-called "maverick"John McCain of the 2000 presidential campaign. As we've pointed out plenty of times before, McCain's Senate record has staunchly conservative throughout his career–except for those anomalous years, just before and after his unsuccessful bid for the 2000 Republican presidential nomination, when the press mostly fell in love with him. Wishing for that McCain to return is akin to wishing that politician would just lie to […]

Dec
07
2009

Dana Milbank and the Church of Obama

The Washington Post's Dana Milbank (12/6/09) thinks there's something wrong with left-wing critics of Barack Obama.As his lead put it: Some parishioners in the Church of Obama discovered last week that their spiritual leader is a false prophet. Milbank startswith Michael Moore, who wrote an open letter urging Obama not to escalate the Afghanistan war.This makes no sense to Milbank, since Obama never said he'd withdraw troops.Well, yes. I suspect many of Obama's critics–maybeeven Michael Moore–are aware of that.Moore also supports single-payer healthcare, and wishes Obama would too. Does that mean that continuing that advocacy with Obama in the White […]

Sep
22
2009

The Neverending 2008 Presidential Campaign

Remember back in 2007/2008 when Democratic candidate Barack Obama was being called an elitist? Well, if you miss that kind of media coverage, the Washington Post's Dana Milbank has got you covered (9/18/09) here, writing up Michelle Obama's visitto aD.C. farmers market: The promotion of organic and locally grown food, though an admirable cause, is a risky one for the Obamas, because there's a fine line between promoting healthful eating and sounding like a snob. The president, when he was a candidate in 2007, got in trouble in Iowa when he asked a crowd, "Anybody gone into Whole Foods lately […]

Aug
09
2009

WaPo 'Screw-You' Video Follows 'Mad Bitch' Offense

Guest Women In Media & News blogger Adele M. Stan (8/5/09) has some more to say about the WashingtonPost.com's "now-infamous 'Mad Bitch' video": Last Friday, Talking Points Memo's Brian Beutler shone a light on a video produced by the Washington Post that featured one of the two columnists hosting the piece suggesting that, at a future White House beer summit, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton be given a brew called "Mad Bitch." Then all hell broke loose. The Post apparently thought it could fix the problem by simply pulling the video. A note was posted above the hole where the […]

Aug
07
2009

Snarky WaPo-er 'Surprised by the Ferocity out There'

Howard Kurtz recently offered fellow Washington Post reporters Dana Milbank and Chris Cillizza a chance to apologize for having, in an online Post feature, "implied Hillary Clinton was a 'bitch.'" But American Prospect's Tapped blogger Adam Serwer (8/5/09) has a question regarding Milbank's aside that "it's a brutal world out there in the blogosphere…. I'm often surprised by the ferocity out there, but I probably shouldn't be": What's the sound of a million hands facepalming? No one who goes around using obscenities to describe other reporters and administration officials should be complaining about the "ferocity" of blogs–if Milbank is bothered […]

Jun
26
2009

Why I Couldn't Say What Dan Froomkin Said Reporters Should Do

I wrote a short item on Dan Froomkin's firing for FAIR's radio show CounterSpin today: One of the bright spots at the Washington Post media enterprise was Dan Froomkin's column, "White House Watch," for WashingtonPost.com. It often struck us that Froomkin had a whole different attitude–skeptical of those in power, and critical of their journalistic enablers–than most of his colleagues at the Post Co. So it was perhaps not too surprising to hear that Froomkin, one of the Post's most popular online writers, had been fired–not long after his column was placed under the authority of editorial page editor Fred […]

Jun
12
2009

Inside Dana Milbank's Bubble

In his June 11 Washington Post column about a Capitol Hill hearing featuring single-payer advocates (imagine that!), Dana Milbank sheds no light on the policy debate, but manages to reveal just how deeply enveloped he is inside the Beltway bubble. "Socialism is not dead," smirks Milbank. "It has, however, been confined to a House subcommittee." The columnist oozes condescension for single-payer activists at the hearing for harboring the quaint presumption they might get any real attention in Washington with their unpopular policy. Writes Milbank: President Obama said it would be a "huge disruption." Democratic lawmakers ignored the single-payer crowd so […]

Jun
12
2009

Broder Column-Generator Strikes Again

Washington Post columnist David Broder has made a career out of advocating a certain type of corporate centrism–earning him the honorary (?) title of the Dean of the D.C. Press Corps. The formula is pretty simple: Argue that Democratic politicians should move to the right. So with healthcare reform a major issue, Broder's formula is easy: Barack Obama should reject his party's support for a "public option" government plan that would compete against private insurance companies. Why should Obama do this? Well, according to Broder, the appealing thing is that some lawmakers–mostly Republicans, though he mentions Democratic Sen. Ron Wyden […]

May
07
2009

Dana Milbank Stamps His Foot at the Unfairness of Google

In a column attacking Google and other "accused newspaper industry killers," the Washington Post's Dana Milbank (5/7/09) doesn't present much of an argument for why newspapers are dying–but he provides an excellent example of why journalism like his deserves to die. [Marissa] Mayer, who oversees Google News, explained how "Google is doing its part" to preserve journalism–by keeping the lion's share of ad revenue before directing readers to newspaper sites. "Google News and Google search provide a valuable service to online newspapers specifically by sending interested readers to their sites," she said. Oh? Let's plug in "Senate Commerce Committee 'Future […]

Oct
18
2008

The Hazards of Reporting on Palin Rallies

Via TPM, we read about a reporter (Capital Beat, 10/16/08) who got knocked down at a Sarah Palin rally in North Carolina because he tried to interview an Obama supporter. This seems like the natural progression from the earlier report of Palin inciting her followers to hurl obscenities and racist insults at journalists. And, you know, maybe if your crowds are already shouting abuse at reporters, you should refrain from distributing songs that begin, "The left-wing liberal media have always been a real close-knit family/But most of the American people don't believe them anyway, you see." In a related story, […]