ABC: That’s What They Call Journalism!

ABC reporter Jonathan Karl clarifies the budget stalemate that nearly shut down the federal government (ABC World News, 4/7/11): KARL: And believe it or not, the issue of abortion could be what causes the government to shut down. GRAPHICS: DEMOCRATS CLAIM KARL: Democrats say Republicans are trying to use the funding bill to force new restrictions on abortion rights. GRAPHICS: REPUBLICANS CLAIM KARL: But Republicans say they are simply trying to restrict public funding of abortion. “Democrats say, Republicans say.” ABC could save money and program a computer to do this. Later Karl said this: Today, House Republicans did pass […]


Time Marriage ‘Concern’ Really Just ‘Attack on Liberals’

In Katha Pollitt’s latest Nation column (7/15/09), she finds it “not hard to poke holes in” the July 2 Time magazine cover story by “Caitlin Flanagan–professional antifeminist, author of a whole book of essays attacking working mothers, herself excepted”–being full of “Flanagan’s predictions of universal doom for the children of divorced or never-married parents”: After all, President Clinton and President Obama turned out all right. Most children of divorce do. There are plenty of countries where divorce and unmarried parenthood are common, but children do fine–Sweden, France, Germany, the Netherlands. Some of the measured bad effects on kids are more […]


Media Men Debate Women’s Rights

Columnist Katha Pollitt (Nation, 6/10/09) has examined the extent to which, “in the immediate aftermath of Dr. Tiller’s murder, it was astonishing how many men were called upon to weigh in on abortion on national television”: CNN featured William Schneider, Sanjay Gupta and Bill Press. On Fox, Bill O’Reilly defended his use of “baby killer” and “death mill” to describe Dr. Tiller and his clinic. On MSNBC, Keith Olbermann–who the last time I checked in spent a whole segment making fun of Miss Anti-Gay Marriage California’s breast implants with waspish misogynist Michael Musto–had only men: Slate‘s Will Saletan, who thinks […]


Not Much ‘Intellectual Heavy Lifting’ at New York Magazine

In a column on media treatment of Michelle Obama, Katha Pollitt (Nation, 4/20/09) points out this forehead-smacking quote from New York magazine’s David Samuels (3/15/09): There are clear limits to Michelle’s ambition. She went to excellent schools, got decent grades, stayed away from too much intellectual heavy lifting, and held a series of practical, modestly salaried jobs while accommodating her husband’s wilder dreams and raising two lovely daughters. In this, she is a more practical role model for young women than Hillary Clinton, blending her calculations about family and career with an expectation of normal personal happiness. To which Pollitt […]


Liberal Blogger Men Love Conservative Columnist Man

Resisting the tide of “liberal blogger men” who “are thrilled with the New York Times‘ appointment of 29-year-old Atlantic blogger Ross Douthat to replace William Kristol on the op-ed page,” Katha Pollitt (Nation, 3/18/09) contrasts the fact that “Douthat is best known for his conservative Catholicism (abortion is murder, frozen embryos are children, contraception kills romance),” with such Times-approving quotes as “‘Smart move,’ says Matt Yglesias. Ezra Klein and George Packer agree he’s ‘brilliant.’ At TheNation.com, Chris Hayes calls it a ‘fantastic choice,’ and Eyal Press looks forward to ‘thoughtful commentary.’” Examples of such “thoughtful commentary” include Douthat “on those […]