Apr
01
2013

Year of the Woman, Take Two

Media define 'progress' as 1 Senate seat in 5

If you relied on major media outlets for coverage of last November’s elections, you could be forgiven for thinking women were poised to rule the country in 2013. “From Congress to Halls of State... Women Rule,” the New York Times (1/1/13) trumpeted. “Big Gains for Women in 2012,” shouted CNN (11/7/12). “113th Congress Welcomes Benches Full of Women,” PBS (11/16/12) declared. Salon (11/6/12) was confidently matter-of-fact—“Another Year of the Woman”—as was Mother Jones (11/6/12): “2012: The Year of the Woman Senator.” MSNBC (“Is 2012 the Year of the Woman?,” 3/15/12) and the Washington Post (“With Senate Wins for Elizabeth Warren […]

Apr
01
2013

Joe Biden, Aesthetic Populist

A track record of screwing the little guy

Biden breaking from Secret Service to shake NBC's Al Roker's hand during the 2013 inaugural parade.--Photo Credit: NBC

Joe Biden’s popularity stems from his perception of “folksiness.” In reality, though, Biden’s record is anything but working class–friendly.

Jan
01
2013

The Hall of Fame of Bad Ideas

Why acting like you lost the election is the ‘serious’ thing to do

Chart

As usual when Democrats win elections, plenty of corporate media pundits advised them to act as though they lost.

Jan
01
2013

Talking About--but Not With--Latino Voters

Electoral power not matched by media presence

Maria Teresa Kumar, a rare out-of-house Latina appearance on TV.
Source: MSNBC's News Nation

The Latino vote has been widely credited in the mainstream news media with playing a major role in securing Barack Obama’s re-election. According to the polling organization Latino Decisions, the president won 75 percent of the Latino vote, compared with 23 percent for Romney, a 3-to-1 margin (Foreign Affairs, 11/15/12). But while the stereotypical sleeping giant woke up, that does not mean that the mainstream media, especially television news shows, wanted to talk with the Latino electorate. They just wanted to talk about them. Extra! looked at hundreds of transcripts of post-election coverage and found that the majority of both […]

Jan
01
2013

Dark Money Dominates Election

Campaign--and media coverage--still tainted by Citizens United decision

CBS's president Les Moonves: What's bad for America is "very good for CBS." (Photo cred.: LATimes.com)

“Super PACs may be bad for America, but they’re very good for CBS.” CBS president Les Moonves’ candid comment at an entertainment law conference (Bloomberg, 3/10/12) was one of the few honest things said by someone so deeply involved in the post–Citizens United political ad frenzy. This past election season was dominated by a record amount of ads, including many that were alarmingly misleading, and which raked in record profits for the media corporations who covered the election. Moonves was celebrating what, according to Bloomberg (3/10/12), was a projected boost in profits “by $180 million this year from political advertising,” […]

Dec
01
2012

Time Gives Up on Factchecking

Corporate media can't find a way to tell the truth

"Blue Truth, Red Truth": Time's October 15, 2012, cover story

Reporters appear to be wedded to a set of “rules” that say they are not allowed to convey reality to their readers and viewers.

Dec
01
2012

The Moderators’ Agenda

Debate questions reveal limited scope

CBS Presidential Debate 10/22/12

The establishment media figures who moderated the 2012 major-party candidate debates confined the discussion to a remarkably narrow range of topics, a FAIR analysis of debate questions finds. A wide variety of topics were never brought up in questions during the six total hours of debate. Among economic subjects, no questions were asked about poverty, income inequality, the housing crisis, labor unions, agriculture or the Federal Reserve. Social issues were similarly truncated, with no questions raised about race or racism, gay rights (including marriage equality), civil liberties, criminal justice or drug legalization. Despite the fact that four Supreme Court justices […]

Nov
09
2012

Mark Weisbrot on election lessons, Wen Stephenson on climate change

Does fiscal panic make any sense? Mark Weisbrot of the Center for Economic and Policy Research will tell us what he saw as the lessons from the election. Also this week: The media’s approach on climate change is so inadequate as to be life-threatening.