After FAIR's recent action alert (10/27/11) concerning the PBS NewsHour's reports minimizing--and even celebrating--economic inequality, NewsHour correspondent Paul Solman posted a long response on the PBS website (10/31/11) that attempted to answer the criticism. Solman began by expressing his appreciation for the "avalanche" of feedback, "hostile though most of it has been." He admits that guest Richard Epstein (10/26/11)--who made the case in favor of inequality--was incorrect to attribute this quote to Abraham Lincoln: "You do not make the poor rich by making the rich poor." But then Solman writes that the sentiment behind it is beyond dispute: But when […]
'Who would disagree' with fake Lincoln quote?
PBS newscast presents the upside of inequality
With protesters around the country speaking out against income inequality, public television's flagship newscast made time on October 26 for the pro-inequality side to be heard, featuring a guest who invoked a phony Abraham Lincoln quote to make his case.
Download MP3 This week on CounterSpin: Census Bureau data showing one in six Americans live in poverty was received soberly by the press corps, but should it have surprised them? And what about next week, when the government doesn't release a report and people are still poor? We'll talk with journalist Neil deMause about media’s treatment of poverty and the poor. Also on the show: Mainstream reporting on the Palestinian bid for UN recognition regularly employs loaded language in portraying the initiative as and underhanded gambit which is threatening to the U.S. and Israel. But exactly how does the Palestinian […]
Little interest in study of massive race/gender disparities
The Insight Center for Community Economic Development (3/8/10) released a stunning report about the wealth gap for women of color: Single black women have a median wealth of $100 and Hispanic women of $120—dramatically lower than white men ($43,800), white women ($41,500) or black men ($7,900). Insight Center for Community Economic Development, March 2010 The median wealth for single white women in their prime working years, age 36-49, is 61 percent of the wealth of their male counterparts, who own $70,030. That’s terrible, but the corresponding ratio between women and men of color is nearly off the charts, at just […]
In a response to a FAIR action alert (3/11/10), New York Times public editor Clark Hoyt (3/21/10) acknowledged that the paper got key facts wrong in reporting on the undercover videos attacking the community organizing group ACORN. The main issue was the fact that James O'Keefe, the activist who produced the videos, did not actually dress up like a "pimp" when he visited the offices. This was a major theme in stories that appeared in the Times and elsewhere: As FAIR pointed out, O'Keefe's supposed get-up was one of "the key contentions of the ACORN smear--that the group is so […]
Why can't paper admit its mistakes?
Ignoring calls from numerous critics, the New York Times refuses to own up to mistakes in the paper's coverage of the now-famous right-wing videotapes attacking the community organizing group ACORN. Instead, the paper's public editor, Clark Hoyt, is relying on an absurd semantic justification in order to claim the paper does not need to print any corrections. As conventionally reported in the Times and elsewhere, right-wing activists James O'Keefe and Hannah Giles dressed up as a pimp and a prostitute and visited several local ACORN offices, where office workers gave the duo advice on setting up a brothel, concealing a […]
Download MP3 This week on CounterSpin: Walkouts and protests at the Copenhagen summit have highlighted the political friction in responding to climate change. But is the press corps that brings us headlines like the New York Times' "Poor and Emerging States Stall Climate Negotiations" the right place to look for an understanding of concerns about the inequality of climate change's human impacts? We'll get a different perspective from writer Michelle Chen, who’s been following the story. Also on the show: An independent report on ACORN, commissioned by the group and authored by the former attorney general of Massachusetts, has some […]
Download MP3 This week on CounterSpin: This week on CounterSpin, did the White House really disclose the existence of Iran’s new Uranium enrichment plant, and does the plant, as many news stories seem to indicate, really violate the law? And what evidence is there that the new plant may have anything to do with a nuclear weapons program, as certain prominent U.S. media figures have claimed, but which U.S. intelligence agencies say does not exist? We’ll talk to historian and free lance journalists Gareth Porter about the latest wave of allegations against Iran. Also this week: The community activist group […]