News Network, My Ass


In an infuriatingly all-too rare moment, the Obama Administration actually let someone say something that desperately needed to be said and, so far at least, hasn’t retracted it and/or fired the poor child for impudently pointing out the Emperor’s nudity.  It was like a bracing gust of fresh air through a humid, stinky room befouled by the stench of Bushian coverups, militarism, and crony capitalism, when all of a sudden Anita Dunn just pointed out what any fool has known forever:  that, perhaps, Fox News wasn’t exactly to be taken seriously as a journalistic enterprise.  (During the commercial break, she also reportedly said that grass is green and water is wet, but CHNN was unable to independently confirm this at press time.)  Well, then.  It took them nine months of uncontested Teabagging and Hitler/Mao comparisons, but my heart leapt at this shockingly straightforward utterance; it was so heartening that I fleetingly wished I hadn’t given up on Hope and Change so long ago.  Better yet, the outraged and self-pitying responses that immediately poured out of Fox were so juvenile, insulting, and ridiculous that they luridly reinforced Dunn’s point.

Alas, then the “liberal media” weighed in, and since they’re the only people on earth who believe in fairies and Santa Claus, they scoldingly stomped their tiny feet and solemnly insisted that because an easily offended 1% of Americans watch Fox News, or something, Obama was “whining” and this would “backfire.”  Really?  Says who?  Well, no less than John Nichols at The Nation sneered that the horrifying act of an administration official somewhat euphemistically referring to Fox as an “arm of the Republican Party” amounted to the President becoming the “Whiner in Chief,” while TV Newser reached into its ass and pulled out a poll that said 84% of somebody, anyway, thought such statements would “backfire.”  The Columbia Journalism Review sniffed that the “huge swath of Americans,”  (that is, the three million elderly and/or obese teagbagging Fox watchers who think Obama is a Commie Kenyan) would be so deeply saddened that the President they had such high hopes for had succumbed to the “pettiness of partisanship” that they’d have to go ahead and buy another gun.  (That’s not exactly what the genius future Wal-Mart greeter Megan Garber wrote, but it might as well have been….)  US News and World Report accidentally let slip Bill O’Reilly’s pet name for anyone more liberal than Joe Lieberman, calling those who would applaud Dunn’s statement “far-left” in their own equally self-discrediting denunciation.  USA Today and even New York Magazine all chimed in, too using all the same words and memes.  No wonder nobody reads these people; anyone who believes such utter hogwash clearly can’t read in the first place, and spends their disposable income on other things.

But that is, unfortunately, the problem that faces any Democratic Administration in the age of Fox, as Jamison Foser at Media Matters pointed out in an excellent post last week:  as long as the rest of the media, for whatever reason, clings to the addled notion that Fox News is not just legitimate, but worse, something superior to which they must daily prostrate themselves, democracy is in a world of hurt.  By buying one network, Murdoch got the rest of them for free.

UPDATE: Minutes after I wrote this post, The WaPoo’s Dan Balz  typed a sternly worded warning to the Democrats, as usual divining the feelings, without evidence, of those ethereal “independents.”  (In Village-ese, that means, “teabaggers”). Balz has an unsubstantiated hunch they’re not happy, but was to busy to ask any about this.  He adds, in the most dismissive terms, that all the hippies, darkies, and freeloaders that voted for this commie Kenyan usurper will surely stay home to do bong rips and make sand candles in Nov. 2010, leaving the 20% of America that still loves George Bush to handily return power to the deserving.  (No phone lines or googles were evidently harmed in Balz’s experiment…)  Fred Hiatt, whose newspaper has built its reputation on boosting imminent Republican comebacks, told him to type something, and type he did.)  Sigh.

UPDATE II: The New York Times’ David Carr, unsurprisingly, says the same thing, and goes all the way back to U.S. Grant to “prove” his bullshit point.  Again, Carr, like the rest of his idiotic brethren, pretends not to notice that the Murdochian empire, or its blatant hostility to Obama, is anything new, and in Orwellian yet typically clueless terms, blames the Obama administration for lowering itself to Fox’s level, demonstrating the NYT’s undeserved elitism even as it misses the whole point.  Fit to print, indeed.  It’s all a Hag can do to keep up with this crap, as another MSM loser phones it in.


  1. nailhead tom says:

    Of course, in Anita Dunn’s Maoist utopia no news organization could criticize BHO and survive. That’s the philosophy she admires. The Chairman brooked no media opposition and his descendents aren’t too big on it, either, apparently including the Hag. The populace isn’t intelligent enough to decide which part of the presentation is news and which is opinion, so they’ll determine the content. And it isn’t enough that an overwhelming proportion of the media devotes its energy to stroking BHO like a maiden aunt pets her cat. It has to be unanimous.

    • dirigo says:

      One thing about you, Nail in the Head, you are a hoot. Absurdity basted with a feverish hyperbole doesn’t even begin to describe it.

      Do you get paid somewhere to write this tripe?

    • rmp says:

      Yes, the M$M is doing its thing of kissing up to power no matter who is in charge. After covering Dubya and The Dick for eight years, someone as intelligent and possessing supreme communication skills as Barack does, would also brighten any M$M’s day, month and year.

      The fact that Obama is a writer at heart doesn’t hurt either.

      Barack Obama’s Work in Progress: Over the past few years, we’ve gotten to know our president as a lot of different things: campaigner, lawyer, father, basketballer. But what if Obama’s first and truest calling—his desire to write—explains more about him than anything else? Robert Draper recounts the untold story of the first man since Teddy Roosevelt to serve as author in chief.

    • cocktailhag says:

      Oh, for Pete’s sake, Nailhead. In the unlikely event that you’re aware, Roger Ailes. whose dubious claim to fame was elevating Richard Nixon to the Presidency with his “Southern Strategy,” wasn’t hired by Rupert Murdoch to be fair and balanced. Quite the opposite. The “maiden aunts” (a depressingly familiar sexist construction for which you’re already famous) are stroking the same cats Fox is, so I fail to see your point. Unanimity was only enforced back in the Bush days, when Fox was its chief enforcer…. admittedly they’re less like Pravda now, but no more believable. Please go back and read the post to find evidence of Obama worship in the media, if you can.

    • dirigo says:

      Nail in the Head, no doubt Fox News is still covering, earnestly as it were, the Colorado father who (supposedly) sent “balloon boy” aloft as, perhaps, a symbol and expression of American courage and pluck.

      There’s an assignment for you. Stick with it!

      The CHNN assignment desk will be in touch if there’s something about this story that fits our format.

  2. rmp says:

    Here’s an excerpt from a Newsweek article by Jacob Weisberg, a Chicago native, with a great headline that is in total agreement with you Hag:

    “That Rupert Murdoch may tilt the news rightward more for commercial than ideological reasons is beside the point. What matters is the way that Fox’s model has invaded the bloodstream of the American media. By showing that ideologically distorted news can drive ratings, Ailes has provoked his rivals at CNN and MSNBC to develop a variety of populist and ideological takes on the news. In this way, Fox hasn’t just corrupted its own coverage. Its example has made all of cable news unpleasant and unreliable. “

    The O’Garbage Factor: Fox News isn’t just bad. It’s un-American.

    A little on Weisberg:

    Jacob Weisberg is the Chairman and Editor-in-Chief of The Slate Group, which publishes Slate, The Root, The Big Money and Foreign Policy. He was editor of Slate from 2003 until 2008. Before that, he was Slate’s Chief Political Correspondent. Before that, he wrote about politics for Vanity Fair, The New York Times Magazine, New York, and The New Republic. A Chicago native, he is the author of several books including The Bush Tragedy, which was a New York Times bestseller in 2008.

  3. sysprog says:

    Organizations such as Fox News and the Scientologists “brook no media opposition” as a certain kohlkopf (cabbage head) would say. They relentlessly savage anybody who even slightly criticizes them, and they are successful in scaring away most reporters.

    David Carr Wrote:
    The Media Equation
    When Fox News Is the Story
    July 7, 2008

    Like most working journalists, whenever I type seven letters — Fox News — a series of alarms begins to whoop in my head: Danger. Warning. Much mayhem ahead.

    Once the public relations apparatus at Fox News is engaged, there will be the calls to my editors, keening (and sometimes threatening) e-mail messages [...]

    [...] Media reporting about other media’s approach to producing media is pretty confusing business to begin with. Feelings, which are always raw for people who make their mistakes in public, will be bruised. But that does not fully explain the scorched earth between Fox News and those who cover it.

    Fox News found a huge runway and enormous success by setting aside the conventions of bloodless objectivity, but along the way, it altered the rules of engagement between reporters and the media organizations they cover. Under its chief executive, Roger Ailes, Fox News and its public relations apparatus have waged a permanent campaign on behalf of the channel that borrows its methodology from his days as a senior political adviser to Richard M. Nixon, Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush.

    At Fox News, media relations is a kind of rolling opposition research operation intended to keep reporters in line by feeding and sometimes maiming them. Shooting the occasional messenger is baked right into the process.

    As crude as that sounds, it works. By blacklisting reporters it does not like, planting stories with friendlies at every turn, Fox News has been living a life beyond consequence for years. [...]

    [...] Mr. Ailes and Brian Lewis, his longtime head of public relations, act as if every organization that covers them is a potential threat [...]

    [...] A little more than a week ago, Jacques Steinberg, a reporter at The New York Times who covers television, wrote a straight-up-the-middle ratings story about cable news. His article acknowledged that while CNN was using a dynamic election to push Fox News from behind, Fox was still No. 1. [...]

    [...] After the article ran, Brian Kilmeade and Steve Doocy of “Fox and Friends,” the reliable water carriers on the morning show on the cable network, did a segment suggesting that Mr. Steinberg’s editor was a disgruntled former employee — Steven V. Reddicliffe once edited TV Guide, which was until recently owned by the News Corporation — and that Mr. Steinberg was his trained attack dog. (The audience was undoubtedly wondering what the heck they were talking about.)

    The accompanying photographs were heavily altered, although the audience was probably none the wiser. Mr. Reddicliffe looked like the wicked witch after a hard night of drinking, but it was the photo of Mr. Steinberg that stopped traffic when it appeared on the Web at Media Matters side by side with his actual photo. In a technique familiar to students of vintage German propaganda, his ears were pulled out, his teeth splayed apart, his forehead lowered and his nose was widened and enlarged in a way that made him look more like Fagin than the guy I work with. (Mr. Steinberg told me that as a working reporter who covers Fox News, he was not in a position to comment. A spokeswoman said the executive in charge of “Fox and Friends” is on vacation and not available for comment but added that altering photos for humorous effect is a common practice on cable news stations.)

    It’s a particularly vivid example of how the Fox response team works, but hardly the only one. [...]

    - – David Carr, 7/7/2008

    This gives you some background on why David Carr in tomorrow’s (10/18/2009) NYTimes writes that the White House “seems to have brought a knife to a gunfight.”

    • dirigo says:

      Sarah Palin brooks no criticism as well.


    • cocktailhag says:

      That’s something else, sysprog…. Smacks of journalistic malpractice on Carr’s part, too, since he fully realizes from experience what is happening but goes ahead and criticizes the Obama administration for engaging. All the news that’s fit to print? I think not.

  4. nailhead tom says:

    The utopians move closer to national hegemony with Democrats in the majority in the House and the Senate and a utopian on the throne but it’s just not enough. EVERYONE, especially the fringes of the media, must reinforce the utopian message. It matters not that no one is required to watch Fox News or listen to “right wing” talk radio, the simple access to a different opinion or interpretation of events is a threat to the utopian program. The National Enquirer isn’t perceived as a threat and the Weekly World News doesn’t seem to offend you, why not? They’re available at every supermarket checkout line. Wouldn’t the public fear of alien invasion be a negative in the national discourse? And the rabid slaverings of Olberman and Maddow don’t seem to generate the same level of disgust amongst the utopian illiterati. We know that Lenin is dead, but his spirit lives on.

    • cocktailhag says:

      It’s just a fact that Fox News viewers are less informed, even misinformed, because they watch Fox, a network that worshipped Bush even has he drove the country off a cliff. I have no problem with Fox, only with it calling what it does “news,” and other media outlets treating it with deference it doesn’t deserve.

      • nailhead tom says:

        “It’s just a fact that Fox News viewers are less informed, even misinformed, because they watch Fox. . .”

        Interesting statement. That implies that “Fox News viewers” have somehow lost the remote in the couch cushions and can’t change the channel to any other news source, that they don’t take in their local network stations, don’t read newspapers or magazines and maybe don’t discuss current events with others. After all, they’re “Fox News viewers” and that means they get their information from one source only. That’s a “fact”?

        As for the MSM following the Fox lead:

        As for Dunn’s complaint about Fox News’ coverage of the Obama campaign, a study by the Pew Research Center showed that 40 percent of Fox News stories on Obama in the last six weeks of the campaign were negative. Similarly, 40 percent of Fox News’ stories on Obama’s Republican opponent, Sen. John McCain, were negative.

        On CNN, by contrast, there was a 22-point disparity in the percentage of negative stories on Obama (39 percent) and McCain (61 percent). The disparity was even greater at MSNBC, according to Pew, where just 14 percent of Obama stories were negative, compared to a whopping 73 percent of McCain stories — a spread of 59 points.

        • cocktailhag says:

          Yes, and large majorities of Fox viewers belive that Saddam was involved in 9/11, that we found WMD in Iraq, and that George Bush was a good president. Fox viewers only watch Fox because they are told, every five minutes, that what it offers is “real journalism,” unlike all the others. All the right wing media do this, as I’m sure you’re aware, since you faithfully repeat what you’re told by them all day long.
          Further, any network that didn’t cover McCain negatively wasn’t doing its job. He was a doddering, corrupt old man with a blithering ipiot for a running mate, no programs, and the most inept and intelligence-insulting campaign ever mounted.
          Fox, reflexively boosting whatever Republican who happened to be running, naturally gave him kid-glove treatment. Quelle surprise.

  5. nailhead tom says:

    From Power Line:

    James Taranto profiles our friend Andrew Breitbart and lets Andrew speak for himself in “Taking on the ‘Democrat-media complex.’” Among other things, Andrew is the founder Breitbart News as well as the sites Big Hollywood and, most recently, Big Government.

    Andrew is a genius a couple times over, with an instinctive sense of how to turn the power of the left back on itself. Discussing the strategy he employed to roll out the James O’Keefe/Hannah Giles videos of ACORN at work, Taranto quotes Andrew: “This plan wasn’t just a means to defend against the media’s desire to attack the messenger. It was also a means to attack the media and to expose them . . . for the partisan hacks that they are.”

    Taranto enters qualifications on Andrew’s “harsh” judgment, but Breitbart’s understanding of the modus operandi of the left in its media extension is one of the keys to his success. Andrew expands on his purpose in rolling out the ACORN story: “If they think that Acorn or the Democratic Party or the NEA or the Office of Public Engagement is the primary target, they couldn’t be more wrong. It is the Democrat-media complex. It is the mainstream media.”

    • cocktailhag says:

      Yeah, that ACORN “expose” was really something. Come up with a story, use false and deceptive means to “prove” it, and then go to a right-wing hack like Breitbart to disseminate it (with the help of Fox and Drudge, natch). Then bully the rest of the media for “missing” a trumped-up story. That’s journalism, all right.

  6. dirigo says:

    Very little of this controversy will be settled. It’s too far gone.

  7. dirigo says:

    Over to you, Nail in the Head. No doubt you have another heated rebuttal for us …

    • cocktailhag says:

      Thank God people are finally saying that, and not wimping out, for a change. The whole “Real Journalism, Fair and Balanced,” has so far been too successful for Fox. It inoculates them against lying, because when they contradict other news outlets, or even themselves, it’s because all the other media can’t be trusted. What sickens me the most is that its personalities always pose as beleaguered victims, when they always align themselves with the powerful against the little guy. (Oh, unless said little guy is a bigot, then he gets a little stroke….)

    • nailhead tom says:

      Per the TPM: “Axelrod responded by saying that “Mr. Murdoch has a talent for making money, and I understand that their programming is geared toward making money.”

      And the other networks are charities? Last I heard, every business was required to make money or disappear, unless they were banks, big insurance companies, or car manufacturers. Of course, the BHO presidential campaign spurned all donations from whatever source and Axelrod himself donated his time and talents, since his PR firm still owes him a couple million and has government contracts to get that money for him. So, Fox News is all about making money and CNN and MSNBC and the rest do it for free.

      • dirigo says:

        No, we’re ALL in it for the money.

        Stop with the worn-out capitalism lessons. It’s so tiresome.

        Everyone knows we have to make a buck. We all know what the deal is. We’re all little Henry Fords, or Warren Buffetts, or Babbitts or Edisons.

        The argument here is about content resting on a certain kind of propaganda within an unusually influential media empire (one poised, it would seem, to help the Chinese think more clearly as well).

        The dishonesty, on the part of Fox News, is in the pretension (or dissembling) that it is simply a news organization.

        And … AND (anticipating your next gum flap) … yes, every news organization has an agenda, a slant.

        The question under discussion here has to to with the agenda of Fox “News” and it’s origins in the reactionary politics of this country over the last twenty or more years.

        Some people are finally calling them out.

        Tell us something NEW will ya?

        • nailhead tom says:

          “The question under discussion here has to to with the agenda of Fox “News” and it’s origins in the reactionary politics of this country over the last twenty or more years.”

          So what’s the agenda? And the reactionary politics, what’s that? I’ve never watched Fox News so the incendiary response by the utopians is a mystery to me. The point is, if you don’t like it, don’t watch it. If you’re opposed to their “agenda”, don’t go along with it. I don’t hear Fox complaining about all the face time admin officials get on network shows, run, for the most part, by Democrat apparatchiks like Stephanopolous. But that’s a major feature of the utopian persona, the inevitable victim whine and the painting of the opposition not as wrong but as evil and satanic, if atheists even believe in satan. Well, maybe they do, since Dick Cheney has been satan personified for some time.

          • dirigo says:

            I’m not a utopian, nor am I an athiest (I don’t yak religion much either).

            And I don’t watch Fox News.

  8. nailhead tom says:

    “Stop with the worn-out capitalism lessons. It’s so tiresome.”

    Tell it to Axelrod. He’s the one who brought it up.

  9. nailhead tom says:

    From the Beaufort Observer, re: Limbaugh and the NFL:

    “So who won and who lost this power game?

    The answer is that the American people lost. The Elite Media lost. The people see once again that the Elite Media is not honest. We hate to sound like a broken record, but its true and we and others will have to keep pointing this out until these hypocrites stop trying to make it look like they are not just as biased as they accuse others of being.

    Whether it is Dan Rather abusing his prestige with a false story about George Bush’s National Guard record or MSNBC repeating quotes attributed to Limbaugh that they did not check out the source or any of the other almost daily examples of media hypocrites, the sad fact is that people get hurt in this game. People who do not deserve to be hurt.

    But it will continue as long as the Elite Media believes they can or do control what people think. It will continue until the day comes when they realize that people have good sense and they have the ability to get their information from many sources and are not dependent on the Elites.”

    • cocktailhag says:

      Wow. Several lies in a news story criticizing others for lying. You must have searched high and low for that one.
      1) The National Guard story was TRUE. Bush did receive preferential treatment getting into the guard, and he DID fail to complete his obligation. Whether the document was a forgery changes that not a whit. When draft dodgers start wars, (and then play pilot dress-up) that’s news.
      2) There are dozens of racist things Limbaugh has said, all on tape, which were equally disqualifying. This pity party for a lying drug addict worth hundreds of millions of dollars is truly beyond me.
      Since you’re the expert on business, you should know that no responsible business wants to be associated with unnecessary controversy. (See Bryant, Anita)
      I guess you don’t need to watch Fox, if you’ve got a paper like that to read.

      • dirigo says:

        One other point about W and his service.

        Aside from all that is true, additionally, he was reported to be in the Boston area, making preparations to enter his Harvard MBA program sometime before his discharge, possibly without permission from his superior officer.

        He tried to get a transfer up there before his time in the guard was up, to no avail, but he may have gone anyway at some point.

        This is sourced to the Boston Globe, which did major reporting on Bush and the guard well before Dan Rather’s stuff.

        • dirigo says:

          Correction: Bush went to Boston, roughly during his last year as the flyboy lieutenant, promising to sign on with a guard or reserve unit while scoping Harvard for his MBA program. But he didn’t do any “duty” up there.

          See Boston Globe link below.

      • nailhead tom says:

        Nobody has to agree with Limbaugh, but when you broadcast quotes that he didn’t actually say, well, that’s called slander. If he’s said so many racist things, why didn’t they just use some of them, huh? After all, just about everything he’s said in the last twenty years has been recorded. But, unfortunately, nothing really filled the bill, so Rachel, etal, consummate journalists, dedicated to “the news” and the truth, must maliciously shriek a proven fiction. Real journalistic pros. And the same goes for Rather. If there’s all this evidence that the only US president ever with an MBA, who was also qualified to fly a fighter jet, did something illegal or even immoral, why did CBS have to rely on phony evidence to make its case? And, by the way, let’s hear more about Rather’s illustrious Marine career.

        • cocktailhag says:

          It was ONE QUOTE, among dozens. “Take that bone out of your nose and call me back,” the Donovan McNabb flap that got him FIRED from ESPN. Why you latch onto lies when the truth falls on your head is really sad, but makes you typical of your ilk. Lot of good W’s MBA did him with that budget, huh? I bet Ken Lay had an MBA, too. Further, W also refused a drug test, which disqualified him for flying, although you were, as usual, plugging your ears and singing “Frere Jacques” when that came out, too. Honestly, defending Bush is something even his father doesn’t bother to do anymore; you should try something less, well, asinine.
          We’ll never know, due to the righties that run CBS, where that document came from, since they sealed all the records, but it certainly benefitted an administration already well known for forgery and “ratfucking” in the past. Like all journalists, Rather has his flaws, and I’m not necessarily defending him. Unlike you, I’m able to discern both good and bad in people. You should try it sometime.

          • nailhead tom says:

            “It was ONE QUOTE, among dozens”

            I guess you still don’t get it. It wasn’t a quote, because HE DIDN’T SAY IT. Somebody made it up. And it was repeated by the so-called professionals of the media. If he said dozens of other insensitive things, why didn’t they just use them? Instead of exposing themselves to a zillion dollar slander award? What lie am I “latching onto”? If there was a recording of Limbaugh actually saying that, it would be all over you tube. But it ain’t.

            “Unlike you, I’m able to discern both good and bad in people. You should try it sometime.”

            I guess you’re talking about GWB, Karl Rove, and Dick Cheney, right?

          • cocktailhag says:

            It doesn’t fucking matter, Nailhead…. He has said so many offensive things that his plutocrat pals dumped him. End of story. Defending that disgusting fatass makes you look like an even bigger idiot than you are.
            Also, because of Limbaugh’s ridiculously public status, which generates his millions, he doesn’t have an ice cube’s chance in hell of winning a “slander” suit. He made his own bed, and it mystifies me why you are so eager to join him in it.
            And, yes, I’ll freely admit that Bush, Cheney, and Rove have absolutely no redeeming qualities. Would you argue? Pray tell, what are they? I’m open to any information you and your sources at PowerLine or wherever can provide.

        • dirigo says:

          Limbaugh is in the same big frying pan as any other public figure.

          It’s pointless talking about how poor Rush might have been slandered.

          He’s fair game, and as a result the slander standard for someone like him is too high to waste time on.

          Got anything else?

    • cocktailhag says:

      Ah, more righty projection. Great catch, Dirigo. Remember the PC of the Bush era? Never criticize the C in C in a (convenient) Time of War, etc.

      • dirigo says:

        I’m so sick of all this that I regard my specific tweaks with Nail In The Head as simply batting his ping pong balls back at him.

        It’s all absurd to me now. Just ridiculous stuff every damn day.

        You, of course, must continue to do the heavy lifting here because this is your place.

        I’ll hoist a bale of bullshit here and there though.

        • cocktailhag says:

          Many hands make light work….

          • There’s another way to look at it:

            I have seen the best minds of my generation…

            One moron, 47 comments, most of them about him. From a military point of view, whenever one sniper can tie down an entire enemy battalion, you’ve done a good day’s work, especially when you aren’t short of snipers.

            I’d advise a change of tactics.

  10. cocktailhag says:

    Perhaps you’re right, WT. You’re not the first to say so, either.

  11. nailhead tom says:

    From, via James Taranto:

    A White House attempt to delegitimize Fox News–which in past times would have drawn howls of censorship from the press corps–has instead been greeted by a collective shrug.

    That’s true even though the motivations of the White House are clear: Fire up a liberal base disillusioned with Obama by attacking the hated Fox. Try to keep a critical news outlet off-balance. Raise doubts about future Fox stories.

    But most of all, get other journalists to think twice before following the network’s stories in their own coverage. . . .

    To some media observers, it’s almost the definition of a “chilling effect”– a governmental attempt to steer reporters away from negative coverage–but the White House press corps has barely uttered a word of complaint. . . .

    The direct attacks, if leveled at another news outlet or by another White House might have aroused a torrent of criticism, but the flow of outrage from the Washington journalistic set has been more like a trickle. . . .

    The Obama White House appears to have concluded that the media is now so splintered that an attack on one is no longer an attack on all.

    This column is not of the opinion that the White House’s verbal attacks on Fox News amount to an assault on free expression. Even Anita Dunn’s boasts about controlling press coverage aren’t enough to raise a real free-expression issue.

    But they say something terribly damning about the media as an institution. The Obama administration, much less the campaign, does not have the legal means to “control” journalists. If it has succeeded in doing so, it is only because journalists are willing to submit to such control. And what good is freedom of the press if you aren’t going to exercise it?

    • Steven Rockford says:


      Your Point?

    • cocktailhag says:

      Nail Head, you (and Taranto) are so full of shit it sticks out. You recently said you don’t watch Fox anyway, so how would you even know? Or were you lying again? Never mind. Birds gotta fly, fish gotta swim, and all.

  12. nailheadtom says:


    Maoist in the White House

    Mises Daily by George Reisman | Posted on Monday, October 19, 2009

    Anita Dunn, is described by the online encyclopedia Wikipedia as “one of the major decision makers of the Obama campaign” and as one of Obama’s “four top advisers (along with David Axelrod, David Plouffe, and Robert Gibbs).” She currently holds the position of “White House Communications Director.” She is married to the President’s personal lawyer, Robert Bauer. In 2008, Newsweek named Dunn and Bauer the new “power couple” in Washington, D.C.

    This last June, at a high-school commencement exercise, Dunn had this to say:

    the third lesson and tip actually comes from two of my favorite political philosophers Mao Tse-tung and Mother Teresa, not often coupled with each other, but the two people that I turn to most to basically deliver a simple point which is you’re going to make choices, you’re going to challenge, you’re going to say why not…. In 1947, when Mao Tse-tung was being challenged within his own party on his plan to basically take China over, Chiang Kai-Shek and the nationalist Chinese held the cities, they had the army, they had the air force, they had everything on their side and people said, “How can you win, how can you do this, how can you do this, how can you do this against all of the odds against you?” And Mao Tze Tung said, “You fight your war and I’ll fight mine.” [Dunn's remarks appear in this online video.]

    Back in late 2002, on the occasion of retiring Senator’s Strom Thurmond’s 100th birthday, Trent Lott, then the Majority Leader of the US Senate, said,

    I want to say this about my state: When Strom Thurmond ran for president, we voted for him. We’re proud of it. And if the rest of the country had followed our lead, we wouldn’t have had all these problems over all these years, either.

    Because Thurmond had campaigned in 1948 on a platform advocating racial segregation and Lott’s statement was—correctly—taken as an implicit endorsement of segregation, the result of his statement was an outcry from the media, various public figures, and other Senators, of such dimensions that he was soon forced to resign as Senate Majority Leader.

    This was despite his protestation and apology that

    A poor choice of words conveyed to some the impression that I embraced the discarded policies of the past. Nothing could be further from the truth, and I apologize to anyone who was offended by my statement.

    Thurmond had subsequently abandoned his segregationist position and, consistent with this, Lott said, “My comments were not an endorsement of his positions of over 50 years ago, but of the man and his life.”

    Nevertheless, perhaps there simply was no valid explanation or justification for Lott’s comment, and his resignation, therefore, was appropriate. But at least Lott was greatly embarrassed by what he had said and did offer a public apology of some kind.

    My question is, Where is the outcry against Anita Dunn? Her remarks were not limited to a casual comment that had vicious implications. Rather they constituted a prolonged, blatantly explicit, and far more fundamental endorsement of an incalculably worse person and program than did those of Trent Lott. She has dared to say that one of her “favorite political philosophers” is one of the greatest mass murderers in the history of the world, a man whose takeover of China was responsible for as many as 70 million deaths during his reign. She has dared to present the words of this monster as a source of inspiration to youth!

    Perhaps she would like to rephrase her remarks. Perhaps she would like to substitute Adolf Hitler for Mao Tse-tung. Perhaps she would like to say something like this:

    $95 $80

    “In the days when the Führer was being challenged even within his own party on his plan to exterminate the Jews of Europe, the Jews and their allies controlled many major businesses, they controlled many major banks, they owned many major newspapers and magazines. They were protected by the rule of law, by trial by jury, and by laws against robbery, kidnapping, and murder. They had everything on their side and people said to Hitler, ‘How can you win, how can you do this, how can you do this against all of the odds against you?’ And Hitler said, ‘You fight your war and do your destruction and I’ll fight mine and do my destruction.’”

    If the United States had an honest press and media, one committed to the principle of individual rights, their outrage would drive Anita Dunn out of Washington, D.C., just by hurling her words back at her. They would make her such a “hot potato” that no one would dare to defend her in her infam