How (Too Many) Professional Political Reporters and Pundits Earn Their Pay

Same professional reporter

Same professional news website


Three days later….


( How Patricia Murphy and her editors at the Daily Beast manage to survive a single day when they so obviously lack any critical thinking skills is beyond me).


Move Over Britney, Here Comes Sarah

It wasn’t too long ago, that Britney Spears was covered by the media on a daily basis.  We knew when Britney Spears went shopping and where she shopped.  There were constant stories about her marriage and her babies.  Nothing was secret.  We heard it all, on a regular basis.  Occasionally, the media would update us on the affairs of a young woman named Paris Hilton.

Sarah Palin

Sarah Palin

Then we had the “Runaway Bride,” the “Diaper Woman” and of course, Anna Nicole Smith.  All of these women kept our media busy.   In the meantime, George W. Bush and Dick Cheney were trashing our Constitution, bankrupting our nation, and sending Americans off to die in a war based on lies, but the media never took their eyes off of these women.

Now it’s time for Britney and Paris to step aside.  There is a new woman in town and she will do and say anything to get the attention of the media.  Why just the other day, she single handedly re-directed the media’s attention away from its constant coverage of Michael Jackson and right to her.  Since John McCain yanked Sarah Palin out of Alaska and into the view of the lower 48, a week hasn’t gone by without someone from the media placing the spotlight on Sarah.  Last Friday, Sarah Palin announced that she is aborting her position as Governor of Alaska and moving onto a “higher calling.”   She claimed that she was resigning for the good of Alaska.  If this were true, she would quietly leave the scene.  Instead, Sarah Palin has been on the news every day.  On Friday, she announces the abortion of  her responsibilities to the citizens of Alaska; Saturday, she threatens to sue anyone that spreads rumors about her; Sunday, she again announces to her supporters that they should stay tuned; on Monday, she appeared in front of the cameras wearing fishing waders; and today, another stay tuned day.

Oh Sarah, we are waiting with baited breath.  When will you announce your true intentions?  Stay tuned.  There will be more tomorrow.  Are you bored yet?

(Image source)

(This post is a “Point of View” by Cats r Flyfishn and may not represent the opinion of other Zoo Critters.)

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McCain loses clout with the press – Obama on O’Reilly Factor tomorrow

The Open Season on John McCain and his running-mate-to-be Sarah Palin angers the McCain presidential campaign to a degree, that there is an outright defense battle going on. The campaign strategist Steve Schmidt is livid. The press is notching up the heat.

The Washington Post‘s Howard Kurtz reports:

I’ve talked to many political professionals over the years who were mad at the media, or me in particular.

But I’ve never quite had a conversation like the one Tuesday night with Steve Schmidt.

He was absolutely furious as he unloaded on the journalistic community for, in his view, unfairly savaging Sarah Palin.
Perhaps the greatest concern to the McCain campaign is that the constant inquiries, amplified by cable television debates over whether a mother with a pregnant daughter and four other children can effectively function as vice president, will create a perception that her nomination is in trouble. “We are being bombarded by e-mails and phone calls from journalists asking when she will be dropping out of the race,” Schmidt said. (read more)

John McCain has something to worry about. With the instinct of the newsman, even Rupert Murdoch has struggled hard to get on the right side of Barack Obama. He could achieve a tentative truce. The report indicates to me, that Murdoch expects Obama to do well in the elections. So the Murdoch/Fox bias, while not going away, will be sounding more muted, I expect.

Tomasky the self proclaimed amateur Murdochologist says:

The meeting had been sought for some time. Now, in reading that sentence, you assumed that I meant Obama sought the meeting. But it was the other way around! Now that takes a set, no? Read on:

Obama, on the other hand, was snubbing Murdoch. Every time he reached out (Murdoch executives tried to get the Kennedys to help smooth the way to an introduction), nothing. The Fox stain was on Murdoch.

Eventually, it happened. Rupert and Barack sat “knee to knee.” Obama started asking Murdoch about his relationship with his father. In due course Ailes took Rupe’s place, and Obama basically said to him, I’m not gonna waste my time talking to you as long as your network is just gonna slap me and my wife around. Wolff reports that “a tentative truce was agreed upon.”(read more)

Now it looks as if Obama plans to be on the O’Reilly Factor tomorrow, the day of McCain’s acceptance speech. Don’t miss it.

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The sunday papers – Middle East turmoil

The world is turning outside the US primaries, too and it keeps spinning towards a very nasty escalation in the Middle East. Gaza is burning and despite a security council meeting to end the violence, Israel seems determined to subdue the Palestinians in Gaza at all cost. It has initially warned Palestinians of a holocaust, if the rocket attacks targeted at Israeli towns wouldn’t stop. Israel fired rockets on Gaza and killed two Hamas members, which in turn led to an increased firing of rockets onto Israeli soil. The situation is now deteriorating rapidly with Palestinians in the West Bank clashing with Israeli troops. Scores of Palestinians in Gaza have been killed, many if not most of them, civilians. President Abbas has cancelled all scheduled peace talks. Saudi Arabia and Kuweit have advised their citizens to immediately leave Lebanon.

The Times

Israel’s top brass is saying that its major incursion into Gaza, while very big, is not yet “the big one,” the full-scale invasion and re-occupation of the territory that Israel left in 2005.

The Guardian – Observer

The latest bloodshed comes as an Observer investigation revealed how Israel is again deliberately obstructing the transfer of urgent medical cases for treatment outside Gaza, in the latest extension of its policy of collective punishment of Palestinians.

The Independent

Yossi Beilin, the former minister and ex-leader of the left of centre Meretz Party, said that a diplomatic rather than military solution was needed.

He said that Hamas had at least twice made requests “via a third party” to agree a truce. He added: “My solution is to reach a ceasefire with Hamas.”

A Haaretz-Dialog poll this week showed that 64 per cent of Israelis were in favour of such an agreement to end the rocket fire, and secure the release of the Israeli corporal, Gilad Shalit, who was abducted by Gaza militants in June 2006.

The Telegraph

The head of emergency services at the Palestinian ministry of health said Saturday’s death toll was the worst in Gaza from a single day of fighting for five years. At least three women and nine children, ranging in age from 13 months to 17 years, were reported among the dead.

Condoleeza Rice is due to arrive in the Middle East this week for a new round of talks.

Murdoch’s finest slam Barack Obama, ridicule Hillary Clinton

Where do you go to my lovely?

The Times was for me and still is, mostly, one of the standard bearers of solid conservative journalism. More an institution than a newspaper. The heroes of my childhood, Sherlock Holmes, Hercule Poirot, Lord Peter Wimsey read “The Times”! If it was printed in “The Times” it wasn’t “news” it was “The Truth!”

“The Times” they are achanging…

Obama victory will prolong US racial divide, says British equality chief!

“In truth, Obama may be helping to postpone the arrival of a post-racial America and I think he knows it,” Mr Phillips wrote. “If he wins, the cynicism may be worth it to him and his party. In the end he is a politician and a very good one: his job is to win elections.”

A disclaimer, that Mr Trevor Philips is a controversial figure in Britain right at the end of the article does little to disconnect the paper from the incredibly blatant and stereotypical nonsense that Mr Philips utters. It is made into a headline and made for the headline readers in the hope that it will stick, it is ultimately: Propaganda.

The name of Farrakhan pops up, too, unsursprisingly. But as Bob Cesca said:

During last night’s Democratic debate, and apropos of nothing, NBC’s Tim Russert asked Senator Obama whether he “accepts the support of Louis Farrakhan.” Again, it’s the illusion of balance. But it would only have been balanced if Russert had just previously quizzed Senator Clinton about something equally as ridiculous. For instance, “Senator Clinton: do you accept the support of Ann Coulter who said she’d vote for you over Senator McCain? Ann Coulter once called John Edwards a fag, and she said that Jews need to be perfected. Ha-HAH! Gotcha!”

On the other hand Senator Obama can count himself lucky, he is taken seriously enough to be considered a dangerous left wing threat.

Senator Clinton is less lucky, she has become the target of their ridicule. Her stumbling over the new Russian leader’s name Medvedev in Tuesday’s debate was called her Dubya moment yesterday and this is a calculated insult. Today a smirking foreign editor shows Senator Clinton how it’s done.

Many, like myself, crave for substantial journalism and seek it in newspapers with an untainted reputation for solid journalistic handicraft. We will have to seek elsewhere. Because, however positive my impression of Senator Barack Obama, I would like to see relentless scrutiny of his and every other politician’s doings. That is why the press is called “the fourth estate” not the “fifth”. They are to be our watchdog!

“Europeanview” wishes you all a relaxed, happy and healthy Thusday – Weekend is just around the corner!