Monthly Archives: August 2016

Photo Finish

August drawings. Something to relieve the heaviousity.

hart williams august drawings

Pictures below the fold.

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Really Bad Journalism 101


It’s not often that the stench of the really bad article wafts so odoriferously from the Atlantic to the Pacific, but today’s Washington Post [WaPo] piece in question does, raising the question: Is it even POSSIBLE to get up wind of this?

‘Dr. Drew’ show canceled days after host’s negative speculation about Hillary Clinton’s health
Fred Barbash / Washington Post

Drew Pinsky’s six-year-old HLN show, “Dr. Drew On Call,” has been canceled by CNN, effective Sept. 22. In a statement, CNN executive vice president Ken Jautz said he and Pinsky “have mutually agreed to air the final episode of his show on September 22″ but gave no specific reason for the cancellation.

CNN Money, in its reporting of the announcement, connected it to a broader shakeup at HLN, including the end of Nancy Grace’s flamboyant show devoted to criminal court cases. But the decision came eight days after Pinsky’s comments on a radio show on Aug. 17 questioning the health and medical care of former secretary of state Hillary Clinton …

Seriously? You’re going to make Pinsky’s UNETHICAL* commentary the reason for his firing? Perhaps he was crappy all on his own? No: the “Drew Pinsky, Martyr” narrative (cribbed in this article from Right Wing websites) is the driving “motivation” in this story, without the slightest proof that it even exists! [* see below] Continue reading


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The Clinton Rules on Reporting … Again

gopaganda victims

The whole panoply of Republican disinformation was on display this week, leading up to the traditional Labor Day kickoff of the presidential campaign (after the “Death March to Bataan” primaries and year preceding them): lies, deception, lies, mendacity, lies, prevarication, lies and manipulation of a bought and complicit “mass media” owned by the One Percent via six media companies. And then came the Clinton Foundation “scandal.” It was ubiquitous this morning. And it was false:

The AP’s big exposé on Hillary meeting with Clinton Foundation donors is a mess
Matthew Yglesias / Vox

—  Tuesday afternoon, Stephen Braun and Eileen Sullivan of the Associated Press released the results of a review of State Department appointment data that they used to make some striking claims about Hillary Clinton’s schedule as secretary of state…. Except it turns out not to be true. The nut fact that the AP uses to lead its coverage is wrong, and Braun and Sullivan’s reporting reveals absolutely no unethical conduct.

I will not belabor the fact further here, because there is a wider issue at play and, given what we’ve seen this week, the double standard of “reporting” and “facts” will continue to hold sway, to the detriment of the voters and to the republic for which they stand in line to vote. Continue reading

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The Great Gawker Lie

gawker RIP

Gawker is dead. It is dead because they decided, cruelly, to “out” a wealthy gay man, and then foolishly decided to publish a stolen sex tape from a public figure and then refused to take it down because of their committment to “journalism.”  And now this: is out of business because one wealthy person maliciously set out to destroy it, spending millions of dollars in secret, and succeeded. That is the only reason.

Yes, Virginia, some sophist has decided to continue to bamboozle the public and the poorly-educated among the journalistic community that Gawker was a champion of journalism and free speech, rather than an arrogant assortment of snarky wordsmiths with an inflated view of their value to society and a casual disregard for the pain that their words could cause, magnified through the megaphone of mass media:

Gawker Was Murdered by Gaslight
Tom Scocca / Gawker

—  A lie with a billion dollars behind it is stronger than the truth.  Peter Thiel has shut down  —  This is the final act in what Thiel wished to present, and succeeded in presenting, as a simple and ancient morality play, a story of hubris meeting its punishment….

Alas, the moral question is far different than Mr. Scocca pretends it to be. Continue reading

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Quick: What is the GOP term for ‘Political Correctness’?


I  know that they MUST have one, and that it MUST have an Orwellian tinge, like “Clean Skies Initiative.”  The latest example of whatever-you-call-it showed its ugly face for the Olympics (and, of course, NOT racially at all):

Social Media Outraged After Gabby Douglas Doesn’t Put Hand Over Heart During National Anthem
CBS New York

RIO DE JANEIRO — Several people took to Twitter to take Gabby Douglas to task for not putting her hand over her heart during the national anthem after the U.S. women’s gymnastics team captured the gold at the Olympics….

No Republican leaders in evidence, of course. Continue reading

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Curt Kurtz Criticizes Without Saying Anything

howard kurtz

Howie Kurtz definitely leaned to the right when he was at the Washington Post, pretending NOT to. I covered this during the “Private Beauchamp” controversy*, when the “milbloggers” and the Bush Administration ganged up on The New Republic to slander and smear their anonymous soldier correspondent who’d had the unmitigated gall to suggest that all of our troops in Iraq WEREN’T angels with dirty faces and  only slightly tarnished halos.

(Beauchamp’s sergeant, BTW, is serving a 40 year sentence in Leavenworth prison, for the execution-style murder of four Iraqi detainees — so much for the simon-pure myth.) Almost no one remembers that Howie Kurtz PERSONALLY walked that story from the Right-wing Echo Machine into the mainstream**.  And since he’s been at Faux Nooz, Howie seems to have found his “niche.”

Media trumpeting Trump implosion, but is it real?
Howard Kurtz / Fox News

This is what a full-fledged feeding frenzy looks like. With Donald Trump facing the roughest stretch of his candidacy, the media have moved from questioning his sanity to depicting a campaign in disarray and top Republicans still wondering whether they can dump the nominee. That won’t happen, of course, but it’s an indication of the toxic nature of the coverage and the flood of anti-Trump leaks now washing across the media landscape….

It is worth taking the time to note that the article he writes manages to say virtually nothing, takes no stance and doesn’t really question the stories he claims to question. Instead, he sticks to vacuous statements that vaguely question without strenuously defending or correcting … ANYthing. Continue reading

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