Finally, an in-depth response from Her Madameship!
I want the public to see my email. I asked State to release them. They said they will review them for release as soon as possible.
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) March 5, 2015
See? Everything is on the up and up. Hillary is going to have the State Department release emails from her private server. No word on how many people she has chained in a basement and scrubbing those emails first, all the while screaming, “Remember what happened to Vince Foster!” to make them work faster.
Meanwhile, the press was quick to pretend this nothingburger tweet was a thing.
Fast-forward to 19:12 (or better yet, just watch the whole thing).
In the world of contemporary feminist politics, criticism of Islam is off the table. Unless, of course, you’re a female Muslim in a Muslim-dominated country who desperately seeks reform. If you are, you’re stuck banging your head against the wall as your sisters in the West do everything to ignore you in pursuit of wage equality, sexual consent apps, and chronicling Lena Dunham’s latest hair adventure.
Most women who follow feminist media is sadly too drunk on the Kool Aid to realize that popular sites like Jezebel, Feministing, the Mary Sue, Everyday Feminism, and the Feminist Majority Foundation have all failed to comment on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s historic address to Congress. Their flagrant ignorance of the most important foreign policy issue of our time is inexcusable. The willful blind eye they continue to turn towards women oppressed by radical Islamic rule is unforgivable. In one simple, powerful sentence Netanyahu did what contemporary feminists in the West refuse to do:
In this deadly game of thrones, there’s no place for America or for Israel, no peace for Christians, Jews or Muslims who don’t share the Islamist medieval creed, no rights for women, no freedom for anyone.
His Game of Thrones mention received more attention than did the fact that Netanyahu equated “freedom for anyone” with “no rights for women.” There’s your meme. There’s your platform. There’s your unifying fact: If women are not free, no one is free. And yet here Western feminists remain embroiled in a heated debate over Patricia Arquette’s lack of “intersectionality“. There’s an age-old meme for that one, too: It’s the pot calling the kettle black.
In appearing before Congress today, Bibi Netanyahu did more for women oppressed by Islam than the feminist movement has on a worldwide scale. He joins a small but powerful group of real feminists including Nonie Darwish, Wafa Sultan, and Ayaan Hirsi Ali who are brave enough to use their western platforms to speak out on an issue vital to women across the globe. Israel’s Prime Minister ended his speech by quoting Moses: “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them…“. It’s time contemporary feminists ask themselves what they are so afraid of.
L.A. is freezing. The sharks have chewed through all the heating vents! #Sharknado3
— Ann Coulter (@AnnCoulter) March 2, 2015
The Hollywood Reporter details:
Mark Cuban and Ann Coulter have joined the growing list of guest stars for the third TV movie in the phenomenon, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
Launching in July, Sharknado 3 will be set in Washington, D.C., this time and, per Syfy, will “cause mass destruction in the nation’s capital” before it roars down the Eastern Seaboard.
Entrepreneur/Dallas Mavericks owner Cuban of Shark Tank will play the president, while conservative commentator/author Coulter will play the vp.
They join a rapidly growing list of guest stars set to cameo in the third film, including Bo Derek as May, the mother to star Tara Reid‘s April; Jerry Springer, appearing as Mr. White, a manic tourist; ‘N Sync’s Chris Kirkpatrick as a pool lifeguard; and Chris Jericho, who will play Bruce, a roller-coaster ride operator.
It would seem like an odd place to find one of the most hawkish conservative commentators in America. Then again, it’s far more entertaining to consider the fact that political commentators who are also well-known actors, like Janeane “Where the hell did she go?” Garofalo, didn’t make the cut. Apparently it doesn’t pay to ditch your sense of humor for the sake of your politics after all. So much for being accused of embodying every nasty conservative female stereotype under the sun: Coulter proves she’s hipper and funnier than any liberal elite with a pop culture pedigree.
Let’s just hope this doesn’t turn into another Iron Sky. The 2012 Finnish schlock film that pitted moon-Nazis against a pseudo-President Palin has been accused of abusing the same old tired jokes about the former VP-nom. As long as the Sharknado team sticks to the camp sensibility that has turned a low budget TV movie into an international sensation, chances are Coulter will get a fair shake — and perhaps even a trademark dry line or two.
MAYBE those of us who write about politics and campaigns should adopt a bristly uniform of hair shirts, so that we’re constantly atoning for our sins. Maybe we should wear targets, the better for our critics to take aim at us.
Oh, how we’re hated. And as another presidential race takes shape, that hatred gathers force. Hillary Clinton’s protectors cast us as bloodthirsty raptors intent on finding flaw where none exists. Chris Christie was asked what he’d given up for Lent and said that it would have been The New York Times, but then his priest told him he had to forswear something he’d truly miss.
Scott Walker thinks we’re laying an elaborate trap for him, and after The Washington Post inquired if he regarded President Obama as Christian, he not only punted but also bellowed about “gotcha” questions, griping: “This is a classic example of why people hate Washington and, increasingly, they dislike the press.”
Dislike? Increasingly? Either he was being charitable or he hasn’t read the polling. The public’s esteem for us has been abysmal for a good long while.
Don’t get too excited, though. As I wrote on Twitter: “One of those bait and switch pieces that begins as a mea culpa and turns into a tu quoque. Hackwork.” Bruni’s prescriptions for the media include not hyping New Hampshire and Iowa (duh, but never happen), “go easy on the spouses” (tell that to Sarah Palin and her family), stop hyping non-starting fringe freak-show candidates like Donald Trump and Michele Bachmann (here we agree), etc. Then he tells us what’s right with the media, which basically negates everything he just said. Here’s a better list of what’s wrong with the media:
- It’s one giant club. Trust me on this, as I was part of it for 25 years. They all went to the same schools, studied the same subjects, live in the same neighborhoods in Manhattan and Washington, D.C. Not only do they not know you, they don’t know anybody who knows you.
- Incest is best. The big-time media pool is rather shallow. On the road, they have affairs with each other. At home, they marry each other. It’s nearly inconceivable that they marry outside the circle. And then they raise their kids to be journalists, too.
- They’re all in bed with the Obama administration. From the Rhodes brothers to Jay Carney and Claire Shipman, to Rick Stengel, the super-cozy relationship between reporters and administration officials — born of their shared devotion to the Democrat Party — just comes naturally.
- They don’t know anything about anything, except “journalism.” Imagine a press run entirely by liberal-arts majors: this is contemporary American journalism. And they have degrees in journalism to prove it! On the several occasions when I have been invited to throw my hat into the ring and take over a major J-school, I always write back that I could change the curriculum to de-emphasize journalism courses and add a heavy concentration of literature, writing, languages (indispensable) and even firearms training, so they would know what the hell they’re talking about when they cover Second Amendment issues. Needless to say, that is the last I ever hear from them.
- They are intellectually incurious. Try to talk to a national political reporter about anything except national politics and maybe, just maybe, baseball. You will get a blank stare.
- They don’t understand people, for whom they mostly have contempt. When you live in the Bos-Wash corridor, everything else is flyover country, including California. It’s populated by “the other” — Christians, gun nuts, hillbillies who didn’t go to Harvard. Big-time journalists approach such people like anthropologists doing field work — and then they make fun of them. And by “them,” I mean “you.”
- They’re mostly irreligious or atheists. And the rest of us are not. So good for Ana Marie Cox for her brave — yes, brave – piece in the Daily Beast the other day. If you haven’t read it yet, drop whatever you’re doing and then comment below.
SNL did a spoof of the Toyota Camry commercial involving a proud father taking his daughter to meet up with fellow military recruits at the airport. In the SNL version, 50 Shades star Dakota Johnson played the daughter who, this time, joined ISIS.
I could get all uptight over this, but I’m not. The entire sketch played out rather well by SNL standards. It wasn’t too long, too overbearing, too improvised. It played on the fact that yes, young women in the West are joining ISIS, and it did so in a rather clever way, contrasting the proud military dad with the teary-eyed dad asking the ISIS commanders to take care of his daughter. All in all, why wouldn’t the sketch have been green lit for production?
The fact that the sketch also highlights the audience’s relative naivete and passive-aggressive, ultimately non-responsive attitude towards the threat posed by ISIS shouldn’t be dismissed as a typical conservative take-down, either. As a member of the generation who grew up with SNL, I am battle-hardened by the cynical, borderline nihilistic thread in the show’s ironic humor. We are the powerless generation, after all. Our baby-boomer parents gave up, gave in and didn’t give a crap about us, so why should we care about anything? The target audience might be so-called “hopeful” millennials now, but the dark Matt Groening/Kurt Cobain reality is what informed the show’s current set of writers and producers. Had they wanted to take the irony to a newer, funnier and even more relevant level, they would’ve had Johnson present the ISIS commander with a sex contract app via iPhone. But that’s still a little too 21st century for this obviously ’90s crowd.
SNL’s original baby boomer generation cast had their own ironic take for sure. But it was a hopeful one that mocked the system with the goal of improving it, if by no other means that simply inspiring thought-provoking conversation. Today we just throw our hands up at the threat, laugh and look around for that joint we keep misplacing backstage. And that’s the real shame of the now-infamous Dakota Johnson/ISIS sketch. Not that it wasn’t funny, but that its humor doesn’t really matter at all.
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker is the fastest-rising star in conservative politics.
He’s rocketing to the top-tier of potential 2016 GOP contenders following a strong appearance in Iowa last month and surging to the front of the pack in a handful of polls.
But coming off a 2012 cycle that saw Republican candidates rise and fall with the regularity of a finely-made Swiss watch, Walker’s challenge now is figuring out a way to sustain the momentum.
The writer is being coy here: Walker isn’t just the fastest rising star, he has become the 800 lb. gorilla of the GOP almost overnight. CNN’s sudden concern about his ability to sustain momentum is basically its way of saying that Walker hasn’t really made any missteps yet, even though the more unhinged among the MSM have just spent a week trying unsuccessfully to prove otherwise.
The article’s allusion to the 2012 elections ignores the fact that Walker has won three elections in four years. He’s campaign-ready and unlikely to provide the left with the Todd Akin moment it is so desperately hoping for at this time. The way he handled the manufactured drama over his refusal to play “Gotcha!” with the press about President Obama proves that.
The JTA reports:
More than half of current American Jewish college students have personally witnessed or experienced an anti-Semitic incident, according to a new study.
Some 54 percent of Jewish college students participating in the survey released Monday by the Louis D. Brandeis Center and Trinity College said they had experienced or witnessed anti-Semitism within the past academic year. The survey was taken in the spring of 2014, prior to the outbreak of hostilities last summer in Gaza.
The online survey of 1,157 students, conducted by Trinity College Professor Barry Kosmin and Associate Professor Ariela Keysar, found that percentages of students reporting encounters with anti-Semitism were relatively consistent across gender, religious outlook, and geographical region.
Students who affiliate with the Conservative and Reform movements were more likely to report such experiences than Orthodox students, with 69 percent of Conservative students, 62 percent of Reform students and 52 percent of Orthodox students responding that they had reported anti-Semitic encounters. Those who said they were always open about their Jewishness on campus were roughly as likely to have encountered anti-Semitism as those who said they were never open about their Jewishness, at 58 percent and 59 percent respectively.
According to the report, those taking the survey defined the term “anti-Semitic incident”. The organization Jew Hatred on Campus, a new organization established by the David Horowitz Freedom Center,
…compiled a list of the 10 U.S. campuses having the worst anti-Semitic activity in 2014. Universities included in the top 10 played host to numerous incidents of anti-Jewish acts, such as Israeli Apartheid Week (a week-long event that demonizes the Jewish state); interrupting university activities by staging mock “checkpoints” on campus; campus speakers that call for the destruction of the Jewish state; and verbal or physical harassment and violence against Jewish and pro-Israel students. These anti-Semitic incidents occur on university property, often with the support of university funds, despite the fact that such behavior is explicitly forbidden under campus codes of conduct.
From my own personal experience I’d add to the list a set of individual encounters with various students who questioned me as to why “there are so many of you in the media” and demanded my opinions about the”injustice” of the non-massacre at Jenin. In the case of these encounters, each oddly enough motivated by foreign students from Middle Eastern Muslim nations, the interrogators waited until we were alone with no witnesses before launching the “conversations”.
Perhaps it’s time campus Jewish groups start offering Krav Maga classes.
By the time most folks at home had passed out from boredom, or gone to bed because they have real jobs to wake up for on Monday morning, Patricia Arquette sobered up enough to use her Best Supporting Actress win to preach to the choir about wage inequality.
Snort, blink, roll over, resume snooze.
The speech stood in stark contrast to host Neil Patrick Harris’s earlier joke about the $160,000 SWAG bags being given to those nominated in the Oscars’ top 5 categories. After saying that the bags were loaded with such goodies as two vacations and a $20,000 astrology reading, Harris joked that the bags also contained “an armored car ride to safety when the revolution comes.” The stars clad in gold and diamonds responded with appropriate Marie Antoinette-style laughs and gloved claps.
Having won the Oscar, Arquette won’t be getting any SWAG. Those bags are only for the runners-up. Perhaps that’s what she meant when she referenced wage inequality among the rich and famous. Shouldn’t all the beautiful people get $20,000 astrology readings for free?
92.5 million of the Oscars’ potential viewers are currently jobless. For Arquette’s reference, that’s boys as well as girls. Those 92.5 mil and their employed compatriots just spent a week listening to their president tell them he could solve the problem of terrorism (not Islamic, just terrorism) by offering ISIS members (ironically notably all Islamic terrorists) the power of job creation. While the men of ISIS would argue that they already have jobs, I bet the women that have been kidnapped by ISIS and forced into marriages/sex slavery would really dig some income equality right now. Or perhaps just some equality in general.
But hey, Hollywood women suffer. They don’t get paid “as much” and they definitely don’t all get the SWAG at the parties. Thanks, Patricia, for addressing the economic inequalities in our society that, much like the revolution preached and fostered by your fellow stars, is the responsibility of none other than Hollywood’s favorite politicians.
Had Arquette really wanted to bring a much-needed laugh to the boring ceremony, she would’ve threatened that Hollywood’s women would join ISIS if their wage issues weren’t resolved. If there’s anything that can’t wear down radical, non-descript terrorists, it’s the incessant whining of spoiled socialists.
And the award for capturing the complete immaturity of the Oscars goes to …Dakota “Fifty Shades” Johnson!
Caught on the red carpet before the show, the Fifty Shades star and her infinitely-more-famous-even-though-you-haven’t-seen-her-since-Working Girl mother, Melanie Griffith, illustrated how awkwardmMillennial parenting can be. When asked if she’s seen her daughter’s turn as Anastasia in the fanfiction-turned-film, Griffith replied in the negative. At that point Johnson’s eyes fell towards the ground as she mumbled that her mother would probably, eventually see the movie.
Griffith was having none of it.
As E.T.‘s Lara Spencer proclaimed what a fabulous actress Dakota “I stole the flogger from the set” Johnson was in the movie, Griffith pulled a master mother move. “I don’t need to see the movie to know that.” Tsk tsk, don’t accuse a mother of not supporting her baby, despite the ramifications of her burgeoning porn career.
Did Griffith just come out as the anti-Kris Jenner? There’s only one of two ways to react when your daughter sexually exploits herself on camera. Griffith’s response was downright Downton dowager, politely and quickly cutting to the point: Griffith isn’t going to be one of those Hollywood mothers who praises, let alone cashes in on what she obviously feels was her daughter’s bad decision.
In what is quickly being dubbed as one of the most awkward moments on the red carpet, Johnson rolled her eyes and threw a fit befitting a 15 year old who’s about to lose their iPhone privileges. Apparently sexual maturity doesn’t maketh the woman the way “manners maketh the man.” The behind the scenes conversations regarding this acting choice would make a better movie than the Snowdragons Icequeen could ever have conjured up.
Apparently Johnson’s maternal relationship isn’t her only pairing that’s on the rocks following the release of Fifty Shades. Days before the Oscars, the news broke that Johnson was dumped by her boyfriend of six months because “her life was getting too crazy and it wasn’t something that he wanted to be a part of.”
It’s the kind of headline that makes you look twice. Is this guy for real? Is this from The Onion? Then you realize that indeed Time editor at large Jeffrey Kluger actually wrote “Facebook Must Shut Down the Anti-Vaxxers”:
[They] do their work at the grass-roots, retail, one-on-one level. Convince Mother A of the fake dangers of vaccines and you increase the odds that she won’t vaccinate Child B – and perhaps Children C, D, or E either. And every unvaccinated child in her brood increases the risk to the neighborhood, the school, the community – the entire herd…
One thing that would help – something [Facebook head Mark] Zuckerberg could do with little more than a flick of the switch, as could Twitter CEO Dick Costolo and the other bosses of other sites – is simply shut the anti-vaxxers down. Really. Pull their pages, block their posts, twist the spigot of misinformation before more people get hurt.
The very idea of muzzling any information – even misinformation – will surely send libertarians to their fainting couches. Similarly, people who believe they understand the Constitution but actually don’t will immediately invoke the First Amendment. But of course they’re misguided. Is Facebook a government agency? No, its not. Is Zuckerberg a government offical? No, he’s not. Then this is not a First Amendment issue. Read your Constitution.
Of course, Kluger is right about the First Amendment. Facebook’s banning or blocking of any user for any reason is not a free speech issue in the constitutional sense. That’s an important point to make in a context where mishandling of constitutional rhetoric is commonplace.
Be that as it may, Kluger’s suggestion remains a free speech issue in the cultural sense. The reason we have a First Amendment is because we believe on principle that ideas should succeed or fail in open discourse on their merits. To wield a platform on the scale of Facebook to mute one side of a conversation on public policy violates that principle, even if it doesn’t violate the law, and even if such action remains Zuckerberg’s unquestioned right.
Indeed, we might apply Kluger’s argument to any form of discrimination. For instance, we could say that white restaurateurs should be able to deny service to black customers. The Civil Rights Act of 1964 and similar state laws notwithstanding, such discrimination remains constitutional for the same reason Facebook banning anti-vaxxers would be. Restaurants aren’t government agencies either.
Yet, we rightly balk at the notion of such discrimination, and most of us would socially censure anyone who engaged in it. The same free association right which Kluger urges Zuckerberg to employ against anti-vaxxers can be employed by others against Kluger and Time. It’s offensive to suggest that people need to be silenced, and offers one of the weakest of possible arguments against their position – the argument from intimidation.
Kluger and Time ought to be ashamed of themselves for publishing this piece, and Zuckerberg would do well to ignore it.
(Today’s Fightin Words podcast is on this topic available here.)
People are wetting themselves over on Twitter right now after Muslims formed a human chain around a synagogue in Oslo, Norway, yesterday following the terror attack this week at a synagogue in Copenhagen, Denmark.
Here’s some of the reaction, beginning with GOP pollster Frank Luntz:
Norwegian Muslims form human shield around Oslo synagogue. http://t.co/YW1D4v64vh
— Frank Luntz (@FrankLuntz) February 22, 2015
In Norway, Muslims formed a human chain around a synagogue today chanting "no to anti-Semitism, no to Islamaphobia." pic.twitter.com/8j7pTR1VnU
— Tim Shorrock (@TimothyS) February 21, 2015
— Terrorism Updates (@terrorism_info) February 22, 2015
Now I’m not going to get into the motives of those involved today, but color me skeptical of these types of events for several reasons.
First, if you contact the international media to cover your event, forgive me if I question your sincerity. Your staged “Ring of Peace” photo op is really a “Ring of Propaganda.” Matthew 6:1-4 and all that.
Secondly, when you use actual victims (Jews) to try to make yourselves (Muslims) the victims by leading your chants with “No to anti-Semitism,” and then smuggling in your “Islamophobia” narrative, I’m calling BS.
As Reuters reported, this is what happened:
More than 1000 Muslims formed a human shield around Oslo’s synagogue on Saturday, offering symbolic protection for the city’s Jewish community and condemning an attack on a synagogue in neighboring Denmark last weekend.
Chanting “No to anti-Semitism, no to Islamophobia,” Norway’s Muslims formed what they called a ring of peace a week after Omar Abdel Hamid El-Hussein, a Danish-born son of Palestinian immigrants, killed two people at a synagogue and an event promoting free speech in Copenhagen last weekend.
When you fail to leave your own agenda at home, this isn’t about protecting victims, it’s about you grinding your “Islamophobia” narrative.
Thirdly, these Muslim “human chain” photo ops are never around when you actually need them.
To emphasize that last point, let me tell you two stories.
The first begins in July 2013 in Sohag, Egypt. After Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi of the Muslim Brotherhood was deposed following the largest protests in recorded human history, the Muslim Brotherhood staged a “human chain” photo op in Sohag saying they were going to protect the St. George Church as a show of interfaith solidarity, notwithstanding those filthy infidel Coptic Christians backing General (now President) Sisi for removing Morsi.
The MB’s “human chain” event in front of St. George Church also made international news, with this picture being widely circulated as evidence of interfaith cooperation:
It should be noted that the picture itself is watermarked by the pro-Brotherhood Rassd.com online news portal.
Alas, that’s not where the story ends. Several weeks after their “human chain” photo op, the Muslim Brotherhood torched the very same St. George Church in Sohag following the dispersal of the Muslim Brotherhood protests in Rabaa Square in Cairo.
Here’s a picture of the attack on the Mar Girgis church tweeted out by ABC News foreign editor Jon Williams:
— Jon Williams (@WilliamsJon) August 14, 2013
And even AlJazeera reported on the looting and torching of St. George’s:
— AJE News (@AJENews) August 14, 2013
The second story takes place just weeks after the sacking of the church in Sohag.
On September 22, 2013, two suicide bombers killed 127 worshipers at the All Saints Church in Peshawar, Pakistan. Nearly a month after the attack, Muslims staged yet another “human chain” to protest the Peshawar church bombing. Just as today in Oslo, the international media was there pushing all of the predictable progressive “interfaith” tropes:
— IFC (@IFCMW) October 21, 2013
Just one problem. Ignore the fact that this is nearly a month after the bombings. The Muslim “human chain” protest occurred in Lahore — 250 miles away from the church that was bombed in Peshawar — a fact that didn’t go unnoticed:
— Rakesh Lakhani (@rakesh_lakhani) October 14, 2013
So before we start declaring ISIS defeated after the staged event this weekend in Oslo, let me suggest that, as was the case in Sohag, when you burn the church down a couple of weeks after you stage your “Muslim human chain” you somewhat negate your message. Just saying.
And until we see these “Muslim human chains” form somewhere and at a time when it actually makes a difference (e.g. in Copenhagen where the synagogue was attacked, not in Oslo 300 miles away), please spare me your interfaith back-patting narratives. I’ll be more impressed if your human chain shows up when it matters.
UPDATE: So apparently Frank Luntz took umbrage at my calling him out on Twitter.
— Patrick Poole (@pspoole) February 22, 2015
— Frank Luntz (@FrankLuntz) February 22, 2015
— Patrick Poole (@pspoole) February 22, 2015
— Frank Luntz (@FrankLuntz) February 22, 2015
— Patrick Poole (@pspoole) February 22, 2015
It’s not clear to me what Luntz is questioning. Both the human chain event and the sacking of the church in Sohag were both widely publicized. Here’s video of the torching of Mar Girgis in Sohag (the same site as the human chain):
And here’s video from the Sohag church’s Youtube channel showing the destruction and directly placing blame on the Muslim Brotherhood:
As I told Luntz, my 3-part series on my trip to Egypt, including touring the burned-out churches, monasteries and Coptic orphanages in Upper Egypt, will be published here at PJ Media shortly.
With the President’s three-day White House Summit on Countering Violent Extremism trending on Twitter and in the news, we here at PJ Media are bringing you this exclusive insider video of an off-the-record secret summit panel discussion today grappling with the “root causes” driving a group of “youths” nabbed in a recent terror arrest:
This morning, as the summit on violent extremism continued at the White House and the State Department insisted jihadis need jobs, CNN delved into what really lures people to the Islamic State.
The segment was about what lures “the most highly sought-after targets: Western women” to join ISIS’ ranks.
“How do you relay your message of jihad in a way Westerners understand?” host Carol Costello said, referring to the terrorists’ strong presence on social media. “ISIS is talking online about jars of Nutella, pictures of kittens and emojis. They want people to believe their life on the battlefield isn’t so different than yours. They actually eat Nutella, and I guess they have pet kittens.”
It’s true that ISIS fighters have tweeted pics posing with jars of Nutella, and the women of ISIS have included the Italian hazelnut spread in recipes shared online.
New York magazine got a female ISIS Nutella fan to explain why: “I don’t know, perhaps all the sisters who liked Nutella in the west decided to migrate to sham..?” She added that when they came to the Islamic State they were greeted by “shops were stocked with goodies such as Nutella, kinder bueno, snickers and just things we would find back home. And so I guess that’s why its so popular…. it’s a luxury we never thought we would find in this war torn country.”
And those kittens? Yes, there is a Twitter account that hasn’t been updated in a while but specializes is posting pics of terrorists and their cats.
Ad Week had a bit of advice for CNN: “Even if the segment was about how ISIS was adopting a Western style approach to social media to seem less threatening and ultimately lure recruits (which it wasn’t), avoid screen-grabbable-and-meme-ready graphics like the above, which distract from the discussion, rather than inform it. Far more people have seen that graphic online–free of context–than watched the segment, and for them, it’s been nothing but a lure for people to crack jokes. Just a thought.”
Obama approves emergency shipments of kittens and nutella to the moderate Syrian opposition.
— Murtaza Hussain (@MazMHussain) February 18, 2015
Oh please we recruited half of our staff with kittens and nutella pic.twitter.com/3w436jAzl3
— Max Fisher (@Max_Fisher) February 18, 2015
Next, kittens dipped in Nutella. pic.twitter.com/PLk05TT3Ef
— Luke Baker (@LukeReuters) February 18, 2015
Here’s a sophisticated infographic explaining how ISIS’s secret plan will unfold. pic.twitter.com/X5xMlai9YN
— Karl Sharro (@KarlreMarks) February 18, 2015
Last week, I told you the sad news:
The Sun News Network, Canada’s only conservative/libertarian alternative to the state-sponsored Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) and other equally liberal TV channels, went off the air after four years.
Because the media’s favorite topic is “the media,” you can imagine the avalanche of “analysis” that followed, from Canada’s pundits and papers.
(By “analysis” I mean “unrestrained gloating bordering on slander,” although I also saw former Sun employees on social media, thanking particular fellow journalists for their words of support.)
It didn’t take long, though, for that story to get pushed aside by another one:
The launch of a new media venture to take Sun’s place.
And it “didn’t take long” because the face of this new venture — called TheRebel.media — is Ezra Levant.
This tweet says it all:
— Rahim Mohamed (@rmohamed_nc) February 17, 2015
Ezra Levant was arguably the most famous, daring and controversial of all Sun’s hosts.
Before joining the network, he became world famous for printing the “Danish Mohammed” cartoons (and being taken to “court” for doing so).
While doing his daily TV show, he wrote a number of books, and remained in demand as a public speaker.
Even before Sun News came along, I was comparing Ezra to Evil Knievel, and now that description seems more apt than ever.
He’s up and around already with TheRebel.media, a web-based media play that’s still in the very early stages.
For now, here’s Ezra Levant explaining what went wrong with Sun News — he calls it “the best job he ever had” — and what the future holds:
Qatar’s Al Jazeera network got their hands caught in the proverbial felafel jar today when it recycled pictures of dead children from an accident months ago, claiming they were killed in Egypt’s overnight bombing of ISIS positions in Derna, Libya.
The pictures were posted on both the Al Jazeera website and their Facebook page. The picture has been changed on their website and the Facebook post has been removed, but I did screen capture the Facebook posting:
— Alwasat (@alwasatengnews) February 16, 2015
— إسلام الديب (@Deebo250) February 16, 2015
That hasn’t prevented others from repeating Al Jazeera’s claims that 40-50 women and children were killed in the overnight airstrikes:
من 40 الي 50 قتيل طفل ونساء كانوا نائمين ليبين اتقتلوا في طبرق – طيب الفيديو مصورمصريين اتقتلوا في طرابلس (غرب… http://t.co/Se9KWm46hL
— مصطفي ابو العدل (@mostafaaboadll) February 16, 2015
Egyptian Twitter users were quick to express frustration with the network’s ongoing information war against Egypt:
Want to know why Egyptians hate AJ? here you go, it's using old pics of kids claiming they were killed by Egypt army https://t.co/pjbCruM1Fz
— Mina Fayek (@minafayek) February 16, 2015
— The Big Pharaoh (@TheBigPharaoh) February 16, 2015
Since the ouster of Muslim Brotherhood president Mohamed Morsi in Egypt after the massive June 30, 2013 protests, many in the Middle East have grown to see Al Jazeera not as a news network but as an information warfare arm of the State of Qatar and their owner, Qatar’s ruler Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani.
In December, AlJazeera shut down its Egyptian channel in an effort to smooth relations between Egypt and Qatar.
The tension between the two states could be seen in the international protests devoted to the cause of three Al Jazeera employees that had been jailed in the wake of the June 30th revolution on charges of attempting to undermine the new Egyptian government.
While whole news organizations dedicated themselves to the Al Jazeera employees’ release, highlighted by the #FreeAJStaff hashtag, there was little discussion that Egyptian authorities had repeatedly warned Al Jazeera that they were not properly licensed to broadcast out of the country.
All three of the Al Jazeera employees have recently been released. Peter Greste, an Australian citizen, was released and deported on February 1st. The other two employees, Mohamed Fahmy and Baher Mohamed were released last week on $33,000 (US) bail.
And yet when Fahmy and Mohamed were released, despite more than a year of agitation directed at Egypt for their employees’ release, the network refused to pay their bail:
— سلطان سعود القاسمي (@SultanAlQassemi) February 15, 2015
Even after his release, Mohamed Fahmy admits that his case wasn’t entirely about free expression, but rather Qatar’s weaponizing Al Jazeera against its perceived international enemies:
Their arrest came against the backdrop of deteriorating ties between Cairo and Doha, which backed the Muslim Brotherhood government of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi.
Morsi was ousted by then army chief Sisi in July 2013.
“This case is partly about freedom of expression … however there is also a part of the case that is an ongoing cold war and score settling between Qatar and Egypt,” Fahmy said.
That more of an admission than you would hear from most U.S. establishment media outlets.
Canadian liberals are gloating this morning (actually, that’s an understatement) as word spreads that Sun News Network — dubbed “Fox News North” by those same detractors — has shut down.
I’ve posted numerous Sun News clips here at PJMedia over the years, particularly segments starring Ezra Levant and Brian Lilley.
They and their colleagues at Sun broke major stories, covered issues the country’s lockstep liberal media either wouldn’t touch or misreported, and interviewed guests you didn’t see anywhere else.
The problem was, cable providers weren’t required to carry Sun News like they are more established, mainstream news channels. Sun pleaded with the bureaucrats in charge for “must carry” status, and lost.
After that, its shutdown was only a matter of time.
The autopsies have already begun.
Liberals are crowing, with intentional irony, that “the market has spoken,” but that “market” was never entirely “free,” given Sun’s handicapped position on the “dial.”
Many admit to not owning a TV anyhow, or being unprepared to pay the extra cable charges required to watch Sun as part of “specialty” packages.
Which is a shame. It’s funny how people can always find money and time for what’s really important to them.
After whining for generations about the lack of conservative/libertarian TV programming, not enough Canadians were willing to cough up a few dollars a month to watch it.
As Lance said here:
“Blame goes to us, not to anyone else.”
Anyway, here’s what Levant tweeted early this morning — a fitting valediction via Theodore Roosevelt:
— Ezra Levant (@ezralevant) February 13, 2015
A lot of this would be funny if it weren’t true. We’re all sharing a bad dream and no one is going to wake us up for another year and a half.
President Obama today submitted his plan to Congress for an authorization of military force against “the so-called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.”
The White House also added an afternoon statement in the Roosevelt Room to the president’s schedule.
ISIS, Obama argues to Congress in the letter accompanying his proposal, “threatens American personnel and facilities located in the region and is responsible for the deaths of U.S. citizens James Foley, Steven Sotloff, Abdul-Rahman Peter Kassig, and Kayla Mueller.”
“If left unchecked, ISIL will pose a threat beyond the Middle East, including to the United States homeland,” he added.
He stressed that current AUMFs make his strikes against ISIS targets in Syria and Iraq legal, but “I have repeatedly expressed my commitment to working with the Congress to pass a bipartisan authorization for the use of military force.”
The proposal doesn’t address the 2001 AUMF, though Obama said he’d like to “refine, and ultimately repeal” it.
Obama’s AUMF plan specifically “does not authorize the use of the United States Armed Forces in enduring offensive ground combat operations.”
Secretary of State John Kerry said “the world needs to hear that the United States speaks with one voice in the fight against ISIL” by passing Obama’s AUMF.
“I spent almost thirty years in the Senate. I care about the institution and I particularly respect the voice that Congress can and should have on foreign policy and national security. This is a moment where Congress can make it clear all over the world that no matter differences on certain issues, at home we’re absolutely united and determined in defeating ISIL. I meet and talk with many of my former colleagues. I know how committed they are to getting this right,” Kerry said. “I also know from talking with so many Foreign Ministers all over the world that they study our debates here at home, and these public signals matter to them. The coalition itself will be stronger with passage of this AUMF.”
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said passage “would provide an important signal of support to DoD personnel, of commitment to our partners, and of resolve to ISIL.”
“The president’s draft language reflects important input from Congress, and would give our personnel the support and flexibility needed in our military operations against ISIL. The Department of Defense will continue to work with members of Congress to secure this resolution,” Hagel said. “Given the nature of our adversary and the complexity of our ongoing campaign, I urge Congress to avoid any undue restraints on the commander-in-chief’s choices in the effort to degrade and ultimately defeat ISIL.”
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said it’s “certainly in order for Congress to debate an authorization like this.”
“And because Congress must meet its responsibility to decide whether our military should use force, the Senate will review the president’s request thoughtfully,” he said. “Individual Senators and committees of jurisdiction will review it carefully, and they’ll listen closely to the advice of military commanders as they consider the best strategy for defeating ISIL.”
McConnell noted that the Republican Conference would meet on the proposal in a discussion led by Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) and Armed Services Committee Chairman John McCain (R-Ariz.).
House Armed Services Committee Chairman Mac Thornberry (R-Texas) said he has concerns “about how the proposal the president has put forward will enable our military commanders to degrade and defeat ISIL.”
“In making his request months after military action against ISIL has started, the president must tell the American people why an AUMF is necessary. He must explain his strategy for success. He must detail where the resources will come from to achieve that success. He must explain how the military can operate within the restrictions he has suggested. And he should explain why he is seeking to tie his own hands by limiting authority that he’s already claimed,” Thornberry said.
“He must also assure the American people and our allies around the world that his heart is in the fight. And the Congress must uphold its Constitutional obligations as a separate branch of government with vital responsibilities to defend the American people against a bitter enemy.”
Sen. Chris Coons (D-Del.) had an amendment in a different AUMF before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in December that would require “any funds made available for activities authorized by this joint resolution should be fully offset through reduced spending, increased revenue, or both.”
“We cannot write another blank check for war,” Coons said. “Paying for war is not only fiscally, but also morally, responsible. It’s not right to expect our troops and their families to be the only people to sacrifice. It is the duty of the Congress, as we debate the scope and strategy for this conflict, to also look squarely at its cost and how to pay for it.”
This one has to be read to be believed. In the pages of the New York Times, apparatchik/cheerleader Nate Cohn lays out the coming line of attack:
Just a few years ago, one could be forgiven for wondering whether the liberal agenda had run its course. With near-universal health care — the unfinished business of the 20th-century Democratic Party — enacted, there was no obvious next step in the party’s mission of expanding the safety net. The big Democratic policies yet to be fully addressed, like immigration overhaul and restrictions on carbon emissions, pitted the party’s new progressive constituencies against its traditional, white working-class base.
Yet in the months after last year’s midterm elections, a reinvigorated liberal agenda has started to emerge. Few of the pieces of this agenda were discussed in the 2012 presidential elections or last year’s midterms. But they have rapidly moved from various liberal intellectual publications into President Obama’s speeches and budget, as well as Hillary Clinton’s speeches.
The emerging Democratic agenda is meant to appeal to parents. The policies under discussion — paid family leave; universal preschool; an expanded earned-income tax credit and child tax credit; free community college and perhaps free four-year college in time — are intended both to alleviate the burdens on middle-class families and to expand educational opportunity for children. The result is a thematic platform addressing some of the biggest sources of anxiety about the future of the middle class.
Read that last paragraph again. What Cohn is saying is that the way to help the “middle class” is essentially to put them on a new welfare scheme that subsidizes their lifestyles. Free!
The emerging Democratic agenda is meant to appeal to parents. The policies under discussion — paid family leave; universal preschool; an expanded earned-income tax credit and child tax credit; free community college and perhaps free four-year college in time — are intended both to alleviate the burdens on middle-class families and to expand educational opportunity for children. The result is a thematic platform addressing some of the biggest sources of anxiety about the future of the middle class.
It’s far too early to know how these themes will resonate with voters, or even the extent to which Mrs. Clinton will emphasize this agenda, but it does have the potential to give the Democrats a more coherent message for the middle class than the party had in 2014 or even 2012.
“Service journalism” at its finest! And you just know the lefties at the Times just love servicing the Democrats.
O’Reilly has always hated the Internet, bloggers and new media, so this isn’t surprising. However, cable news isn’t exactly viewing the world from lofty moral high ground. What’s interesting is his rationale for Williams’ behavior-essentially that news people want to look cool when they come on talk shows so they embellish.
To be fair to Vox, even the most experienced White House reporters can be undone by the president in interviews. Bill O’Reilly of Fox News Channel, for one, has failed to puncture the White House shield in his “exclusive” Obama interviews. Presidents, after all, are playing on their home courts, where they set the rules and control the shot clock. A president is too well-briefed by his staff to be caught off guard by ingenious questions. No president will allow news to be made in an interview unless he wants to make news. Also, etiquette dictates that reporters not interrupt the president whenever he drones on like a slow leak out of a monster truck tire, which Obama does with Vox, at one point filibustering for 750 words—almost as long as this column!—in response to a shapeless labor question posed by Yglesias. An interview with the president may add to a journalist’s prestige, but, like White House briefings, it’s an empty ritual.
But that’s not what bothers me about the Vox interview. Here, for me, is the real rub:
In the example of Klein and Yglesias, they’re less interested in interviewing Obama than they are in explaining his policies. Again and again, they serve him softball—no, make that Nerf ball—questions and then insert infographics and footnotes that help advance White House positions. Vox has lavished such spectacular production values on the video version of the Obama interview—swirling graphics and illustrations, background music (background music!?), aggressive editing, multiple camera angles—that the clips end up looking and sounding like extended commercials for the Obama-in-2016 campaign. I’ve seen subtler Scientology recruitment films.
This, of course, is not surprising as Klein and Yglesias are two of the president’s biggest new media fan boys, although the former has had some lucid moments regarding the realities of Obamacare. This was more like a Tiger Beat interview with Leif Garrett in 1978 than any attempt at real journalism. The YouTube interview with the woman who eats cereal from the bathtub wasn’t any less silly than this fawning effort from Klein and Yglesias.
In the months leading up to the 2012 election, President Obama only granted interviews to local outlets or variety show hosts. He was mocked for this by many Republicans but it turned out to have been a pretty sound strategy. The casual voters who don’t consume political news 24/7 are found watching talk shows, not cable news. He doesn’t need the votes now, yet he still is going for appearances with puppy-eyed hero worshipers. It seems as if he is attempting to pre-game the eventual writing of his legacy, hence the “explaining” that Shafer talks about in the article.
He may get some short-term mileage out of this approach, but we have to hope that historians of the future won’t be using Matt Yglesias for much source material.
A news division that’s reeling might want to get out of the low-info leftist opinion pimping business and work a bit on some actual reporting. This is nothing more than Savannah Guthrie earning her good little lapdog cred by keeping a tired lie alive. Let us also remember that David Axelrod couldn’t tell the truth if the lives of everyone he loved were on the line.
Canadian liberals have always been jealous of their American comrades for getting all the “cool” history, like the civil rights movement and Watergate.
But at least those two things really happened (if not always quite the way they’ve been reported).
In a new low, left-wing Canucks are now whining that our campus rape stats aren’t as high as America’s (aren’t, actually.)
Sex assault reporting on Canadian campuses worryingly low, say experts
Has the CBC hired that disgraced Rolling Stone rape beat reporter or something?
Ha! Show’s what you know. At a cost to taxpayers of over $1 billion a year, the CBC is perfectly capable of screwing up their own narrative all by themselves, thanks.
As they permit one of the libeled universities in this “study” to point out:
The CBC has chosen to ignore the flaws inherent in its research in an effort to present comparative data with no relevance to many of the universities in its survey sample. Presenting comparative data on a per 10,000 student basis has no relevance for a university campus with only 3,500 full time students unless it is a deliberate effort by reporters to sensationalize an otherwise extraordinarily important and complex issue.
Even commie pinko Ryerson “University,” which has never seen a “progressive” fad it didn’t like, suddenly doesn’t believe in a “campus rape epidemic” anymore. At least, not at their campus!
At Ryerson University, which is situated in downtown Toronto, 57 assaults were reported to the university between 2009 and 2013. In 2013, Ryerson had a full-time student population of almost 24,000.
“Regarding the data, unfortunately, there is little consistency in how Canadian post-secondary institutions collect and report sexual assault data,” the university told CBC News in a statement. “[At Ryerson] we also collect data that includes non-community members reporting incidents that have happened within our precinct, which extends over a large area of downtown Toronto.”
A likely story, Ry-High. What were you wearing?
Now hurry up and get yourselves raped, young ladies.
Don’t let math be the only thing hard around here!
We need to get those stats up, stat!
Oh for the days when music was about music. Perhaps that hasn’t truly existed since the pioneers strummed banjos on their front porches, but hey we can dream. Anything is better than the farce dished out at this year’s Grammy Awards by the likes of sinner-turned-saints Katy Perry and Queen Bey and the Grand Poobah of Liars Barack Obama. Kanye was still Kanye, terrorizing the stage with his unwanted opinions, but at least he’s being true to his Messiah complex. The rest of them cracked open the Eau de Hypocrisie in their SWAG bags way too early.
On the Sunday night preceding the release of Fifty Shades of Grey in movie theaters nation-wide, the music industry famous for turning women into greased-up, slimmed-down sex objects suddenly decided it gave a damn about sexual assault. Not because they really do, but because sexual assault sells. Just ask Lena Dunham and that chick who lugs a mattress around Columbia U. Autism replaced AIDS and now that we’ve decided vaccines aren’t an assault on our children we’ve turned our collective head and trumped up statistics towards sexual assault.
Big Brother Barry broke into the awards show to lacquer us with the false 1 in 5 narrative before commanding us to hashtag our support for the White House’s campaign against sexual assault on campus. Cue “domestic violence activist” testimony neatly leading into a performance of “By the Grace of God” by Katy Perry sans beach-ball bikini and shark dancers. Beyonce, far from the wet, lap-dancing prostitute of last year, appeared in angelic white garb to sing “Precious Lord, Take My Hand” for the show’s holiest of finales. Pop-meets-penance, it was a spectacle worthy of a holy institution. The only thing missing was Steve Martin in his sparkling jacket promising to heal us all, at least the straight men, of their demon sexuality.
Prior to this tent revival escapade, Madonna touched on the music industry’s pagan affair with lusty sexuality in her trademark style. Clad as a matador, men dressed as faceless bulls with Satanic horns danced around her while she declared her ability to rise up (via harness, apparently) and “live for love” despite being “knocked down” by previous lovers. Lyrically she hasn’t generated anything unique since the ’80s and the techno-pop beat was more worthy of Cher or Kylie Minogue than Madonna at her most innovative. But her visual style paid homage to the reality of a Hollywood soaked in bizarre, painful sex and enjoying it thoroughly.
Were honest statistics and less theatrics used in addressing the real issue of sexual violence, the Grammys would have seemed more authentic and less like damage control following Rolling Stone‘s massive faux pas when it came to reporting on the campus rape epidemic that isn’t. When Perry and Bey quit getting naked on their knees, call me. Until then, regardless of how many layers of white they wear they’re just dancing in the shadow of Madonna, the music industry’s reigning pagan priestess.
(h/t Hot Air)
Former “NBC Nightly News” anchor Tom Brokaw pushed back Friday against reports that he wants his embattled successor, Brian Williams, to be fired for falsely claiming to have been aboard a helicopter that came under rocket-propelled grenade fire in Iraq.
“I have neither demanded nor suggested Brian be fired,” Brokaw said in an email to The Huffington Post. “His future is up to Brian and NBC News executives.”
The New York Post on Thursday quoted an NBC source who said Brokaw wanted Williams’ “head on a platter” and had suggested a more junior employee would have been fired or suspended.
CNN’s Brian Stelter said his reporting inside NBC had backed up the Post’s assertion that Brokaw is “furious” over the incident.
While Brokaw may not have asked for Williams to be punished over the incident, he didn’t defend his colleague in his statement to HuffPost the way former “CBS Evening News” anchor Dan Rather did a day earlier.
Rather, who was embroiled in his own media scandal, said Thursday that Williams “is an honest, decent man, an excellent reporter and anchor — and a brave one. I can attest that — like his predecessor Tom Brokaw — he is a superb pro, and a gutsy one.”
When the “sources” reports hit the news last night many were speculating whether NBC brass were behind them and providing cover for themselves should they move against Williams. As is always the case with reporting based entirely upon anonymous sources, however, the stories are easy to deny. That Brokaw didn’t take the opportunity give even a tepid endorsement to Williams is probably a sign that things are shaky for the news anchor.
A ringing endorsement from Rather about honesty is laughable, of course, but it shows that he still doesn’t think he did anything wrong.
That’s really the problem here.
Given that Scott Walker won three elections in four years with Big Labor throwing everything they had at him, it would seem that the people of Wisconsin disagree with Dr. ScreamyPants. As we pointed out yesterday, MSNBC’s ratings are in the midst of a Titanic impression. This clip is indicative of why. Dean is, and always has been, a screeching loon. He often says things that obviously aren’t reality-based.
And he’s revered at MSNBC.
Want to see Obama’s 2008 campaign in a nutshell? Check out the young political activists recruited by the V-2015 campaign to elect “anyone but Netanyahu.” If you thought the “anyone but” goal was vague, try listening to their platform. Count how many times “hope and change” is repeated and remind yourselves that this is what got an American president elected — twice.
Dear God, let Israelis be smarter than us. With the polls neck-in-neck between Bibi’s Likud and the Livni/Labor “Zionist Camp” mashup, it’s questionable exactly how much impact the V15 campaign stands to have on the Israeli electorate. Likud came out swinging at V15, accusing the group of backing the Labor Zionist Camp. The accusation was later apologized for by Bibi’s lawyer, but that doesn’t leave lawmakers on this side of the ocean are without due cause to question Obama about V15′s involvement in the Israeli elections. Haaretz reports, “Two Republican lawmakers asked the Obama administration to explain OneVoice’s involvement in the election, given that it has received State Department funding.”
Anyone wishing to understand the Zionist Camp would be remiss to ignore Liel Leibovitz’s excellent analysis over at Tablet magazine:
Why, then, go to all this trouble to reclaim the ancient ideology? Why not just run, as generations of Labor leaders have in the past, as purveyors of new hopes rather than old ideas? In part, it’s because doing so would require Labor to state just how it distinguishes itself from Likud when it comes to safeguarding Israel’s security, a question that, in light of the Palestinian reluctance to engage in good-faith negotiations, is growing more and more difficult to answer. Livni herself was Prime Minister Netanyahu’s chief peace negotiator and was in agreement with the government’s policies on everything from the John Kerry peace initiative to last summer’s war in Gaza. She and her new partners in Labor can hardly claim to have an agenda that provides new answers to the tough questions of war and peace Israelis face each day. Instead of looking to the future, then, Labor is gazing longingly at the past.
That doesn’t sound like very much “hope n’change” to me.
Senate Democrats again blocked Republicans’ attempt Wednesday to bring up a funding bill for the
Department of Homeland Security — filibustering the legislation over provisions that would unravel President Barack Obama’s executive actions on immigration.
The vote was 53-47.
The Senate had reached the same outcome on a procedural vote on the same bill Tuesday, and the situation is expected to play out again this week — quite apropos in the days after Groundhog Day.
Senate Republicans plan to force the minority to block the bill multiple times, and they slammed Democrats for refusing to let the chamber even take up the DHS funding measure so changes more to their liking could be considered.
The pathetically predictable MSM isn’t wasting any time running interference for the Democrats. In the years that the Dems had the Senate majority, it was always the fault of the Republicans if they blocked a bill. No mention whatsoever was made of what language the majority may have added to a bill to make it objectionable to the GOP. In fact, the Harry Reid brigade would often simply not let things come up for a vote and the Republicans were blamed for that too.
Here is hoping that leadership remains aware of the fact that they’ll never get a break in the media and act accordingly.
When President Obama was reelected in 2012, MSNBC was “leaning forward” and smiling wide as Obama 2.0 propelled it to record ratings and a firm grasp on the No. 2 spot in cable news.
Over two years later, the network has fallen backwards. January ratings revealed double-digit declines compared with January, 2014 in all ratings measurements. During the day, MSNBC was down 20 percent in viewers and 37 percent in the advertising-coveted 25-54 demo. In primetime, it fell 23 percent in viewers and 39 percent in demo.
Network President Phil Griffin knows MSNBC needs to turn those numbers around quickly, and multiple insiders tell TheWrap Griffin is in the process of deciding what potential changes to make, including tinkering with primetime.
One well-placed insider told TheWrap that the ratings-challenged “All In” with Chris Hayes — airing in the cable news sweet spot of 8 p.m. ET — might get uprooted for a different timeslot. It’s not clear who will replace Hayes in the event that he gets yanked from 8 p.m., but since Keith Olbermann’s 2011 exit, MSNBC has filled the all-important timeslot with internal talent rather than seeking hosts from the outside.
MSNBC is a lot like the current administration it so admires: every time someone awful leaves, someone worse is found as a replacement.
A key component in its struggle is the fact that the network’s executives and on-air talent are blissfully unaware of the fact that progressivism is still a fringe ideology in America. The little bump they enjoyed was due to a combination of the unsustainable emotional high of the early Obama years and the CNN’s floundering. CNN may not be what it was twenty years ago, but it has made some slight improvements in the past couple of years.
Jeff Zucker seems genuinely interested in restoring the CNN brand, while Phil Griffin seems to be merely creating programming that he and his friends enjoy:
MSNBC’s other programming problem appears to be Griffin himself, whom multiple insiders told TheWrap is too attached to the hosts he’s selected and the shows they’ve developed, including Farrow, Reid, Hayes and Alex Wagner, who hosts “Now” at 4 p.m. ET.
That this niche network is still supported by the parent company is also indicative of just how left-leaning NBC as a whole is.
Over at the New York Times, gender feminist Sally Kohn chronicles her recent experience taking her five-year-old, princess-obsessed daughter to Disney World for her birthday. To read her account of the event, you’d presume the mother would’ve rather experienced a root canal without anesthesia than be forced to spend quality time celebrating her daughter’s birth. Every choice her five year old made, from wearing dresses to having her hair done at the Bippity-Boppity Boutique, drew nothing more than a cringe from her self-described “tomboy” mother, who whined and moaned through the article, oddly enough, like someone her daughter’s age:
I don’t know how it is that in the modern era, I still can’t get decent reception on my cellphone but somehow traditional gender norms are silently communicated and crystal clear. My partner and I certainly didn’t teach our daughter to like pink and ruffles and such. And I can’t fathom some genetic or biological nodule that predisposes my girl to like dolls while little boys like trucks. Baloney. But somehow, even in the midst of our hyper-liberal and hyper-diverse neighborhood with girls and boys of all kinds on display every day, it happened. Did I do something wrong? Is feminism mysteriously skipping a generation? Meanwhile, I have to bribe her to wear jeans.
People say it’s a phase and not to resist it or else Willa will just dig in longer.
If you’re looking for the loving, supportive parenting and expressions of affirmation and joy a mother would normally take in a child, you’ll need to scroll down to the end of the article to find the reason for the praise:
“But you’ll have to wait awhile to marry your prince,” one Fairy Godmother says to Willa.
“No,” Willa replies. “I don’t have to marry a prince if I don’t want to. I could marry another princess. Or I don’t even have to get married.”
The Fairy Godmothers-in-Training are momentarily speechless. And then, one by one, they start to applaud. One even pumps her fist in the air. Feminism didn’t skip my daughter, it was just hiding underneath all that pink and glitter.
Glad to know Komrade Mommy eventually did reward her good little Fem-bot. Even if it did mean stealing her tiara out from underneath her, the self-aggrandizing theft was done in the spirit of wanting “to be just like” her well-trained daughter. God help little Willa if she ever dares to make a decision of her own. That’s clearly not in Mommy’s gender feminism handbook.
Regular readers already know I’m a “Carolla-tard” (as Marc Maron dubbed us).
And I’ve written elsewhere that downloads of Dennis Miller’s radio show helped me survive my last cubicle job.
So I’m primed to enjoy a podcast co-hosted by both comedians.
The podcast is already #2 on the iTunes chart.
The first episode, below, saw Miller and Carolla getting to know each other a little better, and prepping listeners for what to expect in the weeks to come.
Given their great chemistry (and spectacular guest contact lists), this could shape up to be the next great comedy podcast, especially in a field crowded with boring lefties. (See, Marc Maron, above.)
You can subscribe free via iTunes or PodcastOne.
Hat Tip: Grabien
When it comes to our relationship with the Islamic world, even well-known liberals are starting to wonder what the Obama administration is trying to get at. During a recent appearance on the Late Show with David Letterman, MSNBC pundit Rachel Maddow chatted with the renowned host on the state visit to honor the late Saudi king. Both personalities were puzzled at America’s strange relationship with an obvious ideological enemy, with Maddow commenting, “The list of people who they sent… I mean, it’s amazing that we weren’t there! …They went way down the list of people you’ve ever heard of in the pages of foreign policy. Everybody!”
Maddow and Letterman raise a good point. Saudi Arabia was the fountain for Sunni Jihad, Iran was the fountain for Shi’ite Jihad. Both strains of Islam harbor a virulent hatred for each other that is currently playing itself out in the Sunni-backed ISIS revolution against Shi’ite-dominated governments. It seems that the only thing the two Islamic parties can agree on is their hatred of the Jews and, by virtue of their Biblical relationship with Jews, Christians. So, what are the leaders of a traditionally Judeo-Christian nation doing sucking up to the Sunni powerhouse of the Middle East?
Historically speaking, Saudi Arabia is the West’s creation, Brit T.E. Lawrence’s romantic notions carved into a losing deal with the Saud family exactly 100 years ago this year. As with any other regime, moral disagreements have been set aside over the generations in favor of political alliances, economic deal making, and a lot of bowing to the student on behalf of the supposed master. Moralists outraged by social media evidence of Sunni Islam’s humanitarian crisis playing out in Saudi Arabia have less sway over ending America’s “creepy, totally dependent” relationship with the kingdom (as Maddow dubbed it) than do the changing dynamics in the oil industry. It would seem that very little has changed in a century.
After all, this wouldn’t be the first time celebrities used their star power to address ideological threats abroad. Hollywood’s stars spoke out against Nazism in the late 1930s and were warned to shut up by FDR’s lackey, lest they be blamed for antagonizing us into an unnecessary war. So, when two of the most liberal pop personalities begin questioning America’s moral imperative in the Middle East, how far will they get? Will we see Maddow, Letterman or the like championing the cause of Christopher Cramer, the U.S. defense subcontractor who mysteriously died last month while working for Israel’s Elbit Systems in Saudi Arabia? Or will he be yet another forgotten casualty in the Obama administration’s defense in the War on Muslims?
Investigative journalist Sharyl Attkisson, speaking at Hillsdale College’s Center for Constructive Alternatives, weighed in on President Obama’s decision to sit down to an interview with YouTube star GloZell.
Attkisson spoke on the topic of “Investigative Journalism and the Obama Administration” and was asked during the Q & A about Obama’s GloZell interview. “The president did an interview with an online blogger — a young woman with bright green lipstick,” an audience member said. “It was heralded by some as a new era of journalism. What do you think this administration’s target audiences are for their release of information?” he asked.
Attkisson said she doesn’t have a problem with Obama “doing that sort of thing.” But she said the administration has “perfected the idea of going around neutral news reporters who would ask critical questions.”
“My only problem would be if they do that instead of also being answerable to those who could ask the tough and probing and challenging questions and hold them accountable on behalf of the public,” she said. “And I think sometimes they do more of that social media and fun stuff and entertainment and celebrity stuff.”
She noted that the “fun stuff” does reach a certain audience “because that’s how some people get their news,” but said that the Obama administration is not asked critical questions on controversial topics during these interviews, which are not conducted by “informed interviewers.” Attkisson said, “Doing that instead of doing more of the other kind I see as a problem because I’m a traditional journalist. But I don’t have a problem with them doing that if they want to do it — in addition to.”
You can watch Attkisson’s speech in its entirety below:
This number is awful in light of what economists expected but pretty much par for the course in recent years. The good news always brings hope for some sustainable growth but is followed by “unexpected” bad news. The lapdog media faithfully dig for nuggets of hope, though.