Tag Archives: ABC

Barbara Walters Heaven Special Includes Token Atheist Response

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screencap of Ellen Johnson and Barbara Walters
Ellen Johnson and Barbara Walters

The July 6th special 20/20 episode all about “Heaven” gave about 2 minutes and 30 seconds for the atheist view. Even though it was a token amount, it was more time than I thought they would give to non-believers.
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The Ultimate Guide to the Political Talk Shows

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I am sick and tired. I have tried to watch them but I can’t stand it any more. They are hurting the political discourse in this country and outside the wonks who live and breathe politics, they have no relationship with average people. I’m talking about political talk shows. Here is the ultimate guide so you never have to watch them again.

I should clarify one point. The shows and the news in general on the broadcast networks have an effect on average people more than those on cable but all of them still are pretty much worthless unless you obsess about politics.

Ultimate Political Talk Show Guide

1. The shows covered under this guide is as follows:

ABC This Week
CBS Face the Nation with Bob Schieffer
Fox Fox News Sunday w/ Chris Wallace
NBC Meet the Press with David Gregory
PBS The McLaughlin Group

Cable
CNN State of the Union with Candy Crowley
CNN Reliable Sources
MSNBC The Ed Show
MSNBC Countdown w/ Keith Olbermann
MSNBC The Rachel Maddow Show
FOXNEWS Any show at any hour

2. Formats are pretty much the same in that they allow for unquestioning press release spin

3 Except for the MSNBC shows, the spin is at least misleading and in most cases lies.

4. Again except for the MSNBC shows, the hosts never really ask follow up questions.

5. The shows all have the same guests and those guests lean toward the GOP with a token Democrat in some cases. Again MSNBC is the opposite – having mostly Democratic or left leaning guests but the GOP rarely appears on MSNBC shows even as tokens.

6. MSNBC shows are better because they at least stick with facts and the truth even when it looks bad for Democrats and liberals in general. The other shows “concern troll” for the Democrats on all topics and accept the GOP talking points as true on their face.

7. The hosts and/or guests on any FOX “News” shows are either stupid, racists, or both at the same time.

8. All shows tend to have stories and topics that are important only to those who live inside the Washington DC beltway. Occasionally, most likely the MSNBC shows will actually have a topic of importance to all Americans.

9. Most of these shows favor “drama” over substance where yelling and arguing is seen as “good”, except for Countdown w/ Keith Olbermann, and The Rachel Maddow Show. Or they obsess on the political process which is like watching sausage being made.

10. You don’t have to watch any of the shows live or on your DVR. You can go to the network websites and watch clips, watch the Daily Show and Colbert Report to get a funny take on what the shows have on, or visit these websites:

http://crooksandliars.com/

http://www.talkingpointsmemo.com/

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/

and for special handling of FOX “News” crap:

http://mediamatters.org/

11. Although it seems some shows might be better than the others, at the end of the day you don’t need to watch them to keep yourself informed. They take up time better spent with friends and family and laughing and having fun.

More on the incestuous nature of mainstream media

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Many years ago there was a movie out called “They Live” Aliens had taken over the Earth and to keep the humans under control they used different means like camouflage and subliminal propaganda to mask their presence. The hero of the movie is given some special sun glasses that allows him to see the aliens and all the propaganda that wasn’t seen by the naked eye. He joins the resistance and fights the aliens. I tend to see the current mainstream media – the news programs on NBC, CBS, ABC, and Fox networks as similar to the aliens and I wish I could give everyone sun glasses so they could see it too.

I have written many times about the incestuous relationship between the talking heads on news shows like Meet the Press, This Week, State of the Union, Fox Sunday, and the like. Regular “Joe the Plumber” conservatives cry about a liberal bias in the news yet these shows have no liberal bias. These shows tend to lean right or center right as the same people are on every week.

They are allowed to make any kind of statement they want – even if it is a lie – and the hosts or moderator don’t challenge them about it. Also, even though the programs claims to be discussion shows, little is discussed. The networks seem to think that all policy views are equal and have a pro and con side while at the same time stacking the deck in favor of the party currently out of power – the GOP.

Blogger driftglass had an excellent post about this:

because George W. Bush’s codpiece was an Invincible Christian Peace Shield that would keep us all safe from the scary brown foreigners forever.

We were right. About everything.

They were wrong — tragically, catastrophically, completely wrong. About everything.

And yet they still are on the Inside. Sleek and prosperous.

While we still fight for scraps on the Outside.

On “Meet the Press”

A rich guy and his wife talked about giving.

And Reverend Rick Warren said “I’ve spoken at Davos many times…”

And then I turned the channel.

On “This Week” Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) used his one appearance on national teevee to cock-punch Senator Lindsey Graham (R-John McCain’s underwear drawer) during his 355th such appearance.

The Roundtable consisted of one liberal — Paul Krugman — and four members-in-good-standing of the Conservative/Beltway Insider Axis; Matthew Dowd, George Will, Cokie Roberts and Dan Senor, who, if you didn’t know (because they didn’t mention it) was, among other things, Deputy to Bush White House Spokesliar Scott McClellan

[Senor] currently draws a paycheck playing pundit for…wait for it…Fox News, and completed the Beltway Insider circle of life by marrying CNN on-air personality Campbell Brown in 2006.

Yesterday he was brought on camera to share his infinite wisdom on the subject of foreign policy, because who on Earth could possibly be more credible and qualified? Except maybe Dick Cheney’s daughter?

Sunday Morning Comin’ Down

That’s why I refuse to watch those news programs and yesterday when President Obama gave his Afghanistan speech I turned off the analysis programs that followed.

The best part of driftglasses post is the final bit that had some Fox talking heads complaining about the recently man and woman who crashed the state dinner:

Yes, that’s right: the degenerate sons of Mike Wallace and Irvin Kristol…
…sitting on the set of their fake news show…
…lavishly adorned with blonde Fox news bimbos…
…and collecting the paychecks for telling lies to stupid people…

Are pretending to be stunned that American culture has grown so sick that some fortune-seeking, second-generation, spoiled rich twat of a con artist…
…would use his contacts and blond arm-candy…
…to break the last, sacred seal — the rules of Beltway party-going…
…to get his own teevee show.

The horror.

The horror.

Yes indeed – the horror…

Beyond the basic who, what, where, when, and how of news journalism on your 6 and 11 PM newscast, you are being mislead and not getting the truth. Just stop watching those shows or listening to what passes as news analysis in this country.

TV Networks have very short memory

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John Amato points out on Crooks and Liars that since the election, the Sunday talk shows have returned to the usual conservative bias:

It’s no coincidence that right wing/Conservative guests far outnumber the left wing guests this week on the Sunday talkers. The country just rejected Conservatives and the entire GOP and gave Obama a complete mandate, but does that matter to the networks?

Atrios:

Highlighted this before, but on the teevee on Sunday we have:

7 Appearances by Republican current elected officeholders
3 Appearances by Democratic current elected officeholders.
2 Appearances by Republican former elected officeholders.
1 Appearance by a Bush Cabinet Secretary.
T. Boone Pickens
Ted Turner.

Right Wingers dominate the Sunday Talk Shows

So now we not only have the “how does this hurt Democrats” but now add “How does this help the GOP…”

(sigh)

That’s why I refuse to watch the Sunday Talk shows. Same old same old.

Why I hate the mainstream media

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Ever since the mega corporations took over the main stream media networks, there has been a lack of journalism on them. Outside the celeb-centric, missing white woman, serial killer style tabloid style, the networks have stopped being an advocate of the public. Nowadays, the news, especially the cable talk shows are nothing more than press releases read on the air. There is no follow up, no questioning of what is said. The flacks on the shows are allowed to say their version and we are suppose to believe the “journalists” are being fair and balanced.

That is a bunch of BS.

If someone lies, or gives knowingly false information, it is the duty of the host to call the person on it right away. Facts are not opinions to be debated. They are either true or false.

Here is an example:

The New York Times’ John Harwood wrote that Gov. Sarah Palin “assert[ed] that” Sen. Barack Obama’s “relationship with Bill Ayers, the onetime Weather Underground figure, constitutes ‘palling around with terrorists.’ ” But Harwood did not mention that two days earlier, in an article that Palin herself referenced, the Times itself reported that “the two men do not appear to have been close. Nor has Mr. Obama ever expressed sympathy for the radical views and actions of Mr. Ayers.”

NY Times’ Harwood quotes Palin’s “palling around with terrorists” claim, but not Times’ own reporting otherwise

or this one

CNN’s Kiran Chetry failed to challenge a McCain campaign adviser’s criticism of Sen. Barack Obama for “claim[ing] that the American military was just air-raiding villages and bombing civilians” in Afghanistan, even though Chetry herself has reported that Defense Secretary Robert Gates has offered “personal regret[s]” to Afghanistan over air strikes that killed civilians.

CNN’s Chetry did not challenge McCain adviser’s misleading attack on Obama’s Afghanistan comments

or this:

On Morning Joe, host Joe Scarborough did not challenge Sen. John McCain’s false assertion that Gen. Dwight Eisenhower wrote “a letter of resignation from the Army” in case the D-Day invasion failed, a claim that McCain also made during the September 26 presidential debate.

Scarborough did not challenge McCain’s false claim

And this one that just pissed me off:

On the September 28 edition of NBC’s Meet the Press, during his interview with McCain campaign senior adviser Steve Schmidt and Obama campaign chief strategist David Axelrod, host Tom Brokaw did not challenge Schmidt’s false assertion that Sen. John McCain “called for the firing of Don Rumsfeld” as Defense secretary. As Media Matters for America has repeatedly documented, and the McCain campaign reportedly admitted, McCain did not call for Rumsfeld’s dismissal.

Rather than noting the established facts debunking Schmidt’s claim, Brokaw concluded the interview by stating, “In fairness to everybody here, I’m just going to end on one note,” then cited the results of a poll question favorable to McCain.

Brokaw allowed McCain adviser to falsely claim McCain “called for the firing of Don Rumsfeld”

Brokaw not only didn’t call Steve Schmidt on the lie he told, he also quoted an old poll about a question no other national poll asks just because it was favorable to McCain. There is also information that Brokaw has been talking behind the scenes with the McCain campaign which included getting Keith Olberman and Chris Matthews removed from anchoring further MSNBC political events.

Yes, the same Tom Brokaw who is moderating the October 7th Presidential Debate in Nashville.