Posted tagged ‘Media and Hillary Clinton’

When President Obama’s National Security Advisor Lied, The Media Laughed

February 17, 2017

When President Obama’s National Security Advisor Lied, The Media Laughed, The Federalist, February 17, 2017

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Sometimes the hypocrisy, double standard, and outright lies by the media under the Trump presidency is funny. Sometimes it is infuriating. But never was the media’s complicit sheep-like coverage more evident than it the days after Benghazi, behavior you can never imagine now. They have yet to admit their mistakes and failures, even as more evidence is revealed.

Remember that the next time you want to worry about how Trump is responsible for undermining the media’s integrity and credibility.

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Buried deep beneath the Michael Flynn hysteria this week was Judicial Watch’s release of newly obtained State Department documents related to the Benghazi terrorist attack on September 11, 2012. One email confirms—again—that the Obama administration knew the day after the attack it was not a random act of violence stemming from an anti-Muslim video. That was the excuse shamefully propagated by top Obama administration officials (including the president himself) and swallowed whole by a media establishment desperate to help Obama win re-election six weeks later.

According to the summary of a call on September 12, 2012 between State Department Under-Secretary Patrick Kennedy and several congressional staffers, Kennedy was asked if the attack came under cover of protest: “No this was a direct breaching attack,” he answered. Kennedy also denied the attack was coordinated with the protests in Cairo over the video: “Attack in Cairo was a demonstration. There were no weapons shown or used. A few cans of spray paint.”

It’s somewhat ironic—galling?—that this email was disclosed the same day the anti-Trump universe was spinning into the stratosphere over Flynn’s resignation as President Trump’s national security advisor. It begs for a little trip down memory lane, to a kinder, gentler time when the media gave a great big pass to another national security advisor in the days after four Americans, including an ambassador, were murdered in Libya by Islamic terrorists under her watch.

Lying to Us Only Matters If We Dislike You

Fun fact: While Trump press secretary Sean Spicer fielded 55 questions on February 14 related to the Flynn debacle, Obama’s press secretary Jay Carney received only 13 questions from reporters on September 12, 2012, three of which were set-ups to blast Mitt Romney’s criticism of the administration after the attack. 55 to 13.

So as we now suffer through yet another patch of media mania, conspiracy theories, and unsubstantiated claims about how Trump hearts Russia, as well as the daily beatings endured by Spicer, let’s reminisce to when the media and Obama’s press flaks spun, deflected—even joked about golf and “Saturday Night Live!”—less than a week after Benghazi.

The day after Hillary Clinton’s deputy had that call with key Capitol Hill staffers, including advisors to senators Durbin, Feinstein, and McGaskill, to dispute the notion the attack was about an anti-Muslim video, here’s what Carney said: “I think it’s important to note with regards to that protest that there are protests taking place in different countries across the world that are responding to the movie that has circulated on the Internet. As Secretary Clinton said today, the United States government had nothing to do with this movie. We reject its message and its contents. We find it disgusting and reprehensible.”

On September 14, hours before the remains of the Benghazi victims would arrive at Andrews Air Force Base, Carney was still blaming the video. Just steps from the Oval Office, Carney opened his briefing with this: “First of all, we are obviously closely monitoring developments in the region today. You saw that following the incidents in response to this video, the president directed the administration to take a number of steps to prepare for continued unrest.”

Carney went on to mention the video/film/movie another 30 times during his briefing. He stuck with his story even after some reporters pushed back, citing other sources who said it was indeed a pre-mediated attack. One reporter said several senators admitted the “attack on Benghazi was a terrorist attack organized and carried out by terrorists, that it was premeditated, a calculated act of terror,” and asked Carney, “is there anything more you can — now that the administration is briefing senators on this, is there anything more you can tell us?”

Carney: “Again, it’s actively under investigation, both the Benghazi attack and incidents elsewhere. And my point was that we don’t have and did not have concrete evidence to suggest that this was not in reaction to the film. But we’re obviously investigating the matter…” Who cares, Sean Spicer called Justin Trudeau Joe, OMG!

Susan Rice’s Audacity of Trope

But of course nothing matches the audacity of trope by Obama’s National Security Advisor Susan Rice on September 16, 2012. Rice went on several Sunday shows to peddle a story she knew was completely phony, one that was already quickly unraveling even as most in the media and administration tried to keep it intact.

You can read most of her comments here, but Rice repeats the line that Benghazi attack was not premediated and was connected to the demonstrations in Cairo over the video (a document obtained by Judicial Watch last year shows Hillary Clinton met with Rice a few days before her television appearances). Which presidential administration is fact-challenged, again?

In a press gaggle on Air Force One the next day, guess how many times Deputy Press Secretary Josh Earnest was asked about Rice’s comments? Ten? Five? One? Not once. Let me repeat that. The day after Obama’s national security advisor was on five news programs to blame a terrorist attack on a YouTube video, not one reporter asked the White House about it. I actually had to re-read the transcripts several times, even checking the date over and over, to make sure this was accurate. Her name did not even come up.

No discussion about the investigation. No discussion about emerging evidence from around the world that Benghazi was indeed a terrorist attack. (The only time it was mentioned was when Jen Psaki criticized Mitt Romney’s comments about how the administration handled Benghazi and questioned whether he was ready for “primetime.”)

Here’s what they did discuss: Debate prep, Occupy Wall Street, and the Chicago’s teachers strike. An actual human reporter asked this: “It was a beautiful weekend for golf and he wasn’t out on the course. Is it safe to assume maybe he was doing some preparation at the White House?” WHAT? Then they joked about football and “Saturday Night Live.”

Sometimes the hypocrisy, double standard, and outright lies by the media under the Trump presidency is funny. Sometimes it is infuriating. But never was the media’s complicit sheep-like coverage more evident than it the days after Benghazi, behavior you can never imagine now. They have yet to admit their mistakes and failures, even as more evidence is revealed.

Remember that the next time you want to worry about how Trump is responsible for undermining the media’s integrity and credibility.

Obama’s White House, 2009: ‘Don’t Pretend’ Fox News Is a ‘Legitimate News Organization’

January 12, 2017

Obama’s White House, 2009: ‘Don’t Pretend’ Fox News Is a ‘Legitimate News Organization’, PJ MediaDavid Steinberg, January 11, 2017

trumpnewsconfPresident-elect Donald Trump speaks during a news conference, Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2017, in New York. The news conference was his first as President-elect. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

Now, here’s a more insightful take: since Obama’s done it since it his first year in office; since Obama went two entire terms without taking more than a handful of questions from any center-right outlet, never mind singling out just one; and since not being one of the lucky dozen or so people out of 300 million Americans who gets to ask the president-elect a question does not infer that your rights have been violated . . . .

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Donald Trump refused to take a question from CNN reporter Jim Acosta today, labeling Acosta’s employer as “fake news.” Since then, mainstream media and celebrities are hyperventilating over Trump as if he bears the same viciously totalitarian impulses as, say, Fidel Castro — and that Trump is SCARY and GOING TO GET THEM.

As comforting as tweeting one’s victimhood status to millions appears to be to today’s left — and as ironic as exercising one’s free speech to millions via Twitter to claim the death of the First Amendment is to everyone else — this reactionary response sure doesn’t look good for the left in terms of ideological consistency.

Or sanity. For example, here’s one-percenter Patton Oswalt, who I’ll assume is tweeting from an in-home hyperbaric chamber:

Did the New York Times fear freedom of the press had been eradicated? No, the headline was simply that “Fox’s Volley With Obama” was … “Intensifying.”

Ironically, current CNN host and Trump critic Brian Stelter wrote the article. It begins:

Attacking the news media is a time-honored White House tactic but to an unusual degree, the Obama administration has narrowed its sights to one specific organization, the Fox News Channel, calling it, in essence, part of the political opposition.

We’re going to treat them the way we would treat an opponent,” said Anita Dunn, the White House communications director, in a telephone interview on Sunday. “As they are undertaking a war against Barack Obama and the White House, we don’t need to pretend that this is the way that legitimate news organizations behave.”

In 2009, the White House’s position on Fox News was that it was “an opponent,” at “war(!)” with the White House. And that they were not, in fact, a legitimate news organization.

They were to be treated as fake news. It was White House policy.

Here’s Chris Cillizza of the Washington Post:

John Harwood of NBC:

Mother Jones:

Media Matters:

Here’s George Takei:

Now, here’s a more insightful take: since Obama’s done it since it his first year in office; since Obama went two entire terms without taking more than a handful of questions from any center-right outlet, never mind singling out just one; and since not being one of the lucky dozen or so people out of 300 million Americans who gets to ask the president-elect a question does not infer that your rights have been violated, this tweeter brings some sanity whether you’re a Trump supporter or not:

Much better.

The Worst of MSNBC in 2016 | SUPERcuts! #408

December 30, 2016

The Worst of MSNBC in 2016 | SUPERcuts! #408, Washington Free Beacon via YouTube, December 30, 2016

The Trump Nail in the Media Coffin

December 22, 2016

The Trump Nail in the Media Coffin, Town HallVictor Davis Hanson, December 22, 2016

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News outlets such as The New York Times and NBC have no more credibility than most websites or the National Enquirer.

Is it any surprise that we are witnessing the funeral for traditional journalism as we once knew it?

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President-elect Donald Trump probably will not often communicate with the nation via traditional press conferences. Nor will Trump likely field many questions from New York/Washington journalists.

What we know as “the media” never imagined a Trump victory. It has become unhinged at the reality of a Trump presidency.

No wonder the fading establishment media is now distrusted by a majority of the public, according to Gallup — and becoming irrelevant even among progressives.

Once upon a time in the 1960s, all the iconic news anchors, from Walter Cronkite to David Brinkley, were liberal. But they at least hid their inherent biases behind a professional veneer that allowed them to filter stories through left-wing lenses without much pushback.

When Cronkite returned from Vietnam after the 1968 Tet Offensive and declared the war stalemated and unwinnable, no one dared to offer the dissenting viewpoint that Tet was actually a decisive American victory.

The mainstream-media narrative in 1963 that Lee Harvey Oswald, the Castroite, communist assassin of President John F. Kennedy, was a product of right-wing Texas hatred was completely crazy — but largely unquestioned.

That old monopoly over the news, despite the advent of cable television and the internet, still lingered until 2016. Even in recent years, Ivy League journalism degrees and well-known media brand names seemed to suggest better reporting than what was offered by bloggers and websites.

Soft-spoken liberal hosts on public TV and radio superficially sounded more news-like than their gravelly-voiced populist counterparts on commercial radio and cable news.

Yet the thinning veneer of circumspection that had supposedly characterized the elite liberal successors to Cronkite and Brinkley was finally ripped off completely by a media meltdown over Trump.

Journalists such as Jim Rutenberg of The New York Times and Christiane Amanpour of CNN said that they could not — and should not — be neutral reporters, given their low opinion of Trump.

When the press is unashamedly slanted, even its benefactors want even more partiality — media heartthrob Barack Obama included.

In his last press conference as president, Obama attacked pet journalists for reporting on WikiLeaks’ release of John Podesta’s emails, supposedly at the expense of his own legacy and Hillary Clinton’s accomplishments.

The WikiLeaks trove certainly proved another disaster to the media — but only because it revealed that mainstream journalists conspired with the Clinton campaign.

CNN’s Donna Brazile leaked possible debate questions to Clinton. One op-ed columnist, Dana Milbank of the Washington Post, even asked Clintonites for research to help him attack Trump.

Politico’s Glenn Thrush sent a story to the Clinton campaign team to be audited before publication. He begged to keep his collusion quiet and admitted that he had become a “hack” for such journalistic impropriety. Thrush may have been rewarded for his predictable left-wing bias, recently being hired by the New York Times as a White House correspondent.

Last week, New York Times op-ed columnist Paul Krugman grotesquely suggested via Twitter that Trump might welcome another 9/11-like attack, given that such a human catastrophe supposedly helped win support for George W. Bush.

Recently, another Politico reporter, Julia Ioffe, used Twitter to relay a news story about the possibility that Trump’s daughter, Ivanka, would get an office at the White House. In her tweet, Joffe suggested that Trump was either having incestuous relations with his daughter or skirting nepotism laws.

Politico fired Ioffe — sort of. She had already announced that she was moving from Politico to the Atlantic.

Yet the Atlantic announced that it would not rescind her hire — suggesting that her political bias, despite the accompanying unprofessionalism and uncouthness, could almost be interpreted as a plus.

In today’s media, all of this progressive distortion serves as an insurance policy for lapses of personal integrity like those of Thrush and Joffe.

MSNBC anchor Brian Williams sermonized about the so-called “fake news” epidemic. Williams failed to remind us that he was removed as NBC’s evening news anchor for serving up all sorts of fake details about his supposedly brave trips abroad in search of edgy news stories.

After the fatal shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, the co-hosts of the show “CNN Newsroom” collectively put up their hands in “hands up, don’t shoot” solidarity — echoing a narrative of police murder later proved to be completely false by a lengthy federal investigation.

Decades-long journalistic one-sidedness was apparently tolerable when there were no other news alternatives. Mainstream-media monopolies once were also highly profitable, and long-ago liberal news people were at least well-mannered.

All of those assumptions are no longer true. News outlets such as The New York Times and NBC have no more credibility than most websites or the National Enquirer.

Is it any surprise that we are witnessing the funeral for traditional journalism as we once knew it?

All the News the Editors See Fit to Print

December 18, 2016

All the News the Editors See Fit to Print, American Thinker, Clarice Feldman, December 18, 2016

Decades ago while in high school I read John Dos Passos’s USA. It was published in the 1930s before television or cable news. But it presaged well the strange mixture of important and ridiculous news we receive today. News today is largely fashioned into narratives by mostly young, unworldly reporters and biased news editors, repeated on TV by well-coiffed, fashionably garbed and cosmetically buffed up news readers, jazzed up by often highly biased photo editors and presented on a plate to passive consumers.

When I read USA, my hometown had — like most larger cities — two major newspapers, one liberal, the other conservative, and like most homes we got both and read both so we had a fairer picture of what was happening in the world. The reporters were often grizzled veterans of the world who drank hard, smoked a lot, and believed no one or nothing without evidence.

With the advent of television and the monopolization of print markets it seems to me we lost the ability to forensically analyze the news; we have become passive consumers and got what we deserved — propaganda, largely megaphoning the increasingly leftward tilt of the Democratic Party and various “nonprofit” organizations who promote scare stories about food, health, and the weather and challenge wars  only when a Republican is in office. To be sure, there are some fine people (operating largely online) who take the time to read the accounts with a critical eye. Among the best are James Taranto of the Wall Street Journal, bloggers Don Surber, Glenn Reynolds, Sheryl Attkisson, and Tom Maguire. If you read them daily you may reacquire this lost, but important art.

This week the clash between fake and real news became even more obvious.

Sharyl Attkisson who has sued the Department of Justice and the U.S. Postal Service for matters relating to intrusions on her computer and who is known for her outstanding reportage, took aim this week at the Obama-Clinton suggestion that Clinton lost because of fake news reports. Obama called “fake news” a “dust cloud of nonsense” and Clinton dubbed it “an epidemic”.

My online friend Matt Holtzmann has some questions about this:

So the president lectured the media and the masses on fake news during his press conference today. Does that include the Journo-List? Does it include enlisting the National Endowment for the Arts to engage in a propaganda campaign for Obamacare? Does it include the video that Hillary Clinton broadcast on Pakistani network television blaming an obscure video? Does it include “if you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor’? Does it include his visits to the fake news shows? [ed: Like the Daily Show and Colbert]

Attkisson herself also weighed in on the issue:

Wednesday on Newsmax TV’s “The Steve Malzberg Show,” while discussing the 2016 presidential election’s fake new controversy, “Full Measure” host Sharyl Attkisson said fake news is a “propaganda campaign” to censor truth started by politicians like President Barack Obama and Clinton ally the founder of Media Matters Democratic operative David Brock.

Attkisson said, “Before about September 13, if you searched the news you won’t find many or any mentions of fake news. But as soon as there was, in my view, a propaganda campaign to put this on the plate of the American public, the news media and politicians including President Obama went hog wild with the term and it started making headlines every day. It wasn’t a new invention.”

“And yes, fake news exists but the idea that there is this huge campaign behind it to controversialize certain reports and censor, in my view, certain views is a propaganda campaign,” she continued. “And I think when David Brock, Hillary Clinton’s ally from Media Matters, announced that he would be the arbitrator, or help be the arbitrator, of so called fake news, that sort of sealed the deal that the whole thing is a propaganda effort and a political effort, not really an honest effort to seek out facts, but more to determine for other people what truth they should hear.”

Right on cue, Facebook announced it was empaneling a group of outsiders, including Politifact, Snopes, ABC, AP, the Washington Post and Poynter’s IPCN to announce to readers which sites are fake and to jiggle with the news feed to spare the readers from seeing them often.

Obviously, this is intended to shield Facebook from liability for news posted on the site, but it appears ill considered. The far left manipulator George Soros, for example, funds Poynter. AP regularly shades its stories, as my editor friend in upstate New York, Steven Waters, keeps noting, and the Washington Post just admitted this week it had posted a fake list of fake news sites.

As for the news organization fact checkers, James Taranto has regularly exposed them as – well — fakes, the way he nailed Politifact years ago:

PolitiFact’s 2013 “Lie of the Year” was the central ObamaCare fraud: “If you like your plan, you can keep your plan.” As this column noted at the time, the site had previously certified the promise as “true” (2008), then equivocated and labeled it “half true” in both 2009 and 2012.

Everyone’s entitled to his own opinion, but “fact checkers” think they’re entitled to call their own opinions facts. As the president perpetrated a fraud on American consumers, journalists have often helped him along. They would never dream of doing the same for an unscrupulous CEO of, say, a beer company.

This week, he covered more of the “fact checkers” and reminded us of Politifact’s song and dance on ObamaCare:

To be sure, in 2008 and 2009 the claim was not yet a lie, merely a promise; and in 2012 it was not a demonstrable lie, or at least not as clearly demonstrable as it was when policyholders had in fact started losing their plans. But it is difficult to understand how a categorical promise could be “half” true at any stage. (Maybe ObamaCare should be renamed Schrödinger’s Care.) And a promise is not a factual claim at all, so its truth or falsity is purely a matter of opinion.

Others have noted that PolitiFact has often given different ratings to what were substantively the same statements from different sources, usually with Democrats getting the benefit of the doubt when compared with Republicans.

On FNC, Tucker Carlson has been exposing real fake news and newsmakers.

Take the concession he got from Matt Cooper, Newsweek’s editor, that the commemorative issue of Hillary’s electoral victory, accidentally shipped out before the returns came in, was ridiculous and had never been seen by Newsweek’s editors, and Carlson’s mind-boggling interview with the wacky Newsweek reporter who claimed out of thin air that Trump had once been institutionalized for mental illness.

Iowahawk could not contain himself at the news AP was going to be on the prowl for fake news and tweeted:

“In related news, Anthony Weiner announces he will be working with Ashley Madison to stop online adultery.”

The award for fake news purveyors of the year has to go to the Washington Post and New York Times for peddling the sore loser Democratic fable that the Russians hacked the Clinton and DNC emails, passed them off to Julian Assange who published them in Wikileaks to help Trump. Why the Russians would want to hurt “Reset” Clinton — who was certain to follow Obama’s ineffectual  –policies toward Russia and who, among other things, as Secretary of State in a clear pay-to-play move let them buy up 20% of the U.S. uranium supplies — is an obvious, unspoken flaw in that argument. But there is much more to discount this story.

In the first place, her email server was insecure; in March of 2015 Don Surber showed how anyone could hack into her system.

The RNC was not so clueless and stopped attempted hacks. So the suggestion that Russia hacked both sides but only slipped to Assange the Democrat’s is poppycock.

In the second place, the Washington Post and NYT accounts claim that all the intelligence agencies and the head of the FBI concur that the Russians did it.  These largely unverified and mostly anonymously sourced pieces conflict with earlier stories that the agencies are in disagreement.

Comey and Clapper have not responded to these latest accusations, whose only named source is the CIA’s  Director John Brennan, but prior to these accounts Comey had a conversation with president-elect Trump in which he discounted the theory that Russia had provided the information to Wikileaks:

In telephone conversations with Donald Trump, FBI Director James Comey assured the president-elect there was no credible evidence that Russia influenced the outcome of the recent U.S. presidential election by hacking the Democratic National Committee and the e-mails of John Podesta, the chairman of Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign.

What’s more, Comey told Trump that James Clapper, the director of National Intelligence, agreed with this FBI assessment.

The only member of the U.S. intelligence community who was ready to assert that the Russians sanctioned the hacking was John Brennan, the director of the CIA, according to sources who were briefed on Comey’s conversations with Trump.

“And Brennan takes his marching orders from President Obama,” the sources quoted Comey as saying.

In Comey’s view, the leaks to the New York Times and the Washington Post alleging that the Russians tried — and perhaps even succeeded — in tilting the election to Trump were a Democratic Party effort to delegitimize Trump’s victory.

During their phone conversations, Comey informed Trump that the FBI had been alert for the past year to the danger that the Russians would try to cause mischief during the U.S. presidential election.

However, whether the Russians did so remains an open question, Comey said, adding that it was just as likely that the hacking was done by people who had no direct connection to the Russian government.

This account is in accord with those from members of Congress who had interviewed Comey and reported that he disagreed with Brennan, and with the New York Times‘ own account in October:

Law enforcement officials say that none of the investigations so far have found any conclusive or direct link between Mr. Trump and the Russian government. And even the hacking into Democratic emails, F.B.I. and intelligence officials now believe, was aimed at disrupting the presidential election rather than electing Mr. Trump.

Hillary Clinton’s supporters, angry over what they regard as a lack of scrutiny of Mr. Trump by law enforcement officials, pushed for these investigations.

The most damaging of the leaks involved the DNC’s work to knock Bernie Sanders out of the running. Isn’t it more likely that someone inside the organization was angry and provided the damaging emails?

And then there’s Assange, who repeatedly, forcefully denied that his source was Russia.

Today, news organization, as the Nation notes, “do overtly what the CIA has paid it to do covertly: regurgitate the claims of the spy agency and attack the credibility of those who question it.”

When the Democrats lose a presidential election, they work harder at delegitimizing the winner than they do respecting the democratic process. When Gore lost, it was “selected not elected” and Bush “lied us into war” — all fake. This time — as a result of the fecklessness of Clinton-Obama and Kerry – president-elect Trump faces a far more dangerous world than they found. The Chinese just stole an underwater drone of ours in off of the Philippines, Russia is continuing to threaten Europe, the EU is crumbling, and the Democrats’ childish nonsense, fed by the big-time fake newsmakers, is an even greater threat to us all.

 

Fake News

December 17, 2016

Fake News, Bill Whittle.com Via YouTube, December 16, 2016

RIGHT ANGLE: “Like a F—ing Firing Squad!”

November 24, 2016

RIGHT ANGLE: “Like a F—ing Firing Squad!” Bill Whittle Channel via YouTube, November 23, 2016