Saturday, April 25, 2009

Media Bias and Congressional Deception, the Phony Soldiers Episode

This story, Which I call the "phony soldiers episode", is the clearest example of media bias and congressional deception for political purposes in recent history.

It starts off in 2006, with a Tacoma man named Jesse Macbeth, who took the stage at demonstrations held in opposition to the U.S.’s role in Iraq. Macbeth claimed to be a decorated Iraq war veteran. Macbeth recounted tales of systemic murder and torture performed by US military on Iraqi civilians.

The AP ran a story about Macbeth's allegations of abuse by the US military. Naturally, the Mainstream media (MSM) took the ball and ran with it. The MSM was constantly running stories about how the US military was performing torture and murders. There were many other news stories with similar themes. One other that comes to mind in the "Haditha massacres".

As it tuned out, most of these stories turned out to be false. In reality, Macbeth only made it through only six weeks of Army basic training and never set foot in Iraq. Macbeth completely fabricated his stories about abuses by the US military in Iraq. Macbeth faced charges for making false statements. Macbeth was eventually convicted and sentenced to five months in prison in U.S. District Court in Seattle, three months in a halfway house after his release and three years of probation.

At this point, Rush Limbaugh was talking about media bias in regard to the Iraq war. Limbaugh called those who report falsely on US atrocities in Iraq as "media darlings". Limbaugh was explaining how the media was reporting on all allegations of military abuse with prominent coverage. Limbaugh pointed out that most of these allegations were subsequently proved to be false and the MSM would give the exonerations obscure coverage or no coverage at all.

Subsequently,Limbaugh used the term "phony soldiers" while talking to a caller. Rush was clearly referring to liars like Jesse Macbeth. Jesse Macbeth was a "phony soldier" because he never served in Iraq and made up stories about US military abuses.

At this point in time an unrelated poll came out that indicated that many soldiers in Iraq were opposed the way that Bush was handling the war. "Media Matters", a liberal watchdog of conservative radio, took Limbaugh's "phony soldiers" comment out of context and reported that Rush Limbaugh was calling soldiers who opposed Bush's Iraq policies "phony soldiers". The MSM picked up the ball and went on a rampage against Limbaugh. The MSM attacked Limbaugh as being unpatriotic. The MSM said that Limbaugh had disrespected our soldiers and veterans because he calls them "phony soldiers' when they oppose Bush's policies in Iraq.

This "out of context" quote of Rush saying "phony soldiers" reached fever pitch in the MSM. Unbelievably, several Senators made speeches on the Senate floor condemning Limbaugh for disrespecting our soldiers and military. They even talked abut voting for "censure" of Rush Limbaugh. After a couple of days of discussing Rush Limbaugh on the Senate floor, Harry Reid wrote a letter to Rush's syndicator. This is the letter that Harry Reid wrote:

Here is an unedited version of Limbaugh's broadcast where he used the term "phony soldiers". Please listen to the entire clip. Limbaugh uses the term phony soldiers in the beginning of the clip and then several minutes pass before he explains what he meant by the term phony (fake) soldiers. The MSM reports only report on the first part of this clip and completely ignores the context that Limbaugh provides at the end. Please listen to this entire clip. Here is the youtube video of Limbaugh's broadcast:

Limbaugh brilliantly turned this incident to his advantage. As it turned out, Mark Mays, CEO of Clear Channel Communications, the recipient of Harry Reid's letter of admonition, also happens to be a friend of Rush Limbaugh. Mark Mays turned the letter over to Rush. Then Rush had a brilliant idea. Rush decided to publicly auction this letter off on EBay. Rush pledged to donate the proceeds of the auction to a charity that provides college scholarships for children of American servicemen who have been killed in action. Rush also pledged to match the winning bid with his own donation to that charity.

The auction ran about a week. It was very exciting. Rush announced the high bid every day on his show. Finally, at the end of the week, Rush announced the winning bid. The winning bid was 2.1 million dollars. This was the highest sale on EBay for charity ever. Rush also pledged to match the winning bid and Rush donated another 2.1 million dollars to the charity himself.

What is amazing is that the auction, the record sale price, the 4.2 million dollar donation to charity and the truth about the phony soldiers episode was barely covered by the MSM. In the end, Harry Reid tried to take credit for the events that led up to the 4.2 million dollar charitable donation, although Reid himself did not contribute a dime, even after being asked to donate by Limbaugh.

Here are two more links to youtube videos. The first video is when Limbaugh announces the auction. The second one is an interview on FOX News, a month after the auction, in which Rush confirms that the Charity had received 4.2 million dollars. Be sure to watch the second video in it's entirety.

In my humble opinion, this type of bias by the media was no mistake, it was intentional. This is part of a pattern that I constantly see. Do you know the whole story about the 8 marines that were arrested in Haditha, Iraq for war crimes? In a nutshell, they were locked up in a military prison for over a year during their murder trials. Eventually they where not only acquitted, but completely exonerated. The Judge actually called some of these men heroes for their part in the so called "Haditha massacre".

Time magazine wrote an article accusing Marines of atrocities in Haditha. Then the MSM picked up the ball and ran with this false accusations. Of course the media extensively covered the charges and constantly used the term "Haditha massacre". Democratic Pennsylvania Congressman Murtha publicly called these Marines cold blooded killers and actually fabricated stories about their atrocities during news interviews. The charges of atrocities were plastered all over the news reports in gruesome detail. However, the eventual outcome of the trial was barely mentioned by the MSM.

This video is typical of the coverage by the MSM, it includes a tape of congressman Murtha calling our troops cold blooded killers. It was later proved in court that these charges were based on the acuisations of enemy sympathizers in Iraq without any corroboration.
Please watch this entire report and extensive interview of Murtha.

Here is a blog about the outcome of the final trial.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Tea Parties and Media Bias

The mainstream media (MSM) has been portraying the recent "tea party" demonstrations as being stirred up by rich businessmen, right wing extremists and racists. Nancy Pelocy (Democratic speaker of the house) characterizes these tax day demonstrators as astroturfers, rather than "grass roots" protesters. This is blatantly false.

I strongly disagree with the massive federal spending during the Bush administration. I disagreed with the 165 billion dollar Bush"tax rebate" program, when individuals were sent "$600 tax rebates. I also strongly disagreed with the 700 billion dollar TARP program that was pushed by Bush and McCain. I disagreed with the bailouts of banks, insurance companies, securities firms and automobile companies that were supported by both the Bush and Obama administrations.

Most of the tea party demonstrators are opposed to big government and big government spending regardless of the political party that is responsible. I watched FOX News host, Glenn Beck, at a tea party at the Alamo in Texas yesterday. Beck got louder cheers when he blamed Republicans than when he blamed Democrats for irresponsible spending. Beck, myself and most demonstrators blame both parties, yet the MSM characterizes the tea party demonstrators as anti-Obama right wing extremists. They seek out demonstrators with extreme views to interview and then claim that they are representative of the entire crowd.

There is little difference between the economic policy of the two parties, other than the current administration is spending more and faster than ever before. The same could have been said about Bush at the time, but now the spending has become exceedingly reckless because many say that it will be impossible to repay our debt because of the current level of spending.

The MSM (main stream media) doesn't tell you that there are many Democrats also present at these tea parties. I am fed up with the current crop of politicians on both sides of the isle and so are most demonstrators. Although there are those who have specific right wing agendas that the MSM focuses on, most demonstrators are protesting against big government spending and the ever increasing the size and scope of the federal government.

Also, the MSM has coined the phrase "tea-bagging" to describe these demonstrators. They often use this double-entendre because "tea-bagging" is a word used to describe a sexual fetish. The MSM is now commonly referring to these demonstrators as "tea-baggers" which is a vulgar insult. This not-so-subtle insult is intended to humiliate the hundreds of thousands of legitimate "tea party" demonstrators. It is tantamount to calling civil rights demonstrators the "N" word. The mainstream media has lost all their journalistic standards. They are giggling like juveniles while using the term tea-bagging. Read the following column by Matt Taibbi of rolling stone magazine then click on the video to hear double-entendre by mainstream CNN journalist Anderson Cooper:

The so-called journalist, Matt Taibbi, wrote the following:

I have to say, I’m really enjoying this whole teabag thing. It’s really inspiring some excellent daydreaming. For one thing, it’s brought together the words teabag and Michelle Malkin for me in a very powerful, thrilling sort of way. Not that I haven’t ever put those two concepts together before, but this is the first time it’s happened while in the process of reading her actual columns.

Previously Michelle Malkin’s writing was on the edge of unreadable; she’s sort of like Ann Coulter, only without that tiny fraction of P.T. Barnum/Mick Jagger-esque self-promotional flair that makes Coulter at least vaguely interesting. When you read Ann Coulter, you know you’re reading someone who would "F" a hippopotamus if she thought it would boost her Q rating. That’s a rare quality and it commands one’s attention.

Michelle Malkin doesn’t have that. She’s just a mean little dunce who’s wedged herself into a nicely paying career as a GOP spokesclown, and she’s going to ride that gig for as long as it keeps gas in her minivan.

And that’s fine, good for her. But that doesn’t make her readable. However, this move of hers to spearhead the teabag movement really adds an element to her writing that wasn’t there before. Now when I read her stuff, I imagine her narrating her text, book-on-tape style, with a big, hairy set of balls in her mouth. It vastly improves her prose.

In this next set of clips, see how CNN reporter Susan Roesgen, argues with conservative "tea party" demonstrators. In the second clip she is shown sympathetically interviewing liberal activists. The contrast is stark.

Why is this CNN reporter pushing Obama's agenda and demonizing those opposed to it, rather than conducting objective interviews?

Finaly, here is an example of extreme liberal bias, and the wholesale, demonization, degradation and hatred of demonstrators at the April fifteenth tea parties. Click on the following video to hear the vitriolic rantings of actress-activist Janeane Garofalo, interviewed by Keith Olbermann on MSNBC.

I maintain that this bias is the rule, not an exception. The MSM has become blatantly biased in their support of Obama and his policies to the point that they throw journalistic standards out the window in an effort to discredit and demonize public opposition to Obama's policies.