Saturday, October 24, 2009

Free FOX!

The Obama administration is going after Fox News, denying it is a legitimate news organization. My thought is that this is unprofessional and counterproductive. Fox is getting many more viewers now that they are the cool rebels, so to speak. The President of the United States should have more pressing things to do than waging a war of words with a cable news network. Fox is not fair and balanced, as it claims, but neither are most of the news organizations in the country. My favorite blogger, the political scientist Brendan Nyhan puts it well here:

While I have no love for Fox, which is a frequent conduit for misleading claims, it's not clear to me that non-"objective" journalism is in principle bad for American democracy or "un-American." The sad reality is that the "he said"/"she said" reporting style practiced by the establishment media legitimizes far more misinformation than Fox ever will. As my co-authors and I argue in the conclusion to All the President's Spin, responsible but non-"objective" journalism is sometimes better at countering spin than the mainstream press.

Is Fox more biased than the New York Times or MSNBC? My intuition says it's about even, but that is a guess and nothing more. (I would say Sean Hannity and Keith Olbermann come out about even on the partisan bias scale). Let the American people decide what is or is not a "legitimate" news organization, not the government.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Health care non-reform

This column from the Huffington Post basically sums up my feelings on the Senate bill: Health Reform That Isn't by Marcia Angell, M.D. It is a massive giveaway to the insurance companies. Where is this government takeover I keep hearing about? But, the public option is government-run, right? Two things: it may not pass, and the vast majority of people wouldn't be eligible for it anyway.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Is Rush a racist?

Well, yes, and
here he kind of admits it:

"Look it, let me put it to you this way. The NFL all too often looks like a game between the Bloods and the Crips without any weapons. There, I said it." Limbaugh (10/14/09) admitted making this remark, but claimed it was a response to the actions of one player who was penalized for taunting an opponent. Limbaugh admitted that his language "makes it look racial, the way I chose to describe it. I could have perhaps chosen a different term."

Maybe we could move on to more important stories, like Jon and Kate, or the boy in the balloon.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Obama and Homer Simpson

President Obama's recent Nobel Peace Prize reminds me of a great Simpsons episode, "Brother Can You Spare Two Dimes." In the episode (1991, 3rd season), Mr.Burns buys off Homer from a lawsuit by giving him an utterly fradulent award, the "First Annual Montgomery Burns Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Excellence." Of course, Homer has done nothing at all to do deserve the award. At the ceremony, Lisa Simpson put it well: "This award is the biggest farce I ever saw."

Try this link.