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Media Tag

Yesterday in Iowa, the Hillary Clinton campaign told their young supporters they couldn't speak to the press. This clumsy and seemingly paranoid move earned Hillary Clinton mockery even on MSNBC. Daniel Halper of the Weekly Standard has the details:
"Here's what struck me," said Susan Page of USA Today, "when I read the coverage in the Des Moines Register this morning. Jennifer Jacobs, who's been on your show, was covering this last night. Big demonstrations outside of young people for O'Malley and Hillary Clinton. She went up to the Clinton supporters -- these are protesters for Clinton -- and they were told they were not allowed to [speak to] a reporter." Page continued, "Now, why in the world would the campaign tell their own supporters who came out to campaign in favor Hillary Clinton ... these are the young people, college kids, for Hillary, and they've been told they can't talk to reporters. Why in the world would you do that?
Enjoy the video:

Last night, a writer at Gawker outed and gay-shamed someone at the behest of an unnamed (for his safety!) source. It was a story steeped in sex, fame, cash, and blackmail, which made it a perfect target for today's salacious clickbait culture. Today, Gawker's managing partners voted 5-1 (with the lone dissenter being the editor who approved the story) to take the story down---but the damage has already been done. Sorry, Nick Denton---you don't get to take this one back. (The link above is a web archive link; if you wish to read their hit job, you can click knowing that you won't be giving Gawker any traffic.) Long story short, Gawker allegedly received a series of text messages and photos showing a planned liaison between Condé Nast CFO David Geithner (his name sounds familiar because he's Tim Geithner's brother) and a gay porn star and escort. Gawker claims that the escort, whose story is told under the pseudonym "Ryan," sent them the photos and text messages after Geithner (who is married to a woman) was unable to meet him as planned during a Chicago business trip. Major money was involved: $2500 plus airfare for "Ryan's" plane ticket from Texas to Chicago. Geithner forwarded a chunk of the cash to "Ryan" in advance, and sent his photo and lodging plans to "Ryan" via text:

It's probably safe to say that there aren't many liberals in media who were impressed by Hillary Clinton's recent interview on CNN. Chuck Todd of NBC, Maggie Haberman of the New York Times, Mike Barnicle of MSNBC and others had little praise. David Rutz of the Washington Free Beacon put together a highlight reel of media reactions:
The Media Thought Hillary’s CNN Interview Was Terrible Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s first wide-ranging, sit-down interview of the 2016 election cycle was a dud, according to mainstream media observers. MSNBC’s Morning Joe panelists thought she was evasive, fearful, and gave off an annoyed vibe. On immigration, she made untrue claims about her Republican opponents and CNN’s Jake Tapper warned her about overplaying her hand. CNN’s Alisyn Camerota called her out for blaming right-wing attacks for her sinking poll numbers, reminiscent of her accusations of a “vast right-wing conspiracy“ when she was first lady. Meet the Press‘s Chuck Todd, New York Times reporter Maggie Haberman, and BBC’s Katty Kay all said, separately, she looked “defensive” on questions about her private email server.

A professional campaign operative I know believes optics are extremely important when it comes to political candidates. Therefore, the optics of Hillary Clinton having her staff herd reporters behind a rope during a parade in New Hampshire certainly didn't look all that great. For the reporters who were there, the story became about being held behind ropes as Hillary walked the parade route:
At the Fourth of July parade Hillary Clinton marched in today in Gorham, New Hampshire, reporters following the candidate were kept -- and at moments, dragged -- behind an actual moving rope line. The rope, which two Clinton staffers held on to on either side, was meant to give Clinton space as she walked down the parade route, but photos of reporters being dragged behind the rope as she marched have gone viral on Twitter.
They certainly did. Here are a couple of them:

The NY Times refuses to publish cartoons of Mohammed even as part of news stories about cartoons of Mohammed, and the violence that ensues. But The NY Times has no hesitation in publishing Condom Pope artwork, a portrait of the Pope composed of condoms. The Times Public Editor Margaret Sullivan, who functions as a quasi-ombudsman, wrote how the Times Standards Editor responded (emphasis added):
The standards editor, Philip B. Corbett, fielded an inquiry about this from The Washington Examiner. Here’s how he responded:
There’s no simple, unwavering formula we can apply in situations like this. We really don’t want to gratuitously offend anyone’s deeply held beliefs. That said, it’s probably impossible to avoid ever offending anyone. We have to make these judgments all the time. Reasonable people might disagree about any one of them.

Have you noticed that the same media that uses words like "extreme" to describe Ted Cruz, Scott Walker, and other Republicans finds nothing out of the ordinary when it comes to Bernie Sanders? Sanders, who wants a 90% tax rate for the wealthiest Americans, and recently came under fire for a 1972 column describing female rape fantasies, describes himself as a socialist---yet the media treats him like a viable candidate for 2016. Socialism is the most important aspect of Sanders' political identity and goes a long way in helping us understand the media's kid-glove treatment of him. Jennifer Harper of the Washington Times:
The Bernie Effect: Media normalize socialism There’s yet another trend in the trendy news media, identified by more than one concerned critic. Consider a new Investor’s Business Daily editorial titled “The soft-soaping of socialism in the U.S.” The publication focuses on the happy-go-lucky press coverage of a certain Vermont independent making a vigorous run for the White House as a Democrat.

America's foreign policy in the Middle East is falling apart and health insurance premiums are skyrocketing under Obamacare, but the liberal media feels your pain, America. As usual, it's all about Obama. Amber Phillips of the Washington Post:
President Obama’s legacy is increasingly in legal jeopardy President Obama's second-term agenda, it seems, is in the hands of the courts. Same-sex marriage. Obamacare. Climate change. And now immigration. And in many cases, there is significant doubt about whether his signature initiatives will stand legal scrutiny. The latest blow to Obama's second-term plans came Tuesday when a federal appeals court in New Orleans denied the administration's request to move forward with implementing his expanded executive action on immigration to defer deportation for millions of undocumented immigrants.
That's funny. He didn't run on gay marriage. In fact, Obama said in a 2008 interview with pastor Rick Warren that he believed marriage was between a man and a woman.

The smoke may have cleared, but the Rolling Stone retraction disaster isn't over yet. UVA associate dean of students Nicole Eramo has filed a multimillion dollar defamation lawsuit against Rolling Stone, its parent company Wenner Media, and journalist Sabrina Rubin Erdely for their portrayal of Eramo in the now-retracted and forever infamous "A Rape on Campus." One of Eramo's chief responsibilities at UVA was to handle allegations of sexual assault. In the complaint, she argues that Rolling Stone and Erdely used her to personify the "campus indifferent to sexual assault" narrative and as a result caused her emotional and physical distress, and damaged her reputation. The complaint itself is a parade of horrors. It lays out the allegations Rolling Stone and Erdely made one by one---that Eramo coddled Jackie, that she was indifferent to Jackie's allegations, that she pressured Jackie to not report a rape, that she abused Jackie, and that she attempted to suppress Jackie's rape---and lays out the case that Rolling Stone's own subsequent statements to the media prove that those allegations weren't only untrue, but "categorically false" and defamatory per se.

If you're wondering why the Democratic Party's presumed 2016 nominee has been quiet lately, you're not alone. Hillary Clinton has answered only seven questions from the media since announcing her run for president. Zach C. Cohen of National Journal:
Here Are All Seven Media Questions Hillary Clinton Has Answered During Her Campaign Most of the media questions Clinton has answered have focused on policy (the exact type of inquiry she recently encouraged reporters to focus on). They've touched on ongoing trans-Pacific trade negotiations, campaign finance, and foreign donations to the Clinton Foundation... Here are all seven: Question 1: "Secretary Clinton, your reaction please to these book allegations? Did foreign entities receive any special treatment for making any kind of donations to the foundation or your husband?"—ABC in Keene, New Hampshire, April 20

Happy Earth Day, everyone! Hope you're all enjoying your...composting...and your...carbon offsets? I used aerosol hairspray today, so I'm not even going to pretend I observe this non-holiday. President Obama does, however. Today, he boarded his private jumbo jet and burned down to the Everglades to deliver a blistering take on his political opponents who aren't doing enough to stop people from flying their private jets everywhere. Also, something about protecting fragile ecosystems. In anticipation of Obama's Earth Day stump speech, the media started publishing annoying articles about Air Force One's carbon footprint. How inconvenient, right? When asked about the jet's effect on the environment, White House press secretary Josh Earnest crumbled under the weight of his boss's sanctimony. Watch the madness unfold:

Earlier today, I wrote about the importance of pointing out every time an official spokesperson gets testy with their press pool over fair-yet-tough questions. Marie Harf got herself in hot water yesterday when she hinted to the corps that the questions they were asking were far too complex to cover in a press briefing, then got caught lying about how much information she had about the Iranian nuclear deal. It was ugly, and told us a lot more about the State Department than Harf's policy bullet points. Today, Josh Earnest ran into a similar roadblock during the midday press briefing with the White House press corps. Earnest has a history of trying to run offense around tough questions, but it's only recently that the corps has responded with soundbite-worthy pushback. Today's little show involved a question about a comment Hillary Clinton made about small business growth under the Obama administration. She said that small business creation has "stalled out" in the United States, and ABC News correspondent Jon Karl wanted a response from the White House. Watch here, via Real Clear Politics:

We in the conservative media have spent a great deal of time over the past 6 years criticizing the Obama comms shop for freezing the media out of its most controversial decisions. Conservatives are used to a biased press pool, and for the most part, this group hasn't disappointed in that regard, even when they haven't had all the information they needed to write a story. Apparently, though, the lack of information flowing from the White House to the press pool has slowed to a trickle---and the corps is ready to fight back. The White House Correspondents Association is preparing a list of demands promises they hope the White House will commit to. The corps has been working on the list for over a year, but a recent snub on the part of the President's team has kicked the conversation about press access into high gear. The Washington Examiner explains what happened:

Religious wars continue:
Islamist gunmen burst into a Kenyan university before dawn Thursday, shooting students and taking hostages in a terror attack that left 70 dead, Kenyan officials said. Two attackers were killed in the ongoing security operation, and one was arrested, authorities said.... Joel Ayora, who was on the campus and witnessed the attack, said gunmen burst into a Christian service. Taking hostages from the service, they then "proceeded to the hostels, shooting anybody they came across except their fellows, the Muslims." The attackers separated students by religion, allowing Muslims to leave and keeping an unknown number of Christians hostage, Agence France-Presse reported... The dangerously porous border between Somalia and Kenya has made it easy for Al-Shabaab militants to cross over and carry out attacks.
The attack is now said to be over, with four terrorists killed and over 140 students murdered. Fifty or so who had been held hostage (mostly females) have been freed.

I have a late entry for the annual “Egregious 8″ tournament, which pits wasteful government programs against each other. It turns out that blogging can be fun and profitable...for those websites on the government dole!
Since Politico, a politics-focused website and newspaper, launched its subscription-based news service Politico Pro in 2011, government agencies have increasingly turned to the service to keep abreast of the latest developments in their spheres of policy. Government records show fiscal year 2011 contracts with the owner of Politico, Capitol News Company, totaling $41,900. By fiscal year 2014, there were no fewer than twenty-eight contracts with sixteen different departments and agencies, including the Executive Office of the President, totaling $431,800. A chart from the website illustrates the trend (including the first five and a half months of fiscal year 2015) LI #15 Money to Politico The first five and a half months of fiscal 2015 have seen fifteen contracts for $198,188, although at least one agency, the FCC, appears not to have renewed a $50,000 fiscal 2014 contract in 2015.
Who knew such riches awaited!

Bill Maher has some ideas about what really destroyed Brian Williams' credibility with the American people...and it has absolutely nothing to do with his recent suspension. From Mediaite:
See, what “destroyed” Brian Williams’ credibility in Maher’s eyes was “ten years of wasting precious news time with bullshit stories.” It really bothers him that national nightly newscasts shirk their “sacred responsibility” to report the news in favor of viral YouTube videos, cutesy human interest stories, and lots and lots of weather coverage. He called it “journalistic malpractice” for Williams to spend so little time reporting on climate change and instead covering east coast blizzards “like white Godzilla is on the way.”

The same mainstream media that refused to demand Obama's (still undisclosed) Columbia University records in 2008 (while reassuring us that he was brilliant) has taken a keen interest in the academic pedigree of Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker. Professor Jacobson repeatedly reminds us that the MSM always tries to kill Republican candidacies in the cradle. The Washington Post did it with Rick Perry's hunting property rock. Jeb Bush's high school antics are fair game, as were Mitt Romney's. Now they're trying to play the same game with Scott Walker's unfinished college degree. David A. Fahrenthold of the Washington Post wrote this yesterday:
As Scott Walker mulls White House bid, questions linger over college exit Scott Walker was gone. Dropped out. And in the spring of his senior year. In 1990, that news stunned his friends at Marquette University. Walker, the campus’s suit-wearing, Reagan-loving politico — who enjoyed the place so much that he had run for student body president — had left without graduating. To most of the Class of 1990 — and, later, to Wisconsin’s political establishment — Walker’s decision to quit college has been a lingering mystery. Not even his friends at Marquette were entirely sure why he never finished. Some had heard that a parent had fallen ill, or maybe there was some financial strain. Others thought he had simply had enough of school. Walker clearly liked college politics more than college itself. He had managed to line up 47 campaign endorsements, including ones from the ski team and the varsity chorus, but he had trouble showing up on time for French. And, after four years, he had faltered on both fronts. He’d lost an ugly race for president. And he apparently had far too few credits to graduate.
Allahpundit of Hot Air notes that journalists are already playing the requisite "gotcha" games with Scott Walker from which Democrats are always exempt.
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