Saturday, April 21, 2007

Media Matters for America , April 21, 2007

KSFO's Morgan: Media Matters like Virginia Tech gunman

In an April 20 column for, Melanie Morgan, co-host of San Francisco radio station KSFO's Lee Rodgers & Melanie Morgan Program, compared Media Matters for America to the Virginia Tech gunman who killed 32 people before shooting himself to death. Morgan wrote: "Like that mentally unbalanced and angry gunman at Virginia Tech, they'll methodically march through the domiciles of the conservative movement, targeting the movement's leaders for career elimination -- until and unless we stand up and fight back against their campaign of mayhem against conservative leaders and causes." Morgan also attacked Media Matters as "left-wing free speech Nazis." Read more

GOP strategist Blakeman again accused Dem leader of "giv[ing] aid and comfort to our enemy"

On the April 20 edition of MSNBC Live, during a discussion of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's (D-NV) recent assertion that the Iraq war "is lost" -- which he followed by stating that it "can only be won diplomatically, politically, and economically" -- Republican strategist Brad Blakeman said that Reid "is absolutely, 100 percent wrong" and that "[h]is statements give aid and comfort to our enemy and demoralize our troops." Read more

Boortz attacked "Media Morons"

On the April 20 broadcast of his nationally syndicated radio show, Neal Boortz attacked Media Matters for America, which he called "Media Morons," for an April 20 New York Times article by reporter Jacques Steinberg headlined "Talk Radio Tries for Humor and a Political advantage." In the article, Steinberg noted that Boortz, while discussing the recent shootings at Virginia Tech on the April 18 broadcast of his show, speculated that "[w]hen the history of
this event is written ... we will have 25 students standing meekly waiting for this guy to execute them" and then aired an instrumental version of the Pat Benatar song "Hit Me With Your Best Shot." Boortz went on to state: "[S]omebody out there feeds this, because I know damn well Jacques Steinberg wasn't listening to The Neal Boortz Show. ... So my guess is Media Morons, I mean Media Matters. My guess is it was them. Because they specialize in disinformation." In fact, Media Matters did not publish an item documenting Boortz's comments -- or choices of music -- on the April 18 broadcast of his show. Read more

On Fox News, Steyn attacked Virginia Tech, claiming school "exemplifies" a "culture of passivity"

On the April 19 edition of Fox News' Your World with Neil Cavuto, Chicago Sun-Times columnist and National Review contributor Mark Steyn commented on the April 16 mass shooting at Virginia Tech, saying that "when one man is able to kill dozens of people in the same location over a period of several hours, that reflects a systemic failure." Steyn continued: "So we need to understand what caused that failure. And I think part of the problem is a general culture of passivity, which Virginia Tech exemplifies." Read more

On Irish TV, O'Reilly called Media Matters "an assassination website" that takes him "out of context"

On April 13, Fox News host Bill O'Reilly appeared on RTÉ One's The Late Late Show, a talk show based in Dublin, Ireland. During the interview, host Pat Kenny asked O'Reilly about his previous references to the poor as "irresponsible and lazy" and the Iraqi people as "prehistoric." When Kenny said that he found both remarks on Media Matters for America's website, O'Reilly responded by attacking Media Matters as "an assassination website" and a "far-left propaganda thing." O'Reilly further claimed that he didn't "remember saying" either of the statements pointed out by Kenny and added that Media Matters takes him "out of context." However, Media Matters provided documentation of O'Reilly referring to the poor as "irresponsible and lazy" and the Iraqi people as "prehistoric." Read more

Will the media ask Bush who is telling the truth about his Syria conversation with Pelosi?

On April 20, The Washington Post reported that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said President Bush, at an April 18 White House meeting, "told her he did not criticize her recent trip to Syria." According to the Post, Pelosi said Bush "told her in an unsolicited comment that it was actually the State Department that criticized her" for heading a bipartisan delegation to Syria
and meeting with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. The Post also reported, however, that deputy White House press secretary Dana Perino "took issue with Pelosi's account of the conversation in the Cabinet Room," claiming "that Pelosi started the conversation about the Syria trip and that she never heard Bush back off his criticism." Read more

Media outlets reported that Reid said Iraq war "is lost," but failed to note his further comments

On April 19 and 20, numerous print and television media outlets reported that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) had said that "the [Iraq] war is lost" during a press conference discussing Congress' standoff with President Bush over emergency funding for the war. However, these outlets did not also report that, later during the press conference, Reid added that "the war, at this stage, can only be won diplomatically, politically, and economically." Other news outlets reporting on Reid's statement -- for example, Agence France-Presse and Reuters -- noted Reid's further comments. Moreover, during a speech on the Senate floor the same day, Reid reiterated his stance, advocating a "political solution" in Iraq and asserting that "there is still a chance to change course." Read more

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