Dan Rather Tells Jon Stewart Most Journalists Aren’t Liberal: ‘Hasn’t Been My Experience’ | NewsBusters.org

In the “You have to be kidding me” category —

Dan Rather Tells Jon Stewart Most Journalists Aren’t Liberal: ‘Hasn’t Been My Experience’ | NewsBusters.org.

JON STEWART, HOST: This idea of liberal bias and the idea, you know, in your experience, haven’t most journalists, haven’t their politics been somewhat more liberal?

DAN RATHER: No, it hasn’t been my experience.

STEWART: Oh, that hasn’t been your experience?

RATHER: It has not been my experience.Most journalists I grew up with, most journalists I’ve worked with and practiced with were trying to be honest brokers of information. Now, what sometimes got you a reputation you’re liberal, journalists generally form an apprenticeship covering the police beat at midnight, after midnight, it was Saturday night, the charity hospital. Journalists, the best of them, do see a Dickensian side of society that most people don’t see. So when they try to call attention to that, people who don’t like it say, “Oh, you’re liberal.” It has not been my experience.

I know that it’s widely believed that CBS, NBC, ABC chock full of liberals. Not true. What it’s chock full of is people who wanted to give honest news, straightforward news, and voted both ways in many elections. I’m not saying that nobody in the newsroom was liberal any more than I would say nobody was conservative. Frequently what happened people who were described as conservatives want to say, “I work at CBS News, and you know, almost everybody there was liberal.” What they really mean is not everybody there agreed with them all the time. This is a sham. It’s a camouflage for wanting…

STEWART: Do you think it’s been, it seems to have been very effective though, that working the refs. That’s what I would say. It’s really worked, and people are now very afraid to appear in any way as though they’re taking a position on anything.

RATHER: Well, that’s true. And that’s why I say that journalism, American journalism in some ways has lost its guts, or it needs a spine translate. I do not exempt myself in this criticism – made my mistakes along this line. But there is a price to pay, and I’m not excusing it, but what happens if you stand up and ask a really tough question now and challenge say a president or vice president, you know there’s going to be a price to be paid for that. And so often it is, “You know what? I’ll just get in the middle, move with the mass, I’ve got house payments and car [unintelligible].”

The bolding is mine, but can you believe that?  Let’s break it down —

Rather uses the terms “liberal” and “conservative” rather the party labels of “democrat” and “republican;” but let’s accept that liberal = democrat and conservative = republican.  Ready?

Here’s a study covering decades about the voting habits of journalists.  Isn’t it funny how the journalists vote for democrats, sometimes as much as 90% of the time.  At best, it appears journalists vote for republicans 20% of the time.

Yet Rather claims that it’s about even in the newsroom, between conservatives and liberals.  Huh.  Isn’t that odd?  Does 80% to 20% seem like an even split to you?  I’m no mathematician (maybe), but I’m pretty sure they aren’t even close.  Yet Rather would have us believe that it’s really a pretty even split and anyone who says otherwise is just some kind of malcontent.

He goes on to say that conservatives whining about being outnumbered is really just being mad that people don’t agree with them.  Um.  Doesn’t that make the point that maybe conservatives are outnumbered by liberals in the newsroom?

He wants to make out that journalists are honest brokers of the truth, yet he peddles this piffle?  What about their honest coverage of Solyndra?  Fast and Furious?

Honestly, this guy is either disingenuous or he’s senile.  Possibly both, since the two things aren’t mutually exclusive.  But he’s certainly not speaking the truth.

Forged documents.  Wasn’t there a story about some journalist presenting forged documents as proof against a sitting politican running for re-election?  I wonder if there was some political agenda being advanced by that journalist?

So, yes, Mr. Rather.  A more credible source to answer the question of media bias could certainly not exist.

Oh wait!  That was sarcasm, wasn’t it?


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Why We Fight

UPDATE: Now every day is Blog About Aaron Walker Day!  Thanks, Lee!  I’m adding the new tag and category even as we speak.  Hey lefties, you want to shut us up?  You’re doing it wrong.

Donate to help Aaron here.

A really good explanation of Tuesday’s Kimberlin v Walker hearing here, from David Hogberg.

So apparently, in the United States, Freedom of Speech just died on Tuesday, because, in effect, saying things about Person A which he/she might construe as being “mean” (even if those things are completely true) might somehow “incite” other people to do harm to Person A.

So writing about someone in a manner they don’t like can now get you thrown in jail.

Found the above post via Patterico, who posts some celebratory comments and tweets from Kimberlin supporters, threatening legal action against other critics like Liberty Chick, Lee Stranahan, Stacy McCain, Michelle Malkin, Dana Loesch, and Patterico.

This is why this story matters: because now that Kimberlin has succeeded in shutting up an opponent via legal means — regardless of how short-termed this will prove to be — he and his pals will go after more opponents.  And more.  And more.

And yet it’s people on the left who say that people on the right don’t believe in Free Speech.  Like this guy, who left a comment on this post at the Volokh Conspiracy about the Tuesday hearing.

95.  Tom Joyce

I turned to your blog, Professor Volokh, because I have found you to be an honest man. An honest man whom I disagree with, true, but an honest man.

The usual right wing hand-wringing in this case is too silly for words. Is there never a point where modern conservatives break with the conformist and sob sister gathering of bloggers?

Have you on the right all lost your mind? Nothing I have read so far has escaped the description of a lynch mob on the right trying to silence an ineffectual man whom the conservatives have simply invested with powers he does not have and could not possibly have ever had.

The transcript of Mr. Kimberlin’s attempt to get Aaron Walker to stop harrassing him reads like a man trying to get a bully to stop picking on him.

If this really is the way that you all think, and thanks to Talk Radio, it is clear that “conservatives” (I do not believe that Rod Dreher or David Frum or Daniel Larison deserve the company of the knee jerk reactionaries who gleefully act in mindless concert) value conformity above thinking, confusion above clarity, and mega-dittoing over having an active life of ideas, interests, and passion.

So let’s breakdown Mr. Joyce’s comment, shall we?

He begins with some disingenuous brown-nosing: you’re an honest man I disagree with, but the “usual right wing hand-wringing in this case is too silly for words. Is there never a point where modern conservatives break with the conformist and sob sister gathering of bloggers?”

Got it?  All of you are not only silly for blogging about all this Kimberlin stuff, you’re all a bunch of crybabies who take your cues from all the crybabies you hang around with.

It’s just “too silly for words” to care that the media seems to only portray Kimberlin — at worst, on the rare occasion they actually talk about him — as a drug dealer, as if he’s some penny-ante criminal dealing some weed in a parking lot somewhere.  It’s “too silly for words” that we wonder if the people who give his tax-exempt organizations money know who they’re giving money to.  It’s “too silly for words” to think that a guy who bragged in Citizen K about how he learned at 19 how to beat the taxman might STILL be engaged in the same activity now, with contributors’ donations.

We’re just blowing things out of proportion and then crying if someone on our side gets a legal spanking.

It gets better, if “better” can be described as “even more disingenuous.”

Have you on the right all lost your mind? Nothing I have read so far has escaped the description of a lynch mob on the right trying to silence an ineffectual man whom the conservatives have simply invested with powers he does not have and could not possibly have ever had.

You’re all crazy, aren’t you?  You’re just a crazy, out-of-control lynch mob, trying to shut some little nobody up while making him out to be Hitler’s step-brother.

This isn’t the first time the left has made the argument that Kimberlin is some nobody we’re trying to make out is more evil than Hitler.  Markos Moulitsas said it last week.  He even used the dreaded H word when he did.

Look, I don’t recall any blogger who took up the call to blog about Kimberlin last Friday ever saying he was worse than Hitler.  I didn’t.  No one’s blog I read did, either.  But by bringing Hitler into this, people like this Joyce guy are trying to make it look like we’re a bunch of crazy, unhinged kooks who are making crazy claims against some weasly little nobody.  We really should be ashamed of ourselves.

I also don’t recall anyone saying that Brett Kimberlin should be shut up and shut down.  We don’t do that on this side of the political spectrum.

All we want to do is talk about this guy’s past.  He’s a convicted criminal.  We think the world should know the extent of his crimes, so they can decide whether or not they want to give his tax-exempt organizations some money.

It’s the left that doesn’t like it when people say nasty things like the truth.  The truth can be ugly, or uncomfortable, or inconvenient, to quote Al Gore.  That’s all very true.  But it’s still the truth and not some lie.  If wee Brett’s children can get on the internet and read the mean (true) things other people say about daddy and then ask uncomfortable questions or feel bad, well, that’s not really the fault of the truth-tellers, is it?  Isn’t that Brett’s fault, for having committed the crimes in the first place?

The truth is that Kimberlin is a nasty little man who’s done nasty, criminal things.  Some of which he’s gone to jail for.  Others, apparently not.  And worse, he’s not only never shown any remorse for the bad things he’s done, he’s tried to constantly blame everyone else for his bad behavior.  He didn’t set the bombs — the ATF framed him!  The witnesses lied about him!  The government set him up and made him a political prisoner!

He can pretend that he’s not the same man now that he was then, but most of us expect more than just his word for that.  Maybe paying restitution to the DeLong family would prove he was on the path to redemption?  Nah!  He’d rather live in his mommy’s basement and pretend he has no assets than pay the money he owes the DeLongs.

If I had tons of money to donate to causes I believed in, I’d want to know about the people running those organizations, because I think character matters.  I’d want to know what their background was, because I’d want to ensure that money was to be used in a way I supported.  I also wouldn’t want my name tied to someone who is a convicted perjurer and a remorseless felon.

But maybe that’s just me?

The transcript of Mr. Kimberlin’s attempt to get Aaron Walker to stop harrassing him reads like a man trying to get a bully to stop picking on him.

And what about the 28,000 word essay Walker posted about all the harassment Kimberlin and his pals have done to him?  If you read that, would you maybe change your mind about who’s the bully and who’s the victim?

Probably not, given you’re a disingenuous piece of work, Mr. Joyce.

If this really is the way that you all think, and thanks to Talk Radio, it is clear that “conservatives” (I do not believe that Rod Dreher or David Frum or Daniel Larison deserve the company of the knee jerk reactionaries who gleefully act in mindless concert) value conformity above thinking, confusion above clarity, and mega-dittoing over having an active life of ideas, interests, and passion.

He begins by admitting that Rod Dreher, David Frum, and Daniel Larison aren’t “conservatives” like the rest of us.  And, as it turns out, I agree with him on that point.  But then, I don’t think of them as being at all conservative or even Republican.  They might have been at one time, but they’ve spent so much time working for left-wing media outfits that whatever conservative values they might have once held have long since fallen by the wayside.

But let’s get back to Mr, Joyce.  Because we all seem to be agreeing with each other, we’re mindless drones.  We just stew in the echo chamber, valuing our conformity rather than thinking and stuff.

You know, that’s funny, because I don’t recall the right coming up with something akin to Journo-list, do you?  I don’t recall the right issuing daily “talking points memos,” do you?

If you want to talk about people espousing mindless chatter, let’s discuss your pals on the left, Mr. Joyce, shall we?  How about the media who convicted George Zimmerman for murdering poor, angelic Trayvon Martin, claiming he was clearly the aggressor, because he didn’t have any wounds on his face.  (Even though he did.)  Or that he was a white man who shot a black child, until it turned out he wasn’t exactly what you’d call white, so then he was a “white Hispanic.”  It was the disingenuous media of the left plastering a picture of a 12-year-old Trayvon all over the news, rather than use a more recent image.  All to try to make him appear to be an innocent victim.  All to sell a narrative of what a bunch of racists white people are.  The truth be damned.  A man’s life be damned.  All to sell the leftist agenda.

Or how about all the stories the leftist media refuses to cover or only begrudgingly covers, because those stories, too, don’t advance their political agenda.  Fast and Furious?  Missing and Meh.  The half billion in taxpayer dollars that went to prop up Solyndra for an additional 18 months before the company went bankrupt?  Yawn.   (And Queen Nancy thinks it’s just fine for the President to play a craps game with the taxpayers’ money.  Why not?)  The administration’s attacks on the Catholic Church and people of faith who don’t want public money spent on birth control?  What?  What do you mean that’s a violation of the First Amendment?

But we sure do hear all about how weird Romney’s Mormon faith is, don’t we?  Or how weird it is that Ann Romney spends her own money to practice “horse ballet.”

Please!  You want to talk about mindless lemmings parroting garbage?  The left does it every single day.

…and mega-dittoing over having an active life of ideas, interests, and passion.

Isn’t it cute how he feigns concern that we’re just wasting our lives blogging about stuff “too silly for words” rather than going out and getting a life?  Why can’t you people find real things to talk about and care about instead of blogging from your mommy’s basement.  Oh, wait… that’s Brett Kimberlin, isn’t it?

If you want to pretend ignorance of why the Brett Kimberlin story matters, Mr. Joyce, you certainly may.  It’s a free country, and you’re entitled to your opinion.  You even have the right to spread your opinion as far and as wide as you want.  Even if it’s the stupidest shit anybody ever peddled.  But let’s not pretend that your ideas come from a place where you’ve spent hours, days, weeks, or years thinking about and debating over what the Constitution means, because I’m pretty sure you haven’t.  If you had, you’d understand why the Kimberlin story matters.  You’d be appalled that some guy is contorting the law to use it as a weapon against anyone he disagrees with, all to shut them up.

And if you’d ever spent even a few hours thinking about the implications of the leftist agenda, then you’d know how utterly devoid of original ideas that agenda is.  All the left has — all it’s ever had — is collectivism and totalitarianism, all swaddled up in the blankets of concern for the less fortunate or “oppressed” — be they the poor, minorities, gays, women, unions, or anyone else deemed a victim group.  And the answer always seems to be more government, more control, more money confiscated from the hardworking to be redistributed to those deemed less fortunate.  Even when we daily hear how wasteful that government is with our money; it never seems to sink in that the government will ALWAYS waste our money.

And anyone who disagrees and dares to tell it like it is?  They get shut up and shut down, all in the name of “civility.”  We now have a President whose campaign is encouraging Americans to report anyone who says anything that might be critical of him.  He’s been peddling this “if you hear something you need to report it” schtick since 2009.  What is this, Soviet Russia?  We’re supposed to be suspicious of our neighbors and report them if they say anything that might be unkind about the President?

Well, Mr, Joyce, would you like to know what you and yours can do with your civility?

We’re not going to shut up until you take us all away or you shut down the internet.  Got it?  And if you don’t like it, do what all Americans in past generations did when faced with speech they didn’t like: don’t read/listen to it or make fun of it.  Shutting us up is what losers do, because they know they can’t win a fair and open debate.

Update: Stacy McCain blogs about the Hogberg article, along with the meta topic of the traffic he’s getting from this story.

Where’s the Media? Do We Really Have to Ask That Question?

Stacy McCain says:

In the fall of 1988, when convicted terrorist Brett Kimberlin was still locked up in federal prison and claiming to have sold dope to GOP vice presidential candidate Dan Quayle, every political reporter in the country wanted to write about Kimberlin. In his 1996 book, Mark Singer recounts how National Public Radio reporter Nina Totenberg spoke to Kimberlin two or three times every day in late October and early November 1988.

So why, 24 years later, are Nina Totenberg and the rest of the elite media ignoring what their old friend’s been up to lately? Tom Blumer of Newsbusters asks, “Where Is the Establishment Press?”

I think we all know why the mainstream media doesn’t want to touch this story with a ten-foot pole: because it would put on display for all to see their lack of journalistic ethics and their penchant for committing journalistic malpractice.

They made Kimberlin what he is today: utterly respectable and respected on the left, because he holds the proper beliefs about not eating things with faces, transcendental meditation, and the importance of wearing ugly-ass shoes which conform to the shape of your foot.  No worries about people he’s directly or indirectly responsible for killing.  No concern for all the lives he’s destroyed while engaged in drug trafficking or planting bombs around town.  Nope — all sins are forgiven, as long as he hates the proper people (anyone who disagrees with him or anyone the media hates).

It seems that among our friends on the left, as long as you surround yourself with cheap “virtue,” i.e., holding an attitude which the left deems to prove that one “cares” about things deeply — caring about energy conservation, caring about those poor suffering animals who are mistreated by big Agri-business, caring about being “spiritual” but not necessarily religious — then you get a free pass for committing actual sins.  Because, after all, who among us is perfect?  So you got yourself all wound up about a pre-teen girl — who hasn’t?  So you allegedly had the woman who tried to stop you from diddling her granddaughter killed — who wouldn’t, if they found themselves in the same situation?  So you planted bombs without any regard of who could be injured or killed, just to get the cops off your back — well, that’s just boyish exuberance.  Heck!  Why should anyone hold you responsible for that?

The media and the left have happily used him as a weapon against us, and they still are.  THAT’S why they are turning a blind eye to whatever thuggish behavior he’s engaged in.  He’s still doing exactly what they’ve encouraged him to do for the past 20-odd years, ever since they listened to his every word back in 1988 when he made his bogus allegations against Dan Quayle.