Wednesday, August 29, 2012

MSNBC's Betrayal of the Liberal Left

For the last several years many of my friends on the Left, both on Twitter and in the Blogosphere have decried the polarizing bias they see nightly on the FOX News Network.  Fox leans right and, occasionally, falls overboard on the starboard side of the ship.  Occasionally this bias extends in to the news programs as well.

Naturally these same Progressives and Liberals watch MSNBC and especially rejoice in the Liberal Glow of MSNBC's Primetime line-up. While still condemning the bias on Fox News, they love the fact that there is a left leaning alternative.

Unfortunately MSNBC betrays its viewers nightly with a horrific mixture of mis-reporting, false memes and outright lies.  They believe, I think incorrectly, that such overboard bias to the left is their only hope of getting television ratings and more advertising dollars.

As a champion of Liberal causes, I want more from my network.  I want honesty, honor, strict discipline, high journalist standards and an unrelenting search for the truth.

For critics to say that MSNBC is simply a mirror of Fox News is the ultimate indictment, a true measure of their total failure.

Sadly, MSNBC can't even live up to that mediocre standard.  Fox is a shining beacon of journalistic integrity compared to MSNBC.

Last night was the first night of the coverage of the Republican National Convention.  For Liberals and Progressives there is much to compare, contrast and even condemn.  So why not do that?  Are we incapable of wining a fair argument?

Republicans have very little minority support.  There were, indeed, few people of color in the delegations or on the floor.  So why did MSNBC feel the need to edit out every single speech delivered by a person of color?  Some of those speeches were important.  Several were electrifying!

MSNBC eliminated the speech of former Democratic Rep. Artur Davis, a black Alabaman who had actually seconded the nomination of President Barack Obama at the 2008 Democratic Convention!  This was an important speech by an important news maker.  It was also an electrifying speech that brought the crowd to its feet!

Not content to overlook one person of color, MSNBC bypassed them all. Gone from their coverage was Mia Love, a rising superstar in Republican politics. Mia is unique. She is a Black Mormon and a candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives from Utah.

Even if you somehow use the excuse that she was a minor player at the convention, how do you not broadcast the speech of Ted Cruz, a Latino American who will be the next Senator from Texas?  

This kind of reverse racism doesn't happen by accident. The executives at MSNBC decided they needed to support their false meme of racism in the Republican Party by purposefully hiding these key minority superstars in the Republican ranks. MSNBC's coverage demanded only whites be allowed to speak.  

Someone at MSNBC decided that we Liberals can't handle the truth.  We must be shielded from the small edges of color that actually are in the Republican Party.

Rachel Maddow owes us an apology.  MSNBC owes its viewers an apology.  

If there is any good news from last night's embarrassment it is that no one was watching.  Thank goodness they were watching Fox News, which actually covered the Convention with a reasonable amount of integrity and honor.


FNC: 6,878,804 viewers (1,679,763 in 25-54)
NBC: 4,770,050 viewers (1,725,282 in 25-54)
CBS: 3,118,927 viewers (938,237 in 25-54)
ABC: 2,862,656 viewers (920,346 in 25-54)
CNN: 1,473,885 viewers (413,467 in 25-54)
MSNBC: 1,468,348 viewers (411,738 in 25-54)

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Truths We Dare Not Discuss

The low light of Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney's gaff filled summer European trip was his praise of Israeli culture in its contribution to Israel's success when compared to the relative poor success of the Palestinians.

Instantly Romney was condemned by every Democrat politician for his insensitivity, prejudice and ignorance.  Romney backed down and apologized and clarified his comments so as not to offend anyone's sensibilities.

Romney should never have apologized. The very sad truth is that Romney was right.  The Jewish culture is powerful, strong and productive. It's tightly knit and based on incredibly strong family units and powerful traditions.  Because of this amazing culture Jewish minorities have flourished through some of the more horrific periods in our world's history.

It also has nothing to do with my essay today.

But I must talk about the role of culture in any society's success, especially economic minorities in our society.  We also need to talk, once again, about the fact the government doesn't work.  Almost all government programs are failures filled with huge waste, leaden bureaucracy and inadvertent social engineering that affect our culture, generally for the worse.

Our love of humanity, concern for the poor and desire to protect children have created welfare programs that have enslaved a significant portion of our society.  As our population sinks further and further into poverty our initial urge is to increase our welfare to the poor.  Yet we are not improving the situation precisely because we are not allowed to ever address any cultural issues.

Our entire American culture is based on freedom.  We cannot tell other people how to live.  The evolution of our society now has removed the stigma of divorce and the stigma our unwed parenthood.  At the same time it has encouraged women to seek out careers and fulfillment outside of marriage and motherhood.  All of these things are good for the individual and individual freedom.

Our welfare programs have supported, even encouraged, this evolution toward freedom and independence for women.  This would be a good thing, if it actually worked.  As part of the welfare process, we have partially removed the necessity of marriage and the involvement of men in the family unit.  For example we established the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children, popularly known as WIC, SNAP, the old food stamp program, medicaid and other programs step in when the father or mother fails to provide support.

Of course none of these programs are sufficient and women struggle to balance jobs and child-rearing.  In addition drugs ravage families leaving children to be raised by grandparents or by themselves.

In spite of all these programs children are going hungry.  Even though 45,753,078 people receive food stamps, the highest in US history, all too many parents simply fail to care for their children.  Neglect and lack of personal responsibility are the biggest problem and it's the one problem we are never allowed to discuss.  No politician dares to cross that line.

Today's tragic story comes from Chester Township, Pennsylvania.  Here's the story.  Read it and weep:
Mom vows to keep feeding needy kids from her driveway despite city crackdown
A Pennsylvania woman has vowed to continue doling out free lunches to children in her hardscrabble neighborhood, even though officials there have threatened to fine her $600 a day. 
Angela Prattis, 41, was ordered by the Chester Township Council to wind down the makeshift dining room she runs in the driveway of her modest home during the summer for the hungry kids who come to her daily in search of a good meal. Under pressure from the community, the local leaders agreed to let Prattis finish her mission this summer, but told her she would need a zoning variance to resume the operation next summer. 
“I’m going to continue to feed the children,” Prattis told “I’m just doing this for the kids. I don’t want a big fight. “I just want to be in right standing with the town,” added Prattis, who feeds 20 or more kids on some days.
The mother of four says she serves up the lunches while the kids are out of school because many are too poor to get good lunches at home. 
Prattis gets the food from the Philadelphia Archdiocese, which makes daily deliveries of pre-packaged lunches, drinks and snacks to her doorstep. She pointed out that the archdiocese required her to take a preparatory class focusing on nutrition — and other essentials — before serving kids. “I’m not working with some fly-by-night operation,” she maintained. 
“This isn’t a working-class neighborhood,” she quipped. “It’s a hardworking-class neighborhood.” 
The neighborhood kids enjoy the lunches and benefit from the nutrition, she said. “We have tons of children, here,” Prattis said. “There’s a lady who baby-sits a bunch of kids and she brings them around because the parents can’t afford to have them in day care and feed them at the same time. 
“We had a nasty storm last Wednesday, and I only set up one table because I didn’t think the kids would come in the pouring rain,” she said, before adding, “They all came. I served 20 children in the pouring rain.” 
Poverty certainly exists in Jewish communities, Arab communities, Irish communities and every community. These problems can happen in any culture.  But in many cultures within our melting pot society, the outcomes described in the article above are extremely rare.  

The divorce rate and the rate of unwed mothers also vary wildly between cultures.  So do high school graduation rates, college attendance and average incomes.  

My current home state of Mississippi is the most obese state in the nation, Colorado, the state of my birth, is the most fit.   Mississippi's tradition of rich, fattening fried food and soul food greatly contributes to this outcome.  There is a mighty difference between cultures in Mississippi and Colorado.

Mississippi also ranks near the bottom in health care, birth to unwed mothers and education.  Our cultural background also prevents sex education in most public schools.

Culture makes a huge difference.  It must be a topic for open discussion and debate.  As Liberals we are quick to condemn Mississippi's religious leaders from their failure to provide sex education.  But we are never allowed to discuss or even mention the crisis of single parent households.  That would be judgmental.

We want our children educated about sex, homosexuality, alternative lifestyles.  But we cannot discuss parenting, parental responsibility, child rearing or any type of personal responsibility.

It would be funny if it weren't so tragic.

I do not have the answers to these problems. But we are not helping our children be failing to even allow discussion of the underlying issues.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Harry Reid

Sadly, there is a thin line between dishonesty and illegality.  I'm guessing Senator Harry Reid (D-NV) hasn't crossed that line.  But if you or I or anyone in the private sector had done the things he has done, we would be in jail.

Just one small example from The National Review Online article by Betsy Woodruff

"On December 20, 2005, [Harry Reid] invested$50,000 to $100,000 in the Dow Jones U.S. Energy Sector Fund (IYE), which closed that day at $29.15. The companies whose shares it held included ExxonMobil, ChevronTexaco, and ConocoPhillips. When he made a partial sale of his shares on August 19, 2008, during congressional recess, IYE closed at $41.82. Just a month later, on September 17, Reid was working to bring to the floor a bill that the Joint Committee on Taxation said would cost oil companies — including those in the fund — billions of dollars in taxes and regulatory fees. The bill passed a few days later, and by October 10, IYE’s shares had fallen by 42 percent, to $24.41, for a host of reasons."
Read the entire article.

Harry survived the last election because his opponent, Tea Party upstart Sharon Angle was sadly incompetent.  The voters will ultimately decide Harry's fate, but I wouldn't be surprised to see him retire before the next election.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

"They’re going to put y’all back in chains"

"They’re going to put y’all back in chains."

These are the exact words spoken by Vice President Joe Biden, addressing a largely Black audience Tuesday during a campaign speech in Danville, Virginia.

Obama deputy campaign manager Stephanie Cutter said Monday the campaign has “no problem with those comments,” in an interview with Andrea Mitchell.

I personally have a problem with those extremely racist and disgusting comments.

I will not be voting for Barack Obama or Joe Biden this November.  These are not the people I want governing or representing our country.

Monday, August 06, 2012

The Headline You Never Saw

Everyone saw this Headline:

Gunman kills Six at Sikh Temple in Wisconsin

The entire nation (and most of the world) was shocked this weekend by the senseless assault on a Sikh Temple in Oak Creek, Wisconsin.  Every cable news channel quickly dropped weekend programming and broadcast full time from the site of this tragedy.  Twitter literally burst at the seams with reports, rumors and completely false accusation (all aimed at the right, from Progressive Zealots on the left who all but claimed Michelle Bachmann pulled the trigger).

The world was at once captivated and horrified.

However, no one saw this headline:

Twelve Murdered in Chicago This Weekend

The headline above never appeared anywhere until my posting, but it is completely true.  It represents just one small piece of the massive American Genocide being ignored by the press.  Because each murder happened individually (or in small groups) and because each is attributed to "gangland violence" they are ignored and forgotten, never reported outside of the neighborhood communities.

Worse, there will be no follow-up.  We won't know anything about the killers.  Many will, in fact, never be identified.  Many will kill again..... and again.  Some will actually murder more people than the famous serial killers.  They will go unrecognized because they are taking lives slowly in drive-by shootings and random acts of violence.

I keep coming back to Chicago because there is an excellent website, Redeye Chicago Com that tracks every murder.  

But these murders are being duplicated in every major metropolitan area in America.  Well over one hundred black teen and twenty something boys and girls die every weekend.  No one reports this tragedy.

I'll finish this tragic entry in my long and growing blog series with a tiny portion of a gut wrenching article in the Chicago Sun Times written by Mary Mitchell, Chronic grief overtaking black communities

It used to be when a teen was killed under any circumstances, mothers would snatch up their children and keep them inside as if they were trying to hide them from the Angel of Death.
Mourners would stop by the grieving family’s house carrying trays of food and just sit quietly. But the prolonged killings of young black people have resulted in a macabre cultural shift when it comes to the grieving process.
Mourners leave empty liquor bottles and cigarette packages on the spot where the victim died. They order T-shirts with an image of the fallen and distribute them to the dead youth’s family and friends. They string up balloons like they are getting ready for the family reunion picnic.
The Rev. Oscar Crear, pastor of New Tiberia Missionary Baptist Church at 2156 W. Wellington, is one of the pastors called upon to perform funeral services for young people who have no church home.
“People struggle for a long time after a violent death,” Crear told me during a recent interview.
“A lot of young people are suffering from chronic grief. They are not handling this very well.”
Some ask, “ ‘How can I bury my son this week and bury your son the following week?’ ” Crear said.
“When people go to funeral after funeral it impacts them.”

Thursday, August 02, 2012

The Difference Between Republicans and Democrats

I've written this before.  Probably a lot.  It is one of the greatest oddities of our democracy.

The difference between Republicans and Democrats:

Democrats LOVE laws, they love to write and pass them at the drop of a hat, but they HATE enforcing them.

Republicans HATE laws and want as few on the books as possible but, once they are passed, DEMAND that the be enforced to the letter of the law.

This classic dilemma is being played out today with President Obama's new "guidelines" to the Immigration and Customs Enforcement.  He has basically done what most Democrats always do, ask law enforcement officers or the courts to ignore and not enforce the law.

First it's important to point out that I like and support the DREAM ACT and feel we need a reasonable way to deal with immigration in this country.  Certainly we should not punish children who were forced to come to the United States by their parents when they were children or even infants.

President Obama feels it would be impossible to pass such a law through Congress, so his answer is..... just don't enforce existing laws.

This is a double dilemma because the President is charged with the enforcement of this law.  At a different time there might be calls for his Impeachment over this gross failure to fulfill his duties,  However, the election is just days away and the public will get the ultimate decision on Obama's actions.

But the second of the double dilemma's is more serious.  His directives are so lax and so unclear it is causing a major, extremely negative, reaction among ICE agents.  They are being forbidden from doing their job, even when their lives are in danger.  

Basically, all illegals who are not wanted for serious crimes as simply being set free, regardless of age or situation.  ICE agents are being fined, suspended ofr doing what was, until a few weeks ago, their jobs.

Here is a snippet from a longer report from Todd Starnes: ICE Agents: Morale is in the Toilet
Morale among Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents is at an all-time low more than a month after the Obama administration announced major changes to the nation’s immigration enforcement policy, according to the head of a national agency representing thousands of agents. 
“Morale is in the toilet right now,” said Chris Crane, president of the National ICE Council. “Most of the guys out in the field are just in an uproar.” President Obama’s policy allows the federal government to use “prosecutorial discretion” to allow younger illegal immigrants to stay in the country and get work permits. 
Critics called it backdoor amnesty, but the administration said it stops short of granting illegals citizenship. 
“They call it discretion but it’s not our discretion,” Crane told Fox News. “We have no discretion.” Crane said a case involving a veteran ICE agent is a perfect illustration. The agent arrested an illegal who was not a “primary target.” The agent’s superior officers ordered the illegal released – even though he did not meet the criteria listed by the Dept. of Homeland Security. The officer refused to follow orders and is now facing a three day suspension. 
The 35-year-old illegal immigrant with ten traffic violations was released.
The problem is that we have a President who is legislatively incompetent and lacks basic leadership skills.  The back door is always the President's favorite door. He can't work with Congress.  He has no idea how our Government works, even after four rather horrific years.

I'm concerned his second term will not be any better.

We need fair laws and clear, strong, impartial enforcement.  We need the best of both Republicans and Democrats.

UPDATE 8/4/2012: John Nolte is married to a legal immigrant from Mexico and supports The Dream Act and also supports an improved and streamlined path to legal immigration.  

But John joins me in condemning President Obama for his failure to enforce the law and Obama's failure to seek  a legislative solution to this problem, in spite of overwhelming public support.  Read his passionate essay here: $465 FOR AMNESTY: OBAMA TO MAKE ILLEGALS LEGAL BEFORE ELECTION DAY