Uncommon Sense

politics and society are, unfortunately, much the same thing

Does University culture think racism is sometimes okay?

The University of Alabama recently found itself undesirably in the spotlight again when an administrator of high standing lost his job at the institution. The essence of the matter appears to be that Dr. Jamie R. Riley, dean of students and assistance vice president of student life, resigned from UA in a mutual agreement with the institution after some allegedly racist social media comments of his publically surfaced.

The Tuscaloosa News has two stories about the incident published Sep. 13 and Sep. 18, both written by Ed Enoch. The earlier story focuses on student reaction to Riley’s resignation, the latter focuses on the UA Faculty Senate’s reaction. While some details on the initial comments are mentioned, neither story focuses much attention on the controversial comments that serve as the catalyst for the entire situation.

In the Sep. 13 story, the reader can see some of Riley’s twitter comments pertaining to a politically loaded view of the American flag (though screenshots would have been more helpful since Riley’s twitter account is now visible only to approved followers), in which Riley expresses his opinion as if it were the opinion of ALL black Americans. (screenshots taken from the Breitbart article that originally broke this story)

Riley Twitter

Surely not all black people think of the American flag the way Riley does. In fact, some in the black community consider the American flag is a symbol of emancipation, as opposed to a different symbol (the Confederate flag) flown in defense of systemic racism.

Another of Riley’s contentious tweets claimed white people can’t experience racism and therefore have no right to an opinion on the matter.

Riley Twitter

Imagine, if you will, a white person making racially insensitive remarks about the black community and being given the benefit of the doubt with defensive comments such as “the context is unclear.” This is the Tuscaloosa News’ odd reaction to Riley’s racially combative comments. According to common understanding, if someone is discriminated against because of their race, that is racism. And that can happen to anyone, because hate and prejudice are not limited to one group or another. And we all know this.

The Sep. 18 article mentions only “systemic racism” and “police use of force” for context on Riley’s statements. In what may be a subtle effort to protect Riley, neither article makes mention of further comments he made, some of which border on the conspiratorial, such as his suggestion movies about slavery may actually be a means of putting black people “in their place”:

Riley Twitter

In the scenario where a university administrator makes racially disparaging remarks aimed not at merely an individual or two, but at an entire group of people, and he mysteriously resigns from his job soon after, one would think the nature of the initial comments would be the focus of subsequent reporting, rather than being glossed over. In this case, the reporting and those interviewed for these two articles instead show an odd focus on the lack of information produced by the UA administration about Riley’s resignation, as if his contentious comments themselves have little to do with the situation. To borrow from a statement of Dr. Riley, is it that hard to see the correlation?

Observe some of the interview material selected in the first Tuscaloosa News article focusing on student reactions:

“This is complicated, and I don’t have all the answers,” said Andre Denham, BFSA president and an associate professor in the College of Education.

Denham mentioned free speech concerns from faculty and staff whose academic work involves topics discussed by Riley or those who actively share their opinions on social media.

“The university not clarifying what has happened is making folks a little nervous,” he said.

Denham took questions from the students in the Ferguson Student Center ballroom. The students who spoke described frustration at the lack of information and inaccessibility to top administrators.

One of the students described frustration with university’s pledge to be a diverse climate and the seeming contradiction of a black administrator forced out for expressing his opinion.

Some of the students were upset an administrator whom they admired was “taken down” for being truthful and questioned what it meant for free speech and their sense of security on a majority-white campus.

Did you notice that gold nugget about Riley being “truthful”? Were there no students interviewed who were concerned about the apparent racism of Riley’s comments? A controversy such as this is controversial mainly because not everyone agrees with the comments or actions made. Clearly there is disagreement in the UA community about Riley’s quick resignation and the silence of UA administration on it. Was there no disagreement about the “truth” of Riley’s comments? In the American public, in general, there is strong disagreement about ideas like those Riley posted.

But the question of a double standard is not missed by the Tuscaloosa News. Another student is quoted who thinks there might be more than one set of rules in play:

(Freshman Kelvon) Malik argued the situation would be different if Riley was not black.

“If it was a white man, it would be totally different,” Malik said.

I should say Malik is right. If it was a white man whose social media footprint revealed racist comments, it would indeed be quite different. It’s likely that a white man in Riley’s position would also have mysteriously resigned, but conspicuously precipitated by (rather than followed by) a public outcry (calling for his ouster) and there would have been no worries about free speech or academic freedom. And how can we know this? Precedent gives us some insight.

There is another Tuscloosa News story from April 2018 in which an alleged white supremacist had been invited to speak by a UA student organization. That student organization had its status as a recognized UA group withdrawn and the event in question was cancelled. Apparently there was no one in the UA community who had concerns about endangering free speech or academic freedom, and none when UA president Stuart Bell encouraged students to avoid the event before it was cancelled. At least no such concerns were mentioned in the News report. Instead of including student interviews or comments from the Faculty Senate about the matter, the writer chose to seek outside the university community and quote the leftwing activist group Southern Poverty Law Center which described the speaker as:

“a courtly presenter of ideas that most would describe as crudely white supremacist — a kind of modern-day version of the refined but racist colonialist of old.”

In the case of a speaker identified by a politically partisan organization as a white supremacist, the UA administration and supposedly the UA community at large seem to agree that preventing the speaker from expressing his opinion was the right course of action. But with Dr. Riley, the community and a local newspaper apparently focus instead on “frustration and anxiety on campus with the perception that Riley was forced out for expressing his opinion…” The former incident seemed quite simple, whereas the latter is “complicated”.

Similarly, there were two other incidents in 2018 (in January and in March of that year) where a UA student was found, via social media video, to be spouting racially offensive language. In both cases the students in question quickly turned out to be no longer enrolled at the university. Nowhere in the local news reporting or in Editorials was there an outcry of concern about free speech or academic freedom, or a lack of information about the change in status of the students. The reporting focused merely on the content of the racially offensive statements, not on procedural matters. These incidents likewise seemed to be quite uncomplicated, as with the cancelled white supremacist speaking event.

Returning to Riley’s case, the UA Faculty Senate issued what seems to be a politically calculated response to his resignation. As reported by the Tuscaloosa News:

In the statement, the Faculty Senate said the silence from administration has perpetuated the university’s reputation as non-inclusive and discriminatory; does not align with its strategic plan commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion;

Faculty Senate criticizes UA’s silence on dean’s departure and raises questions about UA’s commitment to freedom of speech and academic Freedom.

The Faculty Senate also called on the administration to publicly and unequivocally affirm the university’s “commitment to creating and maintaining a safe climate that supports and encourages students, faculty, and staff to exercise their right to academic freedom and free speech, to denounce inequality and racism, and promote social justice.”

The instances of the two students and white supremacist show UA leadership had acted in a way that apparently the UA community thought to be apt and responsible. There is the appearance of a different standard in place for Dr. Riley, especially given the Faculty Senate’s absurd implication there has been no progress against racism at the university.

In 2018 an editorial at the Tuscaloosa News shows a more level headed approach to dealing with these matters. The editorial titled “When racism surfaces, a response is required” addressed the two student incidents of that year. It mentions no meetings of the student community or any other UA group questioning the actions of UA leadership or expressing concern about free speech or academic freedom. As the article put it:

In both instances, the university swiftly condemned the behavior and reiterated its commitment to inclusion. That was the right thing to do, of course.

The editorial rightly points out the university could have done nothing to prevent “disgusting social media posts” of the two students and the appropriate thing to do is to swiftly address and disavow those actions. It also points out “(President Stuart) Bell was correct to remind the community that the university condemns racist behavior.” UA leadership also quickly disavowed the white supremacist invited to speak on campus, evidently for the same reasons.

In one more Tuscaloosa News editorial titled No room for hate here, no tolerance for haters, the editor addresses the first 2018 racial incident. The title implies much of what the article is about. In it, the editor esteems UA leadership for swiftly responding to and disavowing the hate-filled comments. The editor ends the piece with what could easily be taken for a general consensus among American higher education culture (referring to the perpetrator by name for the incident in question):

There should be no room for hate here and no tolerance for those who would come here to foment it.

Yes, it was good to see reports that Barber has apologized, but ultimately her words did more harm to her than to anyone else. We hope she truly comes to understand how horribly wrong they were.

One lesson she should now understand is that her right to free speech doesn’t include a right to avoid consequences for her words.

Ah, there is no right to avoid consequences for one’s own words. Some evidently feel Dr. Riley’s controversial comments were hateful, both toward a group of people (based on their race) and toward the United States, but you might not know that if the Tuscaloosa News were your only source. If equality is really one of our goals as a society, why should he be treated any differently than a white person found to be making racially offensive comments? Given the UA community’s disapproving reaction to the Riley incident (disapproving of UA administration actions, rather than of Riley’s comments themselves), it almost appears that racism is sometimes okay.


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It was a ‘border crisis’ in 2014

original article: Media had no problem calling it a border ‘crisis’ in 2014 under Obama
January 10, 2019 by Eddie Scarry

Both Democrats and most news media are yelling as often as they can that there is no border “crisis,” even though they spent the last year telling everyone there was and even though they had no problem explicitly calling it a “crisis” in 2014, when the situation was the exact same as it is now.

“We now have an actual humanitarian crisis on the borer that only underscores the need to drop the politics and fix our immigration system once and for all,” then-President Barack Obama said in the Rose Garden in 2014. “In recent weeks we’ve seen a surge of unaccompanied children arrive at the border, brought here and to other countries by smugglers and traffickers.”

This is no different than what President Trump said from the Oval Office on Tuesday.

“Last month, 20,000 migrant children were illegally brought into the United States — a dramatic increase,” he said. “These children are used as human pawns by vicious coyotes and ruthless gangs.”

The only difference is how the media are covering it.

The Washington Post on July 12, 2014, referred to “the current crisis on the Southwest border, where authorities have apprehended tens of thousands of unaccompanied Central American children since October …” The story’s lead author was Karen Tumulty, now a columnist for the Post, who completely dismissed the idea of any crisis at the border this week.

“We are headed to this extraordinary situation where the president declares a state of emergency, which does not exist, and the law does not really explain what we do if the president manufactures an emergency,” she said Tuesday on MSNBC.

On June 5, 2014, a New York Times article began, “This is what it looks like when an immigration system is overwhelmed by tens of thousands of women and children from Central America.” It further noted that, “The Federal Emergency Management Agency has been ordered to coordinate efforts to contain the crisis.”

The Times editorial board this week, however, said that the crisis is actually “in the Oval Office.”

The border crisis didn’t change between 2014 and now. The only thing that changed was who’s in the White House and how the media are reporting on it.

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Does Kathy Griffin show leftists have more in common with Islamic extremists than with America?

Kathy Griffin’s “edgy” comedic style has brought her into the spot light once again. This time she finds it “funny” and a work of “art” to display a severed head of President Trump. Incendiary speech is one thing the president is often criticized for, speech that supposedly incites violence. Apparently, we are supposed to ignore the actual violence inflicted upon city after city by leftwing antifa activists (who ironically employ violence, hate, and intolerance in the effort to fight against violence, hate, and intolerance). Are we also supposed to ignore the incendiary nature of Griffin’s shock art? I mean, if warning about the very real possibility of ISIS infiltrating our nation is the same as “violence” why shouldn’t Griffin’s so-called art qualify as the same thing?

0530-kathy-griffin-graphic-donald-trump-head-cut-off-tyler-sheilds-9

This is quite different from that Missouri rodeo clown back in 2013 who got fired for wearing an Obama mask. Not only was that guy banned for life by the Missouri State Fair Commission, that organization also demanded sensitivity training from the rodeo association.

And remember all that talk early on in President Obama’s first term about how people should respect the presidency? Remember how almost any criticism of Obama was branded as racist? Remember when Chris Rock said President Obama was like the “dad of the country” and “our boss”?

Yeah, that’s the opposite of how Trump has been treated. Granted, Trump troubles me in many ways. So did Obama. But I never said Obama wasn’t my president. Today, instead hearing how the president is our boss or the dad of the country, the leftwing mantra has been “not my president”. Harvard University recently did a study on anti-Trump news media bias in his first 100 days and there was shown to be substantially more bias against Trump than there was against the previous three presidents. According to the study, even Fox News (a network that is supposedly a shill for Trump) had a 52% negative coverage rate. Are we supposed to think CNN’s 93% negative coverage rate makes them more fair and balanced than Fox News? I don’t.

This also brings to mind a curious thing about the general political environment in the United States. Just as any rightwing criticism of President Obama was labeled racist, likewise any criticism of Islamic extremism is labeled Islamophobic. The frequent terrorist acts reported in the news all over the world are typically treated as isolated incidents, whereas the isolated mean things Europeans or Americans sometimes do to Muslims is branded as an epidemic of Islamophobia or Xenophobia.

Leftists went out of their way to defend Obama on any and everything he ever did (even defending his lies that were admitted to be lies), and they do the same for Islamic extremism. Why should we pretend Democrats know the difference between Islam and Islamic extremism? When they criticize Republicans for criticizing Islamic extremism, Democrats suddenly forget that distinction. Democrats prefer to accuse Republicans of thinking all Muslims are terrorists simply because Republicans condemn terrorism. When they do that, it is Democrats who fail to recognize the distinction. When Republicans say “we need to protect ourselves against terrorism” Democrats hear “we need to protect ourselves against Muslims”.

Republicans are well aware of the difference between terrorists and peaceful Muslims who just want to live their lives, such as Dr. M. Zuhdi Jasser who frequently speaks out against Islamic extremism and Ayaan Hirsi Ali, a feminist activist and victim of FGM who also speaks out against Islamic extremism. Republicans recognize both of them as 1) from Muslim origins and 2) not terrorists. Yet both are branded as Islamophobic by the political left.

I can’t help but notice the overwhelming impulse liberals have to defend Islamic extremists, to invite them into Western countries, and extend the hand of friendship. When a terrorist act kills innocent civilians, rest assured leftists will rally to sympathize with MUSLIMS and act all apologetic, as if Westerners were the aggressors and not the victims (making me wonder, if terrorism has nothing to do with Islam, why do liberals reach out to Muslims after a terrorist attack? Is this another example that liberals fail to distinguish between the two?). At the same time, these same liberals condemn the political right here at home as terrorists, racists, fascists, and bigots in every way. It seems to me western liberals identify more closely with Islamic extremists than they do with Western civilization. Just look at Kathy Griffin, holding that mock bloody, severed head of President Trump thinking she’s actually making a statement against hate, not realizing who she is mimicking.

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Some refugees prefer to stay home. Who knew?

In the present environment of American politics, some say bringing refugees to the U.S. is THE solution to the Syrian crisis. But there are other perspectives, such as the perspective of some refugees themselves.

 

This refugee from Syria expresses gratitude for America’s military action in response to the gas attack on Syrian civilians, which appear to be the work of Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad. He also mentions the fact he and his fellow refugees don’t want to be forced out of their homes and into some foreign country. Some in the American media, such as CNN’s Brooke Baldwin, fish for criticism of President Trump and his immigration policies when interviewing refugees. Debora Heine at PJ Media wrote on this story in CNN Narrative Fail: Syrian Refugee Slams Clinton, Obama; Praises Trump.

“With all due respect, with all due respect,” Kassem began. “I didn’t see each and every person who was demonstrating after the travel ban…. I didn’t see you three days ago when people were gassed to death….I didn’t see you in 2013 when 1,400 people were gassed to death. I didn’t see you raising your voice against President Obama’s inaction in Syria that left us refugees,” he said, completely deflating her expectations.

“If you really care about refugees, if you really care about helping us, please — help us stay here in our country,” he continued.

Others who have looked into immigration have reached a similar conclusion. Rather than play politics and act as if racism or xenophobia are the motivation, those who are willing to make an intellectually honest assessment of the crisis recognize immigration is not the solution the refugees need. Just like the Syrian refugee who wants help remaining in his home, Roy Beck shows good reasons to question the open immigration narrative by discussing the practical details that actually affect the people involved.

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Fake News: Media distorts Jeff Sessions’ comments on Mexican gangs

original article: Fake news: Media distorts Jeff Sessions’ speech about illegal alien gangs
April 12, 2017 by Carlos Garcia

U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions is being excoriated for supposedly using charged language against immigrants, but a closer look at the text of his speech shows that he is being misrepresented by some in the media.

In the speech to border guards Tuesday, Sessions referred to violent criminal gangs such as MS-13, or Mara Salvatrucha, and the infamous Zeta drug cartel, but some are applying his words to all immigrants. And while the word was in the prepared remarks, he omitted it in the actual speech, a detail lost to his critics.

Politico White House reporter Josh Dawsey tweeted this without the full context of the quote, “Sessions to border agents: ‘It is here, on this sliver of land, where we first take our stand against this filth.’”

Washington Post writer Dan Drezner tweeted about the quote, “Filth. He described illegal immigrants as ‘filth.’ Whatever your views on immigration that’s f**king embarrassing for a US official to say.” That was retweeted more than 3,700 times, while his retraction and apology only got slightly more than 100 retweets.

Chris Taylor of Mashable tweeted, “The Attorney General of the United States just called Mexican immigrants “filth.” But by all means, keep being outraged about United.”

But as Becket Adams of the Washington Examiner reported, not only was that phrase attributed to criminal gangs and not simply immigrants, but Sessions decided against using the word when he actually gave the speech.

“When we talk about MS-13 and the cartels, what do we mean?” Sessions asked in the speech. “We mean international criminal organizations that turn cities and suburbs into war-zones, that rape and kill innocent citizens and who profit by smuggling poison and other human beings across our borders. Depravity and violence are their calling cards, including brutal machete attacks and beheadings.”

The misquoted line followed, but without the word “filth.”

“It is here, on this sliver of land, on this border, where we first take our stand,” he proclaimed.

The false quote took a life on its own on social media:

Not all news outlets got it wrong, fortunately.

Sessions praised Trump in the speech for the precipitous drop in illegal border crossings that has been reported by law enforcement officials. Illegal crossings are reported to have dropped by 72% in the first few months of the year, to a figure not seen in 17 years.

Even Trump critic Jorge Ramos had to admit that the “Trump Effect” was probably saving the lives of those who were turning away from the perilous and dangerous trek northward to the U.S.-Mexico border.

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What does a progressive consider “righteous anger”?

Allison Stanger, the Middlebury College professor injured by protesters opposing Charles Murray’s appearance on campus, has something to say. The New York Times published her comments on the incident in an article titled Understanding the Angry Mob at Middlebury That Gave Me a Concussion.

Stanger has some straightforward and well justified criticism of the protesters, the extremely illiberal liberals supposedly fighting against hate (by using hate). And yet she also has an odd attitude about the whole thing. Stanger construes the hateful speech and hateful actions of the progressive protests as “righteous anger” and curiously proceeds to build a case showing the exact opposite.

Nearly half way into her article Stanger admits this “righteous anger” was in fact hate: “Most of the hatred was focused on Dr. Murray…” She proceeds to describe what is unavoidably understood as intimidation and terrorism as she states “I feared for my life.”

The problems only continue to mount. Stanger proceeds to describe how the well was poisoned long before Murray even showed up on campus.

Part of the problem was the furor that preceded the talk. This past month, as the campus uproar about Dr. Murray’s visit built, I was genuinely surprised and troubled to learn that some of my faculty colleagues had rendered judgment on Dr. Murray’s work and character without ever having read anything he has written.

Once the propaganda began, college progressives were simply uninterested in intellectual (or any other kind of) honesty.

Intelligent members of the Middlebury community — including some of my own students and advisees — concluded that Charles Murray was an anti-gay white nationalist from what they were hearing from one another, and what they read on the Southern Poverty Law Center website. Never mind that Dr. Murray supports same-sex marriage and is a member of the courageous “never Trump” wing of the Republican Party.

There is no excusing what happened at Middlebury, and those who prevented Charles Murray from speaking must be punished for violating college rules. But what the events at Middlebury made clear is that, regardless of political persuasion, Americans today are deeply susceptible to a renunciation of reason and celebration of ignorance. They know what they know without reading, discussing or engaging those who might disagree with them.

It’s true, as Stanger says, “People from both sides of the aisle reject calm logic, eager to embrace the alternative news that supports their prejudices” but we should note it is not the political right who is engaging in and celebrating violent protests: that is the hallmark of the modern political left.

Stanger honorably recommends “We must all be more rigorous in evaluating and investigating anger, or this pattern of miscommunication will continue on other college campuses.” But it would be good for her to take her own advice. Notice how she seems to have blindly embraced the anti-Trump narrative of the left.

Throughout an ugly campaign and into his presidency, President Trump has demonized Muslims as terrorists and dehumanized many groups of marginalized people. He declared the free press an enemy of the people…, and seems bent on dismantling the separation of powers and 230 years of progress this country has made toward a more perfect union. Much of the free speech he has inspired — or has refused to disavow — is ugly, and has already had ugly real-world consequences.

In an effort to “be more rigorous in evaluating and investigating anger” let’s take a closer look at Stanger’s allegations.

No one is claiming all Muslims are terrorists, while the vast majority of terrorist actions in the world today are in fact committed by Islamic extremists (or American progressives). To even acknowledge this plain fact garners the label “Islamophobic”. Why? Because over generalizing and making blanket accusations are fine if the target is Christianity or conservatism, but Islam is to be protected at all costs, even the cost of one’s own intellectual credibility.

Ignoring the influx of violent immigrants and imported gang violence (especially among states bordering Mexico) does no good for the American people despite the gains it provides to the political left vilifying those who acknowledge this. No one is claiming all immigrants are a danger. But pretending there is no danger is downright idiotic especially considering ISIS has bragged about infiltrating other countries with operatives posing as refugees (something that has actually happened).

The American “free press” has chosen sides in political conflict and it is absurd to deny this: it has been the case for decades. With very few exceptions they are an enemy of Trump and were nauseatingly fond (and protective) of Obama and Clinton (either of them). As a single piece of evidence: Stanger accuses Trump of being bent on dismantling the separation of powers and over two centuries of progress in the United States when that dishonor could easily be placed on Obama’s shoulders.

Also, it is common place for politicians to portray their agendas as the will of “the American people” so there no point in denying this when Trump brands the press as the enemy. It would be easier to reject his claims if the press weren’t so hell bent on pumping any and all criticisms and accusations Democrats throw at Trump when they worked so hard to refute or dismiss Obama’s critics.

And so what if a lot of the free speech of late has been ugly? Falsely accusing the political right of various forms of bigotry (something that has been done for decades) is also ugly, but that doesn’t stop the political left doing so. Stanger is doing that very thing even here in unquestioningly regurgitating the left’s narrative on Trump. Did you notice how Nazi comparisons were treated as distasteful when Obama was president but were perfectly fine when Bush was president, and are once again in vogue with president Trump?

Intentionally misconstruing the political right’s comments provides an excellent example for Stanger and the rest of the political left to “be more rigorous in evaluating and investigating anger”. With very few exceptions Stanger’s criticism of hate is an apt description of the common progressive, and even more apt of left wing activists. It looks like Jonathan Haidt is proven right once again.

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Media personality accidentally admits the purpose of news is to control what people think

original article: Mika Brzezinski — The Media’s Job Is To ‘Actually Control Exactly What People Think’
February 22, 2017 by Christian Datoc

Mika Brzezinski criticized President Trump for undermining the media’s role in controlling “what people think” on MSNBC Wednesday morning.

The “Morning Joe” host explained to the panel that Trump’s behavior is “dangerous.”

“He is trying to undermine the media and trying to make up his own facts,” she continued. “He could have undermined the messaging so much that he can actually control exactly what people think.”

“That is our job.”

watch the video

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The serial killer the media won’t talk about

original article: The American Serial Killer The Media Won’t Talk About: Kermit Gosnell
January 27, 2017 By The Federalist Staff

Dr. Kermit Gosnell was convicted of murdering four people, including three babies, and it is suspected that he also killed hundreds, if not thousands of others in his “House of Horrors” abortion clinic. Ann McElhinney and Phelim McAleer join the Federalist Radio Hour to discuss their book, “Gosnell: The Untold Story of America’s Most Prolific Serial Killer” and the upcoming film adaptation.

“He’d give the women drugs to make them give birth… the babies were born alive and then he would kill them by stabbing them with scissors,” McAleer said. “He’s in prison because he committed murder… his death toll goes back decades.”

McAleer and McElhinney have made a dramatic film telling the story and drama of Gosnell. “I think we felt a documentary wouldn’t have the same penetration in terms of story, and because the story was ignored by the media, people just don’t know about it,” McElhinney said.

click here to listen to the interview

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Hiding data is not how to prove something

original article: Why NYT Hid The Numbers For The ‘Hottest Year On Record’
January 18, 2017 Robert Tracinski

When you read a science report claiming that 2016 was the hottest year on record, you might expect that you will get numbers. And you would be wrong.

They say that mathematics is the language of science, which is a way of saying that science is quantitative. It is moved forward by numbers and measurements, not just by qualitative observations. “It seems hot out” is not science. Giving a specific temperature, measured by a specific process at a specific time, compared to other systematically gathered measurements—that is science.

So when you read an article proclaiming that, for the third year in a row, last year was the hottest year on record, you might expect that right up front you will get numbers, measurements, and a statistical margin of error. You know, science stuff. Numbers. Quantities. Mathematics.

And you would be wrong.

I just got done combing through a New York Times report titled, “Earth Sets a Temperature Record for the Third Straight Year.” The number of relevant numbers in this article is: zero.

We are not told what the average global temperature was, how much higher this is than last year’s record or any previous records, or what the margin of error is supposed to be on those measurements. Instead, we get stuff like this.

Marking another milestone for a changing planet, scientists reported on Wednesday that the Earth reached its highest temperature on record in 2016—trouncing a record set only a year earlier, which beat one set in 2014. It is the first time in the modern era of global warming data that temperatures have blown past the previous record three years in a row.

Note to the New York Times: “trouncing” and “blown past” are phrases appropriate to sports reporting, not science reporting. Except that no sports reporter would dare write an article in which he never bothers to give you the score of the big game.

Yet that’s what passes for “science reporting” on the issue of global warming, where asking for numbers and margins of errors apparently makes you an enemy of science. Instead, it’s all qualitative and comparative descriptions. It’s science without numbers.

It wasn’t just the New York Times. Try finding the relevant numbers ready at hand in the NASA/NOAA press release. You get numbers comparing 2016’s temperature with “the mid-20th century mean” or “the late 19th century.” But there’s nothing comparing it to last year or the year before except qualitative descriptions. So the government’s science bureaucracy is setting the trend, making reporters dig for the relevant numbers rather than presenting them up front.

It’s almost like they’re hiding something. And that is indeed what we find. I finally tracked down an exception to this reporting trend: the UK newspaper The Independentgives us the relevant numbers.

They should have been in the first paragraph, but at least they’re in the third paragraph: “This puts 2016 only nominally ahead of 2015 by just 0.01C—within the 0.1C margin of error—but….” There’s stuff after the “but,” but it’s just somebody’s evaluation. Even this report can’t give us a straight fact and leave it alone.

For the benefit of science reporters and other people who are unfamiliar with the scientific method, let me point out that the margin of error for these measurements is plus or minus one tenth of a degree Celsius. The temperature difference that is supposedly being measured is one one-hundredth of a degree—one tenth the size of the margin of error. To go back to sports reporting, that’s like saying that the football is on the 10-yard line—give or take a hundred yards.

I think you can see why they didn’t lead with these numbers in the first paragraph or the headline, because if they did everyone would stop reading and move on to the next article. “This Year’s Temperatures Statistically Identical to Last Year’s” is not a headline that grabs anybody’s attention.

That’s not the worst part. The worst part is that this isn’t the first year they’ve done this. Two years ago, government agencies and gullible reporters repeated the exact same claims about the hottest year on record, along with some other howlers. What was the margin for that year’s record? Two one-hundredths of a degree, also much smaller than the margin of error.

Lest I be accused of not giving you numbers, global temperatures for 2015 were reported to be higher than 2014 by as much as 2.9 degrees Celsius, though you have to read to the 18th paragraph before the New York Times deigns to tell you this. That’s not as impressive as it may seem, because both 2015 and 2016 were El Nino years, when there is a normal, natural increase in temperatures.

This highlights a bigger problem with the global warming theory. For all the excitement over records set over the past 137 years—precise global thermometer measurements date only to 1880—current temperatures still are not clearly out of the range of normal variation in the 10,000 years or so since the planet bounced back from the last ice age, despite all of the furious attempts to hype them up.

Yet here is Arizona State University “theoretical physicist”—and, of course, media personality—Lawrence M. Krauss taking to Twitter to ask: “When will the evidence of the need to act be enough?” This is above a link to, you guessed it, the number-free New York Times report.

Yes, I really do wonder how anyone could possibly be skeptical of claims about the climate made by science “advocates” and by the media. It’s a total mystery.

bias, climate change, corruption, cover up, environment, global warming, ideology, indoctrination, news media, pandering, science

Filed under: bias, climate change, corruption, cover up, environment, global warming, ideology, indoctrination, news media, pandering, science

Hiding from a story is not the same as discrediting it

original article: Andrea Mitchell Dismisses Clinton Rape Accusation as ‘Discredited’
May 19, 2016 by Kyle Drennen

On Thursday’s NBC Today, correspondent Andrea Mitchell was so deep in the tank for Hillary Clinton that the veteran reporter claimed a major scoop from her own network about Bill Clinton being accused of rape was a “discredited” story.

Mitchell was aghast that Donald Trump mentioned rape allegations against the former president during aWednesday night interview: “…last night, Trump fired a shot squarely at Clinton’s husband….using that word unprompted during an interview last night with Fox News’s Sean Hannity, bringing up a discredited and long-denied accusation against former President Bill Clinton…”

A soundbite played of Trump saying the word “rape,” but Mitchell couldn’t bring herself to utter the term. Co-hosts Matt Lauer and Savannah Guthrie were similarly cryptic when teasing the segment. Earlier in the 7:30 a.m. ET hour, Lauer declared: “Up next, a word used by Donald Trump while talking about former President Bill Clinton that has him under fire this morning.” Minutes later, Guthrie noted: “Hillary Clinton’s camp going hard after Donald Trump…for a word that Trump used in an interview…”

NBC displayed the same squeamishness back on February 25, 1999, the day after then-investigative correspondentLisa Myers interviewed Juanita Broaddrick, who accused Clinton of raping her in 1978, during his first campaign for governor of Arkansas. At the time, Myers had to address concerns that the network initially forced her to sit on the story before “finally” allowing it on air.

Despite such a bombshell report coming on the heels of the Monica Lewinsky scandal, Broaddrick’s claims received short shrift on the network news. A 2015 Media Research Center study detailed how the story was ignored by the Big Three, including NBC:

Well, consider that when then-President Bill Clinton was accused of rape, those same newscasts aired just four stories mentioning those charges during a 12-month period from March 1998 through March 1999.

The four: On March 28, 1998, the NBC Nightly News ran a full story on how Clinton, then the Attorney General of Arkansas, allegedly raped Juanita Broaddrick in a hotel room in 1978. Nightly News provided no further coverage; when NBC’s Lisa Myers taped an exclusive on-camera interview with Broaddrick for Dateline, anchor Tom Brokaw would only mention it in a brief promo at the end of his February 24, 1999 newscast.

The CBS Evening News ran a single report on Broaddrick’s charges during their Saturday, February 20, 1999 newscast. ABC mentioned the case in passing during a March 7, 1999 World News Sunday report about an interview given by whistleblower Linda Tripp; twelve days later, World News Tonight viewers saw a brief clip of then-White House correspondent Sam Donaldson questioning Clinton about the case at a March 19, 1999 news conference: “Can you tell us what your relationship with Ms. Broaddrick was?”

According to Nexis, there’s been no additional discussion of Broaddrick’s charge since then on the evening newscasts — not during Bill Clinton’s book tour, Hillary Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign, or even as a point of reference in discussions of other scandals.

Even when Broaddrick herself took to social media early in 2016 to lament the Clintons once again being on the national stage during the presidential campaign, journalists like Mitchell made sure to censor the news. During a Wednesday interview with World Net Daily, Broaddrick recounted a brief phone call she had with Mitchell:

Juanita created a social media firestorm earlier this year by tweeting that she had been “dreading seeing my abuser on TV campaign trail for enabler wife … but his physical appearance reflects ghosts of past are catching up.” One of the many media figures who called her after this tweet was Andrea Mitchell of NBC. Because she’d had a positive experience with Lisa Myers with NBC back in 1999, Andrea Mitchell was one of the few calls Juanita returned in the aftermath of her trending tweets. Andrea Mitchell asked her just one question, listened to her answer, and told Juanita condescendingly, “We’re not going to air anything with you because you have nothing new to add.” Juanita felt bewildered by Andrea Mitchell’s dismissive attitude.

On Thursday, after Trump resurrected the story, Mitchell immediately parroted Clinton campaign spin waving reporters off the scandal:

Late last night, the Clinton campaign responded in a statement that read, “Trump is doing what he does best, attacking when he feels wounded and dragging the American people through the mud for his own gain. If that’s the kind of campaign he wants to run, that’s his choice.” Also accusing him of trying to change the subject from his refusal to release his taxes.

Wrapping up the report, Mitchell proclaimed: “NBC News has reached out to the Trump campaign this morning to ask why he brought up that long-denied Bill Clinton allegation. So far, no response.”

ABC’s Good Morning America and CBS This Morning fretted over Trump “rehashing” the “old” accussstions.

Watch women of “The View” defending sexual abuse of women

More reporters ignoring Hillary’s defense of her husband’s abuse of women, but piling on Trump

bias, censorship, corruption, Democrats, elitism, hypocrisy, ideology, indoctrination, left wing, liberalism, news media, pandering, politics, progressive, propaganda, relativism, scandal, sex

Filed under: bias, censorship, corruption, Democrats, elitism, hypocrisy, ideology, indoctrination, left wing, liberalism, news media, pandering, politics, progressive, propaganda, relativism, scandal, sex

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