Howard Kurtz of the Washington Post offers "Anchor Lou Dobbs resigns from CNN" (link). Let me show some ways that he's still not a reliable source:
Lou Dobbs, the most opinionated and divisive anchor at a cable network that bills itself as a straight-news oasis, resigned from CNN on Wednesday night...
Some of the other CNN personalities - such as Rick Sanchez, Soledad OBrien, and Anderson Cooper - seem to be quite opinionated, and the first two do so publicly. If Kurtz can't see that, perhaps he's a bit like someone who lives next to the train tracks: after a while they get used to the noise. In his case, he thinks of the left-leaning Beltway establishment as "normal" and thinks that those who hold views held by others inside the Beltway aren't opinionated: they're just normal. Kurtz is incapable of understanding that. And, if Dobbs is "divisive" perhaps it's because, unlike CNN's milquetoast personalities, he's willing to rock the boat: "fight the power" as the kids used to say. Dobbs is willing to at least to a certain extent try to monkeywrench attempts by powerful forces - including the major political parties and business interests - to profit from illegal activity. Challenging those who want to profit from illegal activity is a foreign concept to Kurtz.
In recent years, the renamed "Lou Dobbs Tonight" has served as a forum for his strong and often controversial opinions, sometimes to the discomfort of the correspondents being interviewed. Dobbs drew fire earlier this year by urging President Obama to do more to prove that he was born in Hawaii, lending credence to unsubstantiated claims by the so-called "birthers."
My Obama citizenship page has over 100 entries, and in none of them do I make any unsubstantiated claims. While some who've discussed that issue have indeed made unsubstantiated claims, Dobbs has not. However, many Obama supporters have made a long series of unsubstantiated claims, frequently just making things up. That includes Howard Kurtz. As discussed at the link, he claimed that Hawaiian officials said Obama was born in Hawaii, when in fact that wasn't true at the time. Kurtz has not, as far as I know, discussed the unsubstantiated claim he made.
The Southern Poverty Law Center asked CNN in July to fire Dobbs over what it called his "racist conspiracy theories." And it put (CNN president Jon Klein) in an uncomfortable position, simultaneously insisting in a memo to his staff that the story about the president's birth certificate was "dead" and telling the Los Angeles Times that he trusted Dobbs to exercise his judgment on whether to keep pursuing it.
The SPLC isn't exactly a credible organization and they're quite far left; Dobbs would tell you that and tell you why, but in Kurtz' world they're "normal". And, Kurtz would never in a million years tell you that Jon Klein lied and got Dobbs to repeat it. Klein has not, as far as I know, issued a correction.
What Kurtz, Klein, CNN, and the rest are basically doing is creating their own reality in which their lies and misleading statements are truth and true statements by their opponents are false. It's a very mild version of 1984, but it's very dangerous. One of the best ways to fight it is to do things like this, pointing out how you can't trust self-styled journalists like Kurtz.
Thu, 11/12/2009 - 10:40 · Importance: 4