cbs news

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Charlie Rose's very weak immigration interview with Jose Antonio Vargas - 09/29/13

In June 2012, Charlie Rose interviewed illegal alien journalist Jose Vargas on CBS News' This Morning. They discussed the Time Magazine cover story Vargas authored called "We Are Americans/Just Not Legally".

Can Caroline Horn get anything right? (CBS News, immigration) - 06/21/13

Caroline Horn of CBS News offers "Are pro-immigration reform Republicans hurting their 2016 chances?" ( peekURL.com/z3LwV8J ). It's not clear whether she's intentionally trying to deceive her readers or whether she's just a sloppy reporter, but let's take a look.

She writes:

How CBS immigration poll misleads (legalization, amnesty, Cirilli, Mataconis, Moran) - 01/29/13

If I said we should require all illegal aliens to leave, what would you say? I'd imagine most people would laugh and say, "how? Illegal aliens shouldn't be here in the first place. It's not like we could wave a magic wand and 'require' them to leave."

And, that explains why a new immigration poll from CBS News misleads (link).

CBS Republican Presidential Debate November 12, 2011 (South Carolina, GOP, Romney, Cain, Perry, Ron Paul, Bachmann, Gingrich, Santorum, Graham, DeMint) - 11/12/11

We just had yet another worthless GOP debate three days ago, but tonight there's yet another one. This time CBS News will be the one asking the weak questions at a debate at Wofford College in Spartanburg, South Carolina. It's set to kick off at 8pm Eastern.

CBS poll: support for Arizona immigration law at 74% - 07/14/10

According to a new CBS News poll (link), support for the new Arizona immigration law is at a very high 74%:

* 57% say the law is "about right"
* 17% say the law "doesn't go far enough"

Contrast that with 23% who say it "goes too far".

DOJ may challenge Arizona immigration law: what to do - 06/18/10

Earlier this month in an interview with TV reporter in Ecuador, Hillary Clinton stated that the Department of Justice will be challenging the new Arizona immigration law in court. I was a bit skeptical since she's not the DOJ and she might have been basing it on an assumption rather than knowledge.

However, CBS News now offers this (link):

Now a senior administration official tells CBS News that the federal government will indeed formally challenge the law when Justice Department lawyers are finished building the case. The official said Justice is still working on building the case.

Contacted about Clinton's comments today, State Department spokesman PJ Crowley said they reflected her beliefs.

"The Secretary was asked about the Arizona law during a TV interview in Ecuador," he said. "She believes that a better approach is comprehensive immigration reform, and said so. Regarding how far along the legal review is, that is a matter for the Department of Justice."

Despite the senior administration official's comments, an official at the Justice Department told CBS News today that the question of whether to sue is still under consideration.

This would be a political mistake. The Arizona law has wide support, and suing would reduce Obama's popularity even more than it is now, not to mention what it would do to the popularity of Democrats in Congress.

On the other hand, the Obama administration has to know that a good part of their opposition is incompetent. In the worst case scenario, the loudest opposition to the suit would consist of those in the tea parties movement, and the DOJ would continue with the suit just as the Democrats were able to get healthcare reform.

The first thing to do is to recognize that most of the loudest voices on the conservative side of things are great at making a lot of noise, but aren't so great at actually coming up with and following through on plans. Undercut them or prop them up as necessary.

If you want to prevent a suit in the first place, apply the same techniques as are outlined on the page about how to reduce illegal immigration.

UPDATE: A quick example of that incompetence is offered by Jim Geraghty of National Review (link):

there’s little additional harm for the administration in making moves that enrage conservatives, because the conservatives are already enraged, and no matter how enraged they get, they can only vote once. (You’re thinking, “shame there’s no ACORN on our side,” huh?) The independents are probably a lost cause. The only way to mitigate a rough year is to energize the base, and so for all extents and purposes, policy decisions for the next four months will be driven by the need to motivate disappointed liberal voters.

His political hackery fails to take into account the fact that not all liberals - and certainly not all Democrats - support massive illegal immigration. And, he fails to promote efforts that would cause those on the fence to realize the massive downsides of the current situation. The only people who should support massive illegal immigration are ideologues and those who directly profit; Geraghty isn't trying to split that small group off from the rest.

Kelly Cobiella agitates for illegal immigration (illegal aliens "flee" Arizona over new law) - 05/03/10

Kelly Cobiella of CBS News offers "Immigrant Families Leave Arizona, Fearing Law/At Least 100,000 Illegal Immigrants Flee the State Fearing Legislation; Some Citizens Angered by Financial Impact" (cbsnews.com/stories/2010/05/03/eveningnews/main6457212.shtml).

Immoral: Scott Pelley lies about Arizona law to support illegal immigration (John Hunter) - 05/02/10

Tonight's 60 Minutes featured a segment called "The All-American Canal", an attempt by Scott Pelley of CBS News to pull heartstrings in order to support illegal immigration (cbsnews.com/video/watch/?id=6453537n).

Stephanie Condon of CBS confused about basics of knowledge - 04/15/10

Stephanie Condon of CBS News offers 'Poll: "Birther" Myth Persists Among Tea Partiers, All Americans' (link), in which she shows that she has trouble with basic epistemological issues. She writes:

The so-called "birther movement," questioning Mr. Obama's origins, began during his presidential campaign. It has steadily persisted through Mr. Obama's presidency, in spite of overwhelming evidence he was born in the United States -- including his 1961 birth announcement, printed in two Hawaii newspapers... The myth persists among the larger American population, but to a lesser degree, according to the poll, conducted April 5 - 12. Thirty-two percent of Republicans think the president was born in another country.

The use of "myth" implies that their beliefs are false. However, the most Condon can offer is "overwhelming evidence". That implies that there's the possibility that those beliefs (or at least some of them) aren't false, and in that case they wouldn't be "myths". In order for them to be "myths", it would need to have been definitively proven that Obama was born in Hawaii, when in fact it has not been definitively proven.

Now, that doesn't mean he wasn't born there. However, we don't have conclusive proof that he was born there; it's still an open question even if it's very highly likely.

Further, one of those bits of "overwhelming evidence" is the announcements she mentions, neither of which listed in which hospital or even city he was born and which no one has been able to prove would only indicate a Hawaii birth. When you look at the actual evidence, it's not as "overwhelming" as hacks like Stephanie Condon would have you believe.

Obama state dinner guests incl. Couric, Brian Williams, GE chairman, DreamWorks, NYT and WaPo reporters... - 11/24/09

A full list of those invited to tonight's White House state dinner - the one featuring arugula (no, really) - is here. In addition to a large number of Indian names that I don't recognize, here are some that seem more than a bit interesting:

Lindsey Graham slams Glenn Beck; "Birthers" are "crazy" (The Atlantic's First Draft of History) - 10/01/09

The Atlantic is conducting a corporate-sponsored series of interviews they call the "First Draft of History". Me, I call them EstablishmentHackapaooza. Earlier today, one segment featured Sen. Lindsay Graham being interviewed by Jeffrey Goldberg of the Atlantic (firstdraftofhistory.theatlantic.com/analysis/graham_the_loyal_opposition.php). As could be expected, Graham wasn't exactly challenged on the various things he said.

Obama says healthcare plan won't cover illegal aliens (word games; possible exception for children) - 07/22/09

Katie Couric of CBS News asked Barack Obama whether his healthcare plan would include illegal aliens to which he replied "no" (link). He did allow for an exception:

"First of all, I'd like to create a situation where we're dealing with illegal immigration, so that we don't have illegal immigrants... And we've got legal residents or citizens who are eligible for the plan. And I want a comprehensive immigration plan that creates a pathway to achieve that... The one exception that I think has to be discussed is how are we treating children... Partly because if you've got children who may be here illegally but are still in playgrounds or at schools, and potentially are passing on illnesses and communicable diseases, that aren't getting vaccinated, that I think is a situation where you may have to make an exception."

Basically, Obama wants his plan to include all illegal aliens, he just wants to legalize the millions of current illegal aliens first. Presto chango, his plan won't cover illegal aliens, just those who were illegal aliens the day before. He's playing word games, and Couric is helping him. For more on that deception, see the post about David Cutler, noting that even after being amnestied, millions of former illegal aliens wouldn't be "Americans" until they'd spend years going through the citizenship process.

The follow-up question Courice should have asked is whether he intends to reduce the number of illegal aliens here currently through enforcement, something he clearly has no intention of doing. And, of course, the amnesty he supports would encourage even more illegal immigration, eventually swamping the system.

Seth Doane /CBS weeps for town built on illegal activity (Postville) - 06/14/09

Seth Doane of CBS News is just the latest "reporter" to go to Postville, Iowa and report on the immigration raid that occurred there over a year ago.

David Letterman smears 14-year-old girl; *CBS*, New York Times cover for him - 06/09/09

This site tries to avoid the Outrage du Jour, preferring instead to concentrate on topics that are actually important.

SPLC: DHS rightwing extremist report mentions them and "tracks" theirs "fairly closely" (Harry Smith; +two errors) - 04/16/09

As you haven't heard from almost anyone else, the recent Department of Homeland Security report warning about rightwing extremists mentions - without naming it - a misleading report from the Southern Poverty Law Center.

I say "almost" because of this:

Mark Potok, director of the [SPLC's] intelligence project, said... he was generally pleased with the report... "Basically, the report tracks fairly closely with what we have been saying for some time now. They mention us a couple of times, though not by name," he said.

Anyone who wants to do something effective about the report should stress that the DHS is relying on a misleading SPLC report; so far I have yet to see anyone else do that (not much of a surprise).

And, it's not just Potok who's happy with the report, but his boss Morris Dees. Speaking on yesterday's CBS News Early Show, Dees told a fawning Harry Smith that "I think they sync up pretty much", referring to an SPLC report claiming an increase in hate groups. Needless to say, Smith didn't point out that the SPLC has a fundraising interest in "hate", a word that they very broadly define. A transcript is at [1], and the SPLC crows about the similarities between the DHS report and their reports at [2].

The key to this is the DHS' reliance on the SPLC; the problem is getting others to concentrate on that.

(On a related note, one of the anecdotes in the DHS report appears to be completely bogus, and another appears to be highly questionable [3]).

[1] newsbusters.org/blogs/kyle-drennen/2009/04/15/
cbs-fears-right-wing-extremism-may-increase-after-obama-election
[2] splcenter.org/news/item.jsp?aid=373
[3] justoneminute.typepad.com/main/2009/04/the-race-to-dumb-special-dhs-edition.html

Maria Gavrilovic/CBS News: Barack Obama opposes the North American Union. Oh, really. - 10/19/08

Maria Gavrilovic of CBS News offers 'Obama Addresses N.C. Voter Who Called Him "Socialist"' (link) in which she allows Barack Obama to mislead and confuses what someone says with what they actually believe:
[At a campaign stop in Fayetteville, North Carolina, someone] asked the Democratic nominee about the North American Union, which he opposes.

"I know some people have been hearing rumors about it. But as far as I can tell that's just not something that's happening. We would never give up our sovereignty in that way. Any other questions?" Obama asked [her]...
The NAU is like immigration, in that candidates frequently use misleading language in an attempt to deceive. If Gavrilovic were a real reporter and not just a BHO transcriptionist, she would have asked him about his March statements in Lancaster PA where he more or less confirmed the NAFTA Superhighway, something that's tied to the NAU. He also faked being ignorant of the "Union" part of the NAU term, and he lied about the CFR. And, she'd point out that Barack Obama supports Bush's Security and Prosperity Partnership, something that some consider a precursor to the NAU. Not only that, but he spoke in code when coming out for the SPP.

The article also provides an example of how BHO has been able to get to where he is: because no one has asked him a good, "prosecutorial-style" question. Simply asking someone whether they support the NAU will always result in statements like those made by BHO above. Better questions need to be asked. Also, the person who asked him about the NAU also shouted "socialist, socialist, socialist – get out of here!" to him, something that only makes him look better to many as the MSM comes to his rescue. Note: per this, BHO's full remarks about the NAU were:
"Well, you know, I am opposed to it if it were happening. But it doesn't seem to be actually be happening. The truth of the matter is there is no plans. I've talked to a lot of people, including folks down in Texas. There's no plan to create a common government between Mexico, U.S. and Canada. That's just not... that's just not happening. I know some people have been hearing rumors about it. But as far as I can tell, that's just not something that's happening. We would never give up our sovereignty in that way. Any other questions?"
There may not be formal "plans", however, many powerful people have made proposals, including the CFR. See also Jim Hoagland/Washington Post: Obama should create North American Union.

Scott Shane/NYT's pro-BHO spin on Bill Ayers/Barack Obama collaboration - 10/04/08

Scott Shane of the New York Times offers "Obama and '60s Bomber: A Look Into Crossed Paths" (originally titled "Obama Had Met Ayers, but the Two Are Not Close"). If you believe the NYT, then everything's fine and dandy, and Barack Obama and 60s radical Bill Ayers are not close. The fact that they aren't close and never were close and nothing funny went on and there's nothing to see here is especially important because Ayers is a former and allegedly unrepentant terrorist who's since been, in Shane's words, "rehabilitated".

On the other hand, if you actually want the truth, compare the second paragraph on page 2 ("In fact, according to several people involved...") to the email here. Why, it's almost like Shane is reading from a script provided by Ken Rolling, the former executive director of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge.

And, for much more, see this response to the article: NYT's Ayers-Obama Whitewash. Regarding Scott Shane letting Ayers claim that he mostly only wanted to do property damage with his bombs, see this.

See also this from Steve Diamond:

an exchange of letters in late 1994, copies of which I obtained from Brown University, between Vartan Gregorian, then President of Brown and the individual responsible for assessing applications for grants from the national Annenberg Challenge, and Bill Ayers, the founder of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge, demonstrates that Ayers played a direct role in "composing" the Challenge's board of directors... I was interviewed at length by the New York Times for today’s story. In fact, this was the third Times reporter to interview me about the Ayers/Obama relationship - and I provided the Times with the letters I discuss here. They are not mentioned in the story at all.

See also "Ayers Was on Woods Fund Board with Obama When He Stepped on Flag" (LGF, peekURL.com/zab252h). That links to this August 2001 Chicago Magazine article entitled "No Regrets"; it includes a picture of Bill Ayers stepping on a U.S. flag. It also links to 'Obama served on a board with former Weather Underground member William Ayers and "that relationship with Mr. Ayers on this board continued after 9/11"', a fact check of a Hillary Clinton statement about Obama's association with Ayers (link). They agree that her statement was truthful.

And, see this:

It turns out as these ten key points confirm what I have argued all along - that Bill Ayers was responsible for the elevation of Obama to the Chicago Annenberg Challenge board and the New York Times reporting on this story actually supports my conclusion, though inadvertently.

BHO and Ayers also appeared at a far-left University of Chicago 11/20/1997 event about juvenile justice (link, copy here). The article also quotes Michelle Obama.

10/9/08: Obama lies again, with this being the latest explanation for his actions: "The gentleman in question, Bill Ayers, is a college professor, teaches education at the University of Illinois... That's how i met him -- working on a school reform project that was funded by an ambassador and very close friend of Ronald Reagan's" along with "a bunch of conservative businessmen and civic leaders... Ultimately, I ended up learning about the fact that he had engaged in this reprehensible act 40 years ago, but I was eight years old at the time and I assumed that he had been rehabilitated." (link) As indicated above, Obama continued working with him after 9/11/01, when even the most willingly blind person could see what Ayers was all about.

~ Who's helping the NYT spread their spin? ~

The people listed below all share one thing in common: they pretend that that NYT was actually trying to write an investigative report rather than a cover-up, and they all come to the conclusion that there's nothing there because the NYT says there's nothing there. Whether they actually believe that or whether they're just trying to sell the NYT's lies isn't clear.

* Steve Benen of Washington Monthly says the NYT "couldn't find any dirt", trying to make his readers think the NYT was looking for dirt rather than covering for BHO (washingtonmonthly. com/archives/individual/2008_10/015024.php). A comment I left was later deleted.

* Ben Smith from The Politico tries a similar technique: "though the Times has pinned down a couple of new details on the relationship, there's no real news, and the main new detail is exculpatory: A different Chicago figure picked Obama to chair an education fund. The conservative blog reaction to the story is outrage, as it has failed to turn up the secret Rosetta Stone that many seem to believe will reveal some deeper truth about Obama's politics." (politico.com/blogs/bensmith/1008/Republicans_again_reading_the_Times.html?showall)

* Juliet Eilperin of the Washington Post (voices.washingtonpost.com/the-trail/2008/10/04/palin_turns_to_nyt_citing_arti.html). She starts out with snark and a lie: "It turns out GOP vice presidential nominee does like the mainstream media after all -- at least, when it's publishing unflattering stories about Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama." The NYT article isn't "unflattering", it's an attempt at a cover-up.

She then spins the story the same way the BHO campaign does: "In fact, both a Washington Post article in April and today's New York Times piece revealed Obama and Ayers to have had only a casual association: the former radical hosted a coffee for Obama's first bid for state Senate, they served together on an educational charity board and both live in Chicago's Hyde Park."

The WaPo article she mentions is "Former '60s Radical Is Now Considered Mainstream in Chicago" by Peter Slevin (link). That WaPo article is even more of a cover-up than the one from the NYT; in fact, almost everything in there tries to portray Ayers as an upstanding member of his community, and the only link to Obama is this cozy scene: The two men served for three years on the board of the Woods Fund, an anti-poverty group. The board, which Obama has since left, was small and collegial, said chair Laura Washington, who served with them. It met four times a year for a half-day, mostly to approve grants, she said. The atmosphere was "friendly but businesslike." Needless to say, a real reporter would try to determine what Washington isn't saying, but that leaves Peter Slevin out.

* Michael Shaw of the Huffington Post - who concentrates on a lightweight interpretation of images - basically reads from the card he's been handed: "all kinds of long hashed-over and discredited innuendos... resuscitating feeble allegations -- all then discounted..." (huffingtonpost.com/michael-shaw/reading-the-pictures-emny_b_131855.html)

* Martina Stewart of CNN references the NYT article and then says: "Several other publications, including the Washington Post, Time magazine, the Chicago Sun-Times, The New Yorker and The New Republic, have debunked the idea that Obama and Ayers had a close relationship." (says) However, an earlier version of the article - the change not noted - had "The National Review" in place of "The New Republic". (link) Presumably that was just a mistake and not (like their other coverage) an attempt to deceive.

* Sockpuppets, various. BHO supporters are clogging up MSM comments boards with Winner-style attacks. See, for instance, the 04:15 PM comment from "John" and the 04:26 PM comment from "Larry" at latimesblogs.latimes.com/washington/2008/10/sarah-palinbill.html and the 8:06 PM comment from Luke2 and the 7:34 PM comment from seemstome at voices.washingtonpost.com/the-trail/2008/10/04/palin_turns_to_nyt_citing_arti.html. If I didn't think they were just citizens voicing their opinions I'd think they were actually paid workers for the Obama campaign.

* Izvestia, aka CNN, offers a "Fact Check" that discusses Sarah Palin's comment that BHO is "palling around with terrorists" (link). Obviously, Palin should have put it in the correct legalistic format: "in the recent past, Barack Obama has worked with and associated with known and unrepentant terrorists". If she had, CNN wouldn't have been able to pretend that her non-legalistic formation was binding: 'Verdict: False. There is no indication that Ayers and Obama are now "palling around," or that they have had an ongoing relationship in the past three years. Also, there is nothing to suggest that Ayers is now involved in terrorist activity or that other Obama associates are.' No really: they actually try to pretend that her imprecise wording is more important than BHO's past collaboration with and association with a terrorist.

* Todd Beeton links to both CNN and the NYT and continues the trends discussed above: mydd.com/story/2008/10/5/164214/299

* Obsequious toady, repeat liar, and supporter of illegal activity Joe Klein offers "Embarracuda", an obvious attempt to deceive (time-blog.com/swampland/2008/10/embarracuda.html). Needless to say, he downplays the Obama-Ayers connection and even works in a BHO talking point about how BHO was just a child when the Weather Underground were terrorizing the U.S.: Over the weekend, [Sarah Palin] picked up on an article in The New York Times, which essentially says that Barack Obama and the former terrorist Bill Ayers have crossed paths in Chicago, served on a couple of charitable boards together, but aren't particularly close. To Palin--or her scriptwriters--this means that Obama has been "palling around" with terrorists. Now, I wish Ayers had done some serious jail time; he certainly needed to pay some penance for his youthful criminality--even if most people in Chicago, including the mayor, have decided that he has something of value to say about education. But I can also understand how Obama, who was a child when Ayers was cutting his idiot swath, would not quite understand the enormity of the professor's background...

* Scott Conroy of CBS News offers "Lagging In The Polls, Palin Shifts To Fear Tactics" (cbsnews.com/blogs/2008/10/06/politics/fromtheroad/entry4503812.shtml), which follows 10/4's equally biased "Palin Says She Wants To Talk About Issues, Adds That Obama Pals With A Terrorist" (cbsnews.com/blogs/2008/10/06/politics/fromtheroad/entry4503812.shtml). In the first article he says: '[Palin] said [Obama and Ayers] had a relationship akin to being "pals," even though the Associated Press and many other news outlets have concluded that Obama and Ayers' relationship added up to far less than a close friendship.' Needless to say, that's extremely disingenuous.

* Dana Milbank of the Washington Post.

10/6/08 UPDATE: The latest lie from the BHO campaign is that BHO had little knowledge of the radical past of Ayers and the Weatherman group. This was presented by David Axelrod and Robert Gibbs (thepage.time.com/mccain-campaign-release-on-obama-and-ayers); see Joe Klein retailing their lie above.

John McCain ad was right and Barack Obama, MSM misled about BHO's kindergartener sex education bill - 09/16/08

Earlier this month the John McCain campaign released an ad (link, video link) saying in part:
"Obama's one accomplishment?

Legislation to teach "comprehensive sex education" to kindergartners.

Learning about sex before learning to read?

Barack Obama.
This has led to a wide variety of BHO supporters - specifically those in the MSM - calling McCain a liar. To a certain extent, they have somewhat of a point: the bill might not be an "accomplishment" for BHO since he was just a supporter and not a co-sponsor and since it never passed. And, the McCain campaign might not have correctly contextualized some of the other quotes they provide in the ad relating to BHO's educational plans.

However, their complaints don't usually involve those points but instead revolve around the middle sentences quoted above; they try to pretend that kindergarteners were just covered by the bill in order to prevent abuse when in fact the bill was much more far-reaching than BHO and his helpers would have you believe. For an example of what Obama would have you believe, see this or this quote from campaign spokeswoman Jen Psaki (link):
"Barack Obama supports sensible, community-driven education for children because, among other things, he believes it could help protect them from pedophiles. A child's knowledge of the difference between appropriate and inappropriate touching is crucial to keeping them safe from predators."
Now, for the truth about the bill, read this:
Within moments of the ad's appearance, the Obama campaign called it "shameful and downright perverse." The legislation in question, a bill [Senate Bill 99] in the Illinois State Senate that was supported but not sponsored by Obama, was, according to Obama campaign spokesman Bill Burton, "written to protect young children from sexual predators" and had nothing to do with comprehensive sex education for kindergartners...

Newspaper, magazine, and television commentators quickly piled on. "The kindergarten ad flat-out lies," wrote the New York Times, arguing that "at most, kindergarteners were to be taught the dangers of sexual predators." The Washington Post wrote that "McCain's 'Education' Spot is Dishonest, Deceptive." And in a column in The Hill, the influential blogger Josh Marshall called the sex-education spot "a rancid, race-baiting ad based on [a] lie. Willie Horton looks mild by comparison."
Read the rest, which includes a discussion of how what was originally meant for those in the sixth grade and up was changed to everyone in K-12 because urban areas might require different topics to be covered than more rural areas. The article also includes Byron York trying to get in touch with three of the four original sponsors and for some unknown reason or other not getting his calls returned. Only one of the four spoke with him about the bill:
After we discussed other aspects of the bill, I told [original co-sponsor state senator Iris Martinez] that reading the bill, I just didn't see it as being exclusively, or even mostly, about inappropriate touching. "I didn't see it that way, either," Martinez said. "It's just more information about a whole variety of things that have to go into a sex education class, the things that are outdated that you want to amend with things that are much more current."

So, I asked, you didn't see it specifically as being about inappropriate touching?

"Absolutely not."
That doesn't mean that the parts involving kindergarteners wouldn't be restricted to just inappropriate touching. However, the age range was lowered specifically to allow different school districts to offer teaching appropriate to their areas, and thus those in lower grades could be taught much more than BHO is letting on. For a discussion of that, see this or this.

A list of just some of those who've helped Barack Obama hide the truth about the bill is in the extended entry:



* Adam Nagourney and Jeff Zeleny of the New York Times say the ad "misleadingly accused Obama of endorsing sex education for kindergarten students" (link)

* A New York Times editorial falsely states "At most, kindergarteners were to be taught the dangers of sexual predators." (link) What they could have been taught was left up to the localities.

* Following the party line boilerplate, Paul Krugman says 'In reality, he supported legislation calling for "age and developmentally appropriate education"; in the case of young children, that would have meant guidance to help them avoid sexual predators.'

* Larry Rohter of the New York Times pretends the ad was implying that "comprehensive" meant that kindergarteners would receive the information as high school students; he's probably the only person coming to that conclusion. He also takes Obama's word for his understanding of the bill rather than discussing what the bill actually says and what others intended by it (link).

* Emi Kolawole of FactCheck correctly points out some of the minor errors in the ad, but says 'It's true that the phrase "comprehensive sex education" appeared in the bill, but little else in McCain's claim is accurate.' (link)

* Michael Scherer of Time says "[t]he sex-education bill in question had called only for age-appropriate instruction..."

* Brave New Films promotes a Planned Parenthood ad (alternet.org/blogs/video/98697/ planned_parenthood_rips_into_mccain_for_sex-ed_smear_campaign): 'In an ad, they say that Obama was helping children protect themselves from sex offenders, while McCain seemingly doesn't care.'

* Nedra Pickler and Charles Babbington of the Associated Press claim that the ad "misrepresent[ed] [BHO's] position on sex education for kindergartners." (link). That's not completely inaccurate, but it fails to note that BHO either hasn't read, hasn't understood, or is misrepresenting the bill.

* Joe Garofali of the San Francisco Chronicle falsely states 'Obama doesn't support explicit sex education for kindergarteners. The bill -- which never was passed out of the Illinois legislature --included teaching "age-appropriate sex education" -- you know, what is inappropriate touching, that sort of stuff'. (link)

* Richard Cohen offered "The Ugly New McCain" (link) and called the ad a "lie". That referenced a McCain appearance on The View (!) where Joy Behar called it a lie as well.

* "Hilzoy" of the Washington Monthly pretends it was just about inappropriate touching (link).

* Joe Sudbay tries to pretend it was just about preventing abuse (americablog.com/2008/09/mccain-got-nasty-defending-his-negative.html)

* Democratic consultant Mark Mellman says "There is not an iota of reality in McCain's attack on Obama's supporting comprehensive sex education for kindergartners. As we all know, he voted to help children avoid sexual predators."

* A Tampa Bay Tribune editorial says 'The facts: Obama, while a state lawmaker in Illinois, supported a measure to provide older students with age and developmentally appropriate sex education. Younger children, such as those kindergarten-age, would be taught "age-appropriate" things such as how to protect themselves from sexual predators.'

* A Minneapolis Star-Tribune editorial says "There is no evidence that Obama supported explicit sex education in kindergarten, as a McCain ad implied."

* Not even understanding BHO talking points, Cox Newspapers columnist Tom Teepen says 'No, as an Illinois state legislator Obama did not push for "comprehensive sex education" for kindergarteners. He supported a proposal for age appropriate sex education -- which, for kindergarteners, would have meant only making them aware of the possibility of sex abuse and teaching them means to counter it.'

UPDATE:
* Darrell West from the Brookings Institution falsely states "The McCain campaign ran another spot erroneously claiming Obama favored comprehensive sex education for kindergarteners." (link)

* It's an Anderson Cooper from CNN and "FactCheck" two-fer. CNN aired a "Fact Checking" episode that hewed to the party line (link):
[RANDI KAYE, CNN CORRESPONDENT]: Did Obama want to teach sex education to kindergartners? Not really. The programming question was intended to teach kids how to avoid sexual predators, says the nonpartisan group FactCheck.org.

VIVECA NOVAK, FACTCHECK.ORG: What he wanted to do was increase the range of some -- some sort of sex education, K-12. But the kind of thing he was interested in having kids at a young age learn about was inappropriate sexual advances that might be made against them.
What BHO says he wants and what was in the bill he voted for are, of course, two entirely different things.

Katie Couric to finally bring tough questions to the presidential race - 12/04/07

Perky Katie Couric [1] has decided to do something about the MSM's complete inability to call the presidential candidates on their endless lies and misleading statements, and will be asking them a series of tough questions in the coming days ("10 Tough Questions For 10 Top Candidates", link). And, I applaud her for her efforts [2].

What Steve Kroft/60 Minutes forgot to ask (Hazleton immigration ordinance) - 11/19/06

Steve Kroft of 60 Minutes offered a slightly fair report on Hazleton, Pennsylvania's new ordinance concerning illegal aliens renting and being employed in the city.

Here's a partial list of some of the things he forgot to do:

"Boosting For Billions" - 07/13/04

[This post is originally from 7/10/04; see the next post for an explanation]

After its Kerry-Edwards-Stahl kissyfest, 60 Minutes ran a segment called "Boosting For Billions":

"Boosting" is organized shoplifting, and if you think it's a petty crime, think again.

As Correspondent Steve Kroft first reported in February, approximately $10 billion in merchandise is stolen from stores every year -- and retailers are just beginning to realize that a huge chunk of it is being taken by gangs of highly skilled, well-organized professionals from South America...

There may be as many as a 1,000 of these teams operating every day, and about the only the place they are ever captured is on the videotape in store security cameras...

[A cop] has books containing mug shots, and surveillance photos of 2,500 South American gang members known to be operating in the United States. All of them have been arrested at least once; almost all of them are in the country illegally...

...retailers are trying to push a bill through Congress that would treat shoplifting by these rings as a federal felony with penalties of up to 10 years in jail.

Would it be mean-spirited of The Gap and the rest to suggest that - the horror! - the boosters should just be deported? No new laws necessary, just enforce those we already have.

Would Racial Identity groups hold protests in the streets? After, these gangs sound like they're doing the organized shoplifting Americans won't do.

On the other hand, perhaps these retailers who are losing millions of dollars a year might be willing to help get rid of lax immigration policies.