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Archive for April, 2005

April 30th 2005

LAT Busted On Sgrena Story

Patterico busted the LATimes today by comparing an original Reuters story with the edited Reuters story the LAT ran on the US military’s report on the Giuliana Sgrena incident. He found that the LAT, which always plays up the Italian Communist journalist’s claim that the car carrying her was traveling no more than 30 mph, edited this paragraph from the Reuters story:

CBS news has reported that a U.S. satellite had filmed the shooting and that it had been established the car carrying [Italian intelligence agent] Calipari [and Sgrena] was traveling at more than 60 mph per hour [sic] as it approached the U.S. checkpoint in Baghdad.

Patterico also points out that in reporting the U.S. soldier’s action, LAT replaced the word “killing” in the Reuters story with “slaying.” There is quite a difference between the two words. I could hit someone with my car and kill them, or I could deliberately shoot them and kill them. I could only slay them in the latter case; the word connotes deliberateness. (h/t Dafydd)

When will the diehard Lib MSM finally realize that their world has become much more transparent? Each ethical breach, each distorted report, each blatant bias will come to light, yet they prattle on, oblivious to the new reality, fiddling while their circulation plummets.

h/t Michelle Malkin

Update: They’ve done it again. From Patterico’s post this morning:

A Reuters story filed Saturday morning states on page two:

CBS news has reported that a U.S. satellite had filmed the shooting and that it had been established the car carrying Calipari was traveling at more than 60 miles per hour as it approached the U.S. checkpoint in Baghdad.

Today’s L.A. Times reprint of the article edits out that passage, which suggests that there is definitive proof that the car was speeding – a critical issue in the controversy.

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April 30th 2005

More Gay Republican Hysteria

A minor GOP lobbyist with no substantial power and no ties to the White House dies of a drug overdose. Is this news? No, of course not … unless he’s a gay Republican lobbyist. Then trust the LAT to be all over the recent death of R. Gregory Stevens.

Never heard of him? Neither have I.

Read the story and tell me if you see any other reason to run it but a envy over the ink the NYT got from breaking the story of GOP lobbyist Arthur Finkelstein’s gay wedding.

See also:
Leftist Outrage As Finkelstein Weds

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April 30th 2005

LAT Loves Communist Vietnam

Gushing with enthusiasm and turning a blind eye on human rights violations, an LATimes article on Vietnam 30 years after the war gushes with sentences like these:

Among [Vietnam's] strengths, [a Vietnamese-American there to make money] listed political stability, a 94% literacy rate, a young, industrious population and a reliable, efficient workforce. “If you’re the World Bank or [a nongovernmental organization], this is a place you can really see results.” …

It is a peaceful, stable presence in the Pacific Basin, with an army that has been whittled down to 484,000 troops. Its economy, a mix of Karl Marx and Adam Smith, has the highest growth rate in Southeast Asia. Private enterprise is flourishing, a middle class is growing, poverty rates are falling. The United States is a major trading partner, and Americans are welcomed with a warmth that belies the two countries’ history.

Human rights are almost completely ignored in this article about what is, at its base, a totalitarian Communist regime. Reporter-enthusiast David Lamb might have taken a moment to look up Vietnam on the Web site of George Soros’ Human Rights Watch. If he had, he would have reported a more truthful story:

The government continued to stifle free expression and restrict the exercise of other basic human rights. Authorities destroyed thousands of banned publications, restricted press coverage of a key corruption scandal, increased the monitoring of the Internet, denied the general public access to international television programs broadcast by satellite, and arrested or detained dissidents who used the Internet or other public fora to publicize their ideas. The year saw the death of Vietnam’s most well-known dissident, Tran Do, and the trial of Li Chi Quang, one of an emerging group of younger pro-democracy advocates in Vietnam.

Officials continued to suppress and control the activities of religious groups, including ethnic minority Christians in the northern and central highlands, members of the banned Unified Buddhist Church of Vietnam, and Hoa Hao Buddhists in the south. Authorities made a new round of arrests of indigenous minority church leaders and land rights activists in the Central Highlands, the site of widespread unrest in 2001.

Instead, Lamb quoted a Vietnamese Catholic who said he didn’t feel discriminated against and a young studnet who said, “I feel we have enough freedom. We know what we can do.”

Who you gonna trust — your local leftest newspaper or your international leftist human rights organization?

The story follows in the footsteps of Barbara Demmick’s LATimes lovefest for North Korea (see links below), and will probably tick off the local Vietnamese community — the largest in the US.

Update: VietPundit quickly linked me to this post on his blog that paints a very different picture.

See also:
Arrogantly, Ridiculously Defiant
Barbara Demmick: Unbalanced
North Korea Story: LAT Suicide Wish?
North Korea Spin Machine Hits LA

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April 29th 2005

What Dem Outspent Soros in 2004?

George Soros gave a lot of money to 527s trying to get the elitist, stumbling John Kerry elected — $12,650,000, according to the Center for the Study of Elections and Democracy at Brigham Young University. A pretty good donation, outspending ultralib Steven Bing nearly two-to-one.

But Soros plays second fiddle in this orchestra, falling nearly $2 million short of the $14,230,000 in 527 contributions made by Peter B. Lewis. Lewis gave the Dem’s Joint Victory Campaign $7.5 million, Act Now nearly $3 million, Move On.Org $2.5 million, and his “marijuana block” — he’s a big supporter of legalized marijuana — nearly $1 million. That block is made up of the Marijuana Policy Project Political Fund, Young Democrats of America and Punk Voter.

Who is Peter Lewis? The Chairman and CEO of the they-don’t-call-it-Progressive-for-nothing auto insurance company. If your insurance is with Progressive, you should cancel it immediately.

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April 29th 2005

New UN Sex Crimes: Liberia

Evidence that UN peacekeepers are raping and sexually exploiting minors is continuing, despite UN efforts to curb the sexual perversion of its peacekeepers. Who is surprised?

Here’s the statement from today’s UN press briefing:

This past week, the Department of Peacekeeping Operations received information concerning a number of allegations of sexual exploitation and abuse by UN personnel serving with the UN mission in Liberia. The allegations range from the exchange of goods, money or services for sex to the sexual exploitation of a minor.

Preliminary investigations under way by the Mission have indicated that some of the allegations have been substantiated, while others have not. The Peacekeeping Department here in New York, as well as the Mission on the ground, are taking appropriate follow-up action. The Peacekeeping Department has been in touch with the relevant troop-contributing countries to inform them of the allegations and to seek their full cooperation.

The United Nations treats this issue with the utmost seriousness. And, as we continue to clamp down on misconduct throughout all peacekeeping missions, it is likely that the number of allegations will increase. While the information we have received is still preliminary, as in some cases, the Peacekeeping Department can be contacted directly for further information.

Under mild questioning, the spokesperson refused to release any additional information. His statement that allegations will increase certainly deserved probing by the reporters present, but they were in an oil-for-food frenzy and didn’t ask.

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April 29th 2005

Nitpicking To Death

Unable to face the reality that John Bolton is the only logical candidate to force much-needed reform at the UN, the Left continues their efforts to nitpick the nomination. A raised voice here, a not being nice to an incompetent underling there, and now this (from AP):

John R. Bolton, the embattled nominee to be U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, regularly tried to set up meetings abroad with Russian, British and French officials without notifying the U.S. Embassy or the State Department, the outgoing head of the department’s European bureau said Friday.

On each occasion, Bolton ultimately received permission before the meetings actually were conducted because department officials found out about his plans, A. Elizabeth Jones, assistant secretary of state for Europe and Eurasia, said in an interview with The Associated Press.

Let’s see. He travelled to do his job. He received permission. Holy cow!

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April 28th 2005

The Left Fails To Get It Right

Some pearls from comments posted on Talk Left regarding the President’s press conference:

He actually said the reason for all the increased teror [sic] attacks is because of our effective offense. Can someone explain this to me?

Not much good at strategic thinking, eh? There followed a lengthy discourse on whether and how Bush was “using” his accent for political gain that was fairly intelligent, but it ended with this:

When you’ve arbitrarily killed that many people openly, and gotten away with it in a big way, and actually turned it to political advantage, you can talk in any damned accent, with any imprecision of diction, that you like.

Elitism is still alive on the Left:

People actually like mumbling, glassy-eyed inbred retards? Must be a southern thang…

And intelligent thought still eludes many of them:

I wouldn’t trust the stock market to handle the money. Yes, I think the President should advocate us raising the payroll taxes to pay for it. The President quoted a figure of 18%. My answer to that is: Mr. President, raise our payroll taxes. We are in debt because of your tax policies and now we have to pay the piper.

Wouldn’t trust the stock market? Gee, I guess all those union pension funds and all those IRAs, SEPs and mutual fund accounts are in the hands of untrusty people.

Solution for problems: Raise taxes.

Missing the issue: Raising payroll taxes will have no effect on reducing income taxes … and reducing income taxes spurred the economy. Excessive federal spending (mostly on Dem entitlement programs) and the war on terrorism caused the deficit.

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April 28th 2005

Unlimited Oil Reserves, Part Two

Dr. Thomas Gold, who died in 2004, was the author of The Deep Hot Biosphere: The Myth of Fossil Fuels, and the leading proponent of the theory that oil is not a “fossil fuel,” but a material that is continuously being produced deep within the earth. Gold was an astronomy professor at Cornell and a member of the National Academy of Sciences, so he’s not some uneducated rube spouting a far-fetched theory.

Imagine for a moment what would happen to international policy if suddenly we found the Saudis were sitting on a small portion of a vast, replenishable resource? Imagine what would happen to the economy. Interesting little thought-bunny-trails, huh?

Here are some excerpts from an interview with Gold from Radio Free America, hosted by Tom Valentine, whose questions are in bold:

What first prompted you to suggest that oil and natural gas is generated from a chemical substance in the crust of the Earth?

The astronomers have been able to find that hydrocarbons, as oil, gas and coal are called, occur on many other planetary bodies. They are a common substance in the universe. You find it in the kind of gas clouds that made systems like our solar system. You find large quantities of hydrocarbons in them. Is it reasonable to think that our little Earth, one of the planets, contains oil and gas for reasons that are all its own and that these other bodies have it because it was built into them when they were born?

That question makes a lot of sense. After all, they didn’t have dinosaurs and ferns on Jupiter to produce oil and gas?

That’s right. Yet, for some reason my theory was not heard. The old theory that it was all made from fossils had become so firmly established that when the astronomers had perfectly definitive evidence on most of the other planets, it was just ignored, especially by the petroleum geologists who had, by then, called these things “fossil fuels.” So once they had a name, then every body believed it.

Gold’s test wells in Sweden yieled oil in an area that geologists would have avoided, but the amounts were not enough for commercial exploitation. Still, some took note:

Is the oil and gas industry reconsidering things in light of your work?

In many other countries they are listening to me: in Russia on a very large scale, and in China also. It is just Western Europe and the United States that are so stuck in the mud that they can’t look at anything else.

See also:
What If Oil Reserves Were Unlimited?

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April 28th 2005

Socialism In Action

Last night, one of my co-workers was at a community meeting for a builder who is working on getting approvals for a new residential community. A college professor stood up and said the following to the builder:

“You’re just here to make a buck. It’s not like you’re from the government, coming here to do something good for the community.”

The people who teach our kids ….

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April 28th 2005

Kofi Lied

It’s been a bad week for Kofi, forcing him to retreat from earlier statements that the Volcker report had exonerated him from blame in the oil-for-food scandal. The week is well summarized by the WashTimes:

Mr. Annan’s retreat became inevitable after Paul Volcker told Fox News on Tuesday that the Independent Inquiry Committee report “criticized [Mr. Annan] rather severely,” adding, “I would not call that an exoneration.” Asked point blank whether Mr. Annan had been cleared of wrongdoing in the scandal, the former Federal Reserve Board chairman said: “No.” Yesterday, Mr. Annan’s lawyer, Gregory Craig, claimed that the secretary-general was misquoted, and that he had never claimed to have been exonerated.

Misquoted? Did Annan and his attorney forget that transcripts of all UN media briefings are available online to anyone who wants them? Here’s the text of Annan’s statement to the UN press corp on the day of the release of Volcker’s last interim report, March 29:

“I have this morning received from Mr. Paul Volcker and his colleagues the second interim report of their independent inquiry into allegations concerning the United Nations oil-for-food programme in Iraq. I thank them once again for their investigation.

“As I had always hoped and firmly believed, the Inquiry has cleared me of any wrongdoing. On the key issue of the award of the contract to inspect humanitarian goods entering Iraq under the oil-for-food programme, the report states clearly that ‘there is no evidence that the section of Cotecna in 1998 was subject to any affirmative or improper influence of the Secretary-General in the bidding or selection process’.”

Misquoted? It seems to me the statement says, “the Inquiry has cleared me of any wrongdoing.” Oh, and that’s a period at the end of that sentence, as in, “the Inquiry has cleared me of any wrongdoing period.”

Annan did not stay to answer questions at the March 29 briefing, so the statement stands alone, in flat rebuttal of Annan’s attorney’s claim that the Sec. Gen. never claimed exoneration.

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With Obama winning the presidency by seven percent, we can't blame the media. Their laudatory coverage and refusal to extensively probe into Obama's background and [lack of] experience was at best responsible for five percent of his vote, the pundits tell us. Here is a compilation of over 100 significant instances of pro-Obama/anti-McCain bias during the 2008 campaign.

For all 'Media Bias 2008' – Click Here

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