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May 19, 2008

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clarice

What this country needs is a good journalist malpractice law.

Danube of Thought

I love this part of the letter:

"Gillespie used the opportunity to also inquire whether NBC News still believes that Iraq is in the midst of a civil war. In November 2006, the network decided to label the infighting in the country a 'civil war.'

“'I noticed that around September of 2007, your network quietly stopped referring to conditions in Iraq as a "civil war,"' Gillespie wrote. “'Is it still NBC News’s carefully deliberated opinion that Iraq is in the midst of a civil war? If not, will the network publicly declare that the civil war has ended, or that it was wrong to declare it in the first place?.'”


I have no use for O'Reilly, but he's on the hunt against the whole NBC rat's nest, so I imagine he'll work out vigorously on this one. (Actually, since he declared war on NBC I guess I do have a little use for him.)

Daddy

I'm well aware that they're lying to us. What I'm uncertain of sometimes, is if they are lying to themselves as well. I ask that because I cannot fathom how decent media folks could consistantly be so self-evidently dishonest or disingenuous in mistating a political opponents position. Is it always deliberate, or are they self-programed to only hear the portions of sentances that resound with their biases and preconceptions? I hope they are delusional instead of deliberate because it's depressing to imagine that so many members of the media are so fundamentally dishonest. It certainly makes one pessimistic about the fate of a free Republic.

sbw

Clarice: What this country needs is a good journalist malpractice law

I'm not ready for such a law. But I am ready for gales of laughter followed by a serious decline in stock price, a la the New York Times.

capitano
I'm well aware that they're lying to us. What I'm uncertain of sometimes, is if they are lying to themselves as well. I ask that because I cannot fathom how decent media folks could consistantly be so self-evidently dishonest or disingenuous in mistating a political opponents position.

It's because there is no objective truth -- journalism is about making a difference in the world (and winning Pulitzers). Who, what, where, when, and how are as old-fashioned as manual typewriters.

Rick Ballard

"It certainly makes one pessimistic about the fate of a free Republic."

Witting or unwitting, they remain enemies of liberty. They would, of course, demand tolerance for their pernicious conduct, donning the cloak of invisibility which they name "good intentions". It should be a matter of indifference as to whether they are the fleas carrying the plague bacillus or the rat carrying the fleas. It doesn't matter in the end.

That's why moderation in defense does not rise to the level of virtue. They are undeserving of any benefit of doubt.

sbw

Rick Ballard; Witting or unwitting, they remain enemies of liberty.

I agree.

Bill in AZ

The impression I have is that the "ends justify the means". They are the elite, the educated, they "know". We don't. We are too ignorant to understand. The shading, the news by omission or by high focus, the blatant untruths, are intentional and deliberate, with no apologies, because it moves us where we need to go for our own good.

MikeS

The really disgusting thing is that Obama won't tell this administration what to say to the Iranians to get them to stop enriching. Obama is keeping exactly what to say a secret for his own political benefit. Meanwhile each day Iran gets closer and closer to making a nuclear weapon, until the day Barack speaks to Amadinijad directly.

hit and run

MikeS:
The really disgusting thing is that Obama won't tell this administration what to say to the Iranians to get them to stop enriching.

Well, is it so much "what" to say as it is "who" says it?

Look, we don’t do nuance well in politics and especially don’t do it well on Middle East policy. We look at things as black and white, and not gray. It’s conceivable that there are those in the Arab world who say to themselves, “This is a guy who spent some time in the Muslim world, has a middle name of Hussein, and appears more worldly and has called for talks with people, and so he’s not going to be engaging in the same sort of cowboy diplomacy as George Bush,” and that’s something they’re hopeful about. I think that’s a perfectly legitimate perception

OK, so with Iran, substitute Persian for Arab.

Or something. Whatever it is, Obama thinks that's a perfectly legitimate perception of himself.

bubarooni

i'm always full of questions and now have yet two more:

1.) haven't the euros asked us to pretty stay out of the whole thing and let them do all the negotiating?

2.) aren't we being good multi-lateralists by consulting with them and agreeing to let the euros do it all?

i keep hearing that we have to be good multi lateral types and work in consultation with our allies. are we to abandon this and just jump on the next flight to tehran and have a peace conference on our own?

this whole foreign policy thing is obviously very complicated.

MikeS

...it isn't so much "what" to say as it is "who" says it?

Well you have to admit he's done wonders unifying the Dem. Party,
and that "National Conversation about race", wasn't that a brilliant idea?

hit and run

Amen, MikeS.

Obama wants a conversation -- or a dialogue -- about anything -- about as much as Al Gore wants an honest debate on the science of global warming, or Congressional Dems want an honest discussion of the success of the surge.

All would rather you just shut up and let them have their monologue.

Becuase if they're the only ones speaking ... that's Unity!

Danube of Thought

"...how decent media folks could consistantly be so self-evidently dishonest or disingenuous in mistating a political opponents position."

It's a good question, but far more important is the underlying premise: what in the name of God is a news network doing with a "political opponent?" Have we already ceded the field to this idea (I think we have), that the networks are understood to favor one party or candidate over another, but in the meantime we'll hope and trust that they'll maintain their "objectivity?"

Danube of Thought

Anybody see anything in the MSM about the 31,000 scientists--that's right, 31,000--who have signed a petition objecting to the notion that dangerous manmade global warming is an established fact? I heard on Brit that 9,000 of them are PhD's.

Will this petition leak out into the public consciousness? Will we be seeing 31,000 separate personal attacks on the scientists' integrity, history of funding by Big Oil, and extramarital affairs?

Elliott

At first I thought it was laughable to see Obama complaining about snippets and lack of context when Republicans directed attention to statements made by the Reverend Dr. Jeremiah Wright and Michelle Obama.

But, then I realized I should heed his wisdom on this subject as he is the foremost expert* among our current crop of politicians.
________________________
*The master in action: (a). “John McCain wants to continue a war in Iraq perhaps as long as 100 years;” (b). "John McCain went on television and said that there has been quote 'great progress economically over the last seven and a half years.'"

glenda waggoner

We should never give NBC the benefit of the
doubt. They are at war with President Bush,
America and, we, the uninformed, selfish, unworldly conservatives. All the MSM believe
we are plain evil to believe in our country
and each other-that good will triumph over
bad-and doubt Karl Rove is responsible for
everything. They(MSM) are laugh riots with a
bully pulpit and we should be afraid-IF-we
continue to let them get away with it.

MikeS

Most news organizations have developed the core capability to discover and verify facts. Yet, somehow they believe those activities are beneath them. Instead, they prefer to manufacture fictitious narratives and advocate that people accept those narratives as fact, even when that goal requires exaggeration and deceit.

Pofarmer

What this country needs is a good journalist malpractice law.

Unfortunately they are doing the opposite by enacting journalist shield laws.

Paul

I think that a lot of the people that go to journalism schools secretly want to be heroes speaking truth to power, and bagging big game like Republican politicians and corporate fat cats. They are generally geeky liberal types to weak and cowardly for real hero stuff like joining the armed forces, but they crave the status of "warriors" all the more so for being nerds. That coupled with the inherent envy and thirst for revenge and comeuppance that fuels all leftist sentiment and you have the collective psychological profile of the MSM. Looking at it this way it's behavior simply couldn't be any different than it is.

JM Hanes

Here's to less journalism and more reporting!

bgates

Have we already ceded the field to this idea (I think we have), that the networks are understood to favor one party or candidate over another, but in the meantime we'll hope and trust that they'll maintain their "objectivity?"
Objectivity was always a mirage; the choice was between having the biases out in the open or hidden and denied. They're getting more open lately, which is a good thing.

Anybody see anything in the MSM about the 31,000 scientists....9,000 of them are PhD's. Man, I hope not. A 'scientist' without a PhD is considerably more suspect than a 'lawyer' without a JD.

sbw

Po: enacting journalist shield laws

I'm against those, too. Journalist is an accolade earned fresh each day. One day an employee of the MSM is a journalist, and the next day not. One day a blogger is a journalist, and the next day not.

What sets principled press apart is its willingness to publish and pay the consequence of breaking the law.

Paul: a lot of the people that go to journalism schools secretly want to be heroes

Nah. They go because a major in Communications is easy. No math. No science. No philosophy. No labwork. No masters degree or PhD either. They go because they are undirected and lazy, although they can't admit it to themselves.

And the professors are simply students who toughed out the BA and completed a masters thesis or more, and now propagate more communications graduates, but now with classes in video editing, Photoshop and inDesign. But don't bother to suggest a little introspection to journalism professors. They squeal as loudly as Democrats when they cry, "Foul!"

Danube of Thought

"They're getting more open lately, which is a good thing."

I would agree that it's a good thing, if indeed they were open, but they're not. Some newspapers are--they identify themselves as Republican or Democratic papers. If NBC held itself out as a Democratic network--which it is--the whole undertaking would be a lot more palatable.

Is it true that "scientist" implies a PhD? I'd never heard that.

I know that, at least in some circles, "nuclear physicist" means a person with a doctorate in nuclear physics, which is why it used to drive me up the wall when Jimmy Carter would describe himself as a nuclear physicist. But then he described Bob Dylan as a "close personal friend." Bob musta loved that one.

HoosierHoops

which is why it used to drive me up the wall when Jimmy Carter would describe himself as a nuclear physicist.
Danube:
I may be wrong but i thought he had an Nuclear engineering degree.. I know he was a captain on a nuclear sub.
You'd think that job would have taught him to make power packed descions in a snap and show great overall leadership.
Yet he never showed those traits.

Danube of Thought

No, HH, he didn't have a nuclear engineering degree, and he was never captain of anything, let alone a nuclear sub (although one is named for him).

As a naval officer, after serving in at least one destroyer, he was accepted into the Rickover nuclear training program. He didn't complete the program; he was allowed to leave the service to return home and run the family farm. Even had he completed the program, it would not have resulted in a degree.

Danube of Thought

Here's some relevant info from the infallible Wikipedia:

"Carter did post-graduate work, studying nuclear reactor engineering for several months at Union College starting in March 1953. This followed Carter's first-hand experience as part of a group of American and Canadian servicemen who took part in cleaning up after a nuclear meltdown at Canada's Chalk River Laboratories reactor.

"Upon the death of his father in July 1953, however, Lieutenant Carter immediately resigned his commission and was discharged from the Navy on October 9, 1953. This cut short his nuclear power training school, and he was never able to serve on a nuclear submarine, as the first of the fleet was launched January 17, 1955, over a year after his discharge from the Navy."

clarice

That's how I remembered it DOT but HH didn't just pull that out of thin air, I also seem to recall that Carter puffed up his nuclear background and an adoring press played along. (What else is new?)

Rick Ballard

"Is it true that "scientist" implies a PhD? I'd never heard that."

It may imply it to some but it's good to remember that Steve McIntyre and Ross McKitrick have plucked a number of PhD's right down to pin feathers based upon the PhD's rather ephemeral grasp of the statistics with which they purport to demonstrate the causal links which put the fraudulent A next to GW. I would also note that AFAIK, Anthony Watts does not possess a terminal degree but has been able to demonstrate the rather dismal state of the surface stations in the US from which much of the data which purports to support the A component.

It was a very small coterie of PhD's who constructed the Potemkin Village of AGW through publication of incestuously self referential "scientific" papers which fail the basic standards regarding documentation and archiving of data used to draw conclusions.

HoosierHoops

yes clarice.. I could have sworn he said he was captain of a sub.. but i read the biography a minute ago and it follows what dot said.
That sure solves the mystery of why Carter was such a poor leader..He never did lead anyone in the military..

Danube of Thought

I've always considered that anyone who has at least a B.S. degree and has been published in any of the hard sciences is properly called a scientist. Which is a far higher threshhold than that required of an "environmentalist."

By the way, at least in California you don't need a JD to be a lawyer--you simply need to pass the state bar exam. And if you do have the JD but are not a current member of the bar, practicing law is a misdemeanor.

Rick Ballard

DoT,

Your definition would exclude Thomas Edision (wrt the degree). I suppose the equivalent of the bar exam in science is the development and successful defense of a "new" idea using a rigorous application of the scientific method. That's probably a bit overbroad but the grant of a degree is probably a bit too narrow - even with the publication stipulation attached.

Danube of Thought

My modern definition would also exclude the likes of Archimedes, Copernicus and Galileo.

The test you propose works for me. Back in the 60's those were the requirements for an M.S. in many places.

Gmax

Archiving = hiding from view. The antithesis of most scientific process and peer review.

Danube of Thought

Anyhow...

Here's a little bit of info:

"The list of scientists includes 9,021 Ph.D.s, 6,961 at the master's level, 2,240 medical doctors and 12,850 carrying a bachelor of science or equivalent academic degree."

The 31,000 are those who responded to something called the Petition Project, which evidently was begun about ten years ago, around the time of the Kyoto craze. There is to be (or has been?) some sort of announcement at the National Press Club, but let us see what kind of coverage it gets.

May we assume that the skepticism demonstrated by the MSM will be commensurate with that with which they have greeted, say, "An Inconvenient Truth?"

Rick Ballard

Gmax,

In this instance "nonarchival" is the method of choice for keeping data (collected on the public dime) from being examined. Climate Audit provides a nice example here. That piece also contains most of the names of the scientists at the core of the "creator's syndicate" responsible for development of the scare.

Gmax

Without looking I am sure Hockey stick Mann of no you can not see my undelying data, and NASA Bush is muzzling me Hansen of no you cant see the data accumulated on the public tab by NASA fame, are on the list. What other three card monty players are there?

Gmax

Rick

Your link goes to a Sheep Mountain piece that while a good example of something being wrong with the data, is unexplained presently. I dont see where it names names in the cabal however.

Rick Ballard

Gmax,

Jones, Juckes, Thompson (ice cores) - there is a list of subjects on the left at CA under "Multiproxy Studies" from which the core group can be derived. The missing Graybill data is an example of innocuous nonarchiving. He had a reason for his focus on strip bark but his thin sample was grabbed and presented by others as "representative". That Figure 1 graph with the Ababneh/Graybill overlay demonstrates a portion of the derivation of Mann's hockeystick. Thompson's ice core data is the other "proxy" which provided a very large part of the blade so beloved by Algor.

One way to look at AGW is that, if it were a stock promotion, most of these fellows would have spent some time in front of SEC investigators before they were sent over to DoJ for prosecution for fraud. I do not include Graybill in that group, although I believe his silence concerning the misuse of his data is reprehensible.

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