Tags: Obama | Will | Be | Mauled

Prediction: Obama Will Be Mauled by Media; Rush; Whitman; More

Sunday, 15 Feb 2009 05:26 PM

By Special From Newsmax' Most Informed Sources

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Headlines (Scroll down for complete stories):
1. Sen. Stabenow’s Biased Push for Fairness Doctrine
2. Calif. Gov. Candidate Meg Whitman: Gay Couples Can Adopt
3. Condi Sees Future Peace in the Middle East
4. Ad Age: Media Will Maul Obama
5. Survey: Rush’s Audience Most Conservative
6. Obama to Make Cocktail Parties a Fixture at the White House
7. Bush Flaunted Oval Office ‘Dress Code’
 

1. Sen. Stabenow’s ‘Outrageous Conflict of Interest’ on Fairness Doctrine

It’s been reported that Democratic Sen. Debbie Stabenow wants hearings on “accountability” in radio, suggesting Democrats are eyeing a return of the Fairness Doctrine.

What’s not been widely reported is that the Michigan lawmaker is married to a media executive with ties to left-wing radio.

During a recent interview with syndicated radio-host Bill Press, Stabenow said: “I think it’s absolutely time to pass a standard. Now, whether it’s called the 'fairness standard,' whether it’s called something else — I absolutely think it’s time to be bringing accountability to the airwaves.”

She didn’t mention that her husband Tom Athans is the co-founder and former CEO of Democracy Radio, which supported “progressive” talk radio, and was executive vice president for programming at left-wing Air America.

Columnist Camille Paglia recently wrote: “Debbie Stabenow, who has been in the aggressive forefront of the campaign to reinstate the Fairness Doctrine, is married to Tom Athans, who works extensively with left-wing radio organizations and was once the executive vice-president of Air America, the liberal radio syndicate that, despite massive publicity from major media, has failed miserably to win a national audience.

“Stabenow's outrageous conflict of interest has of course been largely ignored by the prestige press, which should have been demanding that she recuse herself from all political involvement with this issue.”

Originally instituted in 1949 by the FCC, the Fairness Doctrine required broadcasters using the public airwaves to give equal time to opposing political views. The FCC repealed the measure in 1987.

Since talk radio is overwhelmingly dominated by conservative hosts, and liberal talk radio draws few listeners, the “equal time” provision would likely force many radio stations to pull popular conservative hosts from the air rather than air low-rated liberal hosts.

“I remain incredulous that any Democrat who professes liberal values would give a moment's thought to supporting a return of the Fairness Doctrine to muzzle conservative shows,” Paglia opined.

“Government surveillance of the ideological content of talk radio is a shocking first step toward totalitarianism.”

Editor's Note:



2. Calif. Gov. Candidate Meg Whitman: Gay Couples Can Adopt

Former eBay Chief Executive Meg Whitman announced she will run for California governor next year and disclosed a decidedly conservative approach to the state’s fiscal crisis.

But she outlined several other stands that could turn off the Republican base in the GOP’s 2010 primary.

California has frozen tax refunds and Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger unveiled plans to lay off as many as 10,000 state employees if legislators failed to pass a budget.

But in a wide-ranging interview with the Los Angeles Times, Whitman said the state should not ask even residents in the highest-income bracket to pay more taxes.

“One percent of the people in California pay 50 percent of the taxes,” said the new candidate, who worked on Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign. “I am not in favor of raising taxes on anyone right now.”

She also favors scaling back state regulations to spur economic growth and called for new cuts in corporate taxes.

Among the other stands she outlined in the Times interview:

  • Whitman supported Proposition 8, which banned same-sex marriage in the state, but says the thousands of same-sex marriages that took place last year before the ban should be legally recognized. Proposition 8 backers oppose that sentiment.
  • She also said gay and lesbian couples should be able to adopt children.
  • Whitman said she opposed Proposition 187, intended to deny education, healthcare, and other public services to undocumented immigrants. It passed in 1994.
  • But she said hospitals and law enforcement agencies should be required to report undocumented immigrants to federal authorities, and she opposes issuing driver’s licenses to illegal aliens.
  • Whitman would support new offshore oil drilling, and opposes Schwarzenegger’s efforts to force automakers to adopt emission standards more stringent than those stipulated by the federal government.

Whitman called herself "a lifelong Republican," but she waited until 2007 to switch her registration from nonpartisan to Republican.

Editor's Note:



3. Condi Sees Future Peace in the Middle East

Two weeks after leaving office as secretary of state, Condoleezza Rice defended President George W. Bush’s Middle East policies and said she can foresee peace in the Middle East.

Rice spoke at the Anti-Defamation League’s annual dinner in Palm Beach, Fla., on Feb. 5, where she became the first woman to be honored with the organization’s Distinguished Statesman Award.

Referring to her service in the Bush administration, Rice said, “It’s been an extraordinary eight years and, yes, quite frankly, I’m glad it’s over.”

Rice told the gathering that when she hears criticism that Bush’s policies worsened the situation in the Middle East, she wonders which Middle East they are talking about.

“Would that be the Middle East with Saddam Hussein in power, the Middle East in which he put 300,000 of his people in mass graves?” she said in remarks reported by the Palm Beach Daily News.

“Was it that Middle East that was so good in 2001? Or maybe it was the Middle East that, below the surface, was spawning al-Qaida . . .  Or perhaps it was the Middle East that refused the agreement of Camp David in 2000 and instead launched another intifada when hundreds of Israelis died in Tel Aviv discos and pizza parlors.

“President Bush — and I’m proud to have served with him — did not accept that Middle East.”

Rice said the Middle East will change for the better “because, ultimately, men and women in the Middle East will not accept that it is all right to kill the innocent. Ultimately, men and women in the Middle East will not accept that is all right to treat women like second-, third-, and fourth-class citizens. Ultimately, men and women in the Middle East will want to live in peace with Israel.”

Editor's Note:



4. Ad Age: Media Will Maul Obama

The mainstream media have had a love affair with Barack Obama during the campaign and transition, many have observed — but the honeymoon may soon be over.

That’s the view of the trade publication Advertising Age, which predicts that the media will inevitably begin shining a more critical light on the new president.

In an article headlined “Fading love affair: How the media will maul Obama,” Ad Age notes, “It’s been conventional wisdom for at least a year now that the media is ‘in the tank’ for Obama . . . 

“But all political infatuations must come to an end — and already you can begin to see the media straining mightily to assert its ‘objectivity.’”

Ad Age cites an editorial in the Los Angeles Times, which was staunchly supportive of Obama during the campaign, pledging that the paper will “watch Obama, to hold him to his work, and to report back.”

And another Obama supporter, The New York Times, ran a story headlined: “Signs of trouble emerge in transition’s last days.”

The Ad Age article stated that Obama “so far continues to appear deeply competent and eerily disciplined. He just won’t cooperate with the media’s need for a narrative shift. But no matter. The media always finds a way.”

Editor's Note:



5. Survey: Rush Limbaugh’s Audience Most Conservative

An analysis of 39 news programs and networks by the Pew Research Center found that radio talk-show host Rush Limbaugh has the most conservative audience.

According to Pew’s 2008 news media survey, 80 percent of Limbaugh’s listeners identify themselves as conservatives, while 7 percent say they’re moderate and 10 percent are liberal.

On TV, Fox News’ “Hannity & Colmes” — now just “Hannity” — has an audience that is 68 percent conservative, while Fox’s “The O’Reilly Factor” has a 66 percent conservative audience.

“Lou Dobbs,” “Hardball,” and “Larry King Live” also have audiences that are more conservative than liberal. In fact, 35 percent of the audience of all 39 media outlets identify themselves as conservative, and only 20 percent say they’re liberal.

But just 22 percent of the audience for “The Daily Show” and 14 percent for “The Colbert Report” say they are conservative.

Limbaugh’s show also has the highest percentage of males in his audience, 72 percent, compared to 67 percent for Hannity and 53 percent for O’Reilly.

Pew found that 33 percent of Limbaugh’s listeners are college graduates. The national average is 28 percent.

Editor's Note:



6. Obama to Make Cocktail Parties a Fixture at the White House

President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle have been opening up their new home to bipartisan gatherings and hope to make Wednesday evening cocktail parties a tradition at the White House.

Republicans actually outnumbered Democrats at a cocktail party Obama hosted soon after taking office. His Super Bowl party also had a bipartisan flavor, with four Republicans among the 15 legislators on the invitation list.

More recently, the Obamas on Wednesday hosted House caucus leaders from the moderate Blue Dog Democrats and the Congressional Black Caucus.

Sen. Clair McCaskill, a Missouri Democrat, told Politico.com that Obama likes a mixed crowd because “he knows if he’s around people like that, he won’t get everything sugarcoated. He wants to make sure he stays grounded and wants to hear the good, the bad, and the ugly.”

At halftime during the Super Bowl party, Obama chatted with Sen. Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania. Specter would later become one of three Republicans who voted for the economic stimulus bill in the Senate.

The Obamas, Politico reported, are “unleashing a bipartisan charm offensive and exploiting every square inch of their new home to make friends and influence rivals.”

Editor's Note:



7. Bush Flaunted Oval Office ‘Dress Code’

President George W. Bush’s former Chief of Staff Andrew Card has dressed down President Barack Obama and his staffers for showing a lack of “respect” for the Oval Office by not wearing jackets.

And he said that was never allowed in Bush’s Oval Office.

But was that really the case?

"There should be a dress code of respect," Card said on TV’s "Inside Edition."

"When you have a dress code in the Supreme Court and a dress code on the floor of the Senate, floor of the House, I think it's appropriate to have an expectation that there will be a dress code that respects the office of the president . . .  

“I wish that [Obama] would wear a suit coat and tie."

But the day after Card made his comments, The Huffington Post ran a picture showing President Bush in shirtsleeves shortly after his first inauguration.

And the Web site Americablog ran a photo showing CIA Director George Tenet without a jacket at an Oval Office meeting with the president and other staffers.

Presidents Bill Clinton, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, Gerald Ford, and John F. Kennedy have all been photographed without a jacket in the Oval Office.

Editor's Note:



Editor's Notes:

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