In an opinion piece praising Republican Senator Susan Collins for backing Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, the Wall Street Journal editorial board used the Senate’s “advise an consent” duties to make a joke about rape. “Susan Collins Consents,” the headline states. While some have defended the Journal by claiming they were only referring to “advise and consent,” given the circumstances of Kavanaugh’s nomination — which was stalled by sexual assault allegations — it’s very unlikely that the Rupert Murdoch owned paper did not intend “consent” as a double entendre. The Journal is also the same paper that published an op-ed by Kavanaugh in-which he defended himself against the allegations and tried to justify his emotional outbursts during last week’s hearings. The newspaper’s headline choice was fiercely condemned by journalists and pundits on Twitter:
Surveys about “media trust” suffer from a definitional problem. “Do you trust the media?” is a meaningful question only if we know what “the media” is. Is it The New York Times and CNN? Fox News and Breitbart? Occupy Democrats and your uncle’s memes on Facebook? In Gallup’s data on that question — which asks about “the mass media, such as newspapers, TV, and radio” — 72 percent of Americans trusted the media in 1976, post-Watergate. By 2016, that was down to 32 percent. But the media in 1976 was your local daily, Walter Cronkite, John Chancellor, and Harry Reasoner. “The media” is something fundamentally different now, and a decline in trust is a rational reaction to that, even in an environment less polarized than our own. All this is to say that I find trust questions about specific news organizations a bit more useful, since you know with
Continue reading "Here’s how much Americans trust 38 major news organizations (hint: not all that much!)"
As Judge Brett Kavanaugh remains bogged down by allegations of sexual assault and drunken debauchery, the SCOTUS nominee took to the Wall Street Journal to defend himself, lamenting his treatment and assuring readers of his impartiality. In an op-ed published Thursday night, Kavanaugh noted his “long record of advancing and promoting women,” and described himself as a fair-minded individual, who does “not decide cases based on personal or policy preferences.” “I am not a pro-plaintiff or pro-defendant judge,” he wrote. “I am not a pro-prosecution or pro-defense judge. I am a pro-law judge.” “My time in high school and college, more than 30 years ago, has been ridiculously distorted,” Kavanaugh said. “My wife and daughters have faced vile and violent threats.” Such accusations, the judge said, prompted him to speak emotionally during last Thursday’s hearing in which he testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee against a Continue reading "Kavanaugh Addresses His ‘Sharp’ Tone at Hearing in WSJ Op-Ed: ‘I Said a Few Things I Should Not Have Said’"
In 1954, at the moment history tells us that Sen. Joe McCarthy’s witch hunt had already lost some of its power, he still held a 35 percent approval rating among Americans, down only 10 points from four years earlier. Twenty years later, after the Senate Watergate Committee opened its hearings and news accounts had pilloried Richard Nixon, he still held a 44 percent approval rating. Even about a year later, as he awaited his getaway helicopter, a quarter of Americans thought highly of him. Now, 45 years later, the 45th president finds himself seemingly cornered by criminal convictions of his associates, the most unflattering of tell-all portraits, and one of his own anonymously belittling him in the pages of The New York Times, Trump tests the bottom of 40th percentile in recent polls. This history matters, as we try to put into perspective the week’s escalation in the unprecedented Continue reading "Newsonomics: What the anonymous New York Times op-ed shows us about the press now"
A series of reports dropped in the past 12 hours detailing the fallout from a New York Times op-ed, written anonymously by a “senior Trump administration official,” that ripped the president as unfit for office and claimed membership to a secret group inside the government working to thwart his “worst inclinations.” An Axios scoop out Thursday morning reported, per officials, that President Donald Trump is “deeply suspicious of much of the government he oversees,” from lowly agency staffers all the way up to “some handpicked aides inside his own White House.” One senior official told Axios that no one should be surprised by the op-ed, headlined “I Am Part of the Resistance Inside the Trump Administration”, because “there are dozens and dozens of us.” The op-ed came just one day after excerpts from Bob Woodward‘s upcoming book on the administration portrayed a White House packed Continue reading "Stunning Reports Reveal ‘Frantic’ White House Hunt For Anonymous Trump Official"
Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey told a confidant that he overruled his staff on booting conspiracy theorist Alex Jones off the platform, according to a new Wall Street Journal report. Amidst a raging public debate last month over whether Jones should be removed from social media platforms, Facebook, Apple Music, Spotify and YouTube all banned the controversial personality. Jones and his website Infowars still have a place on Twitter, however. And per the Wall Street Journal, Dorsey personally made the call:
Last month, after Twitter’s controversial decision to allow conspiracy theorist Alex Jones to remain on its platform, Mr. Dorsey told one person that he had overruled a decision by his staff to kick Mr. Jones off, according to a person familiar with the discussion. Twitter disputes that account and says Mr. Dorsey wasn’t involved in those discussions.Dorsey pulled a similar move, according to the Journal, in November 2016 Continue reading "Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey Reportedly Overruled Staff to Keep Alex Jones on Platform"
The Wall Street Journal‘s op-ed writers can, by and large, be considered friendly to President Donald Trump — at least, more so than those who work for many other outlets. But with friends like these, who needs enemies? On Tuesday, the Journal ripped apart the president’s trade deal with Mexico in a scathing op-ed. “We’ll reserve judgment until we see the fine print,” the editorial read, “but on first inspection this is half a Nafta that contains some improvements but is notably worse in many ways.” The Journal‘s editorial cited several major issues with the pact. Notably, Canada’s exclusion raised eyebrows on the Journal’s editorial board. “The new deal has many problems, however, not least that it excludes Canada,” the editorial read. “U.S. Trade Rep Robert Lighthizer used the desire of Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto to sign a deal before he leaves office to raise Continue reading "Friendly Fire? WSJ Ridicules Trade Deal with Mexico: ‘Worse’ Than NAFTA Pullout"