Recently in Media Category

Talk about yellow journalism

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This is just delightful - I love it when President Trump has some fun at the expense of the mainstream media - from The New York Post:

Drug testing floated for White House press corps
One proposal on dealing with the media that was pitched to President-elect Donald Trump’s transition team calls for drug testing the White House press corps.

Trump’s attacks on the mainstream media were a cornerstone of his campaign and last week he called BuzzFeed a “failing pile of garbage,” but forcing reporters to undergo random drug tests would provoke a media meltdown.

His Press Secretary said this:

Sean Spicer, who was spokesman for the Republican National Committee, is Trump’s press secretary, and told me, “I support whatever security measures are recommended by the Secret Service.”

“Journalists who are at the White House more than one day per week should be subject to drug screenings to occur no more than twice a year at random times,” the memo states. “Refusal to comply should exclude them from credentialing entirely.”

The job applicant also proposed taking away the right of the White House Correspondents’ Association to control reporters’ seating arrangements in the press briefing room.

The current system favors TV networks and certain newspapers at the expense of more ideologically diverse Web sites, bloggers and podcasters.

The Trump administration, the candidate wrote, “should clear a path to communicate more directly with the people and end White House press practices that serve no useful purpose other than feeding the beast.”

Makes perfect sense - many of these people have been there for ever. So much of what they say are things that they think we want or need to hear. Wrong. Dead. Wrong. We are adults and we can make up our own minds.

Our media - as unbiased as ever

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They failed following a progressive bias, now they are casting about for a conservative bias. From The Hollywood Reporter:

TV Networks, Studios Shifting Program Strategies in the Trump Age: "Are We Telling the Right Stories?"
In the days following Donald Trump's stunning presidential win, ABC Studios chief Patrick Moran called Black-ish creator Kenya Barris. The men had a project at ABC about a pair of politically divided pundits who fall in love. Suddenly it felt more relevant.

But now Moran wanted to be sure both sides of the spectrum were being presented with equal credibility. "In years past, it would be very easy to let one side feel like the cartoon and have the show assume that the audience is siding with the other," Moran says of the liberal slant that often permeates Hollywood output. Barris agreed and has begun courting right-wing voices for his writers room: "There was no way I wanted to do something that was going to further the divide in this country." On Dec. 6, the project was ordered to pilot.

That exchange came on the heels of what Moran describes as a "wake-up call." Over at ABC, entertainment chief Channing Dungey acknowledges that the rise of Trump and his blue-collar support forced her to question whether her programming was too focused on upper-income brackets. Similar check-ins have taken place across the TV industry as executives try to better understand and appeal to a demographic to which many hadn't paid enough attention. "[The election] made the ground shake underneath media," TLC president Nancy Daniels tells THR, "and now everybody is taking a hard look: Are we telling the right stories? Are we reaching the right people?"

Hey media - we are intelligent and we can form our own opinions. We also have enough sense to know when we are being pandered to and we do not like that. How about you report the facts (and just the facts) and let us form our own opinions. That keeps things very simple on both sides of the fence. If you report the facts, we will continue to subscribe to your offerings. If you fail, we will drop you like a hot potato as you can no longer be trusted.

After all, look at what The New York Times just had to do: New York Times Will Vacate 8 Floors In Its HQ To Generate "Significant Rental Revenue"

Newspaper endorsements - a closer look

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Don Surber is an ex-newspaperman and knows the business inside and out. He writes this today: Deplorable Don Surber:

President Trump's election shows the value of newspaper endorsements
The newspapers of America have spoken: 243 endorsed Hillary, 20 endorsed Trump, 9 endorsed Gary Johnson, and 1 endorsed Evan McMullin.

Nothing quite says we-hate-our-readers like telling them to vote for someone they refuse to vote for.

You know how many votes Evan McMullin got in the state where the newspaper endorsed him? None, because West Virginia does not count unregistered write-in votes. Nothing quite says out-of-touch-with-reality like endorsing a candidate whose votes won't count.

What is the point of having newspaper endorsements if all you are doing is pissing off your readers? People in thirty states preferred him over her. It wasn't even close.

Don quotes from a couple of these newspapers and offers this:

Newspaper circulations have fallen and they cannot get up. They blame the Internet, but the fact is the social justice warriors in management killed the goose that laid the golden eggs. Newspapers survived radio and television. They should have survived the Internet, but the rock bed of newspaper subscribers are middle-class families who tend to be conservative, while even nominally conservative newspapers are run by social justice warriors. They want to save the world.

Word...

Wonderful film - reissued

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Barry Lyndon is an amazing visual sweep of the imagination. One of Stanley Kubrick's finest. It has been remastered and is being released to theaters in England on July 29th. No word when it will arrive in the colonies. Trailer:

Great bit of trivia is that it was shot entirely in natural light - the candlelight scenes too. Kubrick had to have a lens built that had a large enough aperture to be able to do this. He was able to adapt a lens that had been custom-built by Zeiss for the Apolo Space Program. Here and here.

Already seeing some trailers for some awesome films. Here is the trailer for a TV show on Starz: American Gods. Based on a novel written by Neil Gaiman:

Fun times at FOX News

One of the reporters at FOX News had her show cancelled due to poor ratings. Gretchen Carlson countered by saying that FOX News CEO - Roger Ailes - made sexual advances towards her. Now, FOX Anchor Megyn Kelly is claiming the same thing and asking owners Rupert Murdoch and sons to fire Ailes.

This just in from Breitbart:

Exclusive — Fox News Stars Stand With Roger Ailes Against Megyn Kelly, More Than 50 Fox Contributors, All Primetime, Willing To Walk
All of Fox News’ primetime lineup is willing to walk out of the network with chief executive and chairman Roger Ailes if he is pushed out by Rupert Murdoch and his family, Breitbart News has confirmed.

Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity, Greta Van Susteren, Shepard Smith, Bret Baier, Eric Bolling, Neil Cavuto, Kimberly Guilfoyle, Laura Ingraham, Geraldo Rivera, Juan Williams, Jeanine Pirro, Bo Dietl, Monica Crowley, all of the Fox and Friends hosts, and at least 50 Fox News contributors are willing to depart the network if Ailes is ousted, and leave with him to form a new network, one of the network’s anchors told Breitbart News late Tuesday.

All of them stand against Megyn Kelly, and all of them stand with Roger Ailes.

Quite the A-List - FOX would be reduced to a smoking crater if even half of these people left. If they formed a new network, I would switch from watching FOX just to see what was up. Talk about making the rubble bounce. A bit more on Ms. Kelley:

“If Fox wants to become the ‘all about Megyn Network,’ that’s fine,” one top Fox News host said. “We stand with Roger. And real anger has emerged that the so-called Megyn incident happened 10 years ago. The consensus among the hosts and contributors is: ‘Why didn’t she say anything then? Really, the same woman that posed half naked in GQ? The same woman on Howard Stern saying what?’”

Much more at the site including the whole kerfuffle over the Iowa debate which Trump skipped when he found out it would be hosted by Kelly. The lady is a slow-motion train-wreck. Time for a bowl of popcorn and just sit back and watch.

A big surprise - NOT!

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From Associated Press:

Poll: Getting facts right key to Americans' trust in media
Trust in the news media is being eroded by perceptions of inaccuracy and bias, fueled in part by Americans' skepticism about what they read on social media.

Just 6 percent of people say they have a lot of confidence in the media, putting the news industry about equal to Congress and well below the public's view of other institutions. In this presidential campaign year, Democrats were more likely to trust the news media than Republicans or independents.

Emphasis mine - I knew it was bad but this is beyond belief. And what is the media doing to correct this deficiency?

. . . crickets . . .

Spot the recording engineer

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Heh...

Dumb as a box of rocks

From Steven Simon and Daniel Benjamin writing at the New York Times Opinion Page:

Could Paris Happen Here?

Excuuuuse me - it has happened here.

Anyone remember 9/11?

For the canonical list of all Islamic terrorist attacks in the United States (starting April 14th, 1972) visit this link: Islamic Terror Attacks on American Soil. The butchers bill is 75 attacks by muslims against US citizens, a total of 3,106 murdered and 1,685 wounded.

Religion of Peace my ass...

Truer words were never spoken

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20150806-media.jpg

Our media at work - a global problem

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'Nuff said:

20141203-truth.jpg

Swiped from Small Dead Animals.

Spot on!

 

Halt and Catch Fire - first show

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I was excited to see the announcement of the show - I remember that era very fondly.

Watched the first episode tonight and they nailed it.  At times in my life, I have been involved with "big business" both as an employee and on a consulting level and the characters in tonight's show played it very well.

Looking forward to the rest of the series.  The producers got the continuity and the actual technology 100% right.

Next up is Manhattan on July 27. I know a lot about that project so it will be interesting to see how well they get the science. Kind of sad in a way that they developed two completely different types of nuclear weapons from scratch in less than three years and all this administration has to show for itself is a failed website.

I hate to be snarky but when the opportunity presents itself...

 

And finally, Holy Crap!  Browsing through a list of upcoming shows, I see that Outlander is scheduled for August 9th.

If you are not familiar with Diana Gabldon's work, you are in for a royal treat. The books are strongly chronological so you need to start at the first one: Outlander

Our mainstream Media

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Sums it up nicely: 20140520-media.jpg

FARGO

This show just keeps getting better and better. They tied in some stuff from the original movie.

Going to get the DVDs for the store. if only to re-watch them myself...

Alright now - I am officially hooked.

The new series on FOX's FX network sucks you right in.

If you liked the original Coen Bros movie, do yourself a favor and watch FARGO on FX on Tuesday nights.

The writing and the casting is spot on. Billy Bob Thornton is having way too much fun being really really bad. FARGO website: FARGO

Kermit Gosnell - the movie

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Kermit who? Kermit Gosnell was America's most prolific serial killer until his capture and trial. A great group of people are making a movie about him and raising funds through indiegogo. This is the same team that filmed Not Evil Just Wrong and FrackNation. The trailer:

British Pathè online

British Pathè is an English film company. From their About page:
About Us
British Pathè is one of the oldest media companies in the world.

Their roots lie in 1890s Paris where their founder, Charles Pathè, pioneered the development of the moving image.

They were established in London in 1902, and by 1910 were producing their famous bi-weekly newsreel the Pathè Gazette. After the First World War they started producing various Cinemagazines as well. By 1930 they were producing the Gazette, the Pathètone Weekly, the Pathè Pictorial and Eve's Film Review, covering entertainment, culture and womens' issues.

By the time Pathè finally stopped producing the cinema newsreel in 1970 they had accumulated 3500 hours of filmed history amounting to over 90,000 individual items.
Those 90,000 clips are now completely online and free for non-commercial use. Check out British Pathè There is also a YouTube page here.

Skier meet avalanche

From the Denver, CO CBS affiliate:

Skier Captures Himself Surviving Avalanche On Video


A backcountry skier survived an avalanche that he triggered Saturday morning on Berthoud Pass and it was all caught on video.

Lance Light said he was prepared but says things could have ended differently for anyone who doesn't know the risks.

The video came from a camera mounted on Light's helmet. It captures every moment before, during and after his ride through the avalanche.

"It was just over so quick, it was crazy," Light said.

Despite reports of dangerous avalanche conditions, Light and a friend decided to go backcountry skiing on Berthoud Pass. They had the gear and the knowledge to know what to watch for but decided to take a risk on a more questionable run.

Glad that he had the good luck to get through this -- could have gone horribly wrong in a heartbeat...

Some interesting demographics

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From Newsbusters:
CNN and MSNBC Lose Almost Half Their Viewers in One Year
It's been a tough year for the liberal cable news outlets.

Data released Tuesday show CNN shedding 48 percent of total viewers since last November and MSNBC dropping 45 percent.

The numbers were even worse in the all important demographic of people aged 25 to 54 as CNN's ratings dropped 59 percent and MSNBC's 52 percent.

In an off-election year, and with last November's numbers skewed higher as a result of the presidential election, it should be expected for ratings to decline.

However, Fox News didn't see close to these losses. In total day, FNC is only down 18 percent since last November and 30 percent in the demo.

As you might imagine, prime time numbers were also down.
People are getting fatigued by the constant disconnect between the reported news and the reality. Leaving the liberal media camp a lot more than the conservative one.

Danny Trejo - Machete Kills

His new film opens tomorrow -- looks like a lot of fun:
Grantland has a nice biography:
Nothing Can Kill Danny Trejo
Danny Trejo has been stabbed, shot, maimed, crushed, hung, choked, decapitated, and blown to bits. He's had hypodermic needles jabbed into his neck. He's had a power drill run through his brain. He's had an immolating crucifix speared into his vampire heart. Charles Bronson and Robert De Niro have killed him. Stone Cold Steve Austin and 50 Cent have killed him. Mickey Rourke has killed him twice.

In 2010, after nearly three decades of bit parts as brutal, doomed toughs, Trejo finally starred in a movie, as the title character in Machete, a mythical, mass-murdering executor of justice. In a couple of days, the gonzo sequel Machete Kills will hit theaters, cementing Trejo as just about the least likely Hollywood franchise star you can imagine.

Not that that'll change anything. He's 69 years old, the deep grooves and puffy lids of his cracked, cragged face a document of a life lived hard. And he's still on hand to die for you.
A long and well written biography -- Danny has led an "interesting" life to say the least...

Well Crap - RIP James Gandolfini

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From FOX News:
Actor James Gandolfini of 'The Sopranos' dies at 51
Actor James Gandolfini, who rose to fame as crime boss Tony Soprano on the �The Sopranos,� has died of a possible heart attack in Italy, HBO confirmed to Fox News.

There were few immediate details surrounding his death at 51, although he was on vacation in Rome, his managers said.

Gandolfini, a New Jersey native, appeared in films and on the stage before his breakthrough part in 1999 as Mafia boss Tony Soprano in the HBO series, which brought him three Emmys during its six-year run.

�We're all in shock and feeling immeasurable sadness at the loss of a beloved member of our family,� said a statement from HBO. �He was special man, a great talent, but more importantly a gentle and loving person who treated everyone no matter their title or position with equal respect.

�He touched so many of us over the years with his humor, his warmth and his humility. Our hearts go out to his wife and children during this terrible time. He will be deeply missed by all of us. �
Our prayers go out to those he left behind. Fifty-one is way to young.

Color me surprised - NOT!

From Gallup:
Americans' Confidence in Newspapers Continues to Erode
The percentage of Americans saying they have "a great deal" or "quite a lot" of confidence in newspapers has been generally trending downward since 1979, when it reached a high of 51%.

Newspapers rank near the bottom on a list of 16 societal institutions Gallup measured in a June 1-4 survey. Television news is tied with newspapers on the list, with 23% of Americans also expressing confidence in it. That is up slightly from the all-time low of 21% found last year. The only institutions television news and newspapers beat out this year are big business, organized labor, Health Maintenance Organizations (HMOs), and Congress.
The newspaper story is bad enough but I love who they beat out. Congress has a 10% confidence rating. Organized Labor has 20%. Pure schadenfreude...

Hollywood clueless

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From The Washington Times:
Sacred mystery: Blockbuster ratings for �The Bible� confound Hollywood
Sure, it�s easy to criticize Hollywood, but try to remember that the entertainment industry today is an intellectually demanding environment, fraught with cognitively challenging, even intractable, questions, like, to take one recent example: How can the cable mini-series �The Bible� be such a ratings hit when there is no audience for overtly religious entertainment programming?

According to the latest Nielsens, released Tuesday, Sunday night�s telecast of �The Bible,� produced by husband-and-wife team Mark Burnett and Roma Downey for basic cable�s History channel, managed to attract more viewers than anything on broadcast network NBC � during the entire week.

The second installment of this five-part mini-series airing at 8-10 p.m. Sundays through Easter � the first foray into scripted drama for �Survivor� creator Burnett � drew 10.8 million viewers, good for number one in its timeslot and number 11 overall for the week.

Even bigger was part one the week before, which amassed an audience of 13.1 million viewers, cable�s largest of the year. That series premiere topped the ratings for both of the week�s episodes of �American Idol.� (Not the first time the Almighty has bested idols in head-to-head competition in this ancient rivalry � but, still, an impressive feat, even if Fox�s longtime ratings juggernaut is showing signs of slippage.)
I'll have to set the DVR -- don't watch much television (Food Channel or CSpan if anything) I wonder if the producers in Hollywood will take a hint...

An interesting shift in the wind

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First, from February 23rd of this year:
A modest proposal re: The Boston Globe
A great idea from Da Tech Guy:
The Right should buy the Boston Globe�and staff it with conservatives
There has been a lot of talk about what conservatives need to do in order to get their message out to the low information voter. These are the voters who don�t pay attention to the news, don�t watch cable or read blogs much but do read general magazines while waiting at the doctor, who do hear CNN in the background in airports or at their local bar and restaurant.
The problem is those background noises are filled with liberal pap.
Today, from the Chicago Tribune:
Koch Brothers eye L.A. Times, other Tribune newspapers: sources
Charles and David Koch, two of the world's richest men, are interested in Tribune's newspaper assets, which include the Los Angeles Times and the Chicago Tribune, according to sources familiar with situation.

Earlier on Tuesday, L.A. Weekly reported that the Koch brothers were rumored to be interested in either all of the Tribune company, which includes 23 TV stations and national cable network WGN American, or the Tribune newspapers. The report also cited "another rumor" from a Los Angeles Times editorial board member that the Koch brothers are helping U-T San Diego newspaper owner Doug Manchester finance a bid.
The delightful soft popping sound of lefties heads exploding. It would be fun to have what Da TechGuy talked about:
  • Imagine a Movie section where the liberal themes of a picture were noted and tweaked while the conservative themes were highlighted and celebrated.
  • Imagine a culture section where events of a conservative nature were celebrated while liberals pressed to get the press.
  • Imagine reviews of plays with conservative themes getting web space and print space and liberal themes hoping for a line or two.
  • Imagine stories in the Sunday section celebrating historic places, people and sites that highlight America’s conservative History or people who are conservative doing great things for the community.
  • Imagine a whole slew of conservative Journalists cutting their teeth of straight news instead of news with a liberal spin, imagine the farm team it would create.
  • Imagine an editorial page giving conservative opinion day after day after day.
  • And imagine a web site ranked in the top 1500 worldwide and top 350 nationally, a web site that local papers around New England draw stories from giving that public conservative thought as background noise in the same way that liberals have done for ages.
Hell yeah!

An example of media bias

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Suppose that 500,000 people marched in Washington and nobody reported it. That just happened this last weekend and did you hear any news reports? Me neither. From Newsbusters:
ABC and CBS Spike Huge Pro-Life March, Yet Highlight Puny Pro-Gun Control Protest
The annual pro-life march, this year marking the 40th anniversary of the Supreme Court�s Roe v Wade decision, drew tens of thousands to Washington, DC on Friday, but didn�t garner a syllable of coverage on Friday�s World News on ABC nor the CBS Evening News. Yet on Saturday night, both newscasts highlighted a pro-gun control protest in DC which CBS anchor Jim Axelrod pegged at drawing �close to a thousand people.�

The NBC Nightly News noted both protests and on Friday night also reported how a federal appeals court unanimously decided that President Obama violated the Constitution when he made recess appointments to the National Labor Relations Board, a rebuke neither ABC nor CBS found newsworthy.

This 15 seconds from Brian Williams was the totality of broadcast network evening newscast coverage of the pro-life march: �In Washington today, thousands of anti-abortion demonstrators marched to the steps of the Supreme Court, protesting the landmark decision that legalized abortion. Annual �March for Life,� as it�s called, this year coincides with the 40th anniversary of the Roe versus Wade decision.�
Someone is displaying an agenda... More on the event here: March for Life

RIP - Thomas Kinkade

It was always easy to poke fun at him -- he was not a "fine artist", rather an excellent illustrator and an even better self-promoter. From the San Jose Mercury News:
Thomas Kinkade, one of America's most popular painters, dies suddenly in Los Gatos, California at 54
Thomas Kinkade, the "Painter of Light" and one of the most popular artists in America, died suddenly Friday at his Los Gatos home. He was 54.

His family said in a statement that his death appeared to be from natural causes.

"Thom provided a wonderful life for his family," his wife, Nanette, said in a statement. "We are shocked and saddened by his death."

His paintings are hanging in an estimated one of every 20 homes in the United States. Fans cite the warm, familiar feeling of his mass-produced works of art, while it has become fashionable for art critics to dismiss his pieces as tacky. In any event, his prints of idyllic cottages and bucolic garden gates helped establish a brand -- famed for their painted highlights -- not commonly seen in the art world.

"I'm a warrior for light," Kinkade told the Mercury News in 2002, alluding not just to his technical skill at creating light on canvas but to the medieval practice of using light to symbolize the divine. "With whatever talent and resources I have, I'm trying to bring light to penetrate the darkness many people feel."
54 is waay too young. A bit more which reveals that he was someone I would love to have a beer with:
but also enjoyed shooting and blowing up things on his ranch
A true kindred spirit. He was also a devout Christian and also quite the Philanthropist. Sad that it takes someone's passing for me to get a better handle on the content of their character. Easy targets are just that; true and real people are a lot more complex and we treasure them for that...
It was the Enquirer that first broke the Edwards/Hunter story back in 2009. Now this:
EXCLUSIVE: JOHN EDWARDS NAILED BY DEAD WIFE�s VIDEO TESTIMONY!
In a devastating act of ultimate revenge, a dying Elizabeth Ed�wards recorded a bombshell secret videotape for prosecutors � nailing her cheating husband John as he will stand trial on charges that could land him behind bars for 30 years.

That�s the stunning secret behind the federal indictment brought against the disgraced former presidential candi�date on June 3 � following a two-year grand jury investigation into whether he illegally used campaign funds to cover up his affair with his then-pregnant mistress Rielle Hunter.

�Elizabeth wanted to exact revenge against John for destroy�ing their 33-year marriage and family by cheating with Rielle,� source close to the scandal told ENQUIRER.

�It was Elizabeth�s idea to secret�ly record a video and tell what she knew of the affair and John�s horrific betrayal.�
I do not know if the tape would be admissible but still... The Breck Girl will find Karma to be a bitch.

Good news, eh?

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Give a warm welcome to FOX News North. From the Blogmocracy:
And Now�Fox News North, Eh
Actually, it�s Sun News, a Conservative Canadian News Channel, which launched today, eh:
Canada�s first right-wing 24-hour television news network was launched Monday promising to shake up Canadians� views on politics and the day�s events.

But the Quebecor-owned Sun News Network assailed by critics as �Fox News North� continues to suffer from staffing slip-ups and still has not sorted out its distribution.

The specialty channel aims to �challenge the English Canadian TV news establishment,� Quebec media mogul Pierre Karl Peladeau said last year when he unveiled plans for the network. �Far too many Canadians are tuning out completely or changing their dials to American all-news channels,� he said. �Quebecor sees an untapped market opportunity in English Canadian TV news.�

Sun News Network said it would provide Canadians with �hard news� during the day, and opinion and analysis in evening broadcasts, or as its slogan touts �hard news and straight talk.�
And they have a Federal election coming up in a month or so. Should be fun to see the reaction especially just to the North. Vancouver is a very liberal city in a very liberal province...

An interesting news item

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Consider the following paragraph:
Over the weekend the FBI announced that it was investigating Joe Iosbaker for possible connections to overseas terror groups. Iosbaker and his wife Stephanie Weiner, both anti-war activists, are suspected of activities �concerning the material support of terrorism.�
Variations of the above are being reported in the major Chicago news outlets. What is not being reported is that Mr. Iosbaker is an SEIU Union Steward -- basically a middle-level manager. From Warner Todd Huston at Breitbart's Big Journalism:
Chicago Media Omit Fact That FBI Terror Suspect is Chief Steward for SEIU
One might think it would be big news that a Chief Steward for a local chapter of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) is being investigated by the FBI for possible connection to overseas terror networks. Apparently, though, several Chicago news outlets didn�t see a reason to add this little fact to their stories.

And even if it wasn�t big news that the FBI is investigating a union member, one would think that his profession would at least make an appearance somewhere in properly formulated coverage of the story� right?
A bit more:
According to the SEIU Local 73 website, Iosbaker is listed as the Local 73 Chief Steward. Iosbaker was also quite active earlier in the year protesting the closing of the Republic Windows & Doors factory that made the national news. Iosbaker was then listed as an executive board member of the SEIU.

It is interesting to note that this fact escaped most of Chicago�s TV coverage. Michelle Gallardo of ABC 7 TV seems to have forgotten to mention the union connection, CBS channel 2 also missed this fact, WGN TV channel 9 also forgot to mention the SEIU, and Channel 5 NBC also missed it, all accidentally I�m sure.
But it isn�t just TV that missed this fact. The Associated Press also seems to be blind to the fact that Iosbaker is a union operative.
And the media wonders why their numbers are down and why FOX is cleaning their clock...

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