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Howard Kurtz: September 19, 2010 - September 25, 2010

Jon Stewart on GOP deja vu

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10cPostcards From the Pledgewww.thedailyshow.comDaily Show Full EpisodesPolitical HumorTea Party...

By Howard Kurtz  | September 25, 2010; 6:49 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
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O'Donnell: stop youths from having sex

By Howard Kurtz  | September 24, 2010; 8:16 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
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Colbert takes act to Hill

By Howard Kurtz  | September 24, 2010; 2:59 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
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Freed hiker speaks after captivity

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By Howard Kurtz  | September 24, 2010; 1:55 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
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Facebook founder making friends

I had the same initial reaction as many folks to Mark Zuckerberg's sudden outbreak of philanthropy: What's he trying to get out of it? It's all about the movie, isn't it? Why would the Facebook founder give 100 million bucks to schools in the decaying city of Newark, to which he's had no previous connection? Bzzt! Wrong question. A better one is, can this huge gift help turn around one of the nation's failing school systems? Much of the press coverage, though, was downright cynical.

By Howard Kurtz  | September 24, 2010; 11:30 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  Latest stories, Top story  | Tags:  Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, Newark, philanthropy, schools  
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One-click Friday roundup

'Real people' don't make headlines Thursday, Sept. 23 was an important day. But only some in the media treated it that way. The Obama health law remains controversial, and unpopular in many quarters, which is no surprise. It's big and...

By Howard Kurtz  | September 24, 2010; 8:30 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Latest stories  
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'Real people' don't make headlines

Thursday, Sept. 23 was an important day. But only some in the media treated it that way. The Obama health law remains controversial, and unpopular in many quarters, which is no surprise. It's big and complicated and people are understandably worried about costs and coverage. Some of the benefits are front-loaded while the more difficult parts, including the individual mandate to buy insurance, are back-loaded. The Republicans have largely succeeded in painting it as big government run amok. I can't shake the feeling that journalists are mainly interested in the political controversy. As in, how many Democrats are distancing themselves from Obamacare in the midterms, and how many Republicans are running ads attacking it. But now some important benefits have kicked in, benefits that affect real families.

By Howard Kurtz  | September 24, 2010; 6:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
Categories:  Latest stories, Top story  | Tags:  Obama, Obamacare, health care, health reform, media, repeal  
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Palin hits 'Barack Hussein Obama'

By Howard Kurtz  | September 23, 2010; 8:09 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
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Deficit hypocrisy

The headline above pertains to just about everyone in politics these days. They all decry the budget deficit until it comes time to do something specific--that is, painful--to slash it. Take the House Republicans, who released their "Pledge to America" on Thursday. They've been moaning and groaning about the Obama deficits. So what do they do? Call for permanently extending the Bush tax cuts--yes, for millionaires as well--which would cost hundreds of billions of dollars in red ink. But they're the party of small government, right? Well, the pledge lacks specifics on spending cuts. Defense is off the table. Medicare and Social Security remain untouched. Those are the big-ticket items. Budget-cutters who avoid those areas simply aren't serious.

By Howard Kurtz  | September 23, 2010; 1:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (14)
Categories:  Latest stories, Top story  | Tags:  Pledge to America, Republicans, budget, budget cuts, deficit  
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On Marty Peretz and punditry

I've been criticized a few million times for things I have written and said. That's fair game. Now I'm being slammed for something I didn't write or say. I am, according to Columbia Journalism Review, remaining "silent." (Don't I have that Fifth Amendment right, like you see in the movies?) My sin is that I have not denounced Marty Peretz. More on that in a moment.

By Howard Kurtz  | September 23, 2010; 12:15 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (7)
Categories:  Latest stories  | Tags:  Harvard, Marty Peretz, New Republic  
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GOP rolls out budget plan

By Howard Kurtz  | September 23, 2010; 9:30 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Video  
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One-click Thursday roundup

C-SPAN's blasts from the past When Christine O'Donnell seemingly came out of nowhere to win her party's Senate nomination in Delaware, journalists quickly unearthed a treasure trove of information about her. Their not-so-secret source: the C-SPAN Video Library. The online...

By Howard Kurtz  | September 23, 2010; 6:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
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C-SPAN's blasts from the past

When Christine O'Donnell seemingly came out of nowhere to win her party's Senate nomination in Delaware, journalists quickly unearthed a treasure trove of information about her. Their not-so-secret source: the C-SPAN Video Library. The online archive, available for free, has turned out to be a deep sea in which reporters can fish for embarrassing or revealing tidbits. "C-SPAN has always been the network of record for following political candidates, and now the entire past nearly quarter-century is at your fingertips," says Robert Browning, the archive director.

By Howard Kurtz  | September 23, 2010; 6:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Latest stories, Television, Top story  | Tags:  C-SPAN, Christine O'Donnell, campaign, opposition research  
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Stewart jabs O'Reilly on Fox

Watch the latest video at video.foxnews.com...

By Howard Kurtz  | September 22, 2010; 10:30 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Video  
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Reporter fed up with Yahoo

John Cook is leaving Yahoo. Here's why you should care. Cook is a former Chicago Tribune reporter who specializes in digging up documents. He decamped for Gawker, and had some success marrying his investigative approach to Gawker's gossipy style. After Freddie Mac's acting chief financial officer committed suicide, for instance, Cook obtained evidence that investigators were looking into whether agency officials had concealed or misrepresented information related to the banking bailout. (The probe apparently went nowhere.) In April, as Yahoo was hiring a number of mainstream journalists for its newsy Upshot blog, Cook signed on. But the relationship went sour.

By Howard Kurtz  | September 22, 2010; 10:12 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Blogs, Latest stories  | Tags:  Gawker, Yahoo  
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Woodward scores but loses exclusive

The scoop artist keeps getting scooped. Bob Woodward's carefully choreographed rollout of his new book on the Obama White House was disrupted Tuesday night when the New York Times got hold of a copy and posted a story on its Web site. The Washington Post, where Woodward has worked since his Watergate days, rushed a previously prepared story online at 11:30 p.m. and published it in the Wednesday paper after missing the first edition. "We're in an impossible position," says Steve Luxenberg, an associate editor at The Post who handled "Obama's Wars" for the paper. "We prefer to honor our agreements than to publish something before we're permitted." Woodward's best-selling books always make news, and this one--a behind-the-scenes narrative of internal battling over the war in Afghanistan--is no exception. But just as regularly, Woodward's complicated publicity arrangements get derailed by a leak--which may help the publisher, Simon & Schuster, but leaves The Post a step behind.

By Howard Kurtz  | September 22, 2010; 10:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (13)
Categories:  Latest stories, Top story  | Tags:  60 Minutes, ABC, Bob Woodward, Diane Sawyer, New York Times, Obama's Wars, Washington Post, Woodward scooped, book  
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One-click Wednesday roundup

The Velma moment It was a midday event carried on one basic cable channel, so most Americans didn't see it live. But it contained a moment that seemed to capture the shortcomings of the Obama presidency. Velma Hart called out...

By Howard Kurtz  | September 22, 2010; 10:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
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The Velma moment

It was a midday event carried on one basic cable channel, so most Americans didn't see it live. But it contained a moment that seemed to capture the shortcomings of the Obama presidency. Velma Hart called out the president. And it landed with a smack because Hart is a black woman who supports Obama--but is bitterly disappointed in his performance. Had the president seized that moment at the CNBC town hall -- comforting Hart, passionately defending his efforts to help the middle class -- he could have turned the tide in his favor. He could have owned the moment.

By Howard Kurtz  | September 22, 2010; 10:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (12)
Categories:  Latest stories, Top story  | Tags:  CNBC, Obama, Velma Hart, town hall  
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Stewart finds Obama's Kryptonite

The Daily Show With Jon StewartMon - Thurs 11p / 10cMeet the Depressedwww.thedailyshow.comDaily Show Full EpisodesPolitical HumorTea Party...

By Howard Kurtz  | September 22, 2010; 8:06 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Video  
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Velma Hart plays Hardball

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By Howard Kurtz  | September 21, 2010; 10:16 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
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Huffington snags N.Y. Times star

In the latest sign that Web sites can compete on an equal footing with media giants, a star reporter for the New York Times is defecting to the Huffington Post. Peter Goodman, until recently the paper's national economic correspondent and now a writer for the Sunday business section, has just signed the deal. And his reasoning helps explain why he would leave the high-profile platform of the Times. "For me it's a chance to write with a point of view," Goodman says in an interview. It's sort of the age of the columnist. With the dysfunctional political system, old conventional notions of fairness make it hard to tell readers directly what's going on. This is a chance for me to explore solutions in my economic reporting."

By Howard Kurtz  | September 21, 2010; 6:53 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (16)
Categories:  Latest stories, Top story  | Tags:  Arianna Huffington, Huffington Post, New York Times, Peter Goodman, economy  
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O'Reilly sitting on sound bites

By Howard Kurtz  | September 21, 2010; 4:08 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Video  
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Jon Stewart, Mall rat

I've been listening to Jon Stewart rail against the media for a decade now -- in interviews, at the conventions, in my television studio. But the act never gets old. The journalism racket just keeps producing fresh fodder for him. I learned early on that it was not just shtick. When the "Daily Show" dude appeared on my CNN program, we chatted afterward about how exasperated he was with the media. When I was a guest years later on his Comedy Central show, he got so wound up that he kept on jousting with me well past my allotted six minutes -- after quietly assuring me, "Don't worry, we'll cut this part out." But as the comic descends on the Mall -- along with his wingman Stephen Colbert -- is he abandoning the safety of Post-Ironic Mountain and recasting himself as ... a serious dude?

By Howard Kurtz  | September 21, 2010; 3:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (17)
Categories:  Latest stories, Top story  | Tags:  Comedy Central, Daily Show, Fox, Jon Stewart, Obama, Stephen Colbert  
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Clinton advises Obama on economy

By Howard Kurtz  | September 21, 2010; 9:49 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Video  
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One-click Tuesday roundup

For those of you who've said you prefer one morning column. Wack Job Journalism One candidate, who talked of privatizing Social Security, also declared that pregnant rape victims should make the "lemon situation into lemonade." Another candidate says he has reservations about the 46-year-old Civil Rights Act. Another candidate says unemployment benefits aren't authorized by the Constitution. And the latest tea party favorite, among other things, defaulted on her mortgage, didn't take the college courses she claimed, and is on tape criticizing masturbation and blabbing about dabbling in witchcraft.

By Howard Kurtz  | September 20, 2010; 10:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (8)
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Wack job journalism

One candidate, who talked of privatizing Social Security, says she wants reporters "to ask the questions we want to answer so that they report the news the way we want it to be reported." Another candidate says unemployment benefits aren't authorized by the Constitution. Another candidate says he has reservations about the 46-year-old Civil Rights Act. And the latest tea party favorite, among other things, defaulted on her mortgage, didn't take the college courses she claimed and is on tape criticizing masturbation. Much of the media are portraying the likes of Sharron Angle, Joe Miller, Rand Paul and now Christine O'Donnell as wacky extremists. That may prove to be unduly dismissive.

By Howard Kurtz  | September 20, 2010; 10:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (122)
Categories:  Latest stories, Top story  | Tags:  Christine O'Donnell, Joe Miller, Rand Paul, Sharron Angle, Tea party, media  
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President confronts the pain

It was a mismatch. It's not that President Obama did badly at CNBC's town hall on the economy. To the contrary, he handled himself well. But he was confronted with disillusioned people with pain--and didn't have much to offer them beyond programmatic answers. This isn't a critique of the president's demeanor. He was engaged and engaging. But the agonizing of the emotional audience members left the greater impression.

By Howard Kurtz  | September 20, 2010; 12:46 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (17)
Categories:  Latest stories, Top story  | Tags:  CNBC, Obama, economy, town hall  
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MSNBC finally pays off at 30 Rock

Chief executive Jeff Zucker says MSNBC "didn't have its act together" until recently. But now it provides a competitive advantage--and financial support--for NBC News President Steve Capus.

By Howard Kurtz  | September 19, 2010; 10:00 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (27)
Categories:  Latest stories, Television, Top story  | Tags:  Andrea Mitchell, Ann Curry, Bill O'Reilly, Brian Williams, Fox, Jeff Zucker, MSNBC, NBC, Steve Capus, television  
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Should Obama look to Alaska?

The chattering classes now wonder what Christine O'Donnell is going to say about dabbling in witchcraft. The rest of the country is not worried about witchcraft and doesn't know who O'Donnell is. You might think that O'Donnell capturing the GOP...

By Howard Kurtz  | September 19, 2010; 8:24 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Latest stories  | Tags:  Christine O'Donnell, Obama, Sarah Palin  
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Murkowski defends write-in

By Howard Kurtz  | September 19, 2010; 6:50 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
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Forget my 'dog-catcher' line

By Howard Kurtz  | September 19, 2010; 4:39 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Video  
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Are media taunting O'Donnell?

By Howard Kurtz  | September 19, 2010; 3:57 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
Categories:  Video  
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