The "mystery of the United States," writes Tom Frank, is that "wealth is today concentrated in fewer hands than it has been since the 1920s; workers have less power over the conditions under which they toil than ever before in our lifetimes; and the corporation has become the most powerful actor in our world. Yet that rightward shift - still going strong to this day - sells itself as a war against elites, a righteous uprising of the little guy against an obnoxious upper class." Nevertheless, he adds, "There is a grain of truth in the backlash stereotype of liberalism.
Traditional journalists love to criticize the reliability of information found on the Internet, but Paul Carr points out that traditional journalism is feeding some of the Internet's worst offenders: "Thanks to people like Drudge, the internet is turning into a gigantic gossip laundering operation for cowardly print hacks. Heard a juicy rumour about a presidential candidate? Know it's probably total rubbish but want to print it anyway? No problem!
Leftists aren't the only dissenters from the war in Iraq to feel the consequences of the Clear Channel's pro-war tilt. Radio talk show host Charles Goyette, a Goldwater Reaganite, has been bumped from his slot and expects to lose his job because he criticized the Bush administration's shape-shifting case for war. "Management didn't like my being out of step with the president's parade of national hysteria, and the war-fevered spectators didn't care to be told they were suffering illusions," he writes.
GOP pollster Frank Luntz warned in a memo to party leaders: "The environment is probably the single issue on which Republicans in general - and President Bush in particular - are most vulnerable." The administration's recent funding boosts for its Healthy Forests Restoration Act, Pacific salmon recovery programs, the Klamath River Basin (previously targeted by the anti-environmental
The Republican National Committee is complaining about advertisements comparing George W. Bush to Adolf Hitler that were posted briefly on on MoveOn.org's "Bush in 30 Seconds" web site, which invites people to submit their own creative TV spots criticizing the Bush administration's performance. MoveOn has responded that the ads were submissions to their contest and that it is "deliberately and maliciously misleading" to accuse MoveOn of "sponsoring" them.
Bill O'Reilly, who famously falsely claimed to be the winner of two Peabody Awards, has finally won something for real -- top spot on Pandagon.net's list of "the 20 most annoying conservatives of 2003." According to Pandagon webmasters Ezra Klein and Jesse Taylor, O'Reilly "had a hard time getting on this list.
A new annual journalism award has been created in honor of Michael Kelly, who edited publications including The New Republic, National Journal, Atlantic Monthly before he was killed while covering the war in Iraq.
Newt Gingrich, who has been advising the Bush Administration as a member of the Defense Policy Board, has gone public with his worries about the shortcomings of administration policy in Iraq, arguing that the administration has been putting far too much emphasis on a military solution and slighting the political element. "The real key here is not how many enemy do I kill. The real key is how many allies do I grow," he said.