- The Washington Times - Monday, December 30, 2002

Deep thinker
"The editorial boards at the Seattle Post-Intelligencer and The Washington Post must really want a Republican to win Washington state's 2004 Senate race," James Taranto writes in his Best of the Web Today column at www.opinionjournal.com.
"Both newspapers have editorials offering backhanded support to the clueless Sen. Patty Murray, who in an infamous recent speech described Osama bin Laden's popularity as having stemmed from his alleged good works in Arab countries, including the building of we're not kidding 'day care facilities,'" Mr. Taranto observed.
"Both papers acknowledge the foolishness of Murray's statement. The Post, in its headline, calls it 'inept.' And the Post-Intelligencer notes the obvious: that 'most of [bin Ladens] support stems not from any good works but from al Qaeda's murderous attacks on Americans and others.' Yet both papers still strain to credit Murray with offering an important intellectual contribution. 'Murray Has Guts to Stir Needed Debate,' proclaims the Post-Intelligencer's headline. 'There is a deeper point that Sen. Murray, with extraordinary ineptitude, seemed to be trying to make,' adds the Post.
"Murray has refused to apologize for her statements, and these editorials can only embolden her in that defiant stance. Maybe the two papers really believe she's a misunderstood deep thinker, or maybe they're trying to make excuses for someone with whose politics they sympathize. In either case, they're doing her no service, for she remains a big fat target for her opponent in the next election, whoever that turns out to be."
'Objective' liberals
"One of the strongest proofs of the media's liberal bias is that liberal journalists deny its existence," George Neumayr writes at www.americanprowler.org.
"This denial appears most prominently in newspapers crammed with liberal opinion. 'The Media Bias Myth,' read a near-banner headline in the Opinion Section of the Los Angeles Times on December 22," Mr. Neumayr said.
"Neal Gabler, a senior fellow at the Norman Lear Center at the USC Annenberg School for Communication, writes that liberal media bias is a myth, then proceeds to uncork one of his own: that the media are 'downright conservative,' and that the conglomerates which 'own most of the news media are promoting their own interests, and those interests tend to be conservative.'
"A media that is not 100 percent liberal clearly tilts too far to the right for leftists. What Gabler and others are doing is clear enough: to maintain total control over the media, they must exaggerate the conservative representation in it, and hope that by doing so they provoke a backlash that will silence those few conservative voices.
"Of course, it is too indecorous to state this intention nakedly. So the counterattack on conservatives is couched in the language of 'objectivity.' Conservatives aren't 'journalists,' because they don't adhere to the craft's 'rules and standards.' Never mind that there are no rules and standards, save one tell the truth which liberal journalists, trained at establishment journalism schools, have dishonored for decades.
"'Objectivity' just means reporting from a liberal perspective. An increase of conservatives in the media, even a mild increase, is therefore seen by liberals as a diminution of the media's 'objectivity.'"
Evil conservatives
The New York Times continues to treat the Republican Party as if it were a branch of the Ku Klux Klan. Fortunately, the newspaper offers absolution but only if the GOP quits "pandering to angry white males" and embraces the newspaper's brand of liberalism.
"President Bush must waste no time in moving beyond rhetoric to deeds if he means to convince the nation that the Republican Party, after decades of cynical voter exploitation, no longer has room for a 'Southern strategy' steeped in appeals to disgruntled whites," the newspaper said in an editorial yesterday.
"Mr. Bush promised as much in quickly signaling the purge of the Senate majority leader, Trent Lott, for his tribute to the old Dixiecrat politics of racist oppression. Mr. Lott's outrageous gaffe laid bare the antebellum underbelly of much of the GOP's modern campaigning in the South."
Curbing spending
"Many Republicans, in excusing the pork and waste of otherwise conservative members, say the lawmakers hand out our money to their constituents out of electoral necessity. As [Citizens Against Government Waste] pointed out in a report this winter, the 2002 elections disproved that claim," Timothy P. Carney writes at National Review Online (www.nationalreview.com).
"Because 11 of 13 [appropriations] bills never got passed, every part of government besides the military was kept operating only by continuing resolutions. That means that congressmen were not able to insert individual pork items into their bills, and that spending levels stayed at previous-year levels," Mr. Carney said.
"Yet every single appropriator running for re-election won. Even Kentucky's Anne Northup and Iowa's Tom Latham, both vulnerable, did not suffer at all from their inability to deliver taxpayer-purchased presents to their constituents. In fact, the shocking re-election rate (only two GOP incumbents fell to challengers and the same was true for the Democrats) almost suggests the opposite of the conventional wisdom.
"Also, the government seems to be working fine. Nobody is feeling political repercussions from keeping spending at last year's levels. Going into next year, the upper hand is with the savers, who can demand low spending bills with the fallback of flat-rate continuing resolutions."
Unhappy liberals
"Liberal feminist groups are none too happy about some of President George W. Bush's most recent appointments to the federal Food and Drug Administration's Advisory Committee for Reproductive Health Drugs," United Press International reports in its Capital Comment column.
"Calling the new committee members 'a Christmas gift to religious extremists,' Planned Parenthood President Gloria Feldt said, 'President Bush's brand of ideological science will be a nightmare for women's health. If allowed to continue unchecked, they will surely turn back the clock on all reproductive health technologies.'
"One of the new appointees, Dr. W. David Hager of Kentucky, has come under fire from feminist groups because he counsels prayer as one aspect of treatment for women suffering from premenstrual syndrome and because he has been active in the fight against FDA approval of the so-called abortion drug mifepristone.
"Also under fire is Dr. Joseph B. Stanford, who is being criticized for what PPFA says is his refusal to prescribe contraceptives of any sort and Dr. Susan A. Crockett, an at-large board member of the American Association of Pro-Life Obstetricians and Gynecologists."
Hawaii endorsement
Hawaii's largest newspaper endorsed Democrat Ed Case for next week's special election to replace the late Rep. Patsy T. Mink in Congress.
Mr. Case is "in tune with the state's needs, economic as well as social," the Honolulu Advertiser wrote in an editorial yesterday.
Forty-four names will be on the ballot Saturday, including that of Mr. Case, who won a special election last month to fill the remaining five weeks of Mrs. Mink's term.
Mrs. Mink, one of the most liberal members of Congress, died Sept. 28 but was posthumously re-elected to her 2nd District seat representing rural Oahu and neighboring islands.
"While somewhat more moderate than Mink, Case is a true inheritor of her independent tradition," the Advertiser said.
Mr. Case, 50, served in the state House from 1994-2002 and lost the Democratic gubernatorial primary this year by about 2,000 votes, the Associated Press reports. He is a cousin of AOL-Time Warner Chairman Steve Case.

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