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Night Owl
At the National Memo, Pulitzer Prize-winner David Cay Johnston, who was writing about income inequality long before that became a household term, writes Heritage Tries Its Hand At News, But Forgets The Facts. An excerpt:

The Daily Signal, The Heritage Foundation’s online “news” website, debuted Tuesday, offering up vagaries and unverifiable assertions aplenty, but too few empirical facts and little in the way of attribution. Its first video was a publicist’s dream, a puff piece that no serious news organization would air.

What appears in The Daily Signal matters because it is assured a large audience eager for reinforcement of deeply embedded views, but no real evidence that would challenge or even bring into question the factual basis of those views.

David Cay Johnston
Reader comments on the Signal’s first investigative piece—the only solid piece of fact-based journalism it published Tuesday—showed just how eager Signal readers are to read confirmation of their biases into pieces and to ignore inconvenient facts, especially subtly presented truths that run contrary to the Heritage Foundation’s well-established perspectives.

Heritage opened its doors in 1973 and has since worked to ensure business dominance of American politics and government. It likes to describe itself as the true champion of the poor in America. A realistic appraisal of its policies shows that it favors protecting existing wealth against the creative destruction by which the existing economic structure is constantly under siege from new wealth seekers.

Heritage also turns a blind eye to the many stealth forms of welfare for the already old rich that I detailed in my books Perfectly Legal, Free Lunch, and The Fine Print.
America needs fact-based, insightful and aggressive journalism — both opinion and fact — from every point on the spectrum. But sadly, much of what we get from what mainstream news organizations mislabel  “conservative” is radical rhetoric that far too often has little basis in fact or even reality.

Progressives and liberals in particular should encourage, and read, quality journalism from the right because it will help weed out flabby, half-baked ideas by everyone not in accord with the Koch brothers and Fox News chief Roger Ailes. Without rigorous journalism from the far right, the whole country suffers a paucity of informing debate. [...]

The breathtaking distortions and even lies by some of our best-known opinion journalists who self-identify as conservatives drew my scrutiny in National Memo columns this year, which you can read here, here,here and here. […]

So, let’s take a look first at the Signal’s featured first-day video, an interview with Sharyl Attkisson, a former reporter and anchor for CBS, CNN and PBS.  The headline is hyped, describing an interview with the Signal’s own correspondent as “exclusive.”

The headline also promises a report on “Journalism’s Very Dangerous Trend” but presents zero verifiable evidence of anything dangerous or even of any trend. [...]

Blast from the Past. At Daily Kos on this date in 2008The Republican Base, Abandoned:

The Democrats don't need them. The 27% of dead-enders who think George W. Bush is doing a dandy job just got thrown to the wolves by John McCain in a speech that even Fox News panned.

In a setting that highlighted McCain's discomfort, with a venue that came across like a half-filled high school auditorium, John McCain pretended to the the candidate of change, and pretended that Barack Obama was the status quo

candidate. That incompetence was the problem with the Bush administration. That he, McCain, is the green candidate with a green background. That John McCain will take the country in a new direction, different than where Republicans have gone before. And John McCain knew it all along.

Say what? Does that mean that Republicans will abandon the President because McCain thinks that this administration is incompetent and has led us astray for eight years? Why would Republicans who like Bush abandon both of you?

Tweet of the Day
Amazing. One of the most comprehensive images of the universe ever taken.

On today's Kagro in the Morning show, Greg Dworkin rounded up stories on the POW swap, new Obama job approval & issues numbers, the new EPA regs, more insurers want in on ACA, but new Medicaid signups aren't moving fast enough, political leaning of docs by specialty, Christie being toast, Sandy $ flows again, the blog-to-big-media pipeline of Tapped, and the gun nut civil war. Scott Brown's super-shady corporate "job" is so ludicrous, Armando can't resist making fun of it. Speaking of scams, a conservative publishers' party for the latest impeachment-themed book. And the signing statement issue is back!

High Impact Posts. Top Comments.

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Comment Preferences

  •  1,029,081 registered users on dKos now. (13+ / 0-)

    Here are the 10 newest registered users on dKos.  Hope to see their comments and diaries here soon!  (If they're not spammers.)


    And since our society is obsessed with numbers that end in a lot of zeros as milestones, here's a special shoutout to users:
    #1,028,700: Andrew2603csh6 (spammer)
    #1,028,800: Jacksonville6161dzu3 (spammer)
    #1,028,900: Rosana7568rvy7
    #1,029,000: shakkaz61

    We've added 416 more users in the last 24 hours.  There's definitely been a recent increase in spammers in the last couple weeks.

    And for your Diary Rescue music pleasure, here's Cusco's "Australia" with a Rescue Rangers video.

  •  MSM. National Enquirer. The Truth Pretzel Factory. (5+ / 0-)

    Something happened. It was good. It was bad.'s what may truly have happened.

    Whatever happened, take no facts prisoner.

    Free Will is the only moral law.

    by franklyn on Tue Jun 03, 2014 at 08:33:32 PM PDT

  •  Check out (7+ / 0-)

    "The end of democracy and the defeat of the American Revolution will occur when government falls into the hands of lending institutions and moneyed incorporations." ~ Thomas Jefferson

    by Lefty Coaster on Tue Jun 03, 2014 at 08:40:14 PM PDT

  •  MSNBC: Coordinated right-wing Bergdahl attack (10+ / 0-)

    Chris discussed how the right-wing is attacking Obama and the Bergdahl family with Marc Jacobson, Lawrence Wilkerson, and Michael Tomasky.  Rachel talked with ex-Rep. Patrick Murphy (D-PA).  Ari had on Karen Finney and Steve Clemons.  Ed also had on Lawrence Wilkerson.

    The other news was about how the NRA has now bowed down to Open Carry and apologized to them.  Chris and Ari both covered it.

    You should also watch this piece about the secession movement... in northern California.  Ari discussed this with Willie Brown and Chaitanya Komanduri.

    Chris also played his earlier chat with Morgan Freeman, looked at the latest lies coming out of Ted Cruz's mouth, and had an early update on the primaries going on tonight.

    Rachel looked at what Southern states have been doing to make voting harder after key parts of the Voting Rights Act were killed by the Supreme Court, and had an update from Mississippi with Kasie Hunt.  She also looked at Louisiana's latest attempt to restrict abortion access and also endanger the lives of abortion doctors.

    Ari also looked at the primaries tonight with Kasie Hunt, E.J. Dionne, and Steve Schmidt.  And he shared the story of Mr. G and Jellybean with owners Kim Sturla and Jeff McCracken.

    Ed also looked at the EPA's new regulations with Jane Kleeb.  He looked at tonight's primaries with Brad Woodhouse and Holland Cooke.  He blasted conservative homeschooling expert Marjorie Holsten for claiming Common Core was a "liberal plot" to destroy marriage.  And he looked at the GOP's attempt at rebranding with Michael Hiltzik.

  •  From NASA Earth Observatory (5+ / 0-)

    In the matter of ocean-level rise, consider Venice....

    no apparent evidence of storm-gates on entrances to the inlet......

  •  Anybody besides me watching the MS-SEN results? (6+ / 0-)

    Rooting for Teahadist Chris McDaniel to beat Thad Cochran to the line in the GOP primary.

    At the moment, McDaniel is leading 49.44% to 48.99%, with 94.92% of precincts reporting (and a third candidate taking the remaining 1.57%). I believe Mississippi does runoffs, and my spreadsheet (dusted off from the '08 Obama-Clinton tilt) suggests that that's pretty likely at this point. According to that spreadsheet, McDaniel would need to get more than 60% of the outstanding precincts' votes to top 50% of the overall count.

  •  Last plug for the new ad: (11+ / 0-)

    Direct link to vid here.

    Hopefully, will be starting a new one this week on GOP vs. climate science, but have some "real" work pressing, so might not get done 'til the weekend.

    I live under the bridge to the 21st Century.

    by Crashing Vor on Tue Jun 03, 2014 at 08:55:55 PM PDT

  •  Like the Terrierists who leave groups because they (3+ / 0-)

    weren't crazy enough. Heritage was formed because AEI wasn't crazy enough

    I want 1 less Tiny Coffin, Why Don't You? Support The President's Gun Violence Plan.

    by JML9999 on Tue Jun 03, 2014 at 08:59:37 PM PDT

  •  Is KOS on the decline? (0+ / 0-)

    Why the seemingly drop off in traffic? Is it the Facebook integration? Not getting the facts of seeing less comments but the claim of greater participation?
    Please explain.


    I will never understand why most people who have more can't just leave it at that. Nope Instead most of them make it their mission in life to see to it that the others get less and less.

    by Canadian Green Card Alien on Tue Jun 03, 2014 at 09:00:31 PM PDT

  •  Heritage doing news is like Goebbels crying out (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    for the Götterdämmerung as he kills his family in The Führerbunker

    Warning - some snark may be above‽ (-9.50; -7.03)‽ eState4Column5©2013 "If we appear to seek the unattainable, then let it be known that we do so to avoid the unimaginable." (@eState4Column5)

    by annieli on Tue Jun 03, 2014 at 09:00:55 PM PDT

  •  If you're dumb enough to publish crap from the (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    annieli, JeffW, Aunt Pat, hulibow, 714day

    noxious National Review, then you own it.

    Chicago Sun-Times Apologizes for Insisting Laverne Cox Is Not a Woman:

    Last weekend, the Chicago Sun-Times ran an editorial written by the National Review's Kevin D. Williamson titled "Laverne Cox is Not a Woman," in which he argues that Time's trans cover subject will forever be a man even if she says she's, in fact, a woman. Today, the story reached its inevitable conclusion: the Sun-Times has pulled the story and apologized.

    You can read the full post on the National Review, which runs vile shit daily and thus is under no real pressure to remove this particular piece of retrograde flailing. The Sun-Times, however, at least has the veneer of a respectable journalistic outlet, which makes their subsequent apology even the more laughable.

    “I would like to get rid of the homophobes, sexists, and racists in our audience. I know they're out there and it really bothers me.” ― Kurt Cobain

    by Jeff Y on Tue Jun 03, 2014 at 09:02:06 PM PDT

  •  Gotta love the Heritage fundation. (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JeffW, Aunt Pat, JML9999, Jeff Y, Eric Nelson

    Based on a lie, puffed up with righteous indignation and dedicated to protecting existing wealth.

    Heritage opened its doors in 1973 and has since worked to ensure business dominance of American politics and government. It likes to describe itself as the true champion of the poor in America. A realistic appraisal of its policies shows that it favors protecting existing wealth against the creative destruction by which the existing economic structure is constantly under siege from new wealth seekers.
    When it comes to the tectonic changes coming in renewable energy economics, this is a big problem. Some of these dinosaurs are going to lose out, and those will be the ones who cling to the old ways.

    A true craftsman will meticulously construct the apparatus of his own demise.

    by onionjim on Tue Jun 03, 2014 at 09:07:03 PM PDT

  •  John Oliver on Letterman tonight (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MTmofo, LakeSuperior

    “I would like to get rid of the homophobes, sexists, and racists in our audience. I know they're out there and it really bothers me.” ― Kurt Cobain

    by Jeff Y on Tue Jun 03, 2014 at 09:26:02 PM PDT

  •  The NY Times commits journalism...again (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Jeff Y, 714day

    The G.I. in question is, of course, Bowe Bergdalh:

    Can G.I. Be Tied to 6 Lost Lives? Facts Are Murky
    Pass the word.

    I'm a Vietnam Era vet. I'm also an Erma Bombeck Era vet. When cussing me out and calling me names please indicate which vet you would like to respond to your world changing thoughts.

    by Just Bob on Tue Jun 03, 2014 at 09:27:07 PM PDT

  •  Everyone should read... (5+ / 0-)

    what Jim Wright had to say about the Bergdahl prisoner swap.

    The staggering hypocrisy of this becomes immediately apparent when you realize that the very same folks who would grant an unconditional pardon to the traitorous Edward Snowden, a man who provably and self-admittedly gave aid and comfort to our adversaries during time of war and who continues to do so to this very day, these same people would proclaim Snowden a hero and leave Bergdahl to die unlamented in a Taliban cave – solely because they despise Barack Obama and for no other reason.

    For the last two years, these very same people have been screaming for Obama’s impeachment, because the President ordered the targeted killing of Anwar al-Awlaki, an American who publicly renounced his citizenship, declared his allegiance to our sworn enemies, and who then actively took up arms against the United States and loudly encouraged others to do so as well.  These same people would sacrifice untold numbers of American soldiers to capture a self-declared terrorist and give him a trial because they simply cannot and will not acknowledge that the president did the right thing, but these very same people would condemn Bergdahl and leave him to rot in Afghanistan without so much as an Article 32 hearing, solely to further their blind hatred of Barack Obama.

    For the last eighteen months these very same people have been screaming for Obama’s impeachment. Impeachment? Hell, some of these silly sons of bitches, including sitting members of Congress and members of the military, have marched on the White House demanding the actual overthrow of the United States government and the imprisonment or death of the President, because four Americans died in Benghazi, Libya. They are outraged, outraged beyond logic, beyond prudence, beyond reason, because they believe Obama didn’t do absolutely everything possible up to and including an armed military invasion to save those men.  But these same people, these very same people, would leave an American soldier to die at the hands of the Taliban and they refuse to cheer his safe return, solely because they hate Barack Obama beyond all rational bounds and they will not allow this administration any victory no matter how small – even when they themselves have been condemning Obama for leaving an American serviceman in the hands of our enemies.

    And this is a great rebuttal to the silly "we don't negotiate with terrorists" line.
    We don’t negotiate with terrorists?

    Jesus Haploid Christ, we do business with terrorists on a daily basis and have all the way back to WWII when we contracted with the Mafia to run arms into occupied Sicily.

    We don’t negotiate with terrorists, what a fucking joke.

    Answer me a question, if we can sell arms to terrorists, to our own enemies, then you tell me why we can’t negotiate with those same terrorists for the return of our own people.

    If our people aren’t worth it, if they aren’t worth more than the value we place on arm sales and political maneuvering, then you go right on and tell me what all the shouting is about over Benghazi. Go on, I’ll wait.

    If our people aren’t worth four or five terrorists sitting in a Gitmo prison cell, then you tell me why we’ve spent the last twelve years in two wars, why we traded the lives of six thousand servicemen and why we killed hundreds of thousands Iraqis and Afghans to avenge three thousand Americans. Go on, tell me why it was okay for the previous administration take a hundred enemy lives for every one of ours, but it’s not acceptable for the current administration to trade five terrorists for the life of one American soldier – especially when we gave six American lives as a down payment looking for him after his disappearance.  Why were the Americans who died on 911 any more valuable than Bowe Bergdahl?

    And if Bergdahl is guilty of desertion, then don’t we owe it to those six dead soldiers to bring him home and make him account for his cowardice?


    Ted Cruz, a man who wants to be President of the United States, who wants to be the Commander in Chief, is the very epitome of these intractable sons of bitches. No other American embodies every horrible facet of the moral bankruptcy that is this corrupt selfish philosophy – unless it’s his father, the turd-blossom didn’t fall far from the horse’s ass in the Cruz family.

  •  If you can do more with 2 words (0+ / 0-)

    then others can do with 100, you're on your way to writing.
    Learned that from reading Vonnegut.

    Free Will is the only moral law.

    by franklyn on Tue Jun 03, 2014 at 09:54:44 PM PDT

  •  I wanted Donnelly to win the GOP primary in (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    CA tonight so he could run against Brown for Governor and embarrass the GOP'ers nationwide. But I think the other guy, Kashkari, will win. (Donnelly is a former "Minuteman" and is a tea'er favorite.)

    "The soil under the grass is dreaming of a young forest, and under the pavement the soil is dreaming of grass."--Wendell Berry

    by Wildthumb on Tue Jun 03, 2014 at 10:03:53 PM PDT

  •  Wow the Hubble tweet (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Eric Nelson, 714day

    Neil deGrasse Tyson was right.

    We are not figuratively, but literally stardust.
  •  Won't be a popular idea here (0+ / 0-)

    "Progressives and liberals in particular should encourage, and read, quality journalism from the right"

    Of course, first we have to find some quality journalism from the right. Has anyone seen some? But it is good discipline, good competitive intelligence, and good exercise in understanding your own opinions to read high-quality opposition.

    Anyone considering a dog for personal safety should treat that decision as seriously as they would buying a gun.

    by Dogs are fuzzy on Tue Jun 03, 2014 at 10:25:58 PM PDT

  •  Health of the Great Lakes (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Eric Nelson, riverlover

    From the International Joint Commission....

    IJC Report: Sixteen key physical, chemical, biological indicators recommended for assessing Great Lakes health

    (Windsor, ON) – Sixteen indicators of Great Lakes health, composed of 41 separate measures, are recommended as tools to assess progress toward cleaning up and protecting the lakes under a report released today by the International Joint Commission (IJC).

    The Great Lakes Ecosystem Indicator Project Report is the culmination of work by some of the top Great Lakes scientists and policy makers.  It recommends that the Canadian and United States governments consider using the identified indicators to monitor progress toward achieving ecosystem objectives under the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement between the two nations.

    “This is a vital tool to help us answer the question, ‘Are the Great Lakes getting healthier?’” said Gordon Walker, Acting Chair of the IJC’s Canadian Section. “There are literally hundreds of important measures of water quality that could be considered when answering that question. This report selects the indicators and measures that are the few that tell us the most.”

    The indicators in the report were selected and developed by members of previous IJC Great Lakes Water Quality and Science boards as well as outside experts with input from the public and policy makers.

    The report builds upon the excellent work of the State of the Lakes Ecosystem Conference (SOLEC), an initiative of Environment Canada and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to assess Great Lakes health.

    “Using a core set of indicators focused on Water Quality Agreement objectives puts us in a position to communicate Great Lakes issues more effectively with the public, policy makers and managers,” said Lana Pollack, Chair of the IJC’s U.S. Section.

    “With almost 20 percent of the planet’s fresh surface water residing in the Great Lakes, we have a tremendous stewardship role. These indicators will help us meet that challenge.”

    Refined and focused indicators will help the IJC and others assess progress under the Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement, which commits the two nations to work toward restoring and maintaining the integrity of the waters of the Great Lakes.  The indicators are now recommended to the Canadian and U.S. governments for incorporation into monitoring and reporting systems.  Under the Agreement, the IJC reviews the status of Great Lakes health every three years. The IJC looks forward to hearing back from the governments about the possibility of using this suite of indicators for its assessment report in 2017.  

    The IJC is also identifying human health indicators that focus on drinking water, beach safety, and fish consumption risks; and program effectiveness indicators that assess progress made by management actions such as acres of habitat protected and restoration of full uses for formerly contaminated waters.

    The report sets out the Commission’s next steps for the Assessment of Progress Priority.  In particular, the Commission will consider how to use the ecosystem indicators for reporting on progress, raising awareness and encouraging action – tasks key to the Commission’s responsibilities under the Agreement.  The Commission welcomes any comments that will help to inform these next steps by July 3, 2014 via the Assessment of Indicators webs site,  A final report for the priority, considering any comments, will be issued in 2015.


    Hugh McDiarmid              Windsor               226-280-2781           

    Frank Bevacqua                Washington        202-736-9024           

    Bernard Beckhoff            Ottawa                 613-947-1420           

  •  stories that "tell themselves" in "natural way$" (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    .. would actually be a vast improvement over the hard driven spun-up stories being told.

    Attkisson did express a belief that stories want to “tell themselves” in “natural” ways, whatever that means.

    News does not exist in nature. It does not just happen. News is made by reporters who gather facts, check and crosscheck them, seek out a range of perspectives and present what they learn in the time available as narrative, attributing facts to sources. Reported columns, like this one, combine those facts with expert knowledge gained through years of study and practice.

    "Whatever that means"

    Man, does David Cay Johnston nail it, with one thing I'd like to add about 'whatever that means'; a tangent to Johnston's analysis of the Daily Signals first 'puff piece' attempt at, and journalism itself ...

    That brings us back to Heritage’s new outlet feeding an audience what it wants rather than what it needs to know.
    ..that what people want to hear has also been manipulated to the nth degree.

    That's where a lot of the pseudo conservative propaganda resources has been focused. Convincing people to believe they want what isn't there, and to hate something that isn't happeming

     Then the stories do "tell themselves" in an "[un]natural way" just as the BS purveyors at the white supremacist Heritage foundation or Roger Ailes planned:

    Manufacturing discontent in as many different forms and places as the peoples awareness can take in. Crowding out the realities of, and any space for "conservatism's" true destruction to be noticed. Blinding people with their overload of disinformation.
    Disinformation to enable tax evasion by the 1%ers. I recently heard David Cay Johnston interviewed on this trick.  Outbound Inversion Transactions (pdf)

    David Cay Johnston, “Tax Treaties With Small Nations Turn Into a New
    Shield for Profits,”
    Thx MB
  •  Too bad all those triillions of wurlds in that pic (0+ / 0-)

    arent all  saved and loved by God and stuff like we are. But life's not always fair. Not everyone can be special. Like us.

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