July 9, 2006

55KRC in Cincinnati Completes Its Cutover to Fox News

Filed under: Business Moves,MSM Biz/Other Bias — Tom @ 6:00 pm

WKRC Radio’s move finalizes its reaction to Rathergate.

At the time, the station received a torrent of e-mail asking that it sever its relationship with CBS News to deliver news at the top of every hour. Apparently the station wasn’t able to do that contractually, but WKRC did add Fox News at the bottom of every hour within about a month of when the Rathergate story hit. The link also notes that the station refused to carry Rather’s 5 PM broadcast at the top of the hour for some time after the fake documents and other problems underlying the reporting of the George Bush-Texas Air National Guard story were exposed.

About a week ago, probably on July 1 but I can’t exactly when, the station also began carrying Fox News at the top of the hour.

CBS News’ top-of-hour broadcasts have for years been notorious for how they pack so much bias into so little time. It varies by newscaster, but with rare exception someone following the news closely can usually pick up at least a couple of “spins” instead of straight facts, nearly always in the liberal or Democrat direction, in any given broadcast. CBS News has also frequently demonstrated questionable judgment concerning what it does and does not consider the top news items at any given moment.

But now CBS News is gone from 55KRC. Good riddance, and welcome to Fox.

Weekend Question 4: Is Anyone Surprised at These Statistics about China?

Filed under: Taxes & Government,TWUQs — Tom @ 2:03 pm

China’s one-child policy has had a devastating impact on the gender balance:

China now has 119 boys for ever 100 girls, a gender imbalance that is far from the normal 103-100 ratio seen in industrialized nations across the globe. The imbalance has given rise to a culture of massive sex-trafficking and the kidnapping of teenagers and young adults to be forced into marriage.

Though it has started to crack down on the use of ultrasound machines to determine the gender of an unborn child, Chinese lawmakers could not agree on penalties for sex-selection abortions for those who get around the policy.

The country has also become a nation of bachelors as Chinese men have problems finding potential wives and starting families. This has contributed to a rise in crime, prostitution, and other problems.

The latest Chinese census, in April, shows 120 men for every 100 women in the Asian nation, up from 117 per 100 in the 2000 census.

Although the information in the excerpt is vague (is it “boys and girls” or “men and women?), I would suspect that the Chinese census information presented understates the problem, as the ratio for those 40 and older is probably fairly close to 1:1. If so, that means that the male-female imbalance is much greater for those who are eligible to marry. This is just another example of unintended consequences of heavyhanded statist intervention.

And, where is the voice of the National Organization for Women (NOW) on this? Instead of expressing outrage at what is amounting to a systematic defeminization of the world’s largest country, the now.org web site’s home page includes, among other things:

  • A complaint about the state court in New York refusing to recognize homosexual marriage;
  • Its partnering with CodePink to fast for “peace in Iraq” (CodePink is that charming organization which, among other things, conducts protests at military hospitals harassing injured soldiers);
  • Its opposition to sex-specific schools (even though their superior educational results are undeniable);
  • A spirited flogging of the falling-apart Duke lacrosse team rape case on behalf of the woman who brought the allegations.

I would think China’s “40 million missing girls” would at least merit a mention on NOW’s home page. Nope.

More background on China’s sex-balance problem is at this MSNBC link. Yes, it’s biased (“There’s no road map yet on how to achieve the goal of normal sex ratio.” — Huh? Instead of fultilely preventing access to ultrasounds, how about ending the one-child policy?), but it has some good stats.
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UPDATE: Speaking of mistreatment of women, stoning one to death who had been in police custody but who was “somehow” taken from the police station where she was held would certainly qualify. Where’s the human rights and feminist outrage? More updates and facts are at Michelle Malkin’s site.

Weekend Question 3: Why Am I Not Worried about Cincinnati’s Place in the “Cost of Doing Business” Survey?

Filed under: Economy,Taxes & Government,TWUQs — Tom @ 9:59 am

Cincinnati is the second most expensive city to do business in, according to the Kosmont-Rose Institute Cost of Doing Business Survey (press release here). Philadelphia is the most expensive.

Before anyone jumps out of Cincinnati’s Carew Tower or abandons the City of Brotherly Love, it’s worth seeing a bit of the perspective of the survey’s authors on doing business in California contained in the press release. At least some of the criteria for what makes a city a better place to do business in are questionable at best:

Not all the blame rests on the state. Most California cities still grapple with providing affordable housing. The ever-present housing affordability gap threatens the low-skilled labor pool as well as the construction industry, which is adjusting to the slowdown in the housing market. The sky-high prices have left many area businesses struggling to attract employees from lower-cost states.

….. Proposed bond measures and infrastructure improvements offer some hope for cities. Governor Schwarzenegger’s $37 billion “Strategic Growth Plan” offers a blueprint for construction spending, including $4 billion for intercity rail systems. However, the plan does not quite specify how the funds will be used, and some analysts fear the funds could be distributed with little regard to California’s specific needs.

Most troubling, however, is The Anderson Initiative proposed for the November ballot designed to prohibit the taking of any non-government owned property. If approved by voters, this constitutional amendment would effectively eliminate the use of eminent domain as a tool to attract new private investment by outlawing the acquisition of blighted or underperforming properties. Cities would be left with significantly diminished resources to fund public-private deals.

So according to the geniuses who did this survey (with admittedly a bit of reading between the lines):

  • Pumping money into subsidized housing makes a city a better place in which to do business.
  • Wasting money on public transit systems that few will use and which will never make a profit makes a city a better place in which to do business.
  • Protecting property holders’ ownerships rights and preventing arbitrary exercises of eminent domain by tax-hungry politicians and money-hungry developers makes a city a worse place in which to do business.

Phooey.

I’m not in a position to have an opinion about Philly. I can say that Cincinnati as a city is indeed more expensive to do business in than it should be. Its municipal employment level as a percentage of the population is ridiculously high. Its crime rate necessitates a lot more spending on security than would be required in many other cities. Its 2.1% earnings tax, which is assessed on all who work in the city, regardless of whether they live there (can you say “taxation without representation”?) should give the city more money than it should ever need to address its problems; but it’s never enough.

So Cincinnati as a place to do business has definite issues. But in pure dollars and cents, which the survey’s press release didn’t discuss, you won’t convince me that Cincinnati is the second most expensive place to do business. No, way.
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UPDATE: NixGuy has more.

Positivity: Baby Who Beat Cancer in the Womb to Celebrate 5th Birthday

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 7:10 am

Kiah Thomas of Wales will turn 5 shortly, and is living proof that it is NOT unreasonable to hope for a miracle (HT Good News Blog):

….. healthy Kiah Thomas, of Swansea, will celebrate her fifth birthday next week, something experts thought would never happen.

Medical experts at Llanelli’s Prince Philip Hospital feared the worst after finding signs of a tumour during scans on Kiah’s mother Denise Ashford.

Denise, now 26, a care worker, was taken to child health experts in Cardiff for further tests.

At the time, Denise was 14 weeks pregnant with Kiah.

She was given the agonising news that her unborn baby had neuroblastoma, a potentially deadly cancer of the nervous system that accounts for 13% of all child cancer deaths and usually begins as a tumour attached the kidneys and adrenal glands.

Denise and her partner Peter Thomas, 37, were asked if they wanted to consider an abortion given the seriousness of their unborn baby’s condition.

But they refused the option, hoping for a “miracle”.

Over the next few weeks the couple went back and forth to various Welsh hospitals for scans to check the tumour’s growth.

Incredibly, on the fourth scan, Denise and Peter were given the news that the tumour appeared to have reduced in size.

Ms Ashford said, “The doctors told us that sometimes in very small children this type of tumour can shrink over time. But then over the next four weeks, we were given some even more unbelievable news – the tumour had disappeared altogether.”

Kiah was eventually born weighing 6lbs 1oz and was given a clean bill of health after a battery of tests.

Neuroblastoma expert Dr David Latchman said a small number of children with the condition appeared to have “spontaneous remission” where cancer cells revert to normal cells.

But Dr Antonya Cooper, who chairs the Neuroblastoma Society, said it was extremely rare for it to be diagnosed, and to disappear, in the womb.

Around 70 children a year are diagnosed with neuroblastoma which attached itself to the nervous tissue in immature nervous systems.

Most victims are under the age of four.

A spokesman for Cancer Research UK said, “It is one of those things you think cannot happen, but does. It gives hopes to parents of children with this condition and research into children who have survived could eventually help treatment of this condition.”

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