January 22, 2016

Snow Job: AP, Politico Ignore State Citing DC Blizzard As Excuse to Delay Final Hillary Email Release

These people play the press and the courts like a fiddle.

At 2 p.m. Friday — just in time for a slow-news weekend and the onset of what is supposed to be a serious blizzard in the Northeast — the State Department asked a federal court for an extension of time to February 29 to complete its interagency review and release of Hillary Clinton’s private-server emails. But State didn’t merely use the snowstorm as a news visibility cover. In the court filing, it also cited the weekend snowstorm as a reason why it can’t its work done:

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U.S. Press: Nothing Unusual About a Hillary Speaking Less Than 5 Minutes at at Campaign Rally

It would appear that the incurably leftist UK Guardian can be tougher on a Democratic Party presidential candidate than the U.S. establishment press.

The Guardian, the perch from which Edward Snowden exposed the activities of America’s National Security Agency in June 2013, had reporter Adam Gabbatt at GOP presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s Iowa City campaign appearance. The couple of U.S. press reports which noted that Mrs. Clinton spoke for less than five minutes seemed not to think that such a short speech was unusual. Additionally, only Gabbatt did the obviously necessary follow-up to see how the audience felt about getting so little attention from Her Majesty (bolds are mine). They weren’t thrilled:

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AP Underinforms in Reports on Venezuela’s Rule-by-Decree Confrontation

When the Associated Press issues a brief unbylined report on an obviously important matter, one’s first instinct should always be to ask: “What are they deciding not to tell us?” More often than not, the answer is “Plenty.”

An example justifying the need to look further appeared this morning when the wire service published a five-paragraph report on inflation in Venezuela’s economy:

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Only Now Does the NY Times Describe the ‘Scale’ of Hillary’s Speaking Fees As ‘Almost Obscene’

It would appear that the New York Times and MSNBC, in focusing on Hillary Clinton’s speaking fees, are, after many months of serving as virtual Clinton campaign mouthpieces, beginning to hedge their bets in the race for the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination. This information has been available since last spring, but only now is it being seen as geuinely troubling. Why wasn’t seen as a big problem when it was first revealed?

In May of last year, Times reporters Maggie Habermann and Stephen Eder conceded that the speaking fees charged by Mrs. Clinton and her husband Bill, which have averaged roughly $250,000, “could create challenges for the former secretary of state as she tries to cast herself as a champion of everyday Americans in an era of income inequality.” My, how the tone has changed now that Mrs. Clinton’s coronation has become less than seemingly certain.

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Friday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (012216)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 9:30 am

This open thread is meant for commenters to post on items either briefly noted below (if any) or otherwise not covered at this blog. Rules are here.

Positivity: What’s the first step to good communication? Listening, Pope says

Filed under: Positivity — Tom @ 9:25 am

From Vatican City:

Jan 22, 2016 / 05:53 am

For Pope Francis, the ability to listen is the first requirement for good communication, which is something he said should never exclude, but must provide an encounter rooted in mercy and welcome.

“We must first listen. Communicating means sharing, and sharing demands listening and acceptance,” the Pope has said, adding that to listen “is much more than simply hearing.”

Hearing, he said, is about “receiving information, while listening is about communication, and calls for closeness. Listening allows us to get things right, and not simply to be passive onlookers, users or consumers.”

Francis noted that really listening to someone “is never easy,” and that many times “it is easier to play deaf.”

To listen requires “a sort of martyrdom or self-sacrifice,” because it means “paying attention, wanting to understand, to value, to respect and to ponder what the other person says,” he continued.

“Knowing how to listen is an immense grace, it is a gift which we need to ask for and then make every effort to practice.”

Francis’ words were part of his message for the 50th World Day of Social Communications. Announced Sept. 29, 2015, the theme of the message is “Communication and Mercy: A Fruitful Encounter.” …

Go here for the rest of the story.