Miscellany

Tucker Carlson to MSNBC? Struggling Cable Channel Attempts to Outfox Fox

Conservative pundit Tucker Carlson, seen currently on CNN and PBS, might find a new home: a prime-time show on MSNBC.

With the departure of host Deborah Norville, MSNBC is reportedly considering Carlson to fill the 9 p.m. timeslot. His show would lead into Scarborough Country, hosted by former Republican Congressmember Joe Scarborough. This pairing, not balanced by any avowedly liberal or progressive hosts, would arguably make MSNBC’s prime-time line-up more right-wing than Fox News Channel.

“The pattern in cable news is to imitate Fox,” said FAIR’s Peter Hart. “But MSNBC is going beyond that— it wants to outfox Fox by surpassing Fox’s partisanship. Viewers deserve diverse opinions from the media, not an uninterrupted stream of right-wing spin.”

Tucker Carlson to MSNBC? Struggling Cable Channel Attempts to Outfox Fox

Miscellany

Precision of base attack worries experts

In April 2003, as the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq was ending, the Pentagon projected in a formal planning effort that the U.S. military occupation of the country would end this month.

Instead, December 2004 brought the deadliest single incident of the war for U.S. forces, with more than 80 casualties suffered yesterday by U.S. troops, civilian contractors and Iraqi soldiers when a U.S. base near the northern Iraqi city of Mosul was blasted at lunchtime

Precision of base attack worries experts

Miscellany

New jail abuse allegations hit US

One of the memorandums released on Monday provided the account of an agent who observed “serious physical abuses” in Iraq.

It was dated 25 June – two months after the extent of abuse at Baghdad’s Abu Ghraib prison was revealed – and was marked “urgent” and sent to FBI Director Robert Mueller.

It described strangulation, beatings and the placing of lit cigarettes into detainees’ ears.

Another document said an executive order signed by President George W Bush had authorised techniques such as “sleep management”, stress positions, use of military dogs and sensory deprivation.

New jail abuse allegations hit US

Miscellany

The big media’s “moral values” myth

Like that tangled mess of Christmas lights still framing the neighbors’ house come late January, the moment is long past due to pull the plug on America’s overplayed and largely phony red-state, blue-state melodrama. There were plenty of tall tales told by the big media in 2004, from the Swift Boat boys to CBS-gate, but the idea that “moral values” — whatever the hell that really means — was the overwhelming reason that voters reelected President Bush, may take the grand prize. (Not least because the right-wing wasted no time in wrapping its long-time agenda in the blaring colors of the “values” hysteria.)

There’s a good chance you haven’t heard about it, but a recent nationwide poll of voters published by Gallup last week — and all but ignored by the big media — showed that “values” actually came in a distant fourth

The big media’s "moral values" myth

Miscellany

Kaiser bucks the HMO trend

“What we pay for in medical care is for doing things — for operating on patients, for prescription drugs … insurers earn more when their patients do more,” says David Cutler, a professor at Harvard University. “But nobody earns more when the patients are healthier.”

But Kaiser says its influence is felt in northern California, where costs are 25 percent less than the New York area.

“We’re able to keep our members healthier; therefore, it costs less to take care of them,” says Dr. Francis J. Crosson, executive director of the Permanente Foundation
Imagine that – preventative medicine costs less overall! Isn’t that what advocates for national health care have been saying all along?

Kaiser bucks the HMO trend

Miscellany

CBS and Fox: a year end tale of two networks

Quick: What major television news organization spent much of 2004 under a cloud, beset by bloggers and angry critics scrutinizing its every report for signs of political partisanship, while a string of embarrassing scandals — including a career-threatening firestorm surrounding its most high-profile anchor — eroded its credibility?

If you said CBS News, well, you’re right.

But if you said Fox News Channel, you’d be right too.

CBS and Fox: a year end tale of two networks