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Van Gogh: The Life

Van Gogh: The Life

By Steven Naifeh (Author), Gregory White Smith (Author)

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Tag: Media

Rupert Murdoch vs. Google (and Reality)

In an interview with Sky News Australia, the News Corp. tycoon laid out his vision for the future of the news business, which bears little resemblance to the present state of the news business. Murdoch said he would soon begin charging for online content, block Google searches and ... (continued)

Posted on Nov 9, 2009 READ MORE

We Are What We Trade and How We Trade It

The rules governing what we buy and sell are now playing such a decisive role in almost every major policy that we ignore them at our peril.

Posted on Nov 5, 2009 READ MORE

U.S. Marine Corps / Cpl. Artur Shvartsberg

Today’s U.S. Army and Its Ambitions

It is possible that the creation of an all-professional U.S. Army has been Congress’ most dangerous decision.

Posted on Nov 3, 2009 READ MORE

Angel City Press

Inventing L.A.: The Chandlers and Their Times

The Chandler family’s L.A. Times practically invented one of the great American cities. This is the story of the paper’s fall toward mediocrity.

Posted on Nov 3, 2009 READ MORE

AP / David Guttenfelder

McChrystal Doesn’t Get It—Does Obama?

President Obama may have won the Nobel Peace Prize, but if he allows himself to be bullied into supporting Gen. Stanley McChrystal’s foray into Afghanistan, he will reveal himself as the worst kind of warmonger.

Posted on Oct 29, 2009 READ MORE

AP / Dennis Cook

The Party of Choice

By acting on their convictions rather than their fears, the Democrats could ultimately find that the public option can be turned to their advantage for years to come.

Posted on Oct 28, 2009 READ MORE

Flickr / jarrodtrainque

Is CNN the Least Trusted Name in News?

The original cable news network has slipped to fourth and last place with prime-time viewers between ages 25 and 54, trailing Fox News, MSNBC and HLN. The conventional wisdom is that Americans prefer their news with a heavy dose of opinion, but CNN could be losing viewers because, as the “Daily Show” points out (after the jump), they’re just bad at gathering news.

Posted on Oct 26, 2009 READ MORE

Disney Offers Refund for Baby Bupkis

Somehow the Walt Disney Co. managed to convince the parents of one-third of America’s babies to spend $200 million a year on Baby Einstein videos. The tapes were supposed to smarten kids up, but watching TV from ages 1-3 could actually cause attention problems. Under pressure, Disney is now offering refunds. (continued)

Posted on Oct 25, 2009 READ MORE

Where Have All the Ramparts Gone?

Peter Richardson’s new book about the groundbreaking Ramparts magazine says the rag changed America. Truthdig arts and culture editor Kasia Anderson asks the author and former Ramparts Editor Robert Scheer, Truthdig’s editor-in-chief, why the magazine’s impact isn’t better remembered and what will take its place.

Posted on Oct 22, 2009 READ MORE

Where Have All the Ramparts Gone?

Peter Richardson’s new book about the groundbreaking Ramparts Magazine says the rag changed America. Truthdig arts and culture editor Kasia Anderson asks the author and former Ramparts Editor Robert Scheer, Truthdig’s editor-in-chief, why its impact isn’t better remembered, and what will take its place.

Posted on Oct 22, 2009 READ MORE

Balloon Boy

Posted on Oct 20, 2009 READ MORE

Anything to Be on TV

Now we know the answer to one of the vexing questions of the modern age: Evidently, there is nothing at all that some people won’t do to get on television.

Posted on Oct 19, 2009 READ MORE

Flickr / Lord Jim

A Down-and-Out Route for Rush

Rush Limbaugh, are you ready for some football? Um, I guess not.

Posted on Oct 15, 2009 READ MORE

With Al-Qaida Fading, Why Expand the Afghan War?

Given the Western world’s obsession with al-Qaida, it’s remarkable that public discourse makes little mention of the fact that the terror group is going out of business.

Posted on Oct 15, 2009 READ MORE

Flickr / Samory Santos

Looking for a Middle Class

The challenge of our time is to re-create America as a middle-class nation. [This is Marie Cocco’s last column.]

Posted on Oct 15, 2009 READ MORE

White House / Pete Souza

A Nobel for Defeating Cheneyism

Outraged babble and sanctimonious tut-tutting over President Obama’s Nobel Peace Prize will pour forth for years.

Posted on Oct 15, 2009 READ MORE

AP / Pablo Martinez Monsivais

Bribe, Vote, Repeat

The votes of lawmakers are so routinely purchased by corporations that it takes a scandal of unusual proportions to generate news coverage.

Posted on Oct 12, 2009 READ MORE

Glenn Beck Goes to War

Fox News personalities are so sensitive. After White House Communications Director Anita Dunn said that “we don’t need to pretend that this is the way that legitimate news organizations behave,” Glenn Beck grabbed his toys and declared war.

Posted on Oct 12, 2009 READ MORE

Wikimedia Commons / Agência Brasil

‘Viva Berlusconi’? Not So Much

Italy’s colorful prime minister is in a heap of legal trouble now that the country’s high court has stripped him of immunity. Despite facing charges of corruption, bribery, tax evasion and fraud, Silvio Berlusconi stayed in character, saying, “The trials against me are a farce. Viva Italia and Viva Berlusconi!”

Posted on Oct 7, 2009 READ MORE

Flickr / New England Secession

How Fox News Rigs Polls

Nate Silver of FiveThirtyEight explains how the mad polling scientists at Fox News manage to produce results that look so bad for the Democrats. Before asking about health care reform, for example, Fox pollsters ask dozens of questions that “run the gamut [from] slightly leading to full-frontal Republican talking points.”

Posted on Oct 6, 2009 READ MORE

Gen. McChrystal’s Celebrity Weekend

It is not for McChrystal to leak his staff’s strategic plans to The Washington Post, do the celebrity circuit and tell the public in so many words that if he doesn’t have his way the United States can expect defeat and humiliation in Asia.

Posted on Oct 6, 2009 READ MORE

Who’s in Charge: Obama, Congress or the Military?

The Washington Establishment clearly believes elected officials should defer to the military, no matter what that pesky Constitution says.

Posted on Oct 1, 2009 READ MORE

Polanski Brings Out the Worst in Hollywood

Could it be that the conservative culture warriors who portray Hollywood as a cesspool of moral bankruptcy have been right all along? Not really. But in the case of Roman Polanski, the Puritan scolds definitely have a point.

Posted on Oct 1, 2009 READ MORE

Scanning the Horizon of Books and Libraries

A battle is raging over the future of books in the digital age that could grant a practical monopoly on recorded human knowledge to global Internet search giant Google.

Posted on Sep 29, 2009 READ MORE


And Now, a Word About ‘Czar’ Mythology

Certain prominent media figures who shall remain nameless are getting all worked up about President Obama’s “czars” and, having latched onto this term as fodder for a little old-fashioned partisan punditry, are busy freaking out their followers with sinister socialist imagery—but let’s take a good look at the recent history of this term in American politics, shall we?

Posted on Sep 28, 2009 READ MORE

Radio Globo

2 Honduran Media Outlets Silenced

As if the Honduran coup leaders couldn’t get any more nostalgic for the 1980s, they have closed down two domestic media organizations critical of the interim government, a move that shadows pretty much every Latin American coup in the past half-century.

Posted on Sep 28, 2009 READ MORE

AP / Mohammed Ballas

The War on Language

Those who seek to dominate our behavior first seek to dominate our speech. They seek to obscure meaning. The English- and Arabic-speaking worlds are each beset with a similar assault on language.

Posted on Sep 28, 2009 READ MORE

William Safire
White House / Shealah Craighead

William Safire Dead at 79

The conservative New York Times columnist, Nixon speechwriter and college dropout lost a battle with pancreatic cancer Sunday. In his final opinion column for The Times, Safire wrote about mortality and his intention to reinvent himself at 75.

Posted on Sep 27, 2009 READ MORE

Glenn Beck
AP / Mike Mergen

The Truth About Two Racists—Beck and Limbaugh

Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh like to call the president a racist. They should know. The media provocateurs long ago established that they are bigots through and through.

Posted on Sep 24, 2009 READ MORE

Now, Where Was I?

It turns out watching TV while Twittering and surfing the Web may make one focus poorly, remember less and distract easily.

Posted on Sep 24, 2009 READ MORE

AP / Charles Dharapak

Obama TV: How the President Revived Health Care

By monopolizing the airwaves with his calm rationality, President Obama has retaken control of the national health care debate, which was beginning to descend into ideological hysteria.

Posted on Sep 24, 2009 READ MORE

Hollywood in Shanghai
AP / Eugene Hoshiko

China at Odds With WTO Over Media Import Rules

It’s not the first time that objections have been raised over the kinds of values promoted, whether explicitly or implicitly, by media products hailing from the general vicinity of Hollywood, but this time the issue concerns a whole country taking on a major international commercial coalition: China and the World Trade Organization, respectively.

Posted on Sep 22, 2009 READ MORE

Flickr / David Boyle

Newspaper Bailout? Maybe, but Don’t Hold Your Breath

President Obama says the kind of journalism done by newspapers is “absolutely critical to the health of our democracy” and he’s “happy to look at” proposals to save “fact-based reporting.” But don’t expect the newspaper-junkie-in-chief to break out the keys to the bailout vault anytime soon.

Posted on Sep 21, 2009 READ MORE

Flick / MeetTheCrazies

Where Did All These Marchers Come From?

Josh Silver from joined us to discuss the Glenn Beck phenomenon, Obama’s health care plan and our country’s dependence on for-profit media.

Posted on Sep 17, 2009 READ MORE

Flick / MeetTheCrazies

Where Did All These Marchers Come From?

Josh Silver from joins us to discuss the Glenn Beck phenomenon, Obama’s health care plan and our country’s dependence on for-profit media.

Posted on Sep 18, 2009 READ MORE

AP / Charles Dharapak

Stop Begging Obama and Get Mad

The right-wing accusations against Barack Obama are true. He is a socialist, although he practices socialism for corporations.

Posted on Sep 14, 2009 READ MORE

Is Rep. Joe Wilson Winning?

The White House was worried President Obama’s major health care address would get lost in the commemorations of 9/11. They didn’t know about Joe Wilson, the heretofore unknown South Carolina congressman who is now the national poster boy for the disaffected and ill-informed white people hurling tea bags and insults at the president.

Posted on Sep 13, 2009 READ MORE

White House / Pete Souza

A Speech Even Insurance Companies Could Love

President Barack Obama’s health care reform speech to Congress Wednesday night was impassioned, but it also echoed a lot of ideas from insurance company lobbying.

Posted on Sep 10, 2009 READ MORE

A Perfect Storm of Idiocy

How did America surrender its political discourse—not to mention the news cycle—to the most unreasonable and unstable elements of the far right?

Posted on Sep 9, 2009 READ MORE

Full Text of the President’s Speech to Congress

The president’s speech to Congress on Wednesday was not without surprises, including a Ted Kennedy-inspired appeal to the “character of our nation” and a rowdy (and democratically elected) heckler. Here is the full text.

Posted on Sep 9, 2009 READ MORE

The United States of Plutocracy

Since the 1970s, the nation has been in a dizzying downward spin in the effective purchase of public office by corporations.

Posted on Sep 8, 2009 READ MORE

Van Jones and the Boycott of Glenn Beck

The right-wing radio and TV host may have helped oust activist and green jobs adviser Van Jones from the administration, but in doing so he further justified the boycott against his broadcasts.

Posted on Sep 8, 2009 READ MORE

Barack Obama
White House / Pete Souza

Don’t Be Fooled by the Public Option

The fight over the public option has occupied much of the media coverage, but left unsaid is the fact that weeks of behind-the-scenes negotiations have weakened the public option proposal to the point that it is hardly an option at all.

Posted on Sep 3, 2009 READ MORE

Distorting the Voice of the People

There is an overwhelming case that the electronic media went out of their way to cover the screamers and ignored the majority of calm Americans interested in health care reform.

Posted on Sep 3, 2009 READ MORE

Left: Loren Javier / flickr; right:

Disney Grabs Marvel: Can Mickey and Wolverine Get Along?

Oh, what a tangled web Spider-Man weaves. Thanks largely to the multibillion-dollar success of Marvel’s characters on the big screen, Disney is buying the fabled comic book company for $4 billion in cash and stock. The Mouse House says Marvel characters will soon be appearing at its theme parks, but that isn’t the half of it.

Posted on Aug 31, 2009 READ MORE

Flickr / freegazaorg

Gideon Levy: Bad Journalism Is a Gift to Occupation

Haaretz’s Gideon Levy writes that the “cheap and harmful journalism” of the Swedish organ harvesting story has made life more difficult for opponents of the occupation: “The Israeli occupation is ugly enough without the contribution of Nordic fairy tales. ... [A]ny exaggeration in describing the occupation’s cruelty will ultimately damage the struggle against it.”

Posted on Aug 27, 2009 READ MORE

Ted Kennedy in Pictures

There’s a lot missing in this hastily constructed array of Ted Kennedy’s life. His run for the presidency, for instance, and the scandal that never quite left him. We also leave out his many legislative accomplishments to focus on his family and the extraordinary swan song that might have been.

Posted on Aug 25, 2009 READ MORE

Status Quo Is Not an Option

The summer of disinformation seems to have accomplished its goal: to preserve for the private insurance industry an effective monopoly over how much most Americans pay for health care, and on what terms they can buy it.

Posted on Aug 24, 2009 READ MORE

Amy Goodman

Media Meltdown in a Time of Crisis, Part 3

Amy Goodman, Chris Hedges and Robert Scheer discuss the present and future of media with the global economic crisis, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and the health care debate raging on.

Posted on Aug 24, 2009 READ MORE

World Economic Forum

Israel Furious at Organ Harvesting Accusation

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu likened a report in a Swedish tabloid that said Israeli troops harvested organs from dead Palestinians to “medieval libels that Jews killed Christian children for their blood.”

Posted on Aug 24, 2009 READ MORE

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