Michelle Bernard

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  • Union busting: Right-wing media relentlessly attack worker representation


    Media conservatives have waged a relentless war against labor unions, blaming them for a wide variety of problems and smearing them as "communists" and "thugs," among other attacks. However, experts have credited unions for establishing many of the "most fundamental and valued features of today's society" and "paving the road to the middle class for many millions of working families."

  • False equivalence of the day

    Blog ››› ››› JAMISON FOSER

    Courtesy of the Washington Post's Ruth Marcus:

    Imagine the outcry if the Bush administration had pulled a similar hissy fit with MSNBC. "Opinion journalism masquerading as news," White House communications director Anita Dunn declared of Fox. Certainly Fox tends to report its news with a conservative slant -- but has anyone at the White House clicked over to MSNBC recently? Or is the only problem opinion journalism that doesn't match its opinion?

    Has Marcus "clicked over" to MSNBC lately? Or is she just mindlessly parroting the right-wing talking point that MSNBC and Fox are equivalent?

    If she Marcus did watch MSNBC, she'd see former Republican Congressman Joe Scarborough hosting three agenda-setting hours each morning. She'd see Mika Brzezinski, JoeSco's ostensibly "liberal" sidekick, spouting off about how conservative Sarah Palin fans are the "real Americans."

    She'd see former Nixon and Reagan aide and three-time Republican presidential candidate Pat Buchanan -- the nation's most famous bigot.

    She'd see Chris Matthews, whose has for years displayed open contempt for liberals, overt misogyny, and an archaic belief that minorities are not "regular" people.

    She'd Michelle Bernard take a moment away from sending lie-filled anti-health care reform attack-emails to host an MSNBC special dealing with, among other things, health care.

    She'd see a steady stream of conservative misinformation all day from Andrea Mitchell and Norah O'Donnell and others.

    And then maybe she would remember that MSNBC is the channel that brought us Michael Savage, Ann Coulter, and Don Imus. The channel that fired Phil Donahue despite strong ratings simply because Donahue opposed the Iraq war. The channel that specializes more than any other in apologies for employees' offensive on-air statements.

    Any journalist who says MSNBC is in any way the liberal equivalent to Fox News lacks either judgment or honesty -- and, either way, should not be taken seriously -- about anything.

  • Why is health care liar Michelle Bernard hosting an MSNBC special about health?

    Blog ››› ››› JAMISON FOSER

    According to the Orlando Sentinel, on September 20, "MSNBC political analyst Michelle Bernard" will moderate a two-hour special featuring Bill Cosby and NAACP president Ben Jealous, "focusing on the parenting, education and health issues facing the poor in the United States."

    Michelle Bernard is a frequent MSNBC guest, particularly on Hardball.

    Bernard is also the president and CEO of the conservative Independent Women's Forum, in which capacity she is busy spreading lies about health care.

    Like this one: "More American women are going to die of breast cancer if you and I surrender to President Obama's nationalized healthcare onslaught."

    Here's how FactCheck.org describes the health care lies coming from Bernard's IWF:

    A False Appeal to Women's Fears

    Republican-leaning group claims health care legislation could lead to 300,000 deaths from breast cancer, but uses old statistics, faulty logic and false insinuations.

    A conservative group with Republican ties called the Independent Women's Forum is airing an ad that says "300,000 American women with breast cancer might have died" if our health care were "government run" like England's, citing the American Cancer Society as a source for the figure. In fact, a spokesman for the cancer society's advocacy arm says that figure is "not reliable" and adds: "[I]t's not one that we have ever cited; it's not one that we would ever cite." Furthermore, an epidemiologist with the cancer society told us that the way this figure was calculated was "really faulty."

    There's much more, but the bottom line is clear: Michelle Bernard and the Independent Women's Forum are lying in order to stop health care reform.

    So why is MSNBC turning to Bernard to moderate a two-hour special about, among other things, "health issues"?

    Could it be that MSNBC is in favor of lying in order to stop health care reform?

  • Joe Klein, please aim higher

    Blog ››› ››› JAMISON FOSER

    Time's Joe Klein rips a new fundraising email that begins with the false claim that "More American women are going to die of breast cancer if you and I surrender to President Obama's nationalized healthcare onslaught" and goes on to make a variety of false claims about health care reform.

    Here's Klein:

    Needless to say, there is no plan to nationalize or socialize health care. This letter, therefore, is a disgraceful scam, intended to scare the living hell out of already frightened and militantly uninformed people--Fox News viewers who think the sky is falling because a Muslim-Socialist-furriner is in the White House. I'd like to see the leaders of the Republican Party disown this poisonous swill. But they won't--because the real leaders of the Republican Party (Fox, Rush and Drudge) are spreading it.

    Klein never mentions who the email is from, though. It's signed by Michelle Bernard of the Independent Women's Forum. Bernard is a frequent guest on MSNBC, particularly Chris Matthews' Hardball.

    Joe Klein has expressed a fair amount of outrage in recent weeks about the lies that are being spread about health care. But he seems not to have internalized one very important fact: The problem is not limited to "Fox, Rush and Drudge."

    In this case, MSNBC gives a platform to the author of the "disgraceful scam, intended to scare the lving hell out of already frightened and militantly uninformed people." MSNBC, not Fox. MSNBC, not Rush. MSNBC.

    The other thing Joe Klein would do well to realize is that Fox News doesn't give a damn whether Joe Klein criticizes them. Neither does Rush Limbaugh, or Matt Drudge. But if Joe Klein, longtime fixture of Polite DC Society, were to turn his ire on people like Chris Matthews for giving people like Michelle Bernard a platform, he might actually do some good. Matthews and Andrea Mitchell and Norah O'Donnell and David Shuster might actually care what he has to say. He might actually be able to shame them.

  • Politico contributors, guests on CNN and MSNBC join chorus claiming Clinton will bring "drama" to sec. of state office

    ››› ››› ANDREW WALZER

    Since initial reporting that President-elect Barack Obama was considering naming Sen. Hillary Clinton as secretary of state, many in the media have raised the specter of personal and political "drama" -- which they claim follows Hillary and Bill Clinton wherever they go -- negatively affecting the Obama administration. The Chicago Tribune's Clarence Page acknowledged that the media are hoping for "drama" resulting from a Clinton appointment; Page responded to the question of how Obama is "going to keep the drama at bay" by saying: "Well, do we want that? We're journalists."

  • Media react to sec. of state rumors with suggestions of a rogue Clinton agenda, Clinton as Obama's "enem[y]"


    Discussing reports that President-elect Barack Obama is considering naming Sen. Hillary Clinton secretary of state, several media figures have responded with smears, including speculation that Clinton would pursue her own agenda as secretary of state and not Obama's, references to Clinton as Obama's "enem[y]," and speculation that Obama is considering the nomination because if Clinton remains in the Senate, she poses a threat of challenging him for the Democratic nomination in 2012 and can "mak[e] trouble" for him in the Senate.

  • Bernard: Hillary Clinton "will run a parallel government" if named secretary of state


    On Hardball, MSNBC political analyst Michelle Bernard asserted that if President-elect Barack Obama names Sen. Hillary Clinton secretary of state, "she will run a parallel government. It will be a huge problem." Additionally, Jennifer Donahue, political director of the New Hampshire Institute of Politics, asked: "Will she [Clinton] be, in fact, trying to create only one term for Barack Obama?"