Connect with us

Opinion

Media created Cuomo myth and other commentary

Published

on

Media created Cuomo myth and other commentary

Media watch: Media Created Cuomo Myth

Gov. Cuomo ordered COVID-positive patients into elderly-care facilities and relented only after news of deaths trickled out, fumes The Federalist’s Christopher Bedford. He never took blame for that but instead offered “lie after lie,” plus his usual bullying. And “what did the corporate media do? They got creepy, worshipping him like something ­between a savior and a manipulative boyfriend.” The Post and others “demanded answers,” but “leftist outlets thanked him for his leadership.” Hollywood gave him an Emmy, and daytime shows invited him to pitch his farcical book on pandemic “leadership.” Indeed, the “myth” of Cuomo, “Master of Pandemics,” was the creation of the American ­media — “the very people whose job is to hold politicians accountable,” regardless of party or ideology.ᐧEmmys are for acting. But for “CNN, NBC, ABC, The New York Times, The Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, Reuters, AP and PolitiFact, there is no excuse.”

Conservative: Limbaugh’s Lasting Legacy

At Spectator USA, Daniel McCarthy mourns Rush Limabugh, who will “be loved by the right and hated by the left for years to come.” A “media powerhouse,” he proved “there could be a mass audience for [conservatives’] message” large enough “to support a television network.” He showed how to be “successful in using weapons that the left forged,” including bringing “a rock irreverence to conservative commentary.” “Millions of Americans don’t accept the orthodoxy that the old media and now the new social networks promote,” and if deprived of a platform, “they’ll look for another, no matter how irreverent it might be.” If lefties fear a new Rush will be “even more shocking to their sensibilities,” they need to “encourage more speech, not less.”

White House beat: First Felines

Only “about a dozen cats have padded through the White House, compared with more than 100 dogs,” but the Bidens will “add a rare first ­feline” to the family, reports The Washington Post’s Bonnie Berkowitz. Some cats “had the run of the White House.” Theodore Roosevelt’s cat Tom Quartz “liked to stalk Jack, a family terrier, and jump onto his back” — and did “something similar to Joseph Cannon, the speaker of the House.” The Fords’ Shan was more chill: She liked to “grab an afternoon nap with first lady Betty Ford.” Not so Misty Malarky: As Jimmy Carter appeared at the top of the Grand Staircase for his first state dinner, “the Marine Band began to play, the press waited expectantly” — and Misty strode first down the stairs.

From the left: The Cancel-Celebrities Culture

“Stop treating celebrities like politicians,” demands New York magazine’s Jonathan Chait. Social media are producing “panicky firings,” ­because no “film or show wants to be linked, however tangentially, to ‘racism’ or ‘anti-Semitism,’ either real or imagined.” Gina Carano was axed from Disney’s “The Mandalorian” “over a supposedly anti-Semitic social-media post.” Yet the post wasn’t bigoted, and anyway, we shouldn’t expect an ­actress “to analyze her social-media posts for their historical undertones with the same level of intellectual sophistication” as members of Congress. “A person can have a job vamping on a reality show or dressing up in a silly costume and pretending to chase around Baby Yoda in a spaceship without possessing a fine-tuned antenna for decoding political symbolism.”

Education desk: Illinois’ Useless Standards

At FoxNews.com, Eli Steele recalls a young, illiterate man seeking a job whom he met while gathering footage for a documentary on Illinois’ “Culturally Responsive Teaching and Leading Standards.” Steele marveled at “how far this man’s world was from the new standards” leaders thought would uplift blacks. The disconnect between their “progressive values” and “the realities on the ground could not be starker.” Illinois teachers “failed to uphold the most basic” of education standards for that man, and he isn’t alone: In 2019, only 37 percent of Illinois third-graders showed proficiency in English. When Steele asked the man “how he felt about the education system wanting to encourage students to become activists, he laughed: “Anyone can march, but not everyone can get a job.”

— Compiled by The Post Editorial Board

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Opinion

Democrats’ #MeToo hypocrisy and other commentary

Published

on

By

Democrats' #MeToo hypocrisy and other commentary

Cuomo watch: Democrats’ #MeToo Hypocrisy

Gov. Cuomo should be facing “explicit calls to resign from President Biden on down, if you apply the standard that Democrats set for similar allegations against Republicans,” reason Axios’ Jim VandeHei and Mike Allen. “And it’s not a close call.” During the #MeToo moment, Democrats “led the charge” in purging powerful men in politics, media, fashion and the movies for exploiting and harassing young women. Their silence now “seems more strange — and unacceptable by their own standards — by the hour.” Their only plausible explanation would be to claim Cuomo’s three accusers “are exaggerating or misremembering things.” Yet that’s “precisely what Democrats said was unacceptable in GOP cases.”

Media desk: Nursing-Home-Scandal Deflection

Cuomo is “finally getting his comeuppance,” but it’s odd that the backlash is for a few “icky” comments and not “for killing thousands of nursing-home residents,” notes Spectator USA’s Amber Athey. The media are trying to establish “a pattern of abusive behavior” to distract from the real scandal, which “might force progressives to challenge many of the lockdown policies they have so eagerly embraced since last year.” Alas, “introspection and mea culpas aren’t the left’s strong suit”; they would rather cover up the “far more serious and damaging story” — and it’s obvious which that is: “I don’t much care if Andrew Cuomo is a bit sleazy. I do care that, in his arrogant incompetence, he might have killed my grandmother.”

Education beat: Beyond Student-Debt Relief

There is a better way to deal with student debt than loan forgiveness, argues Beth Akers at National Review. It’s called income-driven repayment, and it ties monthly payments to borrowers’ income, minimizing “moral hazard” and, “in a true progressive manner,” delivering more benefits to people who took on debt to go college but didn’t see the ­return they expected in the form of a high-paying job. Compare that to loan-forgiveness programs that would “encourage students to borrow more than they would have otherwise, attend more expensive schools and make less of an effort to constrain living expenses.” Universities would also hike prices. IDR loans are already available, but they need to be “replaced with a single user-friendly” plan that can be “universally marketed and better understood.”

Foreign desk: Beware Playing Politics With MBS

President Biden seeks an easy human-rights win by tightening the screws on Saudi Arabia’s crown prince, Muhammad bin Salman — but, warns Karen Elliott House at The New York Sun, “playing politics with an ally in such a dangerous part of the world” is risky business. Biden recently released an old intel report linking MBS to the killing of a Saudi journalist, inviting “relentless pressure from Democrats on the left of his party” to squeeze Riyadh. But “the Biden team is exposing its own hypocrisy,” since the president is determined to ­renew talks with the Tehran regime, which has gallons of dissident blood on its hands. Then, too, Team Biden ignores the fact that “MBS has, over the past four years, engineered a breathtaking expansion of individual liberty” by curbing the religious establishment — reforms that a hard-line stance from Washington could undo.

Centrist: Due Process Matters

In today’s “hair-triggered culture of Twitter attacks and ‘canceling’ opponents, due process is treated as hopelessly arcane and inconvenient,” observes Jonathan Turley at The Hill. As Gov. Cuomo is proving, it’s “rarely valued until its loss becomes personal.” When now-Justice Brett Kavanaugh faced sexual-assault allegations, Cuomo “effectively called Kavanaugh a rapist, without any due process.” Still, now that the governor is facing his own allegations, “Cuomo deserves due process,” even after “loudly denying it for others.” Yes, it would be easy to leave the guv “to the mob and call it poetic justice,” but real justice demands that he “receive all of the due process he denied others — not because he deserves it, but because he embodies the costs of ignoring it.”

— Compiled by The Post Editorial Board

Continue Reading

Opinion

‘Fiscally conservative’ war hawks are trying to defraud GOP voters — again

Published

on

By

‘Fiscally conservative’ war hawks are trying to defraud GOP voters — again

With the Republican loss in the 2020 election, there is a great deal of debate on where the party and the wider conservative movement are headed. According to betting markets, the 2024 field is wide open. The odds-on favorite is former President Donald Trump, but even he only has around a 20 percent chance as of this writing. In second place is Nikki Haley.

The former South Carolina governor and UN ambassador is an object of Beltway fascination, as can be seen in a recent feature profile in Politico. But what would a candidate or President Haley stand for? Would her views jibe with those of the working-class voters who propelled her ex-boss’ unlikely journey to the Oval Office?

If her new organization, Stand for America, is any indication, the answer is no. Instead, it looks Haley will offer the old and tired combination that GOP primary voters decisively rejected in 2016: fiscal conservatism married with a hawkish foreign policy. Whether or not this fusion has a chance politically, basic arithmetic shows that what are likely to be the two pillars of the Haley 2024 campaign are in contradiction.

Not long ago, Haley complained about Democrats wanting to bring back earmarks, highlighting a $50 million project for an indoor rainforest in Iowa. But Americans who believe that Washington should live within its means must see through what is a transparent fraud: Haley frets about a $50 million indoor rainforest — while supporting a foreign policy that costs trillions.

Fact is, pork-barrel projects are a drop in the feds’ sea of red ink. In 2019, the US government spent $4.4 trillion. While tens of millions of dollars may seem like a lot of money, projects in that range shouldn’t be the focus of true budget hawks.

Where does most of the budget go? About half to entitlements, which are politically untouchable. The next category, however, is the military, which amounted to 3.4 percent of gross domestic product in 2019. At the height of the War on Terror, the numbers were higher; in 2010, the armed forces consumed 4.5 percent of GDP, and we could easily return to such numbers under the budgets preferred by many Republicans.

To see how meaningless pork-barrel projects are in the grand scheme of things, we should return to the indoor rainforest that so upset Haley. According to the Costs of War Project at Brown University, as of 2019, the post-9/11 wars had a long-term cost to the United States of around $6.4 trillion. About $2 trillion of that was wasted on Afghanistan alone, with the Taliban now controlling more land than it did in the years immediately after the 2001 invasion.

If the price of an indoor rainforest is $50 million, then the Afghan War has cost taxpayers 40,000 times as much. No, that isn’t a typo: For the price of being in Afghanistan, the federal government could have built an indoor rainforest every 80 square miles across the entire continental United States, or, if it preferred, 13 in each US county.

Perhaps that wouldn’t be the best use of government money. But the point is this: It’s undeniable that foreign wars have been a massive drain on the nation’s resources. Trumpian Populists and progressives would like to see the government invest money at home. But even those who think budgetary restraint is important shouldn’t be manipulated by mathematically ignorant arguments made by those who seek power.

War hawks can’t honestly claim the mantle of fiscal conservatism while only attacking relatively minuscule pork-barrel projects. If American dollars are better spent in places like Afghanistan and the South China Sea than at home, fine. But politicians should make that case directly to the American voter, not try to burnish their fiscal reputations by attacking puny projects while leaving untouched far heftier expenditures.

Republican strategists and activists beware: The combination of opposition to indoor rainforests and support for more pointless war isn’t the path to either electoral success or fiscal responsibility.

Richard Hanania is president of the Center for the Study of Partisanship and Ideology and a research fellow at Defense Priorities.

Twitter: @RichardHanania

Continue Reading

Opinion

NY parents desperate for more school choice: Lift the charter cap!

Published

on

By

NY parents desperate for more school choice: Lift the charter cap!

Parents fed up with the city Department of Education’s disastrous performance this last year are desperate for better choices. Better-off families can pay for alternatives such as private and parochial schools. To give low-income New Yorkers the same opportunity, state lawmakers have a clear duty to lift the cap on public charter schools.

In the city, charter-school enrollment was 138,000 across 267 schools in the 2019-2020 school year. Expansion of existing schools will let that grow some, but not enough.

The DOE’s timidity in reopening schools, its open-close-and-repeat approach to those that aren’t shuttered and its utter failure to make remote learning more than a sad joke frustrate parents across the city. A major exodus from public schools is inevitable — unless the state allows for more high-quality, well-managed charters.

As the pandemic raged, Mayor de Blasio and outgoing Chancellor Richard Carranza took no break from their war on charters. Recently, a state judge ordered the DOE to include charters in the same weekly COVID-19 testing program used at regular schools — and the city is appealing the decision.

Some charters, such as Success Academy, were forced to go all-remote because the DOE wouldn’t let them reopen classes in spaces shared with traditional public schools — lest they make those schools look bad. Yet Success and others at least made remote classes work. KIPP Infinity in Harlem recorded 98 percent attendance because every kid received devices and those with connectivity issues got hotspots.

The flexibility enjoyed by charters allows for out-of-the-box thinking not just in responding to challenges like a pandemic, but also in providing a quality public education for mostly low-income, minority student bodies. They’ve proved to be the laboratories of innovation and achievement that then-Gov. George Pataki envisioned when he pushed charter-school legislation through the Legislature over two decades ago.

In that time, a total of 397 charters have been issued statewide, with 325 schools now serving students, plus 26 approved but not yet open. The 2015 law that raised the state charter cap to 460 allowed only a few dozen more for the city — all which have now been used.

There remain about 25 so-called “zombie” charters — ones that were revoked or approved but never opened. Those licenses should be re-assigned, but it still wouldn’t be enough to satisfy the huge demand for charter seats, grades K-12.

Families need new legislation to lift or eliminate the cap. The progressive lawmakers who now dominate the Legislature should ignore the teachers unions, which despise charters, and do right by inner-city kids. It’s a matter of fundamental fairness to give low-income children the same chance to escape bad schools that the wealthy enjoy.  

A million city kids have essentially lost over a year of education. Public charters can lead the way in bringing thousands back up to speed via a quality, rigorous instruction.

Save public education and increase basic equity: Raise the cap!

Continue Reading

Trending