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[VIDEO] Megyn Kelly Dismisses Debate Criticisms: ‘If You Can’t Get Past Me How Are You Gonna Handle Vladimir Putin?’

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 writes: Fox News’ Megyn Kelly opened up for the first time this morning about all the criticism she and Fox have gotten about last week’s Republican debate, talking with MediaBuzz host Howard Kurtz.

And, basically, she took the high road, not necessarily singling out Trump but instead defending her tough questions and saying, “If you can’t get past me, how are you gonna handle Vladimir Putin.”

She explained that the goal was, for every candidate, to “drill down to their most vulnerable areas and then give them a chance to explain them” because these same things will most definitely resurface in the general election.

Kelly anticipated a few boos (which they got), but said of all the criticism, “It’s okay, I’m a big girl. I can take it.” Furthermore, she made it clear she didn’t want her male co-moderators being her white knights in case she came under attack….(read more)

Kurtz noted at the top he conducted his interview with Kelly before Trump’s ridiculous “blood” remark. And in case you needed a reminder of what Trump said of her before that:

Trump

(read more)

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Why College Kids Can’t Take a Joke

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Kyle Smith writes: What’s the deal with young people today? “They just want to use these words: ‘That’s racist,’ ‘That’s sexist,’ ‘That’s prejudice,’” Jerry Seinfeld told ESPN’s Colin Cowherd this week. “They don’t know what the f­—k they’re talking about.”

“I stopped playing colleges, and the reason is because they’re way too conservative.”

— Chris Rock

Comics are afraid to work on college campuses, Seinfeld said. To give an idea of how young people think, he cited a bizarre response his 14-year-old daughter made when his wife noted that the girl might want to go to New York City from the suburbs more often “So you can see boys.” The girl replied that the remark was “sexist,” her father said.

“There is a word…That word is illiberal; there is nothing ‘conservative’ about it.”

— Kyle Smith

The determination of the identity-politics obsessed to shut down speech on campus inspired a couple of hilarious one-liners in the past year. One was from The Onion“College Encourages Lively Exchange of Idea: Students, Faculty Invited to Freely Express Single Viewpoint.” The other, though unintentionally funny, was equally amusing, and came from Chris Rock: “I stopped playing colleges, and the reason is because they’re way too conservative.”

There is a word for the move to ban a screening of 2014’s most popular movie, American Sniper (and replace it with Paddington), to hound a major university into rescinding its honorary degree to Ayaan Hirsi Ali,  to punish someone with a Title IX investigation for the crime of questioning the wisdom of certain Title IX investigations, and designating a “safe space” to which to flee after failing to prevent a speech by Christina Hoff Sommers from taking place. Read the rest of this entry »


Kirsten Powers: The Age Of Un-Enlightenment

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When people are afraid to express their opinions because they’ve seen other people treated as deviants deserving of public shaming or worse, they will be less likely to speak freely

The following is an edited excerpt from Kirsten Powers’ new book, The Silencing.

The illiberal left isn’t just ruining reputations and lives with their campaigns of delegitimization and disparagement. They are harming all of society by silencing important debates, denying people the right to draw their own conclusions, and derailing reporting and research that is important to our understanding of the world. They are robbing culture of the diversity of thought that is so central to learning and discovery.

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“Open-minded inquiry into the problems of the Black family was shut down for decades, precisely the decades in which it was most urgently needed,” Haidt said. “Only in the last few years have sociologists begun to acknowledge that Moynihan was right all along.”

 — Social psychologist Jonathan Haidt

It’s sadly ironic that so many of the illiberal left view themselves as rational, intellectual, fact-based thinkers and yet have fully embraced a dogmatic form of un-enlightenment. Deviating from lefty ideology is equated to heresy and academic inquiry is too often secondary to ideological agendas.

[Jason L. Riley: Will Liberals Ever Forgive Daniel Patrick Moynihan for Being Right?]

The illiberal left insert ideologically driven statistics into the media and academic bloodstream and then accuse anyone who questions them of silencingdiabolical motives. When researchers make discoveries supporting the wrong ideological conclusion, the character assassination and intimidation begin.

[Order Kirsten Powers book The Silencing: How the Left is Killing Free Speech” from Amazon.com]

In a 2011 speech, then-University of Virginia social psychologist Jonathan Haidt, who describes himself politically as a “liberal turned centrist,” explained, “If a group circles around sacred values, they’ll evolve into a tribal-moral community. They’ll embrace science whenever it supports their sacred values, but they’ll ditch it or distort it as soon as it threatens a sacred value.”

“Sacralizing distorts thinking. Sacred values bind teams together, and then blind them to the truth. That’s fine if you are a religious community… but this is not fine for scientists.”

The illiberal left likes to accuse conservatives and religious people of doing this, but ignores the central role it plays in their own determination to reinforce their ideological beliefs. Haidt pointed to Daniel Patrick Moynihan, who was labeled a racist for a 1965 report he produced as assistant secretary of Labor in the Kennedy administration.

[Read more here, at The Daily Caller]

The report rang alarm bells about the rise of unmarried parenthood among African Americans, and called for government policies to address the issue. “Open-minded inquiry into the problems of the Black family was shut down for decades, precisely the decades in which it was most urgently needed,” Haidt said. “Only in the last few years have sociologists begun to acknowledge that Moynihan was right all along. Sacralizing distorts thinking. Sacred values bind teams together, and then blind them to the truth. That’s fine if you are a religious community… but this is not fine for scientists.”

“We are hurting ourselves when we deprive ourselves of critics, of people who are as committed to science as we are, but who ask different questions, and make different background assumptions.”

Haidt believes that the fact that conservatives are underrepresented by “a ratio of two or three hundred to one” in social psychology “is evidence that we are a tribal moral community that actively discourages conservatives from entering.” Allowing for more diversity of ideological thought would lead to “better science and freer thinking,” concluded Haidt. This argument doesn’t just apply to academia. It applies to any facet of society where non-liberal views are deemed out of bounds. Read the rest of this entry »


The Left’s Crusade Against Free Speech

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Peter Berkowitz writes: In October 2009, the Obama White House launched a concerted attack against critical press coverage, one unparalleled since the days of the Nixon White House. In one respect, Barack Obama and Richard Nixon were in agreement: both perceived a distinctly liberal bias in the media. Nixon denounced the press for its leftism, Obama objected to the press’s deviation from it. So Obama and his senior staff singled out for condemnation Fox News, the lone television network that did not serve up the fawning coverage the president and his team had come to expect.

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In “The Silencing: How the Left is Killing Free Speech,” Kirsten Powers recounts that in the space of a few days, White House communications director Anita Dunn, her deputy Dan Pfeiffer, White House Senior Adviser David Axelrod, and White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emmanuel openly asserted that the administration properly excluded Fox reporters from press briefings because Fox was not a legitimate news organization. When asked for comment by NBC News, President Obama stood behind his team.

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Grousing about criticism is only human, and presidential displeasure with the press is nothing new. But wielding the presidential bully pulpit to decree what counts as legitimate news coverage represented an ominous turn in American politics.

“The smearing of opponents of the progressive party line as purveyors of hatred; the denigration of critics of left-liberal public policy as racists, sexists, and homophobes; and the ostracism of advocates of faith, tradition, and the virtues of America’s experiment in self-government as minions of sinister forces—these have become routine features of intellectual life at our leading universities.”

Separation of press and state is as essential to the American constitutional order as separation of church and state. In one respect, religious freedom depends on press freedom: a press that is answerable to, or in the pocket of, the government will be unwilling to report, or incapable of reporting accurately, when government exceeds its lawfully prescribed boundaries.

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What could the president and his advisers have been thinking in orchestrating an assault on Fox News? Where could our president, a graduate of Columbia University and Harvard Law School and a former lecturer at the University of Chicago Law School, silencinghave gotten the idea that it was government’s prerogative to determine who properly reports the news and to supervise the flow of opinion in the country?

[Order Kirsten Powers book The Silencing: How the Left is Killing Free Speech” from Amazon.com]

Sad to say, they could have been thinking they were faithfully implementing the ideas about the need to regulate speech that they had learned in college. The smearing of opponents of the progressive party line as purveyors of hatred; the denigration of critics of left-liberal public policy as racists, sexists, and homophobes; and the ostracism of advocates of faith, tradition, and the virtues of America’s experiment in self-government as minions of sinister forces—these have become routine features of intellectual life at our leading universities. The development of doctrines designed to curtail nonconforming speech was already well under way by the time Obama attended college in the early1980s and law school in the early 1990s. Read the rest of this entry »


Kirsten Powers: ‘If a Christian mob on a ship bound for Italy threw 12 Muslims to their death for praying to Allah, does anyone think the president would have been so disinterested?’

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Western leaders — including Obama — will be remembered for their near silence as this human rights tragedy unfolded

Kirsten Powers writes:

What do you call it when 12 men are drowned at sea for praying to Jesus?

Answer: Religious persecution.

Yet, when a throng of Muslims threw a dozen Christians overboard a migrant ship traveling from Libya to Italy, Prime Minister Matteo Renzi missed the opportunity to label it as such. Standing next to President Obama at their joint news conference Friday, Renzi dismissed it as a one-off event and said,  “The problem is not a problem of (a) clash of religions.”

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“Obama was mute on the killings. He failed to interject any sense of outrage or even tepid concern for the targeting of Christians for their faith.”

While the prime minister plunged his head into the sand, Italian authorities arrested and charged the Muslim migrants with “multiple aggravated murder motivated by religious hate,” according to the BBC.

 “If a Christian mob on a ship bound for Italy threw 12 Muslims to their death for praying to Allah, does anyone think the president would have been so disinterested?”

As Renzi was questioned about the incident, Obama was mute on the killings. He failed to interject any sense of outrage or even tepid concern for the targeting of Christians for their faith. If a Christian mob on a ship bound for Italy powers-bookthrew 12 Muslims to their death for praying to Allah, does anyone think the president would have been so disinterested?

[Order Kirsten Powers’ upcoming book “The Silencing: How the Left is Killing Free Speech” from Amazon.com]

When three North Carolina Muslims were gunned down by a virulent atheist, Obama rightly spoke out against the horrifying killings. But he just can’t seem to find any passion for the mass persecution of Middle Eastern Christians or the eradication of Christianity from its birthplace.

“Pope Francis has repeatedly decried the persecution and begged the world for help, but it has had little impact. Western leaders — including Obama — will be remembered for their near silence as this human rights tragedy unfolded.”

Religious persecution of Christians is rampant worldwide, as Pew has noted, but nowhere is it more prevalent than in the Middle East and Northern Africa, where followers of Jesus are the targets of religious cleansing.  Pope Francis has repeatedly decried the persecution and begged the world for help, but it has had little impact. Read the rest of this entry »


Mollie Z. Hemingway: How to Be a Really Lousy Journalist for Fun and Profit

From Intercollegiate Review, May 2013, a timeless classic. Read the whole thing here. Career advice from my newsroom hero, supreme champion pugilist of punditry, brilliant bombshell of bodacious badassery:

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There has never been a better time to consider a career in journalism.

mollieNewspapers are thriving, magazines are innovating, online journalism listicles are becoming more substantive, and cable-news talking heads are shouting at holograms.

Journalists are living up to our reputation as the country’s most trusted profession (at least compared to IRS agents and American Airlines customer-service representatives). Whether it’s our nuanced and thoughtful analysis of hot-button topics such as gay marriage or our tenacious coverage of the terrorist attack in Benghazi and Dr. Kermit Gosnell’s abortion clinic in Philadelphia, people know you can count on us to get the story right.

Would you like to succeed in this environment? As a long-time reporter and media critic, I’m happy to share tips on what to do if you want to make it in modern journalism.

Don’t Sweat the Details

Is there a difference between an Evangelical and an evangelist? Who cares? Don’t know the technical reason why Christians celebrate Easter? Will anyone really notice? Do you confuse the author of Hebrews with Paris booksellers?We all do! Whether you’re reporting on important U.S. Supreme Court decisions or how many people died in a terrorist bombing, what’s most important is getting the story first, not getting the story right, particularly under the pressure of a 24-hour news cycle.

Don’t Question Authority

If the powers-that-be suggest that a terrorist attack on the eleventh anniversary of 9/11 was the spontaneous and direct result of an unseen YouTube video with junior high school production values, who are you to be skeptical?

If these same authority figures suggest that therefore it’s dangerous for Americans to speak freely, share their religious views, and express their artistic sensibilities however they want, you should probably just join them in calling for restrictions on these First Amendment freedoms.

Likewise, if a politician suggests that the reports of scandal surrounding his administration are overblown, leave him alone already. Would he lie? One good thing to remember is that, generally speaking, only Republican politicians mislead. The sooner you figure that out, the more quickly you’ll be on your way to working at the New York Times.

Recently, some journalists asked the military about reports that the armed services were cracking down on Evangelical Christians. Military spokesmen assured the reporters that there was nothing to worry about. The good reporters figured that meant the case was closed.

Remember Your Job Is to Advance Narratives, Not Report Facts

CNBC’s John Harwood said recently, “Those of us in political-media world should just shut up about ‘narratives’ and focus on what’s true.” Spoken like a real nobody. We’re in the Golden Era of narratives. Facts are for old-timers. Take the story about the Health and Human Service Department’s Obamacare-inspired regulation requiring all employers (regardless of religious objections) to provide employee insurance covering birth control, sterilization, and abortifacients at no cost to the employee. Would you rather report the actual details about this, including claims that it is an unprecedented restriction on religious liberty, or simply call any attempts to fight it part of a “war on women”? Exactly. You know the right thing to do.

Want to write, say, a Biblical Case for Gay Marriage? Push forward, no matter what trouble the Bible gives you in making that case. The narrative is what’s key. Read the rest of this entry »


Kirsten Powers on Iraqi Christian Nightmare: ‘Thanks to ISIS Persecution, Mosul is Without Christians for the First Time in 2,000 Years’

Photo: Ahmad al-Rubaye, AFP/Getty Images)

Iraq’s Christians are begging the world for help. Is anybody listening?

For USA TodayKirsten Powers writes: Since capturing the country’s second largest city of Mosul in early June, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) has ordered Christians to convert to Islam, pay jizyataxes levied on non-Muslims, or die. The extremist Sunni group is also persecuting and murdering Turkmen and Shabaks, both Muslim religious minorities.

 “This is a crime against humanity.”

Human rights lawyer Nina Shea described the horror in Mosul to me: “(ISIS) took the Christians’ houses, took the cars they were driving to leave. They took all their money. One old woman had her life savings of $40,000, and she said, ‘Can I please have 100 dollars?’, and they said no. They took wedding rings off fingers, chopping off fingers if they couldn’t get the ring off.”

“There is nothing to go back to even if ISIS left

“We now have 5,000 destitute, homeless people with no future,” Shea said. “This is a crime against humanity.”

For the first time in 2,000 years, Mosul is devoid of Christians. Read the rest of this entry »


Kirsten Powers: Welcome to the New Dark Age

A public burning of heretics sentenced by the Inquisition is portrayed in this 18th-century print.

A public burning of heretics sentenced by the Inquisition is portrayed in this 18th-century print.

Each week seems to bring another incident. Who will the thought police come for next?

For USAToday, Kirsten Powers writes: Welcome to the Dark Ages, Part II. We have slipped into an age of un-enlightenment where you fall in line behind the mob or face the consequences.

thoughtpoliceHow ironic that the persecutors this time around are the so-called intellectuals. They claim to be liberal while behaving as anything but. The touchstone of liberalism is tolerance of differing ideas. Yet this mob exists to enforce conformity of thought and to delegitimize any dissent from its sanctioned worldview. Intolerance is its calling card.

Each week seems to bring another incident. Last week it was David and Jason Benham, whose pending HGTV show was canceled after the mob unearthed old remarks the brothers made about their Christian beliefs on homosexuality. People can’t have a house-flipping show unless they believe and say the “right” things in their life off the set? In this world, the conservative Tom Selleck never would have been Magnum, P.I.

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This week, a trail-blazing woman was felled in the new tradition of commencement shaming. International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagardewithdrew from delivering the commencement speech at Smith College following protests from students and faculty who hate the IMF. According to the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, this trend is growing. In the 21 years leading up to 2009, there were 21 incidents of an invited guest not speaking because of protests. Yet, in the past five-and-a-half years, there have been 39 cancellations.

Read the rest of this entry »


[VIDEO] The Hammer: ‘Culture of Left Only Satisfied in Destroying People Who Oppose Them’

Charles Krauthammer calls for a counter-boycott of Mozilla

“This is the culture of the left not being satisfied with making an argument, or even prevailing in an argument, but in destroying personally and marginalizing people who oppose them…”

For The Daily CallerBrendan Bordelon reports:  Conservative columnist Charles Krauthammer called for Americans to affect a “counter-boycott” of Mozilla after the company fired their CEO for donating to an anti-gay marriage campaign, calling the move “totalitarian discourse…”

“…This is totalitarian discourse, and it shows a level of intolerance that is absolutely — it should be unacceptable, and people ought to get what they’re giving out and field a counter-boycott.”

Krauthammer spoke on a Fox News panel with USA Today columnist Kirsten Powers and conservative kirsten-powers-smcolumnist George Will, discussing Brendan Eich’s dismissal from popular web browser provider Mozilla after activists discovered he donated $1,000 to California’s Prop 8 campaign — which made gay marriage illegal in the state. Many gay activists boycotted Mozilla, leading to Eich’s eventual termination.

[RELATED: Gay journalist Andrew Sullivan ‘disgusted’ by gay rights ‘fanaticism’ after Mozilla CEO resigns]

george-f-will-114x80Will noted that Eich’s dismissal is “an illustration of a new phenomenon. No one likes sore losers, but now we have sore winners. The gay rights movement is winning — particularly with regard to same-sex marriage — with a speed and breadth that simply takes your breath away . . . Yet unsatisfied with victory, they seem to want to stamp out and punish people for their previous views.” Read the rest of this entry »


Kirsten Powers: Millennial Isn’t Liberal

The generation making their own soda and designing their own shoes is voting Independent.

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For USA Today, Kirsten Powers writes: Bad news for Democrats: It seems Millennials are special little snowflakes after all.

A new report by the centrist Democratic think tank Third Way highlights the political complexity of a generation raised to believe they were utterly unique. When it comes to politics, they do it their way. Which could make the cohort that turned out en masse for President Obama unpredictable as voters.

Third Way focused on how Millennials’ experience as the first generation raised in an information-on-demand culture has shaped them. They are not “adaptors.” They have only known a world full of endless choices, not a life where you make do with what is available.

Third Way reported, “Living in an à la carte world with unlimited options, Millennials don’t feel they have to choose between two limited choices.” For their elders, it was Coke or Pepsi. But Millennials create their perfectly flavored soft drink with a Soda Stream. They design their own shoes on the Internet. They buy just the songs they like.

Read the rest of this entry »


The New Age of Christian Martyrdom

Photo by Hussein Malla/AP

Photo by Hussein Malla/AP

Lions have been replaced by firing squads and concentration camps as record numbers of Jesus’ worshipers are persecuted from Syria to North Korea.

powers-bioKirsten Powers writes:  The concept of Christian martyrdom may seem like something from a bygone, uncivilized era when believers were mercilessly thrown to the lions. Not so. This week, Open Doors, a non-denominational group supporting persecuted Christians worldwide, reported that Christian martyrdom has grown into a pervasive and horrifying human rights crisis.

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In their annual report of the worst 50 countries for Christian persecution, Open Doors found that Christian martyr deaths around the globe doubled in 2013.  Their report documented 2,123 killings, compared with 1,201 in 2012. In Syria alone, there were 1,213 such deaths last year. In addition to losing their lives, Christians around the world continue to suffer discrimination, imprisonment, harassment, sexual assaults, and expulsion from countries merely for practicing their faith.

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Read the rest of this entry »


Kirsten Powers, others shred Susan Rice’s justification for Syria attack

From TWITCHY: National Security Adviser Susan Rice addressed The New America Foundation in Washington, D.C., today, where she attempted to spell out why striking Syria is in the best interests of U.S. national security.

Fox News contributor Kirsten Powers was skeptical of Rice’s pitch from start to finish:

 


Photo of the Week

Reserved Media Seating at Abortion Doc Gosnells Murder Trial

Abortion Doc Murder Trial