Archives: Jon Ham

  • Hurting Bush Better Than Winning a Pulitzer

    RALEIGH — You know the mainstream media’s hatred of George W. Bush is beyond the pale when national reporters, who are essentially egos with ears, thumb their noses at the Pulitzer Prize that has been waiting to be plucked from l’affaire Wilson-Plame.

  • A Gathering Storm for the Media

    RALEIGH — There is a fetid stink in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, and it’s not coming just from the fouled waters flooding New Orleans. It also wafts from the putrid reporting of the disaster by the mainstream media.

  • Mainstream Media Like a ‘Stalin Radio’

    RALEIGH — At breakfast one morning in 1992, while visiting a friend in the ancient Russian city of Kostroma, I asked my host about a black box sitting on a shelf above the kitchen table. “Oh," he said, looking up from his kasha and tea, "that’s our Stalin radio.”…

  • Media Expect Accountability Only of Others

    RALEIGH — The media like to see themselves as society’s accountability police, constantly on the alert to prevent government officials or corporate leaders from getting off the hook. Whatever the issue, the media want answers. They want explanations. They want consequences. The public must understand what went wrong, they say,…

  • Jumping to Hate Crime Conclusions

    RALEIGH — Back in mid-June, when the news was swirling with outrage over allegations of mistreatment of terrorists at Guantanamo, there came a news item that fit perfectly into that template: It was reported that on June 11 a burned Koran was found at the Islamic Center at Virginia Tech…

  • For MSM, There Are No More Gates to Keep

    RALEIGH — What was it that made Illinois Democratic Senator Dick Durbin go to the well of the U.S. Senate on Tuesday evening and beg for forgiveness? Fear was in his eyes along with tears as he professed to love and cherish the very American servicemen that he slandered on…

  • NY Times ‘Trust’ Report a Roadmap to Bias

    RALEIGH — A line from The New York Times’ “Preserving our Readers’ Trust” report made me do a spit-take while drinking my coffee: “Critics, competitors and partisans can too easily caricature who we are and what we do.” This is rich, almost Frank Rich. This worldwide publishing empire, the chief…

  • Papers’ Love of Government Hurts Circulation

    I’ve given a lot of thought to the issue of declining circulation among daily newspapers. I was managing editor of one for a 15-year period that coincided with the downward trend. I swear it wasn’t my fault. In fact, what I learned during that period was that newspapers, enamored as…

  • Media Think the Public is the Problem

    The mainstream media are trying to make sense of the brave new world of the internet and bloggers. Old media types are worrying a lot these days about their waning influence, credibility and market share. They’re searching for a magic bullet that will make things “normal” again, meaning give them…