Monday, April 30, 2012

$1+ billion in Public Monies Funds Increased Global Warming in Oregon?

As reported previously, General Electric has received over $1 billion dollars in federal funds to create the Shepherds Flat wind power project in Oregon. The U.S. Department of Energy is giving GE a $1.06 billion loan plus a cash grant of almost half a billion dollars ($490 million) is in the pipeline. But it turns out that a State University of New York at Albany study shows that areas in Texas with wind farms are warmer (up to 0.72 degrees Celsius per decade) than similar nearby regions without wind farms. From Reuters:
"Researchers at the State University of New York at Albany analysed the satellite data of areas around large wind farms in Texas, where four of the world's largest farms are located, over the period 2003 to 2011.

"The results, published in the journal Nature Climate Change, showed a warming trend of up to 0.72 degrees Celsius per decade in areas over the farms, compared with nearby regions without the farms.

"'We attribute this warming primarily to wind farms,' the study said. The temperature change could be due to the effects of the energy expelled by farms and the movement and turbulence generated by turbine rotors, it said.

"'These changes, if spatially large enough, may have noticeable impacts on local to regional weather and climate,' the authors said."
The 0.72 degree Celsius warming is significant considering that "[s]cientists say the world's average temperature has warmed by about 0.8 degrees Celsius since 1900, and nearly 0.2 degrees per decade since 1979." So, the warming in Texas in areas with wind farms is almost equal in a decade to average global warming in the last four decades. That's a 4x multiplier.

Apparently the culprit is that the air turbulence caused by the wind turbines keeps the surrounding ground area warmer than in areas without wind turbines.
"The Texas study found the temperature around wind farms rose more at night, compared with nearby regions. This was possibly because while the earth usually cools after the sun sets, bringing the air temperature down, the turbulence produced by the farms kept the ground in their area warm."
H/T William Jacobson

16 Heroes Who Died Fighting in the Afghanistan War April 18 to April 26, 2012

April 18 - Capt. Michael C. Braden, 31, of Lock Haven, Pa., died in Bagram, Afghanistan.

April 19 - They died in Helmand province, Afghanistan, when their Black Hawk (UH-60) crashed. Killed were:
- Chief Warrant Officer Nicholas S. Johnson, 27, of San Diego, Calif.
- Chief Warrant Officer Don C. Viray, 25, of Waipahu, Hawaii.
- Sgt. Chris J. Workman, 33, of Boise, Idaho.
- Sgt. Dean R. Shaffer, 23, of Pekin, Ill.

April 22 - Staff Sgt. Joseph H. Fankhauser, 30, of Mason, Texas, died while conducting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan.

They died in Paktia, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked their unit with an improvised explosive device. Killed were:
- 1st Lt. Jonathan P. Walsh, 28, Cobb, Ga.
- Pfc. Michael J. Metcalf, 22, Boynton Beach, Fla.

April 24 - Spc. Manuel J. Vasquez, 22, of West Sacramento, Calif., died in Paktika province, Afghanistan.

April 25 - Spc. Benjamin H. Neal, 21, of Orfordville, Wis., died in Kandahar province, Afghanistan, from injuries sustained when enemy forces attacked his unit with an improvised explosive device.
- Spc. Moises J. Gonzalez, 29, Huntington, Calif., died in Balkh province, Afghanistan, of injuries sustained when his vehicle rolled over.
- Staff Sgt. Andrew T. Brittonmihalo, 25, of Simi Valley, Calif., died in Kandahar province, Afghanistan, of injuries sustained from small arms fire

April 26 - Spc. Jason K. Edens, 22, of Franklin, Tenn., died in Bethesda, Md., of wounds sustained April 15, in Laghman province, Afghanistan, when the enemy attacked his unit with small arms fire.
- Lt. Christopher E. Mosko, 28, of Pittsford, N.Y., died while conducting combat operations in Nawa district, Ghazni province, Afghanistan.

They died in Ghazni province, Afghanistan, from injuries sustained when their vehicle encountered an improvised explosive device. Killed were:
- Staff Sgt. Brandon F. Eggleston, 29, of Candler, N.C.
- Sgt. Dick A. Lee Jr., 31, of Orange Park, Fla.  

NOTE: This month shows a big uptick in U.S. deaths in Afghanistan over the last six months. The total of 31 American military lost is the highest it has been since September 2011, when 37 American military men were killed. Four of the months between September 2011 and April 2012 had casualties of under 20 (November and December 2011, February and March 2012). October 2011 had 28 Americans lost and January 2012 had 26.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

The Rich Get Richer: General Electric Gets $1.5 Billion in Oregon

Robert Bryce and Stephen F. Hayward:
"U.S.-based General Electric has a starring role in one of the most egregious examples of renewable-energy corporate welfare: the Shepherds Flat wind project in Oregon. The majority of the funding for the $1.9 billion, 845-megawatt project is coming from federal taxpayers. Not only is the Energy Department providing GE and its partners — which include Caithness Energy, Google, and Sumitomo — a $1.06 billion loan guarantee, but as soon as GE’s 338 turbines start turning at Shepherds Flat, the Treasury Department will send the project developers a cash grant of $490 million."
Apparently the deal was so egregious that even Obama
"energy-policy czar Carol Browner and economic adviser Larry Summers wrote a memo saying that the project’s backers had 'little skin in the game' while the government would be providing 'a significant subsidy (65+ percent).' The memo goes on to say that, while the project backers would only provide equity equal to about 11 percent of the total cost of the wind project, they would receive an 'estimated return on equity of 30 percent.'”

Formula One: Bruno Senna

Thursday, April 19, 2012

6 Heroes Who Died Fighting in the Afghanistan War April 11 to April 15, 2012

April 11 - Lance Cpl. Ramon T. Kaipat, 22, of Tacoma, Wash., died while conducting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan.
- Spc. Philip C. S. Schiller, 21, of The Colony, Texas, died in Kandahar province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked his unit with small arms fire.

April 12 - Lance Cpl. Abraham Tarwoe, 25, Providence, R.I., died while conducting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan.

April 14 - Sgt. Tanner S. Higgins, 23, of Yantis, Texas, died in Logar province, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when enemy forces attacked his unit with small arms fire.

April 15 - Staff Sgt. David P. Nowaczyk, 32, of Dyer, Ind., died in Kunar province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when his vehicle was attacked with an enemy improvised explosive device.
- Cpl. Aaron M. Faust, 22, Louisville, Ky., died while supporting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Romney Bus Circles Biden Event

Jason Chaffetz call your office. The Romney campaign has more work for you.

Romney bus circles Exeter, NH hall where VP Biden made a campaign speech (photo: Joe McElveen)

Byron York reports that the Romney campaign tactic of "bracketing" or "sending staff, staging events, and making news at the campaign appearances of rival candidates" is alive and well.
"Biden traveled to Exeter, New Hampshire for a speech at the Town Hall denouncing Romney's economic plan and promoting the Buffett Rule. And what did Biden find outside Town Hall? The Romney campaign bus. 'The bus is doing some laps around the venue,' said Romney spokesman Ryan Williams in a call from Exeter. 'We're going to run an aggressive campaign that will highlight the failures of this administration in every city and state that we possibly can.'"
The photo itself, not to mention Romney spokesman Ryan Williams' phrasing "[t]he bus is doing some laps around the venue", makes the Romney campaign look silly. A lone Romney campaign bus circles his opponent's speaking venue Jericho-like. Only the walls didn't fall down.

York thinks the stunt succeeded because its purpose is to "attract press coverage and make sure that accounts that would ordinarily be solely about Biden's event also feature comment from the Romney campaign." And CNN's account of the Biden speech did include comments by Romney backer John Sununu and spokesman Ryan Williams who were present at Biden's speech. However, the quoted comments came from a conference call made before the speech not from comments made while they were present at the speech (or from the campaign bus).

Campaign buses and operatives going to opponents' speeches "'to speak with voters and members of the media.'" What could possibly go wrong with adopting that tactic? Imagine SEIU and Occupy "spokesmen" showing up at Romney events to "speak with voters and members of the media." That will work out well.

Who will overshadow who when it's not just a nearly empty campaign bus doing silly circles when Romney speaks? And what will be the grounds for complaining if occupy tactics are now used against Romney events? Romney started it.

There was hope that the Romney Florida "occupy" or "bracketing" strategy was a one-off. But, apparently this is what passes for smart political strategy nowadays.

Now that the Democrats know this Romney campaign trick, how long will it be before there is media coverage of security people or even police leading high Romney campaign staffers out of events by the ear? Even worse: "scuffles" between Obama supporters and Romney spokesmen?

Bracketing was not a fiasco in Florida only because the Gingrich campaign was run by gentlemen who only pushed back by one on one questioning. Wait until the pushing back is big time.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Thomas Sowell on IQ and Race

From Thomas Sowell's 1995 review of The Bell Curve.
[Herrnstein and Murray] seem to conclude... that... biological inheritance of IQ... among members of the general society may also explain IQ differences between different racial and ethnic groups.... Such a conclusion goes... much beyond what the facts will support....

[T]he greatest black-white differences are not on the questions which presuppose middle-class vocabulary or experiences, but on abstract questions such as spatial perceptual ability.... [Herrnstein and Murray's] conclusion that this "phenomenon seems peculiarly concentrated in comparisons of ethnic groups" is simply wrong. When European immigrant groups in the United States scored below the national average on mental tests, they scored lowest on the abstract parts of those tests. So did white mountaineer children in the United States tested back in the early 1930s. So did canal boat children in Britain, and so did rural British children compared to their urban counterparts, at a time before Britain had any significant non-white population. So did Gaelic-speaking children as compared to English-speaking children in the Hebrides Islands. This is neither a racial nor an ethnic peculiarity. It is a characteristic found among low-scoring groups of European as well as African ancestry.

In short, groups outside the cultural mainstream of contemporary Western society tend to do their worst on abstract questions, whatever their race might be....

Perhaps the strongest evidence against a genetic basis for intergroup differences in IQ is that the average level of mental test performance has changed very significantly for whole populations over time and, moreover, particular ethnic groups within the population have changed their relative positions during a period when there was very little intermarriage to change the genetic makeup of these groups.

While The Bell Curve cites the work of James R. Flynn, who found substantial increases in mental test performances from one generation to the next in a number of countries around the world, the authors seem not to acknowledge the devastating implications of that finding for the genetic theory of intergroup differences, or for their own reiteration of long-standing claims that the higher fertility of low-IQ groups implies a declining national IQ level. This latter claim is indeed logically consistent with the assumption that genetics is a major factor in interracial differences in IQ scores. But ultimately this too is an empirical issue--and empirical evidence has likewise refuted the claim that IQ test performance would decline over time.

Even before Professor Flynn's studies, mental test results from American soldiers tested in World War II showed that their performances on these tests were higher than the performances of American soldiers in World War I by the equivalent of about 12 IQ points. Perhaps the most dramatic changes were those in the mental test performances of Jews in the United States. The results of World War I mental tests conducted among American soldiers born in Russia--the great majority of whom were Jews--showed such low scores as to cause Carl Brigham, creator of the Scholastic Aptitude Test, to declare that these results "disprove the popular belief that the Jew is highly intelligent." Within a decade, however, Jews in the United States were scoring above the national average on mental tests, and the data in The Bell Curve indicate that they are now far above the national average in IQ.

Strangely, Herrnstein and Murray refer to "folklore" that "Jews and other immigrant groups were thought to be below average in intelligence." It was neither folklore nor anything as subjective as thoughts. It was based on hard data, as hard as any data in The Bell Curve. These groups repeatedly tested below average on the mental tests of the World War I era, both in the army and in civilian life. For Jews, it is clear that later tests showed radically different results--during an era when there was very little intermarriage to change the genetic makeup of American Jews.

My own research of twenty years ago showed that the IQs of both Italian-Americans and Polish-Americans also rose substantially over a period of decades. Unfortunately, there are many statistical problems with these particular data, growing out of the conditions under which they were collected. However, while my data could never be used to compare the IQs of Polish and Italian children, whose IQ scores came from different schools, nevertheless the close similarity of their general patterns of IQ scores rising over time seems indicative--especially since it follows the rising patterns found among Jews and among American soldiers in general between the two world wars, as well as rising IQ scores in other countries around the world.

The implications of such rising patterns of mental test performance is devastating to the central hypothesis of those who have long expressed the same fear as Herrnstein and Murray, that the greater fertility of low-IQ groups would lower the national (and international) IQ over time. The logic of their argument seems so clear and compelling that the opposite empirical result should be considered a refutation of the assumptions behind that logic....

A man who scores 100 on an IQ test today is answering more questions correctly than his grandfather with the same IQ answered two-generations ago, then someone else who answers the same number of questions correctly today as this man's grandfather answered two generations ago may have an IQ of 85.

Herrnstein and Murray openly acknowledge such rises in IQ and christen them "the Flynn effect," in honor of Professor Flynn who discovered it. But they seem not to see how crucially it undermines the case for a genetic explanation of interracial IQ differences. They say:
"The national averages have in fact changed by amounts that are comparable to the fifteen or so IQ points separating blacks and whites in America. To put it another way, on the average, whites today differ from whites, say, two generations ago as much as whites today differ from blacks today. Given their size and speed, the shifts in time necessarily have been due more to changes in the environment than to changes in the genes."
While this open presentation of evidence against the genetic basis of interracial IQ differences is admirable, the failure to draw the logical inference seems puzzling. Blacks today are just as racially different from whites of two generations ago as they are from whites today. Yet the data suggest that the number of questions that blacks answer correctly on IQ tests today is very similar to the number answered correctly by past generations of whites. If race A differs from race B in IQ, and two generations of race A differ from each other by the same amount, where is the logic in suggesting that the IQ differences are even partly racial?

Herrnstein and Murray do not address this question, but instead shift to a discussion of public policy:
"Couldn't the mean of blacks move 15 points as well through environmental changes? There seems no reason why not--but also no reason to believe that white and Asian means can be made to stand still while the Flynn effect works its magic."
But the issue is not solely one of either predicting or controlling the future. It is a question of the validity of the conclusion that differences between genetically different groups are due to those genetic differences, whether in whole or in part. When any factor differs as much from Al to A2 as it does from A2 to B2, why should one conclude that this factor is due to the difference between A in general and B in general?...

A remarkable phenomenon commented on in the Moynihan report of thirty years ago goes unnoticed in The Bell Curve--the prevalence of females among blacks who score high on mental tests. Others who have done studies of high-IQ blacks have found several times as many females as males above the 120 IQ level. Since black males and black females have the same genetic inheritance, this substantial disparity must have some other roots, especially since it is not found in studies of high-IQ individuals in the general society, such as the famous Terman studies, which followed high-IQ children into adulthood and later life. If IQ differences of this magnitude can occur with no genetic difference at all, then it is more than mere speculation to say that some unusual environmental effects must be at work among blacks. However, these environmental effects need not be limited to blacks, for other low-IQ groups of European or other ancestries have likewise tended to have females over-represented among their higher scorers, even though the Terman studies of the general population found no such patterns.

One possibility is that females are more resistant to bad environmental conditions, as some other studies suggest. In any event, large sexual disparities in high-IQ individuals where there are no genetic or socioeconomic differences present a challenge to both the Herrnstein-Murray thesis and most of their critics.

Black males and black females are not the only groups to have significant IQ differences without any genetic differences. Identical twins with significantly different birthweights also have IQ differences, with the heavier twin averaging nearly 9 points higher IQ than the lighter one. This effect is not found where the lighter twin weighs at least six and a half pounds, suggesting that deprivation of nutrition must reach some threshold level before it has a permanent effect on the brain during its crucial early development.

Perhaps the most intellectually troubling aspect of The Bell Curve is the authors' uncritical approach to statistical correlations. One of the first things taught in introductory statistics is that correlation is not causation. It is also one of the first things forgotten, and one of the most widely ignored facts in public policy research. The statistical term "multicollinearity," dealing with spurious correlations, appears only once in this massive book.

Multicollinearity refers to the fact that many variables are highly correlated with one another, so that it is very easy to believe that a certain result comes from variable A, when in fact it is due to variable Z, with which A happens to be correlated. In real life, innumerable factors go together. An example I liked to use in class when teaching economics involved a study showing that economists with only a bachelor's degree had higher incomes than economists with a master's degree and that these in turn had higher incomes than economists with Ph.D.'s. The implication that more education in economics leads to lower incomes would lead me to speculate as to how much money it was costing a student just to be enrolled in my course. In this case, when other variables were taken into account, these spurious correlations disappeared. In many other cases, however, variables such as cultural influences cannot even be quantified, much less have their effects tested statistically....
[emphasis added]
Interesting that Pew Research Center's latest survey on book reading shows blacks (16%) to be slightly less likely than whites (17%) to be non-book readers.

Having lived and taught at college level in a society with a much larger black and mixed race population than in the U.S., the thesis that blacks are less intelligent than whites does not match my experience as a college teacher (anecdotal though it is). Actually what I found was that desire to learn is the key to intelligent learning irrespective of supposed IQ, background or training. Which is why people like St. Peter, John Bunyan and William Carey have a richer, brighter legacy than that of 99.9% of the high IQ population of the last 2000 years.

To give him his due, here's a link to a recent interview with Charles Murray on his latest book Coming Apart.

H/T Peter Robinson

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

As Access to Books Gets Easier Percentage of American Adults Reading Books Declines

In 1978 92% of American adults said they had read a book during the previous 12 months. In 2011 that number had declined to 81% of Americans. The 2011 survey includes 16 and 17 years olds, (who in 2011 had a higher reading percentage than all other age groups, e.g. 86% vs. the next highest 82% for 18 to 29 year olds) and the 1978 survey only questioned those 18 years old and up. So the decline in readers from 1978 is a bit more pronounced than the following chart indicates.

Who were the non-readers?
"A fifth of Americans (18%)[*] said they had not read a book in the past year. This group is more likely to be: male than female (23% vs. 14%), Hispanic than white or black (28% vs. 17% and 16%), age 65 or older (27%), lacking a high school diploma (34%), living in households earning less than $30,000 (26%), unemployed (22%), and residents of rural areas 25%. Those who did not read a book last year also tended not to be technology users."
The number of American adults who read 50 or more books a year has also been halved from more than from 1/10th (13%) in 1978 to 1/20th (5%) in 2011. This drop has occurred even though e-book and cell phone readers make carrying and reading books ever easier.

What gives readers joy in reading? Pew found:
26% of those who had read a book in the past 12 months said that what they enjoyed most was learning, gaining knowledge, and discovering information.
15% cited the pleasures of escaping reality, becoming immersed in another world, and the enjoyment they got from using their imaginations.
12% said they liked the entertainment value of reading, the drama of good stories, the suspense of watching a good plot unfold.
12% said they enjoyed relaxing while reading and having quiet time.
6% liked the variety of topics they could access via reading and how they could find books that particularly interested them.
4% said they enjoy finding spiritual enrichment through reading and expanding their worldview.
3% said they like being mentally challenged by books.
2% cited the physical properties of books – their feel and smell – as a primary pleasure.
*I've contacted Pew on the discrepancy between their text number of 18% and their chart number of 19% who have not read a book in the previous 12 months.

Pew Research Center: Romney has worst campaign coverage week since February 20

Pew Research Center tweet:
"From April 2-8, 35% of Mitt Romney's coverage was positive; 33% negative & 32% neutral-his worst week since Feb. 20-26"
Just wait until Mr. Negative Campaign Jr. meets Mr. Negative Campaign Sr. (who not only does political ads but has the media on his side). The pundit, staff and supporter whining should be world class.

Live by the sword, die by the sword. (cf. Matt. 26:52)

20 Heroes Fighting in the Afghanistan War and Djibouti Who Died March 24 to April 9, 2012

March 24 - Capt. Aaron D. Istre, 37, of Vinton, La., died in Kabul, Afghanistan.
- Sgt. Daniel J. Brown, 27, of Jerome, Idaho, died in Kandahar province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked his unit with an improvised explosive device.

March 26 - Sgt. William R. Wilson III, of Getzville, N.Y., died in Paktika province, Afghanistan, of wounds from small arms fire. His death was originally reported by the International Security Assistance Force, which characterized it as the result of gunshot wounds inflicted by an alleged member of the Afghan Local Police.

March 27 - Sgt. Joseph D’Augustine, 29, of Waldwick, N.J., died while conducting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan.

March 28 - The Department of Defense announced the death of an airman who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom (Afghanistan). Capt. Francis D. Imlay, 31, of Vacaville, Calif., died from injuries received in an accident involving an F-15 aircraft near a base in Southwest Asia.

March 29 - Pfc. Johnathon F. Davis, 20, of Griffin, Ga., died in Kandahar province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered from enemy small arms fire
- Spc. David W. Taylor, 20, of Dixon, Ky., died in Kandahar province, Afghanistan.
- Cpl. Michael J. Palacio, 23, of Lake Elsinore, Calif., died while conducting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan.

March 30 - Cpl. Roberto Cazarez, 24, of Harbor City, Calif., died while conducting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan.

March 31 - Spc. James E. Dutton, 25, of Checotah, Okla., died in Logar province, Afghanistan.

April 3 - Staff Sgt. Christopher L. Brown, 26, of Columbus, Ohio, died in Kunar province, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained after he was attacked with an improvised explosive device while on a dismounted patrol.
- Cpl. Christopher D. Bordoni, 21, of Ithaca, N.Y., died of wounds sustained Jan. 18, 2012, while conducting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan.
- Spc. Jeffrey L. White, Jr., 21, of Catawissa, Mo., died in Khost province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when insurgents attacked his unit with an improvised explosive device.
- Staff Sgt. Tyler J. Smith, 24, of Licking, Mo., died in Kandahar province, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when he was attacked with an enemy improvised explosive device.

April 4 - Killed in Faryab province, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained during an enemy attack by a suicide vehicle borne improvised explosive device:
- Capt. Nicholas J. Rozanski, 36, of Dublin, Ohio.
- Sgt. 1st Class Jeffrey J. Rieck, 45, of Columbus, Ohio.
- Sgt. 1st Class Shawn T. Hannon, 44, of Grove City, Ohio.

April 5 - Cpl. Alex Martinez, 21, of Elgin, Ill., died while conducting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan.

April 6 - Spc. Antonio C. Burnside, 31, of Great Falls, Mont., died at Ghanzi province, Afghanistan of injuries suffered when insurgents attacked his unit with small arms fire.

April 7 - The Department of Defense announced the death of a sailor who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom (Afghanistan) Horn of Africa. Constructionman Trevor J. Stanley, 22, of Virginia Beach, Va., died while deployed to Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti.

Sunday, April 08, 2012

He is risen indeed!

Thistle overlooking Ephesus
Now on the first day of the week Mary Magdalene came early to the tomb, while it was still dark, and saw the stone already taken away from the tomb. So she ran and came to Simon Peter and to the other disciple whom Jesus loved, and said to them, “They have taken away the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid Him.” So Peter and the other disciple went forth, and they were going to the tomb. The two were running together; and the other disciple ran ahead faster than Peter and came to the tomb first; and stooping and looking in, he saw the linen wrappings lying there; but he did not go in. And so Simon Peter also came, following him, and entered the tomb; and he saw the linen wrappings lying there, and the face-cloth which had been on His head, not lying with the linen wrappings, but rolled up in a place by itself. So the other disciple who had first come to the tomb then also entered, and he saw and believed. For as yet they did not understand the Scripture, that He must rise again from the dead. So the disciples went away again to their own homes.

But Mary was standing outside the tomb weeping; and so, as she wept, she stooped and looked into the tomb; and she saw two angels in white sitting, one at the head and one at the feet, where the body of Jesus had been lying. And they said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping?” She said to them, “Because they have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid Him.” When she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, and did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?” Supposing Him to be the gardener, she said to Him, “Sir, if you have carried Him away, tell me where you have laid Him, and I will take Him away.” Jesus said to her, “Mary!” She turned and said to Him in Hebrew, “Rabboni!” (which means, Teacher). Jesus said to her, “Stop clinging to Me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father; but go to My brethren and say to them, ‘I ascend to My Father and your Father, and My God and your God.’” Mary Magdalene came, announcing to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord,” and that He had said these things to her.

John 20:1-18

Monday, April 02, 2012

PEW: Coverage of Santorum Turns Negative and Sparse

PEW Research Center stats for March 26 to April 1, 2012 media coverage:
"While Mitt Romney's campaign narrative remained positive last week, Rick Santorum endured by far his worst stretch of coverage this year--suggesting the media may be moving closer to discounting him as a possible nominee."
. . .
"From March 26-April 1, the former Massachusetts governor generated almost three times as much coverage as his closest competitor (Newt Gingrich). And for the second week in a row, his positive coverage exceeded negative by a margin of 41% to 29%, with 30% neutral, according to the Campaign 2012 in the Media, a weekly tracking of the tone and volume of coverage of the candidates by the Pew Research Center's Project for Excellence in Journalism.

"If Romney's endorsements, as well as a growing sense that he will win the April 3 Wisconsin primary, helped fuel his positive coverage, they also contributed to negative assessments about Santorum--who saw a dramatic downturn in his coverage. For the week, 50% of Santorum's coverage was negative compared with 18% positive and 32% neutral. That comes one week after his positive coverage outweighed his negative by 17 percentage points--a 49-point turnaround."
. . .
"Perhaps as tellingly, the amount of attention the media paid to Santorum plunged last week. He was a significant figure in 21% of the week's campaign stories, down from 50% the week before and representing his lowest level of coverage in nine weeks. That compared to 63% for Romney last week."

"The former Pennsylvania senator received less coverage than Newt Gingrich last week."
[emphasis added]
The Media thought Gingrich (no chance to win in the big story of the week--the Wisconsin primary tomorrow--and with about half the delegates as Santorum and a quarter of the delegates as Romney) more newsworthy than Santorum. This is the Media trusted for serious news coverage.

What do you bet that fourth place finisher Pres. Obama will zoom to Gov. Romney's numbers and Romney will drop to Santorum's numbers as soon as Romney gets the number of necessary delegates? For Media non-favorites coverage is nasty, brutish and short unless they do a Reagan and win anyway.