OnMedia: A political analyst or a cheerleader?
We all know where Charlie Sykes stands on the issues. He's a political commentator, not a journalist.
But the WTMJ-AM (620) talker likes to portray the savvy political analyst, looking at elections and talking about chances.
Here, for example, is his July 20 show, where he sizes up Republican chances to beat Democratic State Sen. Jim Holperin and talks about Kim Simac, the Republican challenger in the recall election.
"Kim Simac, who is the strongest candidate against Jim Holperin, won in her primary."
That's all he said, but the key words are "strongest candidate."
Then, the day after last week's final recall elections, in which Holperin easily kept his seat, Sykes offered this:
"The reality is that Kim Simac got just creamed, just killed on the issue of delinquent taxes. The Democrats just whupped up on her. There is a lesson here that you need good candidates to win, no matter how vulnerable the incumbent is.
"I understand that you don't want me to say this. Kim Simac was an incredibly weak candidate. This could have been won. I don't blame her. I blame the Republican Party for doing a really craptacular job in recruiting candidates."
When you're listening to Sykes talk about candidates before the election, he's spinning to avoid backlash from his base. That's why Tea Party activist Simac was the "strongest candidate" during the campaign, although she wasn't any stronger the "incredibly weak candidate" who lost on election day.
It takes until after the election to hear what Sykes really thinks.
The Film Festival schedule starts firming up: The Milwaukee Film Festival will feature a 45th anniversary tribute to Kartemquin Films, the Chicago-based documentary film production company.
The tribute will feature Milwaukee premieres of the Kartemquin's newest films, "The Interrupters," and "A Good Man," among older films from Kartemquin, including 1994's "Hoop Dreams."
Honoring more Milwaukee media veterans: Earlier this week, I wrote about the new members of the Emmys' Silver Circle, now there's word from the Milwaukee Press Club of seven new members of its Milwaukee Media Hall of Fame.
- Packers veteran and radio station owner Willie Davis.
- Former Milwaukee branch manager of UP and Civil War historian Lance Herdegen.
- Long-time TV news anchor Mike Miller.
- E.C. Reynolds, photo journalist for Channel 12
- Former Channel 6 anchor and reporter Joanne Williams.
- The late Vern Biever, photo chronicler of the Green Bay Packers.
- The late Roger Jaynes, long-time Journal sports and auto racing writer.
The induction ceremony is scheduled for Oct. 28.
It's finally gone: As promised, the Federal Communications formally dropped "The Fairness Doctrine" from the books this week, even though it hasn't been enforced since 1987, allowing the rise of Rush Limbaugh and the whole genre of conservative talk radio.
Conservative radio talkers have claimed that there were plans to bring it back. But other than a little bit of talk, there's been no serious effort by Democrats to do that.
Semi-Homemade outtakes: Food Network TV star Sandra Lee (she went to the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, by the way), is known for her fussy style of preparing and presenting food in her "Semi-Homemade Cooking" show.
This outtake video (which has some surprising language and gestures in it) shows a different side of her:
I don't agree with Sykes about much of anything, but I have to disagree with Tim on this one. There is no logical inconsistency in saying a candidate is the strongest one in a primary field and also a weak candidate in a general election; just as a sports team can be the best in a weak division but still be seen as weak in comparison with the leaders of stronger divisions.
While Sykes and Belling agree on most things, Sykes has positioned himself more as the "establishment" guy for the conservative point of view. He does more interviews with Republicans and does have the tendency to be more of a cheerleader. Obviously, Belling is not an objective source of information, but you do get a sense that he does not care as much as Sykes does about the Republican leaders liking him. Therefore, you tend to get better analysis on that show because he'll call it as he sees it where Sykes will pull a punch or two. That said, I'm not sure why this is a news story. We all know where Sykes and Belling are coming from. I mean if Tim wanted to do something as obvious as this he could do an article detailing Steve Jagler coming from the left on all matters.
@jimg: "Obviously, Jagler leans right.." Are you on drugs?
Wow. Tim, you got some serious stones on you, chastising someone for having a political lean in the media. If Sykes was a bleeding heart Liberal, your finger tips would have never graced a keyboard about it. We'd likely have another "I hate Mark Belling" article on our hands.
BREAKING NEWS: Charlie Sykes is a conservative!!!! Stop the presses!!! Ummm...so what? This is news? This is worthy of top-of-the-blog from Mr. Cuprisin?
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