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August 4, 2005
Air America: IBD Wonders Where The Exempt Media Went

Investors Business Daily publishes an editorial about the Air America funding scandal that took almost a million dollars from a Bronx non-profit. IBD asks, as we have, why the Exempt Media has gone AWOL:

New York City's Department of Investigation is looking into charges that $875,000 from a Bronx nonprofit group and an affiliate whose budgets are generously stuffed with local, state and federal grants was inappropriately used to fund Air America, the left's counterattack on the colossal success of conservative talk radio.

The two groups the Gloria Wise Boys & Girls Club and Pathways for Youth said they thought they were making a loan to the network. But when Evan Montvel Cohen was working as both chairman of Air America and director of development for Gloria Wise, some red flags should have been raised.

Jeannette Graves, president of Gloria Wise's executive committee, has said that without her authorization or knowledge, Cohen siphoned $613,000 from the organization to himself and Air America. Cohen also allegedly used money from the groups for personal medical care.

While this mess is being sorted out, the city has suspended its ties with Gloria Wise and Pathways. That means money intended for poor minority children and Alzheimer's victims was instead used to make sure the financially tanking and ratings-troubled Air America could keep blathering.

Public funds used to prop up a business! Just the kind of scandal that left-leaning media would die for. Yet for some reason they're giving this one a pass.

Is it because there are no mean ol' conservatives to blame?

Of course not! The Exempt Media doesn't have any biases, even though IBD noticed as I did in my Daily Standard column yesterday that they couldn't run enough stories on Rush Limbaugh's addiction to painkillers. When he tried to keep his court and medical records sealed during the investigation, the Exempt Media went to court to get them released and provided daily, breathless updates on the status of the legal action.

That was just one radio show host with a personal addiction and potential criminal activity in acquiring the drugs. At Air America, we have a whole radio network that got their hands on government grants intended for poor children and Alzheimers patients, illicitly using it to keep themselves on the air, and now find themselves the target of a city criminal investigation. Yet none of the same media outlets can find space or time to even report on the existence of the investigation.

Nope, no bias here. Just move along, folks. Look -- Karl Rove! Over there!

During Limbaugh's troubles, IBD points out that Al Franken wasted no time using his legal problems to repeatedly denigrate him on Air America's broadcasts. However, I don't want to blame Franken for the Exempt Media silence -- and I say that with no sarcasm intended. After all, Franken spoke to the New York Sun's reporter when he could have just refused point-blank to discuss the issue, and his interview moved the story forward significantly. In fact, one can truly say that Franken has done more to report on the Air America scandal than the New York Times.

Is that a status that Bill Keller finds acceptable? Does the Washington Post and the Los Angeles Times and the broadcast networks really want that to remain the case? So far, it seems that they do. (via Power Line)

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Posted by Ed Morrissey at August 4, 2005 6:48 AM

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» No Blood Here from The Waterglass
From Captain Ed, we are pointed to an article in Investor's Business Daily about the lack of big media coverage of Air America's "financial irregularities:" The mainstream media, fixated on bringing down Karl Rove, have so far deemed apparent funding... [Read More]

Tracked on August 4, 2005 7:37 AM

» Air America Media Blackout from Politics Blog
|| It would appear that Air America would be out of business today were it not for this incredibly timely six-figure “loan” of taxpayer funds from a city- and federally-funded charity. Investors Business Daily publishes an ed... [Read More]

Tracked on August 4, 2005 12:11 PM

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