Philly TV News: Lots of Campaign Ads, But No Coverage

The Sunlight Foundation recently watched a half-hour of the CBS 3 local news and found a wide disparity between the number of political commercials and the amount of time covering local political news. Specifically, during that half hour of Eyewitness News, there were 11 political commercials — and zero political stories.

“Instead of an all-news channel for news junkies, a channel for ad junkies!” Penn’s Kathleen Hall Jameson told the Foundation.

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Can Conservatives and Liberals Be Friends?

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Photo | Shutterstock.com

For nearly seven years now, Ben Boychuk and I have jousted weekly on the pages of many newspapers across the country. We co-write a syndicated political column — I’m the liberal, he’s the conservative, and every week we debate the issue du jour. Ben hates Obamacare, isn’t a fan of gay marriage, has very little nice to say about teachers’ unions, thinks rich people spending money like crazy to influence elections is a great expression of First Amendment values. I think he’s wrong about nearly everything, he thinks the same thing about me, and sometimes the never-ending disagreement can be pretty damned irritating.

Ben is also one of my best friends in the world. I think he’d say the same about me.

It’s not supposed to work that way. We live in terribly polarized times. Liberals and conservatives watch different TV, live in different places, and mostly think the worst of each other.

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Pennsylvania Curbs Investment in Iran

The Pennsylvania Legislature is making foreign policy now, apparently.

Gov. Tom Corbett this week signed a bill that makes companies choose: Do they want Iran’s business? Or the Keystone State’s? Because you can’t have both.
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Daughter of State Senate Candidate John Kane Calls Him a Liar

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The State Senate battle between Democrat John Kane and Republican Tom McGarrigle for the 26th District seat in Delaware and Chester counties is one of the most hotly contested and most negative races in the entire state, with Kane, the head of Plumbers Union Local 690 since 2007, and McGarrigle, a Springfield businessman, both pumping cash into television ads. You’ve probably seen Kane’s “Homework” ad. It’s one of those campaign advertisements that shows off a politician’s pretty family — in this case, Kane’s wife and their four children — and has them raving about what a great dad he is. But one person who saw that ad wasn’t very impressed: Kane’s 32-year-old daughter from a previous relationship. Read more »

Daryl Metcalfe’s Bad Religion

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Let’s give this to Daryl Metcalfe: If you wanted to create a religious-right bogeyman that almost perfectly fit the fevered nightmares of liberals, he’d pretty closely fit the bill.

Metcalfe is the Pennsylvania Republican probably best known for silencing openly gay Rep. Brian Sims on the House floor last year because Sims’ comments in favor of gay marriage would’ve been “against God’s law.”

“I’m a Christian,” Metcalfe said at the time. “Based on the command of Jesus Christ, of Almighty God, I love my fellow man. I work to protect their liberties.”

Unless, of course, his fellow man is an immigrant. Or somebody trying to help an immigrant. Or, worse yet, someone trying to help an immigrant child. Then Metcalfe’s love somehow disappears.

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Airbender Movie Given Pa. Tax Credits for California Work

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M. Night Shyamalan is a hometown boy: He has long favored shooting his movies in and around Philadelphia. The problem for his 2010 flick, The Last Airbender, is that it was an effects-driven film that would be conjured largely inside a computer — and the kinds of computers that do that work are largely in California.

No problem for Shyamalan, nor for his studio Paramount Pictures. The physical movie was shot here, the visual effects were produced in San Francisco — and the movie claimed a Pennsylvania credit for the work done in California.
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What Happened to 93,000 Pennsylvania Workers?

Let us first acknowledge the good news: There are more people employed in Pennsylvania than there were a year ago. There are fewer unemployed. The unemployment rate, as a result, is 5.7 percent — a number that sounds almost normal for a normal economy.

If Gov. Corbett wants to take a victory lap, we can’t blame him.

But….

There’s one number in today’s labor statistics that is really bothersome, and it’s this: There are 93,000 fewer Pennsylvanians seeking work now than there were a year ago.

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How Will Pa. Supreme Court Deal With Porn Scandal?

Seamus McCaffery and J. Michael Eakin, have both been connected with an ever-growing Harrisburg scandal concerning racy emails send between top government officials.

Seamus McCaffery and J. Michael Eakin, have both been connected to an ever-growing Harrisburg scandal concerning racy emails sent between top government officials.

Now that Pennsylvania Supreme Court Justices Seamus McCaffery and J. Michael Eakin have been connected to racy emails in an ever-widening scandal, the question becomes: What next? Is exposure the end of the line, or will some kind of punishment ensue?

The Inquirer reports that three different options have emerged:
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