National Press Club

National Press Club Decries Embedding Censorship

October 18, 2009

The U.S. military’s decision to bar embedded reporters in Afghanistan from publishing photographs of U.S. military personnel injured or killed in action hampers journalists' ability to independently report the war and the public's right to know.

\"The U.S. military should not determine what is and is not news," National Press Club President Donna Leinwand said. "Censoring journalists who cover war and permitting only government-approved news and photographs undermines our country's fundamental commitment to a free and independent press."

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Ventriloquist Dunham, "Little People in Boxes" Trade Barbs

October 15, 2009 | By Lorna Aldrich |

How does a stand-up comedian react to having his act viewed 90 million times on YouTube in the past two years? Ventriloquist Jeff Dunham, appearing at the Club with his “little people in boxes” Oct. 12, said he was surprised by three things: developing an international following, performing in arenas when his previous highest aspiration had been to play theaters and finding that “I have three daughters, and I’m actually cool.”

He expressed amazement that people in Helsinki could shout lines from his DVDs.

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Sheehan Describes Start of Cold War

October 13, 2009 | By jJoseph Luchok |

“Without Bernard Schriever we might not be here this evening. We might be irradiated dust,” Pulitzer Prize-winning author Neil Sheehan told a Club audience Oct. 7.

Sheeham's new book, "A Fiery Peace in a Cold War," tells the story of the Cold war from its beginning.

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Thomas Friedman to Receive NPC Fourth Estate Award

October 12, 2009

Thomas Friedman, the ground-breaking New York Times foreign affairs columnist and author, will receive the 2009 Fourth Estate Award, the National Press Club's highest honor.

The award is bestowed annually to an individual who has achieved distinction for a lifetime of contributions to American journalism. And that’s just what Friedman, a three-time Pulitzer Prize winner and author of best-selling books such as “Flat, Hot and Crowded,” has done, said Donna Leinwand, NPC president.

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U.S. Postal Service in acute financial crisis, Postmaster General says

October 9, 2009 | By Hope Katz Gibbs

The 234-year-old U.S. Postal Service is in acute financial crisis, John Potter, the 72nd Postmaster General said Thursday during a National Press Club luncheon.

After losing a projected $7 billion in the fiscal year ending Sept. 30, Potter said he is working to help the USPS reinvent itself. It won’t be an easy task, as 28 billion fewer pieces of mail were sent last year compared to fiscal year 2008, he said. Potter said that holiday mail, one of the traditionally highest volume periods of the year, was flat last year — and he expects it to be flat this December, as well.

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Semiconductor Exec Stresses Importance of Educated Workforce

October 7, 2009 | By Mark Schoeff Jr. |

GlobalFoundries, a new semiconductor company, is swimming against the economic tide. In the midst of a deep recession, it broke ground over the summer on a $4.2 billion manufacturing facility in upstate New York that will employ 1,500.

The firm chose a domestic location for its operation rather than China, Brazil or Russia because of the “ecosystem” created by the collaboration between government, educational institutions and the private sector, GlobalFoundries chairman Hector Ruiz said at an Oct. 5 Newsmaker.

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ACORN Leader Concedes Scandal, Vows Reform, New Successes

October 7, 2009 | By Andrew Kreig |

The CEO of the embattled community organizing group ACORN vowed to reform its management in the wake of scandal and funding cutbacks at an Oct. 6 Speakers Committee news conference.

“Nothing will be able to wipe away these 40 years of work, and nothing will be able to stop us from 40 more,” Bertha Lewis said.

ACORN, founded in Little Rock in 1970, claims nearly 500,000 dues-paying members as it advocates for raising the minimum wage, improving banking practices for low-income customers and expanding voter registration.

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Newspapers Far From Dead But Looking to Shift Burden of Revenue, Panelists Say

October 6, 2009 | By Gil Klein |

Newspapers are still looking to “unlock the funding streams” that will keep vibrant journalism alive, but most of them still make money today, if not the profits they had once enjoyed, panelists told host Marvin Kalb on the latest edition of “The Kalb Report” Oct. 5.

“The Post will be here for a long time to come,” said Marcus Brauchli, executive editor of the Washington Post. “We serve readers over every platform that comes along. Our circulation has been stable over the last year or so.”

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Speakers Urge More Action for Kids Caught in Disasters

October 5, 2009 | By Terry Hill |

America's disaster preparedness posture for children is inadequate and makes them the most vulnerable victims in crises like the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, the chairman of the National Commission on Children and Disasters, Mark K. Shriver, told a National Press Club audience Oct. 5.

"One defining quality that all Americans will remember about the last 10 years is the relentless onslaught of natural and manmade disasters and the constant threat of new ones that can strike at any moment," Shriver said. "For too many of us, this has been remembered as the disaster decade."

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Head of UN Commission on Gaza War Violations Reports on Status

October 5, 2009 | By p

The head of a U.N. commission that investigated claims of human rights violations in the 2008-09 Gaza conflict rejected Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanhyahu's charge that any attempts to follow up on the group's recommendations could kill any renewed peace talks with the Palestinians.

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