When I began watching my DVR recording of Morning Joe today, I was of course wondering which clip from yesterday's Weiner press conference Morning Joe had chosen for its show-opener. When instead a clip of Jon Stewart mocking Sarah Palin appeared, I literally wondered if I was playing the recording of the wrong day's Morning Joe.
But as the first half-hour unfolded, it became obvious that Morning Joe had made a conscious decision to black out any mention of Weiner-gate during today's first half-hour. Hat tip NB reader Matthew E.
This column makes a living lambasting Mika Brzezinski for her liberalism. So let's give the Morning Joe co-host credit when she dares deviate from the lefty line.
On today's Morning Joe, Mika persistently questioned Jessica Valenti, a feminist proponent of [their term] "Slut Walks," as to whether she'd want her daughter to dress like one. Valenti, happy to push others out into the streets in skimpy clothes, twice dodged Mika's question, the second time with a particularly lame line.
So what if the markets tank? Pushing the "progressive" agenda is the paramount goal. That's the advice Cenk Uygur and his left-wing guest David Sirota have for President Obama. On a day when awful job growth numbers stirred fears of a double-dip recession, Uygur and Sirota still scolded Obama for suggesting that he had to be cautious in his public statements because of the possible impact on markets and the world at large.
Egged on by Uygur, Sirota said Obama should push his agenda "almost regardless" of the consequences.
So now we know: Donny Deutsch would advise Dems caught in a sex scandal . . . to fabricate a false story.
On today's Morning Joe, ad man Deutsch stated that, when caught with his pants down, Anthony Weiner should have been "very honest" and claimed that he had sent the picture to his wife. And by "very honest," Deutsch of course means "very dishonest" since no one, starting with Weiner himself, suggests that the congressman meant to send the shot to his wife but that somehow it went out to a 21-year old college student in Seattle. Hat tip reader Texndoc.
File this one under: Imagine If The Partisan Tables Were Turned.
On her MSNBC show this evening, Rachel Maddow repeatedly mocked Republican Senate leader Mitch McConnell as "little Mitch, the rodeo queen."
Maddow was miffed over McConnell's arranging a Senate vote on the raising of the debt ceiling, and by extension the Republican position on Medicare reform. And so, for about ten--interminable--minutes, Maddow beat into the ground a labored metaphor, somehow analogizing McConnell to the cowgirls in Utah who were forced to compete on stick ponies because the real horses had been sidelined by illness.
Talk about damned if you do, damned if you don't! The left regularly claims that racism explains Republican opposition to Barack Obama. But let Republicans support a black candidate, and--guess what?--race is behind that too!
For good measure, lefty radio talker Sam Seder applauded Cain's [since-retracted] statement on Fox News Sunday that the "right of return" should be the subject of negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians. In other words, Seder was excited by the prospect of Israel negotiating the terms of its own national suicide.
Steve Israel had his talking points, and he was sticking to them. Republicans want to "end Medicare" in order to give tax cuts to the big oil companies. On Morning, Joe Scarborough repeatedly called out Israel, head of the Dem congressional campaign committee, on his demagoguery. Not that it stopped the Dem congressman from New York from repeating his rap.
For good measure, Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett appeared later and claimed that Medicare could be maintained without cutting a penny of benefits to seniors merely by finding various "efficiencies" in the program. Waste, fraud and abuse ride again!
Want to know how socialists think? Check out Michael Moore on MSNBC this evening, urging President Obama to use the government's power over the auto manufacturers to . . . kill the internal combustion engine and replace cars with mass transit.
As everyone knows, politicians and pundits know what people need better than billions of people themselves. You don't want to ride the rails? Tough: yes you do. Watch Moore make his government-knows-best suggestion to kill the engine of progress to Larry O'Donnell this evening.
"He's a Morning Joe candidate." That could be the kiss of death among Republican primary voters, but Mark Halperin meant it as a compliment. Today's Morning Joe panel was unanimous in its praise for Huntsman's performance in New Hampshire over the weekend.
More from Mark Halperin:
"As impressive as any couple I've seen . . . I was pretty blown away by how effective he was . . . more [comfortable in his skin] than Barack Obama and George Bush, and they for me in my career have been the gold standard . . . One of the liberal trackers said 'I really like this guy. I'd cross over.'"
Kind of disappointing--nothing about Republicans head-butting widows or knocking the crutches from the arms of the disabled. Even so, let's give Damon Silvers credit: the union boss did claim that Republicans "literally deny clothing to foster kids to give rich people tax cuts."
AFL-CIO honcho Damon Silvers made the hysterically hyperbolic claim on Cenk Uygur's MSNBC show this evening.
Republicans have responded with widespread opprobrium to President Obama's speech on the Middle East. Mitt Romney epitomized GOP reaction in saying PBO had "thrown Israel under the bus."
Perhaps we shouldn't be too surprised, but at MSNBC, Obama was actually criticized last night . . . for not being hard enough on Israel. Cenk Uygur said "the president's speech was too much leaning towards Israel."
Uygur also disagreed with Obama's disapproval of any attempt by the Palestinians to stage an end-run on a negotiated peace by going to the UN to have their state established. And for good measure, Cenk accused Israel of the "oppression" of the Palestinians.
Newt Gingrich came in for some serious criticism on today's Morning Joe.
Reacting to footage of Newt on Meet the Press alluding to Paul Ryan's health care proposal as "radical," Joe Scarborough accused Gingrich of being in "the mushy middle." Pat Buchanan came with the unkindest cut of all, saying Gingrich is "out on the left wing of the Republican party."
What better way for ABC to kick off its weekend news coverage than by mocking the physical appearance of a Republican presidential candidate? That's apparently what someone at Good Morning America was thinking today.
As co-host Dan Harris opened the show by teasing an upcoming story about a study suggesting that allowing one's spouse to gawk at others they find attractive is good for the relationship, footage of . . . Newt Gingrich suddenly appeared on screen.
Harris made as if it were a mistake: "and no, not Newt Gingrich."
Rachel Maddow has engaged in a strange--sinister?--irony. On her MSNBC show last night, one moment Maddow was condemning the late Senator Joe McCarthy for encouraging people to "turn in their friends" in the entertainment industry. The next moment, Maddow was urging her viewers to . . . turn in someone in the entertainment industry--the animator of Mike Huckabee's history series for kids.
Maddow devoted a sarcastic segment to mocking Huckabee's series of DVDs on American history. Along the way she accused Huckabee of engaging in revisionist history. Her example was the way a Huckabee DVD described Ronald Reagan's testimony as a friendly witness at a McCarthy hearing, in his role as president of the Screen Actors Guild, as Reagan having "worked against Communism in Hollywood."
Maddow then said this: "We asked [Huckabee's production company] today who had done the animation on these DVDs. They would not tell us. If you know who brought this amazing animated sauce to life, please get in touch with us. We would like to know."
Mike Barnicle has greeted Newt Gingrich's announcement of his presidential candidacy with a sneer, calling the former Speaker of the House "a delusional loser." The former Kennedy-clan retainer and Boston Globe columnist seasoned his sneer with snobbery, launching an ignorant attack on Gingrich's educational background.
Left-wing Columbia Professor Jeffrey Sachs, a frequent Morning Joe guest, has accused US special operations forces of committing "high-tech murder on a large scale" for their targeted campaign of killing or capturing Al Qaeda Taliban forces in Afghanistan.
Sachs made his contemptible accusation on today's Morning Joe in the course of a discussion of the PBS Frontline documentary "Kill/Capture" on the JSOC operations. Stephen Grey, a producer of the documentary, was a guest.
On his MSNBC show this evening, Chris Matthews criticized Hillary's lack of "humanity" for denying that, in the photo of her in the Situation Room during the attack on Bin Laden, she was having an emotional reaction. Matthews played video of Hillary suggesting that rather than reacting in horror, she was merely stifling a cough. Riiight.
On the one hand, Hillary richly deserved Matthews' wrist-rap for her blatantly phony explanation. Madame 3 AM obviously doesn't want to be seen to be looking weak. Still, it was surprising to witness the harsh terms with which Matthews went after Clinton. Yo Chris, your guy pounded her in the primaries. Chill!
Just when the media adulation of Barack Obama might have been showing signs of waning, along comes the killing of Osama Bin Laden to drive it to new sycophantic heights. In the genre, it will be hard to outdo the schoolgirl-crushiness of Margaret Carlson.
On today's Morning Joe, Carlson characterized the operation against Osama Bin Laden as the moment when "Professor Obama turned into General Obama and ran this incredible raid."
Lincoln's Gettysburg Address. FDR's "we have nothing to fear but fear itself." Reagan's "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall." Meh. Not bad, but nothing compared with Barack Obama's announcement last night of the killing of Osama Bin Laden . . . at least, apparently, in the eyes of Donny Deutsch.
Appearing on Morning Joe today, Deutsch said of President Obama's remarks "I have never seen a more commanding Commander-in-Chief."
Commenting on the death of Osama Bin Laden, Rep. Gary Ackerman has gloated: "this is the 'Mission Accomplished' moment President Bush only fantasized about." Could the Dem from New York have gotten the inspiration for his taunt from Andrea Mitchell?
The question arises because in the run-up to President Obama's announcement last night, Mitchell said something similar, if not quite as pointedly partisan.
Not only did Mitchell throw Mission Accomplished in Pres. Bush's face, she also, for purposes of taking another slap at Pres. Bush, misrepresented the history of Tora Bora. Mitchell claimed that John Kerry made it a 2004 campaign issue on the basis that OBL could have been killed or captured there "if troops had not been moved to Iraq." But the Battle of Tora Bora took place in 2001 and the Iraq war didn't start until 2003. Hat tip NB reader Mr. Forward.
President George W. Bush's nickname for David Gregory was "Stretch." True to his moniker, the elongated Meet The Press host gave a long, tall, three-part smooch to President Obama during his appearance on this morning's Today Show.
Speaking with weekend Today co-host Jenna Wolfe: Gregory reported favorably on: 1. the Tripoli bombing that might have killed members of Khaddafy's family; 2. the president's handling of the devastating tornadoes that hit the South; and 3. how the president and Seth Meyers supposedly got the better of Donald Trump at the White House Correspondents Association Dinner.
Even at MSNBC, which gets crushed of course by Fox News in every prime-time slot, Cenk Uygur manages to come in dead last in ratings among his liberal peers.
So when Cenk claims that he doesn't want to cover Donald Trump but is forced to do so by The Donald's popularity, the baloney-meter starts screaming. Uygur opened his show last evening with a long segment on Trump, all the while apologizing to his audience for doing so.
One more sign the Age of Civility is over: an MSNBC host urging Dems to be more "vicious" toward Republicans. Oh, and to engage in more "name-calling."
Apparently writing off any career ambitions of succeeding to the Miss Manners slot, Cenk Uygur issued his recommendations last night in the course of disagreeing with a Dem congressman who was insufficiently coarse for Cenk's taste.
Martin Bashir has dared go where even most congressional Dems won't: praising Britain's National Health Service and by implication the socialization of medicine it represents.
On today's Morning Joe, Bashir said the National Health Service is "a wonderful idea." For good measure, the British-born Bashir, who hosts a regular afternoon slot in the MSNBC line-up, also vastly overstated the percentage of the British workforce employed by the government. He claimed that "over 40%" in the UK are "in the public workforce." In fact, as per this official-seeming website, the actual percentage as of last month was about half that, in the range of 20-22% [6 million public-sector workers out of a total workforce of 29 million].
Chrystia Freeland has called the US prison system an "American Gulag Archipelago." The Global Editor-at-Large of Reuters made her comment during today's Dylan Ratigan show on MSNBC.
The context was a discussion of the recent WikiLeaks document dump about Gitmo, but Freeland was clearly speaking of the domestic US prison system, not our military prisons. Ratigan picked up on her theme, saying we could cut our prison costs in half if marijuana were legalized.
Of all the reasons to send our people to fight and die in Afghanistan, spending $2 billion per week in the process, Howard Dean has managed to come up with perhaps the worst: feminism.
On today's Morning Joe, Dean explained that "the whole reason" he used to support President Obama's waging of the Afghanistan war was that leaving the country would plunge its women back into "the Stone Age." But now that Afghan President Karzai has showed insufficient support for women's right in Dean's eyes, it's time to get out.
Call me a cynic, but I've been dubious about just how accidental were President Obama's supposedly "hot mic" remarks about his budget negotations with the Republicans.
Does a president who has been frequently criticized for a lack of toughness really mind being "caught" sounding muy macho?
My skepticism was sharpened by GMA's report on the matter this morning. The graphic referred to Obama's "tough talk." And for good measure, John Avlon of the lefty Daily Beast was imported to declare that the president's supposedly candid performance "heightens his reputation for leadership." I know what you're thinking: what reputation?