When last seen in NewsBusters, former NBA star Charles Barkley was in the midst of a conservative bashing spree as you can see here smearing Fox News with this quote:
“I watch CNN, they’re not f***ed up like Fox,” Barkley told B&C. “They are a mouthpiece for the Republican Party. I watch [Fox] a couple times when there is someone I want to see on there. But they’re corrupt."
This was on the heels of Barkley bashing conservatives a few months earlier on CNN as "fake Christians":
Hey, I live in Arizona. I have got great respect for Senator McCain. Great respect. But I don’t like the way the Republicans are taking this country. Every time I hear the word "conservative," it makes me sick to my stomach, because they’re really just fake Christians, as I call them. That’s all they are. But I just — I’m going to vote Democratic no matter what.
As soon as your humble correspondent flipped on the TV set this New Year morning, he heard an MSNBC report about record levels of snowfall that just hit the Pacific Northwest. Checking around the web, it turns out that other parts of the country were also hit with record levels of snowfall. Here are a few of the reports starting with this one in the Green Bay Press Gazette (emphasis mine):
Green Bay ended the month with 45.6 inches of snowfall, the most of any December on record.
Perhaps this video will become the symbol for the ignominious end of the blind belief in Global Warming. This year marks the coldest winter in decades despite all the warnings about Global Warming. Like Rush Limbaugh said, all this cold weather could be the result of the Supreme Being having a terrific sense of humor. And the Almighty must have been chuckling over MSNBC reporter Mike Sidell taking a tumble due to the cold and snow. Or should we call him Mike "Slidell?" I'm happy to know Mike is alright after becoming less than upright but his accident does illustrate very visually how erroneous the Global Warming cult has become.
Please do not attempt to walk out in the snow, Al Gore.
Once again we have a politician who is indicted on corruption charges and once again we have a news organization who "conveniently" neglects to mention his party label. You will look in vain for the party name of Puerto Rico Governor Anibal Acevedo Vila in this United Press International report:
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico, Dec 29, 2008 (UPI via COMTEX) -- Puerto Rico's governor, indicted on corruption charges, posted a video on the popular social networking site Facebook admitting to making mistakes.
Surprise! Surprise! Former New York Times reporter Chris Hedges has admitted what almost anyone familiar with his reality-challenged rantings already knew: he is a socialist. Hedges explains in Truthdig Why I Am a Socialist (emphasis mine):
The corporate forces that are looting the Treasury and have plunged us into a depression will not be contained by the two main political parties. The Democratic and Republican parties have become little more than squalid clubs of privilege and wealth, whores to money and corporate interests, hostage to a massive arms industry, and so adept at deception and self-delusion they no longer know truth from lies. We will either find our way out of this mess by embracing an uncompromising democratic socialism—one that will insist on massive government relief and work programs, the nationalization of electricity and gas companies, a universal, not-for-profit government health care program, the outlawing of hedge funds, a radical reduction of our bloated military budget and an end to imperial wars—or we will continue to be fleeced and impoverished by our bankrupt elite and shackled and chained by our surveillance state.
In a year full of political dirt hurled by both the Democrats and their mainstream media allies, one of the worst smears of all came near the end. This was the smear by Congressman Gary Ackerman of New York against the brother of Rembrandt by casting aspersions upon his artistic ability. Ackerman made the lack of talent charge against Murray Rembrandt last Sunday to Bob Schieffer on Face the Nation as relayed by Rush Limbaugh on his The Schlossberg Chronicles page (emphasis mine):
The McClatchy publishing company is more and more beginning to resemble an isolated bunker in the final stages of Götterdämmerung as ugly reality, such as their 99% stock price plunge, closes in on both fronts. Inside the bunker a leader is screaming madly, conjuring up phantom armies to ward off the unpleasant facts facing his company. However, in this case their ranting leader in the bunker isn't McClatchy CEO Gary Pruitt who is probably already quietly contemplating his permanent exile with his surfboard off the coast of Satellite Beach but Howard Weaver (photo), the outgoing VP of News at that company. So what set off this latest outburst in the closing act of the Twilight of the Clods? According to McClatchy Watch, it was a Web post by Jeff Jarvis at the Buzz Machine commenting on the fiscal woes of the newspaper industry including McClatchy:
A holiday change of pace from your humble correspondent here. Instead of taking a non-political article and looking for a political theme, I am taking this Slate article about political media divas who refuse to appear with other guests and transferring it to a non-political pet peeve of mine...people in the entertainment industry who have such bloated egos that they never appear on a show with other guests. Nowadays this means almost everybody in the entertainment business. However, check out this video from almost 40 years ago. It features Bob Hope, Dean Martin, and George Gobel together on the Johnny Carson show. All major celebrities at the time and they had no problem sharing the same interview couch. Nowadays it would be almost impossible for something like this to happen which is why such talk shows have become incredibly boring. Mostly they consist of solo performances by celebrities pitching their latest project.
Employees of McClatchy publishing in Iraq were in an unusually good mood recently. The occasion was the aftermath of the Iraqi journalist who tossed his shoes at President Bush at a press conference in Baghdad as you can see in these quotes from Inside Iraq, a blog for McClatchy journalists working in that country. The first quote was from McClatchy employee, "Laith," who was talking about his colleagues and the rest of the quotes were from commentors who may or may not be employed by McClatchy:
Some of the guys were happy and they were talking about the bravery of the journalist who threw his shoes at the American president. When I tried to explain my opinion, I was trying to tell the guys that I don't agree with the way the journalist behaved, but I was attacked by them. One of them said "come on Laith, Bush destroyed Iraq". Another said "he deserves more" while a third one said "he is an occupier." I tried to tell to tell they guys that this is an inslut for Maliki.
The "Shoe heard round the world" was an important symbolic event. I felt his action was appropriate and restrained considering the circumstances.
I applauded this act. I don't care that it is rude. Why are we concerned about etiquette when a country was destroyed? Did Bush ever apologize to the Iraqis for the hundreds of thousands of dead? Bush is an occupier, a clown pretending to be a hero, so enclosed in his own little self-certain world he probably was surprised an Iraqi could be that angry. I am not surprised. I am only surprised such a thing did not happen earlier.
With an impeccable sense of poor timing due to a snowstorm in Las Vegas and unusually cold weather throughout the nation, North Carolina Congressman Heath Shuler (D-Of Course) is warning that global warming could harm the Christmas tree industry in his state. Key word is "could" since there is no evidence that any Christmas trees in that state have suffered from a global warming that hasn't even been proven to exist. Here is the Associated Press story of Shuler sounding the alarm for something that could happen (emphasis mine):
North Carolina Rep. Heath Shuler and forestry observers are warning that climate change could alter the state's Christmas trees.
Shuler and others plan to hold a press conference Thursday to discuss the impact of climate change.
It looks like the best thing about the movie "Che" is the absolutely devastating but hilarious review given to you by New York Post writer Kyle Smith. The movie which glorifies the life of communist thug Che Guevara seems doomed to bomb at the box office since it runs for over 4 very tedious hours plus the fact that it is yet another in a long line of leftwing propaganda films promoted by Hollywood that always seem doomed to failure. The entertainment value of this movie, unless you are an Obama supporter with a Che Guevara flag on the wall, seems to be quite limited but the Post review of the propaganda film, Che It Ain't So, is quite entertaining:
MEET Che Guevara. Just think of him as Jesus plus Abraham Lincoln with a touch of Moses and Dr. Doug Ross. After 4½ hours of watching Dr. Ernesto "Che" Guevara heal the sick, teach the illiterate, daze the women, execute the lawless, defeat the corrupt, uplift the peasantry and spew the sound bite, I was convinced there would be a scene in which he turned water to Bacardi.
You can't spell cliché without "Che." And as I endured this mad dream directed - or perhaps committed - by Steven Soderbergh, I wondered where I'd seen it all before. The booted stomping through the greensward, the jungly target shooting? It's a remake of Woody Allen's "Bananas," right? Minus punch lines - or perhaps with them. "We are in a difficult situation," Che observes, at a point when his army is surrounded and forced to eat its horses.
Former New York governor Eliot Spitzer, who resigned due to his involvement in a prostitution ring, is slowly attempting to edge himself back into the public eye with his new column in Slate. The problem from the POV of The New Republic is that Spitzer is trying to make himself relevant again much too quickly without showing the proper remorse. As a result, The New Republic gives Spitzer some atonement advice written by Jacob Gershman which does the former governor no real service since anything he does now will come off as a cynical attempt to return to the public eye:
Although president-elect Barack Obama has stated that he is opposed to the reimposition of the so-called Fairness Doctrine, it remains to be seen if he can resist the pressure of Congress to bring back a measure that many on the left favor because they claim it will "Hush Rush." Leading the charge for bringing back the Fairness Doctrine is Congresswoman Anna Eshoo of California. According to this report, Eshoo not only wants to bring it back but to extend it to absurdly include cable and satellite where public airwaves are not even involved:
Congresswoman Anna Eshoo, D-Palo Alto, said Monday she will work to restore the Fairness Doctrine and have it apply to cable and satellite programming as well as radio and TV.
The high level Justice Department official who leaked FISA information to the New York Times, Thomas Tamm, is currently featured on the cover of Newsweek along with the story about his motivations for leaking the details of the top secret program to monitor communications between terrorist suspects. Newsweek attempts to portray Tamm as some sort of noble hero who was torn by his decision to violate the secrecy of the FISA program:
The shoes had hardly left the hand of the Iraqi who tossed them at President Bush during the Baghdad press conference yesterday when the leftwing blogosphere began cheering him as some sort of hero. The incredible success of the Surge in Iraq has been very frustrating for the left. Along with Joe Biden they claimed that the Surge could never work. Problem was that it worked. That is why they have been so silent recently on the topic of the Iraq. The complete turnaround there has been much too embarrassing for them to mention Iraq very much...until now. The shoes tossed by that Iraqi journalist let loose a river of pent up frustration in the form of hailing the shoe tosser. Here is a sampling of the the reaction from the Daily Kos:
The reviews are in for the environmentally themed "The Day the Earth Stood Still" remake and the results are more devastating than any destruction that Gort could do to our planet. Over at Rotten Tomatoes, this remake received a lowly 24% on the Tomatometer. This lousy reception to "The Day the Earth Stood Still" remake was fairly predictable. Back in April, Newsbusters writer Warner Todd Huston discussed the reasons why this movie remake would have problems:
The latest message being promoted by the mainstream media echo chamber is that Rod Blagojevich is insane. They just can't seem to face the fact that Blagojevich is a product of the same corrupt Democrat Chicago political machine which Barack Obama belongs to so they have recently begun actively promoting the idea of Blagojevich as some sort of totally irrational loon even to the extent of pointing out his well-groomed hair as evidence of his mental illness. Fortunately, Chicago Tribune writer John Kass has provided a reality check on this MSM silliness with his article titled "By Chicago standards, Blagojevich isn't crazy.":
When it comes to Gov. Rod Blagojevich (D-Dead Meat), many national TV talking heads can't resist playing amateur psychiatrist.
"He's crazy," said one talking head of our governor. "A sociopath!" said another. "He should have been put in a straitjacket, not handcuffs," said a third, all of them diagnosing Blagojevich as cuckoo.
Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich has become such a huge embarrassment to his fellow Democrats that the mainstream media is now trying to explain away his over-the-top corruption as insanity on his part. And the sign of Blagojevich's insanity according to some media sources is his incredibly well-groomed hair. It seems that the Chicago Sun-Times is at the forefront of promoting Blagojevich insanity in two separate articles. First we have the Sun-Times Mark Brown promoting the idea of Blagojevich as a complete loon:
Rod Blagojevich's defense lawyers might want to consider an insanity defense.
The federal government's secret tape recordings of the governor's scheming during the past two months confirm what a lot of people have been saying about him for a long time now.
He's utterly mad. Completely and totally off his rocker.
And here's where it might actually work as a legal defense: He's incapable of distinguishing between right and wrong.
We've already seen how the media is covering up for Barack Obama to the extent of removing any information on the web that would show he met with Rod Blagojevich recently as chronicled by NewsBusters editor Tom Blumer. And now we have evidence that Jesse Jackson, Jr. "misspoke" when he claimed yesterday that the meeting he had with Monday Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich was the first time the two had met in four years. It turns out that there is a video of a sobbing Jesse Jackson, Jr. embracing Blagojevich just last August at a breakfast of the Illinois delegation to the Democrat Nation Convention in Denver. Here is how the incredibly surreal hugfest was covered by the Chicago Tribune:
Let's hug it out
An emotional Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr. touched off a surreal hugfest among bickering top Illinois Democrats meeting at a convention delegation breakfast, all in the name of party unity and Sen. Barack Obama’s presidential bid. Here's the tale of the tape:
Al Franken has discovered a new use for YouTube: uploading a video to that site in order to emotionally influence the Minnesota Canvassing Board to count the disputed absentee ballots in that state. Here is how Yid With Lid describes the Franken video:
Looking to put more pressure on the canvassing board who will determine the fate of the absentee ballots, Minnesota Senate Candidate Al Franken has created a sappy "tug at the heart strings" youtube video to try to convince them to allow in the rejected ballots that favor the Comic. The video plays like a bad episode of Queen for a day. It is simply an attempt to discredit the local election officials through cheap Soap Opera theatrics.
Corruption to the left of him. Corruption to the right of him. Corruption right in front of him. Yet in spite of all this, Howard Fineman of Newsweek maintains that Barack Obama has been somehow hermetically sealed off from Chicago corruption throughout his political career. Fineman is merely echoing the premise currently being promoted by much of the media in his Newsweek article about Illinois governor Rod Blagovech and Jesse Jackson, Jr.. Fineman starts out by hinting that Jesse Jackson, Jr. was corruptible (emphasis mine):
What I know about the South Side of Chicago I know not from Barack Obama, but from Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. In the summer of 1997, I spent two days with him there. He was in his second term representing the area. He was fond of it, but the real message I got from him was: I want to be in the Loop, literally.
The son of the civil-rights leader had attended St. Albans School in Washington and gone on to earn a law degree. He of course knew the history of the movement, and revered it. He admired his dad, whom he called "The Rev." But it was clear that Junior hungered for proximity to established money and power.
He told me about the time that friends in the business world had taken him downtown for a tour of the Federal Reserve's branch on LaSalle Street. He had been ushered into the inner sanctum and shown the real stuff: bundled stacks of Benjamins.
With all the attention being focused on the Rod Blagojevich scandal involving the attempted selling of the U.S. senate seat vacancy by the Illinois governor, another senate vacancy seems to have been almost forgotten. That is the New York senate seat to be left vacant by Hillary Clinton who will soon become the Secretary of State.
So who should New York governor David Paterson appoint to that senate seat? Washington Post writer Ruth Marcus provides excellent reasons why it shouldn't be Caroline Kennedy but then, absurdly, decides she needs to become a senator so as to fulfill the "girly" dream of Ms Marcus to make possible the "modern fairy tale to have the little princess grow up to be a senator." I kid you not. First Marcus explains how her head says "no" but her heart says "yes" in her article about the possible appointment of Caroline Kennedy to the senate (emphasis mine):
On the question of Caroline Kennedy for Senate, my head says no, on balance. My heart says yes! Yes! Right now, as you might guess from the hedging on the former and the exclamation points on the latter, my heart is winning.
Remember Baghdad Bob? He was the Iraqi press spokesmen who caused much amusement in the West because of his unrealistically upbeat pronouncements when Iraq was invaded by the United States and its allies in 2003. Among Baghdad Bob's funnier announcements was his declaration that no Americans were in Baghdad at the same moment when American troops were patrolling the streets of that city just a few hundred yards from where he was holding that press conference. Well, the newspaper industry has its own Baghdad Bob in the form of McClatchy CEO, Gary Pruitt, who in early 2007 gave his own unrealistically upbeat reports to his company's employees on the purchase of Knight-Ridder in 2006. That purchase quickly turned into an utter disaster as evidenced that the former Knight-Ridder flagship newspaper, the Miami Herald, is now being put up for sale by McClatchy. Below are a few excerpts from the 2007 video of Pruitt performing his Baghdad Bob routine including a bizarre invocation of that great "philosopher," Lenny Kravitz:
Hi. I'm Gary Pruitt, CEO of McClatchy. This has been a busy year for all of us and I haven't been able to meet with as many of you as I'd like. I hope to start changing that. But for now I would want to spend a few minutes here talking to you about our company. Where we've been and where we're headed. Let's start with last year. Conventional wisdom is that 2006 was a catastrophe for the newspaper industry. That's just not the case.
"In Umm Qasr, the fighting is fierce and we have inflicted many damages. The stupid enemy, the Americans and British, failed completely. They're not making any penetration."
Although the New York Times enthusiastically supports the appointment of Janet Napolitano as Homeland Security secretary, they fear a downside for the state of Arizona. Evil Republicans would be left in charge. The Times editorial lays out the tone of their concern starting with the very title: "State of Fear." You can pretty much tell the liberal Times attitude towards Republicans right from the get-go of their editorial (emphasis mine):
If Gov. Janet Napolitano of Arizona is confirmed as homeland security secretary, she will leave behind a state in full Republican control, with immigration zealots embedded in both houses of the Legislature, and not enough moderates to go around.
Mark Pinsky, writing for the New Republic, has an idea of what to do with all the journalists currently being laid off by the dying newspapers around the country: put them on the public payroll by hiring them for a resurrected Federal Writers Project. This was the New Deal project which provided funding for works which were primarily of a leftwing nature. And any current version of this government program is likely to have the same political ideology as its predecessor. Pinksy explains his dream of subsidizing unemployed journalists (emphasis mine):
Barack Obama sounds like he wants to reach back to the New Deal's Works Progress Administration to jump start the economy with an economic stimulus proposal featuring infrastructure repair. If so, it may be time for the man who would be FDR to take a look at another successful--but largely forgotten--jobs program from the Depression era: the Federal Writers Project.
In every recount of the senate election from Minnesota, incumbent senator Norm Coleman has consistently been ahead of challenger Al Franken by hundreds of votes. At this point it looks like it will be impossible for Franken to exceed Coleman's total in the recount of the few ballots remaining. So what is the solution of New York Times guest op-ed columnist and associate professor of journalism at New York University, Charles Seife? Why just declare the election a "statistical tie" and flip a coin to determine the winner. Seife explains how he has come up with his laughable resolution for the election in which Coleman continues to lead:
Before the recount began on Nov. 19, Mr. Coleman and Mr. Franken were within about 200 votes of each other. With a little under three million ballots cast in the election, that margin was unbelievably small: a few thousandths of a percent separated the two candidates. So, as Minnesota law requires, election officials began counting, by hand, every single ballot from the more than 4,000 precincts around the state.
The only thing remotely interesting about San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom's bizarre decision to upload his incredibly dull 7.5 hour "state of the city" speech to YouTube is the knowledge that it is sure to inspire parodies. So how dull is Newsom's speech? Well I challenge you to listen to just a couple of minutes of it without hearing the beckoning call of Mr. Sandman enticing you to enter a deep slumber. Here is the take on this YouTube speech by Michelle Malkin:
Hey, remember that judge who sentenced noise violators to Barry Manilow music? Here’s a worse sentence: Sitting through 7.5 hours of San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom droning on and on and on about the “state of the city.” There are YouTube segments on health care, education, and the environment. But nada on the city’s infamously deadly illegal alien sanctuary policies.
He’s uploaded his entire speech on YouTube. Even his fellow libs can’t take it:
There is a terrific Gary Larson cartoon (right) showing a psychiatrist jotting notes down about his patient who is talking while reclining on a couch. On his notepad, the shrink is writing, "Just plain nuts!" Well, that is the feeling of your humble correspondent about psychologist Lauren Slater after reading the beyond bizarre recollections of her "love life" in the New York Times. And why on earth did the Times even publish her sanity challenged screed? Were they hoping the shock value would help boost their sagging circulation? In any event, I must warn the reader about continuing further. To read Slater's much too personal account could cause you to want to take a scorchingly hot shower to wash away all filthy memories of her sordid life:
I COULD chalk it up to getting older, the fact that sex interests me these days about as much as playing checkers. But the fact is I’ve never much liked sex, even though it has, on occasion, captivated me. Says my proverbial therapist: “Sex threatens you, Lauren. You feel overcome.”
Another distinctly less sexy possibility is that I have never much liked sex because, when all is said and done, there’s not much to like. I mean, really: What is the big deal? Especially when it’s with the same person, over and over again; from an evolutionary standpoint, that simply couldn’t be right. I, for one, have always become bored of sex within the first six months of meeting a man, the act paling for me just as the sun pales at the approach of winter, and as predictably, too.
Remember how most of the mainstream media used to deride Ronald Reagan to the extent of constantly declaring the "end of the Reagan era?' Well, now the MSM is starting to find "strange new respect" for Reagan but primarily as a way to boost Barack Obama. Newsweek columnist, Eleanor Clift, now favorably compares Obama to Ronald Reagan. Gone is the previous antagonism to The Gipper which has been replaced by admiration for his wisdom (emphasis mine):
Enough with the Lincoln analogies; Reagan is the president that Barack Obama is most closely modeling himself after. Ronald Reagan inherited stagflation, a defeat abroad and a nation at its nadir in morale. Through the sheer force of his personality as much as his policies, four years later, it was "Morning in America," the theme of his 1984 re-election campaign when he won 49 states. Obama isn't president yet, but his determined calm and orderly transition pace appear to be soothing the financial markets, producing the first sustained gain in stocks since the mid-September meltdown.
Suddenly popular Kathleen Parker is continuing on her new shtick: pretending to be conservative while bashing conservatives. Her latest effort in this gig is this Washington Post column titled, "Giving Up on God." As you can see, it resembles the fake "advice" that liberals often give to Republicans but in this case it is coming from somebody supposedly conservative. So let us now watch Parker with her latest bid to remain popular with the Georgetown party set (emphasis mine):
As Republicans sort out the reasons for their defeat, they likely will overlook or dismiss the gorilla in the pulpit.