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By Tim Graham | August 8, 2011 | 8:13 AM EDT

On the front page of its Style section, Monday's Washington Post highlighted PR combat between two right-leaning media tycoons -- Fox News owner Rupert Murdoch and Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi. Both are mired in scandal, which might explain the Post's inside headline: "How do you say 'schadenfraude' in Italian?" They might be speaking for Berlusconi enjoying Murdoch's troubles, but it better explains the liberal media's loathing for both figures.

Reporter Jason Horowitz trotted out the usual expert on the duo, Italian professor Fabrizio Perretti, a former fellow at Harvard, who proclaimed the amazingly silly media line that Murdoch has endangered his own business empire by favoring one party too closely -- as if the Washington Post has never done anything of the sort with the Democrats:

By Brad Wilmouth | August 8, 2011 | 7:25 AM EDT

On both Good Morning America and World News, two different ABC correspondents filed separate reports recounting that some Christians oppose Texas Governor Rick Perry’s prayer rally from the weekend, but, in both reports, clips of left-wing figures like the Reverend Barry Lynn of Americans United for the Separation of Church and State, and Drew Courtney of People for the American Way were shown, instead of showing any more mainstream Christians as examples of dissent.

The ABC and NBC morning and evening newscasts on Sunday gave attention to President Obama's attack on the Republican presidential candidates for not scolding a couple of audience members who booed a gay solder who asked a question about gays in the military at a recent debate. Monday's Special Report with Bret Baier on FNC noted that Obama has his own history of standing by without condemning inappropriate comments at public events.ABC correspondent David Kerley filed full reports devoted to the story on both Good Morning America and World News Sunday, while NBC's Mike Viqueira mentioned Obama's line of attack within reports that dealt with other political issues on Today and the NBC Nightly News.

By Tom Blumer | August 8, 2011 | 1:36 AM EDT

We've just spent the past month or so having politicians and the press tell us that if there was no debt-ceiling deal by August 2, the government might default on its debts (of course, Tim Geithner and Barack Obama could indeed have strategically defaulted if they had wished, but work with me here).

But Sunday on Meet the Press, in a remark I expect will not be relayed much if at all by the rest of the establishment press, Alan Greenspan said that default is impossible -- which puts him directly at odds with the rest of Washington's elites and Ben Bernanke, his successor as Federal Reserve chairman. On July 14, Bernanke said: "A default on ... (U.S. Treasury) securities would throw the financial system ... potentially into chaos."

Wait until you see the reason why Greenspan says default is impossible, as carried at CNBC's web site in an item by Patrick Allen:

By Tom Blumer | August 7, 2011 | 11:58 PM EDT

In an otherwise typically dismal column about President Barack Obama which is one part pity party and another part an attempt at building him a he-man reputation (not kidding), New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd describes an upcoming movie featuring the exploits of Navy SEAL Team 6 in the operation which killed Osama Bin Laden on May 1.

Dowd celebrates the fact that the movie's currently anticipated opening is October 12, 2012, describing it as "perfectly timed" and "just as Obamaland was hoping." She expects that it will "give a home-stretch boost to a campaign that has grown tougher," and "counter Obama’s growing reputation as ineffectual."

Here are the relevant paragraphs from Dowd's column, including reference to a New Yorker column about the operation which has become the subject of considerable controversy (bolds and numbered tags are mine):

By Tim Graham | August 7, 2011 | 11:14 PM EDT

NBC's going to have a tough time with critics from both directions on its new show "The Playboy Club."  Radical feminist Gloria Steinem casually dismissed the series in a panel discussion at the Television Critics Association confab in Los Angeles. Steinem, who once went undercover as a Playboy bunny, strongly suggested the show was exploiting the past to feed the male need for nostalgia in tough economic times.

TV critics weren't buying NBC's claim the show was female-empowering.  “I hear someone use the word ‘empowering’ but I’ve heard from my female readers that a show centered on Playboy…they don’t see it as empowering,” said one TV critic. “And your central story involves a woman who needs to rely on a man to get through the crisis that she in the middle of. How is this show empowering and how are you going to be able to sell female viewers on this show -- a show centered on a nudie magazine -- as empowering?”

By Tom Johnson | August 7, 2011 | 9:56 PM EDT

John Boehner said he got 98 percent of what he wanted from the debt deal. That sounds about right, since Kossacks apparently got roughly two percent of what they wanted, judging from their rage-filled blasts this past week at Republicans, conservatives, the Tea Party, and businessmen.

As usual, each headline is preceded by the blogger's name or pseudonym.

By Noel Sheppard | August 7, 2011 | 8:01 PM EDT

The August 15 issue of Newsweek has a cover story about Congresswoman Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.).

If Gawker is right, she's not going to like the picture the magazine used:

By Noel Sheppard | August 7, 2011 | 7:11 PM EDT

John Kerry's claim on Sunday's "Meet the Press" that Standard and Poor's U.S. credit rating decision Friday is a "Tea Party Downgrade" is already catching on in liberal circles.

The far-left has taken it on as a rallying cry:

By Noel Sheppard | August 7, 2011 | 6:44 PM EDT

It wasn't enough for "Meet the Press" host David Gregory to nicely set up Senator John Kerry (D-Mass.) to blame Standard and Poor's downgrade of America's credit rating on the Tea Party Sunday.

The producers actually felt Kerry's "Tea Party Downgrade" comment was important enough to replay again at the end of the show (video follows with transcript and commentary):

By Noel Sheppard | August 7, 2011 | 5:48 PM EDT

As NewsBusters previously reported, MSNBC's Rachel Maddow was rewarded for lying about Rush Limbaugh on her program Thursday by getting a guest appearance on Sunday's "Meet the Press."

The top brass at NBC should be pleased with their decision for Maddow proceeded to thoroughly misrepresent the reasons Standard and Poor's gave for downgrading America's debt Friday (video follows with transcript and commentary):

By Tom Blumer | August 7, 2011 | 5:47 PM EDT

On August 2 on the Senate floor, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid claimed that the economy under George W. Bush lost eight million jobs.

PolitiFact, which occasionally seems to engage in verbal gymnastics to give Democrats and leftists the benefit of the doubt, was more than a little annoyed with Reid's claim, giving it a rating of "Pants on Fire." As will be demonstrated later, virtually no one else in the press has deemed Harry's howler newsworthy.

Here are excerpts from PolitiFact's pommeling (HT Doug Powers at Michelle Malkin's place, where the preferred evaluation is "Liar, liar, pomegranates on fire"):

By Noel Sheppard | August 7, 2011 | 1:51 PM EDT

ABC's Cokie Roberts said something on national television Sunday that made her colleague George Will shake his head on camera.

During a "This Week" discussion about the recent credit rating downgrade by Standard and Poor's Roberts said, 'The problem that we have here is the Constitution of the United States of America which actually does require people to come together from different perspectives" (video follows with transcript and commentary):

By Noel Sheppard | August 7, 2011 | 12:53 PM EDT

As NewsBusters previously reported, former Obama administration car czar Steve Rattner last month called Tea Partiers terrorists on national television.

On Sunday's "This Week," George Will took Rattner on for making such an inflammatory statement (video follows with transcript and commentary):

By Noel Sheppard | August 7, 2011 | 11:53 AM EDT

Want to know just how scared of the Tea Party America's media are?

On Sunday, the Chicago Tribune's Clarence Page published a column entitled "Is The Tea Party Over?":

By Noel Sheppard | August 7, 2011 | 10:19 AM EDT


Joining our growing list of media members willing to flat out lie on national television to advance their political agendas is Arianna Huffington who falsely claimed this week that securities firm JPMorgan warned its clients the debt ceiling agreement "is going to reduce our growth by a point-and-a-half."

Such was dishonestly said during a segment of CNN's "Fareed Zakaria GPS" aired Sunday (video follows with transcript and commentary):