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By Clay Waters | March 22, 2012 | 10:01 AM EDT

In his latest "Economic Scene" column for Wednesday's New York Times, "Inequality Undermines Democracy," Eduardo Porter seemed puzzled by why Americans aren't into class warfare.

Porter, a former economics reporter for the Times, fretted America was turning into a "hereditary plutocracy" and put in another plug for the lefties of Occupy Wall Street.

By NB Staff | March 22, 2012 | 9:23 AM EDT

The blog posting that was originally at this URL has been retracted. We misinterpreted comments made by Mika Brzezinski and regret the error.

By NB Staff | March 22, 2012 | 9:22 AM EDT

GOP frontrunner Mitt Romney's campaign strategy is in focus with two stories highlighting it. The first is a remark that's now become infamous by an adviser named Eric Fehrnstrom who compared Romney to the children's toy Etch-a-Sketch, stating that in the general election, Romney would become a completely new candidate and not necessarily the conservative he's presented himself as. While trying to draw in centrists is something that almost every campaign tries to do after getting through the primaries, Fehrnstrom's remarks were so blatant that they've upset many.

Speaking of Romney's general election strategy (should he indeed win the nomination), National Review's Jim Geraghty argues that the main point to it will be Romney calling President Obama in over his head as an easier way of helping people who had voted for the president in 2008 reverse their choice this time. Rather than telling such voters they're stupid, the argument goes, they should be told that Obama has had his chance but just hasn't been up to snuff.

By Tim Graham | March 22, 2012 | 8:44 AM EDT

Washington Post columnist David Ignatius returned to his scoop last week that American-born al-Qaeda adviser Adam Gadahn counseled Osama bin Laden about how to handle an anniversary video for the 10th anniversary of 9/11. "Gadahn hated Fox News (“falls into the abyss”); he liked MSNBC but complained about the firing of Keith Olbermann." So much for "leaning forward."

Gadahn "had mixed feelings about CNN (better in Arabic than in English) and made flattering comments about CBS and ABC. Basically, he wanted to play them all off to al-Qaeda’s best advantage. He also mentioned print journalists, most prominently Robert Fisk of The Independent of Britain," a favorite of America-hating leftists. He went into greater detail:

By Tim Graham | March 22, 2012 | 8:17 AM EDT

Washington Post TV writer Lisa de Moraes broke out the anti-redneck sarcasm in reporting when GSN (formerly the Game Show Network) announced a new show called "The American Bible Challenge." It was somehow mandatory for her to quip, "Can't wait for the stoning-of-adulteresses question."

She began, "GSN announced Wednesday that it had signed Mitt Romney’s new BFF, Jeff Foxworthy," to host the show. She also listed how Foxworthy recently campaigned for Romney in Alabama and Mississippi.

By Brad Wilmouth | March 22, 2012 | 8:13 AM EDT

On Wednesday's NBC Nightly News, correspondent Chuck Todd filed a report in which he recounted verbal "flubs" of the Romney campaign, but, as he showed brief clips of past Romney statements, he neglected to provide the full context that would have made the clips seem less embarrassing.

Anchor Brian Williams introduced the report:

By Noel Sheppard | March 22, 2012 | 2:11 AM EDT

As NewsBusters reported last Friday, the producers of the hit show American Idol warned contestant Colton Dixon to tone down his overtly Christian references if he wanted to win the competition.

Dixon clearly didn't heed their advice, for after his incredible performance of Billy Joel's "Piano Man" Wednesday, he told host Ryan Seacrest, "I’ve been praying before this whole thing because tonight was a big moment for me, and I was just collecting myself and saying, 'God, use me.' I want Him to shine through first and foremost." (Video follows with commentary.)

By Tom Blumer | March 21, 2012 | 11:54 PM EDT

You've got to admire the determination of Derek Kravitz at the Associated Press, aka the Administration's Press, to find lemonade among the lemons known as the monthly new-home construction statistics from the Census Bureau. Why, he was even able to find a guy who said that "housing permits-not the starts" are more relevant in gauging the health of the market. Did it ever occur to these guys that builders might be piling up permits in the hope that economic conditions will change for the better for real once it's clear that the country will have new leadership (which could conceivably happen even before the November general elections)?

Here are the first seven paragraphs from Kravitz's report, followed by a fuller rundown of the relevant stats (bolds are mine):

By Dave Pierre | March 21, 2012 | 10:46 PM EDT

The media are falling over themselves to relay a salacious report that the Catholic Church in the Netherlands may have surgically castrated "as many as 10 young men" over a half a century ago, in the 1950's.

Perpetual Catholic bashers such as the New York Times, NPR, and the Boston Globe are having a field day trumpeting the tale.

The message from these outlets is clear: "The Catholic Church is bad, bad, bad. The news gets worse every day!"

A closer examination of the facts, however, reveals that there is a lot more to this story than meets the eye.

By Jack Coleman | March 21, 2012 | 6:40 PM EDT

Back on Feb. 7, MSNBC's Rachel Maddow appeared on the "Today" show to talk with Matt Lauer about criticism of the new Obamacare rule mandating health insurance coverage of abortion-inducing drugs, sterilizations and contraception.

"Is there traction to this?" Lauer asked. "Is this an issue that's going to last well into the election or the campaign or is this going to be something that's going to fizzle out?" (video after page break)

By Noel Sheppard | March 21, 2012 | 5:13 PM EDT

"I appreciate that you are correctly fact-checking the Republican claims."

MSNBC's Andrea Mitchell actually said this to Obama Interior Secretary Ken Salazar Wednesday in a discussion about oil and gas prices (video follows with transcript and commentary):

By Matt Hadro | March 21, 2012 | 4:40 PM EDT

Liberal comedian John Fugelsang has appeared for three straight days on CNN's Starting Point as a panel member. Although simply listed as a "political comedian," Fugelsang has offered some outrageous liberal commentary during his time as a CNN guest.

For instance, on Wednesday morning he cracked a joke about Rick Santorum being a "homophobe." He previously called Arizona Governor Jan Brewer (R) a "rude lunatic" and ridiculed Catholics who follow their church's teaching on birth control.

By Ken Shepherd | March 21, 2012 | 4:33 PM EDT

CBS's Mark Knoller reported Monday evening at that "The National Debt has now increased more during President Obama's three years and two months in office than it did during 8 years of the George W. Bush presidency." "The Debt rose $4.899 trillion during the two terms of the Bush presidency. It has now gone up $4.939 trillion since President Obama took office," the veteran White House correspondent noted.

But for all their professed obsession with all things inside the Beltway, Politico failed has so far failed to cover the story (h/t email tipster James Harper). Searches of the Politico website for "national debt" or "Bureau of Public Debt" between March 19 and today yield no hits. By contrast, when then-President-elect Obama was gearing up to take office, Politico was certain to skewer Bush for leaving him a massive national debt.

By Clay Waters | March 21, 2012 | 4:25 PM EDT

What did French president Nicolas Sarkozy ever do to the New York Times to incur such outsized wrath?

In a line of attack reminiscent of the Times's sordid attempt to link the shooting of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords to the conservative movement, Paris bureau chief Steven Erlanger on Wednesday used the killings at a Jewish school in France ("Killings Could Stall Elections' Nationalist Turn") to suggest Sarkozy's tough-on-immigration re-election campaign rhetoric could be contributing to a violent anti-immigrant mood in France. (The gunman, whose identity was unknown at the time of filing, is apparently an Islamic extremist who trained with Al Qaeda.)

By Scott Whitlock | March 21, 2012 | 3:58 PM EDT

MSNBC can't even keep liberal politics out of sports. Nation sports editor Dave Zirin appeared on the cable network, Wednesday, to hyperventilate over the announcement that Tim Tebow has been traded to the New York Jets. Zirin berated, "...There are a lot of LGBT people that live in New York City who are also football fans and they might want to know why the new, possibly, starting quarterback for the New York Jets wants them to move backwards 30 or 40 years."

Why does Tebow want to set gays back 40 years? Because he once did a very mild pro-life commercial for Focus on the Family? Completely going off on a tangent, Zirin whined, "Now, I don't want to shock you, Tamron, but there are a lot of women in New York who use birth control." [See video below. MP3 audio here.]