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By Tom Blumer | June 28, 2011 | 9:49 PM EDT

While the vast majority of those in the establishment press doggedly insist on reporting seasonally adjusted numbers in most economic spheres, there is an odd exception: Standard & Poor's Case-Shiller Home Price Indices.

Not that it's completely the press's fault. S&P emphasizes the raw numbers over the seasonally adjusted ones, and for a pretty good reason: The raw numbers represent what's really happening on the ground with home prices. In the current economy, the seasonal calculations can't really be said to reflect typical seasonal patterns. Of course, this logic should apply to other key areas, particularly employment, but we (or maybe it's the reporters) are apparently not mature enough to understand large monthly swings in jobs added or lost, or able to see them in the context of previous years.

Given that the press usually hangs its hat on seasonal numbers, you'd think they'd be more than a little shy about copying S&P's press release, which today described a very small increase as a a "boost" in home prices, which disppeared after seasonal adjustment, as seen below:

By Rusty Weiss | June 28, 2011 | 7:57 PM EDT

Over the course of the last few months, Rep. Keith Ellison, one of two Muslim members of Congress, has been cherry-picking the Pledge of Allegiance in an attempt to portray prominent Republicans as bigoted islamophobes. 

Earlier this year, Ellison responded to the Peter King hearings on the radicalization of American Muslims by saying that conservatives believe in liberty, but are against the “and justice for all.”   In an appearance on MSNBC two weeks ago, he advised Herman Cain to “review that Pledge of Allegiance”, particularly the part proclaiming “liberty and justice for all.”  And more recently, Ellison gave an interview to C-SPAN, in which he ran off a list of supposed differences between himself and Michele Bachmann.  That list included a declaration that he, and apparently only he, “believe(s) in liberty and justice for all.”

One line however, does not an entire pledge make.

We know why Ellison is invoking this specific phrase from the pledge – liberty and justice for all.  It is an attempt to push the progressive agenda of placating radical Muslims.  But it is also important to counter such slander, by examining the motivations behind those that Ellison hopes to marginalize as islamophobic.

By Tom Blumer | June 28, 2011 | 7:06 PM EDT

It looks like someone in the establishment business press might be getting a little touchy about the razzing they continually receive for delivering "unexpectedly" bad economic news.

As captured by Glenn Reynolds at Instapundit and corroborated in this Google News description, Bloomberg's 10:16 a.m. report on consumer sentiment told readers that "Consumer confidence unexpectedly fell in June to a seven-month low, indicating that slowing employment gains are weighing on Americans' outlooks."

At 11:31 a.m. -- to be clear, not influenced by Reynolds's post, which went up shortly after noon -- a sanitized version of the report by Alex Kowalski and Jillian Berman read as follows:

By Scott Whitlock | June 28, 2011 | 6:00 PM EDT

This may not be the endorsement Jon Huntsman wants. MSNBC's Chris Matthews on Tuesday touted the Republcian presidential candidate's apparent acquiescence to a demand he made in an advertisement for Hardball. The journalist was so pleased, he dubbed himself, "the great communicator."

Matthews praised the moderate Republican for answering "the call I made during that promotional ad I was very happy to do when I said the Republican presidential candidates ought to have the courage to stand up and say that Barack Obama is as much an American as they are."

[See video below MP3 audio here.]

By Matt Hadro | June 28, 2011 | 5:50 PM EDT

On Tuesday's American Morning, co-host Kiran Chetry reported that  Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) is "prone to misstatements" and posed this question to her: "Did you mean to make false statements intentionally or were you just misspeaking?"

"PolitiFact.com, which is a Pulitzer Price winning fact-checking web site examined 26 statements that you made and they found only one to be fully true and 18 to be false," Chetry told Bachmann. "Several of them relating to your criticism of President Obama. Did you mean to make false statements intentionally or were you just misspeaking?"

By Matthew Balan | June 28, 2011 | 5:42 PM EDT

ABC, CBS, and NBC all failed to mention former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich's affiliation with the Democratic Party on their Monday evening news broadcasts and the Tuesday morning shows. Blagojevich was convicted by a jury on Monday on 17 outFormer Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich, screen cap from the 28 June 2011 Edition of CBS's The Early Show | NewsBusters.org of 20 charges, mainly related to the attempt to sell the Senate seat of President Obama. Only CBS's Early Show noted his party with a "D" on-screen.

NBC devoted the least amount of time to the breaking news, a total of 1 minute and 50 seconds between NBC Nightly News and the Today Show. Brian Williams actually didn't mention the party of the new felon or his predecessor during his report on Monday, but noted that "Blagojevich will become the fourth Illinois governor in recent memory to go to jail. His predecessor, George Ryan, is still in federal prison, also for corruption." The following morning, news anchor Natalie Morales gave three news briefs on Blagojevich, all about 15 seconds long each.

By Ken Shepherd | June 28, 2011 | 5:20 PM EDT

Last week my colleague Eric Ames addressed the bias and some misstatements of fact in Richard Stengel's recent attack on the Constitution/defense of ObamaCare here.

Today, Aaron Worthing over at Patterico's Pontification's ticked off 13 factual errors in the Time magazine editor's piece and systematically addressed each one.

It's an excellent piece. Here's an excerpt that I think addresses some of Stengel's biggest errors:

By Clay Waters | June 28, 2011 | 5:11 PM EDT

The “Inside the List” column for the New York Times’s Sunday Book Review, compiled by Jennifer Schuessler, discussed Ann Coulter’s latest New York Times bestseller “Demonic” under the subhead “Woman In Black.”

The first paragraph of the Times’ official Topics page for Coulter describes the author as “ultraconservative,” and Schuessler’s Book Review brief is no less loaded:

By Tim Graham | June 28, 2011 | 4:41 PM EDT

Over the weekend, NPR’s On The Media found that the New York Times was so fascinated by self-proclaimed illegal alien activist Jose Antonio Vargas and found his story so compelling, the credibility of the author was not an issue. New York Times Magazine editor-in-chief Hugo Lindgren (that "great magazine head") said all the lying about his citizenship is not an issue for journalists:

That's something that's come up today. You know, people say, you know, you lie about one thing and people can't stop lying if they do that. And I think some of that misses the point. This is not unprecedented in journalism. This is not the first person who's ever told a lie who then goes on to write about it.

By Clay Waters | June 28, 2011 | 4:35 PM EDT

For a paper so eager to wean us off “our addiction to foreign oil,” the New York Times is pretty squeamish when it comes to the actual alternatives. Ian Urbina’s Sunday lead story was the paper's latest attack on the natural gas industry, “Insiders Sound an Alarm Amid a Natural Gas Rush – Productivity of Shale Wells Is a Concern – Investor Flood Spurs Talk of Bubble.” That was followed by another front-page story Monday, “Behind Veneer, Doubt on Future Of Natural Gas.”

Michael Levi at the Council on Foreign Relations has a detailed analysis of the flaws in Urbina’s approach and the apparent gaps in the reporter’s expertise. Some highlights:

By Alex Fitzsimmons | June 28, 2011 | 4:29 PM EDT

ABC and CBS have both recently wielded PolitiFact as a club to bash Congresswoman Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.), yet in the 29 months since President Barack Obama took office – despite 49 "false" ratings in Obama's PolitiFact file – the three broadcast networks have cited the fact-checking website only once to challenge the Democratic commander-in-chief.

ABC host George Stephanopoulos on Tuesday's "Good Morning America" used PolitiFact as an excuse to badger Bachmann about her past statements, while CBS host Bob Schieffer on Sunday's "Face the Nation" pressed the Republican presidential candidate to answer to a spate of PolitiFact judgments against her.

By Ken Shepherd | June 28, 2011 | 4:13 PM EDT

With apologies to King Solomon, as a dog returns to its vomit, so a biased MSNBC anchor repeats his tired talking points.

On the June 14 edition of his eponymous program, conservative New York Daily News columnist S.E. Cupp hit Martin Bashir for marveling at Rep. Michele Bachmann's (R-Minn.) June 13 debate performance, given her history of gaffes.

At the time, Cupp reminded Bashir of President Obama's "corpseman" gaffe and two of Vice President Biden's gaffes. Today, Bashir had Cupp back on to discuss the 2012 Republican presidential primary race and again raised the issue of Bachmann's gaffes. Once again, Cupp defended Bachmann by noting that all politicians make gaffes on the campaign trail.

By Clay Waters | June 28, 2011 | 4:08 PM EDT

New York Times reporter Jeff Zeleny was with Republican Rep. Michele Bachmann in Waterloo, Iowa, at the official launching of her presidential campaign for Tuesday’s “Bachmann Opens Campaign as Expectations Grow.” But Zeleny concluded his mostly balanced story with a reference to Bachmann’s latest in a “string of gaffes” – her mistaken claim that Western movie star John Wayne had been born in Waterloo, Iowa (though his parents met there).

Yet the Times has totally ignored a far more by President Obama, who wrongly claimed in a speech he gave June 23 to the Army's 10th Mountain Division that he had awarded a Medal of Honor to a living soldier. Jared Monti had actually had been killed in Afghanistan in 2006 and had been bestowed the honor posthumously. Obama apologized to the family.

Reporter Jackie Calmes even filed an online report from Fort Drum, in upstate New York, but failed to note the flub.

By Eric Ames | June 28, 2011 | 4:03 PM EDT

The following post was based on a misunderstanding of the conversation described. Please see our retraction here.

Tuesday's Morning Joe treated the conviction of former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich as a relatively minor affair, and gave it little to no coverage save a brief discussion about the supposed injustice of the process. "It's any other day and that's any other news story," said Mika Brzezinski, who appeared annoyed at being asked to cover the story at all. Later, she insisted "We're not going to waste the first block on this."

By Matt Hadro | June 28, 2011 | 2:08 PM EDT

One disgraced former governor hosted another disgraced former governor Monday night to praise New York's same-sex marriage bill. CNN's In the Arena host Eliot Spitzer brought on former New Jersey Gov. Jim McGreevey to discuss the bill in what turned out to be love-fest in honor of McGreevey's pro-gay sentiments.

McGreevey, a Democrat, announced he was gay in 2004 while he was in office as governor of New Jersey. The announcement came as he resigned from office revealing that he had an gay affair with another man while married to his wife.