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By Matthew Philbin | February 28, 2011 | 10:25 AM EST

You just knew Hollywood couldn't get through an Oscars broadcast without subjecting viewers to self-important statements of left-wing politics. War, AIDS, gay marriage, global warming - pick a liberal hobby horse and chances are an entertainer used the Academy Awards to give America his or her opinion on it.

This year, the cause du jour was class warfare, as reflected in shills for organized labor and a jab at bankers. With public sector unions protesting in Wisconsin and other states where governors are trying to address huge budget shortfalls, a couple of recipients couldn't resist adding their two cents.

Video below the fold.

By Matthew Balan | February 28, 2011 | 10:00 AM EST

CNN's Gloria Borger ripped the 87 new Republicans in the House of Representatives in a Thursday commentary on for their "arrogance of absolute conviction" in wanting to cut the budget. Borger first labeled this attachment to principle "dangerous," and continued that the "problem" with the freshmen representatives and their allies at the state level was "their conviction that compromise is bad."

The senior political analyst set the tone right away with the title of piece, "The arrogance of the new budget cutters." After noting that "we said we wanted budget cutters, so that's what we have" and the apparent "downright frenzy of rectitude in Washington," Borger stated that those "most convinced of their task are the 87 House Republican newcomers." She shot her first "arrogant" labeled at the freshmen after complimenting them a bit:

By NB Staff | February 28, 2011 | 9:09 AM EST

The two think tanks, leaders in the conservative and libertarian movements, produced a short video recently examining some of the claims made by pro-union demonstrators and other public employee union backers. Among the claims they take on: public sector workers don't make significantly more than their private sector counterparts, collective bargianing is "not about money," and attempts to rein in public employee unions are simply "union busting" measures.

Check out the video below the break.

By Tim Graham | February 28, 2011 | 8:54 AM EST

In his interview with Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker on Sunday, NBC Meet the Press host David Gregory not only used a radical leftist blogger's "crank call" of Walker as an act of journalism, worthy of respect, he suggested that the leftist exposed Walker as "more of an ideologue than someone who wants to solve a serious problem." Doesn't that phrase perfectly describe Ian Murphy, the prank caller?

Can anyone imagine Gregory putting on Planned Parenthood boss Cecile Richards and playing back tape from the Live Action video stings and insisting that she's more of an ideologue than a problem-solver? The fairer question is if David Gregory is more of an ideologue than a problem-solver. Here's how Gregory insisted his liberal team's prank was respectable yesterday:

By Mark Finkelstein | February 28, 2011 | 8:01 AM EST

Shades of bitter-clingers!

Chuck Todd has developed an interesting device to delegitimize support for Gov. Scott Walker, depicting his backers as uneducated, frustrated, blue-collar people who are willing to "lash out at government workers."

Yup, there's no respectable basis to support Walker and his call for reforms on a collective bargaining system that has nearly wrecked Wisconsin and many other states.  No, there's just the irrational reaction of the embittered, ignorant masses.

Todd offered his analysis on today's Morning Joe in explaining that the Obama administration is backing off a bold stand on Wisconsin, given its swing-state status.

View video after the jump.

By Brad Wilmouth | February 28, 2011 | 7:29 AM EST

 On Sunday’s NBC Nightly News, a report filed by correspondent Kevin Tibbles mislabeled the Democratic Mayor of Providence, Rhode Island, Angel Taveras, as a Republican during the piece which recounted that the city’s school board had fired all its teachers with the intent to hire back some of them to help solve the city’s budget problems.

Anchor Lester Holt briefly referred to protesters in Madison, Wisconsin, as he introduced the report:

In Madison, Wisconsin, protesters who’ve camped out at the state capitol for more than a week were under orders to clean up and get out today, meaning remove their sleeping bags, their signs, and themselves. Tonight, hundreds have done so. Wisconsin is one of many states public employees find themselves under fire, and there’s one profession getting hit surprisingly hard as NBC's Kevin Tibbles reports.

After a clip of Providence Teachers Union President Steve Smith complaining about the city’s action, Tibbles moved to the soundbite of Mayor Taveras that had him misidentified as a Republican:

By Tim Graham | February 28, 2011 | 6:55 AM EST

Sunday's Washington Post magazine recommended  in its "Going Out Guide" that people catch "The Insider" when it shows at the Newseum as part of the "Reel Journalism" series with Nick Clooney, father of George Clooney and failed Democratic candidate for Congress. The added "bonus" is Mr. Phony Documents, Dan Rather:

When Jeffrey Wigand blew the whistle on his former big-tobacco bosses on 60 Minutes, he paved the way for major controversy and, eventually, this 1999 Academy Award-nominated film based on that controversy. The screening of the Russell Crowe/Al Pacino drama, part of Nick Clooney's ongoing series on journalism, will be followed by a Q&A between Clooney and former CBS newsman Dan Rather. We trust Rather will have a thing or two to say about CBS handles dicey news stories.

That's really polite in negotiating around the anchor's disgrace, like suggesting Pee Wee Herman "will have a thing or two to say" if he showed up at a pornographer's convention.

By Brent Baker | February 28, 2011 | 1:56 AM EST

Catching up with a Thursday night appearance by Senator Rand Paul to plug his new book, Paul’s segment on the Late Show exposed David Letterman as an arrogantly ill-informed ally of Wisconsin’s public employee unions: “Why don't we just raise the taxes and let these folks have their collective bargaining, have their union representation and go back to their jobs? Raise the taxes on the wealthy.”

When Paul tried to educate Letterman about how a small percent of the wealthy pay far more than their fair share, Letterman was an oblivious student as he baselessly countered: “I think there's something wrong with those numbers. I don't know what it is exactly, but I'm pretty sure there's something wrong with them.”

Paul had outlined his wish to reduce government spending, prompting Letterman to retort: “What would be so wrong then in terms of leaving the public sector alone and reducing tax benefits for the wealthy and large corporations? Why couldn't you make up your money that way?” (Audio: MP3 clip)

By Tom Blumer | February 27, 2011 | 9:39 PM EST

Oregon residents and news followers nationwide can be forgiven for shaking their heads over the Associated Press's latest item on the misadventures of Congressman David Wu. All of a sudden he's apparently not a Democrat -- well, at least he's not identified as such by the wire service's Jonathan J. Cooper.

Wu has gained a degree of infamy over his erratic behavior (to be described shortly for those unfamiliar with the story) leading up to his reelection in 2010.

What's odd about Cooper's failure to tag Wu as a Democrat in his latest report is that he and the AP have done so in several previous dispatches:

By Brad Wilmouth | February 27, 2011 | 8:17 PM EST

  As the mainstream media have reported on the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood’s beliefs, failing to pick up on contradictory claims by its leaders that the Islamist group opposes terrorism, also ignored was the role that the Muslim Brotherhood has long played in fomenting anti-Jew hatred in the Middle East. After Nazi Germany financed and helped build up the previously struggling Brotherhood in the 1930s and 1940s, the group disseminated anti-Jew propaganda and inspired the kind of persecution that sent almost a million Jewish refugees fleeing violence, confiscation of property, and expulsion in Muslim countries between the 1940s and the 1970s. Some even estimate that the land confiscated from Jewish residents in Muslim countries amounts to four times or even five times the total area of the state of Israel. A number of Muslim countries saw their Jewish populations almost completely erased, including Egypt where the number dwindled from about 100,000 Jews to only a couple of hundred.

Even somewhat recently, Brotherhood leaders have made such incendiary statements as praising Adolf Hitler to declaring that Muslims should stop fighting each other and fight against Israel instead. As previously documented by NewsBusters, an interview on CNN's Parker-Spitzer helped reveal the tendency of Muslim Brotherhood leaders to twist the meaning of words, as one leader claimed that the group opposes terrorism and violence but then suggested that Palestinian militants are not engaged in terrorism against Israel but instead "resistance," which he rationalized. He also refused to give a straight answer on whether the group would support adherence to Egypt’s treaty with Israel.

But on the January 31 NBC Nightly News, not picking up on Muslim Brotherhood wordplay, correspondent Richard Engel claimed, "The Muslim Brotherhood denounces terrorism, but supports Islamic law, is anti-Israel, and opposes U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East."

By Dave Pierre | February 27, 2011 | 7:57 PM EST

"It seems long past time for reputable news sites to clamp down on the gutter talk."

That is James Rainey, the "On the Media" critic at the Los Angeles Times, fretting in an article today (Sun., 2/27/11) about the tone of readers' comments that are posted on news web sites.

If Rainey wants to "clamp down on the gutter talk" by readers, he needs to take a closer look at his own employer's site,

By Tim Graham | February 27, 2011 | 5:09 PM EST

Almost the entire media skipped this chilling honor-killing verdict from Arizona on Tuesday, from Reuters: "An Arizona jury on Tuesday found an Iraqi immigrant guilty of second-degree murder for running down his daughter with a Jeep because she had become too Westernized." Faleh Almaleki killed his daughter Noor in October 2009 because she spurned his arranged marriage and was living with her boyfriend. Apparently, to report this is to be "Islamophobic."

NPR skipped Almaleki, but they noted the verdict in another horrific killing on Monday night's All Things Considered: Aasiya Hassan was beheaded by her husband Mozzamil in 2009 as the two headed a Buffalo television project designed to create better understanding about Muslims. NPR reporter Dina Temple-Raston's objective was to deny this crime was about Islam. Instead, she said, it was simply about domestic violence.

By Noel Sheppard | February 27, 2011 | 4:12 PM EST

Newsweek's Eleanor Clift on Friday amazingly asked, "Since when does Scott Walker represent 'the people'?"

Such happened during a heated discussion on PBS's "The McLaughlin Group" about the goings-on in Wisconsin (video follows with transcript and commentary):

By Brent Baker | February 27, 2011 | 3:02 PM EST

CBS’s Bob Schieffer hit Republican New Jersey Governor Chris Christie from the left on Sunday’s Face the Nation, claiming he has “demonized” teachers and urging him to give some “straight talk” about the necessity to raise taxes.

After asking if he thinks “Governor Walker out there in Wisconsin has gone too far?” in trying to end collective bargaining, Schieffer ludicrously asserted “everybody in this country on all sides of this thinks we need education reform,” but he wanted to know if Christie realized his stance has “demonized teachers and will raise questions in young people's minds as to whether they want to go into the profession?”

“Banal Bob” soon implored Christie with his standard plea: “You have a reputation as a straight talker, I think. Do you believe that the budgetary problems across this country can be resolved without raising taxes?”

By Noel Sheppard | February 27, 2011 | 2:28 PM EST

University of Virginia media professor Siva Vaidhyanathan on Sunday said the Huffington Post is a bigger threat to journalism than Google.

Such occurred during a discussion about the internet behemoth on CNN's "Reliable Sources" (video follows with transcript and commentary):