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By Mike Bates | April 30, 2011 | 9:48 PM EDT

Economic growth in the first quarter was an abysmal 1.8 percent.  Last week, initial jobless claims increased by 25,000 from the previous week, up to 429,000.  The Federal government borrows $188 million an hour, or over $52,000 a second, just to keep up with President Obama's spending demands.  Despite almost a trillion dollars for Obama's and the Democratic Congress's stimulus, unemployment remains at 8.8 percent.

Amid all these storm clouds, the Obamamaniacs at CNN have found a silver lining.  Anchor T.J. Holmes on CNN Newsroom reported today:

Here is a sign that the economy is getting better, an unexpected sign you didn't think about. Divorce rates in the U.S. are on the rise. It's explained here. In 2000 before the recession, of course, way back before the recession, the divorce rate was 4.0. When hard times started in 2007 the breakup rate dropped to 3.6 percent here. But then last year it fell a bit more, a bit more to 3.5. That was the divorce rate then. So, fewer and fewer people are getting divorced.

By Dave Pierre | April 30, 2011 | 4:49 PM EDT

Can the New York Times' Maureen Dowd address the topic of the Catholic Church without promulgating falsehoods? It doesn't seem like it.

Dowd's recent rant, released on Easter Sunday (Sun. 4/24/11), contains a number of false statements.

By NB Staff | April 30, 2011 | 9:51 AM EDT

For general discussion and debate about politics, the economy, sports, or whatever else tickles your fancy.

By Noel Sheppard | April 30, 2011 | 9:25 AM EDT

You've heard of Birthers and Truthers.

Tea Partier and talk radio host Tony Katz on Thursday, while appearing on MSNBC News Live Contessa Brewer, called media members that blame all criticism of Barack Obama on the color of his skin "Racers" (video follows with transcript and commentary):

By Noel Sheppard | April 30, 2011 | 7:55 AM EDT

If you're not familiar with GRITtv or Laura Flanders, you will be because her far-left, antagonistic, attack dog style is starting to become all the rage to liberal hosts especially on MSNBC.

On Friday, as part of the panel discussion on HBO's "Real Time," Flanders in her own aggressive style impolitely went after fellow guest conservative publisher Andrew Breitbart feeling the need to bring up last year's Shirley Sherrod affair after which she called him a con man (video follows with transcript and commentary):

By Mark Finkelstein | April 30, 2011 | 7:20 AM EDT

Even at MSNBC, which gets crushed of course by Fox News in every prime-time slot, Cenk Uygur manages to come in dead last in ratings among his liberal peers.  

So when Cenk claims that he doesn't want to cover Donald Trump but is forced to do so by The Donald's popularity, the baloney-meter starts screaming. Uygur opened his show last evening with a long segment on Trump, all the while apologizing to his audience for doing so. 

View video after the jump.

By Tim Graham | April 30, 2011 | 6:51 AM EDT

Daily Kos founder Markos Moulitsas was very quick to express delight Wednesday at Barack Obama's birth-certificate release and briefing room outburst against the media. "Sure, it might seem like "giving in" to the enemy -- responding to right-wing hysteria and releasing the long-form birth certificate. But here's why the move is a canny one." It's a loser for Republicans, because the "progressives" never thought Bush was behind 9/11? 

1. It keeps the issue in the news. Even more so, it gives it that much more visibility. And let's face it, this is a huge loser for the GOP. What better way to show how out-of-touch and irrational Republicans are, than to rub this in their face.

2. The media has already treated the birthers harshly, equating them with the truthers (and deservedly so). But while the truthers never got buy in from any progressive of note, the birthers have been fully embraced by top conservative leaders.

By Tim Graham | April 30, 2011 | 6:30 AM EDT

There are different layers of liberal outrage over the demand to see Barack Obama's birth certificate, and leftist radio host Randi Rhodes took it to ridiculous lengths on Thursday. Somehow, these demands "wounded" black Americans in a way the Ku Klux Klan "never aspired to," even if this metaphorical wounding is a much lighter sentence than the death sentences the Klan handed out:

Now that we're done with the birther thing, and we have insulted an entire population of the American people - we have just absolutely wounded, you know, African Americans...we have wounded black Americans...we have wounded the President, we have wounded his family...we've wounded an entire population of the United States of America in a way that I don't think the Ku Klux Klan ever even aspired to, okay.

People are so devastated by what Donald Trump did, and the things that he said, and the racism of the Tea Party, and they've been frustrated for a very long time with whites who refused to accept or acknowledge that the Tea Party had been acting in a racist manner, that they were using covert and overt racism, they were using, uh, you know, things that were right in your face and the basketball reference...and all the other, you know."

By Noel Sheppard | April 29, 2011 | 11:56 PM EDT

Charles Krauthammer on Friday perfectly elucidated the media's hypocrisy concerning their avid defense of Barack Obama against attacks from Donald Trump and the birthers.

As the discussion on PBS's "Inside Washington"  turned to the President finally revealing his birth certificate, and liberals on the panel including the Washington Post's Colby King expressed disgust about how the White House resident was being treated, Krauthammer marvelously replied, "I think it’s somewhat amusing to hear people on the left talking about how awful it is to delegitimize a president when they spent half a decade saying that George Bush stole the election" (video follows with transcript and commentary):

By Tim Graham | April 29, 2011 | 11:46 PM EDT

Leftist radio host and columnist Dave Sirota posted a column Friday headlined "Why The Fat Guy Should Lose His Privilege."  Sirota took the fact that 90 percent of the clients for the commercial "weight-loss industry" are women, while men are apparently most accepting of obesity. In his rush to denounce a sexist double standard, Sirota mangled obvious facts, like claiming Rush Limbaugh is presently a "morbidly obese" man:

In politics, it may be the worst of all: Overweight icons like Rush Limbaugh, Haley Barbour, Newt Gingrich and Chris Christie regularly dominate the headlines as serious leaders, but no woman even vaguely approaching their body mass index would be taken seriously in a similar role. In fact, so powerful is this double standard that America barely flinched when the morbidly obese Limbaugh criticized the svelte Michelle Obama for “not project[ing] the image of women that you might see on the cover of the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue.”

By Clay Waters | April 29, 2011 | 10:30 PM EDT

William Neuman's New York Times story on the latest attack by the food and advertising police, “U.S. Seeks New Limits on Food Ads for Children,” which topped Friday’s Business section, was slanted (as most Times business stories are) against business and in favor of federal regulators.

Will Toucan Sam go the way of Joe Camel?

The federal government proposed sweeping new guidelines on Thursday that could push the food industry to overhaul how it advertises cereal, soda pop, snacks, restaurant meals and other foods to children.

Citing an epidemic of childhood obesity, regulators are taking aim at a range of tactics used to market foods high in sugar, fat or salt to children, including the use of cartoon characters like Toucan Sam, the brightly colored Froot Loops pitchman, who appears in television commercials and online games as well as on cereal boxes.

By Ken Shepherd | April 29, 2011 | 6:17 PM EDT

The pastor who preached the Easter sermon that Barack Obama heard this past Sunday is not another Jeremiah Wright, Time's Amy Sullivan insists in an April 29 blog "Swampland" blog post entitled "Conservatives Go After Another Obama Pastor."

Sullivan was responding to the complaints of conservative talkers Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity, who highlighted some controversial remarks Smith made to a college audience last year:

By Matt Hadro | April 29, 2011 | 4:21 PM EDT
 

Apparently, the Left will never get over John Kerry's loss in the 2004 presidential election. On Thursday's Joy Behar Show, Joy Behar used a discussion of the "birther" claims against Barack Obama to slam what she called the "lies" of the Swift Boat veterans, who challenged Kerry's account of his service in Vietnam.

"Does this treatment remind you of the swift-boating that went on when John Kerry was running? ...These people make up a lie, they continue the lie, they perpetuate the lie, and then people start to believe it. They destroyed Kerry," Behar ranted to a liberal guest, Columbia University professor Marc Lamont Hill.

In smearing the anti-Kerry veterans, Behar is following in the steps of many others in the liberal media. Back in 2008, then-New York Times reporter Deborah Solomon (NYT Magazine, August 3, 2008) berated Boone Pickens for financially backing the group four years earlier: "You help re-elect Bush in '04 when you gave $3 million to the Swift Boat campaign to discredit John Kerry's Vietnam service. Do you regret your involvement?"

By Tom Blumer | April 29, 2011 | 3:23 PM EDT

Yesterday evening (late afternoon West Coast time), Phil Bronstein at the San Francisco Chronicle informed his readers that one of its reporters had been banned by the Obama administration:

The hip, transparent and social media-loving Obama administration is showing its analog roots. And maybe even some hypocrisy highlights.

 

White House officials have banished one of the best political reporters in the country from the approved pool of journalists covering presidential visits to the Bay Area for using now-standard multimedia tools to gather the news.

By Clay Waters | April 29, 2011 | 3:19 PM EDT

The New York Times on Friday finally deigned to review the movie “Atlas Shrugged,” based on the novel by Ayn Rand, a heroine to libertarians and objectivists in particular. New critic Carina Chocano (like the rest of the critics, who weighed in two weeks ago) was scathing on the movie’s flaws and clearly disdained its politics:  “A Utopian Society Made Up of Business Moguls in Fedoras.”

Could anyone have guessed, way back when it was published in 1957, that “Atlas Shrugged,” Ayn Rand’s grandiloquent doorstop of a masterwork, would one day reach the big screen as high-camp comedy? Because stilted prose and silly plotting notwithstanding, Rand’s unrelentingly popular book has exerted a powerful ideological hold on the culture, an influence that has only intensified in recent years with the emergence of the Tea Party. Still, for unintentional yet somehow boring hilarity, the novel can’t touch the cinematic adaptation, which shifts the action to 2016 and presents Rand’s ham-fisted fable of laissez-faire capitalism as something C-Span might make if it ever set out to create a futuristic, proto-libertarian nighttime soap. In the 1980s.