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By Kyle Drennen | July 1, 2011 | 12:49 PM EDT

While NBC's Today on Thursday characterized President Obama's attacks on congressional Republicans as "feisty," on Friday, correspondent Kelly O'Donnell appeared on the broadcast and declared that "Republicans made it unusually personal" in responding to the White House  criticism.

Despite the President's claim in his Wednesday press conference that his daughters worked harder than GOP members of Congess, O'Donnell focused on Republican mudslinging: "The summer heat must really be getting to them around here with more than the usual frustration in both parties over the debt limit showdown and more personal comments directed to the President from Republicans."  

By Matt Hadro | July 1, 2011 | 12:21 PM EDT

CNN asked Wednesday if a person can follow "both Ayn Rand and Jesus," pulling quotes from both a Democrat and a fellow at the Ayn Rand Center for Individual Rights to answer that Christianity and Rand's philosophy oppose each other. Buried deep within the post on CNN's Belief Blog was the contrary view that Christians can adopt certain tenants of Rand's philosophy while rejecting others contrary to their faith.

The question is popular among Christians at odds with the Republican budget authored by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.), a Catholic, who is a fan of Rand and her defense of capitalism and individualism. The American Values Network (AVN) in particular has tried to make known his endorsement of Rand and pitch it side-by-side with her anti-religious beliefs.

By Noel Sheppard | July 1, 2011 | 11:36 AM EDT

With a month to go before the next supposedly "drop dead date" regarding the nation's debt ceiling, liberal media members are out in force with hysterical claims about the world ending if Congress isn't free to spend more money it doesn't have.

Ever the faithful shill, New York Times columnist Paul Krugman did his part Friday cautioning that any spending cuts at this time "would destroy hundreds of thousands and quite possibly millions of jobs":

By Noel Sheppard | July 1, 2011 | 10:30 AM EDT

It's Fourth of July weekend - how about cheating on your spouse?

For those not thinking about it, a piece to be published in the New York Times Magazine this Sunday marvelously titled "Married, With Infidelities" is recommending it:

By Erin R. Brown | July 1, 2011 | 10:23 AM EDT

There were two candidates on the GOP ticket in 2008, John McCain and Sarah Palin. Both had young daughters involved in the campaign. Both have written books about the experience. Guess which book was celebrated and which was savaged?

The media's character assassination of Sarah Palin knows no bounds, as she's been smeared as everything from "evil" to "unintelligent." But "Palin Derangement Syndrome" is a hereditary disease, and the media have continued their multigenerational malice toward Bristol Palin in reviews of her new memoir, "Not Afraid of Life: My Journey So Far."

(Video after the jump)

By Paul Wilson | July 1, 2011 | 9:30 AM EDT

Hollywood once eschewed making movies that openly advocated atheism. That is no longer the case.

"The Ledge" is the latest in a series of recent Hollywood films that actively promote atheism. Director Matthew Chapman hopes that his movie will be the "'Brokeback Mountain' moment for atheists."

"The Ledge" has a simple plot. An atheist seduces the attractive wife of a Christian fundamentalist. The husband, a crazy fundamentalist, lures the atheist onto a ledge and threatens to kill the wife if the atheist doesn't jump from a ledge at a certain time.


By Matthew Sheffield | July 1, 2011 | 9:27 AM EDT

You don’t have to believe in karma to find the irony in the fact that the Web giant Google is finding itself in the cross hairs of the same pressure groups that it funded back when it was pushing heavily for “network neutrality.”

The latest cause célèbre among this crowd is “search neutrality,” the idea that somehow the government needs to get into the business of Internet search engines.

By Tim Graham | July 1, 2011 | 8:41 AM EDT

Paul Bedard at U.S. News & World Report passed along a new study that suggests that celebrating Independence Day is a Republican-boosting activity. While liberals and Democrats can have a tendency to skip patriotic rituals (or drop "under God" from the Pledge of Allegiance, eh, NBC?), a little patriotism apparently makes one lean to the right:

Democratic political candidates can skip this weekend's July 4th parades. A new Harvard University study finds that July 4th parades energize only Republicans, turn kids into Republicans, and help to boost the GOP turnout of adults on Election Day.

By Matt Cover | July 1, 2011 | 8:29 AM EDT

A video of President Barack Obama filmed in the White House and included in a fundraising e-mail sent to supporters is not legal, two election law experts told

The video was included in an e-mail sent to supporters of President Obama promoting a fundraising drive that offered participants a chance to win an invitation to dinner with Obama and Vice President Joe Biden.

By Mark Finkelstein | July 1, 2011 | 7:30 AM EDT


Jay Carney admits calling MSNBC yesterday to complain about Mark Halperin's crack [that we were first to report] that the President, at his Wednesday press conference, acted like a "d--k."  Did the White House press secretary take the opportunity of his call to pressure the show to bring on more pro-Obama flacks?

The question arises because on today's show, Mika Brzezinski revealed that "we're getting hit a lot lately for not bringing on people who speak on behalf of the White House and really stick up for the President."

By Tim Graham | July 1, 2011 | 6:39 AM EDT

Markos Moulitsas, the founder and publisher of the Daily Kos, demonstrated that he can locate a vast right-wing conspiracy just like the rest of the Kosmonauts. Mark Halperin's suspension, for him, proved once again that Halperin is a right-wing fellow traveler with Joe Scarborough, who's the "real president" of MSNBC:

I think it's wonderful that Halperin betrayed his full feelings about Obama on the air. It's tiresome seeing people pretend that he's some sort of neutral political arbitrer [sic], when he's engaged in a long-running jihad against the truth.

By Brad Wilmouth | July 1, 2011 | 2:15 AM EDT

 On Thursday evening, uniquely among the broadcast network evening newscasts, ABC’s World News featured a report on GOP presidential candidate Michele Bachmann’s recent revelation that her pro-life views were influenced by a miscarriage she once endured. ABC correspondent Sharyn Alfonsi also informed viewers of the Minnesota Congresswoman’s history of giving care to foster children with her husband.

Substitute anchor George Stephanopoulos set up the report:

By Tim Graham | June 30, 2011 | 11:24 PM EDT

On Monday, PBS talk show host Charlie Rose decided to discuss the passage of a "gay marriage" law in New York with two New York Times reporters and a writer for The New Yorker -- not exactly a divided or diverse panel. CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin (also with The New Yorker) predicted to Rose that we're less then ten years out from the Supreme Court proclaiming "gay marriage" must be recognized in all 50 states:

The question I have is, when will the Supreme Court arrest the issue, because I don't think they are in any rush to do it. I think at the end of the day they will say that same-sex marriage is a constitutional right. You can`t have one kind of marriage for straight people and one kind of non-marriage for gay people. But I don't think they are in any rush to do that and I think it will maybe be five years or maybe be ten years, and at that point the whole country will have it.

By Jack Coleman | June 30, 2011 | 6:58 PM EDT

Do as I suggest, not as I claim to eschew.

Those wascally Wepublicans and their corporate-financed efforts to compel voter turnout, Rachel Maddow complained on her MSNBC show Tuesday, before suggesting possible Chinese or Brazilian manipulation of American elections through legalized bribes to unpatriotic conservatives (video after page break) --

By Matt Hadro | June 30, 2011 | 6:44 PM EDT

Tea Party favorite Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) declared her candidacy for president Monday, and CNN provided plenty of snarky commentary with which to welcome her. The network repeatedly took aim at her past gaffes and suggested that she has little chance to win the Republican nomination for president.

In addition, CNN's Anderson Cooper led his regular news cast for two nights in a row touting the congresswoman's "hypocrisy" in championing small government while benefitting from a family farm and her husband's counseling clinic, both of which received federal funds – although Cooper himself admitted the total amount was "relatively small."