Chris Matthews Tuesday once again showed that his tenuous grasp of reality is getting dangerously weak.
During the final segment of "Hardball," the host unequivocally blamed the 2007 financial crisis and resulting recession on George W. Bush just moments before he said, "Okay, Obama hasn't been able to get us out of it yet, but...there’s no sense blaming one Party or the other" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? -- Matthew 7:4
On a somewhat slow Thursday night, let's have a good chuckle. On his MSNBC show this evening, Cenk Uygur jumped on a poll showing Paul Ryan with a 26% unfavorability rating to declare that America "can't stand" the Wisconsin congressman and that the 26% unfavorable rating is "disastrous."
Lawrence O'Donnell on Tuesday accused Congresswoman Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) of being a socialist.
"The Last Word" host, who has admitted on national television to himself being a socialist, did so by cherry-picking from an article published at the perilously liberal website "The Huffington Post" (video follows with commentary and full transcript at end of post):
In the run-up to the passage of Obamacare in March 2010, Nancy Pelosi infamously told a friendly audience: "We have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it."
Fifteen months later, we still haven't learned everything about a bill which no honest congressperson or senator can claim to have read and fully understood.
Today's "discovery" is that some couples in their early 60s earning up to $64,000 a year can qualify for Medicaid. As has become establishment press custom since Obamacare's passage, Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar at the Associated Press reports on the "anomaly," without getting to its root cause, namely that nobody who voted for the 2000-page legislation knew it was there:
Top House Democrats are going on the offensive against business consulting firm McKinsey & Company over a study the company conducted that found that significant numbers of employers would stop offering health insurance due to Obamacare’s mandates.
The McKinsey study found that 30 percent of employers would “definitely or probably” stop offering their employees health insurance due to Obamacare’s minimum coverage mandate for employers with 50 or more employees.
Newsweek's Evan Thomas on Friday tried to float the typical media meme that neither Party is doing anything to solve our nation's budget crisis.
Unfortunately for him, fellow "Inside Washington" panelist Charles Krauthammer accurately noted that the Republicans have offered a proposal to cut $6.6 trillion in the next ten years, "but the Democrats have done nothing except to demagogue the plan and to destroy it" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
CBS hounded four Republicans from the left during a town hall on the economy which aired on Tuesday's Early Show. Bob Schieffer, Erica Hill, and Rebecca Jarvis pressed Reps. Paul Ryan and Allen West, Senator Tom Coburn, and South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley to consider tax hikes to deal with the deficit. Schieffer also specifically accused the three members of Congress of "doing nothing" to fix the economy.
The two online questions which Jarvis took from viewers touted Democratic talking points about deficits under former President George W. Bush and how cutting the federal budget would lead to an increase in the unemployment rate, due to the laying off of federal employees. She also vigorously pursued both Rep. Ryan and Rep. West. about the issue of jobs. In the first instance, the CBS business correspondent used an earlier answer from Haley, which emphasized the issue, to actually accuse the greater Republican Party of not paying enough attention to this issue, as well with the overall issue of the economy:
CNN's Eliot Spitzer arrogantly lectured about the benefits of Keynesian economics Sunday while accusing fellow panelists on "Fareed Zakaria GPS" of not knowing what they were talking about because they weren't business owners.
This led British historian Andrew Roberts to point out that President Obama's administration are mostly academics, and Ann Coulter to ask Spitzer, "What business have you ran? You’re a governor" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Author Ann Coulter sparred with Joy Behar on Reaganomics on Wednesday's episode of The View. "How are you going to solve it if you don't have any revenue coming in?" asked Joy Behar of the conservative commentator, who is currently promoting her latest book, Demonic. "When Reagan cut taxes, each year, as the taxes went down, revenue to the treasury went up" Coulter responded.
As The View's most ardent leftist, Behar went on to try to blame bad loans and the housing crisis on Republicans. Coulter merely rebutted with the facts. "You cannot blame the Republicans on that" said Coulter. "The big banks then bundled them to the mortgage-backed securities, they got spread out into everyone's portfolio. So it was like a poison in the economy."
Dennis Cauchon at USA Today has been one of a very few establishment press reporters willing to expose federal workers' disproportionate pay and benefits (previous examples here and here) as well as Uncle Sam's precariously dangerous financial situation.
Cauchon has two USAT items today on the latter topic (HT to NB commenter Gary Hall): "U.S. funding for future promises lags by trillions," which reports that federal obligations totaled $61.6 trillion as of September 2010, a $5.3 trillion increase from a year earlier, and "Government's Mountain of Debt," which itemizes those obligations by major source.
Unsurprisingly, 75% of federal obligations, or a combined $46.2 trillion (actually more, which will be seen at the end of this post), relate to Social Security and Medicare, which no one but a few deluded leftists believe (or pretend to believe) are sustainable in their current form. Unfortunately, at the end of his first story, Cauchon quoted one of them, Michael Lind, whom the USAT reporter described as "policy director at the liberal New America Foundation's economic growth program," who said the following:
On Friday, Cass Sunstein, the White House's 56 year-old Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (pictured at right), attempted to disavow a 42-page paper he wrote called "Lives, Life-Years, and Willingness to Pay," which recommended that the government reduce resources directed at benefitting the elderly in favor of increasing what goes to young people, because young people have more years of life ahead of them. His statement, as carried at CNS News:
“I’m a lot older now than the author with my name was, and I’m not sure what I think about what that young man wrote,” he said. “Things written as an academic are not a legitimate part of what we do as a government official. So I am not focusing on sentences that a young Cass Sunstein wrote years ago.
So, dear readers, before you go to the rest of this post, guess how "young" Sunstein was when he engaged in his de facto "death panels" advocacy.
In his newest CNN.com op-ed titled "Don't Doom GOP's Chance to Win in 2012," David Frum clearly outlines the Republican Party's best chance for victory – if they don't come off as "Medicare-annihilating racist maniacs." He then goes about making the case that Republicans are doing just that.
"It is Tea Party conservatism itself that is Obama's last, best hope for a second term," Frum boldly concludes in a stinging indictment of the Tea Party.
He claims that the Republicans' refusal to raise the debt ceiling unless President Obama agrees to the Ryan budget plan is akin to the "militant wing" of the party mounting a coup and dragging the GOP to defeat in 2012.
"I am fairly certain that when Paul Ryan first decided to publicly share his admiration of Ayn Rand, he could not have imagined it would lead to him speed-walking to his SUV to avoid a young Catholic trying to give him a Bible and telling him to pay more attention to the Gospel of Luke," Time's Amy Sullivan snarked in a June 3 Swampland blog post.
New York Times columnist Paul Krugman demonstrated perfectly Friday evening the double-talk required from America's left to convince the public Medicare is fine despite recent warnings by its Trustees that it will go bankrupt in thirteen years without major changes.
In his blog posting at the Times website, the Nobel laureate insisted the senior health insurance program "is sustainable in its current form" - as long as changes are made to what it covers, that is:
MSNBC's Chris Matthews on Thursday got a much-needed economics lesson from CNBC's Joe Kernen.
In the midst of a discussion about the economy and how it's going to impact the 2012 elections, the "Hardball" host bragged about having studied economics in grad school leading Kernen to marvelously ask, "You studied economics?" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
It never ceases to amaze me what people on MSNBC are willing to say while cameras are rolling.
On Wednesday, the perilously liberal Cenk Uygur - with a straight face no less! - told Congressman Brian Bilbray (R-Calif.) in the midst of a budget discussion, "I'm actually a fiscal conservative" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
On Monday, New York Times reporter Raymond Hernandez profiled Democrat Kathy Hochul, the winner of the recent special congressional election to fill a seat from a Republican district in New York state, in "Her Inheritance: An Eagerness to Serve."
Praising the Democrat in personal terms the Times rarely if ever uses when discussing a local Republican like New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, Hernandez hit every Lincolnesque cliche in the "devout Roman Catholic" Hochul’s humble family background, which he painted as a challenge overcome by the candidate.
A few months before Kathy Hochul was born, her family was living in a 31-by-8-foot trailer not far from the hulking Bethlehem Steel plant near Buffalo. When things got a little better, they moved to the second-floor flat of a home in working-class Woodlawn.
File this one under: Imagine If The Partisan Tables Were Turned.
On her MSNBC show this evening, Rachel Maddow repeatedly mocked Republican Senate leader Mitch McConnell as "little Mitch, the rodeo queen."
Maddow was miffed over McConnell's arranging a Senate vote on the raising of the debt ceiling, and by extension the Republican position on Medicare reform. And so, for about ten--interminable--minutes, Maddow beat into the ground a labored metaphor, somehow analogizing McConnell to the cowgirls in Utah who were forced to compete on stick ponies because the real horses had been sidelined by illness.
It’s not something the Times does after Republican wins in special or off-year elections - those victories are typically downgraded as unimportant and atypical, like the Times treated the 2009 G.O.P. wins in governors’s races in Virginia and New Jersey, which turned out to be accurate harbingers of electoral success in 2010.
On Friday, Newsweek's Evan Thomas said the recent special election in New York's 26th Congressional district proves "demagoguing works" and that former President Bill Clinton is a hypocrite when it comes to Medicare reform.
"Inside Washington" co-panelist Charles Krauthammer agreed saying that President Obama is also a hypocrite on this issue, and that "between now and at least until Election Day, Democrats will do absolutely nothing on entitlements except demagogue it" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Appearing on Friday's NBC Today, Meet the Press host David Gregory largely dismissed the possibility of Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan entering the 2012 presidential race: "He's got some of his own problems in terms of being the intellectual force behind Medicare reform that is actually hurting the Republican Party."
While Gregory noted that Ryan "didn't close the door" to a potential run, he played up the idea that reforming Medicare would be a political loser in the campaign: "...as they [Republicans] found out in New York-26, in that upstate New York race, that this is an issue that Democrats are going to be able to use against the Republicans if they don't change their message about how Medicare's going to be changed."
Steve Israel had his talking points, and he was sticking to them. Republicans want to "end Medicare" in order to give tax cuts to the big oil companies. On Morning, Joe Scarborough repeatedly called out Israel, head of the Dem congressional campaign committee, on his demagoguery. Not that it stopped the Dem congressman from New York from repeating his rap.
For good measure, Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett appeared later and claimed that Medicare could be maintained without cutting a penny of benefits to seniors merely by finding various "efficiencies" in the program. Waste, fraud and abuse ride again!
Congressional Democrats pressed for a vote on the Ryan plan yesterday, and it went down to defeat 57-40, with five Senate Republicans opposing it along with the Democrats.
The House Republican Medicare plan would convert it into a subsidized program for the private insurance market. When they proposed it last month as the centerpiece of their budget plan, Republicans were confident that the wind of budget politics was at their backs.