NewsBusters reported Wednesday that MSNBC's Martin Bashir disgracefully accused Republicans of using the acronym "IRS" as the latest racist dog whistle in their "war against the black man in the White House."
It turns out that Bashir used a selectively edited quote of former Reagan aide Lee Atwater to make his pathetic case.
As MSNBC's Al Sharpton hosted a panel on Wednesday's PoliticsNation to discuss Minnesota Republican Rep. Michele Bachmann's retirement, MSNBC analyst Karen Finney claimed that Bachmann never had an idea "that wasn't about hate or wasn't about being against something," while MSNBC analyst and former Pennsylvania Democratic Governor Ed Rendell similarly charged that historians will put her "in a group of people during this era who were just haters, who breeded hate and discontent."
After Sharpton introduced the panel by asking how history would treat Bachmann, Rendell replied:
On the Tuesday, May 14, All In show, Chris Hayes linked former President Ronald Reagan to a former Guatemalan dictator convicted of genocide as the MSNBC host seemed to suggest that the story was as worthy of attention as Benghazi and ended up sarcastically challenging Fox News to give attention to it.
After playing a clip of Reagan from 1982 praising the then-ruler of Guatemala, Hayes continued:
Nearly forgotten article from GQ, late '80s, its subject lost to memory but one detail that stuck -- the writer mentioned that he took part in a weekly touch football game in Central Park and Geraldo Rivera was another player.
Rivera, he claimed, was the type of competitor who jumped to catch a pass when it wasn't necessary. You know that guy, right? Anthony Weiner, to cite an obvious example. Decades later, Rivera is still engaging in this type of thing, most often over the airwaves. (Audio clip after page break)
That month-long hiatus enjoyed by Ed Schultz since MSNBC put "The Ed Show" on hold has made him unusually perceptive, if only momentarily.
On his radio show Friday, Schultz made a suggestion about handling the crisis on the Korean peninsula that will have many liberals spitting up their decaffeinated double lattes. (Audio clip after page break)
Legendary British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher has passed away, and given that she was a conservative, PBS can’t let her go without finding some way to criticize her. On Tuesday evening’s PBS NewsHour, Time Magazine’s Rana Foroohar was brought on to discuss Thatcher’s legacy. Why Foroohar? Well, according to anchor Gwen Ifill, not only does she cover economics and business, she also lived in Britain for nine years.
Foroohar got right to work, describing Thatcher as a “very divisive character” and a “very, very polarizing figure.” Ifill asked her if there are presently any heirs to Thatcher’s world view, and Foroohar responded that Thatcher’s heirs reside in the developing world and emerging markets. These countries are at a stage where Thatcher’s ideas of privatization and free markets can help them, according to Foroohar.
The legendary British prime minister Margaret Thatcher has died, and the national media tried to pay their respects, not only for breaking Britain’s “glass ceiling” with a “bruising” political style, but for transforming Britain and helping wind down the Cold War.
Still, Thatcher was a conservative and one of Ronald Reagan’s staunchest friends in the world, so you can be sure these journalists were Thatcher-bashers when she was in power. Some of them were American anchors and reporters.
On Monday's All In show on MSNBC, host Chris Hayes praised Britain's "beloved" national health care program as possibly "one of the great hallmarks of western social democracy," as he admitted to delivering criticism from a liberal point of view of former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher's administration.
During a panel discussion on Tuesday's NBC Today about a new survey on how Americans view the 1980s, co-host Willie Geist noted an interesting political finding: "If a presidential election were held today, according to this survey, 58% would vote for Ronald Reagan over President Barack Obama." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
Weatherman Al Roker couldn't let that data be reported without putting his own spin on it: "But the interesting thing is a lot of people probably – I mean Ronald Reagan probably would be seen almost liberally today as opposed to being a conservative. I mean, he did a lot of great things. But, I mean, things have shifted." Geist agreed: "Relative to what you see now, absolutely."
The New York Timeskeeps harping on how the sequester-fueled budger cuts may make flying more dangerous, led by reporter Matthew Wald. On February 22 Wald warned "Airlines and airports across the country are preparing for across-the-board federal budget cuts due to hit next week as if they were a hurricane, although with even less certainty about how many flights they will have to cancel and how many passengers will be stranded."
The Federal Aviation Administration said Friday that it would delay closing control towers at 149 airports until June to allow for safety analyses and “to attempt to resolve multiple legal challenges.”
The closings had been planned as part of a $637 million spending reduction at the agency required under the across-the-board budget cuts known as the sequester.
CNN joined the New York Times in hyping Ronald Reagan's liberal activist daughter saying her father would have approved of same-sex marriage. Thursday's Starting Point devoted a whole segment to Patti Davis' claims and hosted her openly-gay friend who gave credence to her argument.
"Patti said she never spoke to her father about gay marriage," reported anchor John Berman. Nevertheless, CNN deemed the post-mortem claims of Regan's liberal activist daughter, who dropped her last name while in college and carved her own liberal path, newsworthy. [Video below the break. Audio here.]
Two years ago today, I chronicled wire service reports which appeared shortly after John Hinckley's unsuccessful attempt to assassinate President Ronald Reagan on March 30, 1981 reporting that schoolchildren in many parts of the country cheered when they heard that he had been shot.
At the time, I suggested that school teachers and administrators who were appalled at the reactions might have been protesting a bit too much. Today, I located a 2004 item at National Review by Stanley Kurtz about another group which was happy to hear about the assassination attempt. The left's hypocrisy about "civility" -- and for that matter, basic human decency -- clearly goes way, way back:
So much of liberalism hinges on the willingness of liberals to engage in collective amnesia. Fortunately, many conservatives prefer to remember.
Ever since the sequester's cuts took effect, Ed Schultz has railed about their impact to the economy, particularly air travel. Since he frequently flies his own plane from Minnesota to work in New York City and to a fishing lodge he bought in Canada (did I mention how Schultz often urges others to "Buy American"?) , Schultz fancies himself an expert on aviation. (audio clip after page break)
Another episode airs tonight of FX’s The Americans. Last week, the historic drama set in 1981, portrayed a successful KGB effort to discredit a Polish priest, who is leading an anti-Soviet liberation movement, by smearing him as a rapist during his visit to New York City. (“The Reagan administration doesn’t want a rapist leading the movement to push the Soviets out of Poland.”)
The March 13 installment of the series also featured an actual real-life clip of President Ronald Reagan hailing the people of Poland: “We, the people of the free world, stand as one with our Polish brothers and sisters.”
During an interview with former Florida Governor Jeb Bush for NBC's online Meet the Press Press Pass, which is also aired by some NBC-owned stations following Meet the Press on Sundays, moderator David Gregory referenced Bush being at the Reagan Presidential Library and employed the tired liberal talking point that Ronald Reagan would be too moderate for the modern GOP: "...the president you speak of and so many conservatives do, raised taxes, was for immigration reform, that a lot of modern-day conservatives would – would find quite distasteful. Could he exist? Could he get elected in today's Republican Party? Or would he be seen as a liberal?" [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
Bush rejected Gregory's speculation: "He also stopped the – the advancement of the federal government's overreach, he cut taxes in a dramatic way..."
Did you know that the mortgage interest deduction was a major contributor to families' distressed circumstances leading to the housing bubble? Or that George W. Bush's (really modest) tax cuts in 2001 and 2003, not the Internet bubble of the late-1990s led the nation from fiscal surplus to deficits?
The reason you don't "know" these things is that they're not true. But the Associated Press's Tom Raum thinks they are, and said so as if they are indisputable facts in an AP analysis piece (or at least I hope it was meant to be that) yesterday. In over 850 words, he also failed to note, while barely acknowleding their existence, that Republicans in the House already acquiesced to $620 billion in tax increases in return for a "whopping" $15 billion in spending cuts during the fiscal cliff deal at the end of last year. Excerpts from Raum's risible writeup follow the jump.
KGB operatives infiltrated conservative media? Wednesday night’s episode of FX’s The Americans imagines that in 1981 a conservative magazine employed a journalist who was really a mole for the KGB. On the day of the assassination attempt on President Ronald Reagan, “Charles Duluth” of the “Conservative Statesman” magazine, proclaims to a KGB operative who he is helping: “Frankly, I hope the bastard bleeds to death on the operating table.”
The Americans is centered around husband and wife KGB sleeper agents (Matthew Rhys and Keri Russell as “Philip and Elizabeth Jennings”) who live with their kids as ordinary Americans in suburban Washington, DC when Reagan becomes President.
Tony Kushner, the screenwriter behind the Oscar nominated movie 'Lincoln,' compared Barack Obama to the 16th president and called the defeat of Mitt Romney a "rejection" of the "Reagan era ideology" that leads to a "frightening" path of "psychotic individualism."
Appearing on Thursday's edition of PBS's Charlie Rose show the openly gay playwright called Obama's evolution on same-sex marriage "Lincolnian" and roasted Ronald Reagan, Romney and the Tea Party: (Video after the jump)
Last week’s second episode of The Americans (the third episode will run tonight, February 13, on FX), dramatically ended with a scene showing the horror realized by KGB operatives at the Soviet embassy in Washington, DC when they learn President Ronald Reagan intends to build “a ballistic missile shield” – aka the Strategic Defense Initiative. (video below)
The Americans is centered around husband and wife KGB sleeper agents (Matthew Rhys and Keri Russell as “Philip and Elizabeth Jennings”) who live with their kids as ordinary Americans in suburban Washington, DC when Ronald Reagan becomes President.
Ronald Reagan: RINO? Cokie Roberts and Joe Scarborough have suggested the Gipper might be viewed that way by the modern-day Republican party, making him unelectable within GOP ranks.
After Joe Scarborough said that it was Reagan who rounded up Republican support for the assault weapon ban in 1984, Roberts exclaimed "I'm not sure Reagan could get elected within the Republican party today." Scarborough concurred: "I don't know that he could." View the video after the jump.
FX’s new series which debuted Wednesday night, The Americans, is centered around husband and wife KGB sleeper agents who live with their kids as ordinary Americans in suburban Washington, DC when Ronald Reagan becomes President. Joe Weisberg, the creator and executive producer conceded to TV Guide that “this series, to a large extent, is told from the perspective of the KGB and the Soviets. We’re making them the sympathetic characters. I’d go so far as to say they’re the heroes.”
Yet, in the 95-minute pilot aired January 30, there were scenes which should hearten conservatives who believe in Reagan’s righteousness and the superiority of the United States.
A common media theme since the Republicans took over the House of Representatives in January 2011 has been that former President Ronald Reagan and former Speaker of the House Tip O’Neill were great legislative partners despite being from different parties.
Syndicated columnist Pat Buchanan threw some cold water on this notion on PBS’s McLaughlin Group Friday saying, “There’s a lot of myth about Tip O’Neill and Ronald Reagan working together. They did not" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
On Monday, far-left director Michael Moore went on an anti-Catholic bender at an awards presentation, and also targeted "those who would deify Reagan and Pope John Paul II" as somehow to blame for "the deaths of thousands of people...because of their bigotry."
The New York Post's Page Six on Wednesday spotlighted how the Occupy Wall Street-supporting filmmaker served as a presenter at the New York Film Critics Circle Awards. Moore gave the Best First Film award to fledgling director Armond White, who made a documentary about the radical activist group ACT UP.
Tonight, viewers of CBS-owned Showtime will be treated to the ninth of ten installments of Oliver Stone’s Untold History of the United States, which has attacked U.S. leaders – from FDR to Ronald Reagan – from the far-left while hailing the virtues of communists.
Last Monday’s installment, on Carter and Reagan, offered a representative sampling of Stone’s worldview, an hour which included displaying a woman holding the Media Research Center’s “Don’t Believe the Liberal Media” placard as he fretted over how President Reagan “enabled the growth of a right-wing media empire” which has “dramatically lower the standards of American political discourse and, in general, doom prospects for progressive change.”
Without even realizing it, the Washington Post's Glenn Kessler has done a great service for the conservative movement and the interests of taxpayers. For the first time, we have in one place—citable in a mainstream news source—definitive proof that President Reagan was tricked into agreeing to a phony spending cut/real tax hike deal. The minor detail that the fact checker draws the wrong conclusion is as immaterial as it is expected—for most fact checkers, the Republican is wrong even when he’s right.
We have an excerpt from Reagan’s memoirs. We have a quote from a Reagan nationally-televised speech. We have numbers broken out showing that the deal was, in fact, $3 in spending cuts for every $1 in tax hikes. We have quotations and descriptions of how Senator Bob Dole (R-Kan.) and OMB Director David Stockman basically knew all along that the spending cuts were phony. We have Secretary of Defense Cap Weinberger willfully refusing to implement the phony spending cuts. We have Dole writing a letter to the President desperately seeking to assure him that he didn’t just get his wallet lifted, thank you very much. We even have Jack Kemp as the taxpayer hero, detailing for the President the whys and wherefores of how he got sold a bill of goods.
"You gotta have hope; mustn't sit around and mope." -- "Damn Yankees"
Sitting in the room at the Jack Kemp Leadership Award dinner last week, listening to Senator Marco Rubio, Florida Republican, and Rep. Paul Ryan, Wisconsin Republican and of late the GOP vice presidential candidate, I sensed more than a generational shift in party leadership.
But in fact, most Americans in 2010 paid far less in total taxes -- federal, state and local -- than they would have paid 30 years ago. According to an analysis by The New York Times, the combination of all income taxes, sales taxes and property taxes took a smaller share of their income than it took from households with the same inflation-adjusted income in 1980.
Conservatives have been dreaming that a political reincarnation of Ronald Reagan would lead them to an electoral promised land. I never put my faith in such a possibility, because the past is a dangerous place in which to live. Reagan never lived in the past, though he learned from it.
Yet among the contemporary political figures that closely represent the substance and style that made Ronald Reagan who he was is Senator Marco Rubio, Florida Republican.
In last week's Food section, the Washington Post's Manuel Roig-Franzia cooked up a look at various First Families and their respective Thanksgiving traditions. While overall not that bad a feature, the current residents at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue received a fair bit of mushy treatment, especially for incorporating the produce of their organic White House garden into the Thanksgiving feast. [h/t my lovely wife Laura, who is hard at work on our Thanksgiving feast today]
What's more there will be "No creamy, gloppy, fattening dressing, either," Roig-Franzia gushed approvingly. "Their fresh produce will be dappled with a dressing that would make a dietitian beam, blended from shallots, lemon juice, red wine vinegar and olive oil." The Post staffer likewise included some vignettes about the last Democratic first family, the Clintons, and how Mrs. Clinton kept a sense of down-home Southern sensibility even in the fancy finery of the executive mansion's dining room: