In one of a virtually endless stream of such examples, a Monday Associated Press report by Elaine Ganley and Greg Keller on challenges facing newly elected French Prime Minister, Socialist Francois Hollande, described him as "the leftist who has pledged to buck Europe's austerity trend."
What a deceptive joke. Europe's attempt at "austerity" can't be a "trend," because it hasn't even started. The "Fiscal Treaty" involved (at Google Docs; at RTE News [large PDF]) hasn't even taken effect. Article 14, as explained by RTE's Europe Editor Tony Connelly, "will enter into force on January 1 2013 so long as 12 member states have completed ratification." A Monday editorial at Investor's Business Daily took the press to task for its pretense, and in the process noted facts about the monstrous growth of government in EU countries the U.S. establishment press won't report (bolds are mine throughout this post):
On Monday, CBS This Morning gave leftist New York Times columnist Paul Krugman a platform to promote his new book and to spout his usual prescription of massive government spending. Krugman also bashed Mitt Romney: "He's going to make Herbert Hoover look good by comparison." Anchor Gayle King boosted her guest by twice citing President Obama's praise for the author as "one of the smartest economic reporters."
Krugman briefly acknowledged the "long-term budget problem," but quickly added that "now is not the time to be slashing....Now is the time to be doing public works, to be rehiring those school teachers, to get this economy moving again." He also ripped the austerity measures taken by several European countries: "You look at what's happening in Europe and...we just learned that austerity is not the answer...the big problem now is not to have a new stimulus, but simply to reverse those cuts at the state level."
On Friday evening, it was Christopher Rugaber and Paul Wiseman. Today it's Martin Crutsinger. Together with Derek Kravitz (who isn't in on the latest offense -- yet), perhaps the just-named quartet of alleged journalists should be named "The Four Distortsmen."
Today, it was Crutsinger who, in the wake of a mediocre report on consumer spending, again invoked "government budget-cutting as the primary culprit explaining why the economy only grew by an estimated annualized 2.2% during the first quarter:
Google Chairman Eric Schmidt gave a much-needed economics lesson to New York Times columnist and Nobel laureate Paul Krugman on ABC's This Week Sunday.
During a lengthy discussion about liberal and conservative views on how to stimulate the currently soft recovery, Schmidt - a known Barack Obama supporter - marvelously said to his left-leaning co-panelist, "Surely you're not arguing that the government should hire all the unemployed people" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
A truly shocking thing happened on CNN's Fareed Zakaria GPS Sunday.
The perilously liberal host - with journalistically corrupt ties to the current White House - came out against the millionaires' tax known as the Buffett Rule calling it "bad politics in the long run for Obama" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
On today's 3:00 pm edition of CNN Newsroom, anchor Brooke Baldwin teased her next segment:
BALDWIN: Coming up next, House Republicans they want to cut billions of dollars in food stamps. We will talk about who exactly in terms of numbers this would impact and why my next guest calls this whole suggestion appalling -- back in 60 seconds.
Baldwin interviewed Edward Cooney, executive director of the Congressional Hunger Center. She didn't note that, despite its official-sounding name, the center is just another 501(c)3 tax-exempt organization taking money from companies such as Walmart, Kraft, and Archer Daniel Midland, as well public funding for fellowships. Nor that Cooney had worked at the Department of Agriculture during the Clinton administration. Nor that Cooney has made political contributions to Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA) and ActBlue, which characterizes itself as "the online clearing house for Democratic action."
There was a truly delicious moment on ABC's This Week Sunday that should be mandatory viewing for all liberal media members.
After the perilously liberal editor of The Nation magazine, along with Obama's former domestic policy adviser, blamed all the nation's problems on Republican obstruction in Congress, the Wall Street Journal's Paul Gigot struck back saying, "The first two years [Obama] had open field, Democratic, vast Democratic majorities. You got what you wanted. You got a huge expansion of federal government. How is that working out?" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
On Friday, Darren Samuelsohn at the Politico (HT Hot Air), the place where it seems that inconvenient stories go so the Associated Press, the New York Times and the rest of the establishment press can claim they have an excuse not to cover them (respective proofs as of about 3:30 p.m. in the current instance are here and here), covering -- or I should say attempting to cover -- the latest of the White House's ritual Friday document dumps, reported that a White House communications official rejected an apparent proposal to seat Solyndra executives at the President's January 2011 State of the Union address, and that others within the White House already knew that Solyndra was in deep trouble before then.
And he almost got to the real meat of the story, but not quite. In this instance, not quite isn't anywhere near good enough (bolds are mine throughout this post), nor is the "nothing new here, you really don't need to read this" headline:
Well, I guess when you think you're going to sell 45,000 cars and you're on track to achieve about 25% of that, something's gotta give.
Something gave today, as Government/General Motors announced a temporary suspension of production of the company's centerpiece of environmental correctness, the Chevy Volt, and the layoff of 1,300 employees. Oh, and as readers will see in the Examiner.com excerpt, it's the (cough, cough) media's fault:
Liberal New York Times economics reporter turned left-wing editorial board member Eduardo Porter has published his first “Economic Scene” column, taking over from David Leonhardt, who is now Washington bureau chief.
Porter is known at Times Watch for his embrace of Occupy Wall Street and for calling Mexican media mogul Carlos Slim a "thief" and "robber baron" in a 2007 editorial -- before Slim loaned $250 million to the NYT Co. and became, in the words of Times publisher Arthur Sulzberger, "a very shrewd businessman with an appreciation for great brands."
The New York Times’s most reliably conservative-loathing columnist, Paul Krugman, was interviewed for the March issue of Playboy, where he defended Occupy Wall Street (never mind all the crime and arrests), claimed that “environmental regulations could actually be creating jobs right now,” and defended his loathsome blog post from the morning of the 10th anniversary of 9-11.
Sympathetic interviewer Jonathan Tasini didn’t challenge Krugman’s Keynesian premises, though the introduction to the piece hit some of Krugman’s irritating character traits, like his arrogance, while noting the Obama “administration frets about what Krugman says...mainly because his voice is listened to by legions of liberals.” Krugman also indulged in the "broken window fallacy" when he claimed that more environmental regulations could create jobs. Some highlights:
I guess what follows shouldn't be a total surprise, given that the Obama administration was perfectly comfortable ruining hundreds of thousands of perfectly good cars during the Cash For Clunkers program in 2009.
The video which follows from CBS News in San Francisco last Thursday (full transcript here) tells viewers what is happening to valuable parts at the main manufacturing plant of the now-bankrupt Solyndra. At the risk of belaboring what longtime readers here already instinctively know, it's not news based on searches on the company's name at at the Associated Press and the New York Times.
This critic of the President analyzed the contents of so-called conservative Andrew Sullivan's piece and has come to the conclusion that it is he and the unashamedly liberal magazine he writes for that are lacking in intellectual capacity and/or integrity.
All one needs is read the following from Sullivan's third paragraph to understand the absurdity on display:
There are quite a few problems with Ricardo Alonso-Zaldivar's December 28 coverage ("New fee coming for medical effectiveness research") concerning a new fee (i.e., tax) which will imposed on health insurance companies for each person they cover starting tomorrow.
Several times (twice in the body and once as seen above in the headline), the story refers to the assessment as a "medical effectiveness research" fee (without quotes). Just once, in the eleventh paragraph, does Alonso-Zaldivar call it by its far more widely-known name (written as indicated): "comparative effectiveness" research. But the item which stuck out like a sore thumb with me, and should also do so for anyone else who closely followed how the stimulus bill got enacted into law as well as the Obamacare discussions later that year,, was the following paragraph (bolds are mine):
In an item which still has a breaking news tag, Josh Funk at the Associated Press (saved here for future reference, fair use, and discussion purposes) call retiring Nebraska Senator Ben Nelson a "centrist," and almost seemed to mourn over "an increasingly polarizing climate" which made it clear that Nelson's reelection would have been a steep uphill fight. Of course, there was no mention of the infamous Cornhusker kickback which was offered and then withdrawn in a firestorm of controversy in an Obama administration attempt to win Nelson's support for the passage of ObamaCare -- which they got anyway.
Here are several paragraphs from Funk's report and the immediately following breaking news item:
George Will on Sunday marvelously told liberal economist Robert Reich something that many conservatives have been dying to say for years.
During a fascinating Right vs. Left debate on ABC's This Week, after Reich predictably pined for higher income tax rates to solve all that ails us, Will struck back with the line of the weekend, "You are a pyromaniac in a field of strawmen" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Despite a massively expensive 2009 stimulus program, high unemployment and a sluggish economy have been trademarks of the Obama administration. The goal of the stimulus was to create shovel-ready jobs, with, according to top Obama economic advisor Larry Summers, a "targeted," "temporary," and "timely" scope. As many predicted, the stimulus failed to produce the Keynesian results it promised.
In its Monday afternoon coverage of the Congressional battle over extending the payroll tax cut, CNN repeatedly emphasized a Democratic advantage and claimed that the Democrats are acting like "conservative Republicans." Political analyst Gloria Borger even gave the Democratic talking point that the party roles on tax cuts have been switched.
"You know, if you're a true believer, and you're a Republican who believes that the tax cuts will pay for themselves, the question really is not how do you pay for it, but why do you pay for it, right? I mean, why pay for it at all?" CNN's Borger asked of the Republican insistence that the cuts be paid for without raising taxes elsewhere. "The Democrats, ironically, are acting much more like the conservative Republicans here," she boldly added. [Video below the break. Click here for audio.]
For conservatives, one of the bright spots of the Occupy Wall Street protests was when millionaire investor Peter Schiff went down to Zuccotti Park with video camera and a sign reading "I Am The 1% - Let's Talk."
On Tuesday, I had the pleasure of speaking with Schiff by telephone in a sweeping interview about his experience at OWS, how the financial media are doing, and ending with his rather frightening view of the economy and the future of our nation (video follows with transcript):
On Monday's NBC Rock Center, host Brian Williams took time to update viewers on the latest political news, "And if you want to guess how dirty this campaign will be, listen to this Romney ad....Romney's spokesperson said they're not going to take their foot off the gas."
Williams played a clip of President Obama from the ad: "If we keep talking about the economy, we're going to lose." He then warned: "Now you might think they've got him there. Obama got zinged by Romney. But wait, no, he didn't. Here's what Obama actually said....He was talking about John McCain's strategy in the last election. But this campaign season, that doesn't seem to matter."
On Wednesday's NBC Today, co-host Matt Lauer interviewed Obama advisor David Plouffe and promoted liberal concerns that the administration had not pushed enough government economic programs: "Even the Democratic Mayor of Scranton, Christopher Dougherty, says that he'd hoped for more federal help under this Democratic administration, and it hasn't come."
Lauer further detailed Dougherty's disillusionment with the President: "His words, 'Four years ago it was about hope. Now it's about his record,' referring to the President. How does the President look the people of Scranton, Pennsylvania, for example, in the eye and say, 'I know we talked about hope and change. It hasn't really worked out. I need more time'?"
Nobel laureate Paul Krugman - might he finally be realizing that our budget deficits can't possibly be solved by just eliminating the Bush tax cuts? - is now calling for marginal rates even higher than when Bill Clinton was in office:
The dictionary definition of "stimulate" relevant to a nation's economy is "to rouse to action or effort."
We still have journalists who gullibly relay the notion that extending unemployment benefits and increasing entitlement programs will "rouse" the economy "to action of effort," despite almost three years of evidence that such is not the case. One of them is Andrew Taylor, a writer for the Associated Press, who, in his unprofessionally titled ("Deficit deal failure would pose crummy choice") and painfully long writeup about the supercommittee's lack of action or effort in Washington, wrote the following:
You would think that a story headlined "GOP says Energy Dept. tried to delay solar layoffs" would have a quote or two from a Republican Party spokesperson, politician, candidate or even a rank-and-file party member alleging that, well, the Energy Department tried to delay layoffs at now-bankrupt Solyndra. It doesn't. The "trifling" matter clearly didn't concern the headline writer at the Associated Press, which one again is showing that it deserves to be called "The Administration's Press."
Without attribution, Matthew Daly's early afternoon story (saved here at host for future reference, fair use and discussion purposes) largely relays and only slightly builds on what Carol D. Leonnig and Joe Stephens reported yesterday at the Washington Post. What follows are selected paragraphs from Daly's report, including two (in bold) which only generically cite GOP criticism:
"The Obama administration urged the now-bankrupt solar-energy firm Solyndra and its top investor to hold off announcing planned layoffs in 2010 until after the Nov. 2 elections, according to e-mails released by House Republicans on Tuesday," Amy Harder of National Journal reported this morning:
The bipartisan debt panel to nowhere is exactly where K Street lobbyists want it to be: hopelessly deadlocked. A November 23 deadline for agreement on $1.2 trillion in budget savings is looming, but no real reductions in the size, scope or spending of government are on the table. Instead, we are witnessing another obscene special-interest splurge to preserve the status quo. All in the name of "reform," of course.
The only thing "super" about the so-called budget control super committee is the size of lobbying muscle exerted on its members. Almost 100 registered lobbyists who are former employees of super committee members are now "representing defense companies, health-care conglomerates, Wall Street banks and others with a vested interest in the outcome of the panel's work," the Washington Post found in September. This includes two dozen former staffers to Democratic Sen. Max Baucus of Montana, including three former chiefs of staff.
It's truly delicious when the outfit which calls itself the Essential Global News Network essentially admits that a certain economic theory which begins with a "K" has become such an undesirable word -- almost an epithet -- that it avoids its mention.
That was the case with a pathetic critique of GOP candidates' economic plans written up by the wire service's Charles Babington on Sunday. When I saw its headline ("Studies challenge wisdom of GOP candidates' plans"), I blew past the story because I expected the same-old, same-old. Then an emailer with a journalistic background informed me that it was even worse than usual. He's so right that I can't possibly pick it apart without writing a book; so I'll just concentrate on the paragraph containing the theory with no name and the one which immediately follows it:
Energy Department Inspector General Gregory Friedman testified before a congressional committee yesterday that the department was "ill-equipped to quickly distribute billions of dollars in economic stimulus funding," reported the Washington Post's Ed O'Keefe in the November 3 paper.
"Friedman's testimony was meant to summarize more than 100 investigations conducted by his office into Energy's stimulus spending. The probes have recovered $2.3 million in fraudulently obtained money and sparked five criminal prosecutions," O'Keefe noted in his 12-paragraph story, which was buried on page A19 of the Post with the bland headline "Energy Dept. called ill-suited to loan project."
"Friedman also criticized the administration for touting the existence of 'shovel-ready' projects" that did not exist, noted O'Keefe.
America's richest man isn't going to make President Obama, the folks in the Occupy Wall Street movement, or their respective supporters in the media happy.
Appearing on ABC's This Week Sunday, Bill Gates laughed when asked about the Buffett Rule saying, "You can't raise the taxes we need just by going after that one percent...to really deal with the deficit gap we're talking about, that alone just numerically is not going to be enough" (video follows with transcript):
Jonathan Alter, who spent 28 years at Newsweek, has been a columnist at Bloomberg News since early this year. Just this year, the reliably and insufferably liberal Alter, among many other things, called the Republican House's passage of Paul Ryan's budget plan in April an attempt "to throw Granny in the snow," and coldly calculated that in the wake of her shooting, Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was more valuable to Barack Obama's reelection efforts alive than dead.
In early January, Alter, appearing on an MSNBC program, took great offense at Rep. Darrell Issa's suggestion that the Obama White House is "one of the most corrupt administrations ever," claiming that "there is zero evidence" of it. The Washington Examiner's Tim Carney proceeded to identify seven such examples. Alter must have been saying "la-la I can't hear you" during Carney's chronicle, as his October 27 column was an exercise in sheer fantasy from beginning to end (bolds are mine throughout this post):