Government Agencies

By Kyle Drennen | October 22, 2014 | 12:19 PM EDT

On Wednesday, Today co-host Matt Lauer began an interview with Bill O'Reilly by citing liberal New York Times columnist Frank Bruni actually criticizing the Obama administration's handling of the Ebola crisis: "One dimension of the disease's toll is clear. It's ravaging Americans' already tenuous  faith in the competence of our government and its bureaucracies."

O'Reilly agreed with Bruni's "very perceptive" analysis and declared that Americans "should be angry at their government, because they blew it! Blew it, blew it, blew it!"

By Tom Blumer | October 21, 2014 | 1:24 PM EDT

Josh Lederman's report this morning at the Associated Press, aka the Administration's Press, treats President Barack Obama's return to Chicago as a trip down memory lane: "Obama got glimpses of a simpler time when his life was for the most part, normal: the unpaid bills on his desk, the volunteers who pitched in on his first Senate campaign, the day he marched in seven Fourth of July parades."

The reference to "unpaid bills" is from the President's remarks at a DNC event at a private home in Chicago. But the speech transcript now posted at the White House web site has scrubbed the related passage, as Daniel Halper at the Weekly Standard noted early this morning. There may have been an additional development since that post appeared.

By Tom Blumer | October 19, 2014 | 12:27 PM EDT

The White House is apparently feeling pretty full of itself over the fiscal 2014 federal budget result it has just reported.

Reacting to the news that this year's deficit was "only" $483.4 billion, White House budget director Shaun Donovan crowed that "This is a return to fiscal normalcy." The press, of course including Andrew Taylor at the Associated Press, has accepted all of this with little challenge, including the administration's misleading "percentage of GDP" assertions, which completely ignore how much more the national debt has grown than the reported budget deficits. Taylor went one step further, blatanty deceiving readers as to how much money the federal government borrows for every dollar it spends.

By Tom Blumer | October 18, 2014 | 11:04 PM EDT

On October 8, Andrew Taylor at the Associated Press wrote that "(President Barack) Obama inherited a trillion-dollar-plus deficit after the 2008 financial crisis." In a NewsBusters post later that day, I pegged Obama's true inheritance at roughly $245 billion as of when he was first sworn into office, and at about $600 billion if projected over the full fiscal year. The actual deficit for fiscal 2009 came in at just over $1.4 trillion due to deficit-increasing actions by Obama and the Democrat-dominated Congress.

I guess we're supposed to forget about Taylor's egregious falsehood, because AP's national site has since replaced his story, perhaps more than one time. That's not happening.

By Tom Blumer | October 17, 2014 | 11:22 PM EDT

In an all too typical unskeptical report, Jim Kuhnhenn at the Associated Press, aka the Administration's Press, allowed President Barack Obama to claim, in Kuhnhenn's words, that "health and security experts continue to tell him that the screening measures already in place for travelers are more effective" than "restricting travel to the U.S. from the three Ebola-stricken West African nations."

I'm sure that readers would just love to know who these "health and security experts" are, especially given the fact that the AP itself reported Thursday that nations in Africa which have successfully kept the virus at bay have cited "border closings" as a critical element of their strategy.

By Kyle Drennen | October 17, 2014 | 4:15 PM EDT

Appearing on Friday's CBS This Morning, Republican pollster Frank Luntz reacted to the latest CBS News poll showing Americans having a "crisis of confidence" in government institutions: "The problem is that the institutions that have the greatest impact on us, the CDC, the FDA, the EPA, those that are responsible for our health and safety, are the ones that have had the biggest collapse. In fact, in some cases it's 20-30-point drop in just the last 15-18 months."

By Matthew Balan | October 17, 2014 | 3:28 PM EDT

On Thursday's Erin Burnett OutFront, CNN's Tom Foreman zeroed in on representatives on "both sides of the aisle...[who] are also clearly frustrated by what they see as a lack of answers and accountability from the CDC." Foreman highlighted that "CDC Director Tom Frieden dodged even basic questions – like how did two hospital workers get the disease" at a congressional hearing on the federal government's response to Ebola entering the U.S.

By Tom Blumer | October 15, 2014 | 11:58 PM EDT

For years, government watchdog groups have chronicled numerous instances of waste and abuse — at the very least — at the Centers for Disease Control and its National Institutes for Health.

An establishment press corps doing its job, upon hearing the director of the National Institutes for Health claim that "if we had not gone through our 10-year slide in research support, we probably would have had a vaccine" for Ebola by now, and especially upon hearing leftist poltiticians then claim that it's all Republicans' fault, would look into whether part of the problem might be poor bureacratic stewardship. But they're not doing their job.

By Tom Blumer | October 15, 2014 | 12:36 PM EDT

Early this morning, Glenn Kessler, the Washington Post's designated fact-checker gave the left's claims that Republicans alone were responsible for alleged "cuts" to Ebola research four Pinocchios (i.e., a "whopper").

That's nice, but it hardly undoes the damage news outlets like the Associated Press have inflicted on the truth in the apparent name of ginning up resentment among low-information voters. I'll get to that, but first, here are the key passages from Kessler's critique, which essentially gets down to who's responsible for sequestration (the correct answer is that it was President Obama and the White House; bolds are mine throughout this post):

By Tom Blumer | October 11, 2014 | 4:07 PM EDT

The federal government's latest fiscal year ended on September 30. The final Monthly Treasury Statement for the fiscal year, will likely be published during the coming week or possibly a few days later.

From time to time, commenters at NewsBusters have pointed that Uncle Sam's reported deficits don't represent the whole story. They are certainly right. While the press is all excited over this week's Monthly Budget Review released by the Congressional Budget Office, which contain an unofficial but probably accurate estimate that the fiscal 2014 budget deficit was "only" $486 billion, the national debt has grown by far more than that.

By Tom Blumer | October 10, 2014 | 5:50 PM EDT

This morning, I received two identical daily briefing emails from USA Today. The subject line was "Life Expectancy in USA Reaches Record High."

As USA Today's web-page version of the email shows, the email body contained no link to or mention of a life-expectancy related article. Giving the paper the benefit of the doubt, I clicked on the email's "5 things you need to know Friday"; it also has nothing on the topic. After searching for and finding Larry Copeland's related article and doing just a little research, it's clear that the news, while indeed a record, is not anywhere near as encouraging as the reporter's cheerleading content would indicate (bolds are mine):

By Tom Blumer | October 8, 2014 | 2:44 PM EDT

In a sign that the historical revisionists and Barack Obama legacy builders at the Associated Press, aka the Administration's Press, may have shifted their operation into high gear for the final weeks of the midterm election campaign, Andrew Taylor has written that "Obama inherited a trillion-dollar-plus deficit after the 2008 financial crisis."

The occasion for Taylor's tripe is the Congressional Budget Office's release of its final Monthly Budget Review for fiscal year 2014. In the report, which the AP has almost always ignored in every other month in favor of waiting for the official Monthly Treasury Statement issued shortly thereafter, the CBO estimates that the year's budget deficit will come in at "only" $486 billion. A grab of Taylor's original full five-paragraph blurb, which has since been revised while still containing the "inherited" claim, follows the jump: