Poverty

By Jeffrey Meyer | July 27, 2014 | 1:37 PM EDT

Meet the Press moderator David Gregory did his best to condemn Congressman Paul Ryan’s new anti-poverty proposal during an interview on Sunday, July 27. 

The NBC host played a clip of Ryan from 2013 in which he criticized a “dependency culture” in America which Gregory interpreted as not sounding “like there’s a lot of sympathy for people you think need the government's help. What you seem to be saying is that people have a problem with their own dependency here the government is only furthering.” [See video below.]  

By Curtis Houck | July 24, 2014 | 9:25 PM EDT

Ed Schultz spent a portion of his opening monologue on his MSNBC show Thursday attacking Representative Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and his latest policy proposal to reform government welfare programs, declaring that Ryan is “more radical than ever” and he’s “out there selling turd in the punch bowl.”

After trumpeting the long-standing liberal policy of increasing the minimum wage (which never works), Schultz moved to attack Ryan and a speech he made Thursday in which he offered, among many topics, plans to consolidate government welfare programs and reform federal education spending. [MP3 audio here; Video below]

By Tom Blumer | July 15, 2014 | 12:00 AM EDT

Michelle Obama's name must really be mud in the school nutrition community these days.

I had to do a double-take when I read today's coverage of the School Nutrition Association's Annual Conference in Boston by Philip Marcelo at the Associated Press today. What Marcelo hid from the nation is that the SNA didn't want Michelle Obama or anyone else from the White House anywhere near their conference.

By Tom Blumer | June 27, 2014 | 6:14 PM EDT

In an exercise supposedly "aimed at understanding the nature and scope of political polarization in the American public, and how it interrelates with government, society and people’s personal lives," the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press has published a 185-page report containing some of the most ridiculous either/or questions I have ever seen in a polling effort. Its mission seems to be to demonize anyone who believes that government aren't particularly good or effective at what they do, and anyone who thinks there are limits on what it can or should do.

One of the most egregious pieces of either/or nonsense caught the attention of liberal-leaning blogger and law professor Ann Althouse. Participants had to choose between the following two statements: "Poor people have it easy because they can get government benefits without doing anything," or "Poor people have hard lives because government benefits don't go far enough to help them live decently." Pew, which divided voters into different "typologies," reports that a combined 80-plus percent of those who it typed as "conservative went with the "have it easy" choice.

By Paul Bremmer | May 22, 2014 | 2:57 PM EDT

MSNBC’s Al Sharpton got nasty on Wednesday’s episode of his program PoliticsNation, comparing Republican-backed legislation to common household pests. The reverend’s remark came at the end of a conversation with Rep. Chaka Fattah (D-Pa.) on the House GOP’s proposed agriculture budget.

Sharpton and Fattah took particular issue with the budget’s proposal that only rural areas are to receive federal funding for a program to help low-income children get meals during the summer.  After thanking the congressman for his time, Sharpton added this metaphor to illustrate what he thinks he’s doing on his show:

By Jeffrey Meyer | May 4, 2014 | 1:40 PM EDT

Appearing as a guest on CBS’s Sunday program Face the Nation, liberal Georgetown University professor Michael Eric Dyson used the Donald Sterling controversy to make an unnecessary and disgusting swipe at Congressman Paul Ryan (R-WI). 

Dyson claimed “I see a relationship between what Paul Ryan says when he talks about inner-city people who are urban with all the code words being articulated and the kind of Cliven Bundy expression to the kind of Donald Sterling.” [See relevant transcript below.]  

By Brad Wilmouth | May 1, 2014 | 3:44 PM EDT

On the Wednesday, April 30, Hardball with Chris Matthews, guest and MSNBC political analyst Howard Fineman -- formerly of Newsweek -- mocked Wisconsin Republican Rep. Paul Ryan's intent to visit impoverished areas as a plan to "introduce himself to the bro," and went on to complain that Ryan's budget "whacks away at" programs to help the poor.

By Brad Wilmouth | April 30, 2014 | 9:02 PM EDT

On the Wednesday, April 30, The Reid Report, MSNBC host Joy Reid attacked Wisconsin Republican Rep. Paul Ryan's budget plan, claiming that it "guts" programs to help people in poverty, and ended up cracking that he, like Mitt Romney, "wants to fire Big Bird" because the budget would end federal government funding for PBS. [See video below.]

By Tom Blumer | April 29, 2014 | 1:44 PM EDT

The National Employment Law Project claims that it is dedicated to "working to restore the promise of economic opportunity in the 21st century economy." That sounds promising, but one look at NELP's directors and the supposed "solutions" the group and its friends advocate — e.g., higher minimum wage, "uphold the freedom to join a union." etc. It's clear that NELP is just another lefty advocacy group pushing the kinds of policies which have led to six years of economic weakness.

That said, NELP recently released research showing that jobs gained since the recession ended have skewed far more heavily towards low-wage industries than the jobs which were lost during the recession. Press coverage has been skimpy. The one major writeup at the New York Times on Sunday for Monday's print edition appeared on Page B4. The nature of Annie Lowrey's coverage at the Times led Fox News to accuratey tease it as a story about the "Fast-Food Recovery." Excerpts from the Times story follow the jump (bolds are mine):

By Brad Wilmouth | April 27, 2014 | 11:18 PM EDT

On the Saturday, April 26, Melissa Harris-Perry show on MSNBC, Jonathan Capehart of the Washington Post substitute hosted a segment celebrating efforts by the Obama administration to reduce the number of convicted felons in prison in aftermath of signing a law in 2010 reducing mandatory sentences.

Panel member Martin Glenn of Just Leadership USA -- who was introduced by Capehart as having a goal to "cut the U.S. prison population in half by 2030" -- joined USA Today columnist Raul Reyes in complaining about the requirement that prisoners serve 10 years with good behavior to be eligible for early release as the two suggested it was nearly impossible to do so.

By Jeffrey Meyer | April 16, 2014 | 2:49 PM EDT

MSNBC is not known as a champion of religion, unless it’s someone who is liberal coming on to criticize religious individuals, especially if they are a member of the Catholic Church. Take Sister Simone Campbell, president of the liberal Catholic organization NETWORK, who has been featured on the “Lean Forward” network multiple times for her criticism of Congressman Paul Ryan (R-WI) and his budget priorities.

Appearing as a guest on Andrea Mitchell Reports on Wednesday April 16, the fawning over Ms. Campbell was evident, with Mitchell proclaiming how “the honor is all mine” to finally meet Campbell in person. [See video below.]

By Kristine Marsh | April 7, 2014 | 3:43 PM EDT

There’s a certain delicious irony in the global warming industry – the one that’s always screaming about climate change “deniers” not “believing in science” – trying to make a religious appeal to Christians.

The Huffington Post on April 5 published “Climate Change Threats To ‘The Least of These’ Compel Evangelical Christians to Act,” in which writer Lynne Peeples interviewed Katharine Hayhoe, a “leading climate scientist,.” Hayhoe will be featured in the first episode of a new Showtime series directed by James Cameron called “Years of Living Dangerously.” The celebrity-studded documentary series will address “the entanglement of politics, faith and science that impedes acceptance and action on climate change.” Basically, it’s a bunch of left-wing secularists blaming religion for mucking up the climate change movement.