Poverty

By Mark Finkelstein | October 22, 2013 | 9:18 AM EDT

For all his accomplishments, Henry Louis Gates might be doomed to being best remembered as the man whose arrest led to the "Beer Summit." But the Harvard prof had something surprising to say on today's Morning Joe: Gates questioned the need for affirmative action for affluent African-Americans, saying instead such programs should seek to help poor people, regardless of race.

Gates made the personal political, citing the case of his own two daughters, whom Gates described as having a "privileged" life."Do they really need to benefit from affirmative action?", asked Gates rhetorically.  View the video after the jump.

By Brent Bozell | September 24, 2013 | 11:14 PM EDT

Why are liberals in so much denial about liberal bias in the news? Why do they think they’re bending over backward to be “objective” doing that which Republicans see as partisan activism?

Daniel Froomkin of the Huffington Post – formerly of The Washington Post – suggests an answer. He is exactly the kind of liberal agitator in the newsroom who wants every news story to be a blazing editorial. Every reporter must divide the world clearly between Liberal Sense and Conservative Nonsense. His latest article is titled “Writing a Neutral Story About Something So Heartless As the Food Stamp Vote Is Not Good Journalism.”

By Brad Wilmouth | September 16, 2013 | 6:42 PM EDT

Between August 13 and September 13, MSNBC's PoliticsNation host Al Sharpton has been so obsessed with FNC host Bill O'Reilly's criticism of food stamp abuse, the MSNBC host has on seven separate occasions played a clip of O'Reilly complaining that some food stamp recipients are "parasites" who abuse the system.

But Sharpton has repeatedly portrayed O'Reilly's comment as a general attack on the poor, as his PoliticsNation program seven times has played the same clip -- or a shorter version -- of the FNC host. O'Reilly, from the Monday, August 12, The O'Reilly Factor on FNC:

By Tim Graham | September 14, 2013 | 4:20 PM EDT

On Washington's NPR station WAMU on September 11, afternoon talk-show host Kojo Nnamdi organized a typically one-sided hour on food-stamp policy, with three liberal advocates trashing Republicans for proposing some kind of limit on skyrocketing "SNAP" spending.

But callers ruined the tilt by asking: What about fraud? "John from Chantilly, Virginia" talked about watching a person buy lobsters with their SNAP card. John asked if there was a party, and was told lobsters were all the dogs would eat. The NPR host then started a debate about corrupt governors in Illinois:

By Matthew Sheffield | August 20, 2013 | 7:02 PM EDT

Following major electoral defeats, it has become a bit of a tradition for people on the losing side to try and figure out what went wrong and how to return back to political favor. Oftentimes, these books tend to devolve into laundry lists of issues rather than explore some of the broader themes of politics itself.

Last week, I spoke to one author who avoids those problems, I’m pleased today to offer a conversation with another one, Donald Devine, a man who has spent decades in public service in academia, in government in the Reagan Administration, and outside as a conservative commentator.

By Brad Wilmouth | August 20, 2013 | 4:13 PM EDT

On Monday's PoliticsNation on MSNBC, host Al Sharpton again raised a distortion against FNC host Bill O'Reilly as he accused O'Reilly of applying the word "parasites" to "people in need," even though the FNC host was referring to people abusing the welfare system.

After Sharpton asserted that O'Reilly "slammed food stamp recipients as parasites," he played a clip of the FNC host. O'Reilly:

By Brad Wilmouth | August 19, 2013 | 6:32 PM EDT

On Friday's PoliticsNation show, MSNBC host Al Sharpton reacted to FNC's Bill O'Reilly criticizing him the night before, as the FNC host had called out Sharpton for taking out of context his contention that some who receive food stamps are "parasites" who take advantage of the system, and divulged that he had made a donation to one of Sharpton's charities in the past.

After having tagged O'Reilly with "hypocrisy" in a plug before the segment, Sharpton brought up the donation from O'Reilly and declared:

By Matthew Sheffield | August 14, 2013 | 12:10 PM EDT

In recent years, there has been a lot of discussion about the expense of the welfare state. There has not been much discussion about the effects of its expansiveness and generosity on those who qualify for its assistance, however. There also does not seem to be much of a realization of just how much more today’s beneficiaries receive.

Since the American establishment media are so utterly uninterested in asking questions that might undermine left-wing beliefs, we must turn instead to a new television series airing in the UK called “Benefits Britain 1949.”

By Tom Blumer | August 11, 2013 | 8:53 PM EDT

One has to sift through the biased blather to get to it, but Mary Clare Jalonick's August 1 coverage at the Associated Press, aka the Administration's Press, of the House's plans to rein in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, still popularly called "food stamps," contains an important admission which most of the establishment press has avoided as the program's costs and enrollment have skyrocketed, all in the name of preserving the false impression that the program is exclusively about preventing people from starving.

As usual, one of those distractions is the tired idea that what the House is proposing represents harmful "cuts," when what is really occurring is a long overdue and yet still watered-down effort to target benefits to the truly eligible and prevent their disbursement to people who either don't need them or shouldn't get them (bolds and numbered tags are mine):

By Brad Wilmouth | July 31, 2013 | 6:56 PM EDT

On Tuesday's PoliticsNation on MSNBC, host Al Sharpton complained that a "war on the poor" has been "launched" by the right, prompting  Washington Post political reporter Nia-Malika Henderson to complain of a "dangerous tone" from conservatives and "antipathy towards Americans."

Setting up clips from Rush Limbaugh and FBN's Charles Payne, Sharpton fretted:

By Tom Blumer | July 28, 2013 | 3:27 PM EDT

If you've been wondering where the Associated Press's 2013 entry into the "Worst AP Report Ever" contest has been hiding, have no fear. It's here. Oh, it's not as bad as the current worst-ever leader, the laughably execrable "Everything seemingly is spinning out of control" in June 2008. Nevertheless, it's a "strong" entry -- as in almost indescribably weak as journalism.

The AP's (Abandon All) Hope Yen believes she has exclusive "news" she simply must share with you: Most Americans face significant economic stress sometime in their lives. Stop the presses, shut down the Internet, and cancel Christmas. Excerpts follow the jump.

By Jeffrey Meyer | July 25, 2013 | 1:30 PM EDT

For the past few years, MSNBC hosts have run “Lean Forward” ads wherein they push different liberal advocacy issues from universal health care to considering children to be the collective "property" of the "community." MSNBC’s latest “Lean Forward” ad features host Alex Wagner focusing on yet another liberal pet project: raising the federal minimum wage.

In an ad which aired on July 25, Wagner whined that, “I don’t understand why there isn’t a more robust conversation about the minimum wage.” Wagner, a former cultural correspondent for the liberal think-tank Center for American Progress, has been featured in numerous “Lean Forward” ads, including one where she mocks Republican efforts to strengthen border security. [See video after jump. MP3 audio here.]