For several weeks, NewsBusters has been reporting that despite protestations from liberal media members, Texas governor Rick Perry is 100 percent correct when he calls Social Security a Ponzi scheme.
On PBS's "Inside Washington" Friday, syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer put a fine point on this saying, "If Charles Ponzi had had the force of the law forcing people, new entrants, into his scheme, he’d still be going. He’d be commissioner of Social Security" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Confessore, who once worked for the liberal journals Washington Monthly and American Prospect, once again staunchly defended Social Security. In a December 2004 post for the Prospect, he praised the Times, the paper he was about to join, for its harsh coverage of President Bush’s attempt at free-market-based Social Security reform.
On Tuesday's Early Show, CBS targeted Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry by using their 'Fast Draw' animators to depict the Texas governor as gun-slinging, right-wing extremist. Cartoonists Josh Landis and Mitch Butler turned to a Texas journalist who claimed that Perry "would turn back the clock. He would take America back to where there was basically no safety net" [audio clips available here].
The largely animated segment focused on Perry as part of "a contest to find out who will be 'America's Next Top Republican,'" a parody of the TV show "America's Next Top Model." After labeling the governor a "true believer," Landis noted the Texas politician's beginnings in "the dusty little town of Paint Creek," highlighting how "he bathed on the back porch," even depicting this with feet hanging out of a bathtub.
[Video clips from the segment available below the jump.]
It is very disheartening to see Republican presidential primary candidates racing to out-demagogue one another in denouncing Texas Gov. Rick Perry's accurate description of Social Security as a Ponzi scheme. It used to be that Republicans at least waited until the general election campaign to pander to liberals.
I admire Perry both for telling it like it is and for having the guts to stand by his statement when under fire. That shows character.
Whether or not Social Security is a Ponzi scheme was again a source of great discussion during Monday's Republican presidential debate, and it appears this is likely going to be a hot issue throughout this election cycle.
What should be interesting to participants and pundits alike is that during the last presidential campaign, on November 5, 2007, the late Tim Russert, and Chris Matthews, while talking about the Democrat candidates on an episode of MSNBC's "Hardball" broadcast exactly one year before America elected its first black president, agreed that Social Security was "a bad Ponzi scheme" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
The day after the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, CNN asked if Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry was being a "bomb thrower" for vilifying Social Security as a Ponzi scheme.
After playing a clip of Perry calling the program a "monstrous lie" and a "Ponzi scheme," CNN's Kyra Phillips teed up Democratic strategist Maria Cardona with this question: "Bomb thrower or truth teller, Maria?" Cardona predictably replied that Perry was a "bomb thrower."
As NewsBusters previously reported, MSNBC's Chris Matthews on Thursday admitted that Social Security is technically a Ponzi scheme.
Less than 24 hours earlier, in numerous post-debate discussions, the "Hardball" host criticized Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry for saying the same thing (video follows with transcript and commentary):
It's not often that you see a member of the liberal media elite concede an important point to conservatives. It's even rarer when the person doing it is Obama cheerleader Chris Matthews. But that's just what happened during last night’s “Hardball” when the former Tip O’Neill aide dared to state the obvious fact that Social Security is remarkably similar to a Ponzi scheme—a truth that has become not just inconvenient to the left, but almost verboten.
Matthews’s admission occurred in a discussion about Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry who has come under a huge amount of fire from the left and even from fellow candidates for repeatedly stating that the pay-as-you-go nature of Social Security has many similarities to a classic Ponzi pyramid scheme.
New York Times online political reporter Michael Shear made Saturday’s front page with his close reading of the oeuvre of Texas Gov. Rick Perry and was predictably disturbed by what he found. “Perry’s Blunt Views in Books Get New Scrutiny as He Joins Race” amounts to a handy bit of opposition research before Perry’s debate debut on Wednesday (contingent on the wildfires in his home state of Texas).
Rick Perry, the governor of Texas, believes that climate change is a “contrived, phony mess.” The federal income tax was the “great milestone on the road to serfdom.” And the Boy Scouts of America are under attack by “a radical homosexual movement.”
George Will and Donna Brazile had a telling exchange on ABC's "This Week" Sunday.
After Will listed all the excuses President Obama makes for the poor economy, Brazile said, "I thought you were going to mention media" leading Will to smartly retort, "They're not his problem" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
In the Associated Press's writeup ("Social Security disability on verge of insolvency") of the situation occasioned by a congressional report repeating the obvious, Stephen Ohlemacher surprisingly and correctly retold a bit of the history which readers should find quite interesting, as it largely explains how the program got out of control (bold is mine):
The opening sentence of Charles Babington's "objective report" about the possible extension of what was billed late last year as a "temporary payroll tax cut" reads like a Democratic National Committee press release: "News flash: Congressional Republicans want to raise your taxes."
It doesn't get any better until the final paragraph. Babington's babble is otherwise a long-winded, chidish taunt about the supposed hypocrisy of anyone who would like to see a program which, for all its very considerable faults, at least ran a cash surplus for several decades get into the neighborhood of where taxes collected almost equal disbursements.
As NewsBustersreported, America's media last week gushed and fawned over billionaire Warren Buffett's call for higher taxes on the rich.
On Monday, Harvey Golub, the former CEO of American Express, responded to the Oracle of Omaha in a Wall Street Journal op-ed that reveals a side of this tax story media refuse to share with the American people:
As NewsBusters has been reporting, the Obama-loving media have largely been gushing and fawning over the current White House resident taking a vacation on Martha's Vineyard as the economy appears to be heading into a double-dip recession.
Giving an interesting insight into the President's decision to not call Congress back from its summer break to tackle the problems facing the nation was New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd who wrote Sunday:
Sometimes I wonder how liberal media members could possibly live in the same country as I do and hold such startlingly absurd ideas about it.
Take for example FareedZakaria who on the CNN program bearing his name this Sunday is going to tell viewers that America would likely still have a AAA credit rating if we had a parliamentary system of government with a prime minister rather than a president (video follows with transcript and commentary):
It appears David Gregory is a bit confused about how our system of government works.
During intense questioning of Congresswoman Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) on Sunday's "Meet the Press," the host scolded his guest for having the nerve to actually care what the American people thought about raising the debt ceiling (video follows with transcript and commentary):
"I must confess that every time Representative Michele Bachmann uttered the phrase 'as president of the United States' during Thursday's Republican presidential debate I blacked out a little bit, so I'm sure that I missed some things."
So actually began a piece by New York Times columnist Charles Blow Saturday:
As NewsBusters reported, MSNBC's Chris Matthews on Wednesday took some poorly-researched cheap shots at conservative talk radio host Rush Limbaugh.
Limbaugh responded Thursday explaining that this is borne of frustration over the failure of Barack Obama noting, "The Chris Matthewses and the media are very close to the rioters in London in terms of anger, disappointment" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Remember the good old days when political commentators were governing their tongues and offering Americans a far more civil tone in the wake of the tragic shootings in Tucson?
Well, MSNBC's Chris Matthews on Thursday demonstrated just how bygone those days are when he gleefully reminisced about Congressman Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) sticking his neck out with a bold budget proposal months ago only to have President Obama "[punch] his head off" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
For some reason, in the middle of a lengthy "Morning Joe" segment dealing with President Obama's obvious failures as a leader, host Joe Scarborough on Thursday felt the need to bring up conservative talk radio host Rush Limbaugh (video follows with transcript and commentary):
MSNBC's Thomas Roberts implied Tuesday that members of Congress who oppose efforts to inject more government spending into the economy, as President Barack Obama proposed recently, are committing an "act of treason."
"Why don't people look at that as an act of treason?" the daytime anchor asked the Washington Post's Ezra Klein, who shrugged off the accusation.
"I don't think what happens is Mitch McConnell and John Boehner retire to their volcano lair and plot how to doom the American economy," replied the liberal blogger.
Joe Scarborough on Tuesday told his "Morning Joe" co-host an inconvenient truth that she and most of her colleagues in the media just can't handle.
"A president that cannot control 45 backbenchers in the opposing Party in the House of Representatives is too weak to be President of the United States. It is that simple" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Obama advisers, Democrat senators, and terminally stupid ideologues that have been for almost two days blaming Standard and Poor's downgrade of America's debt on the Tea Party have all been ignoring a very inconvenient truth.
According to MSNBC's Lawrence O'Donnell, "Last week's vote for a debt ceiling increase was the most bipartisan vote to increase the debt ceiling we have seen in a very, very long time" (video follows with transcript and commentary):