Well, self-confessed Second Amendment foe Alex Wagner seems determined to not let Monday's deadly school shooting go to waste. For a third day in a row, Wagner complained about the nation's political climate when it comes to gun control legislation, even as Wagner seems to concede that new legislation would do little if anything to prevent school shootings from actually happening.
Sure, there is really "no way, theoretically or otherwise" that yesterday's school shooting in Chardon, Ohio, could have been prevented, self-confessed Second Amendment opponent MSNBC's Alex Wagner noted in a closing commentary on her eponymous program this afternoon. She then immediately delving into a gripe that America's fruited plain is riddled with incredibly lax gun laws thanks to that most evil of evil bogeymen, the "gun lobby" [video follows page break; MP3 audio here]:
In light of Monday's deadly school shooting in Ohio, both CNN host Piers Morgan and liberal comedian Bill Maher embarked on a lengthy liberal screed against the current gun laws in America. Maher went so far as to castigate gun owners for making their ownership a "theology," on Monday night's Piers Morgan Tonight.
"And Rick Santorum likes to talk about theology. This is a theology in this country. Guns are a religion. They're next to godliness for a lot of people," he ranted. Host Piers Morgan found America's gun laws "incomprehensible" and balked at the "ideological dream" of the right to bear arms. [Video below the break. Click here for audio.]
On Thursday's NBC Today, chief medical editor Nancy Snyderman scolded Rick Santorum for a recent humorous campaign ad that depicted Mitt Romney firing a mud-filled paint ball gun at a cardboard cut-out of the former Pennsylvania Senator: "I'm sick of guns. I'm sick of the violence. I'm sick of all of it. And I know it's tongue-in-cheek....I don't like it." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
Snyderman made the declaration during the Today's Professionals panel discussion on the show, which prompted attorney Star Jones to chime in that the ad made all the GOP candidates look like the Three Stooges: "...it does go to the whole Larry, Curly and Moe mentality of the Republican primary over the last few months. It's been almost like joking."
Well, let's see. During the early days of the Clinton administration, we had the sad spectacle of Treasury aide Josh Steiner telling Senators investigating the Whitewater real estate deals and the Resolution Trust Corporation that that he written untrue things in his diary, i.e., that "essentially .... he had lied to his diary." During the Paula Jones trial, the jury was entertained (members are said to have laughed) when Bill Clinton tried to answer a question by saying that "It depends on what the meaning of the word 'is' is."
Soon, another insufferable howler may eventually enter the lexicon, courtesy of Monty Wilkinson, former deputy chief of staff to Attorney General Eric Holder, namely, "I lied in an email when I wrote that 'I've alerted the AG.'"
Pete Yost's Friday evening story at the Associated Press, also known to yours truly as the Administration's Press, on the latest development in the Operation Fast and Furious scandal (that's my word, certainly not Yost's) has a "this is a boring story, don't read it" headline ("Prosecutor intends to take 5th if called in probe"), followed by an opening sentence which acts as if it has nothing to do with at least 300 Mexican citizens, a slain Border patrol agent, and thousands of disappearing guns.
Yost's opening sentence: "A federal prosecutor in Arizona intends to remain silent if called for questioning in a congressional probe of a problem-plagued gun smuggling investigation." Yep, Yost wants readers who don't get past the first paragraph to believe that it's only the "investigation" that's messed up beyond all recognition, not what happened in the Fast and Furious operation. Here's more from Pete's pathetic piece (bolds are mine throughout this post):
Listeners to the Bill Press radio show on Thursday morning -- and there were probably not very many -- must have winced at the complete political schizophrenia or logical incoherence of the self-proclaimed "Mr. Gun Control." Press asked the audience if 18-year-old Oklahoma mom Sarah McKinley was right to shoot a home invader armed with a knife to protect her little boy? He said "damn right" -- and explained how he also favors banning all handguns and "assault rifles." So, um, how would Knife-Threatened Teen Mom defend herself in Bill Press's ideal America?
"I gotta tell you I am Mr. Gun Control, okay?I think there are too many guns. They’re too easy to get. Most people don’t need them," Press declared. "For hunting only I would say as long as they’re licensed and you know how to use them, that’s okay. But for any other reason, I would ban all handguns. I would ban all assault rifles. I’m as strong as you can get." [MP3 audio available here]
Matt Lauer became a regular co-host of NBC’s Today show on January 6, 1997 and while his partners have changed over the years from Katie Couric, to Meredith Vieira and most recently Ann Curry, he’s joined them in regularly serving viewers a hearty portion of liberal spin to go along with their morning cup of coffee.
Over the years Lauer has treated his Democratic guests with light and frothy questions, as was the case when he asked Barack Obama how he would be able to “manage” the “expectations” of those hoping he would be their “Savior” and “Messiah.” In contrast he’s hit Republicans with bitter queries about their ability to lead, like the time he asked then Senator-Elect Rand Paul if Republicans, after having rode a “wave of anger and energy” into office in the 2010 midterms, would then “govern in Washington with anger?”
Below are just a few examples of Lauer's bias over the years. For a more extensive collection please visit his Profile in Bias page. (video after the jump)
Well, that didn't take long. It took the Washington Post just four days into the new year to exploit a murder to bewail "easy access to firearms."
In "Taking off the safety," the Post editorial board today admitted that while "[t]here is no way to know whether tougher gun restrictions would have prevented" Benjamin Colton Barnes from obtaining the gun with which he murdered U.S. National Park Ranger Margaret Anderson during a routine traffic stop on New Year's Day, that "it is beyond dispute that easy access to firearms can quickly turn a simple argument or difficult situation into a deadly confrontation."
Imagine the media attention that would be garnered if any non-Muslim in the U.S. did something as sensationalistically violent and dramatic as to dress as Santa Claus and commit a mass murder against his own family at a Christmas gathering.
But this past weekend, a Muslim man in Texas who was reportedly angry at his family for becoming too westernized committed just such an egregious act, resulting in the deaths of seven people, as documented this morning by FNC's Fox and Friends. (Video below)
It seems that if you're a New York Times reporter on a mission to prove something you think must be obvious and your research leads to the exact opposite result from what you smugly expected, you forge ahead and try to pretend that you proved your point anyway.
At least that how it seems to have worked out for Times reporter Michael Luo in a report appearing in Tuesday's print edition which tried to show readers how one state which allows residents to carry concealed weapons with a permit is allegedly allowing large numbers of dangerous people to possess them. But the way the math works out, North Carolina, the state which the Times investigated, is far safer than many jurisdictions without such laws, even given the problems cited with pulling permits from those who have committed crimes and should not still be holding them. Additionally, the murder rate among North Carolinians who don't have permits or associate with those who do is higher than it is among permit holders. Here is Luo's pathetic attempt to make a case which can't be made:
Former New York City police commissioner Bill Bratton brought his pro-gun control agenda into a segment about the FBI's latest crime statistics on Tuesday's Early Show on CBS, blaming the "the insanity of the lack of gun control laws in this country" for an increase in police deaths during 2011.
Anchor Erica Hill introduced Bratton as the "chairman of Kroll, a worldwide investigative company. He's also the former chief of police in Los Angeles, New York City, and Boston." During most of the segment, Hill and co-anchor Chris Wragge asked their guest for his take about the overall decrease in violent crime, according to the FBI statistics.
She is the Fox News Channel body language expert who frequently appears on The O'Reilly Factor. Reiman would have a field day analyzing the bizarre body, facial, and hand twitchings of Assistant Attorney General Ronald Weich who sat behind Attorney General Eric Holder as he was being grilled by Representative Sandy Adams about personal emails that Holder might have sent or received on the topic of Operation Fast & Furious. Incredibly, even though this was easily the most dramatic moment in both form and substance of the hearing, and possibly all these Fast & Furious hearings, it was completely overlooked by the media as you can check for yourself in Google News.
The fireworks begin at the 4:50 mark in this video and the bizarre Weich body language follows the 5:00 mark. Also note the frequent audible "throat clearings" by Weich who twice rises out of his seat:
Washington Post TV columnist Lisa de Moraes couldn't resist inserting a poke at conservatives in a sarcastic Thursday piece on a recent cannonball incident involving the Discovery Channel hit Mythbusters. De Moraes emphasized how the popular series is a "darling of conservative Republicans" and overreached to connect right-leaning politics to the wayward projectile that crashed into a house.
The writer led her column, "'Mythbusters' misfires with cannonball stunt" by referencing the latest annual survey from Experian-Simmons, which included a statistic on the favorite and least favorite TV programs of "liberal Democrats" and "conservative Republicans." De Moraes hinted that the mishap was symbolic of the supposedly destructive partisanship that liberals often accuse conservatives of engaging in:
Brand new MSNBC host and Second Amendment critic Alex Wagner devoted a segment of her November 15 Now with Alex Wagner program to express her exasperation at the fact that she's far left of the American public on the issue of gun control. Wagner prefaced a panel discussion with footage of an ABC News interview with Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, who was critically injured in a January shooting.
"Support for handguns, or rather support for a handgun ban has gone down," Wagner noted as she opened her panel discussion, entitled onscreen "Out of Control?". "In October of 2011, it was at 26 percent. In 1959, it was at 60 percent."
His new colleague Alex Wagner doesn't even think there's a question about it.
"I'm going to be pilloried for this," the Now with Alex Wagner host told Bill Maher on the November 4 edition of HBO's Real Time, explaining that she thinks the Constitution should be amended to take out the individual's right to keep and bear arms (h/t Real Clear Politics; video at link):
Obama administration Attorney General Eric Holder was grilled by Republicans on Capitol Hill Tuesday about the Justice Department’s botched sting Operation Fast and Furious, which allowed guns to flow untracked into the U.S. and Mexico, putting thousands of illegally purchased firearms on the street, one of which led to the death of Border Patrol agent Brian Terry in the Arizona desert.
Republican questioners even forced Holder to admit his initial statements to Congress about his knowledge of the gun-walking were "inaccurate.” But the New York Times's print edition completely skipped it.
If you are familiar with that name, the first thing to pop into your mind would probably be Watergate. And, indeed, the very first sentence of Haldeman's Wikipedia entry mentions that scandal.
For the folks who now know the name of the Assistant Attorney General for the DOJ Criminal Division, Operation Fast & Furious would come to mind right away. However, this scandal that Breuer is best known for is absent from his Wikipedia page.
For today's "Gut Check" segment on MSNBC's 2 p.m. Eastern NewsNation program, substitute host Craig Melvin interviewed a South Carolina sheriff who is urging women in his county to carry a concealed handgun for protection against would-be rapists.
During his Skype interview with Chuck Wright, Melvin worried about the poor dead would-be rapists being checked into the Spartanburg County morgue without the benefit of a trial (emphasis mine, video follows page break):
The Fox News host pressed the journalist on her revelation from Tuesday's Laura Ingraham Show, that associate White House communications director Eric Schultz "screamed and cussed" at her for her reporting on the controversy. Attkisson would only state that "the conversation, as you reported it, was accurate," and later added that "the point is really not the content of that. The point is, story-wise, it seems significant and important how people handle questions, and how they react when you ask questions" [video clips available below the jump]
Mark Hemingway of The Weekly Standardreported on Wednesday afternoon that he had attempted to interview CBS News correspondent Sharyl Attkisson about her dogged coverage of the ongoing "Fast and Furious" controversy, but was told that she was "unavailable." Attkisson has been the sole journalist on the Big Three networks regularly covering the story, particular during the past several weeks.
Hemingway described in his blog entry that he called CBS News to interview the correspondent, but was "told by CBS News senior vice president of communications Sonya McNair that Attkisson would be unavailable for interviews all week. When I asked why Attkisson would be unavailable, McNair would not say." On Tuesday, the reporter revealed on Laura Ingraham's radio show that Obama administration officials had "screamed and cussed" at her over her coverage of the story.
CBS's Sharyl Attkisson revealed on Tuesday's "Laura Ingraham Show" the extent of the rage directed at her from the Obama administration for her reporting on the "Fast and Furious" controversy: "The DOJ woman was just yelling at me. A guy from the White House on Friday night literally screamed at me and cussed at me." Attkisson also stated that "they think I'm unfair and biased by pursuing it."
The journalist appeared on the conservative talk show host's program at the bottom of the 9 am Eastern hour to talk about her latest reporting on the growing Justice Department scandal. She highlighted on Monday's "CBS Evening News" that "new documents...show Attorney General Eric Holder was sent briefings on the controversial 'Fast and Furious' operation as far back as July 2010. That directly contradicts his [May 3, 2011] statement to Congress."]
"CBS Evening News" distinguished itself among the Big Three networks on Monday by devoting an entire segment to the ongoing controversy over the "Fast and Furious" program, where the federal government smuggled guns to Mexican drug cartels. NBC hasn't mentioned the story on its news programs since April 17, while the last time ABC covered it was a news brief on June 15.
Correspondent Sharyl Attkisson reported that "new documents obtained by CBS News show Attorney General Eric Holder was sent briefings on the controversial 'Fast and Furious' operation as far back as July 2010. That directly contradicts his [May 3, 2011] statement to Congress." After playing a sound bite from Holder's testimony, Attkisson continued that "at least ten months before that hearing, Holder began receiving frequent memos discussing 'Fast and Furious.' They came from...Assistant Attorney General Lanny Breuer."
In early May of this year, Attorney General Eric Holder told Rep. Darrell Issa's House committee that he was "not sure of the exact date" he learned of Fast and Furious, but that he "probably heard about Fast and Furious for the first time over the last few weeks.
Now, CBS News has obtained documents showing that Holder was sent briefings on the controversial operation as early as July 2010, nearly a year before he claimed to Congress to have known about the gunwalking program. While the Justice Department claims that "Holder misunderstood that question from the committee – he did know about Fast and Furious – just not the details," the video of the May 4 committee meeting suggests otherwise.
Do you think the media coverage of Holder's lie to Congress will be as minimal as their coverage of the Solyndra scandal? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.
It would appear that there is a reason beyond alleged "journalistic integrity" why the New York Times hasn't pulled its error-riddled, only partially corrected mid-August story by Eric Lichtblau ("A Businessman in Congress Helps His District and Himself") about California Republican Congressman Darrell Issa.
Issa has identified 13 serious errors in the Times story, the cumulative effect of which, in the words of Powerline's John Hinderaker several weeks ago, show the story to be "nothing but lies and fabrications ... (which) never should have been published." The Times has corrected three. Though it appears to be dead wrong on the other ten, it hasn't given any further quarter and won't pull the story. Its Public Editor, as Clay Waters at NewsBusters noted, has found Issa's request for a retraction "troubling."
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.]