Tuesday’s "The Situation Room" featured two segments with aging rockers who voiced their opposition to Bush administration policies - the first with Crosby and Nash (but not Stills), and the second with Paul Simon. In the first segment, CNN correspondent Carol Costello interviewed the two hippie icons, who compared the Bush administration to a "junta." In the second, host Wolf Blitzer asked Simon about his opposition to President Bush’s veto of the expanded SCHIP program.
Both the Crosby/Nash segment and the Simon segment aired in the 5 pm Eastern hour of "The Situation Room." While Crosby and Nash used fiery rhetoric against Bush, Simon used subdued language. All three wore coats and business shirts, compared to the "rocker garb" of their youth.
Costello interviewed Crosby and Nash at Washington National Cathedral, where the two were to perform at a "peace concert." In their rant against President Bush, Crosby and Nash completed each other’s thoughts, as if they were telepathically-linked.
Gore managed to find time amidst celebration this past weekend to post a series of videos on his peer-to-peer video sharing site, Current.tv – including one calling for “government-funded” health care. He is chairman of Current.tv.
Looking more like a bored college student making a video in his dorm room or a clip from Saturday Night Live, Gore was shown proclaiming that health care in America “ought to be a matter of right,” addressing what he thinks to be an “immoral” health care situation.
In the midst of a Wall Street Journal editorial today about proponents' misrepresentations relating to the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) coverage, cost, and financing (characterized as "fiscal fraudulence"), the Journal took shots at blogs that have questioned the SCHIP eligibiliy of Graeme Frost, the 12-year-old boy the Democrats used to deliver a two-minute rebuttal to President Bush's veto of legislation that would vastly expand the program.
The Journal's criticisms of SCHIP expansion and the Democrats' overheated rhetoric after the veto are, on substance, very solid:
After President Bush vetoed Congress's major expansion of the State Children's Health Insurance Program, Nancy Pelosi declared: "President Bush used his cruel veto pen to say, 'I forbid 10 million children from getting the health benefits they deserve.'" As far as political self-parody goes, that one ought to enter the record books.
It's wrong on the facts, for one, which Speaker Pelosi knows. ..... The Schip bill was not some all-or-nothing proposition: A continuing resolution fully funds the program through mid-November, so none of the 6.6 million recipients will lose coverage.
David Herszenhorn's front-page "Political Memo" for Wednesday's New York Times was devoted to the fight over Graeme Frost, the boy pushed forward by the Democrats to deliver the response to Bush's weekly radio address on the State Children's Health Insurance Program (S-CHIP).
The inimitable Mark Steyn is one of several conservative writers unhappy with Democrats "desperate enough to send a boy to do a man's job."
Herszenhorn accused Republicans and "conservative bloggers" of attacking the boy and his family. While not as bad as the local coverage in the Baltimore Sun as outlined earlier by Ken Shepherd, there is a hostile tone:
On September 29, 2007, Baltimore 12-year old Graeme Frost became the Democratic poster child, literally, for SCHIP. Frost read the Democratic Party's official response to the president's weekly radio address, attacking President Bush for his veto of a Democratic-sponsored bill to balloon federal spending on the 10-year old program.
The Baltimore Sun ran a story that morning noting young Graeme Frost's brush with political football history, and two days earlier ran a gauzy profile on Graeme's mom and dad and their push for the Democratic SCHIP expansion here. But now that conservative bloggers have been raising questions about the portrayal by Democrats and the Baltimore Sun of the family's financial plight, the Sun is hitting back by attacking conservatives bloggers as heartless and obsessive, Michelle Malkin noted on her blog.
The media piled on when President Bush used his veto pen on this children's health insurance bill. They tried to drop the absolute moral authority bomb on it big time and paint him as not caring about children. Now it looks like a little backfire is on the horizon.
On September 29th, 12 year old Graeme Frost of Maryland got to do the Democrats’ radio address, in which he told his story of how he and his sister were seriously injured in a car accident, and if it hadn’t been for SCHIP, they wouldn’t be here today. The Baltimore Sun did a story on the family, in which it stated the family couldn’t get health insurance through their work.
"Bonnie Frost works for a medical publishing firm; her husband, Halsey, is a woodworker. They are raising their four children on combined income of about $45,000 a year. Neither gets health insurance through work."
Retired steelworker Steve Skvara tugged at the heartstrings of liberals everywhere when he asked Democratic presidential candidates at an August debate sponsored by the AFL-CIO, "What's wrong with America? And what will you do to change it?" The underlying premise of his question, that something's wrong with this nation because taxpayers aren't picking up the tab for his spouse's health insurance, made him an instant celebrity in certain circles.
Chris Matthews invited Mr. Skvara to his MSNBC Hardball program and told him, "You're a great American to speak so well to the needs of this country." Matthews later fawned, ""Well, can I pay tribute — can I pay tribute to you, sir?" The CBS Evening News described Skvara's query as a time when "a moment of truth breaks through a political campaign event." Since his debut, Mr. Skvara's popped up in the media numerous times, including Oprah Winfrey's show.
CNN’s Jack Cafferty, in a "Question of the Hour" segment on Wednesday’s "The Situation Room," offered a loaded question involving President Bush’s veto of a proposed expansion of the SCHIP program. "President Bush has increased the national debt by trillions of dollars. Why would he veto a bill providing health insurance for children?"
Cafferty’s question came 10 minutes into the 5 pm Eastern hour of "The Situation Room." Before he asked that question, Cafferty detailed that President Bush’s veto of SCHIP "was cast very quietly this morning behind closed doors. No fanfare, no news coverage," and the reasons the President listed for his veto. He then added that "this is the same man who will soon go to Congress and ask for another $190 billion to continue that glorious war in Iraq." Cafferty also outlined how under President Bush’s leadership, the ceiling for the national debt has been increased for the fifth time in seven years to $9.8 trillion, and how apparently, President Bush "has borrowed more money from foreign governments and banks since taking office than this country's first 42 presidents combined."
Associated Press reporter Jennifer Loven practically blew kisses to the Left with her biased coverage of President Bush's veto of the Democratic proposal to boost SCHIP by a whopping $35 billion over five years.:
WASHINGTON -- President Bush, in a sharp confrontation with Congress, on Wednesday vetoed a bipartisan bill that would have dramatically expanded children's health insurance.
It was only the fourth veto of Bush's presidency, and one that some Republicans feared could carry steep risks for their party in next year's elections. The Senate approved the bill with enough votes to override the veto, but the margin in the House fell short of the required number.
Ah yes, the old paint-the-conservatives-as-the-bad-guy trick. Bush's veto is [cue ominous music] a "sharp confrontation" that prevents kids from getting health care and is sure to doom the GOP to wander the electoral desert.
Those are all nice partisan talking points, but you'll notice no quote marks. It's all Loven's spin.
Earlier today President Bush vetoed a bill to expand the federal State Children's Health Insurance Plans (SCHIP) by $35 billion over five years. Reporting the story, CNN.com pulled out all the stops, showing a cutesy photo of kid protesters on Lafayette Square (pictured at right) and rounding up a negative quote from an otherwise conservative Republican:
Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah was among those Republicans who split from the president. "It's very difficult for me to be against a man I care so much for," he told his colleagues on the Senate floor before the vote. "It's unfortunate that the president has chosen to be on what, to me, is clearly the wrong side of this issue."
A Washington Post-ABC News poll conducted September 27-30 found 72 percent of those surveyed support an increase in spending on the program, with 25 percent opposed. The poll's margin of error was 3 percentage points.
Just over a week after ABC News exploited a crying mother to push an expansion of federal health insurance “for kids,” a story which matched the media's overall emotion over facts reporting on the topic, on Monday's World News anchor Charles Gibson highlighted how “a new ABC News/Washington Post poll finds opposition to more money for Iraq and support for more money for children's health insurance.” Citing a “guns versus butter debate,” Gibson noted how “fewer than three in ten Americans back the President's request for another $190 billion for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, while seven in ten Americans support the increased funding for children's health insurance that the President says he'll veto.”
Cherie Black of the Seattle P-I took the opportunity to inform readers of a liberal cancer patient's political stunt: putting out a personals ad looking for a Canadian man to marry, for health care, of course.
But while Black breezed past Canadian angst over American Jeanne Sather's hopes of cashing in on love and free health care, the P-I reporter failed to mention a prominent Canadian pol who recently went to the United States for cancer care.
OTTAWA–Belinda Stronach, the MP for Newmarket-Aurora and former cabinet minister, travelled outside Canada's health-care system to California for some of her breast cancer treatment earlier this year.
Stronach, diagnosed in the spring with a type of breast cancer that required a mastectomy and breast reconstruction, went to California in June at her Toronto doctor's suggestion, a spokesperson confirmed.
When liberal journalists put on their political pundit hats to ostensibly handicap the policy stances of Republican politicians, you can rest assured that conservative or center-right stances will almost always be panned as political/electoral suicide.
Time magazine's Karen Tumulty is no exception in her recent Swampland blog post, "SCHIP: A Really Dumb Fight for Bush to Pick." in which the veteran reporter took President Bush to task for his veto threat for Democratic legislation that seeks to expand the size and mandate of the federally-backed State Children's Health Insurance Plans (SCHIP).
A columnist from a Chicago suburban paper has equated smoking to abortion in order to explain away her support of an abortion mill struggling to open in Aurora, Illinois. Saying that since smoking is legal, and it “kills” people, why shouldn't abortion be legal, we find her reasoning is strained and absurd. If there’s a more ridiculous comparison out there, I'd like to see it. Following her tortured logic, we should outlaw everything that might kill someone if we also outlaw abortion -- which WILL kill someone.
There are so many specious arguments that this supporter of infanticide tries to use in this article to support abortion that it must spin the head of most readers. The whole thing has a feel like the author of the column, Joni Hirsch-Blackman, is throwing just about everything she can think of against a wall to see what sticks quite regardless of any logic or sense to it all.
After simple-mindedly explaining that "Tobacco kills," which in reality is not a literal truth because often times it does not, Hirsch-Blackman explains that, while she "sneers" at smokers, she would never protest against it because it is legal.
This story about Ohio has nationwide application. That's because Ohio's media have been awfully quiet about the tax increases that will be necessary if the Buckeye State's version of "universal health care" comes to pass. The bill was introduced on April 25, according to this Ohio Legislative Services Commission bill analysis, and has flown under the radar ever since. I expect that national Old Media scrutiny of the Second Coming of Hillarycare will also be minimal.
My interest in the so-called "Ohio Health Care Plan" was perked when I heard an ad from the Ohio Chapter of the National Federation of Independent Businesses (NFIB) claiming that the plan would cost Ohio taxpayers $50 billion.
$50 billion. With a "b." In one state.
That's over $4,400 for every man, woman, and child in Ohio, or over $17,000 for a family of four.
A separate fiscal analysis by the Legislative Services Commission is pending, so I thought that the NFIB might be engaging in a bit of reckless hyperbole.
On Tuesday morning’s Early Show, CBS anchor Harry Smith led into a Hillary Clinton interview with a poll that sounded like it had been commissioned by the Clinton team: "In a new CBS News poll, 66 percent of voters said her health care experience in Bill Clinton’s administration is actually a strength for her. As we know, her efforts in the 1990s failed; 52 percent of those questioned said it wasn’t her fault."
But dig into the CBS poll, and see what Smith left out: when respondents asked if they were confident in "Hillary’s ability to make the right decisions about health care, or are you uneasy about her approach," more people (48 percent) said they were uneasy about Hillary’s health agenda, compared to 42 percent who said they were confident about her health care decision-making.
So her skeletal "plan" is out. At the same time, there's a story in a "progressive" publication claiming that Mrs. Clinton really didn't have much to do with what came to be known as Hillarycare in 1993-1994.
In what should henceforth be known as a Hillary Howler, Paul Starr, co-editor of the American Prospect, tries to convince us that Hillary was, in essence, a figurehead (bolds are mine):
Though the media scarcely registered it at the time, (Bill) Clinton had described this approach in a speech and referred to it in the presidential debates. Moreover, he saw health-care reform through the prism of economic policy, believed that reducing the long-term growth in health costs was a national imperative, and insisted that even while making coverage universal, health-care reform had to bring down future costs below current projections for both the government and the private economy. Among Clinton's close advisors, Ira Magaziner championed the view that these aims were achievable. When he became the director of the health-reform effort and Hillary the chair, their job was not to choose a policy, but to develop the one that the president had already adopted.
On Tuesday’s "Good Morning America," Diane Sawyer interviewed Hillary Clinton about health care and recycled campaign talking points that her fellow 2008 Democrat, John Edwards, has been peddling. According to Sawyer, upon his election, Edwards will "cut off health care for Congress so that they don't have health care while the rest of America doesn’t." The ABC anchor earnestly followed up by wondering, "Would you do that or is that a gimmick?" Clinton responded by observing the implausibility of the concept. She patiently explained to Sawyer that Edwards would "have to get Congress to vote for that, of course."
The Sawyer interview did contain some surprises, however. The GMA host featured two clips from the 2008 Republican hopefuls challenging Mrs. Clinton. But the eight minute and 19 second segment also continued GMA’s habit of offering generous amounts of time to the New York senator. In March, the ABC program featured Hillary for over 30 minutes during a town hall style infomercial. During Sawyer’s interview on Tuesday, she also asked Clinton emotional, softball queries. Over video of Clinton at a ‘93 health care event, the morning show host wondered, "What do you wish this woman we're looking at now on the screen had known then that you now know, since it went down in flames?"
As if she were president already, Hillary Clinton went on CNN’s "American Morning" as well as the morning shows of the "Big Three" networks on Tuesday to sell her new health care proposals, a day after their unveiling. At the close of the "American Morning" interview, co-host John Roberts brought up the controversial "Betray Us" ad by MoveOn.org. He twice asked the junior senator from New York if she wanted to distance herself from the ad. Both times, she skirted the question by talking about General Petraeus and his record of service, instead of the ad itself.
Besides Roberts, Harry Smith of CBS News, ABC’s Diane Sawyer, and NBC’s Matt Lauer interviewed Clinton on Tuesday morning. Out of the four,Roberts was the only one who brought up the issue of the ad.
A transcript of the exchange between Roberts and Senator Clinton, which took place near the bottom of the 7 am Eastern hour of Tuesday’s "American Morning."
Delivering his best Michael Moore in "Sicko," impersonation NBC's Matt Lauer hit Hillary Clinton from the left on health care reform on Tuesday's "Today" show. Appearing in the first-half hour of "Today, Clinton was tagged repeatedly by Lauer as he worried that Hillary "watered down" her new health-care reform plan and feared Hillary had sold out to the insurance industry as he wondered: "Are you losing some leverage in asking these insurance companies to get on board and make tough choices?"
The following are all of Lauer's questions, on health care, to the Senator from New York and her responses as they occurred on the September 18 "Today" show:
Matt Lauer: "Senator Hillary Clinton is in Washington this morning. Senator, good morning to you."
Even as the words were leaving his mouth, Joe Scarborough acknowledged that he was going to get "killed by conservative bloggers." And being the obliging sorts we are here at NewsBusters . . .
Interviewing Hillary Clinton on today's "Morning Joe," Scarborough's performance was one long paean to her perfection, coupled with a mea culpa for the wrongs that he and other Republicans visited on the Clintons during the '90s.
The CBS and ABC evening newscasts led Monday night -- even before O.J. Simpson -- by trumpeting Hillary Clinton's universal health care plan, a proposal fill-in CBS anchor Harry Smith insisted addresses a vital need: “It's a huge problem. An estimated 47 million are not covered.” Of course, CBS didn't bother explaining how a significant number of those can afford insurance or are illegal aliens. ABC's medical doctor, Tim Johnson, who back in 1993 called Bill and Hillary Clinton “almost heroes in my mind for finally facing up to the terrible problems we have with our current health care system,” praised Senator Clinton's new plan: “Every industrialized country in this world that is successful with health care -- often more successful than we are -- has a partnership between government and the private sector.”
Smith led the CBS Evening News: “She tried to do it as First Lady. Now, as a presidential candidate, she is trying again. Hillary Clinton today outlined a new plan for making sure every American has health insurance. It's a huge problem. An estimated 47 million are not covered.” Reporter Jim Axelrod asserted “Clinton doesn't remind reminding people of her past painful experience in health care reform” because “in the latest CBS News poll, 66 percent of registered voters say her health care experience will help her.” Charles Gibson led ABC's World News: “We start with Senator Clinton, now trying to get to the White House by promising to do something she couldn't do when she was in the White House -- come up with a plan to provide health care for all Americans that would be accepted by Congress.”
Is Cuba threatening ABC News? Why won't the media report that ABC's John Stossel stated the Cuban government's Central Committee “called members of the ABC Cuban bureau in for questioning?” (emphasis mine throughout)
After Stossel challenged “Sicko” director Michael Moore's claims that Cuba's health care system is superior to America's, which resulted in a stammering Moore reversing years of crowing about the island's excellent “free” universal health care, Cuba showed its true totalitarian colors.
Yesterday, we brought you a classic example of How Liberals Think. Step one: identify a problem. Step two: propose "massive" government welfare programs to address it. The column was plucked from the pages of the Boston Globe. Today, the Globe's Big Apple corporate parent, the New York Times, gives another good illustration of the mindset.
As the title of its editorial indicates, Help for the $82,000 Family makes the case that families earning that much, or perhaps even more -- in excess of 300% of the poverty level -- should be entitled to participate in a healthcare welfare program known as S-chip.
NBC’s "Today" Show’s heart-touching feature on Geraldine Ferraro’s blood cancer survival on Friday morning gave a hint at the ulterior motive that they had for running it. Substitute host Ann Curry introduced the segment, a "Today’s Update" feature by gushing, "She’s always been a ground-breaker, and she is still at it."
In the segment which ran during the 8 am hour of "Today," NBC News national correspondent Jamie Gangel interviewed Ferraro about her nine-year-long struggle against a type of blood cancer called multiple myeloma. Gangel, in her retrospective look at Ferraro’s 1984 run for vice-president, which introduced the segment, reported, "In 1984, Geraldine Ferraro made history as the first woman picked to run for vice president.... Twenty-three years later, she's making history again, but this time, medical history."
Earlier this month, ABC News's Rick Klein reported on the network's "Political Radar" Web site:
When an Iowa resident asked former senator John Edwards Thursday whether the United States should follow the Cuban healthcare model, the 2004 vice presidential contender deflected the question by saying he didn't know enough to answer the question.
Anyone who follows the MSM knows that Cuba is a virtual paradise. A land of free health care, universal literacy and low infant-mortality rates where, as Andrea Mitchell has explained to us, kids don't care about freedom and the only big problems are those caused by the U.S. Yes, Cuba is the sort of place no one would ever want to leave. Certainly not to go to live in the United States, where, as everyone knows thanks to Michael Moore's "Sicko," health care is so bad that 9-11 heroes are forced to seek help from Havana.
The Census Bureau announced a drop in the poverty rate, but NBC and, especially CBS, on Tuesday night managed to turn the good news into bad by emphasizing an increase in the number of Americans without health insurance while ABC, in contrast, portrayed the decrease in poverty as good news. “A bright spot of economic news today,” fill-in ABC anchor Kate Snow announced, “the percentage of Americans living in poverty dropped last year” by “three-tenths of a percent from the year before.” Reporter Barbara Pinto actually acknowledged some positive trends during the Bush years, pointing to how “in the past four years, the country has added nearly 7 million jobs. And in those four years, the average household income has risen about $700.” Pinto didn't ignore liberal class-warfare arguments, but after a left-winger asserted “there's very little that trickles down to those at the bottom,” Pinto countered: “Obviously, some of that growth is trickling down.”
Though the AP headlined its story, “U.S. poverty rate declines significantly,” NBC anchor Brian Williams reported it dropped “a bit” and CBS anchor Katie Couric relayed how “the poverty rate is down slightly.” And while most of those in poverty manage to have many comforts of life, from good-sized homes to cars, Couric insisted poverty level income is “hardly enough for food and housing, much less other items like health insurance.” Wyatt Andrews devoted a full story to “the highest number of uninsured Americans in 20 years: 47 million without health insurance.” Andrews failed to note that 16 million of the uninsured are illegals or on Medicaid while most people are uninsured for only short periods.
A year and a half after the CBS Evening News celebrated the then-upcoming Massachusetts mandate requiring everyone to buy health insurance and the state subsidizing it for those with lower incomes -- “Imagine this: Virtually everyone guaranteed health insurance coverage. It's happening in one state, and it could be a model for the rest” -- Friday's newscast found it has come up short. Anchor Katie Couric teased the upcoming story on how the law didn't go far enough in providing subsidies, “Universal health insurance: It is supposed to mean everyone is covered. But in the only state that has it, hundreds of thousands are not. That story next.” Introducing the subsequent story, Couric touted how former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney “signed a landmark law mandating universal health insurance, the only state so far to do so. So you would think everyone in Massachusetts is now covered. But it is not working out that way.”
Reporter Wyatt Andrews highlighted how state-subsidized coverage saved one man's life, trumpeting that as “the state's achievement. Out of 400,000 uninsured residents last year, around 170,000 now have insurance.” But, he continued, “the gap that remains is huge. It includes some 130,000 young adults, most of them middle income men who have to pay their own premiums. They either don't want insurance or can't afford it.” For expert advocacy, Andrews turned to the head of a liberal group, Health Care for All: “Health care advocate John McDonough praises the state for a good start but says that gap in affordability has to be filled.”
In a recent blog post CBS’s Wyatt Andrews gushes about Massachusetts new health care plan that requirespeople to purchase health care. Can’t afford it? Well naturally the state will pick up the tab.
Andrews begins by discussing his trip to Fenway Park, home of the Boston Red Sox, and how “sitting directly behind one of the dozens of beer stands” was a kiosk promoting the new plan. Andrews explains it like this: