Bloomberg

By Tom Blumer | August 26, 2013 | 4:55 PM EDT

Anyone remember all the huffing and puffing from the establishment press about how third-quarter economic growth was going to be great — so please stop worrying about how weak the past three quarters (annualized rates of 0.1%, 1.1%, and 1.7%, respectively) have been?

Oops. On Friday, the Census Bureau reported that new-home sales dropped over 20% in July to an annual rate of 394,000 from June's original reading of 497,000, which was itself revised down to 455,000. Today, the bureau revealed that durable goods orders fell sharply in July, bringing about yet another appearance at Bloomberg News of its favorite word during the past five years about the economy, and yet another instance of the stock market's apparent pleasure with bad news for the rest of us:

By Noel Sheppard | August 24, 2013 | 11:51 AM EDT

Stop the presses! Stop the presses!

A liberal media member actually said something negative about Al Sharpton.

Appearing on PBS’s Inside Washington, Bloomberg News’s Margaret Carlson said Friday, “We’ve gone from Martin Luther King to the Reverend Al Sharpton, and as a leader, as he is trying to be this weekend, it’s very dispiriting” (video follows with commentary):

By Tom Blumer | August 19, 2013 | 10:07 AM EDT

A November 15, 2010 blog post by Michael S. Derby at the Wall Street Journal ("San Francisco Fed Official Says QE2 Is Working") told us that "The Federal Reserve‘s recently announced plan to buy $600 billion in Treasury securities to improve economic growth is having a positive effect on growth." The Fed official involved also predicted "the U.S. gross domestic product to come in at 2.5% this year (2010), and at 3.5% next year and 4.5% the year after that." 

Uh, not exactly. Actual GDP results: 2.5% in 2010 (that was a gimme), followed by 1.8% and 2.8% in 2011 and 2012, respectively. Almost three years letter, the San Fran Fed's acknowledged result of that effort at "quantitative easing" — it "added about 0.13 percentage point to real GDP growth in late 2010" — is starkly different, and is only "positive" if you think a football team managing one field goal in four quarters is "positive." Of course, though it should be, the news is getting very little coverage.

By Tom Blumer | August 12, 2013 | 11:04 PM EDT

On Friday, Eric Holder's Department of Justice gave the memory-hole treatment to wildly inflated statistics released last October about the number of cases and the amount of money involved in DOJ's mortgage fraud enforcement efforts.

Bloomberg News reporters who had discovered that the original numbers were suspect had been getting stonewalled for months in their efforts to get answers to their queries, and finally got them through the document-dump route. The differences are stark.

By Andrew Lautz | August 9, 2013 | 3:18 PM EDT

Joe Scarborough offered one of the most interesting ObamaCare metaphors to date on Friday’s Morning Joe, claiming that President Obama’s signature health care reform is “like a zombie” that is “neither alive or completely dead.” The MSNBC host added that the law “just sort of slowly marches on,” amidst a barrage of criticism from both the right and the left.

Scarborough’s panel kicked off the segment by discussing Josh Green’s latest column in Bloomberg Businessweek, in which Green argued that the Obama administration is losing the battle over the ironically-titled Affordable Care Act on Twitter. MSNBC host Thomas Roberts turned the discussion to the fast-approaching open enrollment period for ObamaCare, which begins on October 1:

By Andrew Lautz | August 2, 2013 | 5:15 PM EDT

MSNBC contributors Jonathan Alter and Joy Reid sound much like a good metronome: their commentary never changes, marching on at an endless, fixed pace. Alter and Reid have made a career at the Lean Forward network out of comparing Republicans to slave owners, terrorists, and drunks.

Their latest assault on the GOP came on Friday’s Now, with Reid serving as guest host in place of Alex Wagner. Discussing the latest attempt by Senate Republicans to defund ObamaCare, Alter blasted the “suicide caucus” GOP, claiming “smarter conservatives understand” that shutting down the government over ObamaCare “is suicidal.”

By Andrew Lautz | July 25, 2013 | 5:28 PM EDT

Former Governor Ed Rendell (D-Pa.) drifted a bit too far off MSNBC’s pro-Obama message on Thursday’s Now with Alex Wagner, receiving a strong left-wing rebuke after suggesting that President Obama should be willing to compromise with Republicans on upcoming budgetary battles.

MSNBC contributor Joy Reid likened Republicans to terrorists, claiming that the president’s situation is like “when somebody is threatening to bomb the stadium.” Reid rejected Rendell’s call for bipartisanship, instead pushing her offensive analogy even further:

By Mike Ciandella | July 23, 2013 | 3:16 PM EDT

After this, maybe the Pony Express will be the next thing to come back as part of a green initiative. Environmentalists and Bloomberg Businessweek are advocating that the shipping industry backtrack 100 years and reintroduce the clipper ship. Clipper ships dominated the shipping industry in the mid-1800s, until they were edged out by steam powered ships.

Businessweek ironically labeled their graphic for this July 18 article “Shipping’s High-tech Future.” While these clipper ships at least come with a few 21st Century bells and whistles, like mechanically rotating masts and supplemental biomethane fuel, this push for change doesn’t come from innovation or efficiency. Instead, it answers a new wave of regulations by the International Maritime Organization mandating how much sulfur fuel can be used by ships. Businessweek also claimed that going back to this system that shared a time period with the stage coach would prevent “about 84,000 deaths a year worldwide from marine emissions.”

By Andrew Lautz | July 18, 2013 | 4:48 PM EDT

President Barack Obama touted benefits of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in a speech at the White House Thursday, claiming his signature health care bill is “doing what it’s designed to do.” The president also acknowledged the “glitches” that have impacted the implementation of the law, including his announced one-year delay of a so-called “employer mandate” requiring businesses with more than 50 employees to provide health insurance.

Alex Wagner, and most of her Thursday Now panel, came to the defense of the president over ObamaCare and its implementation, while blasting Republicans for being “reluctant to embrace” the unpopular bill. Wagner invited on White House communications director Jennifer Palmieri to tout the legislation’s purported benefits, but included no conservatives on her panel to challenge Palmieri’s claims.

By Tom Blumer | July 17, 2013 | 11:27 PM EDT

Today, as the wire service AFP reported in a story carried at Yahoo.com, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, in the question and answer exchange after his prepared testimony, told the House Financial Services Committee that "If we were to tighten (monetary) policy, the economy would tank."

That assessment of the economy's fragility qualifies as news, especially given the Obama administration's continued claim that the economy is "continuing to recover at a promising rate." Outlets besides AFP virtually ignored Bernanke's soundbite, which should be considered scary to anyone who realizes that Big Ben can't go on "stimulating" at his current rate forever.

By Andrew Lautz | July 17, 2013 | 4:23 PM EDT

Bloomberg columnist Margaret Carlson tied immigration reform to the shooting of Trayvon Martin on Wednesday’s Morning Joe, claiming Republican voters oppose the Senate immigration bill because they believe “immigrants are, you know, people in hoodies.” While the inflammatory line would no doubt be well-received on a liberal network like MSNBC, it seems somewhat unbecoming of a professional political journalist.

Suffice it to say, Carlson was not called out by her fellow panelists for the hyperbolic comment. Carlson also commended Thomas Friedman’s latest op-ed in The New York Times, entitled “If Churchill Could See Us Now,” in which Friedman – who recently held up China as a paragon of greatness, so long as they don’t emulate the “American Dream” – blasted House Republicans for making this country “un-great”:

By Brad Wilmouth | July 1, 2013 | 1:45 PM EDT

Appearing on Friday's Political Capital show on Bloomberg News, Bloomberg View columnist Margaret Carlson -- formerly of CNN and Time magazine -- charged that Republicans are opposed to "giving dignity to immigrants" as she recounted reluctance by Republicans to entertain granting amnesty to illegal immigrants. Carlson: