The Morning Joe panel was tough today on the Obama White House for threatening Bob Woodward by telling him he would "regret" his reporting that it was the Obama administration that had devised the sequester, In the course of the opening segment, various panel members described the Obama White House response as "mickey mouse," "pathetic" and "childish."
But at the same time, a theme emerged that there was nothing unusual about a White House trying to intimidate reporters. Mark Halperin said "the Bush White House regularly would engage in the same kind of tactics." And Joe Scarborough and Andrea Mitchell shared stories of having been threatened by the Bush and Reagan White Houses, respectively. Andrea named names. Scarborough did not. H/t readers Ray R. and cobokat. View the video after the jump.
In a closing commentary on Wednesday, Hardball's Chris Matthews ranted that opposing gun control could lead to the assassination of a future American president or politician. Matthews fumed that he supports new restrictions because "the next mass shooter could well emerge out of this pack" of the "politically nutty."
He lobbied, "Check the shooters of John F. Kennedy and Jerry Ford, who got shot at twice. Look at the men that shot Bobby Kennedy and Martin Luther King and Malcolm X and George Wallace. They all had political motives and they all had guns." In the very next sentence, Matthews sneered, "And if you're not against this movement, you're with it." [See video below. MP3 audio here.]
MSNBC’s propensity to selectively edit video to smear conservatives has reached a new low. Speaking on her self-titled show on February 21, host Rachel Maddow openly admitted to playing edited footage of Senator John McCain to smear the Arizona Republican.
Speaking last week, Maddow aired footage of McCain addressing a constituent whose son was killed last year at a movie theater in Aurora, Colorado, who spoke to Senator McCain about her belief that “These assault weapons allow a shooter to fire many rounds without having to reload. These weapons do not belong on our streets.” [See video after jump. MP3 audio here.]
The Washington Post's Bob Woodward continues to break ranks with his Obama-loving colleagues by holding the President's feet to the fire concerning the looming budget sequester.
Just days after he wrote a piece in the Post exposing the inconvenient truth that it was indeed the White House that initially proposed sequestration during the 2011 debt ceiling debate, Woodward appeared on MSNBC's Morning Joe Wednesday saying that Obama's decision to not send the USS Truman to the Persian Gulf as a result of these deliberations was "a kind of madness that I haven't seen in a long time" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Chris Matthews featured her as a "Rising Star," someone who with more seasoning might someday entertain a presidential run. But newly-elected Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane came across as more of a not-ready-for-prime-time-deer-in-the-headlights.
Appearing on today's Hardball, Kane came out with this mind-boggler: "I think the people of Pennsylvania would accept a limit on the amount of clips. You know, I believe and I think a lot of people feel the same way that you don't have a right to go into a classroom and take down a class of children in under a minute." Really going out on a limb there, Rising Star! View the video after the jump.
In what has become a recurring theme on MSNBC, Morning Joe host Joe Scarborough railed against the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) for failing to invite Governor Chris Christie (R-N.J) to the event. On the February 26 edition of the program the self-described “true conservative” Scarborough slammed CPAC as not being about winning elections, but instead being an echo-chamber that focuses on “hate” and “anger.”
The segment began with liberal co-host Brzezinski expressing shock over the line-up of speakers at CPAC, including Sen.Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and former Alaska governor Sarah Palin, prompting Scarborough to throw out that, “It shows just how sick some elements of the conservative movement are.” [See video after jump. MP3 audio here.]
It's hard to imagine that Nicholas Confessore and his editors at the overwhelmingly Obama-friendly New York Times were just making things up when he reported over the weekend in a Page A1 story that the Obama campaign's Organizing For America operation, now "rebooted" as the supposedly independent Organizing For Action, "will rely heavily on a small number of deep-pocketed donors ... whose influence on political campaigns Mr. Obama once deplored," granting them quarterly access to the Obama if they raise $500,000 or more.
According to Charlie Spiering at the Washington Examiner, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney, when asked about the story, in Spiering's words, "asserted that OFA was an 'independent organization' that just happened to support the president’s policy agenda," "refused to address the New York Times reporting," and "ended the press briefing as reporters were still asking questions and fled the podium." If the late Tony Snow had done this while serving as press secretary under George W. Bush, we'd be seeing a continuous loop of the walkout on network TV all day long. The key paragraphs from the Times story, the reaction of MSNBC's Chuck Todd follow the jump, and the Associated Press's non-denial denial firewall follow the jump.
There's practically nothing as delicious as watching liberals eat their own, especially in the current post-election environment when the Obama-loving media are revelling in Republicans going after one another.
With this in mind, grab some popcorn and your favorite beverage as you watch MSNBC regular Donny Deutsch ask CNN's Piers Morgan Monday, "When did you become such a crazy liberal?" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Al Sharpton joined the sequester scare-mongering squad on his MSNBC show this evening. Just one problem: the Reverend Al got one of his "facts" embarrassingly wrong. Sharpton claimed that the effect of the sequester would be to close Rep. Paul Ryan's hometown airport in Janesville, Wisconsin. Nuh-uh.
Yes, Southern Wisconsin Regional in Janesville is on a list of 200 airports, 100 of which would have their towers closed under the sequester. So for starters, contrary to what Sharpton suggests, the odds are only 1-in-2 that even if the sequester hits, there will be any effect whatsoever on the Janesville airport. But in any case, closing a tower by no means closes an airport. Is Al unaware that of the roughly 20,000 airports in the USA, only about 500—less than 3%—have towers? Even if the tower closes, flights will continue to flow in and out of Janesville. There are well-established FAA procedures that pilots follow to communicate with each other at non-towered fields. Shame on Sharpton for his false scare-mongering. View the video after the jump.
You've surely heard by now that Michelle Obama presented the Academy Award for Best Picture last evening.
On Monday, MSNBC host Alex Wagner, appearing on Hardball, said, "Could Laura Bush have done it? No. If she'd appeared at the Oscars, I don't think she would have been greeted with the same amount of warmth" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
According to TV critic David Zurawik, MSNBC's hiring of ex-Obama officials David Axelrod and Robert Gibbs makes the so-callend news network almost "a bona fide organ of state propaganda."
Hours after this was published Monday, Hardball's Chris Matthews offered his services to Hillary Clinton - along with those of MSNBC contributors Howard Fineman and Joan Walsh - in order to get her elected president in 2016 (video follows with transcribed highlights and commentary):
Call her MoveOn.Mika . . . Bob Woodward has demonstrated that President Obama was not telling the truth during the third presidential debate when he flatly stated that "the sequester is not something that I've proposed. It is something that Congress has proposed.” In fact, it was two Obama aides who devised the plan, and Obama himself who approved it.
But when Joe Scarborough wanted to get those facts on the record this morning, Mika Brzezinski repeatedly declared that discussing Obama's failure to tell the truth was "silly." Things got heated between the co-hosts at one point as Mika cut Joe off, saying "I need to talk." And trying to end the uncomfortable discussion, Mika actually announced "I'm moving on." View the video after the jump.
As press secretary to President Obama, Robert Gibbs was often in the obfuscation business. Now that he's been freed from that role and become a news analyst—albeit at MSNBC—Gibbs has become considerably more candid. Readers will recall, for example, that he described Chuck Hagel as "unimpressive and unprepared" at his Senate confirmation hearing.
Today, Gibbs took that frankness a significant step further. On Up With Chris Hayes, Gibbs stated that as press secretary, he had been ordered not to acknowledge the existence of the drone program. View the video after the jump.
In yesterday's Washington Post, Bob Woodward repeated what the essence of what he wrote about sequestration in his book, “The Price of Politics.”
Why? Because leftist media stooges like MSNBC's Chuck Todd, who is upset that conservatives and Republicans are "begging the media to say it's Obama that started the sequester, not them" (well, in general, Chuck, we'd like to see you tell the truth, but we've long since given up expecting it, let alone begging for it) insist on claiming that it was a Republican idea. It wasn't. Woodward re-elaborates (internal links are in original; bolds are mine):
Does Ed Schultz ever actually watch the cable network that employs him?
While complaining about crimes against humanity by conservatives in media, Schultz on his radio show this week depicted MSNBC as the principled epitome of accuracy and balance. (audio clip after page break)
Yesterday’s broadcast of MSNBC’s Now with Alex Wagner featured a discussion about the Keystone XL Pipeline, which is anathema to the environmental left, and which President Obama cynically delayed a decision on until after the 2012 election. With the decision to approve or decline the project still looming for President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry -- who technically is the point person on approving the project -- Melinda Pierce of the Sierra Club was brought on the panel to discuss the pending doom we face with climate change, and disseminate the message that we can’t drill our way to energy independence.
To Wagner’s credit she did cite a piece from, of all things, Joe Nocera of the New York Times to give an alternative view to Pierce’s. Whereas Pierce responded by equating the approval of the pipeline to setting off a “carbon bomb”:
Appearing on Friday's Andrea Mitchell Reports on MSNBC to discuss the upcoming budget sequestration, Bloomberg View columnist Margaret Carlson touted President Obama's ability "to manipulate some of these cuts so that they're going to hurt and people are going to see them," in order to put pressure on congressional Republicans. [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
Carlson then proclaimed: "I think we'll start hearing, you know, squeals, when, as [Transportation Secretary] Ray LaHood predicts, you know, we see those first lines at the airport. And it may even hurt, you know, those wealthy Republicans who don't have private jets, when air traffic control and the transportation security lines grow longer."
After dismissing the argument that President Obama was to blame for the sequester as "dumb" on Thursday's MSNBC Daily Rundown, NBC political director Chuck Todd further mocked the notion on Friday's program: "Republicans have been playing, well, an inside game, the inside the Beltway game, trying to build support for their position against the cuts and begging the media to say it's Obama that started the sequester, not them." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
Woody Guthrie was an American original who wrote some enduring music and did a lot to publicize the plight of the people of the Dust Bowl. There's just one little inconvenient truth about Guthrie: he ran in Communist circles. Though it's reported that he never officially joined the party, he's quoted as saying that the "the best thing that I did in 1936 was to sign up with the Communist Party." He also wrote 174 columns for the Communist Party's Daily Worker newspaper.
But nary a mention was made of Woody's Communist connections on Morning Joe today. Instead, Mika Brzezinski giggled like a schoolgirl over the numerous, explicit sex scenes contained in a recently-discovered novel that Guthrie wrote, House of Earth. View the video after the jump.
Marcus Davis, a Houston, Texas-based restaurant owner, defends murals of Barack Obama painted on the exterior of his establishment with an AR-15.
Even though he is aware of this, Martin Bashir - one of MSNBC's most vocal gun control advocates - praised the proprietor of The Breakfast Klub during a lengthy interview Thursday (video follows with transcribed highlights and commentary):
On her 1 p.m. et hour MSNBC show on Thursday, host Andrea Mitchell mounted her high horse in condemning Republican senators who questioned defense secretary nominee Chuck Hagel about his connection to what turned out to be a fake organization: "Without even checking the factual basis for their questions....You can ask anything and create a sound bite, and then people pick it up in social media, and it's off and running." [Listen to the audio or watch the video after the jump]
People in glass houses should not throw stones. Mitchell infamously aired a deceptively edited clip of Mitt Romney during the 2012 presidential race that made him seem out of touch. In September of 2011, she took Republican House Speaker John Boehner wildly out of context and accused him of being "disrespectful" to President Obama.
Sadly, MSNBC cannot follow sister network NBC’s lead in reporting the story of disgraced Democrat Jesse Jackson Jr. (D-Ill) and his impending prison sentence for illegally using campaign funds for personal usage.
On the February 20 edition of NBC Nightly News as well as on the February 21 edition of Today, both shows correctly identify Jesse Jackson Jr. as a Democrat, but their MSNBC morning show Morning Joe skipped the important detail. [See video after jump. MP3 audio here.]
MSNBC's Chuck Todd on Thursday echoed a liberal columnist and mocked the idea of blaming Barack Obama for sequester spending cuts, even though it was the President's idea. On Thursday's Daily Rundown, Todd sneered, "Of all the dumb things Washington does, this 'who started it' argument has proven to be one of the dumber ones, especially since we're so close to the actual cuts going into place." [See video below. MP3 audio here.]
Todd's talking points sound very similar to assertions made by liberal Newsweek/Daily Beast writer Michael Tomasky. On Tuesday, he admitted that Obama came up with the plan, but wondered why it matters. The sub-headline offered this Daily Beast article proclaimed, "Conservatives keep reminding everyone that the sequester was Obama’s idea. But, says Michael Tomasky, that doesn’t mean he’s to blame for the current crisis."
Mika Brzezinski immediately asked her producer if the seven-second delay had worked. It hadn't. On today's Morning Joe, praising the "authenticity" of the New Jersey governor, an unbleeped Mort Zuckerman said there's "no bull****" about Chris Christie.
Joe Scarborough sought to slough off the incident, saying no seven-second delay was necessary: "you got a lot of farmers saying that in western Pennsylvania. That's no big deal." Mika begrudgingly mouthed agreement but her tone and body language left no doubt that she was uncomfortable with Mort's excursion into the scatalogical. View the video after the jump. H/t NB reader Cobokat.
On Wednesday's Hardball, Chris Matthews, who previously ranted about too much "hate" in politics, sneeringly compared the House GOP to Hamas. Talking to Jonathan Allen of Politico, Matthews snarled at Barack Obama's congressional opponents: "Who is the President talking to? Is it just a clique of a bunch of right-wingers who don't want to talk to anybody? Are they Hamas?" [See video below. MP3 audio here.]
It was left to Allen, no conservative, to talk Matthews down: "They are not Hamas." It's clear that the cable anchor doesn't listen to himself when he talks. On January 21, he whined about too much partisanship and over-the-top language: "Why can't politics be a matter of belief and honest disagreement, not hatred?" If only the January 21 Matthews could ask the February 20 Matthews this.
The Orlando Sentinel reported Tuesday evening that the Universal Orlando theme park will be ending health care benefits for part-time workers at the close of 2013, citing provisions of ObamaCare that go into effect on January 1 of next year (h/t Hot Air). "Universal is one of the largest employers in Central Florida, with approximately 17,000 employees. It has thousands of part-time workers," notes the Sentinel.
Universal Orlando is, of course, a division of NBCUniversal, the parent company of NBC and its cable network sister MSNBC. As we have quite exhaustively documented, MSNBC is an enthusiastic cheerleader of all things Obama, including his policy positions such as ObamaCare. It remains to be seen to what extent NBC News and MSNBC will report this story.
On Tuesday's MSNBC Morning Joe, host Joe Scarborough blamed conservative media outlets for recent Republican electoral defeats: "...for conservatives that think they have to stay in their own little media world, since Rush Limbaugh went on the air and became a national figure, Republicans have lost five out of the last six presidential elections in the popular vote. Since Fox News went on the air in 1996, Republicans have lost four out of five." [Listen to the audioor watch the video after the jump]
Co-host Mika Brzezinski snidely chimed in: "Please keep doing what you're doing." Scarborough continued his rant: "So when Ronald Reagan and Richard Nixon had to go up against a media culture that absolutely hated them, that despised them, that mocked them, that ran them into the ground every night, and there was no conservative outlet, they won 49 states....But for people that think...they have to stay in this little box, I've got bad news for you. It's not working."
In 2008, a then-MSNBC host mocked George W. Bush's senior adviser, Karl Rove, for signing up with the "home team" of Fox News. Yet, on Tuesday it was announced that Barack Obama's senior adviser, David Axelrod, will be joining NBC and MSNBC as an analyst. A NBC press release hyped that Axelrod "will contribute frequently across all broadcasts and platforms of both networks." (There was no mention as to whether MSNBC is Obama's "home team.)
On February 6, 2008, then-MSNBC anchor Dan Abrams trashed Fox News for signing Rove: "The folks over at Fox News are just thrilled about what I'm calling Karl Rove's homecoming, his debut last as a political commentator and the home team cheered them on again and again." Abrams, who is now at ABC, sneered, "Come on. Give me a break."