Time Magazine senior correspondent Michael Grunwald on Monday lamented the fact that Barack Obama, "a paragon of fiscal responsibility compared to [George W.] Bush," doesn't get accolades for all his successes.
Grunwald's piece, entitled, "The Counterfactual President: Obama Averted Disasters, but Getting Credit Is the Hard Part," sarcastically compared President Obama's record on terrorism with Bush: "Apparently there needs to be a spectacular terrorist attack on U.S. soil during your presidency before you can get credit for preventing another one."
The overall thrust of the article was explaining why, despite all these accomplishments, Obama's actions have not been properly heralded.
The great thing about being a enviro-evangelist blogger in the United States is the moral high ground it gives you from which to condemn people who fall short of your ecological credentials.
Take Bryan Walsh, the blogger behind Time magazine's Ecocentric blog. Walsh took GoDaddy.com CEO Bob Parsons for hunting down an elephant in Zimbabwe that was a threat to a village's crops.
In an April 4 post, Walsh set out to convince readers that hunting elephants, even when done as a defensive measure to save a village's crops, is illegitimate.
Of course, that's easy to say from the climate-controlled comfort of a New York magazine office, so Walsh reserved the bulk of his ire not for the villagers or the Zimbabwean government but for Parsons, who apparently made a politically incorrect choice with his own money:
During Monday's "Morning Joe," Time's Mark Halperin and co-host Mika Brzezinski helpfully provided some spin for the White House to borrow as President Obama finishes his prepared remarks for Monday evening's address to the nation on the events in Libya.
President Obama has received sharp criticism for his foreign policy concerning Egypt and Libya, but Halperin threw cold water on that, calling Obama's strategy "extremely deft in a very tough situation." Brzezinski agreed with his premise, adding that his "deft" handling is also in accord with promises he previously made.
"He's pro-democracy, right? He's anti-violence. He's anti-unilateral U.S. intervention," Halperin noted of Obama, trying to connect his current policy with the peacemaker he claimed to be as a presidential candidate.
(Video below the jump. Comments begin at the 12:30 mark.)
In this week's issue, Time magazine followed Newsweek in honoring gay sex columnist Dan Savage and offering him space to trash conservatives. The liberal media sets Savage up as an anti-bullying activist, then lets him push conservative faces in the dirt. In December Newsweek printed him saying "F--- John McCain" and asserting Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia was clearly a "c---sucker." In their Ten Questions feature honoring his "It Gets Better" videos affirming homosexual children, Time asked him "Who hasn't made a video yet who you hope will?" This allowed Savage to insist conservatives don't care if homosexual children (or children who think they might be) commit suicide:
Rick Santorum. Tim Pawlenty. Sarah Palin. Glenn Beck. The Prime Minister of Britain, who leads the Conservative Party there, made a video, and we haven't seen one from anyone on the right in the U.S. to even say, You're 14 and gay. Don't kill yourself.
What Savage really wants is what David Cameron of Britain provided: a "Conservative" who's 100 percent in agreement with government celebrating homosexuality. Cameron says in his video:
Leading the free world is highly overrated and so last century.
Just ask Time's Joe Klein, who is giddy that our European allies and the Arab League took a leading role in setting up a no-fly zone over Libya, some 31 days after Muammar al-Qadhafi started opening fire upon ragtag rebels.
From a March 18 entry entitled "Gaddafi Duck" at the magazine's Swampland blog:
Thursday’s New York Times featured a puffball profile by Jeremy Peters of Jay Carney, the recently installed White House press secretary and former reporter for Time magazine undergoing a trial by fire in the wake of international crises. Carney left Time after the election to become communications director for Vice President Biden before getting his White House promotion.
His former colleagues at Time never knew which politicians he voted for. He complained privately that he felt the magazine’s coverage of the 2008 election -- the one that put his current boss in the White House -- was too lopsided toward Barack Obama.
Rebellious son of infamous 1980s televangelists returns (sort of) to the faith of his parents, pastors a church, but now takes a decidedly liberal tack on the Christian faith.
That's certainly a compelling story for a secular magazine to cover, especially in this Lenten season.
But with her March 15-published interview with Jay Bakker, a self-styled "evangelical punk preacher," Time religion writer Amy Sullivan failed to critically evaluate Bakker's claims or present challenges to Bakker's theology from within the mainstream of orthodox Christian thought.
Indeed,Sullivan seems to sympathize with if not outright agree with Bakker's take on how Scripture can justify his stand on homosexuality (bolded sections are Sullivan's questions, unbolded are Bakker's responses):
Given the sacrifices that U.S. sailors and Marines make to serve our country, it hardly seems right to me to force them to go for months on end aboard surface ships without the right to light up a smoke.
But I'm not Mark Thompson.
Today the Time magazine staffer dusted off a convenient but recently-ignored liberal media bogeyman, Big Tobacco:
When a sitting U.S. congressman's behavior is so erratic and inexplicable that his own staffers want him to get psychiatric care and some of them quit in horror upon his reelection, it's a legitimate news story for national media coverage regardless of the political party of the person involved.
Of course, if the congressman were a Republican, it's difficult to imagine his political affiliation would go unmentioned in any media account.
But the federal legislator in question is Oregon Rep. David Wu, a Democrat.
In a February 23 Swampland blog post for Time.com, Amy Sullivan omitted Wu's political affiliation even as she detailed the troubling behavior he's exhibited over the past few months:
Climate alarmists always want to point out the downside of a warming planet while never informing the public of the benefits.
Take for example Time magazine's Tuesday piece bemoaning global warming's impact on allergy sufferers but never once mentioning that a longer growing season for the dastardly pollinating plants means a commensurate rise in the growing season of things we eat:
For about seven minutes on Monday's "Morning Joe," Chris Matthews celebrated his President's Day fawning over former President Clinton. Matthews had nothing but praise for the nation's 42nd president in anticipation of the documentary "President of the World" – apparently Clinton's new title – airing at 10 p.m. EST Monday on MSNBC.
"You know, Churchill's huge in this country and he's 70-30 back in England, and Nixon is probably 20-80 here, but in France he's about 60-40. You know, he's 100-0 around the world, Bill Clinton," Matthews remarked. Apparently Clinton is more liked around the globe than Churchill.
"He is, I don't know what IQ, what, 160? I don't know what it is" Matthews rambled, in awe of Clinton's intellect. "He studies economics an hour a day," he added. "He gets up every morning and does, like, a daily office....Somebody asked me the other day what makes him click? I said he won't quit. He doesn't want the lights to go out. It isn't complicated. I don't want to go to sleep, mommy."
"It's one thing to look a gift horse in the mouth. It's quite another thing to slaughter a gift horse and send its disemboweled corpse back to Washington."
That's how Time magazine senior correspondent Michael Grunwald characterized Republican Florida Governor Rick Scott's decision to spurn a federal Department of Transportation high-speed rail grant for the Sunshine State.
"This was the nation's most shovel-ready high-speed project, and the state wasn't required to spend a dime to build it," Grunwald noted in his February 16 Swampland blog post.
Yesterday I rebuked Time's Jay Newton-Small for falsely characterizing a bill before South Dakota's state legislature that would make it legal to use lethal force against a person attempting to kill an unborn child in the commission of a crime.
"South Dakota is apparently considering legalizing the murder of doctors who perform abortions," Newton-Small complained.
Later yesterday afternoon, Time magazine staffer Amy Sullivan corrected her colleague about the purpose and scope of the legislation, but feared that extremist violence might be encouraged by the state's relatively restrictive abortion laws:
Jay Carney just assumed his new post as White House press secretary yesterday, but he already finds himself embroiled in controversy.
Despite leaving Time magazine shortly after the 2008 election to work for the Obama administration, Carney continued collecting payments from his former employer in 2009, Politico reported today.
According to newly released financial disclosure forms, Carney was paid $270,000 by Time while serving as Vice President Joe Biden's communications director, consisting of a $58,000 bonus for work during the 2008 presidential campaign and a $212,000 severance payment.
Liberal Washington Post columnist Eugene Robinson trashes conservative leaders in his latest column – for not taking a clear stand on the Egyptian crisis and for not supporting the populist protests. "Why don't conservatives love freedom?" he provocatively asked, concluding that if conservatives think 1.2 billion Muslims cannot be trusted to rule themselves, "that's not what I call loving freedom." His logic is deafening.
Robinson accused conservative leaders of opposing Obama's Egypt policy simply because they are thinking "heaven forbid the that the president get any credit." He used their "ambivalence" at CPAC – which he characterized as either silence or a vague shot at the Obama administration – to condemn what he thinks is their opposition to freedom in the Middle East.
"Mitt Romney went to CPAC and didn't mention Egypt at all, which was, you'd think he'd be paying attention," Robinson noted. He questioned other conservative leaders for being "so kind of silent, and/or grumpy throughout the CPAC gala, and even beyond, in the case of some conservatives. What we're talking about is freedom, which everybody wants and loves."
Yesterday afternoon veteran Time reporter Joe Klein hacked out a three-paragraph blog post that practically complained that young conservatives at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) are selfish spoiled brats, at least in contrast to altruistic veterans of the Teach for America (TFA) program.
Noting that the annual TFA alumni conference was going on across town in Washington, D.C. from CPAC, Klein praised attendees of the former while dismissing the political concerns of the latter:
On Thursday (at NewsBusters; at BizzyBlog), I noted that Us Weekly's web site briefly posted a satirical item as legitimate news.
The satire item was about Sarah Palin criticizing Christine Aguilera's infamous National Anthem botch at last week's Super Bowl on Sean Hannity's Monday radio show. Palin didn't even appear on Hannity's show on Monday. Once caught by gossipcop.com, Us Weekly pulled the item.
The same cannot be said of Time.com. Time was also apparently fooled, but seems to be pretending that it knew the item was satire all along. Readers can judge for themselves from the graphics which follow.
On Monday's "Morning Joe," co-host Mika Brzezinski launched into a passionate defense of President Obama's handling of tough press coverage in 2008. Joe Scarborough and Mark Halperin retorted that Obama received soft coverage on the campaign trail, and has only recently learned how to face tough interviews. Brzezinski apparently thinks that is "revisionist thinking."
"He was raked over the coal– he had to do a freakin' speech about his race! Are you kidding me!?" Mika exclaimed when she was trying to rebut claims of Obama receiving soft media coverage.
When co-host Scarborough and Time magazine's Halperin agreed that President Obama did not receive tough press coverage as a senator or as a presidential candidate, Brzezinski spat back "No. That is revisionist thinking."
During a Monday morning recap of the Super Bowl, "Morning Joe" co-host Joe Scarborough asked, tongue-in-cheek, if "right-wing, talk radio conservatives" would blame President Obama for the ghastly national anthem performance by four-time Grammy winner Christina Aguilera.
Amidst the light-hearted banter, Scarborough turned serious and asked "when we talked about what's driving the week – will conservatives, will conservatives – right-wing, talk radio conservatives – blame Barack Obama for Christina Aguilera defacing the national anthem?"
Time magazine's Mark Halperin, and co-host Willie Geist played along. "Glenn Beck's got the chalkboard going right now," Scarborough continued. "With the dotted line," Halperin added. "He's ready," chimed in Geist.
"If the majority [of the U.S. Supreme Court] agrees with [Judge Roger] Vinson, President Obama would find not only his health care bill undone, but also face the most significant scaling back of the government's power to use legislation to solve its problems in decades," Time's Michael Lindenberger warned in a February 2 post at the magazine's website.
To reach such a conclusion, however, Lindenberger must have misunderstood Vinson's ruling on Monday in State of Florida v. U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services, which sought not to "turn back the clock" on commerce clause interpretation but merely prevent its overextension into an unprecedented and dangerous arena: forcing Americans to buy private health insurance under the flimsy illogic that such economic inactivity actually amounts to commercial activity.
"I am required to interpret this law as the Supreme Court presently defines it. Only the Supreme Court can redefine or expand it further," Vinson noted on page 43 of his 78 page opinion. The Reagan appointee noted that no less legislative authorities than the Congressional Research Service and the Congressional Budget Office have found Congress requiring Americans to purchase private health insurance under penalty of law to be "novel" and "unprecedented"
Time magazine's Bryan Walsh couldn't write up a story on the need for more electricity in developing countries without shoe-horning in a dire warning about climate change.
In a January 31st story entitled "Building a Country by Switching on the Lights," Walsh initially warned readers that in addition to the problems of fighting malaria and improving infrastructure that there was "a blind spot that does more than almost anything to keep the poor poor: they don't have electric power" but he then gravely added: "At the same time, the reality of climate change means that even the developing world needs to look for cleaner sources of energy because Western-style growth driven by fossil fuels could lead to catastrophe."
On Monday's "Morning Joe," MSNBC co-host Joe Scarborough hinted that President Obama may have been a major catalyst of the current protests against the authoritarian Mubarak regime in Egypt. Scarborough referred to the president's 2009 Cairo speech and wondered if it inspired the present protests.
"Barack Obama, he goes to Cairo, he gives a speech, and he inspires – perhaps he's the one who inspires a lot of these Egyptians to get out into the streets eventually," Scarborough proposed.
The "Morning Joe" panel was discussing the transition of power in Egypt and how it might affect American politics. Scarborough characterized President Obama as on the one hand a possible galvanizing figure in the current push for freedom in Egypt, and yet on the other hand a world leader accused of inaction during oppression of Iranians by their government in 2009.
The Associated Press is reporting that former TIME magazine reporter and current Biden director of communications Jay Carney has been tapped to replace Robert Gibbs as White House press secretary. Carney is being credited for softening (and even destroying) the image of Vice President Biden as a gaffe machine -- as if the media haven't tried to help.
For our NewsBusters archive on Carney, whose Time byline was James Carney, click here.
The President that expanded the role, scope, and size of the federal government more than all that came before him or since is unquestionably Franklin Delano Roosevelt.
Yet on Tuesday, moments after calling Congresswoman Michele Bachmann a "balloon head," MSNBC's Chris Matthews actually said FDR "bailed out capitalism in the '30s" (video follows with transcript and commentary):