Howard Kurtz on Sunday bashed Fox News personalities Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity for calling Delaware's Democrat Senatorial candidate Chris Coons a Marxist.
Coons, while a student at Amherst College in 1985, wrote an autobiographical article for the school newspaper called "Chris Coons: The Making of a Bearded Marxist."
Despite Politico's Alex Isenstadt bringing this piece to light on May 3, Kurtz on CNN's "Reliable Sources" expressed dismay with the conclusion folks like Beck and Hannity have come to concerning its contents.
"It was a joke, a clear and obvious joke." said Kurtz. "That's also a good description of those who are passing off this ancient article as evidence of some communist past" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
This announcement comes a few days after the Council on American-Islamic Relations proudly proclaimed that it would be giving Thomas a lifetime achievement award at its annual fundraising banquet in October.
The Committee's online invitation reads, "Join ADC for an evening to celebrate a woman with a lifetime of courage: The Great Helen Thomas":
Although the media took last week's announcement of comedian Jon Stewart's "Rally to Restore Sanity" like it was manna falling from heaven, some Democrats are concerned it could hurt them in the upcoming midterm elections.
Scheduling such an event on the Saturday before Election Day, when field operatives should be diligently working on Get Out The Vote efforts in their districts, could be tremendously counterproductive.
On the other hand, as Politico's Ben Smith noted Monday, there's already a big Democrat rally planned in October:
For almost two years, Sarah Palin has been complaining about media members making things up about her.
On Friday, one finally admitted it.
As NewsBusters reported Wednesday, Vanity Fair's October issue has a hit piece on its cover about the former Alaska governor that Palin-hating press members have been predictably fawning and gushing over.
Now, the Associated Press is reporting that the author, Michael Joseph Gross, has admitted making a mistake in his piece:
Ignoring the current political reality for wishful thinking of bygone days, Politico’sRichard Cohen wrote a nice bluff piece today for Democrat anti-life CO Rep. Diana DeGette, strongly pushing a bill to force taxpayer funding of embryonic stem cell research. Such legislation would render mute the August 23 federal court ruling that federally funded escr violates federal law by killing that law.
Cohen has either not seen or is ignoring (would bet it's the latter) the August 27 Rasmussen poll that showed a stunning reversal of American thought on paying for escr.
While 17 mos. ago a slight majority (52%) supported President Obama’s now-enjoined executive order authorizing public-funded escr, 57% today oppose it. Now, only 1/3 of America (exactly: 33%) support what DeGette is pushing.
I’m sure DeGette knows about the poll but is attempting a bluff, wanting her shaky colleagues and leadership to think public-funded escr is in the bag and that it would be to their political benefit to have a hand in this done deal. From the article:
In a short item about a Democratic Governors Association election complaint about Ohio GOP gubernatorial candidate John Kasich, the Associated Press's Julie Carr Smyth showed that she is willfully ignoring Buckeye State reality, or has been living a hermit's existence for the past few months.
In describing Kasich's standing against Democratic incumbent governor Ted Strickland, Smyth claimed that Kasich "is keeping pace with Strickland in polls and fundraising" (a picture of the relevant paragraph is here).
As you can see, that's sort of like a baseball writer claiming that "The Cincinnati Reds are keeping pace with the Chicago Cubs this year":
Politico Monday evening ran the following headline:
Tidal Wave? 10-point Poll Edge for GOP
Inside, the news wasn't much better for the liberal press:
The Gallup poll, coming at the end of a brutal August for Democrats and President Barack Obama, reinforces the rapidly forming prevailing view that the horizon is as bleak for Democrats as it ever has been.
The headline of the Gallup poll in question was also sure to elicit gasps in newsrooms from coast to coast:
GOP Takes Unprecedented 10-Point Lead on Generic Ballot
In recent days, New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg has become a beloved press figure as a result of his unshaking support for the Ground Zero mosque.
Isn't it fascinating how in this environment where rich people are being demonized at every turn all you need to do is a support a popular liberal cause and your financial sins are instantly forgiven?
With this in mind, the good folks at Big Journalism have uncovered some rather startling financial connections between this media mogul and the Arab world that haven't raised any eyebrows from journalists that love to follow the money when there's a conservative at the other end of the smoking wallet.
Consider the uproar last week surrounding News Corporation's contribution to the Republican Governors Association.
As you read Mondo Frazier's marvelous piece "Follow the Money: Could Mayor Bloomberg's Media Business Interests in the Middle East Have Anything to Do with His Support of the Ground Zero Mosque?" ask yourself why the seemingly always curious press have ignored any examination of this billionaire's motives:
Earlier today, Shirley Sherrod, who, according to the current version of ruling class wisdom, was prematurely evacuated from the USDA by Director Tom Vilsack, decided not to accept an offer to return to the agency.
Instead, according to Politico's Matt Negrin, "she hasn’t accepted the department’s offer to work there again, but that she wants 'some type of relationship' with it later." We wouldn't closure or anything, would we?
Five weeks or so have intervened since Andrew Breitbart posted a video excerpt of Sherrod's speech at an NAACP event. (It should be noted USAactionnews.com actually posted the video earlier; though their link has been taken down, their original July 15 tweet is here.)
In that time, the establishment press has either seriously downplayed or totally ignored the several important items relating to the background and outlook of Ms. Sherrod and her husband Charles.
One may think that someone as well connected as long-time Washington correspondent and MSNBC host Andrea Mitchell might also connect the dots. After an unseasonably rough DC winter occurring right in the midst of the ClimateGate scandal, she would be aware of doubt being cast over the idea of manmade global warming.
But if you want evidence her mind is made up regardless of any of this, you could detect from her reaction to a report from Politco's Jim VandeHei that some Republican candidates are using the climate change debate to advance their campaigns. On MSNBC's Aug. 18 broadcast of "Andrea Mitchell Reports," Mitchell expressed her surprise that candidates would invoke this issue.
"Well, you might think that the link between manmade greenhouse gases and global warming is clearly established science, but some Republican candidates are challenging conventional wisdom this year," Mitchell said.
File the news in this report filed late yesterday afternoon by Michael Calderone and John Cook at Yahoo's Upshot Blog under "D" for Double Standards:
White House reporters mum on Obama lunch, even as papers back transparency
White House reporters are keeping quiet about an off-the-record lunch today with President Obama — even those at news organizations who've advocated in the past for the White House to release the names of visitors.
But the identities of the lunch's attendees won't remain secret forever: Their names will eventually appear on the White House's periodically updated public database of visitor logs.
... The Obama White House began posting the logs in order to settle a lawsuit, begun under the Bush administration, from Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), which sought the Secret Service's White House visitor logs under the Freedom of Information Act.
... And guess who filed briefs supporting that argument? Virtually every newspaper that covers the White House.
Christiane Amanpour on Sunday asked a rather surprising question of her "This Week" panel concerning President Obama's speech earlier in the week about the troop draw down in Iraq:
Do you think everybody is taking a lot of credit but not giving credit where credit is due?
Obviously, "everybody" in this instance meant the current White House resident who chose not to give credit to former President George W. Bush for the success in Iraq or to even mention "the surge" in his address.
After former Bush speechwriter now Washington Post contributor Michael Gerson said, "I didn't find the speech to be a particularly generous speech...he's attempting to take credit for something that he opposed," some truly shocking statements were made by Amanpour and Politico's John Harris (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Darren Samuelsohn of Politico made the front page of their newspaper on Thursday with this stark sentence: "Environmentalists went with an all-or-nothing strategy for the 111th Congress. Nothing won." He added: "Now, green groups licking their wounds after spending tens of millions of dollars to pass a cap-and-trade bill must answer serious questions about whether they are capable of playing another round of hardball."
I wouldn't expect this to be a big television story. Cap-and-trade never was. There were zero stories with the words "cap and trade" on ABC, CBS, and NBC before the House voted last year. After the vote, there was a smidgen or two, but none before. But it's slightly amazing that with all the climate hype the media have dished out, nothing was accomplished. Samuelsohn's story didn't touch on Climategate's effect. It didn't even come up as he talked about how nobody in the green groups is getting fired:
Although it's not clear if Sidney Harman made the best offer of the suitors vying to purchase Newsweek magazine, there is one reason that was made clear by Donald E. Graham, chairman of The Washington Post Co. (NYSE:WPO).
According to Mike Allen at Politico, Harman's bid was accepted by Graham partly because he felt comfortable with Harman's politics.
"Graham felt comfortable with Harman's centrist politics, and was comforted by the idea of selling to a stalwart of the Washington establishment," Allen wrote. "Harman is expected to preserve the serious-minded, essentially New-Democratic tone [outgoing Newsweek editor Jon] Meacham set for the magazine."
But a closer look at Harman's political donations implies there is hardly anything "centrist" about his politics. According to The Center for Responsive Politics' website OpenSecrets.org, the husband of Rep. Jane Harman, D-Calif., has given generously to Democratic candidates - over $130,000 dating back to 1992.
During her 1PM ET hour show on Monday, MSNBC host Andrea Mitchell promoted allegations from the Congressional Black Caucus that ethics investigations into Democrats Charlie Rangel and Maxine Waters are racially motivated: "Are black lawmakers being singled out by the ethics watchdogs on Capitol Hill? New charges of racial bias."
After detailing the accusations against California Congresswoman Waters, Mitchell noted the formal ethics charges filed against New York Congressman Rangel and touted his defense: "...he, we now know, tried to point out that Mitch McConnell and others allegedly did the same thing, trying to raise money for a center named after them. He's claiming that this is a matter of bias."
Mitchell's guest, Politico editor-in-chief John Harris, continued to make the case: "...that there is a clear double standard and they're asking why is it that the new congressional ethics procedures seem to be the result of that, seem to be a number of African-Americans that are getting put under a tough ethical microscope....They say that there seems to be a pattern that reflects, they're alleging, a racial bias."
Similarly, on Sunday's CNN Newsroom, anchor Don Lemon interviewed the Reverend Al Sharpton and wondered: "...some are openly questioning why two high profile African-American House members are coming under such tough scrutiny. Do you think that black members are being targeted unfairly by the Ethics Committee?"
What will it take for the media to acknowledge that the Tea Party is not a racist movement, and that liberals have smeared it as such in a naked politicization of race relations? How about a lefty activist admitting just that.
UPenn professor Mary Frances Berry, a leader of the "far-left black political scene," as NB Executive Editor Matt Sheffield wrote, penned this astonishing email to Politico, published on July 20:
Tainting the tea party movement with the charge of racism is proving to be an effective strategy for Democrats. There is no evidence that tea party adherents are any more racist than other Republicans, and indeed many other Americans. But getting them to spend their time purging their ranks and having candidates distance themselves should help Democrats win in November. Having one’s opponent rebut charges of racism is far better than discussing joblessness.
Roger Simon's Wednesday morning column ("Journolist veers out of bounds"), an item Rush brought up on his show this afternoon, may be one of the most delusional items ever written by a journalist attempting to defend his profession.
Rich Noyes at NewsBusters covered one aspect of Simon's column on Wednesday, namely the deliciously hypocritical outrage of NBC/MSNBC reporter Chuck Todd over how the Journolist scandal "has been keeping him up nights, and he's especially frustrated that 'the right' would use it as 'a sledgehammer' against everyday journalists, 'those of us who don't practice advocacy journalism.'"
I'll suggest that Simon's rendition of journalistic history is at least as offensive as Todd's reaction, in that it's laughably and obviously false on so many fronts (numbered tags are mine):
... when I became a reporter, it was almost a holy calling. (1)
On the very day America learned so-called journalists conspired to destroy Sarah Palin from the moment John McCain chose her as his running mate, Politico's Roger Simon declared she's at the top of the Republican Party.
Assuming he's correct, what does that tell us about all those in the mainstream media that have been looking down their noses for almost two years as they worked overtime to smear this woman?
Before we attempt to answer that question, let's see what Simon had to say:
As it continues its exponential expansion to cellphones, mobile advertising, television sets and book publishing internet giant Google has been simultaneously expanding its presence in the U.S. political scene, adding lobbyists, DC-based employees, and ramping up its campaign donations.
Google boss Eric Schmidt is one of the nation’s most politically active business leaders — a man who uses the cachet of the company he leads, as well as his own charisma, to build strategic alliances in the Obama administration and on Capitol Hill.
Schmidt, 55, grew up in Washington and returns frequently to visit his mother, who still lives in Northern Virginia. Those trips often double as chances to meet with President Barack Obama, chat with staffers at the Federal Communications Commission and meet with top lawmakers.
Even though I as a pro-life blogger know I battle on the right side of history, on a day-to-day basis I sometimes don't feel like a victor. The fight seems so uphill, with money, political power, and MSM all against us.
So the following July 21 Politico story about what bloggers on the Left think of us was enlightening. Every time I get a peek into the other side's view of us I realize once again that they're paper tigers.
Also of note is the Left's view that Obama has clipped his agenda thanks to us, when we think his actions thus far demonstrate he is the most liberally radical president ever.
Appearing on Wednesday's Dylan Ratigan Show on MSNBC to discuss the Shirley Sherrod controversy, Politico co-founder Jim VandeHei pointed out the NAACP's role in fueling racial accusations: "If you think about this, where this thing started, the NAACP comes out and makes this charge against the tea party movement."
VandeHei rejected the NAACP's claim of racism in the political movement: "It's a very, very diffuse group. You cannot say that they are racist anymore then you can say the Republican Party's racist or the Democratic Party is racist, so it creates this culture and it's a dangerous topic, it's a dangerous fire to light, and then when it happens this is the outcome."
Explaining how the NAACP charge led to the accusations against Sherrod, VandeHei observed: "I'm not defending Breitbart. But conservatives are outraged, they feel like 'listen, you're – because I'm part of the tea party movement you say, therefore, I'm racist.' And so what Breitbart's arguing is 'I want to push back.'"
In the "secret" underworld of Republican fundraising, Karl Rove and Ed Gillespie use "cloaked" donor lists to "dig up dirt" on Democrats and funnel campaign contributions to Republican candidates. At least that's the impression left by Politico's Jim VandeHei.
On the July 21 "Morning Joe," Time magazine's Mark Halperin challenged VandeHei's characterization of American Crossroads GPS, a Republican political organization that finances issue ads designed to promote conservative positions on policy issues.
"With all due respect to Jim and the folks at Politico, you know, they make this these shadowy donors, this shadowy group, I mean, these are citizens who, under the law, are able to give anonymously to a group like this and to fund political activity to help them win races," complained Halperin.
Scott Brown on Thursday slammed left-wing comedienne Kathy Griffin for mocking his daughters as "prostitutes," a joke that prompted laughter from CNN's Dana Bash.
On Wednesday, Newsbusters explained that the correspondent, along with anchor and husband John King, appeared on Griffin's Bravo television show. The following day, Ben Smith of Politico, among others, reported that the senator's office responded with a scathing statement condemning Griffin's words.
"People can call me any name they want, but families are off limits," Sen. Brown stated. "I love my daughters Ayla and Arianna very much, and any parent would be proud to have them as children. Kathy Griffin and Bravo ought to be ashamed of themselves."
Mika Brzezinski wants to "cut the crap" when it comes to building speculation as to whether Sarah Palin will run for president in 2012. According to Mika, Palin's candidacy is a done deal, and the press is letting itself be sucked into a phony build-up.
Mika is so sure that Sarah is running that on today's Morning Joe she was willing to wager a dubious Jonathan Capehart $1,000. Brzezinski's comments came in response to Politico's report, highlighted by Mike Allen, that Palin has raised significant money and built a nascent campaign staff.
MIKA BRZEZINSKI: Are we going to go through like months and months of "will she or won't she, oh my gosh, might she?" Come on, can we please cut to the chase? Cut the crap . . . The bottom line is, let's just cut to the chase here: she is . . It's just silly. Are we really going to do this fake build-up like LeBron? . . . You guys have all been in TV too long and you're so used to the fake build-up you don't even know when you've been sucked into it.
Howard Kurtz on Sunday used a Keith Olbermann tactic of selectively editing and cherry picking from a Rush Limbaugh radio transcript to make the conservative talk show host look racist.
In a "Reliable Sources" segment dealing with the embattled Republican National Committee chairman Michael Steele, Kurtz played a highly-edited clip of statements Limbaugh made Tuesday about this issue.
Unfortunately, just as MSNBC's Olbermann did on his "Countdown" program, Kurtz never told his viewers that Limbaugh was referring specifically to comments that the Atlanta Journal-Constitution's Cynthia Tucker made on last Sunday's "This Week" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
West coast viewers got to see a July 4 CBS Evening News on Sunday, and those who tuned in saw CBS's interim "report card" on Congress's performance so far. Under the headline of "unfinished business," correspondent Wyatt Andrews and his sole expert, Politico's Jonathan Allen, both fretted how Congress is now "paralyzed" due to a "growing fear of the deficit."
Many Americans are probably wishing Congress had become "paralyzed" a few trillion dollars ago.
Andrews rued that supposedly job-creating "stimulus spending" may be sacrificed if enough congressmen feel deficit spending is now "political Kryptonite."
Many members of Congress especially those in tough re-election campaigns are home right now, trying to figure out the spending issue: Will voters support more stimulus spending if it directly leads to jobs, or has deficit spending itself become political Kryptonite?
Chris Matthews on Friday said Republicans are like suicide bombers trying to destroy the government for their own political benefit.
In a "Hardball" discussion with Rep. Jim Moran (D-Va.) and Politico's Jim VandeHei, Matthews said, "Republicans have been able to get up in the morning every day saying our goal is to destroy the government. That`s our job. And somehow its cheering section back home says, 'Good work. Keep trying to destroy the government.'"
After VandeHei said the strategy might be working because the GOP looks to do well this November, Matthews asked, "Well, what good does it do the country for the Republicans to pick up 30 seats in the House?"
VandeHei responded, "I don`t know if it does anything good for the country...Right now, we have an entire system, we have a media system, we have a culture, we have technology that really I think rewards the incendiary, rewards conflict."
This led Matthews to amazingly say, "Being a suicide bomber is the new political role model. Just kill everything, destroy everything. Blow it up. Nothing gets done. You`re dead, but who cares?" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
To refresh, as posted at NewsBusters and Eyeblast.tv, Pennsylvania Congressman Paul Kanjorski said the following on Wednesday while he was defending what Investors Business Daily has called "Financial Deform":
We’re giving relief to people that I deal with in my office every day now unfortunately. But because of the longevity of this recession, these are people — and they’re not minorities and they’re not defective and they’re not all the things you’d like to insinuate that these programs are about — these are average, good American people.
This isn't too tough to decipher, no matter how many House Democrats try to give him defensive cover -- If the people Kanjorski "deal(s) with in my office everyday" are "average, good American people" because "they're not minorities and they're not defective," then those who are minorities and "defective" in some way are not "average, good American people." Kanjorski uttered an objectively racist (embodying "the belief that race accounts for differences in human character or ability and that a particular race is superior to others") statement.
According to this report, Kanjorski is not apologizing. Therefore, one must conclude that the congressman is comfortable with his objectively racist statement.
"Being a suicide bomber is the new political role model," Chris Matthews told his Friday "Hardball" audience. "Just kill everything, destroy everything, blow it up, nothing gets done. You're dead, but who cares?" he added, referring to conservative Republicans running against Democrats in the 2010 midterms.
The comment came at the end of a segment featuring Rep. Jim Moran (D-Va.) and Politico's Jim VandeHei. Matthews had complained to the latter that the congressional minority Republicans were intent not merely on tinkering around the edges of the majority Democrats' policy proposals but on "destroy[ing] the United States government every time it gets up in the morning" all to the applause of "its cheering section back home say[ing] good work, keep trying to destroy the government."
President Obama's weekly radio address on Saturday devoted the entire hour to a hyper-partisan, long-winded, meandering speech about his Republican critics being too -- wait for it! -- partisan.
Fortunately for him, a compliant national media would simply forward the attack on their own pages and never pause long enough to smell the irony.
In the middle of alleged job offers, controversial nominations, and unpopular bills shoved through Congress along party lines, President Obama complained about "dreary and familiar politics" from the opposition, and the media immediately took his side.
Up first was the Washington Post's Scott Wilson who used the 44 blog on Saturday to cover the speech: