There are always unintended consequences. And with the negotiations taking place at Blair House between the White House and members of Congress in Washington, D.C. on Feb. 25 - that's what appears to be occurring.
On Fox News Channel's Feb. 25 "America Live with Megyn Kelly," medical contributor Dr. Marc Siegel explained some of the myths surrounding the proposed political solutions for health care in the United States. He started with tort reform and explained the trial lawyers have their hands in how this tort reform is done.
"You know 37 states already have tort reform," Siegel said. "That's one of these political solutions that doesn't make any sense - the same as today's summit. The problem with tort isn't even the issue with caps. It's the issue of nuisance suits. Once a doctor has been to a lawyer's office and has their charts combed through, they feel raided. The way they practice medicine changes. They become more defensive. We got to get boards that cut down on nuisance suits. None of that is in the legislation. And if the American public is cynical it's because they know the trial lawyers association is preventing that."
CNN chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanja Gupta pressed HHS Secretary Kathleen for price controls in all parts of the health care industry on Thursday's Newsroom. Gupta stated that insurance companies were "just the tip of the iceberg" of health care costs: "There are a lot of different organizations, groups, people who contribute to health care costs. Are you going to be going after all these folks?" [audio clip available here]
It looked a bit odd for CNN to choose the correspondent, whom Obama chose to be surgeon general before adviser Tom Daschle was forced to resign, to interview other people who signed up to sell ObamaCare. Gupta's question came during an interview 26 minutes into the 9 am Eastern hour, in which both he and CNN anchor Kyra Phillips asked the Obama administration official about the health care summit later in the day at Blair House. Gupta also hinted at the possibility of going after the profits of health care suppliers in his last question to Sebelius (who was sympathetic to Gupta's proposal in her answer):
Keith Olbermann Wednesday went after "a fired MSNBC employee" who likely was the network's former general manager Dan Abrams.
During a revised "Worst Person in the World" segment, the "Countdown" host once again took issue with criticism from Abrams' website concerning his statements about Tea Parties being all white and how hypocritical this is given the lack of diversity on MSNBC's lineup.
"There are at least 23 minority newscasters, hosts, part time hosts, paid contributors and correspondents from NBC on MSNBC`s lineup," said Olbermann.
"Perhaps the reason that Mediaite took a Tea Party`s word for it is that this is the same site of a fired MSNBC employee, and in his attempt to implant his bitterness towards this place, to plug or weave it into his website, he has wigged out" (video embedded below the fold with transcript):
CNN apparently missed the irony of using a segment called "Broken Government" to demand that the government address child hunger.
"Talk about mad as hell," CNN's Kyra Phillips said, introducing the Feb. 25 segment. "Every day a child goes hungry, a food pantry struggles, a parent loses a job. Today: Broken Government and hunger in America."
Phillips suggested that the government should be involved in this problem saying, "We put in so much money to bailing out banks, bailing out big companies, yet every night a child here in our country goes hungry."
CNN's Jack Cafferty on Wednesday absolutely ripped Barack Obama for beginning plans on a reelection campaign.
"President Obama is taking a lot for granted," the outspoken CNNer began his segment during the 5PM hour of the "Situation Room."
Cafferty referred to a Politico piece "reporting that top White House advisers are quietly working on plans for the 2012 reelection campaign."
"I guess when you have the economy and health care reform and the deficits under control, then you can spend your time worrying about the next election -- even if it's almost three years away," he sarcastically said.
"Well, my guess is it won't turn out quite the same way," Cafferty said of Obama's future reelection efforts adding, "And if the jobs don't start coming back soon, well, he may want to see if that community organizer job is still open" (video embedded below the fold with transcript, h/t HotAirPundit):
Republican leadership quickly condemned the plan, which relies heavily on the current Senate bill, as the same government takeover that had already been proposed. House GOP Leader John Boehner said the plan "crippled the credibility" of the upcoming summit.
In more than thirty stories the cable and network news media reacted by defending the White House against Boehner's claim by saying the plan was merely an "opening bid," consulting liberal politicians and outside groups like Brookings Institution, The Nation and Huffington Post, and by pushing Republicans to compromise and accept a bipartisan solution.
Toyota is facing harsh scrutiny from the media and lawmakers - perhaps with justification. But there could be consequences for the U.S. economy.
And as Toyota (NYSE:TM) executives have endured two days of congressional hearings on the issues surrounding their potentially widespread defective products, the most aggressive questioners have been lawmakers from Michigan, home of the Big 3 automakers. A fact that led CNBC "Squawk Box" co-host Becky Quick to question if the federal government, with a huge stake in General Motors and Chrysler, are being a little unfair with Toyota on her Feb. 24 broadcast.
"We've heard from some congressmen, especially those later on in the show about the people and Congress people who are questioning Toyota at this point saying, they are doing this because the government has this big stake in GM?" Quick said. "To me, that seems a little crazy."
Fox's family-friendly "American Idol" is headed down the tubes if Howard Stern and Perez Hilton have anything to do with it.
Stern, while now on XM Sirius Satellite Radio, dominated the public airwaves for more than 20 years as a shock jock. Regular discussions on his show revolved around celebrities' sexual proclivities, complete with explicit language. Strippers and porn stars were regular guests. As of 2005, the FCC had fined him more than any other radio broadcaster to the tune $2.5 million. He migrated to satellite radio to escape FCC rules.
Gossip blogger Hilton built his career by enhancing paparazzi shots of celebrities with crude white drawings of genitalia and bodily fluids and posting them on his site, PerezHilton.com, and outing gay celebrities. He injected politics into the Miss USA pageant last spring as a judge when he asked about same-sex marriage. He continually harassed former Miss California Carrie Prejean on his Web site after she expressed a belief in the traditional view of marriage in response to his question.
After "Idol" judge Simon Cowell, known for his brutal honesty, announced on Jan. 11 that this would be his last season as part of the wildly popular singing competition, Stern and Hilton both pitched themselves as his replacement, and entertainment journalists applauded.
If you're reading this or spending time at politically oriented, new media websites, you are adding to the caustic tone in Washington, D.C.
Such was discussed on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" Wednesday during a roundtable segment wherein no one disagreed with this premise.
Joining Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski were conservative contributor Pat Buchanan, Time's Peter Beinart, and NBC's Savannah Guthrie.
The topic of discussion was the evolution of partisan politics, and although Beinart pointed out how the parties have been much more greatly divided in the past than they currently are, the conversation continually referred back to the Internet being to blame for today's divisions (video embedded below the fold with transcript and commentary, h/t Story Balloon):
It's been almost three weeks since Sarah Palin addressed the Tea Party convention. More than two weeks since Andrea Mitchell did her taunting little imitation of Palin's hand notes. But there was Norah O'Donnell today, still milking the moment to mock Palin.
O'Donnell worked her hand-note reference into a discussion on today's Morning Joe of Scott Brown's vote for the "jobs bill."
Later, on a different subject, after criticizing socialism, Norah wryly observed "I sound like I'm on another network." See Bonus Coverage, below.
Did you think the negative economic reporting would stop once George W. Bush was out of office and Barack Obama was in? It hasn't.
Although you could argue that the press has done its best to make Obama look good despite economic troubles, as Congress debates a jobs bill and other legislation meant to improve the economy before elections in November, could the media be painting a darler economic picture than is accurate?
"I always wanted to work for Fox," Gasparino said. "That was the bottom line. And it's, you know, I don't take chances with stories, but, there is an entrepreneurial spirit in me where I want to do something different. I would like to build something, be part of building something and that is why I came."
CNN's Carol Costello clearly misses the good old days when unions dominated and the "American Dream" was alive and well.
"The American dream, 1950s-style. Middle-class America seemed to have it all then. A nice home, a car, economic security. Sixty years later the Bindners and much of the middle-class think thanks to Uncle Sam all of that is disappearing," Costello said introducing her "broken government report."
Costello ignored the material gains Americans have clearly made since 1950 when families lived in smaller homes, drove one car and before the invention of personal computers, iPods and so many other goods. Instead, she relied on Commerce Department statistics to show a worried middle class angered about "gridlock" and partisanship.
Where would the world be without an independent, citizen-run type of media? It would be in a dark place, according to Media Research Center President and Founder Brent Bozell.
Bozell addressed CPAC on Feb. 20 about the state of the media. He cited how bloggers played a role in unearthing the former White House "green jobs czar" Van Jones past for signing a statement about the September 11 truthers and for stating he was a communist.
"Van Jones was a story that was broken by a blogger," Bozell said. "Say that after me - God bless bloggers, God bless bloggers, God bless bloggers. Now this blogger writes a story about one of the Obama czars. Now these czars, these guys are dangerous for all sorts of reasons. They're not elected. They're not confirmed. And they're not even announced. You just hear about them. They're like maggots. You pick up a rock and you find a czar."
This will certainly be mulled over by the talking heads in the mainstream media for days to come.
At her 2010 Conservative Political Action Committee speech on Feb. 20, conservative author and commentator took the usual shots at the former President Bill Clinton and former Democratic vice presidential nominee John Edwards, but she also let it be known that the she's not a fan of the mainstream media. And she showed how the media totally missed it with the future of the GOP.
"What a difference a year makes," Coulter said. "This time last year, the Republican Party, according to the media - it was finished, dead," Coulter said. "It was the beginning of the Democrat's thousand-year reich."
Former President Ronald Reagan would have prosecuted Dick Cheney for war crimes, Seth MacFarlane (IMDb page), creator, writer and executive producer of the Family Guy, American Dad! and The Cleveland Show animated sit-coms which air Sunday nights on Fox, declared Friday night on the season premiere of HBO’s Real Time with Bill Maher. But President Barack Obama, he rued, is too “chicken s**t” do to it.
To affirming applause from the Los Angeles audience, the left-wing MacFarlane -- who at another point recalled he campaigned for Obama -- pretended he’s an expert on Reagan, asserting Cheney’s advocacy of water-boarding terrorists means:
If Ronald Reagan were President, based on Ronald Reagan’s assertion that no matter who it is -- if it’s the Japanese in World War II, if it’s Pol Pot, if it’s us and we’re just scared -- torture is torture and you prosecute that. I have to believe if Ronald Reagan were President, he would try Dick Cheney for war crimes.
Maher agreed “it is a war crime by international law and our own law,” before MacFarlane fretted Obama won’t prosecute because he’s afraid of losing Republican support for his agenda. Generating even louder applause -- and to the delight of a giggling Maher -- MacFarlane countered that Republicans aren’t going to back Obama’s policies, “so you might as well string them up.”
After Barack Obama's election as the first black president of the United States, we were supposed to have entered a new, post-racial era. However, as many feel it has turned out, any dissent or criticism of the most powerful man in the free world or his agenda draws allegations of "racial tones," as happened on the New York Times Web site on Feb. 18.
Breitbart was accepting the Reed Irvine Accuracy in Media Award for extensively covering one of the most "uncovered" stories of 2009 for corruption within the so-called community activist organization ACORN.
Inspired by a NewsBusters post, blogger Randy Haddock posted a video to his eponymous blog which refutes, in living color, as it were, a claim MSNBC's Keith Olbermann has made about the tea parties.
Haddock prefaced his response to Olbermann's question, "Where are people of color at Tea Parties?" with the case that in asking the question, Olbermann shows how race-obsessed he and other liberals are, whereas conservatives at the Tea Parties welcome any and all persons of any color who share a common belief in limited government:
[T]wo things in particular bother me about his question:
First, his choice of words. People of color? Who are these colored people he’s referring to? What does that mean? It may be because I’m not a native English speaker, but I find this “people of color” business to be really bizarre. So as a Boricua, am I colored? I guess I’m olive but if I hit the beach on a sunny day I can be golden brown. Is he referring strictly to skin color? Culture? Ethnicity? I mean, I’m not that much darker than Mr. Olbermann himself. Do I fall into his “people of color” category?
Or, as I suspect, are “people of color” just code for those who deviate too much from the skin color which Olbermann seems to deem as the standard? I mean, come on, Olbermann has no color, right? He’s white. That ain’t no color. That’s just how it’s supposed to be, right? So, all I can think of is that he means “black.” Black people are colored, and everyone else is just normal and a-OK. Man, this race and colors stuff is difficult to understand!
And secondly, the question is stupid, the premise terribly moronic and the insinuation totally insulting. The Tea Party protesters aren’t racist. Are there a few kooks with nefarious motivations? Sure, every movement has them. It’s nice how, during the Bush years, the MSM did everything they could to whitewash the fringe elements of the antiwar movement, but I digress. What’s Olbermann’s evidence that Tea Parties are overwhelmingly racist? Apparently, that there are no “people of color” at these rallies. That is so blatantly false as to induce uncontrollable laughter. There of people of all backgrounds at the Tea Parties. But even if an event is dominated by a certain race group, what does that prove? Similar to what Glenn Reynolds said earlier this month, if you look at a group of white folks and the first thought that pops into your head is “racists!” then you have some serious issues.
According to ABC, CBS and NBC, an athlete involved in a three-month-old sex scandal is more newsworthy than a statement of principles signed by more than 80 conservative leaders.
Not just more newsworthy. The broadcast network morning shows devoted more than 30 minutes of coverage about Tiger Wood's statement to the press on his sexual "indiscretions" scheduled for Feb. 19. By contrast, the Feb. 17 signing of the Mount Vernon statement by 80 prominent conservative leaders received zero coverage. Both CBS and NBC sent camera crews to the event.
ABC provided the lion's share of the Tiger coverage, giving more than 17 minutes of airtime to the Woods story. A crisis management professional, a family therapist and two sports writers were brought on to speculate about the impact his expected apology would have on Woods' image and career, as well as the pros and cons of his wife Elin appearing alongside him.
Woods coverage on CBS clocked in at more than nine minutes while NBC, currently covering the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, gave Woods only four-and-a-half minutes.
Vice President Joseph Biden's very public wearing of ashes, a Lenten practice for Catholics, on Wednesday led to several befuddled reactions from the mainstream media. Sky News's Kay Burley had to apologize after confusing the ashen mark for an injury. More egregiously, ABC News's Karen Travers omitted the past controversy over his support for legalized abortion, and portrayed him as a devout Catholic.
The Vice President bore the ashes on his forehead as he introduced President Obama at a White House event celebrating the one-year anniversary of the so-called Recovery Act. Burley asked Greg Milam, Sky News's US correspondent, about the mark as they monitored Biden's remarks: "What's happened to his head? I'm sure that's what everybody's asking at home." After a short pause, Milam replied, "Yes, I don't know. It's a simple answer. Maybe we'll get a chance to find out a little later." Burley then remarked, "It looks like he walked into a door, doesn't it? I'm sure that's one of the questions that the networks will be asking him." (video clip above is from Thursday's Morning Joe on MSNBC; audio available here).
On Feb. 19, 2009, one year ago tomorrow, Rick Santelli lost his temper while reporting from the floor of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. The CNBC reporter was angry about bailouts of businesses and homeowners.
His passionate free market rant spoke to many Americans equally distressed about the direction of the nation. The Tea Party movement was born.
On Feb. 16, she appeared (appropriately enough) on Headline News Network's "The Joy Behar Show" to promote as much of herself as humanly possible: her recently released stand-up DVD "She'll Cut a Bitch," her appearance in an upcoming Law & Order episode as a lesbian rights activist (which she claims will garner her an Emmy), and her live comedy act at Madison Square Garden where she'll be "worse than she's ever been."
On the one-year anniversary of the Obama administration's “stimulus” spending bill, ABC, CBS and NBC all eagerly corroborated the White House's claims about how it “saved or created” many jobs and staved off economic disaster, though they all offered a range of numbers and definitions (ABC: “800,000 to 2.4 million new jobs,” CBS: “about 1.8 million” jobs “saved or created” and NBC: “1.6 to 1.8 million jobs have been created so far.”)
ABC and CBS touted anecdotes about companies and government agencies which asserted the spending had prevented layoffs or allowed them to hire new staff. ABC's Jake Tapper cited buses for Santa Monica, construction jobs in Baltimore, “63,000 green jobs” (with a solar panel-maker's CEO declaring “it is working and we're proof of that”) and a school system superintendent who told Tapper the funding “ helped save 61 jobs and create 73 new ones.”
On CBS, Chip Reid began with how “this highway paving equipment company in California canceled plans to lay off 40 workers because of demand created by stimulus projects,” before trumpeting how “in Washington, D.C. about 20 people are working on this road project” where “manager Matthew Johns calls the stimulus a lifesaver.” [audio available here]
Though “many independent economists put the number of jobs saved or created at about 1.8 million,” Reid relayed that “to the great frustration of the White House, most Americans simply refuse to believe it. In a recent CBS News/New York Times poll, a mere 6 percent said the stimulus has created jobs.” Reid's culprit: “That skepticism due in part to a relentless campaign by Republicans who say the stimulus is a bloated, big-government failure.” (The online “Political Hotsheet” echoed Reid's theme: “On Stimulus, Perception Doesn't Match Reality.”)
It's no surprise that Democratic National Committee chair Tim Kaine would agree with the Obama administration about the effectiveness of last year's stimulus packages. That's why CNN's "American Morning" should have at least included a single critical guest Feb. 17.
Kiran Chetry began the interview by citing a CNN poll that showed public skepticism regarding the stimulus.
"What do you say to Americans who feel that this $862 billion was basically wasted?" Chetry asked.
Kaine defended the stimulus by citing a New York Times piece saying that the stimulus "has pretty much done exactly what it was intended to do." The former governor gave the stimulus credit with getting the economy growing again. Kane also said it saved or created 2.4 million jobs.
CPAC, the annual Conservative Political Action Conference begins Feb. 18. Conservative leaders will rally the troops before the mid-term elections in November and discuss the future role of conservatives in politics.
One person who will not be in attendance is Meghan McCain, despite the year-long media attempt to make citizens believe she is somehow representative of conservatives. She tweeted on Feb. 11, "I have no idea where this weird rumor I am speaking at CPAC came from, it isn't true and I will not be attending or speaking."
McCain, the 25-year-old daughter of former Republican presidential nominee John McCain and a writer for The Daily Beast, has taken it upon herself to tell the GOP what needs to be fixed within the party. Because she calls herself a Republican, media outlets have perpetuated the notion that she is also conservative. By doing that, they've pushed a liberal social agenda that directly conflicts with conservative values.
Writer Kathleen Parker, herself no stranger to conservative bashing, praised McCain last spring as "one smart cookie" who "in a matter weeks ... has created a brand, presenting herself as a fresh face of her daddy's party and voice of young conservatives."
Jonathan Capehart of The Washington Post and a contributor to MSNBC, suggested last summer that "maybe what the Republican Party is going to have to do is skip a generation and wait for the Meghan McCains to come of age so they can run for office and take over the mantle of the party."
Either Bill Maher was doing his best effort to impersonate Mel Brooks as King Louis XVI in "History in the World, Part I" or he has a complete and utter disregard for the intellectual competency of the American people.
Maher, a perennial bomb thrower with a hard left ideology appeared on CNN's Feb. 16 "Larry King Live," facing the king of softball interviews, Larry King, and let it be known he thought alleged terrorism plotter Khalid Sheikh Mohammed should be tried in New York City and that health care should be forced through by the Obama administration, despite the wishes of the American people.
And why should the American people's wishes be ignored? They're "not bright enough."
"But what the Democrats never understand is that Americans don't really care what position you take, just stick with one," Maher said. "Just be strong. They're not bright enough to really understand the issues. But like an animal, they can sort of sense strength or weakness. They can smell it on you."
Poor Barack Obama. Hasn't put a foot wrong. Policies just fine. It's just that he's been dealt the cruel fate of . . . being President of the United States.
That was the essence of what Jonathan Capehart, WaPo editorialist, whistled past the liberal graveyard on Morning Joe today. Confronted with the prez's crumbling poll numbers [by 52-44 margin people don't think PBO deserves to be re-elected], Capehart blamed anti-incumbent fever. It's not that Americans are opposed to the Dems' policies, suggested Capehart: they're just frustrated by how little has been accomplished.
Why don't we play a little game of political prognostication? Imagine that, far from being ineffective, Obama/Pelosi/Reid had managed to push through their entire agenda in the last year. Let's focus on three matters:
USA Today just can't move on. It's been over a week since the pro-life Tebow ad aired during the Superbowl - and it wasn't nearly as controversial as the liberals said it would be. Tim Tebow's mom said nice things about her son; Tim hugged her, both of them smiled, and that was it. Most people shrugged and forgot about it. But not USA Today. On Feb. 15, it's Faith & Reason section touted the headline "Tebow pro-family ad leads to surprising 'choice' message."
The article gave the tired argument that even if you're choosing life, it's still a choice. Pam Tebow "chose to ignore doctors" but she still had options open to her. Author of the article Cathy Lynn Grossman, however, painted Tebow's choice as both ignorant and selfish, since the pregnancy could have left her first four children motherless.