At a time when the government is facing billions of dollars in cuts to programs that many Republicans deem as wasteful, it seems that the only spending Democrats want to address is Rep. Paul Ryan's expensive taste in wine, even though they have past ignored a number of instances of wasteful Democratic spending on the taxpayer's dime.
Last Friday, Talking Points Memo published a piece criticizing Ryan for sipping a glass of wine from a $350 bottle of Pinot Noir. Onlooker Susan Feinberg, an associate business professor at Rutgers, took pictures of Ryan and his two economist friends sipping the wine before approaching Ryan and asking how he could live with himself for dropping hundreds of dollars on wine while arguing for cuts to programs benefitting the poor and elderly.
The New York Times on Friday once again proved itself to have absolutely no clue how budgets work.
In its editorial "Negotiating the Debt Ceiling on a Knife's Edge," the Times - like so many other math-challenged "news" organizations in America today - blamed the current debt ceiling woes on the Bush tax cuts and Republican refusal to raise revenues:
Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin praised Rep. Paul Ryan’s (R-Wis.) willingness to work on entitlement reform while on the Senate floor Wednesday stating, “I don’t disagree with Paul Ryan saying we have got to look honestly at Medicare.”
As he normally does on "Inside Washington," PBS's Mark Shields Friday was waxing moronic about Republican plans to balance the budget.
Not pleased by the fictional account on display, syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer challenged his fellow panelist saying, "Democrats have not even produced a budget for 2012. What’s their budget?" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh had more fun Friday with what Mark Halperin said on "Morning Joe" the previous day.
In Limbaugh's view, you can't call Obama the D-word on MSNBC, but you can debase conservatives however you want including saying they're "racist, sexist, bigot homophobes" (video follows with transcript and commentary, minor vulgarity warning):
CNN asked Wednesday if a person can follow "both Ayn Rand and Jesus," pulling quotes from both a Democrat and a fellow at the Ayn Rand Center for Individual Rights to answer that Christianity and Rand's philosophy oppose each other. Buried deep within the post on CNN's Belief Blog was the contrary view that Christians can adopt certain tenants of Rand's philosophy while rejecting others contrary to their faith.
The question is popular among Christians at odds with the Republican budget authored by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.), a Catholic, who is a fan of Rand and her defense of capitalism and individualism. The American Values Network (AVN) in particular has tried to make known his endorsement of Rand and pitch it side-by-side with her anti-religious beliefs.
And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? -- Matthew 7:4
On a somewhat slow Thursday night, let's have a good chuckle. On his MSNBC show this evening, Cenk Uygur jumped on a poll showing Paul Ryan with a 26% unfavorability rating to declare that America "can't stand" the Wisconsin congressman and that the 26% unfavorable rating is "disastrous."
The MacIver Institute, a Wisconsin-based free-market think tank, has released a new video exploring the essential philosophy that underlies many liberal economic policies of late:the belief that the government, not the individual has the foremost right to the nation's wealth. Check out their new video with commentary by Rep. Paul Ryan after the break, and let us know your thoughts in the comments.
Newsweek's Evan Thomas on Friday tried to float the typical media meme that neither Party is doing anything to solve our nation's budget crisis.
Unfortunately for him, fellow "Inside Washington" panelist Charles Krauthammer accurately noted that the Republicans have offered a proposal to cut $6.6 trillion in the next ten years, "but the Democrats have done nothing except to demagogue the plan and to destroy it" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
CBS hounded four Republicans from the left during a town hall on the economy which aired on Tuesday's Early Show. Bob Schieffer, Erica Hill, and Rebecca Jarvis pressed Reps. Paul Ryan and Allen West, Senator Tom Coburn, and South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley to consider tax hikes to deal with the deficit. Schieffer also specifically accused the three members of Congress of "doing nothing" to fix the economy.
The two online questions which Jarvis took from viewers touted Democratic talking points about deficits under former President George W. Bush and how cutting the federal budget would lead to an increase in the unemployment rate, due to the laying off of federal employees. She also vigorously pursued both Rep. Ryan and Rep. West. about the issue of jobs. In the first instance, the CBS business correspondent used an earlier answer from Haley, which emphasized the issue, to actually accuse the greater Republican Party of not paying enough attention to this issue, as well with the overall issue of the economy:
If I'd heard the following words, instead of reading them, I might have assumed they were being delivered by a President Obama impressionist on "Saturday Night Live."
But the words were from Obama himself in his latest weekly radio address. "I wish I could tell you there was a quick fix to our economic problems," he said. "But the truth is we didn't get into this mess overnight, and we won't get out of it overnight. It's going to take time."
In the '80s the liberal media filled the airwaves with tales of woe from the homeless as a way to distract viewers from the runaway success of Reaganomics. In the 2000s, the same media chatted with one frustrated gas station customer after another to slam then-President George W. Bush.
However in 2011, with over 44 million Americans on food stamps, a new high according to the latest data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (See Table 2), the Big Three broadcast network news programs have been virtually devoid of anecdotal sob stories of moms and dads struggling to pay for their kids' box of Frosted Flakes, as a way to hammer Barack Obama's failed economic policies.
"I am fairly certain that when Paul Ryan first decided to publicly share his admiration of Ayn Rand, he could not have imagined it would lead to him speed-walking to his SUV to avoid a young Catholic trying to give him a Bible and telling him to pay more attention to the Gospel of Luke," Time's Amy Sullivan snarked in a June 3 Swampland blog post.
New York Times columnist Paul Krugman demonstrated perfectly Friday evening the double-talk required from America's left to convince the public Medicare is fine despite recent warnings by its Trustees that it will go bankrupt in thirteen years without major changes.
In his blog posting at the Times website, the Nobel laureate insisted the senior health insurance program "is sustainable in its current form" - as long as changes are made to what it covers, that is:
The latest Social Security Trustees Report tells us that the program will be insolvent by the year 2037. The combined unfunded liability of Social Security and Medicare has reached nearly $107 trillion in today's dollars. That is about seven times the size of the U.S. economy and 10 times the size of the national debt. Those entitlement programs, along with others, account for nearly 60 percent of federal spending. They are what Congress calls non-discretionary spending. About half of discretionary spending is for national defense. Each year, non-discretionary spending consumes a higher and higher percentage of the federal budget.
In an exchange with Pat Buchanan on Thursday’s “Morning Joe,” MSNBC reporter Norah O’Donnell demonstrated just how out of touch she is when it comes to her view of the state of the American economy (video follows page break):
It never ceases to amaze me what people on MSNBC are willing to say while cameras are rolling.
On Wednesday, the perilously liberal Cenk Uygur - with a straight face no less! - told Congressman Brian Bilbray (R-Calif.) in the midst of a budget discussion, "I'm actually a fiscal conservative" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
Debbie Wasserman Schultz, new chairwoman of the DNC, falsely claimed Sunday that the Ryan Medicare plan would deny care to seniors with preexisting medical conditions and that all future beneficiaries of Medicare would be abandoned by the Ryan plan and have to buy their own insurance from a private company.
As reported by both FactCheck.org and Washington Post, both of her Democratic talking points are simply untrue. In reality, according to the two sites, the Ryan plan specifically says that insurance companies "must agree to offer insurance to all Medicare beneficiaries" and subsidizes future beneficiaries so they can buy private insurance through a Medicare exhange program set up by the government.
Read what Wasserman-Schultz had to say after the break, and let us know what you think in the comments.
Appearing on Friday's NBC Today, Meet the Press host David Gregory largely dismissed the possibility of Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan entering the 2012 presidential race: "He's got some of his own problems in terms of being the intellectual force behind Medicare reform that is actually hurting the Republican Party."
While Gregory noted that Ryan "didn't close the door" to a potential run, he played up the idea that reforming Medicare would be a political loser in the campaign: "...as they [Republicans] found out in New York-26, in that upstate New York race, that this is an issue that Democrats are going to be able to use against the Republicans if they don't change their message about how Medicare's going to be changed."
How did so flawed a man as Newt Gingrich get to the top of his party in the 1990s? For that matter, how did so flawed a man as Bill Clinton get to the top of our government in the 1990s? And — here I am giving you a hint to the answer for the above questions — how did so flawed a man as Dominique Strauss-Kahn get to the top of the International Monetary Fund and of French politics? All are about the same age. All have similar, shall we say, recreations. The answer is that they came from what is called the 1960s generation. Now they are gone. There will be temporary reprises — more court appearances for DSK, an occasional public appearance for Bill, some more catastrophic missteps on the campaign trail for Newt — but for all intents and purposes, they are history.
The potential for over-the-top advertising from Democrats to defend Medicare is definitely there, Rachel Maddow told her MSNBC audience Monday.
She should know, since her show of late is little more than a Medicare commercial for Democrats.
As she talked about the next day's special election in New York's 26th House district, Maddow described Jim Martin, chairman of the 60 Plus advocacy group, stumping for Republican candidate Jane Corwin (video after page break) --
Charles Krauthammer said Tuesday that the press are so in bed with President Obama that they are actually supporting Democrat lies about Medicare and Congressman Paul Ryan's (R-Wisc.) plan to save it.
Appearing on the "O'Reilly Factor," the syndicated columnist also told the host that Fox News is "extremely powerful" because it "broke the monopoly that liberals had on all the media for about 30 years" (video follows with transcript and commentary):