Either MSNBC "Hardball" host Chris Matthews let one slip tonight, or it was an extremely poor choice of words.
Following President Barack Obama's Dec. 1 speech, which he announced his intentions for increasing troop levels in Afghanistan, MSNBC followed with wrap-up coverage of his speech with arguably three of their most prominent on-air personalities - "Countdown" host Keith Olbermann, "The Rachel Maddow Show" host Rachel Maddow and Matthews.
Matthews referred to a scene from "Gone with the Wind" about the American Civil War as an example of "excitement" going into a war. He said that was lacking in the room during Obama's speech.
Americans have watched a parade of painful episodes of public humiliation of politicians' wives in sex scandals. But in constructing a list of Top Ten Sex Scandal Details of the Decade for its 20/10 project, Newsweek recruited a porn star named Sasha Grey to slam these wronged spouses as knowing shrews and lecture about the horror of "Bible-belt-infused guilt." The number ten scandal detail on the list was "Governor Sanford's Appalachian Adventure," and Jenny Sanford apparently hadn't been insulted enough:
I have to believe that many women who are married to men with power are aware of affairs, and accept it. Don’t ask, don’t tell; as long as they receive something in exchange from their husband—whether that exchange be children, money, material items, or sex. We create our own morals. It’s once the affair goes public that morals change.
You could call it progress in media bias. For years, liberal journalists have blamed Team Bush for the death of hundreds in Hurricane Katrina. The major media found that theme of fatal incompetence simply irresistible. Time’s Michael Grunwald, who has written in-depth articles and a book about the Army Corps of Engineers, is bringing the focus back to long-standing government policies over decades.
But even Grunwald is using harsh language that Time magazine would usually disparage as talk-radio bluster. He said "Hurricane Katrina was a man-made disaster. And some of us have been screaming about that for several years...those of us who have followed this -- you know, we‘re angry about the Army Corps killing 1,000 people."
The occasion to revisit Katrina came from federal District Judge Stanwood Duval, who ruled in favor of plaintiffs who sued the federal government for compensation over hurricane damage. Duval charged the Army Corps with "monumental negligence" in its maintenance of a man-made shipping channel called the Mississippi River Gulf Outlet:
Don't be surprised if McCain '08 campaign adviser Nicolle Wallace passes up future chances to vent for Rachel Maddow.
Wallace did not appear on the Maddow show, agreeing instead to go on the record off-camera with her criticisms of Sarah Palin's new book, "Going Rogue: An American Life."
Maddow told viewers of her MSNBC show Tuesday that John McCain held a conference call Nov. 13 and asked that if they wanted to respond to Palin's book, to "at least avoid being interviewed about the book on TV," Maddow said --
Rachel Maddow wants you to stop referring to Nidal Hasan as a terrorist. Please. You know what short fuses they have.
Responding to Republicans' condemnation of Hasan's actions as terrorism, Maddow furrowed her brow and played devil's advocate, as befitting an honorary member of the al Qaeda Legal Defense Foundation --
MADDOW: Remember this one? Yes, it is the old paint-the-Democrats-as-soft-on-terror routine. But in order to play that politicizing terrorism, anti-Democrat greatest hit, the Fort Hood case has to be terrorism. Regardless of how you feel about the political issue of politicizing terrorism, it's worth asking -- was Fort Hood, technically speaking, terrorism? It's not just a political question. It's not just a judgment call. It's not just a matter of taste. It's a question to which there is an answer, a legal answer. And the charges today didn't include anything related to terrorism.
New York Times media reporter Brian Stelter looked on Tuesday at MSNBC hosts pushing Team Obama from the left. Stelter stuck to supportive sources who believe they apparently have ideological integrity and independence where Fox News has none. They claim to have little contact with the Obama White House, but the staff there love how they’re supposedly "progressive but not partisan." Stelter explained:
It is certainly reaching the White House. Anita Dunn, the departing White House communications director, calls Mr. Olbermann and Ms. Maddow "progressive but not partisan," and in doing so, distinguishes them from Fox News, which she considers a political opponent.
The MSNBC hosts, she said in an e-mail message last month, "often take issues with the administration’s positions or tactics and are never shy about letting their viewers know when they disagree."
Remember those free health care clinics MSNBC's Keith Olbermann and Rachel Maddow played up back in October after Olbermann's hour-long "Special Comment," about Republican opposition to ObamaCare and/or PelosiCare?
Well, now it's time for their brand of AstroTurf to be put into action. On MSNBC's Nov. 13 "Countdown," fill-in host Lawrence O'Donnell raised the issue about the potential opposition Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., might have over the current health care legislation being debated in the U.S. Senate. And, Landrieu so happens to represent Louisiana, the site of one of Olbermann's politicized free health care clinics.
"Republicans, in a new ad, are targeting conservative Democrat Mary Landrieu of Louisiana for indicating she might, might, allow health care to come up for up or down vote on the Senate floor," O'Donnell said.
This sort of thing an actual journalist would have flagged as dubious, but not Rachel Maddow.
On her MSNBC show this past Monday, Maddow and guest Jeff Sharlet, an author and contributing editor at Harper's Magazine, were talking about the so-called Stupak amendment in the House health bill to prevent weakening of the ban on federal funding of abortion.
Here's how the revelant portion of the conversation went --
MADDOW: Let me ask you about some of the other conventional wisdom here because the sort of conventional explanation for this is that this anti-abortion amendment to health reform resulted mostly from the Catholic bishops pressuring Catholic politicians to support it. But I know that you think that it's bigger than that. Can you explain why?
SHARLET: Well, exact-, I think it's unfair to Catholics, I think it's unfair to evangelicals. First of all, most of the press has focused on Catholics despite the fact that a number of the congressmen involved in this are not Catholic, including Congressman (Joseph) Pitts, R-Pa. (co-sponsor of amendment with Bart Stupak, R D-Mich.), including Congressman (Heath) Shuler (D-N.C.) who you mentioned. And frankly the majority of American Catholics are pro-choice. That's not true of the majority of American evangelicals.
Rachel Maddow left her radio program nearly a year ago when she began hosting her cable show on MSNBC, but on Wednesday she still claimed to be a radio talk show host. While she does still have a devoted timeslot on Air America, what runs is merely an audio version of her MSNBC show.
It's one thing to avoid the "terrorist" label when reporting on Ft. Hood suspect Major Nidal Hasan. It's quite another to say that those who do use it are making a political calculation to "paint the Democrats as soft terror." Yet that's what MSNBC's Rachel Maddow insisted on her Nov. 11 broadcast.
Maddow launched into a minute-and-a-half soliloquy on why it is bad for the Democratic Party when commentators label Hasan a "terrorist." She even attempted to make the case on Hasan's behalf against a terrorism label. Who needs a legal team when you have friends like Maddow and Chris Matthews, who fretted over the legality of Hasan's al Qaeda communications?
"Remember this one? Yes, it is the old ‘paint the Democrats as soft on terror' routine," Maddow said. "But in order to play that politicizing terrorism, anti-Democratic greatest hits, the Fort Hood case has to be terrorism. Now, regardless of how you feel about the political issue of politicizing terrorism, it's worth asking was Fort Hood, technically speaking, terrorism? It's not just a political question. It's not just a judgment call. It's not just a matter of taste. It's a question to which there is an answer, a legal answer."
On Thursday’s Countdown show, as MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann hosted fellow host Rachel Maddow to plug a segment on her show about pro-life Democratic Congressman Bart Stupak’s push to block any ObamaCare proposal that involves taxpayer funding of abortion, Maddow charged that Stupak was being "cowardly" in focusing his pro-life attention "targeting" poor women who "won’t fight back or can’t fight back because they don’t have the resources."
Maddow’s contention came as Olbermann – ignoring the political reality that not only does an individual Congressman have little if any influence in a President’s choice of Supreme Court nominees, but that even mustering a two-thirds vote to overturn Roe vs. Wade by constitutional amendment would be nearly impossible in any Congress, let alone an overwhelmingly Democratic one – tried to undermine Stupak’s moral authority on abortion by suggesting the Michigan Democrat was not willing to "fight that fight in the open."
The left has gotten a lot of "giggles" over the term "teabaggers" in describing Americans who attend the tea parties. For those of you who don't know, teabagging is a perverse sexual term. It is interesting to me that the left not only knew the term, but seemed very comfortable using it. I guess I shouldn't have been surprised.
On Sunday’s Meet the Press, MSNBC hostess Rachel Maddow broke out the ten-foot-pole of disgust for losing Virginia gubernatorial candidate Creigh Deeds. But back in September, she suggested Bob McDonnell’s thesis from "Pat Robertson’s Liberty University" would sink him: "Here’s where Republican electoral chances stop being separate from the wild-excesses of the conservative movement."
Oops. Actually, double oops, Miss Maddow: Robertson’s college is Regent University. Isn’t it amazing that her liberal fans always tout how she "does her homework"?
Here’s Maddow on Sunday:
I think that if, if Republicans could choose to have anything to extrapolate from the, from the Bob McDonnell race, it would be to have as an opponent Creigh Deeds. If they could pick anything that they wanted. I mean, Creigh Deeds was a, was a marketably ineffective Democratic candidate, essentially running away from the president, running from everything popular in the Democratic agenda and doing it in a stylistically poor way. So I'm sure he's a very nice guy; he was a very bad candidate.
Rachel Maddow on Friday apologized for her previous day's Constitution Preamble gaffe by using "Schoolhouse Rock" to educate her viewers.
As NewsBusters reported, Maddow on Thursday ridiculed House minority leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) for claiming during that day's "House Call" rally the historic phrase "We hold these truths to be self-evident" came from the Preamble to the Constitution.
In so doing, Maddow gaffed herself by claiming there isn't a Preamble to the Constitution.
Maybe after reading our article on the subject the MSNBC host felt the need to make a correction (video embedded below the fold with partial transcript, h/t Jeff Poor):
When in doubt, cite the need for more government funding of health care. You won't find an argument on MSNBC.
Among the guests offering their perspectives about the Fort Hood massacre on Rachel Maddow's show last night was Salon.com national correspondent Mark Benjamin, who tried to downplay growing evidence that suspected assailant Nidal Malik Hasan was motivated by a jihadist's hatred of America --
BENJAMIN: There are people that believe that this is a person that was suffering some sort of secondary post-traumatic stress from treating soldiers and there are people that believe he was somehow influenced by Muslim extremism. I think it could be a combination of both. I certainly have met mental health care providers in the military who after sitting all day long and listening to some really disturbing tales, you know, when they're treating these soldiers coming back from Iraq, and in combination with the fact that they're overwhelmed, overworked, don't have the resources to do their jobs, become extremely stressed and frazzled. And there's no reason to not think that this could, this could ultimately lead to that kind of a conclusion.
Did you know the United States Constitution doesn't have a Preamble?
Well, that's what the oh so arrogant, high and mighty MSNBC host Rachel Maddow told her audience Thursday night.
In a segment attacking the attendees of yesterday's "House Call" protests on Capitol Hill, Maddow chided Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) for claiming he was quoting from the Preamble of the Constitution (video embedded below the fold with partial transcript, relevant section at 2:05, file photo):
Does the National Endowment for the Humanities promote liberals? On her Twitter page, MSNBC leftist Rachel Maddow is promoting her Saturday schedule with a panel discussion on the far-right nature of the military since Vietnam:
For example, whereas much of the nation and the military would once have recognized as accurate the sentiment of Jim Webb’s fictional hero in A Country Such As This – “I ain’t any Republican. I ain’t a Democrat neither. I’m a Navy man, that’s all” – the norm among uniformed personnel today, according to one highly regarded military journalist, is identification with the stridency-prone wing of the Republican Party.
It's probably safe to assume many Democrats weren't happy about last evening's election results, no matter how they spun them and how they pertained to President Barack Obama. And to his credit, that's something MSNBC "Hardball" host Chris Matthews admitted was not good for the Democratic Party.
However, MSNBC, the so-called "Place for Politics" hyped up its Nov. 3 "Super Tuesday" election coverage throughout the day (emphasis added):
"Tonight, Super Tuesday continues on MSNBC with live coverage of ‘Decision ‘09' inside the key elections that will set the stage for a 2010 political battle," the announcer on the TV spot said. "Follow the results on MSNBC's primetime line-up. Plus, special live editions of ‘Countdown with Keith Olbermann' at 10, ‘The Rachel Maddow Show' at 11 and ‘Hardball with Chris Matthews' at midnight. Super Tuesday continues tonight on MSNBC, the place for politics."
Yet another example of the folly of assigning liberals to guard duty.
Joining Rachel Maddow on her MSNBC show Thursday to vent about that pesky wabbit Joe Lieberman was Fire Dog Lake firedoglake blogger Jane Hamsher.
Democrats wield considerable leverage over Lieberman, Hamsher opined, to keep him from joining a GOP filibuster of ObamaCare or punish him if he does --
MADDOW: ... I think you're right to point out that other senators sort of gently expressing their disapproval of his proverbial toplessness at this point is a bigger deal than it would be in the real world, that their words do actually sort of calibrate differently. But what leverage can they really bring to bear on him in order to get him to get in line?
But Maddow, on her Oct. 28 show, was able to merge the two topics in an attack on Fox Business Channel's John Stossel. Stossel recently came from ABC as a host of "20/20" to host a weekly opinion show on the Fox's business channel. But in Maddow's infinite wisdom, Stossel's participation in AFP activities somehow taints him.
"But first, one more thing about health reform and its politics," Maddow said. "Last week, we reported that Fox News contributor and soon-to-be Fox Business Channel [sic] host John Stossel will be headlining protest rallies against health reform staged by Americans for Prosperity, the lobbying group which refuses to disclose donors while rabble-rousing about the dangers of government-forced health care."
Want to be noticed by any one of the hosts that have a primetime show on MSNBC's weeknight lineup? Just figure out a way to make Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn. the subject matter, and there's an excellent chance either Ed Schultz, Chris Matthews, Keith Olbermann or Rachel Maddow will take a shot at it, or her, during their shows.
In the Oct. 25 Washington Post, George Will penned a column about Bachmann, outlining her ascendancy into the national spotlight, which told of her start in politics and how she grew to become reviled by the left. And it was just a matter time before one of the charming personalities on MSNBC made some sort of remarks about the column, albeit two days later. That came on Olbermann's Oct. 27 "Countdown" broadcast.
Can you believe it, MSNBC's Rachel Maddow joked with Dallas Morning News reporter Wayne Slater -- George W. Bush, along with George H.W. and Laura Bush, have been lined up as speakers at Get Motivated! seminars.
The conversation on Maddow's show Tuesday night dripped with condescension, as if to say -- what losers!
Not surprisingly, both Maddow and Slater neglected to mention something that many viewers, even Maddow fans, might consider newsworthy -- the younger Bush is the sixth former president snagged by Get Motivated! to speak at their popular seminars.
Fortunately, this oversight was duly corrected by Maddow's first guest the following night -- Get Motivated! co-founder Tamara Lowe. Here's how the conversation went --
Big shock here - MSNBC's Rachel Maddow agrees with the White House, which is the Fox News Channel is not really a news organization.
Sarcasm aside, on her Oct. 23 MSNBC program, Maddow attempted to justify the Obama administration's tack over recent months with Fox News. She laid out a series of events over the past few days that indicated an escalation of the feud between Fox News and the White House, specifically an effort to exclude Fox News from the White House pool.
"Well yesterday the White House said that Fox would not be among the networks invited to interview Ken Feinberg in one of these round-robin pool interviews and the other networks came to Fox's defense," Maddow reported. "They said they would bow out of interviewing Mr. Feinberg's themselves unless Fox was included, so Fox was included."
Throughout the previous administration, MSNBC host Keith Olbermann would nightly attack President George W. Bush and members of his administration and regularly bash some conservative personalities for being too cozy with Bush.
However, when he and his MSNBC colleague Rachel Maddow engage in the same brand of coziness, meeting with President Barack Obama earlier this week, it's no longer an indiscretion. Instead, it becomes justified - since Bush did it. Olbermann appeared on the Oct. 23 "The Rachel Maddow Show" and he and Maddow responded to critics. Maddow asked him to respond to particular comments from former White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove, now a Fox News contributor, that there would be an outcry had the Bush administration committed something similar.
The White House has berated Fox News for days now for purportedly pushing an agenda and calling it news. So Americans may have been surprised when, as reported by Noel Sheppard, Obama invited two of MSNBC's most divisive liberal pundits--Keith Olbermann and Rachel Maddow--to the White House for an off-the-record briefing.
As it turns out, Maddow and Olbermann were only two of the left's heavyweights at the briefing. Yesterday, TVNewser received from the White House a complete list of names. Virtually all of them have their histories of shilling for the administration or Democrats generally, and of bashing conservatives.
Let us review the colorful histories of these pundits, and the reader can decide whether they "have a perspective," in the words of White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel (in the context of a Fox News attack).
As to be expected from a person who plays a journalist on TV -- a correction more accurately described as a "correction".
With forced ebullience, Rachel Maddow sought to set the record straight on her MSNBC show Monday about a dubious quote from radio host Rush Limbaugh, which Maddow claimed back on June 3 that Limbaugh had once stated. As in, last spring. It's now autumn. In fairness to Maddow, these things take time, especially for those busy providing cover for the left wing of the Democratic Party.
Here's what Maddow said about the incendiary quote, which she cited in June without attribution. You know, as required by actual news organizations --
MADDOW: And finally, a quote falsely attributed to talk show host Rush Limbaugh recently resurfaced during the debate over whether or not he should or would be part of a group bidding to buy the St. Louis Rams football team. On June 3 as I was reporting on opposition to then-Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor, I was among the people who erroneously referred to the quote as if Mr. Limbaugh had said it. To set the record straight, Rush Limbaugh apparently never said that Martin Luther King Jr.'s assassin should receive the Medal of Honor and I was in error when we reported that he had. Mea culpa.
Less than a week after likening conservative blogger Michelle Malkin to a “mashed-up bag of meat” on his Countdown show, MSNBC host Keith Olbermann on Monday called out former President George H.W. Bush for daring to call him and fellow MSNBC host Rachel Maddow “sick puppies,” as Olbermann described Bush’s words from a recent interview as a “weird term."
As he characterized Bush as being hypocritical for making the comment while denouncing the incivility in American politics, Olbermann accused Bush of helping to create the climate of incivility himself in 1988 with the Willie Horton ad, although the ad Olbermann was referring to which showed a photograph of Horton – and which Olbermann displayed images of – was produced by an independent group, the National Security Political Action Committee. The Bush campaign never used Horton’s image, but instead ran the “Revolving Door” ad attacking Michael Dukakis’s support for a prison furlough program.