Amid criticism of CNN for its recent decision to hire RedState editor-in-chief Erick Erickson as a political commentator, RedState blogger Dave Poff offered up a defense of his boss, noting that one of the reasons CNN would want to hire Erickson is the fact that he "isn't an F-bomb flinging chimp for the party line":
Tell me again how it is that Erickson is evil for starting in this business as an unpaid member, doing well enough at it to get hired on to RUN the place, and is now being asked to add his 2 cents worth on a freaking political News program? Oh, yeah, I forgot-it's because he's articulate, intelligent, experienced...isn't an F-bomb flinging chimp for the party line. [emphasis in original]
I guess Poff didn't read Erickson's response last year to Justice David Souter's decision to retire from the Supreme Court:
Of course, this isn't the first time a RedState blogger apparently overlooked some of Erickson's comments. As Media Matters' Ben Dimiero noted, RedState blogger Hogan wrote that media figures who called Sen. Jim Bunning's recent block on legislation a "filibuster" were "freaking idiots." Unfortunately for Hogan, Erickson had at least twice previously called Bunning's action a "filibuster."
The Weekly Standard's Bill Kristol reacts to the self-executing rule:
A memo from a top aide to Maryland Democrat Chris Van Hollen late last week counseled other Democratic staffers to tell their bosses not to worry, that "things like reconciliation and what the rules committee does is INSIDE BASEBALL." Yesterday House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer told reporters, "I don't think any American...is going to make the distinction" between the Slaughter procedure and a straightforward vote on the legislation. "Process is interesting, particularly to all of us around this room. But in the final analysis, what is interesting to the American public is what does this bill do for them and their families."
In other words: the American public doesn't care about how our representatives govern us--which is to say, about how we govern ourselves. Whether Congress follows its rules, whether there is democratic accountability, whether there is constitutional probity--none of this matters according to Hoyer. Rather, the self-centered and self-concerned American people only care about the (alleged) results of the legislation.
That second paragraph is about as dishonest as you can get. There's no reason to believe Congress won't "follow its rules" or maintain "constitutional probity" -- reconciliation and self-executing rules have been used in the past by Republicans. Kristol offers no explanation for why either procedure is undemocratic, inconsistent with Congressional rules, or unconstitutional -- he just pretends that's a given.
Kristol may as well have written "In other words: the American people doesn't care about whether our representatives beat puppies to death with hammers." Yes, it's true: If Democrats said anything like that, they'd be crazy! But they didn't.
I'll be making my first appearance in Second Life tonight at 9pm ET on Virtually Speaking which describes itself as "live, in-depth, conversations with writer, publishers, scientists, educators, pundits and public officials before a lively, well informed and chatty virtual studio audience."
CLICK HERE to join in the conversation at 9pm ET.
Fox News is the "scene of the crime" on health care "falsehoods and myths" an unnamed White House official told Politico's Mike Allen in the lead up to President Obama's sit-down interview with the conservative network last night:
A White House official: "Many of the falsehoods and myths about health reform gained traction with Glenn Beck and others on FOX, so the President is returning to the scene of the crime to make the final sale. As we have said, we will work with Fox where it serves our communications interests, and this does."
Remember last month when Glenn Reynolds wrote an op-ed in the WSJ and fabricated the claim that "millions" of Tea Party activists had taken to the streets in the last year to protest Obama? And remember how Reynolds never fessed up to the fabrication?
Maybe Reynolds was just being a good misinformation soldier, because the phony idea that "millions" have protested has since been endorsed by Glenn Beck himself, which means this fake fact is now certified for all right-wing use. (`Wingers have been lying about crowd sizes for months now, in en effort to boost the cause.)
Anyway, I was recalling the comical "millions" claim while reading about the embarrassingly small turnout for the "kill-the-bill" health care rally in Washington, D.C. this week. Best estimate? A "few hundred" people showed up.
But just wait a few weeks. In the hands of Reynolds and Beck we'll soon be told that tens of thousands stormed the D.C. streets in mid-March to protest health care reform, right?
UPDATED: More "millions" action from the heartland. Actually, this report came from Lebanon, PA., where Tea Party folks were supposed to rally outside their local Congressman's office and protest Obama's health care push.
Ready for the turnout total? Two. As in, one and then two people showed up. They were promptly dwarfed by a pro-health care crowd.
But pay not attention. It's millions, I tell you, millions.
UPDATED: Today on his radio show Beck is hyping a "huge" anti-health care rally for Saturday in the nation's capitol. I wonder if it will top the "two million" who marched last September?
Michelle Malkin and Rush Limbaugh are not going to be happy about this WSJ news article. Why? Because both have been at the forefront of an hysterical, fanatical right-wing campaign to paint the negotiations over the pending health care vote as being borderline criminal as a supposed corrupt and out of control Obama adopts "Chicago-style politics" and bribes his way to passage.
The whole thing is "obscene and vulgar," Malkin whined on Fox News this morning.
But oops, according to today's WSJ (owned by Murdoch!), none of that is true. In fact, Obama's vote-getting style is rather laid back.
Headline [emphasis added]:
Obama Lobbying Style: All Ears; In Effort to Win Lawmaker Health Votes, President Listens Rather than Arm-Twists
From the article:
It was a moment typical of Mr. Obama's lobbying style—hard-core listening more than Lyndon Johnson-style arm-twisting.
Lawmakers say the president knows their positions in detail and they leave with their egos stroked. But, for better or worse, he doesn't strike fear into their hearts about the consequences of opposing him.
Curse that liberal WSJ.
On the March 18 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends, the following on-screen graphic aired while teasing a segment on health care reform:
From a March 17 Politifact.com post:
On his March 9, 2010, talk show, Rush Limbaugh claimed that, "fishing is on the verge becoming a privilege controlled by Barack Obama." He went on to say that he's only had a few experiences with the sport, but that, "I know a lot of people, former professional athletes, who go into shock after hearing they can't go fishing anymore because of Obama."
To support his claim, Limbaugh points to an article that appeared on ESPNOutdoors.com on March 9, 2010. The article, written by Robert Montgomery, reported that, "The Obama administration will accept no more public input for a federal strategy that could prohibit U.S. citizens from fishing the nation's oceans, coastal areas, Great Lakes, and even inland waters." This quote was pulled from the Web site of left-wing media watchdog Media Matters. Montgomery later changed his column, so the original language is no longer on the ESPNOutdoors site. But more about that later.
Like many things we check at PolitiFact, this claim is like sausage: it went in the meat processor that is the Internet as one thing and came out quite different. An opinion piece that argued Obama's effort could ban some fishing was chopped up, reprocessed and put back together as a claim that Obama wants to ban all fishing. In fact, the draft framework says nothing about banning fishing. Limbaugh has taken an early discussion about the use of waterways and twisted it to make it sound like Obama is outlawing a popular pastime. While the panel's recommendation could change fishing practices in some areas, the framework is still in draft form; the administration has not made any final decisions on what the framework will look like. But Limbaugh is grossly distorting the truth. Pants on Fire!
From Ralph Peters' March 18 New York Post column:
The president's glee in humiliating the Brits stems from his ties to Kenya at an impressionable age, back when liberation rhetoric was in vogue. He behaves as if the Brits still rule in Nairobi, whipping servants and potting lions from the veranda. (This freeze-dried activist world-view also nudges Obama into emotional sympathy with the likes of Venezuela's Hugo Chavez and imbues him with a rosy picture of Russia.)
Regarding Israel, a lifetime of extremist associations has infected Obama with an emotional loathing for the Jewish state and a romantic vision of Palestinian terrorists as freedom fighters. (Anti-Israeli and naked anti-Jewish rhetoric is endemic within left-wing hate-church congregations, such as that led by the Rev. Jeremiah Wright.)
Betraying Israel may give you emotional satisfaction, sir, but it will bring us no lasting benefits. Israel is, literally, flesh of our flesh. Don't stick a knife in it.
The Post posted a photo of Jeremiah Wright with Peters' column, with a caption stating: "Obama: Did he imbibe distaste for Israel from pal Rev. Wright?":
After airing portions of his interview with President Obama, Special Report host Bret Baier had on regular Fox News guest A.B. Stoddard Brit Hume as well as Fox News personalities Juan Williams, Brit Hume, Charles Krauthammer, and Stephen Hayes to analyze the interview. Each of the analysts on this supposed "fair and balanced" show panned Obama's performance in their initial comments. Krauthammer called Obama's performance "marginal at best"; Stoddard and Williams called Obama "defensive"; Hayes said that Obama was "at his worst" and "dishonest"; and Hume claimed that Obama refused to answer one of Baier's questions "in any satisfactory way."
From the March 17 edition of Fox News' Special Report with Bret Baier: