Ah, remember that January press chestnut? (It's not old enough to be considered a classic, so maybe it's just in recurrent mode right now.)
Remember when the press robotically typed up that fictitious GOP claim that if Scott Brown won the Mass. special election, corrupt Dems would delay in seating him so they could pass all kinds of bills without him there. Remember how the press kept doing that despite the fact there was no evidence to support the would-be conspiracy theory? i.e. The claim of Democratic corruption was built around potential malfeasance.
Well look at the headlines today and what do we learn? Not only aren't Dems delaying Brown's arrival to the U.S. Senate, they're seating him early.
It's good so many Beltway scribes wasted their time pushing the phony GOP line about Dems not seating Brown, right?
Ugh, we've been down this bumpy road before. In fact, not that long ago, the Times had to run a correction because, as Media Matters pointed out to his editor, Malcolm had butchered some polling data in order to make his darling, Sarah Palin, look really, really popular. (She isn't.)
Well, time to roll out the latest Malcolm polling train wreck. And frankly, after watching pileup after pileup, it's hard to imagine that all these polling blunders (which always favor Republicans) are innocent mistakes.
Covering Obama's Q&A yesterday with Democrats, Laura Bush's former flack wrote [emphasis added]:
Today the president went before the Democratic Senate Policy Committee, a hometown crowd, some of them worried by the president's poll drops and loss of agenda control, especially those running this year in what appears to be developing as a political climate receptive to change people can believe in -- for Republicans.
And so, speaking of the devil, Harry Reid, the Senate Majority Leader with a lot of money and trouble back home in Nevada, makes sure in this session to give TV face time to some similarly troubled colleagues -- Blanche Lincoln of Arkansas, Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, Michael Bennet of Colorado and the old ex-GOP guy from Pennsylvania.
According to Malcolm, Gillibrand is facing trouble "back home," just like Reid and Lincoln, among others. But in truth, Malcolm is just making stuff up.
Because according to the most recent polling, here's how much trouble the senator faces "back home":
According to these numbers, Gillibrand's job approval rating is 42-38 - her highest score since she was tapped last January by Gov. David Paterson to fill former Sen. Hillary Clinton's vacant seat.
But her favorability is 33-22, with 44 percent still saying they haven't heard enough about her to form an opinion.
Gillibrand leads her potential primary challenger, Harold Ford Jr., 38-18 with 40 percent of Democrats undecided. Either Gillibrand or Ford would easily defeat the lone announced GOP US Senate candidate, Bruce Blakeman. (44-27 for her, 35-26 for him).
Kirsten Gillibrand, at least, will have her blood pressure reduced by the knowledge that she is still ahead of former Congressman Harold Ford Jr. by a wide margin in a head-to-head matchup, 44 percent to 27 percent. (Labor activist Jonathan Tasini nabs 4 percent.) Since the previous Marist poll in mid-January, Gillibrand has gained a point while Ford gained 3 percent in that contest.
And going back a bit, here's the Gillibrand polling results from two weeks ago:
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) would crush former Rep. Harold Ford Jr. (D-Tenn.) in a Senate primary matchup, according to a new Siena Research Institute poll out Monday.
Gillibrand commands 41 percent to Ford's 17 percent in the poll, which places labor organizer Jonathan Tasini in third, with 5 percent.
When I grow up, I want to be an LA Times blogger, so I can make stuff up for a living.
UPDATED: BTW, If Malcolm doesn't get paid by Palin for his incessant cheerleading, he ought to. I mean, honestly, if he wants a job as a Palin flack, can't he just ask her privately rather than auditioning in public? It's just embarrassing to watch:
Unlike most of her party's stiff-suited talking heads on Capitol Hill, Palin connects with millions of regular Americans who know about hunting and union husbands working two jobs and going to church and the thrill of snowmobiling and family hurdles like Downs syndrome and teen pregnancy.
UPDATED: While hyping Palin's supposedly brilliant decision to speak at the Tea Party convention this weekend, Malcolm dutifully plays dumb about the mountain of controversy surrounding it -- controversy from within the Tea Party movement itself.
From Erik Rush's February 4 WorldNetDaily column:
The way some of you have gone after this bill, you'd think this was some ... Bolshevik plot.
-- President Obama, Jan. 29, 2010, to GOP members of the House
Now, why on earth might people suspect someone who's been immersed in Marxist ideology since he came out of the chute of masterminding a Bolshevik-style plot? Actually, I'm glad Obama brought it up; he saved me the trouble. Regular readers of this column are aware that I've made this claim regarding nearly everything Obama has done, from his involvement in mortgage-securities politics (even before he became president) to health-care legislation.
The "Bolshevik plot" statement itself, according to a professional I consulted in the area of psychological pathology (yes, I do that, because I don't pretend to be a psychologist), might be a variant of psychological projection (sometimes called Freudian Projection). You know, like the guy who says to his wife, "Jeez, honey -- it's not like I'm cheating on you," when in fact, he is. He's trying to allay her suspicions whilst gauging them at the same time. Judging from the materials I've read by psychologists and lay people on Obama's alleged mental twists, I can only come to the conclusion that the signs thereof are pretty apparent.
But all of this borders on the irrelevant. The current economic crisis was orchestrated. Health-care reform, Obama's past spending and his new budget all have the same objective: manipulation of the economy toward consolidation of unprecedented power. Obama could possess any number of dangerous psychological maladies; for now, he's still the president, and his ideology presents far more peril than the mind that harbors it.
Whatever the case, if he mentions the film "Soylent Green" once, I'm heading for the hills.
Twice this week, Bill O'Reilly referred to Glenn Beck as "every man sitting on a bar stool."
As anyone who's ever worked for a while as a bartender can attest, bartenders meet a lot of different people. Most of them good people.
But amidst all the good people, there's always one guy at the end of the bar.
Sometimes he's loud. Sometimes he's obnoxious. Sometimes he just talks to himself.
But he's always alone. And he's always the center of his own world.
Such is Glenn Beck.
After O'Reilly used the line* on Jon Stewart during a rare Stewart appearance on the Factor, Stewart asked the obvious: "Every man's got a show?"
Indeed, Beck has his own Fox News show, his own nationally syndicated radio show and a $3 million book deal.
Just like every man.
Throw in the revenues from his website and ticket sales at his speaking events and Business Insider estimated he was set to make $18 million in 2009.
Just like every man.
Beck has been on the radio since he was 15, first as a DJ and later as a talk show host.
Just like every man.
But what about what Beck actually says?
Would every man accuse the president of the United States of having a "deep-seated hatred for white people or the white culture"?
No, but one man did.
More importantly, would every man use the almost unparalleled access to multiple media outlets -- perhaps only Oprah tops him - to smear and personally attack those with whom he disagrees, traffic in ridiculous conspiracy theories, and instill fears in millions of Americans?
No, but one man does.
Glenn Beck is not every man. He is just one man -- who, like O'Reilly, knows that the "every man" myth sells.
*O'Reilly's attempts to portray Beck as "every man" warrant a look back at David Cross' absolute annihilation of similar attempts to portray George 'Dubya' Bush as "every man":
'I'm a straight shooter, man. I'm a Washington outsider. I'm such a Washington outsider and just like you because I'm sure all y'all had the same kind of upbringing just like me. You know where your daddy was head of the CIA, and then ambassador to China, and then vice president for eight years and then president of the United States for four years. Yeah I'm just like you, I'm a good old boy from Midland, Texas!'
Eighty advertisers have reportedly dropped their ads from Glenn Beck's Fox News program since he called President Obama a "racist" who has a "deep-seated hatred for white people." Here are his February 3 sponsors, in the order they appeared:
Last month, Tucker Carlson's Daily Caller web site launched with a column by The Weekly Standard's Matt Labash in which Labash referred to MSNBC anchor Rachel Maddow as a man. Hilarious, right?
If you thought that was just a case of opening-day exuberance getting the best of the Daily Caller crew, think again. It seems they still haven't stopped giggling over at Tucker's little playhouse, which today again calls Maddow a man. At the end of a "DC Trawler" entry featuring a series of photos of MSNBC's female journalists, the Daily Caller includes a picture of Maddow and a caption suggesting the photo doesn't belong with the others and referring to her as "man" and "dude":
In a February 3 post, NewsBusters' David Lanza wrote that "Reuters should be made to explain why" it withdrew its February 1 article, "Backdoor taxes to hit middle class," claiming that the report was "fair enough." After Media Matters for America's Jocelyn Fong noted that Reuters had already stated that the story was removed because its claims were "wrong," and that the conservative American Enterprise Institute and Tax Foundation had come to the same conclusion, Lanza's post was removed from NewsBusters' site and replaced with:
From a February 3 New York interview with Fox Business Network host John Stossel:
What's hanging above your sofa?
Barney Frank in effigy.
Fox News has repeatedly allowed "Fox contributor" Andrea Tantaros to attack health care reform without disclosing that she is a "Vice President with Sloane and Company where she specializes in crisis communications, healthcare, and public affairs clients."
The firm does not specifically state who Tantaros works with, or what her work entails. Sloane & Company describes itself as "an industry-leading strategic communications firm specializing in corporate and financial public relations" and implements "programs that move beyond ideas into action and generate meaningful results for clients of all sizes." The firm lists Pfizer and Take Care Health Systems clinic as among its clients.
Sloane & Company touts Tantaros' Fox News connections in her corporate biography, stating that she "is a regular political analyst and media commentator on Fox News Channel, Fox Business Channel, CNN, CNBC, MSNBC and guest co-host on Fox News Radio."
As a Fox News contributor, Tantaros regularly discusses health care issues without any disclosure or mention of her self-described work with health care clients.
On the December 21, 2009, broadcast of Fox News' America's Newsroom, Tantaros attacked the Democrats' health care reform bill as "a stinker of a bill" and claimed that the White House has "a gun in the mouths of the U.S. Senate right now." Tantaros was identified as a Fox contributor and "media strategy advisor," but her health care ties were not mentioned.
Tantaros has similarly appeared on shows such as Fox News Watch, The O'Reilly Factor (August 27, 2009) and Fox & Friends (December 21) to discuss health care reform. Her work consulting with health care clients was not disclosed.
Tantaros also writes a column for FoxNews.com, where she regularly bashes health care reform. Tantaros is identified as a "conservative columnist and FoxNews.com contributor," or a former aide to Republicans.
You know the drill: Every now and then Drudge tries his hand at original reporting. Drudge somehow lands a too-good-to-be-true quote from magical insider source, and then the whole story is quickly proven to be bogus.
Here was today's attempt at 'reporting' [emphasis added]:
CBSNEWS anchorwoman and 60 MINUTES contributor Katie Couric faces a dramatic pay cut at the network, insiders tell the DRUDGE REPORT.
CBS boss Les Moonves is determined to save money and trim expenses -- from top to bottom -- at the former crown jewel of broadcasting.
Couric, the highest paid TV news personality in history, commands over $14 million a year, plus bumps for non-EVENING NEWS appearances.
But her salary is now in the direct line of fire, network insiders explain, and a populist backlash against Couric's cash is said to be forming inside the newsroom.
"She makes enough to pay 200 news reporters $75,000 a year!" demands a veteran producer. "It's complete insanity."
Except that, y'know, it's not true.
Sean McManus, president of CBS News and Sports, denied reports Wednesday that "CBS Evening News" anchor Katie Couric is facing a salary cut when her contract expires.