Despite the clear scientific consensus that climate change is occurring and that humans are causing it, CNN's Erin Burnett treated climate change as the subject of debate.
Throughout the segment, Erin Burnett OutFront aired a badly misleading graphic suggesting that global warming is "on ice" because public opinion has changed. The phrase carried a question mark during most of the discussion, but eventually dropped it:
In contrast, here's a chart from the Met Office Hadley Centre for Climate Change showing the long-term change in global temperature:
Last year was also the hottest year on record in the U.S.
From the January 23 edition of CNN's Erin Burnett OutFront:
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Right-wing media have inconsistently responded to House Speaker John Boehner's (R-OH) failed attempt to pass his proposed "Plan B" to resolve the so-called "fiscal cliff" standoff, including praising conservative Republicans who opposed the measure, expressing regret that the measure didn't pass, questioning the viability of Boehner's speakership, and blaming President Obama for the plan's failure, despite Obama's concessions to the GOP.
A large group of conservative activists and media figures -- including CNN's Erick Erickson and WND.com founder Joseph Farah - have published an open letter to House and Senate Republicans threatening them not to compromise in any way with the "leftist agenda" of the Obama White House and congressional Democrats, as reported by Ari Melber of The Nation. Aside from raising the specter of primary challenges for apostates, the signatories insist that the election actually showed that America is clamoring for conservatism.
According to the letter: "In the House, the nation elected in 2012 one of the largest Republican majorities in the past 100 years. You have a mandate to fight for conservative principles that is arguably much broader than the one that narrowly reelected President Barack Obama claims to have for his leftist agenda."
"Arguably." Indeed, one could argue that the reelection of the House Republican majority supersedes both the reelection of the Democratic president and the expansion of the Democratic Senate majority. There are just a few things you have to disregard: logical sense, the hard reality of the tax situation, and the available polling that shows public confidence in Democrats and the White House regarding the so-called "fiscal cliff."
Conservative media outlets pushed at least eleven misleading attacks on President Obama's energy policies that have become talking points used by Mitt Romney's campaign. The conservative media bubble has largely prevented voters from hearing the facts about clean energy programs, fossil fuel production and environmental regulation under the Obama administration.
CNN contributor Erick Erickson criticized early voting, claiming that the practice could make Americans less likely to vote. But on October 18, Erickson boasted of voting early for Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney.
On CNN's Erin Burnett OutFront, host Erin Burnett kicked off the discussion on early voting by saying we should get rid of it and suggested moving Election Day from a Tuesday to another day when Americans could all vote on one day.
Erickson replied by noting that Tuesday as Election Day dates back to the country's founding but added that as a former election lawyer, "I've always had a concern with when you make it too general and too broad and too vote-anytime-you-want, then suddenly it becomes less of a civic national commitment."
Yet yesterday, Erickson exercised his civic duty by voting early for Romney:
Conservative media figures are taking a partial quote from President Obama out of context in order to attack him as reacting callously to the deaths of U.S. diplomatic personnel.
In an appearance taped today for The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, President Obama was asked if communication between government personnel had failed to provide "the optimal response" to the Benghazi attacks. Obama replied in part: "If four Americans get killed, it's not optimal. We're going to fix it. All of it. And what happens, during the course of a presidency, is that the government is a big operation and any given time something screws up. And you make sure that you find out what's broken and you fix it."
Conservative media figures like Matt Drudge, Monica Crowley, Hugh Hewitt, Mary Katherine Ham,John Podhoretz, Jonah Goldberg, Erick Erickson and outlets like Fox Nation all used early reports of Obama's comments to attack him, with several falsely suggesting that Obama had said the deaths of American personnel in Benghazi, and not the communications effort, was "not optimal."
Conservative media are mocking President Obama for countering Mitt Romney's misleading claim that gasoline prices have doubled during his tenure by accurately noting that prices were unusually low in January 2009 "because the economy was on the verge of collapse." But experts including a former American Petroleum Institute economist agree that the economic crisis drove gas prices to artificial lows.
After Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said that she's responsible for State Department personnel, right-wing media quickly claimed that President Obama was dodging responsibility for the attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya. But Clinton was actually pointing out that the State Department, not the White House, is responsible for diplomatic security while Obama has said that he is ultimately responsible for national security.
From the October 12 edition of CNN's Starting Point:
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Fox has seized on a conservative group's report to suggest President Obama's reelection campaign is receiving millions of dollars in illegal donations from foreign donors. In fact, the report provides no evidence to support this claim and the group's co-founder has himself acknowledged that it possesses no such evidence.
Usually Erick Erickson does you the courtesy of getting past the headline before lying, but now that we're less than a month from Election Day he's apparently decided to dispense with pleasantries.
"I Donated to Barack Obama," declares the headline to Erickson's latest blog post, wherein the CNN contributor documents his attempt to demonstrate that President Obama's campaign is committing some sort of fraud through an "illegal donor loophole" that allows them to accept contributions from overseas (a right-wing meme that's actually a bit of warmed-over nonsense from 2008). Not until the 13th paragraph do we learn that Erickson, after attempting to donate to Obama as a Russian with a made-up passport number, actually had his contribution rejected by the campaign.
So he didn't donate to Barack Obama. Nor did he document any evidence of fraud (in fact he demonstrated that the campaign's anti-fraud measures are working, as he would have known had he read the Obama campaign's statement after John Hinderaker tried this same exact stunt in April). But he had to write something, right? He went to all that effort. Just for us.
Media figures cheered Republican Mitt Romney's performance in the first presidential debate, claiming he offered specifics and an economic plan to contrast with that of President Obama. In fact, independent analysis shows Romney provided vague details at best.
Fox News' Charles Krauthammer didn't like Bill Clinton's convention speech. At all.
While so many commentators, including Republicans, praised the address as perhaps the best Clinton had ever given, the conservative columnist reassured Fox News viewers that not only had former president's "self-indulgent" speech failed to soar, it had actually flopped "beyond the hall."
According to Krauthammer, Clinton made his speech extra long just to annoy Obama; just to get back at him for defeating Hillary Clinton in the 2008 Democratic primary.
It was that kind of week in the right-wing media. As Democrats gathered in Charlotte to officially nominate Obama, the conservative press tapped into its bottomless reservoir of resentment and slowly came undone, while all the time insisting the Charlotte production was a big failure.
Packed with strange public pronouncements about "slave blood," imprisoning the president, vaginas, aborting people, as well as rancid race-baiting, the right-wing Week in Review captured the unhinged element that powers the conservative movement on the eve of the final election push. And oh yeah, Fox's Dick Morris said Bill Clinton actually wants Obama defeated but won't say so because his "wife is a hostage" and "they'll kill her" if Obama loses.
The reason the meltdown matters is because of the conservative media's outsized influence within the GOP. Since Obama's inauguration, the conservative movement has become, first and foremost, a media-based one. The Republican Party and its presidential campaign now take commands from the far-right press. And don't forget, in May, Romney met for two hours with conspiracy-minded GOP bloggers to map out how the group could help his campaign.
This week, those conservative guiding lights couldn't contain their visceral contempt for all things Democratic. And they didn't even try. Rather than provide analysis (even the sharp-elbowed variety), commentators routinely stooped to embarrassing lows in an effort to tout their hatred.
There was CNN contributor Erick Erickson's off the wall, anatomical convention comparison:
CNN's Dan Loesch, wondering whether Democratic activist Sandra Fluke had been "aborted" from the convention lineup (she was not):
During the first night of the Democratic National Convention, CNN contributor Erick Erickson tweeted, "First night of the Vagina Monologues in Charlotte going as expected":
Among his numerous past inflammatory statements, Erickson launched a series of sexist attacks on feminists during the 2010 Super Bowl.
That year, a TV ad featuring quarterback Tim Tebow had been rumored to contain an anti-abortion rights message. When the ad aired and was not as pointed as expected, Erickson tweeted, "That's what the feminazis were enraged over? ... That's what being too ugly to get a date does to your brain" and "Ugly feminists return to their kitchens." He continued his attacks the next day.