• UPDATED: Maybe this explains the right-wing attack on ABC News

    Blog ››› ››› ERIC BOEHLERT

    We noted this morning that the right-wing's rather unhinged response to an ABC News special that hasn't even aired or been taped yet might be driven by the fact conservatives in the press don't want to see any kind of thoughtful debate on the issue of health care because, according to recent polls, it's such a big loser for the GOP.

    That reading of the manufactured ABC News controversy is further supported by this:

    (h/t Greg Sargent)

  • WND's Porter: If we don't stop Obama "dictatorship ... we'll lose our lives"

    Blog ››› ››› MEDIA MATTERS STAFF

    In her June 16 column, radio host Janet Porter writes that the Obama "dictatorship must be stopped. And it must be stopped now. If we don't, we'll lose more than our strongest ally in the Middle East and the free market - we'll lose our lives." From her column:

    In the same way he doesn't want to interfere with the so-called "elections" in Iran, he doesn't want to interfere with Tehran's efforts to obtain nuclear power. He'll give them until the end of the year to gain all the nuclear power they need to obtain their fundamental goal of wiping Israel off the map. But, rest assured, after that, he'll engage in some serious dialogue.

    No, Obama doesn't want to dictate to other nations what they should do. Unless that nation is Israel. When it comes to Israel, he wants full dictatorship. I wouldn't be surprised if he were to appoint another unaccountable czar to rule over them.


    In the same "Apology tour" highlighting America's arrogance for "dictating" policy, Obama also used his political power to try and force the European Union to admit Muslim Turkey into their midst. Thankfully, France and Germany wisely opposed his dictates.

    And while we're on the subject of the arrogance of such "dictates," Obama, who said he wasn't interested in taking over the Auto industry, has done just - closing dealerships based not on their success, but on their politics. Those who opposed his candidacy are out of business, and those who gave him the most money remain open, even if their dealerships weren't successful. Auto czars and pay czars that answer to no one but the dictator in chief are making policy as we speak. They have taken over the banks, and now they want to run your health care.

    This dictatorship must be stopped. And it must be stopped now. If we don't, we'll lose more than our strongest ally in the Middle East and the free market - we'll lose our lives.


    Conservatives link Obama's purported "class warfare," positioning "America against the Jewish state" to Holocaust Museum shooting

    Hat-tip: Right Wing Watch

  • FLASHBACK: When Fox News boasted about its "unprecedented" access to the Bush White House

    Blog ››› ››› MEDIA MATTERS STAFF

    Suddenly ABC News has become "state controlled" media because it's working closely with the Obama White House on a primetime program. At least that's how Michelle Malkin and her friends explain the world to their outraged readers.

    So if ABC News is now government controlled, what did that make Fox News in 2008? [Emphasis added]

    FOX News' Bret Baier was granted unprecedented access by George W. Bush as the president begins the final year of his extraordinarily consequential tenure.

    This historic documentary - shot in high definition - takes you inside the Oval Office, to the president's Texas ranch, aboard Air Force One and into his private sanctums in the White House residence.

    You get the idea.

  • WATCH: Conservative Media Paranoia Over Health Care Reform


    A while back I wrote about healthcare reform noting:

    No issue incurs the wrath of these modern-day Red hunters more than health-care reform. For more than 75 years, conservatives have smeared progressive attempts to reform our faltering health-care system as "socialized medicine."


    Since the 1930s, conservatives have assailed at least 16 different progressive health-care reform initiatives as "socialized medicine" or as a step that would inevitably lead in that direction.

    What exactly has constituted "socialized medicine" to conservatives over the past seven-plus decades?

    How about Franklin Roosevelt's consideration of government health insurance when crafting the 1935 bill that created Social Security, or Lyndon Johnson's 1965 amendment to the Social Security Act establishing Medicare? Both raised the ire of conservatives, who were quick to run with the "socialized medicine" smear.

    In fact, back in 1964, Ronald Reagan, then stumping for GOP presidential candidate Barry Goldwater, said of Medicare, "Will you resist the temptation to get a government handout for your community? Realize that the doctor's fight against socialized medicine is your fight. We can't socialize the doctors without socializing the patients."

    Like Roosevelt and Johnson decades before him, Bill Clinton's health-care initiative in 1993 and 1994 and his work to create the State Children's Health Insurance Program in 1997 were attacked time and again as "socialized medicine."

    Pick a progressive president. Roosevelt, Truman, Kennedy, Johnson, Clinton, and now Obama -- they've all faced the stale "socialized medicine" routine from the right.

    So, what's the climate been like for President Obama?


  • I'm pretty sure this is why Juan Williams isn't allowed to associate himself with NPR when he appears on The O'Reilly Factor

    Blog ››› ››› ERIC BOEHLERT

    If folks didn't see this clip from Monday night, it's a beaut. Not only does the reliable O'Reilly backstop Juan Williams eagerly assure the host that he was right to attack Salon editor Joan Walsh for having "blood on her hands" for defending murdered abortion provider Dr. George Tiller (don't ask), but Williams also managed to liken anti-abortion crusaders with civil rights protesters from the 1950's. (Because how many civil rights marchers were ever charged with murdering their political opponents Juan?)

    In fact, this is precisely why NPR bosses informed Williams in February that he was not allowed to be identified as an NPR contributor when making his O'Reilly appearances. They did it because Williams was embarrassing NPR, plain and simple.

    BTW, don't you love how Williams politely described O'Reilly's anti-Tiller rhetoric as "dramatic." I suppose that's one (purposefully misleading) way of putting it.

    "Deranged" might be another:

    • "In the state of Kansas, there is a doctor, George Tiller, who will execute babies for $5,000."
    • "For $5,000, 'Tiller the Baby Killer' -- as some call him -- will perform a late-term abortion for just about any reason."
    • "Tiller has killed thousands, thousands of late-term fetuses without explanation."
    • "No question, Dr. Tiller has blood on his hands."
    • " 'Tiller the Baby Killer' out in Kansas, acquitted, acquitted today of murdering babies."
    • "This guy will kill your baby for $5,000, any reason. Any reason."
    • "If we allow Dr. George Tiller and his acolytes to continue, we can no longer pass judgment on any behavior by anybody."
    • "If we allow this, America will no longer be a noble nation."
  • The Red Scare Index: 38

    Blog ››› ››› KARL FRISCH

    Here is today's daily Red Scare Index -- our search of CNN, CNN Headline News, Fox News Channel, Fox Business Network, MSNBC and CNBC for uses of the following terms: Socialism, Socialist, Socialists, Socialistic, Communism, Communist, Communists, Communistic, Marxism, Marxist, Marxists, Marxistic, Fascism, Fascist, Fascists and Fascistic.

    Here are the numbers for yesterday, Tuesday, June 16, 2009:

    TOTAL: 38
    Socialism, Socialist, Socialistic: 18
    Communism, Communist, Communistic: 18
    Marxism/Marxist: 0
    Fascism, Fascist/s, Fascistic: 2

    By Network:

    CNN: 11
    Socialism, Socialist/s, Socialistic: 6
    Communism, Communist/s, Communistic: 5
    Marxism, Marxist/s: 0
    Fascism, Fascist/s, Fascistic: 0

    CNN Headline News: 0
    Socialism, Socialist/s, Socialistic: 0
    Communism, Communist/s, Communistic: 0
    Marxism, Marxist/s: 0
    Fascism, Fascist/s, Fascistic: 0

    Fox News Channel: 2
    Socialism, Socialist/s, Socialistic: 1
    Communism, Communist/s, Communistic: 1
    Marxism, Marxist/s: 0
    Fascism, Fascist/s, Fascistic: 0

    Fox Business Network: 9
    Socialism, Socialist/s, Socialistic: 2
    Communism, Communist/s, Communistic: 7
    Marxism, Marxist/s: 0
    Fascism, Fascist/s, Fascistic: 0

    MSNBC: 13
    Socialism, Socialist/s, Socialistic: 9
    Communism, Communist/s, Communistic: 2
    Marxism, Marxist/s: 0
    Fascism, Fascist/s, Fascistic: 2

    CNBC: 3
    Socialism, Socialist/s, Socialistic: 0
    Communism, Communist/s, Communistic: 3
    Marxism, Marxist/s: 0
    Fascism, Fascist/s, Fascistic: 0

    The above numbers are the result of a power search for these terms on these networks.

  • Maybe this explains the right-wing attack on ABC News

    Blog ››› ››› ERIC BOEHLERT


    The GOP Noise Machine continues to launch its pre-emptive attack on ABC News for having the audacity to turn over a chunk of its primetime to address the pressing national issue of health care reform. (The nerve!) Maybe what conservatives really fear is the fact that an overwhelming majority of Americans favor health care reform. Maybe the Noise Machine wants to shut down any debate because it realizes it's on the losing side.

  • Pat Buchanan doesn't think TV personalities should be accountable for their rhetoric

    Blog ››› ››› JAMISON FOSER

    Here's Pat Buchanan on MSNBC, moments ago:

    If David Letterman had said that about Sasha Obama and Alex Rodriguez, he'd be out of a job now, and he'd be begging to get his job back. But Sarah Palin and her daughters are fair game. And it really does show there is a terrible double-standard here. But I will say this: Letterman has apologized, and she has accepted it. I hope we don't go on with it. I think we ought to go forward, because Letterman is less of a problem, frankly, than the people out there who are the censors, trying to get people on the left or on the right thrown off of TV shows because of what they say.

    Shocking that Pat Buchanan doesn't want anyone to consider his rhetoric in deciding whether to keep paying him to talk on TV, isn't it?

    But what criteria do Buchanan think people should use in assessing whether someone should be on television, if not "what they say"? Or does he think TV Pundit should be a lifetime appointment, like the Supreme Court?

  • Yawn, Drudge Report claim proves to be bogus

    Blog ››› ››› ERIC BOEHLERT

    Admit it, you'd be shocked if anything were the case, right?

    From Drudge's comical, hyperventilating claim about ABC's planned prime-time health care special [emphasis added]:

    ABCNEWS anchor Charlie Gibson will deliver WORLD NEWS from the Blue Room of the White House.

    The network plans a primetime special -- 'Prescription for America' -- originating from the East Room, exclude opposing voices on the debate.

    From Kerry Smith, senior vice president, ABC News:

    ABC News announced plans to broadcast a primetime hour from the White House devoted to exploring and probing the President's position and giving voice to questions and criticisms of that position.

    This is the latest example of a unique brand of media criticism that conservatives have perfected -- the pre-emptive critique. Drudge and company have no idea what the substance of ABC's special will look or sound like, but they've already decided it's a crime against journalism.

    As if they could even recognize the craft.

    UPDATE: The right-wing reaction to Drudge's falsehood remains priceless. Suddenly, ABC News is "state controlled."

    You can't make this stuff up.

  • Michael Goldfarb, Hypocrite

    Blog ››› ››› JAMISON FOSER

    Oh, this is great. Michael Goldfarb is outraged:

    David Shuster Is A Liar

    MSNBC's journalistic standards are, shall we say, somewhat flexible. Even by its weak standards, however, David Shuster today issued a report that was breathtaking for its mendacity. Simply put, Shuster lied--brazenly, knowingly, on the air. ...

    Shuster made these things up, apparently out of whole cloth. ...

    We don't expect the likes of David Shuster to let little things like facts to get in the way of his opinions. But we do expect that the producers and executives at MSNBC might care a bit more about the consequences of spreading easily verifiable falsehoods on the air.

    I'll let Shuster defend himself, if he cares what Goldfarb says. But I wonder how Goldfarb squares all of that outrage with his sleazy and dishonest lies that Sonia Sotomayor was allowed to teach her own class and grade herself?

    To borrow Shuster's shtick: Michael Goldfarb, when you spread easily-debunked lies about someone and refuse to correct them when caught, then call someone else a "liar" and question their "journalistic standards" ... that's hypocrisy!