September 14, 2011

AP Touts President Obama’s Openness to Compromise, Ignores Campaign Obama’s Contradiction and New Tattletale Site

ObamaAttackWatch0911Darlene Superville’s Associated Press report earlier this evening on President Obama’s visit to North Carolina (“Obama touts jobs bill benefits for small business”) had an interesting final paragraph.

Concerning Obama’s openness to compromise on his “jobs plan” (otherwise known as “spend now, pay for with taxes later”), she wrote: “President Obama has made clear he’d sign a portion of the legislation if that’s all Congress could agree on, although he’s said he would continue to fight to pass the whole thing.”

Someone forgot to tell that to David Axelrod this morning, as Meghashyam Mali at the Hill reported (video is at link):

Axelrod: ‘We’re not in a negotiation’ on Obama $447B jobs package

Obama’s top political adviser David Axelrod said Tuesday that the administration was unwilling to break up the president’s $447 billion jobs plan if Republicans were only receptive to passing certain elements.

“We’re not in a negotiation to break up the package. It’s not an à la carte menu. It’s a strategy to get this country moving,” Axelrod said Tuesday on ABC’s “Good Morning America.”

“The president has a package; the package works together. We need to do many things to get this economy moving,” Axelrod said.

Oh wait, I get it.

Superville was reporting on President Obama, not Campaign Obama.

President Obama is open to compromise, while Campaign Obama, represented by campaign bigwig Axelrod, isn’t.

So Superville can totally ignore what Axelrod said because she was only covering President Obama. Campaign Obama is a totally different and separate thing.

She (and the rest of AP, as shown in the following searches, all not in quotes, at the wire service’s main site which failed to find anything relevant: here on “attackwatch.com”; here on “Attack Watch”; here on “Obama campaign”; and here on “Obama for America”) can also totally ignore the odious Attackwatch.com site, where Obama supporters are supposed to go to inform on their fellow citizens who are supposedly twisting the facts and lying about Obama’s record.

Rush’s thoughts today on attackwatch.com were succinctly sarcastic:

Now you’ve got the regime announcing yesterday this thing called Attack Watch. Obama has now…? The regime has a website? This is straight out of the… I saw a funny tweet. Some babe calls herself Virginia Gal has a tweet on this new Attack Watch website, the White House, “Are we gonna be able to read this in the original German?” …

…Now, this Attack Watch thing (sigh), they’re very proud of this. They’re very excited. They’ve got this new tattletale site. And imagine, if it only had gone online sooner, then Obama would have won back Weiner’s seat! Yeah. Nobody was available to stop all the false attacks on the regime, like the “lies” about 9.1% unemployment, Depression era unemployment for blacks and young people, Obama’s tax increases during a recession. All those lies that we’ve been telling! His attempt to lessen the charitable donations deduction.

The lies about Fast and Furious, the attempt to undermine the Second Amendment in this country, the lies about Solyndra, the record levels of poverty and food stamp distribution, the home mortgage crisis. All those lies that have been told about Obama, if only Attack Watch had been up, all of those lies could have been stopped.

At some point, someone ought to break it to Darlene Superville and the AP that Campaign Obama and President Obama are really the same person — and that if they contradict each other, or if either one engages in authoritarian behavior, it’s news.

Cross-posted at NewsBusters.org.

9/11 Remembered by a Member of the 9/11 Generation (Robert Roll Column)

Filed under: National Security — Rob Roll @ 2:29 pm

Robert Roll, a sophomore majoring in Finance at Ohio Northern University, wrote this column.

I will try to remember to keep this at the top for most of the rest of the day. — Tom

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Pentagon-2 WTC-2 ShanksvilleReplacementPic091101

This past Sunday the nation remembered the 10th anniversary of 9/11. While the entire country took the time to remember the events of that horrific day, I believe that this day has more significance to us, the members of the generation that have lived a majority of their lives in the post-9/11 world. It was our generation whose childhood innocence was shattered on that fateful day ten years ago.

I remember exactly where I was when I heard the news that America had been attacked. I was in the fourth grade and we were on our way back from gym class. When we got back to the classroom, our teacher was watching the live coverage of the first attack on the World Trade Center. As soon as we had sat down, she got up and was about to turn the TV off so that she could begin teaching again. That is when my whole world changed. The teacher was about halfway to the TV when the second plane crashed into the South Tower. Like so many others did that day, we watched the attack happen in real time. I cannot help but think about how, in such a short amount of time, I went from being an innocent fourth grader playing dodge ball in the gym of an elementary school, to watching an act of indescribable evil happen right in front of my eyes. I can imagine that many of you had similar experiences. The moment that we watched the second plane hit, our world was turned upside down. We went from thinking that the most evil person in the world was Plankton from Spongebob Squarepants, to realizing that there were people who would actually fly commercial jet liners into buildings, just to kill Americans. Our innocence was taken from us by the attacks of 9/11.

In remembering how I felt at the moment, I cannot help but think of how the first responders must have felt. There were probably even more frightened than I was; they were there, watching this event in person. But somehow, they were able to overcome the fear that would have paralyzed lesser men. They picked up their equipment and ran into the burning buildings. They ran into the fire. They did it for one simple reason: it was their job. Stories of heroism abound from that day. Firefighter Oreo Palmer arrived on the scene, shed is heavy equipment and sprinted up to the plane’s impact point on the South Tower. As he radioed down for others to follow him up, the South Tower collapsed upon him. Another hero of that day was a firefighter whose name is still unknown. As survivors of the North Tower would later relate, this firefighter carried the injured from the smoke-filled lobby of the North Tower to safety, turned around and disappeared into the smoke to save more lives. This unnamed hero kept carrying others to safety until the tower collapsed on top of him.

Any discussion of the heroism of that fateful day would be incomplete without discussing the bravery of the passengers on Flight 93. It was on this plane that America’s retaliation against evil began. The passengers of Flight 93 stormed the cockpit and fought the hijackers for control of the plane. This struggle ended when the airliner, destined to destroy either the Capitol building or the White House, crashed into a field just outside of Shanksville, Pennsylvania.

While the whole story of the bravery of Flight 93 would not be known for several days, the rest of the nation followed their example of unity and determination. That night, on the steps of the capitol, members of a divided congress held hands and sang “God Bless America” together. In the days that followed, every street in the United States was adorned with American Flags. Firehouses all over the country become impromptu shires to the victims of the attack. The evil men who attacked this country had hoped America would be too weak to recover from this sort of attack; they could not have been more wrong. The greatness of American lies in her people and their ability to come together in times of crisis.

My life changed that day, as did the lives of all Americans. As the 10th anniversary of 9/11 fades into the background, let us never cease to be inspired by the countless examples of heroism that day. Let us never forget that there is true evil in this world and, if given the chance, it will kill more innocent people. Finally, let us never forget the innocent lives that were ended at the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and in Shanksville, Pennsylvnia. May they rest in peace and may God continue to bless America.

Comedy Gold: In NY-09, AP’s Fouhy Casts Weprin as Presumptive Front-Runner, Calls Race for Turner 26 Minutes Later

Last night at 11:31 p.m., as shown here at the Columbus Dispatch, the Associated Press’s Beth Fouhy was treating the special congressional electoral contest in NY-09 as if Democrat David Weprin would likely fend off the challenge from Republican Bob Turner.

The 11:31 p.m. time stamp appears to be accurate, since only about a half-hour earlier, at 10:56 p.m., Fouhy put up a brief item at an AP-hosted site about how the ballot counting was proceeding slowly.

Twenty-six minutes later, at 11:57 p.m., as seen in this tweet, foolish Fouhy called the race for Turner.

Here are the first few comedic paragraphs from Fouhy’s 11:31 p.m. dispatch. Note how it is written from Weprin’s point of view as the presumptive front-runner, how Fouhy waits until the second paragraph to note the lastest results, and how in the third paragraph treats Turner’s (not mentioned until the 16th paragraph) six-point poll lead as “slight”:

Democrat David Weprin faced an unusually tight race against Republican Bob Turner in a special election Tuesday in New York’s heavily Democratic 9th Congressional District, where voters unhappy with President Barack Obama could elect a Republican for the first time.

The contest to replace disgraced Democratic Rep. Anthony Weiner, who resigned in a sexting scandal, had become too close to call, with public opinion polling showing a slight edge for Turner, a retired media executive with no previous political experience.

Polls closed at 9 p.m., and results trickled in slowly. With more than 30 percent of precincts reporting late Tuesday night, Turner held a slight lead over Weprin.

Towards the end of her report, there’s a Fouhy paragraph which almost seems to be written to keep her own spirits up in full realization that she would soon have to face the inevitable:

On Tuesday, Weprin said the polished Democratic machinery would get people to the polls.

Note how what Weprin “said” is not in quotes. I think “polished” is Beth Fouhy’s own word — a last-ditch attempt to say “I know those Democratic votes are out there. I just know it.”

Too bad, so sad, Beth.

Cross-posted at NewsBusters.org.

Quick Hits (091411, Morning)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 9:50 am

FightTheSmears.com II, now playing at AttackWatch.com — How unpresidential, and how typical.

Related: Hot Air (“Obama’s Snitch Central”); Michelle Malkin (“Obama launches another snitch police squad”)

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To the list of heartless radical conservatives who have declared Social Security a Ponzi scheme in the past we can add the one, the only … Paul Krugman (HT to an emailer).

Update: Also add Chris Matthews and Tim Russert to that list.

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Retail sales were flat in August vs. expectations ranging from +0.2% (Bloomberg) +0.3% (WSJ), while July was revised down from +0.5% to +0.3%. “Unexpectedly,” of course.

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From Freedom Works (related AP story) — “Yet another federal judge — this one in Pennsylvania — has ruled that the individual mandate in President Obama’s health care overhaul is unconstitutional.” Of course it is.

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QE3 =Operation Twist“:

Everyone is speculating that the Federal Reserve’s next move is “Operation Twist,” an effort to lower long-term interest rates by flattening the yield curve. The Fed would accomplish this by buying long-term Treasury securities and selling short-term bills.

I’m liking the name “Operation Twisted Misters” — as in Bernanke and Geithner.

We are in so much trouble.

NY-09 ≠ OH-02: After 88-Year Drought, Republican Breaks Through

Filed under: OH-02 US House,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 9:24 am

Those of us who remember the epic OH-02 special election battle featuring Democrat Paul Hackett vs. Republican Jean Schmidt in the summer of 2005 saw a lot of parallels in the NY-09 special election between Republican Bob Turner and Democrat David Weprin conducted yesterday — but not in the final result.

In each case, it was supposed to be a safe district for the incumbent party. OH-02 has been Republican since 1964. NY-09 had been held by Democratic demagogues like Chuck Schumer, Anthony Weiner, and others since 1923.

OH-02 was supposed to be a referendum on the popularity of George W. Bush and the Iraq War, even though Democrat Hackett pretended to be an Iraq War supporter in his ads on the home front while cursing the commander in chief in front of out-of-town supporters and reporters. NY-09 was a referendum primarily on the performance of Barack Obama, especially on the economy.

Note how I’m using the past tense in NY-09. That’s because, unlike in OH-02, where Republican Schmidt held on to win by a 3-point margin, Bob Turner last night broke the Democrat stranglehold on NY-09 and won, by a convincing margin (54-46 with 86% of the district counted). (Update: The New York Daily News’s headline: “Turner Trounces Weprin In NY-9 Showdown”)

Democrats declared that Hackett’s close OH-02 loss obtained under obviously false pretenses supposedly meant that the Iraq War was unpopular and that “no Republican seat is safe.” Today they claim that Turner’s historic win achieved without equivocation on where he stands and what he believes doesn’t mean much.

The heck it doesn’t. It’s a direct rebuke to the President and his party, and a huge win refuting the claim that a candidate’s Tea Party sympathies represent a liability.

If Democrats can’t win in NY-09, they may not be guaranteed of congressional wins anywhere. One would expect that they will have to dedicate significant resources to holding districts they would normally be able to leave alone.

Positivity: Bystanders lift car to save biker

Filed under: General — Tom @ 5:58 am

From Logan, Utah (“amazing video” at link):

September 13, 2011 7:45 AM

A fiery rescue in Utah was caught on tape Monday.

A car hit a motorcycle in Logan. The bike slid under the car, trapping the rider under the car as flames burst out.

Grad student Chris Garff, who shoots video of lectures and school events for Utah State University, happened to be there when it happened, and began getting the scene on video.

Half a dozen people tried the lift the blazing BMW.

“We were cheering them on, like ‘Get that car up! Get that guy outta there!” Garff says.

No luck.

Then, a flood of people swarmed the car and crane it managed to lift it into the air.

A construction worker dragged the limp body from under the 4,000 pounds of steel.

“It felt like he was motionless for a very, very long. It felt like forever,” Garff says. “I thought he was a goner.”

But then, as one witness described it, “He’s moving! No freakin’ way!”

The man, 21, was rushed to a hospital where, police say, he’s in stable condition with broken bones and minor burns. …

Go here for the full story and the video.

Discredited NYT Issa Story Used as Basis for Left Group’s Ethics Complaint

NYTlogoWithHeartObama0209It would appear that there is a reason beyond alleged “journalistic integrity” why the New York Times hasn’t pulled its error-riddled, only partially corrected mid-August story by Eric Lichtblau (“A Businessman in Congress Helps His District and Himself”) about California Republican Congressman Darrell Issa.

Issa has identified 13 serious errors in the Times story, the cumulative effect of which, in the words of Powerline’s John Hinderaker several weeks ago, show the story to be “nothing but lies and fabrications … (which) never should have been published.” The Times has corrected three. Though it appears to be dead wrong on the other ten, it hasn’t given any further quarter and won’t pull the story. Its Public Editor, as Clay Waters at NewsBusters noted, has found Issa’s request for a retraction “troubling.”

What’s really troubling is that it appears that the Times’s intransigence is from all appearances the result of a coordinated effort to neutralize Issa. That isn’t how an early Tuesday report at The Hill (“Rep. Issa hit with ethics allegations”) described it, but it’s impossible to escape the implications:

A liberal advocacy group is filing an ethics complaint against Rep. Darrell Issa, alleging that the California Republican has repeatedly used his public office for personal gain.

The group, American Family Voices, is planning to file the complaint with the House Office of Congressional Ethics (OCE) on Tuesday.

The five-page complaint, which was obtained by The Hill, accuses Issa of using his position as chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee to add to his multimillion-dollar fortune.

An Issa spokesman on Monday said the allegations have absolutely no merit and are part of a smear campaign spearheaded by the White House.

The complaint alleges that Issa pressured the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to halt an investigation of Goldman Sachs shortly after he bought a huge stake in one of Goldman’s high-yield mutual funds.

It also claims Issa used his authority to improperly defend Merrill Lynch, a firm with “which he has a significant financial interest,” the document states.

“In fact and in appearance, Rep. Issa has repeatedly — and impermissibly — used his public position to promote his private financial interests,” Mike Lux, president of American Family Voices, wrote in a letter to former Reps. Porter Goss (R-Fla.) and David Skaggs (D-Colo.), co-chairmen of the OCE.

A spokesman for Issa said the complaint is part of an effort orchestrated by the White House to discredit its critics.

“This complaint is entirely without merit. The White House has used an assortment of outside progressive groups in an effort to attack Oversight and Chairman Issa directly. This is just their latest salvo in an ongoing effort to obstruct oversight,” said Frederick Hill, Issa’s spokesman.

So American Family Voices (AFV; press release here) is using a story which should never have been published to file an ethics complaint which should never have been brought so that the congressman who is hot on the trail of the Gunwallker and other Obama administration can have his credibility and integrity dragged through the mud.

Again, in case it’s not clear, the Times’s refusal to pull its story seems to be based on the need to provide a basis for AFV’s complaint than on dogged defense of the truth.

And who is AFV? No surprise here:

American Family Voices serves as an umbrella group that helps fund a broad network of organizations – including civil rights, environmental, women’s rights, consumer advocacy and health care organizations, and multi-issue think tanks – and build their infrastructure, both in the field and in communications.

We also fill gaps in the progressive movement by conducting research and providing strategic messaging and public relations work that nobody is doing, which helps to drive new media stories.

AFV’s somewhat dated Projects page indicates that it is the driving force behind Health Care for America Now (HCAN) and “the Progressive Donor Network.” And though I wouldn’t want to mistake by confusing people with the same names, AFV’s board is from all appearances “progressively” connected.

Powerline’s Hinderaker described the situation perfectly in a Tuesday post:

This is how the Left operates: they pay for lies to be published, and then demand investigations on the basis of those lies.

… The word “corruption” is often tossed around in connection with politics, generally wrongly. In my opinion, this story illustrates the real corruption that infects our public life.

Indeed.

Cross-posted at NewsBusters.org.