July 15, 2015

Hiding the Decline, Again: AP’s Rugaber Fails to Note Falling Shipments as Explanation For Flat Manufacturing Output

The serious sales slumps combined with inventory buildups in manufacturing and wholesale industries, documented in previous NewsBusters posts here, here, here, and here — that’s just in the past ten days — continues. So does the establishment press’s determination to ignore them.

At the Associated Press today, Christopher Rugaber was tasked to cover the Federal Reserve’s June release on Industrial Production. The good news is that the Fed report showed an overall increase (+0.3 percent) for the first time in three months. The bad news is that none of it came in manufacturing, which was flat as a pancake for the second straight month. The net sum of the monthly manufacturing declines so far this year is -0.3 percent. While Rugaber concentrated his attention where it belonged, i.e., on manufacturing, since it makes up 75 percent of all industrial activity, he still managed to come up with all kinds of explanations for the lack of progress — except the two most obvious (bold is mine):

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Well, They Are …

John Hinderagker at Powerline:

I won’t say much about Major Garrett’s question about the Americans held prisoner in Iran, to which Obama responded petulantly. But if Barack Obama and John Kerry seriously doubt that they could have said, “Oh–if you want that $100+ billion, one more thing you have to do–let these four people go” – if they doubt that the mullahs would have agreed in a heartbeat, they are the worst negotiators in the history of the world.

Well, they are. The only alternative is that they were determined to give away the store on purpose.

CNN and Leftist Hacks Attack Major Garrett For His Tough Questions of Obama

Journalists and lefitsts (but I repeat myself) are hopping mad.

They’re not mad at President Obama for failing to make freeing American hostages held by Iran an issue in negotiations with that nation. Instead, they’re furious at Major Garrett of CBS News for daring to ask Dear Leader a question about it, even though in the process Garrett got a clearly irritated Obama to make news by admitting, and then trying to justify, his team’s failure to make such an effort.

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On Guns, John Kasich is on Common Ground With … Bernie Sanders

Filed under: 2nd Amendment,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 2:36 pm

When they were in Congress, Vermont’s Bernie Sanders and Ohio’s John Kasich voted “yea” on HR 4296 – “Regulation of Semi-Automatic Assault Weapons.”

It was “a bill that bans certain semiautomatic assault weapons.”

The bill passed by a margin of 216-214.

If either man had changed his vote to a “nay,” the bill would not have passed.

Just sayin’.

Fortunately, the bill had a built-in ten-year expiration, and was not renewed in 2004.

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UPDATE: Yes, I know the term “assault weapons” is a myth and a made-up term. You’ll note that it’s in quotes above both times.

In Interview With Iran’s Zarif, MSNBC’s Mitchell Rolls Her Eyes As She Discusses Netanyahu

In an extraordinarily and inappropriately indulgent interview with Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif yesterday, MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell rolled her eyes as she mentioned Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s position that the “deal” between Iran and an alliance led by the U.S. is a “mistake of historic proportions.”

Immediately after doing so, she refocused her attention on Zarif, smiled and batted her eyelashes as she finished her question. The video which immediately follows the jump was posted at Digitas Daily (HT PJ Tatler via Ed Driscoll at Instapundit):

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Wednesday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (071515)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 6:05 am

This open thread is meant for commenters to post on items either briefly noted below (if any) or otherwise not covered at this blog. Rules are here.

Positivity: Spanish court recognizes pharmacists’ conscience rights

Filed under: Life-Based News,Positivity,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 6:00 am

From Madrid, Spain:

Jul 8, 2015 / 03:44 pm

Spain’s Constitional Court has issued a ruling protecting the conscience rights of pharmacists who decline to sell the morning after pill on the basis of religious belief or other conscientious objection.

The court’s finding was based on freedoms of religion and conscience found in article 16 of the Spanish constition.

The decision concerned the case of a pharmacist in Seville who was sanctioned with a 3,000 euro ($3,300) fine by the city council of Andalusia because he decided to not sell the potentially abortion-inducing morning after pill, though local laws obliged him to do so.

In the court’s judgement, the imposed sanction infringed on his right to conscientious objection.

Nevertheless, the judges rejected the pharmacist’s decision to not sell condoms, since in their opinion in this case, there is “no conflict of conscience relevant to the constitution.”

José Antonio Díez, general coordinator for the Association for the Defense of the Rights of Conscience, described the decision as “historic and pioneering not only in Spain, but in all of Europe.” …

Go here for the rest of the story.