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By Tom Blumer | | May 18, 2013 | 10:19 PM EDT

Clearly, the New York Times couldn't run with Jonathan Weisman's headline or opening sentence in the report he filed shortly after Friday's portion of Friday's testimony at a hearing of the House Ways and Means Committee in its Saturday print edition. And it didn't.

The original headline at Weisman's story, as seen here (HT Ann Althouse via Instapundit), was "Treasury Knew of I.R.S. Inquiry in 2012, Official Says." His opening sentence: "The Treasury Department’s inspector general told senior Treasury officials in June 2012 he was auditing the Internal Revenue Service’s screening of politically active organizations seeking tax exemptions, disclosing for the first time on Friday that Obama administration officials were aware of the matter during the presidential campaign year." Along came Jeremy Peters, who helped to "properly" frame these matters, turning it into yet another "Republicans attack our poor innocent administration" piece. That is what made it to today's paper -- on Page A12, naturally accompanied by a "better" headline. Meanwhile, except for excerpts captured at places like the indispensable FreeRepublic, Weisman's original has been flushed down the memory hole.

By Randy Hall | | May 18, 2013 | 8:12 PM EDT

Here's a classic from the Obama playbook: Whenever you're in trouble, find a way to blame George W. Bush for it.

That concept was in play on Thursday afternoon's edition of MSNBC's Martin Bashir program, when the liberal host and contributor Joy Reid were able to convince their guest, GOP strategist Ron Christie, to admit that Steven Miller, the former acting director of the Internal Revenue Service, was appointed by “the previous administration,” a phrase used to describe Bush.

By Noel Sheppard | | May 18, 2013 | 5:46 PM EDT

"President Obama’s world view is rooted in American exceptionalism."

So astonishingly said Fareed Zakaria during the opening segment of his Fareed Zakaria GPS program to be aired on CNN Sunday (video follows with commentary):

By Noel Sheppard | | May 18, 2013 | 1:43 PM EDT

Jay Leno on Friday continued his humorous attacks on the White House.

The NBC Tonight Show host finished a string of opening monologue jokes aimed at President Obama saying, “Let me tell you how bad it's gotten: Fox News has changed its slogan from ‘Fair and Balanced’ to ‘See, I Told You So!’" (video follows with transcript and commentary):

By Noel Sheppard | | May 18, 2013 | 12:59 PM EDT

Bill Maher on Friday once again exposed himself as a total hypocrite.

Minutes after telling his HBO Real Time panel "the Second Amendment is bulls--t," he admitted having two firearms in his house - "one upstairs and one down" - claiming, "As long as we live in the gun country, I ain’t giving up my gun" (video follows with transcript and commentary):

By Noel Sheppard | | May 18, 2013 | 11:53 AM EDT

Former Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney was Jay Leno’s guest on the Tonight Show Friday, and he didn’t have kind things to say about the current White House resident or former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

At one point in their discussion, Romney said, "I'm not a fan of the president - in case you didn't know that."

By Tom Blumer | | May 18, 2013 | 10:39 AM EDT

In a story appearing this morning at the Politico about the Department of Justice's broad and unannounced subpoenas of the April and May 2012 personal and business phone records of reporters and editors at the Associated Press involving 20 phone lines and involving over 100 reporters and editors, James Hohmann found several "veteran prosecutors" who aren't necessarily outraged by what most members of the press and several watchdog groups have declared a blatant overreach. Instead, Hohmann summarizes their "far more measured response" as: "It’s complicated."

Hohmann utterly ignored a May 15 Washington Post story which chronicled claimed discussions between AP and government officials. Ultimately, it appears that the Obama administration's Department of Justice under Eric Holder may have only gone after AP out of spite because the wire service refused to accommodate administration requests to allow it time to crow about foiling a terrorist plot before the story gained meaningful visibility, and not because the release of the story, especially after what appears to have been an appropriate and negotiated delay, represented a genuine security risk. One obvious unanswered question is why DOJ waited, according to the AP's Mark Sherman in his original story, until "earlier this year" to obtain the phone records if it was so darned important to find out who the alleged leaker was.

By Ken Shepherd | | May 18, 2013 | 10:05 AM EDT

The liberal media are not really "up in arms" with the Obama administration, but are simply having a "lover's quarrel" over the AP scandal in particular, NewsBusters publisher Brent Bozell told CNBC host Larry Kudlow on his May 16 The Kudlow Report program.

What's more, it won't be that long until "[t]he Bill Clinton syndrome is going to be upon us, where it's time to move on, we've covered it [the media will say] and they're going to turn the fire right on Republicans as being obstructionists. Mark my word," the Media Research Center founder predicted. [watch the full segment below the page break]

By Liz Thatcher | | May 18, 2013 | 9:30 AM EDT

Nothing says justice like a violent massacre of Wall Street bankers! At least, that’s what Stuart Heritage, of the UK’s left-wing newspaper “The Guardian” thinks. In his May 14 article titled “Assault on Wall Street trailer: bankers get what’s coming, Uwe Boll style” Heritage justified the rampage before the reader even started on his article.

“The global financial crisis has been responsible for many things, but the redemption of Uwe Boll hasn’t been one of them,” he started his article. This redemption he writes of? A psychopathic Jim Baxford (Dominic Purcell) targeting and brutally executing the top Wall Street bankers in New York.

By Brent Bozell | | May 18, 2013 | 8:25 AM EDT

The annual network list of cancelled prime-time shows cannot be pleasing to the progressives who measure shows based on their cultural and political usefulness. “TV Will Be a Lot Less Gay Next Year,” the commissars complained at They counted 11 cancelled shows that featured regular gay characters.

That bothersome thing called the market: why must it get in the way!

By Mark Finkelstein | | May 18, 2013 | 8:15 AM EDT

UPDATE: Not one second about the IRS scandal in the entire show.   GMA just went off the air and managed to avoid mentioning the dreaded I-word.  The second half-hour featured two more Powerball segments, and features on Beyoncé's possible pregnancy, Bieber's monkey, and a kangaroo.  IRS scandal?  What IRS scandal?  ABC couldn't find a second for it.


Bianna Golodryga opened today's Good Morning America by announcing that it was "a very busy Saturday morning."  So busy, in fact, that GMA couldn't spare one second in its first half-hour for the IRS scandal. That despite yesterday's stonewalling testimony by the outgoing IRS Commissioner in which he had the colossal chutzpah to deny there had been any political motive in the targeting of conservative organizations.

So what kept GMA so busy? By far the longest segment was devoted to . . . the Powerball lottery.  Just in the first half-hour, GMA spent 325 seconds—over five minutes—on the lottery and its big prize.  One report from stores where lottery tickets are being sold didn't suffice. There were two.  Those were followed by an interview with a lottery official.  GMA even managed to squeeze in a report of a bear that had climbed into a tree.  But the IRS?  Sorry: too busy.  More after the jump.

By Tim Graham | | May 18, 2013 | 7:01 AM EDT

By Friday, as the Obama promoters within the network news divisions started spreading the president's word that three growing scandals are just a blip, they might point to Gallup's daily job-approval ratings for Obama, which remained at 49 percent approve, 45 percent disapprove.

This result might also reflect that Gallup found that a slim majority of Americans are either "very" or "somewhat" following news of the IRS and Benghazi scandals, "comparatively low based on historical measures of other news stories over the last two decades."  Low-information voters could still obsess about Angelina Jolie's surgeries or whether Beyonce is pregnant again:

By Tom Johnson | | May 17, 2013 | 10:52 PM EDT

Many liberals have objected to the IRS's targeting of conservative groups, but others see nothing wrong with it, including one Kossack who asserted this week that the revenuers in Cincinnati were simply "doing their job."
As usual, each headline is preceded by the blogger's name or pseudonym.

By Noel Sheppard | | May 17, 2013 | 7:01 PM EDT

Syndicated columnist Charles Krauthammer had some harsh criticism for acting IRS commissioner Steven Miller’s testimony before the House Ways and Means Committee Friday.

Appearing on Fox News’s Special Report, Krauthammer said, “You've got to be a knave or a fool to say that and you have to be an idiot to believe it.”

By Matt Hadro | | May 17, 2013 | 6:22 PM EDT

After Friday's IRS testimony before Congress, CNN's Ashleigh Banfield begged CNN host Candy Crowley to "take me off the ledge" and explain that the agency was simply doing its job looking for "sleazeballs that are trying to get special status."

Crowley shot down Banfield's astoundingly ignorant plea. "And the only sleazeballs have 'Tea Party' in their name or 'patriot'? What about 'progressive'?" Crowley asked of the agency's double standard in investigating Tea Party groups while approving liberal groups more quickly. [Video below the break. Audio here.]