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By Scott Whitlock | | September 24, 2013 | 12:50 PM EDT

 MSNBC isn't even trying anymore. A new ad for Hardball actually touted Chris Matthews's past as a Democratic operative for Tip O'Neill. As black and white pictures of Matthews appeared onscreen, the host bragged, "I'm not new to politics, nor to the issues that divide us. Nor am I free of the passions they engage." (Considering that Matthews famously extolled the "thrill" Barack Obama sent up his leg, he's clearly not free of "passion.") [See video of the ad below. MP3 audio here.]

Hyping the profundity of his TV show, Matthews trumpeted, "Here on Hardball, you can expect me to discuss history as it relates to what's happening now. You can expect me to analyze what politicians are doing today with what I've seen other politicians do before." Perhaps it's a knowledge of history that caused the anchor last year to connect modern conservatives to genocidal murderer Adolf Hitler.

By Noel Sheppard | | September 24, 2013 | 11:26 AM EDT

The 1998 murder of Matthew Shepard is considered one of the nation's most notorious hate crimes.

Yet when a new book comes out by a gay author contending that Shepard was not killed because of his sexual orientation, America's media appear disinterested in reporting the new revelations.

By Randy Hall | | September 24, 2013 | 11:15 AM EDT

During Wayne LaPierre's appearance on the Sunday morning edition of NBC's Meet the Press, the executive vice president of the National Rifle Association told host David Gregory that the tragic shooting at the Navy Yards on Monday, September 16, actually reinforced his pro-gun stance. He stated: “When the good guys with guns got there, [the shooting] stopped.”

On Monday morning, Carol Costello -- anchor of the weekday CNN Newsroom program -- referred to the NRA representative's remarks by asserting: “We’ve seen this sad movie before, with Mr. LaPierre;” and grumbled: “At the end of the day, nothing will change.”

By Tim Graham | | September 24, 2013 | 11:06 AM EDT

The New York Times won this morning’s athletic effort to bury the story of Lois Lerner retiring over “gross mismangement” of the IRS tax-exempt organizations branch. At the very bottom of page A-14, in the second item under a “National Briefing” header, the Times ran a 77-word AP snippet, because who really cares when Tea Party groups are harassed by the Obama administration?

The 1379-word lead item in the National section explored “An Effort to Punish Posting of Nude Images After Breakups.” (First idea: don't send nude electronic images.) The caption under a large picture explained "Marianna Taschinger, 23, in Groves, Tex., is suing her ex-boyfriend and a Web site known for 'revenge porn' where nude photographs of her were posted." The other papers were competitive in burying this item:

By Geoffrey Dickens | | September 24, 2013 | 10:44 AM EDT

The censorship of the IRS scandal by ABC, CBS and NBC has reached a new low. Not even the news of Lois Lerner’s retirement, the official at the center of the IRS Tea Party targeting scandal, could break the Big Three networks’ months-long streak of no scandal coverage.

The Drudge Report splashed the news on the top of its site on Monday but not a single network bothered to report the stunning news that night or Tuesday morning that Lerner, as the Washington Times reported, “retired from the agency Monday morning after an internal investigation found she was guilty of ‘neglect of duties’ and was going to call for her ouster, according to congressional staff.”

By NB Staff | | September 24, 2013 | 10:23 AM EDT

Discuss the news of the day or anything else you'd like...

By Tom Blumer | | September 24, 2013 | 10:06 AM EDT

On Friday, Allan Brauer, the Sacramento County Democratic Party's communications director directed the following tweet (HT Twitchy) at Amanda Carpenter, a speechwriter for Texas Senator Ted Cruz: "May your children all die from debilitating, painful and incurable diseases."

Brauer's action got the attention of Leslie Larson at the New York Daily News and myriad national web sites across the ideological spectrum, including Mediaite, PJ Media, and The Blaze. But at the Associated Press, it's a California-only story worthy of only five paragraphs (reproduced in full for future reference, fair use and discussion purposes):

By Mark Finkelstein | | September 24, 2013 | 8:26 AM EDT

Drag a $100 bill through MSNBC and there's no telling what you'll find.  On today's Morning Joe, the ever-classy James Carville likened GOP primary voters to low-quality prison inmates.

Carville made his asinine analogy in responding to Joe Scarborough's suggestion that Republicans can still prevail in coming election cycles if they do the "smart thing." Carville said the situation reminded him of what Lester Maddox said the problem was in the Georgia prison system: the quality of the inmates.  According to Carville, the GOP's problem is the quality of Republican primary voters.  View the video after the jump.

By Tim Graham | | September 24, 2013 | 7:09 AM EDT

An ABC star is trashing CBS for its Emmy-show telecast being too white. “Grey’s Anatomy” star Ellen Pompeo (who plays Dr. Meredith Grey)  told the Associated Press she was “really disappointed” by host Neil Patrick Harris being surrounded by white dancers.

"I didn't see any diversity in the Emmys at all. The Emmys felt so dated to me," she said in an interview Monday. "... That dance number was embarrassing. Did you see one person of color in that dance number?"

By Evan Mantel | | September 24, 2013 | 12:00 AM EDT

The premiere of The Blacklist teases and impresses.

By Tim Graham | | September 23, 2013 | 11:12 PM EDT

In Time’s “Ten Questions” interview in the September 23 edition, Time editor-at-large Belinda Luscombe asked Hugh Jackman about his new movie “Prisoners,” in which “Your character tortures a guy to try to find his kidnapped daughter.” Luscombe asked if this instinct kicks when his children are faced with the paparazzi.

Then Belinda – like Jackman, a native of Australia – went geopolitical and suggested this freaked-out-daddy torturer character is an appropriate metaphor for the United States: 

By Amy Ridenour | | September 23, 2013 | 11:10 PM EDT

If you listen to the left, you're probably hearing about food stamp "cuts."

What you're probably not hearing is, as Ira Stoll reported in the New York Sun, that the Democrats wanted to increase food stamp spending by 65% over the next ten years but Republicans passed a bill to raise it by only 57%, so partisan spinners and liberals in the media are calling what the GOP passed "a cut."

By Matthew Balan | | September 23, 2013 | 6:45 PM EDT

On Monday's Morning Edition, NPR's Scott Horsley boosted President Obama's push for new gun control measures at the Sunday memorial service for the victims of the mass shooting at the Washington Navy Yard. Horsley played four soundbites of Obama bemoaning the apparent lack of action on this issue, while including just one clip from the NRA's Wayne LaPierre.

The correspondent also asserted that two pro-gun control state legislators in Colorado were "recalled by voters after a campaign fueled by the National Rifle Association." In reality, gun control supporters spent seven times more money in the recall than gun rights supporters, as reported by CBS This Morning earlier in September.

By Scott Whitlock | | September 23, 2013 | 6:27 PM EDT

Several media outlets have eagerly picked up the political gossip coming out of a New York magazine story on Hillary Clinton and her possible 2016 run. The article itself is a fawning profile of the former of Secretary of State and her husband. According to writer Joe Hagan, Bill and Hillary are "the most celebrated political marriage in American history." (Apparently, couples like John and Abigail Adams don't qualify.)

Although it wasn't until paragraph 40 of the nearly 6000 word article that Hagan seriously discussed the terrorist attack in Benghazi, he heaped cotton candy-style praise on the 42nd president: "Bill Clinton is also a legendary politician, a brilliant tactician who won two presidential elections and reigned over the most prosperous years in America in recent memory." The journalist seriously suggested that "some" think " he single-handedly won Obama reelection with his extraordinary takedown of Mitt Romney at the Democratic National Convention last year."

By Ken Shepherd | | September 23, 2013 | 6:12 PM EDT

"I’m going to torch this [bleep]ing place." That's what an angry Ed Schultz reportedly threatened at a testy August 2010 exchange with the suits at MSNBC. Schultz was reportedly fired up because, "the network was running election-night promos and he wasn’t in them. He’d been arguing on the phone with marketing, then he slammed down the phone and exploded," a witness to the outburst told the New York Post.

So imagine our glee this afternoon when ol' Ed opened up his September 23 program with a montage featuring, wait for it, "Burning Down the House," by The Talking Heads.