Hailed for his engagement with the online world and being cutting edge for hosting a Twitter town hall, President Barack Obama made quite the gaffe at his town hall yesterday, calling the internet, "internets," the same mistake for which former President George W. Bush was widely mocked following a 2004 presidential debate.
The flub, which Obama quickly corrected, came while he was discussing the importance of bringing the internet to classrooms, but the president has received little media flack for his slip-up.
Having friends in Washington is one of the quickest and dirtiest paths to success, but when President Barack Obama is the one helping you out by discriminately favoring your company's products over others, very few in the media seem to care.
Flashback to the early 2000s during former President George Bush's first term. The mainstream media pounced on former Vice President Dick Cheney's association with Halliburton, an oil company for which Cheney once served as CEO. The Bush administration supposedly favored Halliburton by rewarding the company with a number of multi-million dollar oil contracts in the Middle East, purportedly only using a bidding process to make the game look fairer.
Today it's a different fuel and a different president, but Obama has an almost identical story: favoring the clean-technology companies of his financial supporters through rewards of federal money. This time around, though, the media is giving his shady dealings a free pass.
A news article written by a reporter at AFP and reproduced at such news sites as Google, Yahoo, NPR, the Dallas Morning News, and others, might qualify as an example of what happens when one allows opinion to seep into reporting. Despite a mission statement involving claims that AFP coverage is balanced, accurate, and includes the other side of the story, this piece makes no secret of where the reporter’s bias lies.
The article features such gems as:
- A strong yet hyperbolic opening statement – “President Barack Obama, once a fresh faced prophet of hope…”
- A picture of the presidential seal with the caption ‘The presidential seal of Barack Obama’
- Comedy – “Obama will … brandish a record as a genuine reformer…”
- Labeling of the President’s opposition – “…a Republican Party dragged right of the crucial political center ground by the ultra-conservative Tea Party movement” – with no labeling of his own liberal policies or base.
Most interesting was the inclusion of this possible 2012 campaign slogan: “Though many of America's problems predated his presidency…”
Here is a short list of American problems since Obama took office:
A man is arrested and detained for months without any charges being brought against him. He is being held in deplorable conditions, forced to endure extreme physical and mental distress. He is exposed to the same ‘torture’ tactics that other enemies of the United States have allegedly suffered through.
So why isn’t the Commander-in-Chief taking heat for this travesty of justice?
Because this isn’t the Bush administration.
Firedoglake blogger, David House, has been detailing a recent visit with Bradley Manning, accused of leaking classified documents to Wikileaks, at a military prison at the Quantico Marine base in Virginia (h/t Weasel Zippers). Of course, House bemoaned the ‘inhumane’ treatment of Manning, describing the toll that months of solitary confinement have taken on his physical and mental well-being.
AFP ran with the story and made it clear that they had no intention of offering a balanced report. In fact, viewing the headline, one would never know that the story came from an extremely liberal website, reading more as fact than a slanted accusation.
For all of the bluster and glory, for all of the pomp and circumstance and yes, for all of the anticipated hope and the promised change, the whirlwind of hype and expectation surrounding the President a mere two years earlier has virtually dissolved, and Barack Obama has set a course that will leave his legacy as no more than a footnote in American Presidential history.
Bill O'Reilly on Wednesday smacked down Bill Maher when the comedian blamed Barack Obama's bad poll numbers on racism.
In the first part of his much-anticipated interview with the "Real Time" host, O'Reilly asked Maher's opinion on why the public seems to have soured on the President.
After blaming Obama's woes on everyone but Obama himself, Maher said, "Of course a lot of it is racially..."
Maher didn't get a chance to finish this pathetic thought for O'Reilly cut him off mid-sentence (video follows with transcript and commentary):
After a tour of the Boston Medical Center, Kerry blamed Democrat struggles across the nation on the obvious problem - the voters.
The Boston Herald reports that Kerry took his pent-up election anger out on clueless voters (emphasis mine):
"We have an electorate that doesn't always pay that much attention to what's going on so people are influenced by a simple slogan rather than the facts or the truth or what's happening."
Kerry made the remarks following questions about the re-election campaign of Barney Frank. Doubling down on the fact-challenged voter assertion, he stated:
"I think a lot of the anger today ... is not directed at the right people. Barney is prepared, as others are, to explain what we're doing. I think when people hear the facts and they see what we're doing, it frankly makes sense."
Be sure to explain it. Very. Slowly.
Looking down on people isn't exactly a new platform for Kerry...
- Inadequate funding of preschool programs
- Poor college counseling programs for middle and high school aged children
- High school dropout rates
- A lack of international standardization for curriculum
- Skyrocketing costs of education
No, Henry has stumbled onto the real, super secret reason why students are failing to finish their college work: Sarah Palin and George Bush.
To be accurate, it's not so much the direct fault of Palin and Bush - rather, it is those of you who support them, their stupid comments, and their intellectually uninterested ways. Their fans see them as real people and because of that, they feel comfort in an unchallenging environment.
Rollins explains why ‘America doesn't seem to value a college education the way it used to':
Alter, appearing Wednesday on MSNBC’s “The Daily Rundown,” called the BP oil spill crisis “the perfect metaphor” for Obama’s presidency so far. “It’s been cleaning up a lot of the messes left to him by his predecessors,” he stated.
Alter added that Obama is trying to stop an economic depression “that, you know, began to happen on George Bush’s watch.”
“It is a distraction from Obama’s own agenda,” Alter added about the oil spill, “and in that sense, it irritates him.”
“Behind the scenes, President Obama from day one was actually very engaged,” Scarborough argued. “[Obama] told his White House staff ‘This is job one,’ ordered all of the agencies to throw the full force of the federal government behind this. I mean...we’ve got the minutes of the meeting from April 22 where he said that.”
Rep. King countered that the administration lacked style in its handling of the crisis, and took eight days to declare it a “matter of national significance.”
Though Scarborough said that President Obama has done everything of “substance” to respond to the spill, King also asked Scarborough what more President Bush could have done to handle the Katrina crisis.
“What could George Bush have done?” Scarborough asked. “A hell of a lot.”
“This is one of the most obscene comparisons, between Katrina and BP,” Scarborough spat out. “I was on the ground from day one. I can tell you the federal government was not there. The state government was not there. The local government was not there.”
“No, you’re wrong, You’re wrong. That is not FEMA’s job,” Rep. King shot back. “That is the job of the mayor and the governor for the first two or three days.”
A transcript of the show’s segment is as follows:
The gist of the piece? Every major catastrophe to hit America can be traced to one singular event - George Bush and the 2000 Presidential election results.
Shivani starts off by listing examples of American catastrophes - 9/11, Enron, Katrina, Wall Street, the BP spill.
He then explains (emphasis mine throughout):
"It all began with the Florida election theft in 2000 (all of the now-familiar excuses were first used in full force, in total conjugation, for this first disaster). It gave a signal to everyone managing and regulating and overseeing any kind of operation, public or private, that henceforth it was the day of the jackals, that accountability and honesty and certitude were out the door."
For good measure - and in tune with his liberal colleagues - the BP oil spill is singled out as being directly Bush's fault:
"Does the Media Care About Unemployment?" asked Kevin Drum, a writer for the liberal Mother Jones. Drum postulated that that "the media focused way more on economic hard luck stories in the early 80s than they do now."
While a liberal noting the double standard is refreshing, Drum went on to attribute it to a litany of possible reasons, all the while ignoring the obvious, and painfully simple answer right before his eyes: as B. Daniel Blatt writes, "Because a Republican’s Not in the White House."