Apparently journalists are happy to forgive when they agree with their former opponents.

Henry M. Paulson, Jr., Secretary of the Treasury under President George W. Bush, wrote an op-ed in The New York Times on June 22, warning of the financial risks of climate change. Soon afterward, Paulson was publicly joined by billionaire liberal donors Tom Steyer and Michael Bloomberg in the “Risky Business” campaign to highlight the alleged “economic risks of climate change in the United States.”

PBS anchor Judy Woodruff asked a question on Monday’s NewsHour that perfectly captured the modern liberal mentality about government spending and debt.

During a taped interview with former Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, Woodruff asked:

Most of America’s media think President Obama's 2009 bailout of General Motors and Chrysler was a huge success.

Former Massachusetts Democratic Congressman Barney Frank threw cold water on this meme on NBC’s Meet the Press Sunday correctly informing viewers that the auto bailout lost money for the federal government. By contrast, we made money from George W. Bush's 2008 bank bailout (video follows with transcript and commentary):

I’ve written several articles skewering HBO for producing political projects destined to air immediately prior to the 2012 election, where the vast majority of the cast and crew are passionate Barack Obama supporters, and where the content is aimed at the Democrat’s two favorite Republican villains: Sarah Palin and Dick Cheney. So, when I sat down to watch HBO’s Too Big to Fail, I prepared myself for the worst. What I didn’t expect was the big surprise awaiting me.

Too Big to Fail, which premieres on HBO on May 23, 2011, features a star studded cast recounting the events that led to the financial crisis and bailouts by the U.S. government in 2008. It is a mini-series packed into a 98-minute made-for-television movie where several essential characters are quickly introduced and where finance and economics are casually discussed. It may help if one has a baseline of knowledge about the crisis before watching the movie. If one doesn’t know who Henry Paulson, Ben Bernanke, and Timothy Geithner are or what Lehman Brothers, Goldman Sachs, and AIG are, it may prove slightly difficult to follow.

Although the Director, Curtis Hanson (L.A. Confidential, 8 Mile), was limited to telling a very long and complicated story in a very short amount of time, he was able to skillfully pull it off. Perhaps this is because the screenwriter, Peter Gould (Breaking Bad), deftly adapted Andrew Ross Sorkin’s 2009 prize winning New York Times Bestseller, Too Big to Fail.

When a Democrat or leftist makes an ill-advised remark, it seems that there's a three-stage process at the Associated Press, and perhaps in most other establishment press outlets, for handling it. It goes roughly like this:

  • Stage 1 - Ignore it as long as you can. If there isn't much outcry, keep ignoring it.
  • Stage 2 - If there ends up being enough of an outcry from conservatives or Republicans to warrant coverage, make sure that the story is about the criticism at least as much as the remark.
  • Stage 3 - In the ensuing coverage, leave out what was originally said.

The Associated Press is currently and grudgingly at Stage 2 with Harry Reid's remark that "but for me, we'd be in a worldwide depression," as seen below (reproduced in full for fair use and discussion purposes):

CNN's Fareed Zakaria on Sunday demonstrated just how ignorant most media members are of how the federal budget works.

During the most recent installment of "Fareed Zakaria GPS," the host actually said, "[T]he Bush tax cuts are the single largest part of the black hole that is the federal budget deficit."

Before we examine the staggering stupidity on display here, let's first look at exactly what Zakaria said (video embedded below the fold with transcript):

A rather shocking thing happened on Sunday's "Meet the Press": host David Gregory asked Alan Greenspan and Henry Paulson if it would be a mistake to let the Bush tax cuts expire.

Chatting with the former Federal Reserve Chairman and former Treasury Secretary, Gregory referenced Tuesday's Wall Street Journal article about what the impact of allowing these tax cuts to expire would be on the budget and the economy.

Gregory first asked Paulson and then Greenspan, "Is that a bad idea?" (video embedded below the fold with transcript, relevant section at 6:48):

If you needed an alarm to go off signaling President Obama's honeymoon with the press being over, you got it Thursday when former CBS "Evening News" anchor Dan Rather severely chastised the new administration for not doing enough to solve today's economic problems.

Writing for the Daily Beast, the man who once used a forged document in an attempt to bring down former President George W. Bush wondered why more people aren't outraged about how little has been done by Obama and Company to right what he believes is a sinking ship.

Caution -- you're about to enter a no kidding zone:

KrugmanThe Associated Press can't even get it right in a three-paragraph item about a White House ceremonial event.

In a story Monday afternoon about President Bush's meeting with two Nobel Prize-winning scientists and Nobel Economics winner Paul Krugman, the unbylined AP writer claimed that Krugman opposed the government's financial bailout. Evidence abounds that this is not only not the case, but that Krugman wants the bailouts to be bigger, and to involve more direct government ownership.

Here are the first and third paragraphs from the story (link probably will not work after about a week):

Three 2008 Nobel laureates from the United States lined up with President George W. Bush on Monday for an Oval Office photograph to mark their achievements.

..... The third laureate at the White House was Paul Krugman of New York, who won the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences for his work on international trade patterns. Krugman, a frequent critic of the Bush administration who opposed the recent $700 billion financial bailout, is a Princeton University professor and New York Times columnist.

Since Krugman's supposed opposition may become folklore shortly, it's best to take a cruise through Krugman's blog posts to show that the claim is terribly outdated and currently flat-out wrong:

Are the good folks at the New York Times breaking ranks and actually criticizing a decision by president-elect Barack Obama?

Such seemed to be the case Tuesday when the Gray Lady published, on the front page of the business section no less, an article highly critical of proposed Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner.

Entitled "Where Was Geithner in Turmoil?", Andrew Ross Sorkin's piece actually pointed fingers at Obama's choice to head the Treasury department for his potential involvement in the nation's current financial crisis (emphasis added throughout):

So what exactly is the government doing with your money? Fox Business Network's Alexis Glick would like to know.

Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson announced Nov. 12 he would be redirecting the $700 billion bailout to focus on propping up financial institutions instead of buying troubled mortgage assets, which was the original intent of the rescue plan.

Glick, the host of FBN's "Money for Breakfast," told the CBS's "The Early Show" Nov 13 that the Treasury Department's move away from the original plan to buy up troubled mortgages "does not make sense" and was "actually pretty outrageous":

[T]he markets responded to that yesterday ... Look, the original intent of this Troubled Asset Relief Program was to purchase troubled assets. And I think the marketplace started to adjust several weeks ago when we started to see the size and magnitude of the capital injections.

CNBCpaulsonForcesBanks1008Gee, and I thought I might be pushing the envelope on September 28 when I expressed concern that the "bailout" with the made-up $700 billion price tag that turned into the pork-loaded "bailout" with the made-up $850 billion price tag "blackmail" (though "extortion" may be the more appropriate word).

It is clear that this is indeed the case, at least twice over. First, there were the threats made by the Treasury Secretary, the President, and the Fed Chairman warning of a banking Armageddon if Congress didn't pass the bill.

Now there's clear evidence, reported with stunning casualness by CNBC, that Paulson & Co. threatened the big banks in some way to force them to "accept" Uncle Sam's preferred equity investments: