ProgressVirginia reported Tuesday afternoon that the Virginia Senate’s Privileges and Elections Committee killed Sen. Charles “Bill” Carrico Sr.’s electoral college-rigging bill, despite an offer by Carrico to amend the bill to award electors in proportion to the state’s popular vote. The vote was 11-4 against the bill, although it will not be official until the close of the committee meeting.
Social activist Deray McKessan criticized the media over the weekend for the way they had handled a white biker shootout in Texas with "nuance," but black rioters in Baltimore who did not kill anyone were not "humanized" in the same way.
In an interview on Sunday, McKessan explained to CNN host Brian Stelter than he had quit his job as a school administrator after Michael Brown was killed.
"The reason that I quit was that I want to figure out how to use my skills and talent to fight in this space because you just can't kill people," he said. "All the work that I did in education was important, but kids have to be alive to learn."
McKessan slammed the media for what he called "a constant pathologizing of black bodies," which gave the impression that "when black people assemble, it's always criminal."
"What you saw in St. Louis, the police were literally attacking protesters, and that wasn't always the narrative that was put out by the mainstream media," he noted. "What you saw in Baltimore sometimes, you saw people sort of focusing on the property damage and not actually people actually focusing on what caused the unrest in the first place."
"So when I see broadcasts, news articles that present the police narrative as true," McKessan added before being interrupted.
"But it is oftentimes true," Stelter insisted.
"Is it true?" McKessan asked. "I don't know if it was true with Mike Brown. Maybe we differ on what true means."
Economist Bruce Bartlett, a former adviser to both Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush, warned over the weekend that Fox News had damaged the Republican Party by creating a bubble for conservatives to brainwash themselves.
In his paper "How Fox News Changed American Media and Political Dynamics" published earlier this month, Bartlett theorized that watching the network was essentially "self-brainwashing" for viewers, making them believe that the United States was a more conservative nation than it actually was. And so the Republican Party had responded by running radical conservatives that representative Fox News viewers, but not the true state of the electorate.
"Many conservatives live in a bubble where they watch only Fox News on television, they listen only to conservative talk radio -- Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, many of the same people," Bartlett told CNN's Brian Stelter on Sunday. "When they go onto the Internet, they look at conservative websites like National Review, Newsmax, World Net Daily."
"And so, they are completely in a universe in which they are hearing the same exact ideas, the same arguments, the same limited amount of data repeated over and over and over again. And that's brainwashing."
Bartlett asserted that it was a bigger problem for conservatives than liberals because they did not have their own network for a long time, and then they "drank very heavily from the Fox waters."
McCain never met a war or military conflict he didn't want to escalate and this Memorial Day weekend was no different. Here's soon to be retired Face the Nation host Bob Schieffer's last big wet kiss for Sen. McCrashy on this Sunday's show.
SCHIEFFER: And for more on this, we`re now joined by the chairman of the Armed Services Committee, John McCain.
Well, you heard what Clarissa just said. You have called this a strategy a disaster, but what can, what should we be doing about this?
SEN. JOHN MCCAIN (R), ARIZONA: I think there`s a lot of things we can do.
First, have the president recognize that he was incorrect when he said we`re not losing. We had before the Senate Armed Services Committee this week two architects of the surge that won. And we did have it won, until the decision was made to withdraw all troops.
Weekly Standard editor Bill Kristol on Sunday slammed states that had repealed the death penalty because he said that executions were an "important symbol" of justice.
Last week, Republican Nebraska lawmakers passed legislation that would repeal the state's death penalty on the grounds that it was an example of a wasteful government program. The Republican governor vowed to veto the bill, but lawmakers suggested that they could have enough votes to overturn a veto.
During a panel discussion on ABC News, conservative CNN pundit S.E. Cupp asserted that the tide had turned, and that even many religious conservatives now opposed the death penalty.
"I don't find it to be moral, I don't find it to be just," she said. "The wrongful convictions that we hear about all the time. It is costly, it is bankrupted entire counties. And so for me, I've been trying to convince fellow conservatives to have a change of heart on this issue."
But Kristol said that he was "convinced" that executions were both "just" and an "important symbol."
"I'm a defender of the death penalty," he explained. "I think it is both just and an important symbol for really heinous crimes and how serious we take the state's obligations to preserve life actually."
Sen. Bernie Sanders appeared on this Sunday's Reliable Sources and spoke to host Brian Stelter about his recent criticism of the media and their demands for a food fight between Sanders and his opponent in the 2016 Democratic presidential primary, Hillary Clinton.
Sanders didn't hold back and let them have it once again for their choices on which topics to report: Bernie Sanders Slams The Media For Their Biased Presidential Campaign Coverage:
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) called out the media for their biased coverage of presidential campaigns, and refusal to inform the American people during an interview on CNN’s Reliable Sources.
During the interview, Sanders hit on the media bias against discussing issues, and the media’s obsession with negative campaigning. [...]
Hard news is expensive. It costs money to establish and run news divisions around the world. The corporate media discovered that devoting airtime to the latest celebrity scandal was cheap and brought easy ratings. This same mentality has spilled into presidential campaign coverage. The media is more interested in the soap opera storylines of presidential campaigns than the issues.
As time seems to stand still with Saturn retrograde, the pressure continues, although destination is undeniably unguided (Mars in Gemini). We’re in constant movement to pave our way towards a goal, but like treading nonstop on a hamster wheel – the only thing we may be creating is a lot of wind. Moving forward will be almost impossible as miscommunications, distractions and breakdowns (Mercury retrograde) rise unexpectedly from the past, as a way to come back to life. What had been previously misread, ignored, overlooked and/or misunderstood will continue to confront us for a final fix and resolution.
While we may try a variety of different paths in order to figure out what the real issue has been all this time – finding the answer(s) will depend on some major brainstorming, as well as some serious footwork. And the amount of energy that we may hope to burn this week will be generously influenced by the rising waters of Neptune. Oceans of emotions will seemingly flood onto our path, streaming with powerful waves of sensitivities, imagination, hope and healing, as well as guilt, delusions and helplessness.
Everything I’ve ever let go of has claw marks on it. David Foster Wallace
Fox's Howard Kurtz did his best to try to reduce the debate we've seen over who is at fault for the way things have gone in Iraq and the rest of the Middle East and the rise of ISIS as just some partisan food fight between his network and MSNBC on this Sunday's Media Buzz.
After showing some footage of his cohort Sean Hannity blaming President Obama and Hillary Clinton for all of our problems in the Middle East, and of Al Sharpton on MSBC saying the rise of ISIS is a “very real consequence from the U.S. invasion of Iraq,” here's how Kurtz framed the rest of the segment.
KURTZ: I feel like I'm back in 2003. Is there too much partisan point scoring here?
I assume by “partisan point scoring” Kurtz one side lying and the other one telling the truth, but I digress. Of course his guest, Susan Ferrechio from the right-wing rag the Washington Examiner agreed with Kurtz, and used it as an opportunity to immediately attack President Obama, or “both sides” if we're talking about the Congress.
FERRECHIO: There's no... there's nothing to cover in terms of what to do next and that's because... and what's missing here is the coverage of how Congress and the White House are unable and unwilling to come up with a real strategy for dealing with the crisis in the Middle East. There's nothing to write about, but there's also very little coverage of the fact that they're not coming up with a plan.
Republican presidential candidate Mick Huckabee insisted on Sunday that the president of the United States would not have to follow a ruling that struck down bans on same-sex marriage because the Supreme Court was not the "Supreme Being."
"You seemed to indicate that as president, you wouldn't necessarily obey court rulings, even the Supreme Court," Fox News host Chris Wallace pointed out during an interview on Sunday. "We have operated under the principle of judicial review since the Marbury v. Madison case in 1803."
According to the GOP candidate, the United States would be operating under "judicial supremacy" instead of judicial review if bans on same-sex marriage were to be struck down.
"Presidents have understood that the Supreme Court cannot make a law, they cannot make it, the legislature has to make it, the executive branch has to sign it and enforce it," Huckabee said. "And the notion that the Supreme Court comes up with the ruling and that automatically subjects the two other branches to following it defies everything there is about the three equal branches of government."
"The Supreme Court is not the supreme branch," he added. "And for God's sake, it's not the Supreme Being."
Huckabee wondered what would happen if the Supreme Court ruled on "who was going to be the next president."
On ABC's This Week, Bill Kristol attacked Rand Paul for blocking an extension of the Patriot Act over the weekend and called him a "liberal Democrat" for agreeing on that and a number of other issues with progressive House member, Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN).
I hate to break it to Bloody Bill, but agreeing on a handful of topics doesn't make Rand Paul a "liberal Democrat." You guys are going to have to keep him. I do actually agree with Kristol that some of Paul's positions may make it hard for him to gain traction in the Republican 2016 primary.
Of course, in order to take Paul or the majority of them who say they're running seriously, you have to believe that the lot of them actually want to be president, and not just increase their political donations and speaking fees. I put Paul squarely in the grifter camp, just like his daddy. His family figured out this racket a long time ago.
That said, unlike Bill Kristol, I was happy to see Paul out there leading the bipartisan opposition to extending the Patriot Act and pissing off his leadership over the holiday weekend: Randstand: Republican Presidential Candidate Leads Bipartisan Opposition to Patriot Act:
Anyone else out there think that Steve Kornacki absolutely ruined Chris Hayes' weekend show when he took over? He's turned it into just another version of Hardball or Meet the Press, countless segments on polling and the presidential horse race, lying that goes unchecked, and of course segments like this one from his show this Sunday where you have a "fair and balanced" debate between someone who is lying, and someone who is not.
As The Washington Post reported last week, it seems Rand Paul is the latest member of the 2016 GOP presidential clown car to catch the flat tax fever, and apparently The Heritage Foundation's Steve Moore is an "unofficial adviser" (whatever that means) to Rand Paul and helping him write his tax policy, so I assume that's all the excuse they needed to bring him on this weekend.
They knew what they were going to get from him, which is of course him arguing about how terribly complicated our tax code is, lying and pretending that a flat tax is popular, and more trickle down economics clap trap and pretending the American public is not already keenly aware of what the economic policies of Ronald Reagan really meant for the country.
Thankfully the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities' Jared Bernstein was there to push back at Moore's assertions, because you weren't going to see Kornacki do it.
Scott Walker has a long history of cronyism. Walker had so many cronies and campaign donors to take care of that he had dozens of civil service jobs changed so that he could take care of his friends and benefactors.
Yesterday, Karoli wrote about one of the most recent and most egregious of these when Walker appointed the son of Michael Grebe, one of Walker's dark money masters, to the Wisconsin University Board of Regents.
Now, Walker is starting to fill judicial vacancies with political appointees and cronies.
The first of these was Walker's appointment of Rebecca Bradley to serve on the District 1 Court of Appeals.
It should be noted that Bradley served for only two years at Children's Court and didn't handle all of the duties of that assignment. Obviously, Walker didn't appoint her for her experience.
So why her?
Dana Perino has a memoir out that's currently at #2 on the New York Times hardcover nonfiction bestseller list -- but the success of the book and the fact that her ex-boss has been out of office for more than six years aren't stopping her from working the refs to get him better media coverage, as NewsBusters reports:
Former White House press secretary and Fox News host Dana Perino appeared on The Kelly File on Friday night to lament that she shared a touching story about President Bush visiting wounded soldiers in Washington with National Public Radio, but they edited out a family who was overjoyed to see the president, choosing to focus just on an angry mother who was mad at Bush.
Here's the story NPR cut, as Perino recounted it to Kelly:
Perino said that Bush visited a wounded Marine who had not opened his eyes since his Humvee was hit by an IED in Iraq.
If you thought the arrest of Darron Dellon Dennis Wint for the quadruple murder of a Washington, D.C. family and their housekeeper was something Fox News would avoid politicizing, think again. Fox’s Greg Gutfeld used the news to go off on a race-baiting rant against Al Sharpton, Michael Moore, Bill de Blasio, Black Lives Matter protesters, BBC, ACORN and privacy activists.
On this Friday’s The Five, Gutfeld started off a discussion about Wint’s arrest with the following:
The quadruple murder suspect has been caught. Quickly. But by whom? Al Sharpton? Michael Moore? Bill de Blasio? No, the cops. Yep, another innocent victim of an unjust society backed by evil law enforcement. I’m sorry, I’m just helping craft the story for the left, BBC and those well-paid Ferguson protesters. After all, we know he’s as innocent as the driven snow. I’m sorry, snow is white and that’s a racist microaggression.
…So how did the cops find this creep? Phone records! Now, did we violate his rights there? And did we violate everyone’s rights by violating his? After all, that’s how we applied the logic to surveilling terrorists. Heck, if we treated this thug like a terrorist, he’d still be out ordering Domino’s.
Burnt Orange Report: GOP-controlled Texas legislature wants to stop Planned Parenthood from performing cancer screenings.
Calculated Risk: Fed chief Janet Yellen says an interest rate hike is coming in 2005.
Sarah Posner: Ben Carson wants to get Biblical on the American tax code. Or at least he thinks he does.
Raw Story: Carly Fiorina now says Hillary Clinton “must not be the president of these United States.”
Speaking of which, your quote of the day:
“A focused, determined, intelligent, empathetic, powerful leader.” (Carly Fiorina, on Hillary Clinton, 2008)
Guest blogging Mike's Blog Round the last time this week is Jon Perr from Perrspectives. Send your tips, recommendations, comments and angst to mbru AT crooksandliars DOT com.
Happy Memorial Day Sunday everyone! I hope you're enjoying your holiday. How about a little Gap Band to start off your morning?
Here's what's on the agenda for this week on the bobblehead shows, and I'm sure we'll all be shocked to see that John McCain is making his ten gazillionth appearance, and neocons Bloody Bill Kristol and Former U.N. Ambassador and national embarrassment John Bolton are being allowed on to pollute our airways.
Meet the Press:
Preempted for Formula One Racing (Otherwise known as the best hour of Meet the Press you'll ever watch.)
Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R)
Powerhouse Roundtable: Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN), Bill Kristol, Donna Brazile, and S.E. Cupp
Face the Nation
John McCain (R-AZ), Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA)
Panel on ISIS: David Rohde and Rajiv Chandrasekaran
Panel on the Vietnam War: Peter Arnett, David Hume Kennerly, Laura Palmer and Bill Plante.
Fox News Sunday:
Mike Huckabee (R-Ark), John Bolton, Former Bush U.N. Ambassador
Panel: Brit Hume, Susan Page, George Will and Bob Woodward
CNN State of the Union
HUD Secretary Julian Castro, Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL), Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI)
So, what's catching your eye this morning?
AW! Those hippies on the cover of the Woodstock album are still together after 46 years.
Family values hippies for the win!
via 107.3 The Wave on Facebook
Open thread below....
Birdsongs of the Mesozoic was so damn progressive that they considered their genre to be "Rock in Opposition." If you don't know what that means, basically it's a genre that is considered more of a social movement than a musical style. Another progressive band, Henry Cow, spearheaded the movement as an answer to the mainstream music industry that would not give bands like them a shot. It's not inaccurate to think of it as the anti-music industry, to put it in simple terms. Regardless of the social motivations, the talent is absolutely there with Birdsongs of the Mesozoic, and you can hear it in their complex arrangements and virtuosic musicianship.
What are your favorite musical social movements?
Hillary hurt hedgies' fee-fees this week and now they're stomping their little hooves, huffing and weeping like the WATBs they are.
What could Hillary possibly say that would make them so defensive? She just spoke the truth, just like Obama did this week. Simply put:
President Barack Obama called the group "society's lottery winners" last week, noting that the top 25 earning hedge fund managers made more in 2014 ($11.6 billion) than the roughly 158,000 kindergarten teachers in the U.S. did combined ($8.5 billion).
Presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton cited the same statistic in joining Obama's call for ending carried interest tax treatment, echoing what she said in her first campaign speech: there's "something wrong" when "hedge fund managers pay lower tax rates than nurses or the truckers."
CNBC has some monumentally idiotic (and anonymous) quotes from hedgies:
One prominent investor—who, like others, asked to remain anonymous given the divisive subject—called the rhetoric "class warfare" and noted other times in history, including before World War II, when financial speculators were unfairly blamed by politicians.
"Instead of the Jews, it's the hedge fund managers," the person said.
Oh, pulease. I can almost hear the tiny flea playing the tiny violin for him. But they were just warming up.
Won't happen 'till we found Neocon U. https://t.co/ASwoxDLyU1
— Bill Kristol (@BillKristol) May 20, 2015
And what will the outline for Neocon U's required "Introduction to Modern American History" freshman seminar look like?
I'm glad you asked. From USA today, one of the many, many media outlets where Bill Kristol is still given a national platform and you and I are not:
William Kristol: We were right to fight in Iraq
Obama threw away hard-earned gains.
We were right to invade Iraq in 2003 to remove Saddam Hussein, and to complete the job we should have finished in 1991.
Even with the absence of caches of weapons of mass destruction, and the mistakes we made in failing to send enough troops at first and to provide security from the beginning for the Iraqi people, we were right to persevere through several difficult years. We were able to bring the war to a reasonably successful conclusion in 2008.