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Marion On November - 13 - 2010
Duped

Wana Buy a Story?

People just don’t know and won’t believe that the President doesn’t legislate.

This tax cuts brouhaha is another “death panel” debate. It’s when someone takes a concept, labels it and spins it like a top. We all know the origin of the “death panel” meme and how, eventually, it resulted in a good and viable concept – end of life care – being scrapped.

Well, this year’s model is the Bush tax cuts. HuffPo DELIBERATELY ran with a storyline that was nothing more than out-and-outright libel: deliberately misquoting a high-ranking White House official and writing an article surrounding that misquote that was a tissue of lies as well as a gaggle of supposition, innuendo and second-guessing. HuffPo, pointedly, stated that the White House was “CAVING” on the tax cuts.

It was a non-story spun into a panic, and the sheeple bought it. Countless numbers of petitions started, Facebook pages springing up, people CONDEMNING the President. This happened on Thursday. The previous Saturday in his weekly address, the President solidly affirmed, yet again, that the Bush tax cuts would be made permanent for families earning less than $250K and individuals earning less than $200K. He also CONFIRMED that it was impossible to allow such tax cuts for the rich to become permanent.

NOWHERE, other than Huffington Post, did this story appear. The Daily Beast and Talking Points Memo picked it up, but with a link to HP, as if they didn’t want to claim it. It was the “real” newspapers who broke its credence: Greg Sargent in The Plum Line, his WaPo blog, actually followed the story up, calling up Axelrod and speaking to other White House communications people.

Axelrod totally disclaims he either said or implied anything about the WH caving on the tax cuts. Sargent printed this and his own opinion was that the White House was telling the truth, and that Huffington Post was doing the spinning. Later the NYT reiterated that.

At a press conference in Japan, the President was inundated with questions about this, including a particularly smartass one from Savannah Guthrie (and someone should tell this woman that the President of the United States needs to be addressed with RESPECT) about how he was “negotiating” these tax cuts, which prompted him to reply shortly that he negotiated in Washington and not in Japan.

Pretty obvious that everyone believes an irresponsible cub reporter and a has-been political hack trying to score points and promote his boss lady’s anti-Obama agenda rather that the President, himself.

And to add insult to injury and to PROVE a point I’ve laboured long and hard, it’s bad enough that some so-called Progressives are referring to Obama as the “affirmative action” President, but one person in particular blamed all of this on David Axelrod, whom she called the “fat, drunken Jew.”

Of course, HuffPo wants Obama to be forced into making the top-tier tax cuts permanent. Are you kidding? Madam will be rolling in clover; besides, how many times does one need to be told that Huffington Post is a faux Progressive site.

Yesterday, the same authors published an “update” on the original article, quoting Obama’s definitive denial of their premise, but its gist was highly suggestive, with a dismissive air that implied the President wasn’t to be believed. The big red tabloid banner which graced the site yesterday proclaimed that George Bush lifted huge portions of his recently-published book from other sources. In other words, he plagiarised. That’s rich for Huffington, considering she was sued in a very BIG and very PUBLIC way years ago when she was Miss Stanisopoulos, living in Britain off the coattails of the late Bernard Levin and trying desperately to be accepted as a part of the British political media intelligentsia, for plagiarism. In fact, that high-profiled case at the High Court signaled her departure from the United Kingdom for our shores, where – it appears – we are a bit more gullible and shallow when it comes to Greeks causing shifts and rifts.

Today, however, various other authors who wrote about and studied the Bush Administration, including Bob Woodward, the unofficial Presidential muckraker who wrote four books on the Bush regime, slapped Huffington Post in the chops on this “exclusive,” saying that Bush would have had access to NSC documentation and memos, as would others who have written about the regime; but most professionals who have read his book deny that there is any plagiarism as such.

A lot of people opine that Huffington Post is fast becoming Drudge for Progressives. I prefer to think of its editor-in-chief as the reincarnation of P T Barnum’s belief that there’s a sucker born every minute, thus proving that certain elements of the Left are as gullible as the Right.

20 Responses so far.

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  1. choicelady says:

    Thank you so much, Marion! I did not even READ the stinking story because I knew it was a hype and a lie from the screaming headline.

    Over the past two days I’ve engaged with the “religion” section on a rather insipid article about the middle ground between science and religion. I did not think much of the article, but what horrified me was the unbelievable stereotyping of “religion”. So, of course, being both choicelady AND the Churchlady (better hair and shoes, natch) I began replying. I openly represent a significant part of the faith community that is neither superstitious nor hateful, but when I reviewed what they let in, I was shocked -- I was censored vigorously for comments that were both historical and informative. The very idea that there is a progressive faith presence that is almost equal in size to the loony side is apparently NOT appreciated by the HP censors. How terribly scary!

    I think you’re on the money, Marion -- this bitch wants Obama to fail so she can keep the parts of the RW agenda that benefit her and her rich cronies. What utterly horrifies me is that SHE IS SUCCEEDING. The Left on HP are no better than ‘baggers in terms of their prejudices, rants, and dismissal. Your opening is accurate -- they don’t even understand democracy and the separation of powers.

    I am so frightened for our nation. I used to believe that when push came to shove we would opt for smart and better things, but that is clearly NOT true any longer. When your Faux Friends -- AH -- shove people into panic and false “movements” over things that do not even exist -- then we have real trouble. Arianna is the puppeteer and propagandist, and with her influence and even power, we are in real danger.

  2. ClusterFoxWarrior says:

    Puff-Ho has disgusted me and soured me beyond my taste buds.

    We have people saying “Obama has turned on me and lost my support,” throwing the President under the proverbial bus when he needs our support the most.

    Plus, haven’t people forgotten how Obama has ALWAYS said that change would NOT come easy and there would be times that we would disagree with how he accomplished his agenda?

    IF Obama has to temporarily extend the tax cuts for those at the top just to make the tax cuts for the middle permanent, I won’t be too happy with it, but I won’t be disappointed either. That’s like complaining about getting a red slushie when I wanted a blue slushie. I just don’t see why the unprofessional left is unwilling to accept the fact that the tax cuts for the middle will be made permanent through SOME form of negotiation.

    Heck, Puff-ho did this SAME bullshit with the public option. Not a lot of people understand that the public option didn’t have the votes to pass muster in the Senate, then they talk about how the President should have negotiated down to public option starting with single payer; do these folks NOT understand how politics works? If you have Senator X unwilling to support public option, then how the heck would they support public option even IF you negotiated down starting with single payer? Not to mention that single payer didn’t even have the votes to pass muster in the House, which is why it was NEVER on the table.

    But these “progressives” who have been alienated by Obama won’t be that big a deal; they did the same with Clinton, and Clinton managed to get re-elected without the support of the progressive left. Most of them thought that they could only accomplish change by voting for Obama, which is why they are complaining about him caving and being too far to the right. Most of the legislation he has passed has been middle ground, which is how most legislation gets passed, it’s Civics 101.

    One last point: I don’t get the lefty talking point about Obama acting like a Republican, seeing as he’s gotten NO Republican support.

  3. Khirad says:

    Yes, but as with the India farce, no retractions expected, nor needed.

    Almost every third comment was: “well, this is it, he lost my vote.”

    Congratulations Bearded Lady, mission ratfuck almost complete.

    • bitohistory says:

      I think my site to be highly skeptical of is “Politico.” Their pronouncements are treated as “Belt-Way Gospel” brought down from on high by respected journalists. Rarely are any of their reports questioned even when the stories are backed with sources as credible as “sources say”, “inside sources say”, and the all important “sources close to the WH staff say.”
      When Politico first began I saw them as a center right and I had no problem with that, “Take them with a grain or two of of salt” I thought. But no longer. Their views are widely accepted with little dissent from Fox, CNN and MSNBC, yet just last week I heard one reporter opine that the use of the filibuster did not affect the “Obama agenda”, another stated the the Citizens United decision and all the money in the midterms was no big deal. A third was ReWrite I read on the misleading and shallow story that they wrote.

    • escribacat says:

      Agreed, Khirad. The atmosphere was so toxic with whine on that thread I had to leave.

    • AdLib says:

      What’s really messed up is that so many legit Progressive people and organizations have become vested in HP so it’s hard to find many Progressive people or entities that would be willing to expose it for what it is.

      Consider how intertwined HP has become in MSNBC and many other media outlets and blogs. Like a parasite, attacking it can be attacking all those it is attached to.

      No such reticence here at The Planet and at a number of other sites but it’s not something I see at the really big Progressive sites.

      The wolf in sheep’s clothing has successfully entered the herd and pushed to the front to lead it…and many of the other sheep are committed to following it.

      • bitohistory says:

        AdLib, I am a tad curious about what will happen to the relationship between Puff-Ho and MSNBC with the merger (selling) of Newsweek and Daily Beast. The previous arrangement was WaPO/ Newsweek and MSNBC. Now there will be DB and
        Newsweek. Will Huff get cut out at MSNBC? I did notice 2 Beast people on MSNBC this week. Of course they are both corporate and will spew the same trash, but I find it interesting.

        What in the hell is going on at The Planet to be able to see through this fog? Are you sending out hypnotic waves? Secret subliminal messages? Spiked drinking water? (which reminds me, I didn’t get my case this week.)

        • Marion says:

          I was about to make that point, re Newsweek. Huffington hates Tina Brown, a REAL journalist of the sort she can only dream to be. Yep, Brown married the boss when she was at The Times of London -- she was the British Sally Quinn to Harold Evans’s Ben Bradlee -- but she was a bona fide journalist with kudos before that. And she’s a real wunderkind, having been the editor of The Tatler at 25.

          I think whatever the Newsweek Beast combo has to offer MSNBC, it will be fact-based. Tina Brown brought investigative journalism back to both Vanity Fair and The New Yorker.

          My guess is that you’ll see less of Huffington and her new creature Howard the Hack and more of Tina and the likes of Richard Wolff and John Avlon.

          • bitohistory says:

            I have no idea of the relationship between Ms. Brown an AH. Looking at Muckety they travel in similar circles and have various mutual entanglements. My thought was that networks have “arrangements and agreements” with certain print media. NBC/MNBC has had such an agreement with WaPo/Newsweek. I think NBC may start having more Daily Beast people and less HP people.
            I know nothing about marriages to whom and who plays polo or brunches together. As to who is or is not a hack, well, I’ll leave that aspersion to others to characterize.

      • PatsyT says:

        Kinda how it was for the Iraq war.. Remember Michael Moore getting his Oscar and calling out Bush on the war? I remember so many people being aghast with that but he was ahead of his time.

        • Khirad says:

          I always love thinking back to that. He caught so much heat at the time.

          Now, the things he said in that movie are completely uncontroversial, because he was right about almost everything.

    • bitohistory says:

      Khirad, that is the point that disturbs me the most. Elections can be won or lost by as little as 10 votes per precinct. Is this the bearded lady’s and the chimpmonk’s plan to undermine the Dems so much that they get their “well deserved” tax breaks? How much does it take with 10-15 articles to undermine 100 door knocks and phone calls?

      • Khirad says:

        I would never inflate the effect they have, but it is not right to dismiss them outright, either. Even though only hardcore political junkies regularly log on to HP, they still drive a narrative which finds itself into the MSM and then filters down to the water cooler. When things are close -- yes, I may conceivably be able to hold them accountable to some extent for depressing the vote and costing a race or two by sapping enthusiasm from the base.

  4. AdLib says:

    “Gullibility is not Republican or Democratic, it is American.”

    As you mention P.T. Barnum, he conducted a circus meant to amuse and entertain the “rubes” off of whom he profited greatly.

    What is HP (and many other exploitative blogs) other than electronic circuses? Freak shows (trolls), animal and stunt acts (celebrity bloggers), tightrope walkers (Fineman and other legit journalists), exciting games of chance (fighting with trolls), winning Kewpie dolls (badges) and of course, The Bearded Lady (Arianna).

    “Step right up! See the most shocking, sexy and outrageous things anywhere on the internet! Only one thin click!”

    As the W.C. Fields movie was titled, “Never Give a Sucker an Even Break.”


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