Media Matters: Beck tells audience to ruin Thanksgiving dinner with misinformation about inflation

Media Matters

While advising his Fox News viewers to talk about inflation at their Thanksgiving dinners, Glenn Beck falsely claimed that the government removed food and energy prices from its measure of inflation to hide rising prices, that a survey showed economists are “worried” about inflation, and that Social Security recipients are not receiving a cost-of-living adjustment because the government “changed the calculation.”

Beck: Government removed “food and energy” from inflation estimate so that people wouldn’t “recognize how bad things actually were.” From the November 22 edition of Fox News’ Glenn Beck:

BECK: Then, you can say things like, “Did you know that Ben Bernanke is saying that we should be worrying about deflation?” Here he is:

BERNANKE : — rates of inflation, the constraint imposed by the zero lower bound on nominal interest rates is too tight. The short-term real interest rate is too high, given the state of the economy, and the risk of deflation is higher than desirable.

BECK: Ah, yeah. OK. George Soros says the same thing. He says in “spooky dude” voice, it is — “It is the U.S. that is not in the position of Europe’s heavily indebted countries, which must pay heavy premiums over the price at which Germany can borrow. Interest rates on U.S. government bonds have been falling and are near record lows, which means the financial markets anticipate deflation, not inflation, and I’m a spooky dude.”

All right. They don’t care. And you know what? George Soros and Ben Bernanke ain’t going out and doing the shopping. Mom and Grandma are. Your wife is.

And inflation isn’t even computed like it used to be computed. The government figured it out. The government realized that people could recognize how bad things actually were, so they changed how we calculated it. So, in other words, the TV could say, “There’s no inflation,” and you’d be going, “I’m broke. How’s that happening?”

Now, they calculate inflation without adding in the price of food and energy. Oh, well, other than those going up, we’re set.

Eric Bolling recently made similar claim on Beck’s show. During the November 18 edition of Beck’s Fox News show, Fox Business host Eric Bolling stated:

BOLLING: The government will tell you, people will tell that you we don’t even have inflation. The reason for that is because the government puts out an inflation number that removes food and energy. How convenient, right? Because the only two things that we really use every day — food and energy. So you remove that and things don’t look that [inaudible] bad.

Continue reading here…

Better Angels and Killer Angels – (Re- Post)

A century and a half after Abraham Lincoln was elected, some truths go marching on. Take heed, Obama.

11-27-2010 As we approach the last two full weeks of 111th Congress, I felt this article should be re-posted.

Newsweek’s article on President Obama’s recognition and frequent use of Abe Lincoln’s term “better angels” brings to light, the unnerving fact that Obama also needs to realize what Lincoln understood: that there may be better angels in the nature of some people, but there are others who are willing to weaken, even destroy a nation to serve their own self-righteous self-interest, and they will do it in the name of the Constitution…


President Barack Obama loves to quote the lyrical closing lines of Abraham Lincoln’s First Inaugural Address, calling on “the better angels of our nature” to overcome partisan hatreds and political divisions. Obama cited those words in his own inaugural proclamation and rested his hand on Lincoln’s Bible when he took the oath of office. He has come back to those angels again and again ever since. A search of Google and the White House Web site turns up half a dozen examples. He used the phrase to eulogize Ted Kennedy, to chide a would-be Quran burner in Florida, and to say goodbye to chief of staff Rahm Emanuel. Obama, it seems, sees better angels just about everywhere. Even as he traveled in India this week he talked about his efforts to live up to the example of Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jr., and, yes, Abraham Lincoln.

But in light of today’s real-world politics, Obama should think a little harder about the context in which Lincoln summoned those better angels on March 4, 1861. Led by South Carolina (now home to Sen. Jim DeMint), seven of 33 states had already seceded from the Union to form the Confederacy at that point. Only days before Lincoln took office, he had to sneak into Washington in the lonely hours before dawn because of an assassination plot. The month after his inauguration, the South fired on the federal garrison at Fort Sumter to begin the Civil War in earnest.

If, in the end, Lincoln did manage to hold the Union together, it was not because of the better angels of human nature, but because he finally found the killer angels among his generals who could, and did, and at enormous cost, crush the secessionists.

These basic facts about a moment of history that Obama obviously holds dear are worth going over again right now because, in fact, the secessionists of 1860 are the ideological forebears of the Tea Party movement today. No, the United States is not on the verge of another violent breakup, not close at all, even if Tea Party icons like Gov. Rick Perry in Texas or some of Sarah Palin’s friends and relatives in Alaska may toy with the notion of secession. But there is in American politics today a discourse of such cupidity, bigotry, and self-delusion about the role of government that it would have been familiar to anyone following the rhetoric of the Southern “fire-eaters” pushing the country toward a conflagration 150 years ago.     Continue reading…

Sarah Palin Responds To Korea Gaffe

Mrs. Palin makes a valid point about political gaffes when she points out that everyone makes them.  However, is it me or are most of her retorts toward the media, the POTUS and Mrs. Obama more piercing and odious than the average political response to something she has said or done?

Politics Daily

Even on Thanksgiving Day, Sarah Palin found time to lash out at her political foes — in this case the media for blowing out of proportion her gaffe on the Korean crisis.

In a Facebook posting, the combative Palin addressed a Thanksgiving message to “57 states” — mocking a mistake President Obama made in his 2008 campaign as a way of arguing that the news uses a double standard. “If you can’t remember hearing about them [Obama slip-ups), that’s because for the most part the media didn’t consider them newsworthy,” she wrote, according to ABC News. “I have no complaint about that. Everybody makes the occasional verbal gaffe — even news anchors.”

Palin drew ridicule earlier this week when she said in a radio interview with Glenn Beck, “We gotta stand with our North Korean allies” during a discussion about the deadly attack by the North on a South Korean island. Beck quickly corrected her and she replied, “We’re bound by prudence to stand with our South Korean allies, yes.” Roughly 24 hours after reports of the incident, Palin was criticizing the Obama team’s response to the attack. “We’re not having a lot of faith that the White House is going to come out with a strong enough policy to sanction what it is that North Korea is going to do.”

Of the media reports that followed her little mix-up, she said, “Obviously, I would have been even more impressed if the media showed some consistency on this issue. Unfortunately, it seems they couldn’t resist the temptation to turn a simple one word slip-of-the-tongue of mine into a major political headline.” And for her part, Palin couldn’t resist firing back.

The 2008 Republican vice presidential candidate is a woman on the move. On Saturday, she is due in Iowa for a book signing at a Borders in West Des Moines for “America by Heart: Reflections on Family, Faith and Flag.” Iowa is the site of the first 2012 Republican presidential contest — and Palin says she’s considering a national candidacy. Palin’s camp said the book-signing events are “not political in any way.”

Former Republican Sen. Warns GOP May ‘Have Gone So Far Overboard That We Are Beyond Redemption’

Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Ri...
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As many have claimed over and over, “This current Republican Party is not your father or grandfather’s Republican Part.”   The current far-right GOP make Nixon, Reagan, Bush 41 and 43 look like flaming liberals.

Former Republican Senator Sen. John Danforth of Missouri took issue with the current GOP for targeting Sen. Richard Lugar who is  taking issue with his party for blocking the ratification of the New START treaty.

Think Progress

In an age when far-right tea party activists have taken over the Republican Party and demanded lockstep allegiance, Sen. Richard Lugar (R-IN) has been one of the few GOP lawmakers to step out of line. In particular, Lugar, the ranking GOP member on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, has blasted his own party for relentlessly blocking ratification of the New START nuclear arms treaty with Russia for petty political reasons, calling on his fellow GOP senators to “do your duty for your country” and complete the pact.

Not surprisingly, this insubordination has earned Lugar significant scorn within the Republican base, which now seems to value blind obedience over principled independent decision-making. In a New York Times profile of Lugar published today, former GOP Sen. John Danforth feared that the backlash against Lugar from his own party signals that the GOP has gone “far overboard” with no hope of turning back:

“If Dick Lugar,” said John C. Danforth, a former Republican senator from Missouri, “having served five terms in the U.S. Senate and being the most respected person in the Senate and the leading authority on foreign policy, is seriously challenged by anybody in the Republican Party, we have gone so far overboard that we are beyond redemption.”

Mr. Danforth, who was first elected the same year as Mr. Lugar, added, “I’m glad Lugar’s there and I’m not.”

Danforth’s fears are not unfounded. Lugar, who is up for reelection in 2012, has already been targeted by tea party groups. “If I was Dick Lugar, I would certainly expect a challenge,” noted veteran political analyst Stuart Rothenberg. As Diane Hubbard, a spokeswoman for the Indianapolis Tea Party, told the Times, removing Lugar “will be a difficult challenge. But we do believe it’s doable, and we think the climate is right for it and we believe it is a must.”

Indeed, asked about a potential tea party challenge motivated by his breaks with the GOP on START and other issues, Lugar suggested the party has drifted to the right while he has stayed steady, saying, “These are just areas where I’ve had stances for a long time.”