In the hours since embattled Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich outfoxed his Democratic rivals (no kidding!) by appointing an African-American to the US Senate, we've seen many Antique Media references to Blago and his supporters having played "the race card".
Coming after a week-long holiday smear campaign orchestrated by these very operatives against conservatives and Republicans over a year-old parody song created for the Rush Limbaugh Show, the accusations are rich indeed.
Let's get this straight: when activists to the left of Obama (including the only man to have defeated Barack in an election contest, Democratic Rep Bobby Rush) plead for the acceptance of their Senate appointee, that's racist, because it appears based primarily on the ethnicity of former Illinois Attorney General Roland Burris.
Good thing race was never a factor in Obama's victory! Luckily, guilt-ridden white liberal boomers had nothing to do with it.
The result: Barack Obama's (largely white) supporters are now the arbiters of all things racial.
Here's a clip of the press conference, which has Obamists in a tizzy:
This 'race card' is clearly marked. You'd never get away with that in Vegas!
Clearly, all of this is a distraction designed to take some of the heat off of the Dem's massive PR bungling on a number of open US Senate seats, including New York's. From today's Wall Street Journal:
So to recap all of this change you can believe in: A Kennedy and Cuomo are competing to succeed a Clinton in New York; the skids are greased for a Biden to replace a Biden in Delaware; one Salazar might replace another in Colorado; and a Governor charged with political corruption in Illinois wants one of his cronies to succeed the President-elect. Let's just say we're looking forward to 2009.
At the same time, the ongoing dishonesty at the far-left Los Angeles Times continues to know no boundaries, with Lisa Richardson attacking Republicans over the Limbaugh parody while failing to mention that it was based on a column that ran in her own paper! Take a look:
It's a given that Republicans are done trying to appeal to black voters, but are they really ready to give up everyone else who isn't white? Because if not, here's the thing: it’s not much of a stretch for Latinos and Asians -- who also voted overwhelmingly for Obama -- to imagine how a president-elect of their ethnicity also could be the target of such lighthearted Republican fun. "Mike the Magic Jap” and “Maria the Magic Mexican” probably wouldn't go over that well either.
Remember, this manufactured controversy was cooked up by the left because a little-known GOP chairmanship candidate distributed a song recorded 18 months ago and dismissed even by Obama himself at the time. But you won't see the dying Times come clean about any of that.
Don't be fooled by this trickery: Obamist Democrats are scrambling to contain the damage caused by the scandals over these open Senate seats. Resorting to attacking others, even sacrificing other liberals if necessary, is simply par for the course.
Following a longstanding tradition, the mainstream media has once again used Rush Limbaugh's temporary absence from the airwaves to smear conservatives. It's the oldest trick in their book: take cheap shots when El Rushbo isn't there to fight back.
If you think the timing of this is coincidental, you don't know our Old Media friends.
But the latest "controversy", used to attack the Republican Party, is entirely manufactured. Here, the distribution of a Limbaugh parody song recorded by Paul Shanklin in 2007 has landed a little-known, dark-horse GOP chairmanship candidate in "hot water", at least as the left would have us believe.
But we've been down this road before: when the spoof was created in May of last year, even Obama himself brushed it off. Suddenly, however, now that it can provide political ammo, it has been resurrected.
Before last week, Chip Saltsman was unknown even to many conservative activists, but since then, his name has been plastered all over the left side of the Internet (and even Fox News!) as the former Tennessee party chairman and Mike Huckabee presidential campaign manager is held up as an example of the "racist" right:
The chairman of the Republican National Committee said Saturday he was "shocked and appalled" that one of his potential successors had sent committee members a CD this Christmas featuring a 2007 parody song called "Barack the Magic Negro."
In spite of RNC Chairman Robert M. "Mike" Duncan's sharply negative reaction, former Tennessee GOP leader Chip Saltsman said that party leaders should stand up to criticism over distributing a CD with the song. He earlier defended the tune as one of several "lighthearted political parodies" that have aired on Rush Limbaugh's radio show.
Saltsman, who managed former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee's presidential campaign, is seeking the RNC chairmanship. During the presidential campaign, GOP officials denounced efforts by those in the party who criticized or mocked Democratic nominee Barack Obama along racial lines. Obama was vying to be the nation's first black president.
A spokesman for Obama, now the president-elect, declined to comment on the matter.
The ditty by conservative comedian Paul Shanklin refers to a March 2007 opinion piece in the Los Angeles Times by David Ehrenstein headlined "Obama the 'Magic Negro.'" In the article, Ehrenstein argued that voting for Obama helped white voters alleviate guilt over racial wrongs in the past.
Shanklin's parody is sung to the music of "Puff, the Magic Dragon." Among other Shanklin tunes on the 41-track CD that Saltsman sent with a Christmas message: "I Can Talk Like a Coal Miner's Daughter," "Love Client #9" and "Down on the Farm with Al Gore."
But as is made clear in the above story from Fox News, the Republican Party is more interested in launching into an apology tour rather than explain why the parody was created for Limbaugh's show in 2007. Their reaction underscores the toothless nature of today's GOP.
Here, Michelle Malkin calls the party's official reaction "gag-worthy".
Now, even parody creator Shanklin has felt compelled to weigh in on the flap, according to UPI:
"They are trying to paint Chip as some kind of racist -- which he's not," Shanklin told the newspaper. "Whether he should have sent it out, I'll let history decide. Is it provocative? Well, most political satire is. What I do for a living is major league provocative."
Saltsman has drawn fire from some GOP leaders for including the song in materials sent out to promote his bid for the party's chairmanship.
The Commercial Appeal said that in the 2007 song, Shanklin poses as the Rev. Al Sharpton. One refrain of the song, sung to the tune of "Puff the Magic Dragon," goes: "Barack the Magic Negro made guilty whites feel good/They'll vote for him and not for me/Cause he's not from the 'hood."
More disturbingly, even some conservatives seemingly unfamiliar with the parody's context have fallen prey to the smear campaign. At National Review Online's Campaign Spot, Jim Geraghty sides with critics:
The counterargument rolled out by Saltsman — it’s a satire — seems insufficient to the moment.
If you want to win over African-American voters to your party, perhaps the first step is to figure out why the title “Barack the Magic Negro” would offend them. Few would be offended by a song called “Barack the Magic Chicagoan” or “Barack the Magic Politician”; the use of the term “negro” specifically identifies him by his skin color, which makes it appear that his skin color is what’s being held up for ridicule, not the perception that he’s magical. It's easy to see a song that appears to be mocking someone for his skin color as inconsistent with judging people by the content of their character.
If you’re going to send a gift to all RNC members, that gift is going to say a lot about you. I had said about Katon Dawson that the measure of a man is more than his country club membership; the measure of Chip Saltsman is a lot more than a song on a CD he sent as a Christmas gift. But this is an entirely unforced error, giving those who wish to portray the GOP as racially insensitive a cheap and easy example to add to their arsenal.
Where was all this outrage over racism when the Democrats used despicable racial stereotypes (just as Democrats did during the days of slavery and Jim Crow) to slur black professionals, such as Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, former Secretary of State Colin Powell and former Maryland Lt. Governor Michael Steele?
Brazenly, on the left-wing Internet website called "The News Blog," Democrats posted a doctored photograph of Steele, depicting him as a "Simple Sambo."
Cartoonist Jeff Danziger depicted Rice as an ignorant, barefoot "mammy," reminiscent of the stereotyped black woman in the movie Gone with the Wind who remarked: "I don't know nothin' 'bout birthin' no babies." Black comedian Harry Belafonte and Rev. Al Sharpton publicly denounced Powell as a "House Negro." NAACP Chairman Julian Bond equated the Republican Party with the Nazi Party and called Rice and Powell "tokens."
The liberal media showed not a hint of concern about racial insensitivity when Obama campaigned for white Democrat Benjamin L. Cardin and against Michael Steele during the 2006 Maryland senate race, not long after Obama issued a letter of support for the re-election of white Democrat and former Ku Klux Klansman Robert Byrd.
Not one word of angst was uttered by the liberal press when a black Democrat pundit on national television called black Democrat Juan Williams a "Happy Negro." What offense did Williams commit that resulted in such a vicious racial slur? He had the temerity to defy the Democratic Party's "thought police" and wrote a book called "Enough: The Phony Leaders, Dead-end Movements and Culture of Failure That Are Undermining Black America." His book exposes how the failed socialist polices of the Democrats who have been running black communities for the past 40 years have turned those communities into economic and social wastelands.
What the Obamist media isn't mentioning is that two of the leading candidates for the GOP chairmanship are African-American and one of them, Ken Blackwell, is defending his rival:
"Unfortunately, there is hypersensitivity in the press regarding matters of race. This is in large measure due to President-Elect Obama being the first African-American elected president," said Blackwell, who would be the first black RNC chairman, in a statement forwarded to Politico by an aide. "I don't think any of the concerns that have been expressed in the media about any of the other candidates for RNC chairman should disqualify them. When looked at in the proper context, these concerns are minimal. All of my competitors for this leadership post are fine people."
Remember: timing is everything, especially in politics. This manufactured controversy has intentionally been pumped up during a time when Rush Limbaugh is away from the microphone. That's because it's much easier to smear the right when talk's titan is not there to fight back.
He can no more speak for the network than Al Franken, Janeane Garofalo, Jerry Springer or any of the others who left Air America long ago. Because the piece doesn't make it clear that Sinton is no longer part of the network's management team, the resulting confusion seems understandable:
As the founding president of Air America Radio, I believe that for the last eight years Rush Limbaugh and his ilk have been cheerleaders for everything wrong with our economic, foreign and domestic policies. But when it comes to the Fairness Doctrine, I couldn't agree with them more. The Fairness Doctrine is an anachronistic policy that, with the abundance of choices on radio today, is entirely unnecessary.
Despite the confusion, Sinton does make a number of great points until jumping the shark here:
So why didn't liberal talk radio flourish as well? There are several reasons, none of which has to do with a lack of talent. Bill Maher, Al Franken, Stephanie Miller, David Bender, Janeane Garofalo, Jon Stewart and Rachel Maddow all have the chops.
First, boring hosts made the occasional, unsuccessful foray (sorry, Mario Cuomo). Second, some talented lefties like Mike Malloy were cast into the abyss of right-wing talk radio where they were completely out of place. (Radio is a mood servicing drug; format purity rules.)
Finally, most broadcast owners are conservative. Programs like Rush's have made them rich, so the last thing they want is to mess with success, particularly if it entails airing opinions they don't share. Trust me, it took us years to get them to play rock 'n' roll.
Where do we begin picking apart this mess? First, when did Maher and Stewart host liberal radio talk shows? We must have missed them. The others on Sinton's list were given excellent opportunities by Clear Channel to attract audiences in major cities across America, but failed.
Because it could lead to opponents letting down their guard at a key time, the idea that many now wrongly believe conservatives and liberals alike are united against broadcast censorship is dangerous and must quickly be corrected.
Joe Scarborough Thinks He Knows What's Wrong With Talk Radio
MORE CLUELESS JOE
MSNBC Host Uses Left's Old 'Rush Clones' Talking Points
Isn't it time for 'Morning Joe' Scarborough's mouth to take an extended holiday break? After yet another ridiculous outburst, your Radio Equalizer wonders why Joe doesn't seem to know when to quit while he's behind.
A decade ago, this fallacy was utilized by left-leaning radio managers as an excuse not to hire successful conservative hosts from other stations and markets. Any right-leaning talker was then cast as a "Rush clone" who took his or her arguments straight from the GOP playbook.
With more stations converting to news-talk formats — perhaps with the hope that live talk cannot be displaced by an iPod the way music can be — the middle tier is where most of the movement is. The conservative commentator Monica Crowley is entering weekday syndication through the Talk Radio Network. The CNN anchor Lou Dobbs is signing new affiliates for a three-hour afternoon show. And Mr. Scarborough, the host of MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” is hosting a radio version on WABC in New York. ABC Radio plans to syndicate it next year, beginning in Los Angeles at KABC.
Mr. Scarborough, the former Republican congressman, did not enjoy his brief stint with Westwood One in 2005. But his MSNBC morning program, which replaced the TV simulcast of “Imus in the Morning” when Don Imus was fired for using racially charged language in 2007, resembles a radio show and attracted interest from radio networks earlier in the year. Mr. Scarborough expects his program to provide more political balance than some others.
“We have been in an era where you’ve had Rush Limbaugh, followed by a lot of conservative talk show hosts that lacked his talent and sense of humor,” Mr. Scarborough said. “They decided that if they just read Republican talking points, they’d get a big audience. I think that world is coming to an end. You’re going to have to be entertaining like Limbaugh, but also allow people of all political stripes on the show.”
Time will tell whether Mr. Scarborough and his co-host, Mika Brzezinski, can cross over to radio. “So far, I don’t think we’ve seen any TV personalities have success” on radio stations, Ms. Mijatovic said, “only the vice versa.” Indeed, two of the newest stars of TV talk, Mr. Beck, who left CNN for Fox News, and the MSNBC host Rachel Maddow, emerged after years on the radio.
So there you have it: despite having failed at syndicated talk radio once before, Joe Scarborough believes he's the answer to its "problems". This at a time when the medium is more successful than ever and poised to explode in popularity under the Obamist Regime.
Even more ridiculous, Joe sees a need for liberal guests (and a lefty co-host, of course) as the best way to "fix" talk radio. No doubt that means it's time to do the same thing at Air America, right?
'Progressives' Use Talk Radio, Blogs To Express Obama Concerns
Beginning To Feel Burned By Obama, Lefties Fight Back
Feeling burned both by the incoming president's cabinet choices and his selection of Pastor Rick Warren to deliver the inaugural invocation, angry Barack Obama supporters are beginning to fight back.
Using talk radio and the blogosphere, a group of disaffected Barack-backers affiliated with The Phoenix, a chain of politically "progressive" alternative newsweeklies based in Boston, Providence and Portland have created Take Back Barack, a site critical of his moves.
Considering how vehemently these publications supported the former Illinois senator, this represents an abrupt turn of events coming rather soon after November's election.
Already, Take Back Barack's contributors have done radio interviews, including a scheduled appearance on the syndicated Phil Hendrie Show early Saturday morning.
--Dem Hilda Solis for SecLabor. She's a strong pro-labor person, who is being touted as pro-union, though her remarks upon her appointment had almost nothing to say about unions. Sure, she said she would "work to strengthen" them, but the examples she gave - and her major policy accomplishment in California of increasing the minimum wage - were very much non-union in nature. (That is, while they help union workers, they advance the interests of non-union workers at the same time.)
--GOPer Ray LaHood for SecTransportation. He's an anti-abortion guy - though that's perhaps less important in a transportation official than one in, say, public health. His record on oil and transportation are mixed. He supported the auto bailout last week, and voted to end the moratorium on offshore drilling. But he also voted to make OPEC illegal, and opposed oil and gas subsidies for exploration.
--Dem Karen Mills (a Mainer!) to head the Small Business Administration. She's been touted as "a venture-capital expert," though what her firm does is anything but clear. Also uncertain is how she'll be able to handle the SBA's chief task - loaning money to businesses, and offering loan guarantees, in this credit market. And what she'll do to help the millions of Americans who run "microbusinesses" remains to be seen. (Disclosure: I'm an NASE member.)
--Dem Ron Kirk as US trade representative. Another Clintonite and former DC lobbyist, Kirk is a Southerner (of sorts - he's from Texas) who has supported NAFTA but opposed the "Fast Track" system. How much clout he will wield appears to be in question - a previous candidate for the job declined it because he feared trade would be too low a priority for Obama. (Interestingly, Kirk was a finalist to be SecTrans, so maybe this is a second-choice situation for him, too.)
RUSH: So, Rick Warren is going to do the prayer at The Messiah's inauguration, and of course gay groups are livid, I mean they're climbing the walls because Rick Warren was for Prop 8, he's opposed to gay marriage. Gay groups feel totally let down by Barack Obama. Again, I want to caution all of you extreme leftist groups like militant leftist gays and all of you that are worried about Obama's cabinet, like Bob Gates over at the Pentagon is going to stay on, Ray LaHood, a Republican from Illinois, has been named transportation secretary. You guys just calm down.
This is a brilliant political stroke by Obama. He knows that he embarrassed himself profoundly on the pro-life question with Rick Warren. This is an attempt by Obama, just as Clinton did it, to make it look like he is not what he is. He is not the radical extremist that we know he is.
This is all just public relations right now. This is all just for show. You leftists are going to be happier than you know. It's like the education secretary, this Arne Duncan, the guy that ran the Chicago schools. I said yesterday, he's a figurehead. Everybody that has the guts to understand this knows full well that William Ayers is going to be discussing education policy with Barack Obama, and Arne Duncan is up there as a figurehead.
There's a story out today that basically says that Arne Duncan has even got ties to the Annenberg Challenge, which is where Obama and William Ayers did their education work. You're going to get what you want. You're going to get a massive stimulus package; you're going to get massive growth of government. Would you just stop complaining. It is unbecoming of you leftists to be so panicked here. Just pay attention to the substance and forget the PR. You're going to be cool.
After infiltrating anAyers speech in November, your Radio Equalizer couldn't agree more. The very nature of the event, held in DC, struck yours truly as odd: it was set up to introduce Obama's supporters to the radical terrorist's early childhood education philosophies. If he isn't expected to have a role in shaping Barack's policies, then what was the point?
Nonetheless, considering that he has yet to take office, it's surprisingly early for Obama supporters to be having second thoughts. But given the vague nature of his campaign, disappointment was inevitable.
While your Radio Equalizer is certainly sorry to hear about this unfortunate incident, the reality is that the six dollars lost to this creep outside an upscale hotel has bought her victim millions in free publicity.
And that's where the affair transcends standard police blotter coverage in the back of a newspaper (if it would even rate that these days) and moves into mainstream media Goofyville.
Apparently, run-of-the-mill muggings are for the little people, not the liberal media elite, which explains the stunned reaction we've seen from newspapers, television and certain blogs.
There's no indication a weapon was used, leading Gawker to call the perp "an over-agressive beggar."
Whether Mika herself wanted the incident splashed all over the place isn't clear, especially given the way it was Scarborough who pressed the matter on today's Morning Joe:
In the clip, Mika rolls her eyes and seems uncomfortable with the topic, but Joe doesn't let up. Was he shamelessly exploiting the situation for publicity? Was she in on it, or truly unhappy with the conversation?
Finally, do establishment liberals avoid discussing their muggings in polite society?
Mika Brzezinski of MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” was mugged Thursday morning as she waited for a hired car to pick her up at a Washington hotel.
“Feel great!!” she e-mailed after appearing on the air.
Brzezinski told “Morning Joe” viewers that the assailant asked for $20 and she gave him what she had — $6.
When asked what she’d learned, she quipped: “Give the money. Give the money.”
Her co-host, Joe Scarborough, agreed that the lesson was “to hand the money over.”
Peggy Noonan of The Wall Street Journal said on-air that Brezezinski has survived “a surprising moment in the morning with great dignity and style and humor.”
For his part, Rush Limbaugh added a number of funny observations to the mix during today's show:
Now, ladies and gentlemen, as you know, I have a unique take on most things that happen. To me, the most interesting aspect of this is not what so many people are e-mailing me about, and that is, "Will she now become conservative," because, you know, the old cliche is a conservative is a liberal who has been mugged, and she got mugged. She got held up for six bucks. The mugger, though, working cheap, accepted six bucks after demanding $20. What happened to Mika Brzezinski makes the case for tax cuts. She works in the Drive-By Media. She works in television. It's as though she's got nothing left after giving Bernie Madoff the money. She only has six bucks to give the man who is down on his luck. We have to understand who muggers are. Muggers are the salt of the earth; they're the backbone of America. They just have been placed in this current circumstance because of the evils of the Bush administration and supply side trickle-down economics. These are good people. They have been forced into thuggery, muggery, and holdups in order to survive.
What happened to Mika Brzezinski is exactly why we need permanent, across-the-board tax cuts. If we cannot keep more of our own money, muggers are going to have to work over time. This guy could have gotten everything he wanted from one victim, but because Mika Brzezinski only had a measly six bucks, he had to probably go hold up a couple or three more people to make his take.
That puts that many more people in danger, and, of course, the mugger risks getting caught with each attempt here at fleecing somebody. He could end up in jail as well. I mean, how is it that Drive-By infobabe on the road doesn't have enough money to help out a fellow citizen who's down on his luck. This country is better than that. When we get held up, we should have more than six bucks to give the muggers. You know what the rich are told, the rich are told to walk around with a significant amount of cash because if you do get held up and you got a couple, $300 bucks, then your odds of surviving the mugging are greater than if you don't have anything.
So the rich are advised by their security personnel to carry significant amounts of cash. How is it you're on the road and you've only got six bucks and you work in the Drive-By Media, you work for NBC Universal?
The mugger was a worker, by the way. He was out working. These are tough economic times. He probably lost his job at an auto plant or some such thing. Maybe he used to work at Wall Street, at a bank, who knows. Probably not paying his mortgage, still has his house, but he needs food. And to collect a measly six bucks from a Drive-By infobabe? That embarrasses me as an American, that somebody as accomplished and achieved as Mika Brzezinski only had six dollars. Can you imagine taking a road trip, folks, and only having six dollars? Remember, this happened before six o'clock in the morning. This mugger was up early. This mugger was a worker. He was up early working the streets. Somebody might want to hire this guy. This guy is loaded with initiative. This guy obviously has ambition.
If Mika just had a measly 20 dollars on her, she gives the mugger the money and she can feel good about it. Now she has to carry the shame of only having six dollars with her and shorting this hard-pressed working American 14 bucks. This just proves to me, folks, we need a tax holiday.
While no one quite knows what is motivating Joe & Mika to blab about this all over town, the results are clear: it's a publicity bonanza for this cable duo as they attempt to survive in the far more difficult world of talk radio.
Proving that the radio industry absolutely never learns from its past mistakes, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani may be poised to sign a syndicated talk radio deal.
On Wednesday, reports surfaced in several places, including the New York Post, that the onetime presidential candidate was in talks with Westwood One, a supplier of talk radio programming. If a deal is finalized, he would take over for Bill O'Reilly once his show ends early in the new year.
EVERYONE knows Bill O'Reilly is quitting his radio show to concentrate on his Fox News TV program. Now, Page Six has learned the leading candidate to succeed him is Rudy Giuliani (above). Westwood One, which syndicates the O'Reilly show, is negotiating with the former mayor. Giuliani, who doesn't suffer fools gladly, famously ridiculed a ferret owner on the radio in 1999, calling him "deranged." Some wonder if Rudy could sit for three hours a day chitchatting about politics. The other question is how it might affect his possible gubernatorial run in 2010. Giuliani's office did not return calls.
Unfortunately for both Rudy and Westwood One, however, there are several potential snags:
Like other celebrity "hosts" who decide to play radio for fun and profit, Rudy has absolutely no experience outside of sitting in a studio as a guest. Forced to answer unpleasant questions that he's spent a career ducking, Giuliani would face heat unlike anything before.
Because hosting talk radio programs involves stating opinions on issues, Rudy's show would provide a great deal of potential opposition material should he make an expected run for New York governor in 2010. Talk radio and elective office are not compatible pursuits.
As he's developed a reputation as a relatively liberal Republican, there's no natural audience constituency for Rudy. Generating ratings and revenue would be especially challenging without a dedicated base of fans.
His potential employer, Westwood One, is nearly broke. Recently delisted by the New York Stock Exchange, the onetime CBS subsidiary now trades on the pink sheets (OTC:WWON) as a penny stock. The company has been given up for dead by Wall Street.
If Rudy Radio is just a temporary stop on the way to gubernatorial campaigning, there's little reason for affiliates and listeners to get excited about the show.
And finally, rival network Fox News Radio has already offered O'Reilly radio affiliates a new John Gibson radio show that will immediately slide into that time slot. Gibson is a known quantity in broadcasting and far more likely to generate support from station owners.
If you've ever wondered how companies end up with shares trading at four cents, it's a result of coming up with boneheaded ideas such as this one.
Now, we can add another Dem's name to the list: far-left Representative Anna Eshoo (D-CA), who represents an oddly-shaped district covering portions of the San Francisco and Monterey Bay Areas.
Not content to merely silence Rush Limbaugh, however, Eshoo would take her crusade to cable and satellite broadcasts as well. Could they shut down the Fox News Channel as well as commercial talk radio? How about XM - Sirius?
Anna Hush-You would tackle them all in a way that would make Vladimir, Hugo and Fidel proud, not to mention her new friend in the White House.
“The so-called ‘Fairness Doctrine’ would restrict free speech on the public airwaves, stifling dissent at a time when an open national dialogue about our country’s future is essential," said Boehner in an e-mailed statement Tuesday a copy of which was supplied to B&C.
"The American people do not believe the federal government should be in the business of dictating or restricting the content of political speech. I’m troubled by Rep. Eshoo’s comments, and my hope is that President-elect Obama will speak out against efforts by members of his party to use their majority power to limit free speech and dissent.”
Boehner was responding to an interview Monday in which Eshoo, a member of the House Energy & Commerce Committee whose chair will be fellow Californian Herny Waxman, told the paper: "I’ll work on bringing it back. I still believe in it,” and adding that she would want it to apply to cable and satellite rather than just radio and TV.
Wow! Talk about over the edge. Will Eshoo next institute the "Fairness Doctrine" to private conversations? Talk about not being an advocate of free speech. Fortunately, some Republicans are starting to wake up from their long slumber...
Yes, it's nice to see Republicans once again willing to take a stand on a key issue, but what's more important is that free-speech proponents now have more than enough evidence to use against those who still foolishly claim Democrats aren't planning a crackdown against talk radio. At least a half-dozen elected members of Congress are now on record as saying they support this type of proposal.
As we're discovering, almost the entire economy is the moral equivalent of a Ponzi scheme.
Hyperbole? Well, let's see:
While the operating details may be different... somewhat anyway...it's undeniable that much of our financial and industrial structure is a Pyramid based on a phantom foundation.
It has been constructed by opportunists who were such con artists they didn't care whether it ultimately imploded, as long as they got theirs.
Or so inept they had no business around the building.
Or worst, the people who adopted the "Get along-go along" approach to success...never going against the grain, no matter what.
Those may be the most corrupt of all, since their expedient "make no waves" mentality was at the very least amoral, which is another way of saying immoral.
By the way, that would include the politicians who looked the other way so they could either get the crumbs in the form of campaign contributions, or because raising a stink was simply too much of a hassle.
Now that the chickens have come home to roost the home has caved in.
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Investors scrambled to assess potential losses from an alleged $50 billion fraud by Bernard Madoff, a day after the arrest of the prominent Wall Street trader.
Prosecutors and regulators accused the 70-year-old, who was chairman of the Nasdaq Stock Market in the early 1990s, of masterminding a fraud of epic proportions through his investment advisory business, which managed at least one hedge fund.
Hundreds of people, investing with him through the firm's clients, entrusted Madoff with billions of dollars, industry experts said.
"Madoff's investors included captains of industry, corporations -- some of which are publicly traded -- that used Madoff almost as a high-yielding cash management account, endowments, universities, foundations and, importantly, many high-profile funds of funds," said Douglas Kass, who heads hedge fund Seabreeze Partners Management.
"It appears that at least $15 billion of wealth, much of which was concentrated in southern Florida and New York City, has gone to 'money heaven,'" he said.
And yet, the facts are right there for all to see: over the past decade, Madoff has consistently been a major Democratic Party contributor.
According to NewsMeat and OpenSecrets, two sites that track political contributions, Madoff gave a total of $100,000 to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee betweeen 2005 and 2008.
In addition, he backed a variety of Democratic candidates, including Hillary Clinton, Senator Frank Lautenberg of New Jersey, New York Senator Chucky Schumer, embattled New York City Congressman Charles Rangel, Massachusetts Rep Ed Markey and many others.
During the 1990s, Madoff also gave money to Republicans, but in recent years, almost all of the recipients have been liberal Democrats.
Bernard Madoff, the Wall Street bigwig arrested Thursday on an alleged massive securities fraud prosecutors call a "Ponzi scheme" was a major Democratic donor.
For instance, in the most recent election cycle, according to OpenSecrets.org, he contributed $50,000 in two $25,000 donations to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee chaired by Sen. Charles Schumer, the New York Democrat.
He also often frequent contributions over the years to New York area Democrats, including Sens. Hillary Clinton and Frank Lautenberg. Expect to hear Republican demands that Democrats return the money.
Yes, that might be nice, but so far at least, we've seen no objection from the GOP. Beyond that, a smattering of blogs have made the connection between Madoff's funny money and his support for Dems, but others seem unaware.
RUSH: Have you heard about this guy in New York that was running this $50 billion Ponzi scheme? He was the former head of NASDAQ. Folks, do you know how many charlatan cheats there are in the financial asset management industry?
It's a crapshoot. This is why I didn't stay in it very long. I never did, instinctively, understand why I should give people who had less money than I have my money to manage. If they were so smart at it, they'd have more than I do. If they ever get hold of Social Security, it could be trouble. This guy was running a Ponzi scheme. He had $50 billion, he said, of managed assets, and he didn't have that much. What he was doing is taking the investments he got to pay previous investors, and it finally caught up with him, and he's admitted it -- and a lot of his clients live here, in Palm Beach, where I live! This stuff can happen to anybody.
There really is no doubt that anybody could be suckered by this kind of sophisticated huckster.
Though it will barely help those who have lost everything they had in this scheme, Democrats who benefited from funds sent by Madoff should be compelled to return the money at once. In addition, the lack of mainstream media coverage of this key point once again underscores their partisan nature.