Republicans never expected to get a fair shake in the Big Three networks´ coverage of the 16-day government shutdown, but the final tally of stories blaming the GOP is stunning: 41 stories blamed Republicans and zero blamed Democrats. Nightly, 20 million Americans heard “a version of the shutdown story that could easily have emanated from Barack Obama´s own White House,” said the new report from the Media Research Center. The report, provided to Secrets, found that a total of 41 stories blamed Republicans for the shutdown. None blamed the Democrats. Another 17 blamed both sides. In addition, those interviewed by
Food stamps are the most inefficient, vastly expanding social welfare program in the country, according to a new study. Forty-seven million people participate in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), commonly known as food stamps, and costs have increased over 358 percent since 2000. The increase in recent years cannot be attributed to the economic recession, according to Michael Tanner, a senior fellow at the Cato Institute, but lax eligibility requirements and an aggressive campaign by governments to boost their rolls. “This program has expanded rapidly over the last decade in a way that is not justified by the recession that we went
Now that the U.S. government is back in business, it means the feast is over for White House squirrels who have overrun the first lady´s garden. When the government shutdown more than two weeks ago, most White House gardeners were furloughed and those that were allowed to stay on were only allowed to water the plants. Triming, fetrilizing, transplanting, mowing and harvesting were all off limits. Without any human intervention, the White House squirrels went to town on the Obama´s prized organic garden, muching on tomatoes and the rest of the produce just coming into harvest. ´The bushy-tailed residents are feasting on
The 16-day government shutdown is officially over, and Vice President Joe Biden was busy making the rounds Wednesday morning, welcoming federal workers back to work. And he did it with food, the ultimate peace offering/good gesture/way to fix almost anything. Biden stopped at the Environmental Protection Agency with multiple containers of muffins. And not just any muffins ... they´re mini. In the photo above, Biden is seen carrying the muffins while excited onlookers take pictures, clap and cheer. The woman in the red suit looks like she may be the happiest woman alive and is probably hoping those muffins are
There’s no actual debt ceiling right now. The fiscal deal passed by Congress on Wednesday evening to re-open the government and get around the $16.4 trillion limit on borrowing doesn’t actually increase the debt limit. It just temporarily suspends enforcement of it. That means Americans have no idea how much debt their government is going to rack up between now and February 7, when the limits are supposed to go back into place and will have to be raised. There is no dollar amount set for how much debt the government can accumulate between now and then. The suspension strategy was employed first
President Obama’s spokesman defended his boss on Thursday for chiding Republicans over the debt ceiling and shutdown fight. White House press secretary Jay Carney said many people, including Republicans, think the GOP did the wrong thing by pressing for the defunding of ObamaCare in the fight over funding the government. He said he had no doubt some Republicans “think they did the right thing” and take issue with Obama’s criticism. “But I think many, many others agree that we need to work together to find common ground,” Carney said at his daily briefing. Carney addded that Republican leaders themselves had
At one of the darkest moments of the government shutdown, with markets dipping and both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue hurling icy recriminations, Maine Republican Susan Collins went to the Senate floor to do two things that none of her colleagues had yet attempted. She refrained from partisan blame and proposed a plan to end the crisis. “I ask my Democratic and Republican colleagues to come together,” Collins said on Oct. 8. “We can do it. We can legislate responsibly and in good faith.” Senate Appropriations Committee chair Barbara Mikulski, a Maryland Democrat, happened to be standing nearby, and she soon picked
Miami - Salsa overtaking ketchup as America´s No. 1 condiment was just the start. These days, tortillas outsell burger and hot dog buns; sales of tortilla chips trump potato chips; and tacos and burritos have become so ubiquitously "American," most people don´t even consider them ethnic. Welcome to the taste of American food in 2013. As immigrant and minority populations rewrite American demographics, the nation´s collective menu is reflecting this flux, as it always has. And it goes beyond the mainstreaming of once-esoteric ethnic ingredients, something we´ve seen with everything from soy sauce to jalapenos. This is a rewrite of the American menu at the
HAIFA, Israel – Bird-brained terrorists in Lebanon have taken a suspected Israeli spy into custody – an eagle that was outfitted with a transmitter that allowed conservationists to study the raptor’s migratory patterns. In the latest case of Muslim militants seeing a secret agent with wings and a beak, Iranian-backed Hezbollah forces are keeping the eagle under lock and key after it was found by hunters near the town of Ashkout, northeast of Beirut. The bird had a ring around its leg that bore the name ‘Tel Aviv University,’ written in English, as well as a receiver device attached, according to
We in the media — especially those working event broadcasts — have a horrible habit of blindly or wishfully reporting great achievers are additionally blessed: They’re great humans. Among many others, we did it with Tiger Woods and Lance Armstrong. Last year, we began to do it with Adrian Peterson, before, and then after, he was selected the NFL’s MVP. With every big game — 2,037 running yards worth — the media bloated his profile: There runs Superman, a super guy, too.
Grover Norquist isn’t happy with the Defunders. The Americans for Tax Reform president told reporters today that they have a lot of apologies to make and bridges to re-build. “It’d be a good idea if they stopped referring to other Republicans as Hitler appeasers because they opposed the strategy they put forward which failed,” Norquist says. “I think if you make a mistake as big as what they did, you owe your fellow senators and congressmen a big apology — and your constituents, as well, because nothing they did advanced the cause of repealing or dismantling Obamacare.” Norquist refrained from naming the
A finding in a study on the relationship between science literacy and political ideology surprised the Yale professor behind it: Tea party members know more science than non-tea partiers. Yale law professor Dan Kahan posted on his blog this week that he analyzed the responses of a set of more than 2,000 American adults recruited for another study and found that, on average, people who leaned liberal were more science literate than those who leaned conservative. However, those who identified as part of the tea party movement were actually better versed in science than those who didn’t, Kahan found. The findings met
A conservative group is accusing Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) of including an earmark for a water project in the deal to end the government shutdown and raise the debt ceiling. The Senate Conservatives Fund tagged the provision the “Kentucky Kickback,” and said it would benefit the Olmsted Locks and Dam, which is under construction on the Ohio River between Kentucky and Illinois. “In exchange for funding ObamaCare and raising the debt limit, Mitch McConnell has secured a $2 billion earmark,” the group wrote in a statement. “This is an insult to all the Kentucky families who don’t want to pay
The Holy Spirit made her do it. The court scribe who went on a crazed rant about the Constitution, religion and Freemasons after Wednesday’s vote to reopen the government said God spent the shutdown urging her to speak her mind. “For the past 2 and ½ weeks, the Holy Spirit has been waking me up in the middle of the night and preparing me (through my reluctance and doubt) to deliver a message in the House Chamber,” stenographer Dianne Foster Reidy told Fox News’ Chad Pergram in a statement. “That is what I did last night.” Reidy, 48, was hauled from the chamber and
So what does the balance sheet look like now that the US Congress has reached its 11th hour, 59th minute agreement to end the debt ceiling crisis? President Obama won this stand-off. The main achievement of the Republican Party was to shoot itself in feet and brain. [Snip] This ensured two things: that it would get the blame for the government shut-down; and that knowing this, Obama didn’t blink, thus forcing the Republicans into a humiliating surrender. Brilliant. Even now, many Republicans don’t know what hit them. One of them, however, shows he at least has got it:
A man from Arkansas died from gunshot wounds after he was dropped off at a Near West Side hospital by a cousin early Thursday morning, authorities said. Robert Franklin, 55, had been in a car with the cousin when they stopped to ask for directions, police said. The person they approached got into the back of the car and announced a robbery, police said. The robber fired into the car while getting out and hit Franklin in the back at least four times, according to police and the Cook County medical examiner´s office. The cousin drove Franklin to Stroger Hospital about 3:45 a.m.
One of the two girls facing charges over the suicide of a bullied 12-year-old Florida girl said Thursday she was "saddened” by the episode but expects to be cleared, according to a statement released by her attorney. The students, aged 12 and 14, are accused by Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd of "maliciously harassing" Rebecca Sedwick with verbal and physical abuse and cyber-bullying their victim until she took her own life. He booked the pair into a juvenile detention center Monday and released them to their parents under house arrest. Sedwick jumped to her death from a third-story cement plant
One of the few remaining British survivors of a German prisoner of war camp immortalised in The Great Escape film has died aged 91. Royal Air Force gunner Frank Stone, of Hathersage, Derbyshire, was taken to Stalag Luft III in Zagan as a teenager during the Second World War after his bomber crashed in Mannheim in 1940. He was in hut 104, home to 76 airmen who tried to escape via a 348ft tunnel in 1944. But the alarm was raised before Mr Stone, who had helped dispose of soil from the tunnel, could join them. Of the 76 men
President Barack Obama officially reopened the government with the stroke of a pen shortly after midnight Thursday. The White House budget chief followed with a statement ordering federal workers back to their desks in the morning. Now if only it were so easy. (Snip)Not only are those workers almost three weeks behind schedule, many will need to spend the next few days just digging through clogged inboxes and answering phone messages. Cleaning up will also be a top priority for many federal facilities, from deferred maintenance at more than 400 national park sites to first lady Michelle Obama’s weed-infested White
The fiftieth anniversary of the assassination of President Kennedy is nearly upon us, so one would expect America´s public intellectuals to be gearing up to present a series of sober and illuminating reflections about the tragedy´s cultural and political legacy. Of course, that´s not going to happen. Any misty-eyed resonance that can be wrung out of JFK´s death is already being exploited by our elite media gatekeepers to advance a political agenda. To start things off, the New Yorker´s George Packer has filed a dispatch about the "the potent brew of right-wing passions, much of it well organized and well funded—Bircher
It began with high hopes and lofty rhetoric, as a newly reelected President Barack Obama ended his State of the Union wish list with a call to action: "It remains the task of us all, as citizens of these United States, to be the authors of the next great chapter in our American story." But 2013 will hardly be remembered as a great chapter. Instead, even with Wednesday´s debt ceiling and government funding deal, this is a wasted year in Washington, one of more band-aid budgeting, polarized partisanship and Republican chaos.
Wednesday Night- I am in Houston. It’s raining clichés and nonsense on the TV news channels. Since I am old and have no plans to run for office ever, I think I will tell you the truth as I humbly see it about the budget/debt default crisis that just was very temporarily averted tonight… 1. It was not a waste of time for the GOP in the House to fight very hard to get the President to change Obamacare in a comprehensive way. The law is already a gigantic miscarriage of the legislative process. For the GOP to fight to straighten
Rep. Peter King thinks Republicans in the House could have bargained for much more than they´re getting in a pending Senate deal, if only the House had kept the government open in September and focused on negotiations over the federal debt limit. "Instead we look like the crazies," King, a Republican from Long Island, told me this afternoon from Washington. "Shutting down the government, throwing barricades against the White House, and having Ted Cruz reading Dr. Seuss, this is like the theater of the absurd. Except that it´s serious."
Russian scientists believe they have identified a new and more virulent strain of HIV. The subtype, known as 02_AG/A, is spreading rapidly and is now thought to account for more than 50 percent of new HIV infections in Siberia. The virus was first seen in the city of Novosibirsk in 2006 and is thought to be the most virulent subtype of the virus in Russia. [Snip] The number of HIV positive people in Novosibirsk has jumped from 2,000 in 2007 to 15,000 in 2012, according to Russia’s Federal AIDS Centre and 50 percent of the new cases have been caused
The Environmental Protection Agency is still working on those carbon-emissions rules, but it’s already saved its own workers from a potential bio-hazard: a 16-year-old can of soup, which was discovered in one of the Chicago headquarter’s refrigerators during the government shutdown. EPA workers from the midwest region got a welcome-back e-mail, which included a note from chief Gina McCarthy, information about back pay, and a few notes about what had gone on during the 16-day partial shuttering of the government. Fortunately, those remaining in the building had thought to clear the office fridges of all those weird Tupperware-like containers and tubs