Apr
29
2014

Buzzfeed Feeds Paul Ryan's Buzz

Buzzfeed illustration of Paul Ryan.

Paul Ryan says he wants to fight poverty, and he can convince reporters that he means it. But what about his actual record?

Aug
28
2013

Washington Post: Big Government…Isn't That Big

wash-post-big-govt

The Washington Post wanted to show that big government was still big–but they wound up showing readers mostly the opposite.

Feb
22
2013

Sometimes David Brooks Gets So Mad He Can't Write Straight

Incredible Hulk at Madame Tussaud's (Photo: Abi Skipp)

When David Brooks writes that Obama "declines to come up with a proposal" other than raising taxes on the rich, and in reality he has proposed a plan, that merits a correction, right? Maybe. But when you're a New York Times columnist, apparently you get to play by a different rulebook.

Aug
20
2012

What if Paul Ryan Isn't Really a Wonk? Krugman vs. Campaign Reporters

If you know anything of substance about Paul Ryan, it's that the Republican vice presidential pick knows his numbers. A Washington Post profile today by Michael Leahy (8/20/12) tells us: He got his start on Capitol Hill as a 19-year-old intern working in the mailroom of Sen. Bob Kasten (R-Wis.). That led in time to positions on congressional committees and habits he hasn't broken since, including a staffer's zeal for voracious research, for charts and PowerPoint presentations, and a facility for budget numbers that he recites with a savant's glee. As if that weren't clear enough, we're told later that […]

May
24
2012

If GOP Was Anti-Racist, Why Wasn't Buckley a Democrat?

The conservative National Review, which has had a longstanding attachment to racism (FAIR Blog, 4/11/12) which it has lately shown signs of regretting, now has a cover story (5/28/12) by Kevin Williamson that argues that the Democratic Party is now and always has been the party of racism, while the GOP has always been the party of civil rights. Sample: That is because those Southerners who defected from the Democratic Party in the 1960s and thereafter did so to join a Republican Party that was far more enlightened on racial issues than were the Democrats of the era, and had […]

Mar
05
2012

Frank Bruni and the Media's Snowe Crush

If you want an example of how much corporate media love so-called moderate Republicans, look no further than Frank Bruni's New York Times column (3/4/12): Back in 1999, when I covered Congress, I had a kind of crush on Olympia Snowe. Many of us in the Senate press gallery did. Well, that's good to know. As Bruni tells it, Snowe "dared to disagree with her party," which is something pundits always say they want to see more of. But Snowe's record on this count has always been a bit exaggerated. Snowe often ended up arguing for minor tweaks to Republican […]

Sep
07
2011

Jonathan Chait's Not-So-Magical Thinking

As progressive criticism of the Obama administration has intensified, the critics of the critics have stepped forward to defend the White House. Much of the case comes down to saying that Obama's lefty critics don't know how the game is played in Washington. Jonathan Chait from the New Republic had a New York Times Magazine piece this weekend (9/4/11) taking issue with Obama critics like Glenn Greenwald, accusing them of "magical thinking" about the power of the presidency. As the argument goes, Congress can stop what the White House wants to do, so you can't blame Obama for not winning […]

Aug
12
2010

Department of Unconvincing Arguments

New Republic blogger Jonathan Chait (4/11/10) criticizes Daily Kos founder Markos Moulitsas for comparing the Republican Party to the Taliban, noting that the latter engages in "wanton torture and violence."

Aug
28
2009

'Meaningful Change' at the New Republic

Glenn Greenwald (8/27/09, ad-viewing required) of Salon's series of New Republic quotes morphing from condemning a perceived "anti-Lieberman jihad" to calling for "knocking off Democrats like Conrad and Joe Lieberman" charts the outlet's "rapid and total reversal–one effectuated without the slightest acknowledgment that it even occurred." Calling the change "just the accountability-free nature of Beltway punditry," Greenwald also spies "a more important point highlighted here": namely, it is a sign of how dysfunctional the Democratic Party is–and how meaningless is their glorious super-majority–that even the New Republic, which long prided itself on safeguarding the party from nefarious left-wing influences, is […]