Stephen Colbert gives NBC's Chuck Todd a political beating...errrr...I mean hair pulling over Todd's idiotic response to Glenn Greenwald's word boarding of his Villager argument that an investigation of the Bush administration over prisoner abuse treatment would turn into a beltway weenie food fight and America couldn't handle it...
Greenwald: Isn't the best thing to do..to say to a prosecutor, "Were crimes committed...have this be treated like every other accusation of crime?"
Todd: Glenn, in a perfect world, yes. If you could guarantee me that we could keep this debate off of television...
Todd is a TV reporter, but wants to keep an investigation off of TV. I mean, this is the state of our media, folks. It just might be enlightening. Hey, just keep running the Gates/Obama story over and over again. That's what America wants. Not truth about torture or prisoner abuses...
BUZZFLASH NEWS ANALYSIS
by Rebecca Freitag
Sarah Palin will have a lot more free time to fight for America's greater good, and a lot of money to spend from SarahPAC, so everyone's asking, what will she do next? We think we have found the answer in a new organization formed to "counter the assault on conservatism and capitalism."
The Feds may be circling uncomfortably close to Rep. John Murtha as they probe kickbacks to defense contractors and possible earmarks-for-campaign-cash deals. But the veteran Democratic power-broker doesn't seem to be sweating it. In fact, he's acting as defiant as ever.
A Murtha spokesman tells TPMmuckraker that the Pennsylvania congressman has not hired a lawyer in connection with the investigations.
Possible legal jeopardy aside, Murtha doesn't even seem inclined to rein in his penchant for dispensing earmarks to friendly outfits. Buried in a Wall Street Journal story (sub. req.) about the Pentagon spending bill that passed Murtha's Defense Appropriations subcommittee this week is the news that the bill contains 15 separate Murtha-secured earmarks, worth a total of around $77 million, for entities whose employees gave to the congressman's campaigns. One defense contractor, Virginia-based Argon ST Inc., will get $8 million. Argon's employees, and its political action committee, have given Murtha $46,600 in contributions since 2007. In all, the $636.3 billion contains more than 1,100 earmarks, worth a total of more than $2.7 billion.
Murtha was characteristically unapologetic about the earmarks. His spokesman told the Journal that the congressman was "proud to secure funding for businesses and organizations in our district that are delivering quality products and services to the Defense Department."
There appear to be several overlapping federal probes focused on a longstanding web of cozy dealings between Murtha, a handful of defense contractors with close ties to the congressman, and a now-defunct lobbying firm that was founded by Murtha's former chief of staff. An earmark secured by Murtha in 2005 for a defense contractor has led to two guilty pleas in connection with a kickback scheme. A separate defense contractor, Kuchera Industries, which has close ties to Murtha, had its Pennsylvania headquarters raided by the Feds earlier this year. And the now-defunct PMA lobby firm -- which was founded by a former Murtha chief of staff -- also was raided by the FBI last year. The Feds are said to be looking at whether it illegally tied campaign cash to earmarks. Murtha has directed almost $100 million to PMA's clients over the years, and has received millions in contributions from the firm's employees.
Still, Murtha's "je-ne-regrette-rien" stance perhaps shouldn't come as a surprise. Earlier this year, he told a local paper: "If I'm corrupt, it's because I take care of my district."
Speaking of the Birthers, a remarkable line from POLITICO's piece today on how Republican members of Congress are looking with trepidation to Birther encounters on the recess:
Sen. Jim Inhofe has also tried to find the elusive middle ground.
"They have a point," he said of the birthers. "I don’t discourage it. ... But I’m going to pursue defeating [Obama] on things that I think are very destructive to America."
Amazing. These guys are a hoot!
Blogger-activist Mike Stark has been staking out Capitol Hill recently, trying to get Republican congressmen on the record about whether or not they believe President Obama was born in the United States. Only a couple of GOP congressmen were willing to state without reservation that Obama is the legal and constitutional President of the United States. Many others said they ?think there are questions? and would ?like to see the documents.? Rep. Tom Price (R-GA) began running away from Stark — literally — to avoid answering the question. Another congressman avoided Stark by hiding in a book store and pretending to look at pens. Watch it:
For more about the ?birthers,? read today?s Progress Report on ?The Wacko Wing.?
You may have noticed the news last week that the Feds arrested a bunch of accused fraudsters, an alleged kidney merchant and a decent chunk of the New Jersey political class all in one fell swoop. TPMMuckraker's Zack Roth explains what it was all about.[...]
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BUZZFLASH NEWS ANALYSIS
by Meg White
The shrill tones of former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin's farewell speech this weekend echo today in the media's ears, which are burning with the wry amusement of being once again recognized by the former vice-presidential candidate.
But are we, the evil media, surprised in the least? Of course it was an incoherent, rambling assault on all the terrible straw men attacking Palin, her family and her glorious state. That's because, as a polar opposite to the peaceful Gilbert O' Sullivan, Palin is a fighter, not a writer.
In fact, I'd posit that that's why she quit in the first place. If she's not campaigning, she can't trumpet her various fights against Washington, special interests or the Alaskan legislature out on the trail. Getting stuff done is generally not as combative as Palin would like. Sometimes it's downright boring. And lame ducks, without the bright spotlight of a campaign shining down upon them, are often just expected to get things done. Yawn.
It is wholly understandable and unsurprising that the media and pundits would focus on the former governor's attacks on the media. After all, it's only natural for people to perk up when they hear themselves being mentioned. Rather than calling up a false sense of injury at being unfairly attacked by the ex-pol, I'd like to call attention to another group maligned in Palin's speech.
Far more often referred to than even the media in her rambling diatribe was the U.S. military.
Simulposted at Daily KosWe have not yet begun to pester!John Paul JonesDamn the Republicans, Full Speed Ahead!Admiral FarragutDid we quit when The Germans bombed Pearl Harbor???Senator Bluto Blutarsky Did you think this was going to be easy?Did you[...]
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