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Archive for June 21st, 2010

Crooks & Liars- By Heather Monday Jun 21, 2010 7:00am

Chickenhawk Cheney Mini-Me Liz and her buddy Bloody I’m-never-right-about-anything-Bill Kristol are asked about the jobs and stimulus package that was blocked in the Senate when Joe Lieberman and Ben Nelson voted with the Republicans to kill it. Of course Cheney and Kristol use the opportunity to fear monger over the deficit and to repeat the lie that Americans’ primary concern is the size of the debt rather than the economy and jobs.

As Juan Williams correctly tried to point out, that is not what most Americans are concerned about. Digby has more on how these deficit fetishists in our print media and not just Fox are pushing the same meme.

Replaying the game of 2003:

Ben Somberg catches the Washington Post publishing lazy, nonfactual reporting. Again:

If Congress doesn’t provide additional stimulus spending, economists inside and outside the administration warn that the nation risks a prolonged period of high unemployment or, more frightening, a descent back into recession. But a competing threat — the exploding federal budget deficit — seems to be resonating more powerfully in Congress and among voters.

Somberg writes:

[I]s this notion supported by what the polling actually says? No. Not even close.

A Pew Research / National Journal poll from early June asked “Which of the following national economic issues worries you most?” Number one was “job situation” with 41%. “Federal budget deficit” got 23%.

An NBC / Wall Street Journal poll from early May asked “Please tell me which one of these items you think should be the top priority for the federal government.” Sure enough, “job creation and economic growth” won with 35%. “The deficit and government spending” got 20%.

A Fox News poll also in early May got even more dramatic results. “Economy and jobs” topped the priority list with 47%, while “deficit, spending” garnered only 15%.

A CBS / NYT poll in early April found 27% prioritizing “jobs”, 27% the “economy” and 5% prioritizing “budget deficit/national debt.”

The only recent poll that gives the slightest hint of support for the Post’s thesis is the USA Today / Gallup poll from late May (not even their newest). Participants were asked “How serious a threat to the future well-being of the United States do you consider each of the following.” For “federal government debt”, 40% said extremely serious, 39% very serious, and 15% somewhat serious. For “unemployment”, 33% said extremely serious, 50% said very serious, and 15% said somewhat serious. If you use only the “extremely serious” numbers, you get 7% more for the debt. Greg Marx at CJR makes the case that this poll, nevermind its headline, should not be read as some sort of overwhelming evidence of a shifted public view.

And in fact a newer Gallup poll, from a week ago, asking “What do you think is the most important problem facing the country today?” finds the economy and jobs on top. “Economy in general” gets 28%, “Unemployment/Jobs” gets 21%, and “Federal budget deficit” gets 7%.

I don’t know where this reporter got this information, but it is wrong and it requires a correction. The public is NOT more upset by the deficit than unemployment and to the extent they are upset about the deficit at all, it comes from the Big Lie that the deficit is responsible for the economic problems we face.

I have a fairly clear idea about why the powers that be are pushing this line, but why the press is doing it is another question. Just as they slanted their news and analysis in the run-up to the Iraq war, they are doing the same thing with respect to this deficit fetish. Read on…

There’s little doubt why anyone at Fox would be pushing this. They’re in the same camp with the Alan Simpson’s of the world that would rather destroy Social Security than see taxes raised on the rich. And of course good little war mongers like Cheney and Kristol would rather see our social safety nets destroyed rather than one penny being taken away from the military industrial complex.

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Lieberman Backpedals on Internet Kill Switch. Kinda. NOT!

FDL- Lisa Derrick Sunday June 20, 2010 1:22 pm

Two ago weeks Senator Joe “Turncoat” Lieberman, along with Maine’s Sen. Susan Collins and Sen. Tom Carper of Delaware proposed the Protecting Cyberspace as a National Asset Act, an internet kill switch which any POTUS, any time could flick to shut off the Intertoobs. And keep them shut off indefinitely. Much outrage and uproar ensued.

Sunday on CNN Loserman tried to explain that what he had in mind was not a total “All Your Base Are Belong to Us” move, but rather a partial Internet shut down. And why? Because other countries already have that in place and we have to keep up with the Hu Jintaos?

Right now China, the government, can disconnect parts of its Internet in case of war and we need to have that here too.

Wait, wut? Haven’t we been busy decrying actions like that as being all mean and stuff, and talking about how awful it that China can’t have Google or goatse, like real a democracy? And how it sucked that Pakistan shut down Facebook and Google on “Everybody Draw Mohammad Day”?

Lieberman goes on to explain that people are just over reacting and that the bill not censorship. Oh rilly? Protecting Cyberspace as a National Asset would force private websites to comply with broad cybersecurity measures and allow the President to disconnect Internet networks. The president’s power to shut down parts of the Web could be renewed indefinitely under the bill.

But it’s not a big deal, says Lieberman:

We need this capacity in a time of war. We need the capacity for the president to say, ‘Internet service provider, we’ve got to disconnect the American Internet from all traffic coming in from another foreign country, or we have to put a patch on this part of it’.

So I say to my friends on the Internet, relax. Take a look at the bill. And this is something that we need to protect our country.

Lieberman seems like he’s trying to sell this piece of legislation as (thought process/spin):

Oh noes, nasty people could mess with the internets and use them to cause and spread misinformation.

Well, yeah, and how is that different from our not-so upheavally present day?

Please email your senators on both side of the aisle with your opinions on the matter.

[HT: Raw Story]

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