Fox News Was So Sure That Joe Biden Was Running For President Yesterday

In remarks delivered today in the White House Rose Garden, Vice-President Joe Biden announced that he will not be a candidate for president in 2016. After a painfully long decision-making process, Biden stood with President Obama and his wife Jill to dash the hopes of right-wingers everywhere who were yearning for a more contentious Democratic primary.

Fox News

However, Fox News may not be satisfied with this announcement. After all, just yesterday their senior White House correspondent, Ed Henry, appeared on the air (video below) to reveal that…

“He’s likely in. […] I’ve got three sources close to the Vice-President who are saying that, in meetings and in phone calls, he has said that he’s likely to get in.”

Three sources! That settles it. Biden is only a single source, so it’s three against one and, therefore, he must be lying. The folks at Fox News can mark this down as another example of the dishonesty of the Obama administration. Trey Gowdy is expected to call for hearings on whether or not Biden lied about his presidential ambitions and what email account he used to convey them to Obama.

Henry was not alone in his assessment of Biden’s intentions. His Fox News colleague Bill O’Reilly said weeks ago that Biden was “ramping up to challenge Hillary Clinton” and that he “believes he will be in the race.” Another colleague, Monica Crowley, insisted repeatedly that “As I have been saying… He’s running.”

Other media figures have also chimed in. For instance, Diane Francis of the National Post said that “#Biden definitely running, good source, amid concern about Clinton skeletons;” Roger Simon of PJMedia tweeted “BREAKING> Big financial backer says #Biden definitely running;” Gabriel Sherman of New York Magazine wrote “Joe Biden is running for president — a fact that has been obvious, and true, for weeks;” and The Most Wrong Man in America, Bill Kristol of the Weekly Standard, couldn’t be more certain saying…

I’m told by Democrat I trust that Biden ‘almost certain’ to run, will announce this week in time to speak at the Iowa J-J dinner Sat night.”


Biden confirms to Obama at lunch today he’s running, announces at U Delaware tomorrow. You can feel the Joementum!

There is never a shortage of idiotic punditry surrounding any event in American politics. But with so many instances of certainty, backed by allegedly unassailable sources, you have to wonder how these people keep their jobs. Will Ed Henry go back and grill his three sources to find out why they were so horribly wrong? Will he apologize to his viewers? And coming on the heels of the Fox News intelligence analyst who was just arrested for falsifying his credentials, you have to wonder if anything that anyone says on the network is worthy of consideration.

Even as I’m writing this, Charles Krauthammer is on Fox saying that Biden’s speech today was a actually a secret announcement that he IS running, and that he will step in as soon as Clinton is indicted. So we can all feel a little more at ease knowing that, no matter what is happening anywhere in the world, the conspiracy kooks are working hard to invent crazy theories based on nothing but their unique brand of dementia.

How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.

Fox Nation vs. Reality: Gun Lobbyists Don’t Shoot People – Their Kids Do

Today Fox Nation went after Joe Biden’s Gun Violence Prevention Task Force by reporting that one of the members is the father of a young man who was convicted in 2008 of plotting a Columbine-style attack at his school. But that was only half of the story.

Fox Nation

Thomas Nee was president of the Boston Police Patrolman’s Association. He was selected to be a member of the task force due to his life-long career in law enforcement and his 30 year association with Biden. Unfortunately, he also happens to have a son who ran afoul of the law.

Joseph Nee was a teenager when he reportedly conspired with his friend, Tobin Kerns, to commit an assault on the students and faculty of his Marshfield, MA, school. He was convicted and sentenced to nine months, with another two years of probation. The defense noted that it was Joseph who went to the police to report the plot, which resulted in his arrest and that of his friend. Consequently, due to Joseph’s renunciation of the activity and cooperation with law enforcement, no one was ever actually threatened or harmed.

The article posted by the Fox Nationalists featured the sensationalist headline “Member Of Biden’s ‘Gun Control Task Force’ Has Son Convicted Of Planning Columbine-Style Attack.” The clear intent on the part of Fox was to tarnish the task force’s reputation in order to bias public opinion against its work. None of the details were included by Fox or the Breitbart News column which was its source.

Also not included was the fact that the President of the NRA has also had family problems with regard to criminal gun use. David Keene’s son was convicted of shooting at another man in an incident of road rage. The younger Keene was sentenced to ten years in prison for attempted murder.

To the extent that Fox desires to discredit Biden’s task force by publicizing the actions of a single member’s family, the NRA should be similarly liable for the actions of the spawn of its president. If anything, these kids are a warning sign of the potential risks associated with growing up in families where firearms are revered. Both of these fathers were ardent gun advocates and users, and they raised their kids in households where such weaponry was commonplace.

However, neither of these fathers can reasonably be prohibited from involving themselves in the public discourse on gun violence because of the actions of their sons. And this one-sided effort by Fox to impose a form of censorship via smear tactics is unconscionable, unethical, and further evidence of their unfitness to be regarded as a credible news enterprise.

Fox News Escalates Pro-Gun Campaign With Help From Ted Nugent

True to form, Fox News is rolling out a massive PR blitz in favor of the NRA’s “Guns Everywhere” agenda. It’s a free advertising bonanza for gun nuts and rightist politicians who exploit the controversy as a wedge issue. This morning there were fourteen separate stories on Fox Nation in addition to those airing on multiple programs on the Fox News Channel. And in every case the tone mirrored gun worshipers who are willing to tolerate mass murder every so often in order to hang on to their assault weapons.

Ted Nugent

Much of what is giving them their latest case of the willies is an off-hand remark by Vice-President Joe Biden. Speaking about bipartisan meetings with people and groups concerned about the subject, he told reporters that “There are executive orders, executive action that can be taken.” That was all it took to heat up the right to boiling, even though the reality is that there are very few and limited measures that can be implemented in that manner. Biden was merely referencing the fact that his review would be comprehensive, as any responsible approach to such a serious subject should be.

The resulting outrage echoed across the mediasphere with lunatics like Alex Jones threatening an armed rebellion, and NRA board member Ted Nugent comparing gun nuts to Rosa Parks. An item on Drudge made comparisons to Stalin and Hitler. Of course the usual suspects in the pundit and political classes immediately began inciting fears of a tyrannical Obama confiscating all guns and abolishing the Constitution. Among those were Fox’s Charles Krauthammer, who declared any regulation of guns was unconstitutional and would lead to an insurrection, and newly minted Tea Party senator Ted Cruz, who concurred.

It really is impossible to have a rational, productive discussion with hair-trigger crackpots like these inflaming their followers and distorting the facts. They disregard the actual legal precedents with regard to regulation, as well as their own saner associates (i.e. Gen. Stanley McChrystal), and even recent polls that show that majorities of NRA members favor stricter controls on certain types of guns. In this environment it will require lawmakers to focus on the facts and the people’s will, rather than the lobbyists and political opportunists, if we hope to make our country safer.

Fox News Knows Ryan Lost Debate, So They Resort To Distractions And Lies

One of the best ways that experienced debate watchers know when one side has lost is if that side spends most of their time criticizing the moderator and/or the style of their opponent. That’s a clear sign that they believe they came up short on substance. And it’s precisely what Ryan’s side did from the moment the debate ended.

Twitter was buzzing with conservatives whining that moderator Martha Radditz was biased in favor of Biden, even though they had little evidence to cite for that assertion. Much of their complaining reached back twenty years to her 1991 wedding where President Obama was a guest of the groom. They conveniently wipe from their consciousness the fact that Radditz divorced Obama’s pal in 1997 and the unlikelihood that she would be inclined to do a favor for a friend of the friend of her ex-husband.

Fox News leaped to the aid of their client, resuming their role as PR agency for the GOP. And since they were no better able to attack on substance, they obsessively harped on Biden’s demeanor.

Fox Nation - Biden Smiles

They regarded his smiling and laughing as flaws that demonstrated disrespect for Ryan. But seriously, if that’s all they’ve got they might as well admit they were crushed by Biden’s command of the debate. In fact, it was clear that when Biden was laughing it was almost always in response to Ryan saying something that was blatantly false. Biden’s smile was a pretty good sign that Ryan had just lied. And had Biden remained straight-faced you can bet that he would have been castigated by the same critics as dour and unlikeable (sort of like Ryan).

Fox News also made an effort to skew the public reaction to the debate and, true to form, they outright lied. There were two post-debate polls conducted – one by CBS that showed Biden winning 50-32, and one by CNN that put Ryan ahead 48-44. Fox News reported that two polls placed Ryan in the lead.

Fox Nation Debate Polls

The way that Fox arrived at this conclusion was by including an online survey by CNBC. That was actually just a web question that could be answered by anyone who visited their site. It was not a scientific poll. In fact, while the numbers did put Ryan ahead (36-56) when Fox first reported them Thursday evening, later on Friday morning the same poll showed Biden leading (52-44).

CNBC Debate Poll

Nevertheless, Fox was still reporting the older numbers of this non-poll. When Steve Doocy brought it up on Fox & Friends he only mentioned that two polls favored Ryan. Then, when Brian Kilmeade noted a third poll by CBS, Doocy dismissed it saying that it was just a focus group with only 50 people. In fact, CBS conducted a conventional poll with 431 respondents. So Doocy lied to throw out CBS’s real poll while embracing CNBC’s fake one.

Much of the media followed the same course with Politico, The Guardian, The Daily Caller, The Washington Examiner, National Review, and Breitbart Nwes, all characterizing what CNBC posted as an actual poll. This tendency to promote dishonest information fits nicely in the GOP’s new post-truth era. Which brings us back to Paul Ryan, who did his part by dropping at least two lies during the debate that had previously been found to be “Pants-on-Fire” lies by PolitiFact. And not being a slacker, one of Ryans lies was actually the “Lie of the Year” in 2010. Nice work, Paul.

Biden/Ryan Debate: Paul Ryan Reprises PolitiFact’s 2010 Lie of the Year

Pants on FireIt’s not enough for Republicans to merely lie after having set the bar for veracity so low this election season. Consequently, after Romney spent 90 minutes lying last week, Ryan had to aim higher. And boy, did he. He reprised the 2010 Lie of the Year per PolitiFact.

PolitiFact’s Lie of the Year: ‘A government takeover of health care’
Ryan: President Obama, he had his chance. He made his choices. His economic agenda, more spending, more borrowing, higher taxes, a government takeover of health care. It’s not working.

In addition to that, Ryan let loose another PolitiFact Pants-On-Fire lie:

Smallest Navy Since 1917
Ryan: If these cuts go through, our Navy will be the smallest — the smallest it has been since before World War I.

Republicans have been very upset at having been called liars lately. That’s despite the fact that Romney started it even before the first debate by projecting that Obama would lie. But I would advise them that if they don’t like being called liars, they should stop lying.

More Context Mangling By The Romney Camp: Joe Biden Edition

The Romney campaign has made grabbing snippets of President Obama’s speeches and contorting their meaning the central strategy of his campaign. Yesterday they expanded their strategy to include Vice-President Joe Biden.

Fox News on Joe Biden

Fox News and its community web site Fox Nation, leaped on Biden after he delivered a speech saying pretty much the same thing that Obama has been saying for years. The extracted snippet that Fox is blasting as if it were somehow significant is “Yes we do.” Fox then elaborates by placing those three little words next to “want to raise taxes.” But that is not what Biden said. Here is the complete quote in context:

“On top of the trillion dollars in spending we’ve already cut, we’re going to ask, yes, we’re going to ask the wealthy to pay more. My heart breaks. Come on, man. You know the phrase they always use? ‘Obama and Biden want to raise taxes by a trillion dollars.’ Guess what? Yes, we do in one regard: We want to let that trillion dollar tax cut expire so the middle class doesn’t have to bear the burden of all that money going to the super-wealthy.”

Clearly Biden was reiterating Obama’s long held agenda to let Bush’s tax cuts for the rich expire. There is nothing controversial about demonstrating consistency in political ideology, which is what Biden did. Yet Romney, with the help of Fox News, is twisting these comments to imply that Obama is planning to raise everyone’s taxes. They know that isn’t true, which is the definition of a lie. If Romney wants people to stop calling him a liar, all he has to do is stop lying.

Not So Breitbart: Biden Does NOT Address Empty Seats, Nor Jeremiah Wright

The mental deficients at Breitbart News have done it again – twice.

Breitbart News

The picture above shows a packed house at the NAACP conference for the appearance by Vice-President Joe Biden. The speech was well received with the crowd even booing when he announced that he was wrapping up.

Nevertheless, the Breitbrats found a photo that was tweeted prior to Biden’s arrival and decided to post that with an article that said that “Biden Addresses Empty Seats at NAACP Convention.” Obviously, that was not true. The larger photo of an enthusiastic crowd was taken by an actual reporter from Reuters. Not surprisingly, the mysterious editors at Fox Nation (who Fox refuses to identify) re-posted the Breibrat item as if it were certifiable news.

In addition to the false assertion of an empty hall, the Breitbrats sought to portray their fabricated story as a “misstep for a presidential campaign unable to find its footing.”

“The low turnout could be due to weather, as Hawkins suggests, or perhaps it could have been in protest because the NAACP was snubbed by Obama. Or, maybe people didn’t feel it imperative to hear America’s Grandpa ramble on about how much he learned in a Reverend Wright’s church.”

Of course, neither the weather, nor an alleged snubbing, prevented the conferees from attending in force. But what’s worse is the reference to Rev. Wright. That bit was cribbed from Michelle Malkin. As it turns out, Biden was not referring to Jeremiah Wright at all. It never occurred to these goofballs that there might be more than one Rev. Wright in America.

Andrew Breibart’s ghost must be so proud of these idiots.

New York Post Columnist Tells Fox News That Obama Might Kill Biden

Michael Goodwin is a notoriously uber-conservative writer for Rupert Murdoch’s wingnut tabloid, the New York Post. This morning he ventured over to Murdoch’s Fox News studios to be interviewed about the presidential election.

Fox News Alert

When the subject turned to vice-presidents, Goodwin couldn’t resist making a Mafia association with President Obama caste as the Godfather. His prediction is that Joe Biden will be disposed of to make room for Hillary Clinton on the Democratic ticket.

“Joe Biden is the Fredo of the Obama family and I wouldn’t be surprised to see him sent out on a little fishing boat one early morning. […] If it comes close in the summer, if the polls show Obama trailing, he will make the switch. Hillary Clinton will be on the ticket and Joe Biden will be sleeping with the fishes.”

Twice in Goodwin’s remarks he refers to Biden being assassinated in order to reassign Clinton. The “little fishing boat” and “sleeping with the fishes” are both Mafia-speak for mob hits from the iconic Godfather movies.

The outlandishness of Goodwin’s assertions are nearly matched by his incoherent analysis. If Obama were going to ditch Biden he would have done so before having produced warehouses full of Obama/Biden campaign paraphernalia. And making such a switch later in the season would only reek of desperation. What’s more, Clinton has absolutely no incentive to leave her post as Secretary of State, where she is a dominant player on the world stage, for a demotion to vice-president, where she’d be relegated to attending funerals and other ceremonial duties. And the cherry on the top of Goodwin’s nuttiness is that he actually aligns himself with the political analysis of the deceased leader of Al Qaeda:

“Even Osama Bin Laden, in those letters, said that Biden is woefully unprepared to be president.”

When right-wingers praise Bin Laden as an ideological ally something has gone terribly wrong. But the right’s obsession with hostile rhetoric is well documented. They frequently engage in assassination fantasies featuring Obama, and they openly yearn for violent ends to their political adversaries. So it is not surprising to see them project their psychotic behavior onto the President and suggest that he would off his own VP. That’s how the right thinks about these matters, and they assume that everyone else is as emotionally perverse as they are themselves.

This Is A Big Fucking Deal?

President Obama signed the Senate health care bill into law this morning. While it is not the bill I would have written, it was still an historic moment that achieved something that 18 previous presidents failed to achieve.

But for much of the media, led by Fox News, the hot topic of the event was that VP Joe Biden whispered a congratulatory remark in the President’s ear:

“This is a big fucking deal.”

The President’s press secretary, Robert Gibbs, reacted quickly to the growing hysteria in a tweet saying, “And yes Mr. Vice President, you’re right…” But this brewing scandal may yet overtake the frenzy surrounding the health care bill itself. I wonder if the President’s critics were just as incensed when then-VP Dick Cheney told Sen. Patrick Leahy to “Go fuck yourself.” right on the Senate floor?

And let’s not forget the time that Cheney pointed to a New York Times reporter at a campaign rally and whispered to George Bush “There’s Adam Clymer — major league asshole.” To which Bush responded, “Yeah, big time.”

My response to the media reaction to Biden’s remarks: This is a big fucking deal? Really?

Fox News Deception Jumps Completely Off The Scale

Just a month after Fox News was caught reading verbatim from a Republican press release and presenting it as a news story, they have now dipped into territory that is so thoroughly unethical that it boggles the mind.

Media Matters caught a segment hosted by Martha MacCallum wherein she presented a state of affairs that she felt deserved a looking into.:

“Well, after weeks of economic doom and gloom, the Obama administration is now singing a slightly different tune. Take a look at what was said in recent interviews this weekend.”

Thereupon she played a video montage of President Obama and members of his staff saying positive things about the future prospects of our economy. Since Fox News spent most of last week complaining that Obama was too negative, it is ironic that they are now complaining that he is too positive. Would MacCallum prefer that Obama continue the doom and gloom for which she had previously chastised him?

But the bigger problem was that the video montage included a clip a Vice President Joe Biden saying that “The fundamentals of the economy are strong.” MacCallum characterized the whole clip as being comprised of comments made “in recent interviews this weekend.” Except that Biden’s remarks were made six months ago. Even worse, he was not expressing his own opinion that the economy was strong, he was mocking John McCain for saying so. MacCallum and Fox News cropped out the part where Biden said…

“Ladies and gentlemen, I believe that’s why John McCain could say with a straight face, as recently as this morning — and this is a quote: ‘The fundamentals of the economy are strong.‘ That’s what John says. He says that ‘we’ve made great progress economically’ in the Bush years.”

So MacCallum not only lied about when Biden’s remarks were made, she aired a video edited to appear as if Biden had said something when, in fact, he was quoting McCain as having said it.

It is just totally incomprehensible that anyone regards Fox News with any measure of respect.

Update 3/17/09: Twelve minutes into this morning’s program, Martha MacCallum raised the issue about the Biden video. She said that the video was indeed from six months ago and that Biden was quoting McCain. She then apologized for having “gotten it wrong.” While there was no explanation for how something this egregiously misleading occurred, I suppose it’s the best we can expect from Fox News.