Quotable Quote of the Month

What does it take for Republicans to take off the flag pin and say, 'I am just too embarrassed to be on this team'?".- Bill Maher

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Conservative/Libertarian Author Explains Why Megyn Kelly's Ratings Are Higher Than Rachel Maddow's

The following post was written by Rick Wells at the conservative/libertarian blog The Free Patriot. My commentary follows it.

Megyn Kelly Vs Rachael Maddow; The Obvious Answer to a Very Stupid Question

As the president of a major network, even a discredited government propaganda arm such as MSNBC, one would expect a little more discernment from Phil Griffin than what he is presently displaying.  His amusing tirade asking for an “investigation” into the reason why Fox News doubled their ratings over programming on his network in a key demographic overnight is not hard to explain.  The answer is written all over Rachel Maddow’s face. Compare her appearance with that of the newly returned Megyn Kelly and anybody with half a brain has it figured out.

Of course, nobody tunes in just to ogle a pretty girl, but it is a part of the package that can’t be simply discounted.

In addition to not being overly abrasive, not talking condescendingly down to her audience and guests, and having the aura of being genuinely likeable, one can’t help but to appreciate the fact that Ms. Kelly is a force to be reckoned with. She is also an attorney. She is the complete package.

Ms. Maddow has nice glasses. I wonder if they are shatterproof athletic style.

Anyone who has been watching the Fox network, as Mr. Griffin certainly should have been doing, to learn from his competition, would know that their management realized long ago that their audience appreciated a pretty face. They still want news, but a pretty face as the messenger is a plus.

Rather than launch into a rant demanding an explanation as to why his competition once again beat him out, an investigation into why he continues to handicap his programming success with the likes of Maddow might prove more appropriate.

I don’t watch much network news myself, where I live Fox isn’t available and CNN content is barely watchable. MSNBC is not on the menu, but it wouldn’t make any difference. I refuse to be programmed.

As of the time of this writing, Nielsen has not yet responded to Griffin’s remarks. It is highly unlikely that there is any merit to his ravings. Tantrums are the domain of children and liberals. Nielsen must be aware of this as they deal largely with liberals in their media related business.

The photo associated with this article speaks volumes. A manly woman is no match for a real man’s woman. Failure would likely result as well from positioning an effeminate male in that spot. Sexual orientation aside, people are more comfortable with an attractive individual in the “face of the reader” position. It really is quite simple. A compromising morphed unisex, gender-neutral talking head just doesn’t have the mass appeal, Phil. There’s some free facts of life info from me to you.

It could be that Griffin has taken the words of John D. Rockefeller to heart, that, “Competition is a Sin.” If that is the belief of Mr. Griffin, he should pressure his network ownership to buy Fox News. Otherwise, the competition will remain and this “ugly” reality will continue to haunt him, and his network.

-Rick Wells

Mr. Wells' argument is similar to one I've heard from conservatives before... our women are hotter than yours!  Had he focused more on Phil Griffin's call for an investigation and avoided the physical attractiveness angle in explaining why Megyn Kelly beats Rachel Maddow in the ratings, his post would have been much better. The substantial one-day ratings bump in the 25-54 demo by The Kelly File is odd. However, that's not to say it isn't legit. As for Mr.Wells' theory on Ms. Kelly's ratings dominance, he really does her a disservice. He mentioned the other qualities he feels give Ms. Kelly an edge over Ms. Maddow. Why bring physical appearance into the equation? Would he have done it if the two hosts were men?

One factor Mr.Wells failed to mention in explaining Ms. Kelly's ratings victories over Ms. Maddow and the other cable news shows in the 9 pm EST timeslot is this: She has a strong lead-in courtesy of Bill O'Reilly, whose show has been the #1 cable news program for several years. Political hack Sean Hannity used to come on at 9 pm and I think he was clearly the beneficiary of following The O'Reilly Factor. That's not to compare Ms. Kelly to Hannity because as I said in a previous post, I think she's far superior.

For the most part, the comments on Mr. Wells' post echoed his sentiments. In some cases, they were worse. Referring to Ms. Maddow as "Madcow", "Mancow", and a "Bill Gates Look-a-Like Bull Lezzy" is sadly what passes for intelligent thought in some conservative circles. I would compare it to something I'd expect to hear on an elementary school playground, but that would be an insult to elementary school kids.

If there was such a thing as an "irony" gene, you'd have to question whether or not conservatives are capable of possessing one. Many of the commenters say something along the lines of not liking being lied to, programmed, etc. Yet they watch Fox, whose tendency to misinform its viewers has been well-documented. Even Mr. Wells (who states he rarely watches cable news) takes a shot at MSNBC's credibility, but provides no evidence to back up his claim.

Finally, I have a question for the conservatives who read this post. How has Fox News' ratings dominance benefitted the conservative movement? Other than lining the pockets of those who work there, what good has it done for your side? You're losing the same-sex marriage argument, you lost the healthcare debate, and you came up short in the last two presidential elections. For the righties who stick out their proverbial chests over the ratings of Fox News, do you like apples? How about these apples?!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

On This Day: MLK Delivers His "I Have a Dream" Speech

On Aug 28th 1963, Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his iconic "I Have a Dream Speech". There's not much for me to say other than, "Take it away Dr. King".

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

On This Day: Chris Matthews vs. Reince Priebus on Morning Joe

This is the first installment of a periodic series in which I post about events from the past.

One year ago today during a segment of Morning Joe, the hosts and their guests discussed the then-upcoming Republican National Convention and what candidate Mitt Romney could do to turn things around. At about the 2:35 mark of the clip below, the fireworks start when Chris Matthews takes RNC Chairman Reince Priebus to task for what he felt were the GOP's underhanded attacks against President Obama. Chris is like a pitbull because once he gets his teeth in an opponent's ass, he isn't going to let go easily. Because I rarely see Priebus get called on his BS when he's on news programs, it was nice to see him get challenged.  Damn I love live TV!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Lee Daniels: America Is a More Racist Country Since Barack Obama Became President

On Piers Morgan's program last night, Lee Daniels (the director and producer of the hit movie Lee Daniels' The Butler) was a guest along with two of the film's cast members (Lenny Kravitz and Cuba Gooding Jr.). During the segment, Piers asked Lee if America is a more or less racist country since Barack Obama became POTUS. Lee responded by saying that sadly, America is more racist since then. In addition to Lee's remarks, the clip below also contains comments by Lenny and Cuba.

I don't think America has become more racist since Barack Obama became president. Instead, his presidency has caused the racism simmering below the surface to rise to the top. The people harboring racist views already felt this way before Barack Obama was sworn in as POTUS. His presidency has just allowed them an excuse to spread their venom. The same thing happened during the Rodney King and O.J. Simpson trials back in the 1990s. As I've said before, America has come a long way when it comes to race relations. However, events such as the presidency of Barack Obama demonstrate that we still have a lot of work to do.

What are your thoughts on the state of racism since the presidency of Barack Obama?

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Sunday Funnies: Cheerios Ad Parody

In June of this year, a Cheerios ad featuring an interracial family generated some controversy. In response to the backlash, comic filmmaker Kenji created the following parody (which has over 1 million views on You Tube).

Friday, August 9, 2013

Megyn Kelly Set to Take the 9 PM Slot On Fox News

According to a UPI.com story, Fox anchor Megyn Kelly will be taking over the 9 pm timeslot on Fox News once she returns from maternity leave this fall. This doesn't come as a big surprise because the powers that be at Fox have been grooming Kelly for prime time for at least a couple of years. With this impending primetime shakeup, my guess is that Sean Hannity's program will move an hour back to 10 pm and Greta Van Susteren (who currently holds the 10 pm slot) may want to brush up her résumé

Kelly's move to the 9 pm slot on Fox will be an upgrade over the current occupant and a better complement to The O'Reilly Factor. It's no secret I'm no fan of Sean Hannity, but it's not because he's a conservative. I don't like him because he's habitually dishonest, whiny, and boring. The trifecta of bad broadcasting. Although I've had issues with Kelly, she can be one of the more reasonable voices at Fox (which is like calling Moe the "smart Stooge"). Change can be a good thing and I'm intrigued to see what Kelly does with her upcoming primetime show.

The clip below is from a spring 2013 segment of America Live with Megyn Kelly in which Kelly challenged guests Erick Erickson and Lou Dobbs on their views about women in the workplace.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Media Matters Founder Joins RNC Head In Urging NBC and CNN To Dump Clinton Specials

left to right: Priebus, Clinton, and Brock
On August 5th in a response to announcements late last month by NBC and CNN that they would be producing Hillary Clinton-related specials (a miniseries starring Diane Lane and a feature length documentary, respectively), RNC Chairman Reince Priebus called for both networks to put a halt to these programs. If they didn't, Priebus threatened that the GOP would boycott any 2016 presidential debates hosted by the two networks.

Priebus' letter to CNN

Priebus' letter to NBC

Surprisingly, Media Matters founder David Brock wrote letters to NBC and CNN the next day also requesting they cancel their planned Clinton programs. In addition to the story on Brock's pleas to NBC and CNN, the link below also includes the letters he sent to both networks.

David Brock call on NBC and CNN to cancel their Hillary Clinton specials

Although Priebus and Brock want the same result, their motives differ. Priebus feels that NBC and CNN are in the business of promoting Democrats and the Clinton specials would be a boost to Hillary's bid for the 2016 presidency (assuming she runs). Brock believes that the specials could tarnish the reputations of the news divisions of each network (they are being produced by NBC Entertainment and CNN Films, respectively). Brock's other concerns are the potential criticism the networks could face for failing to provide equal time to all potential candidates and for not adopting the right-wing noise machine's ideological view of Hillary.

I disagree with both Priebus and Brock, although I do think the latter's intentions are sincere. Priebus' criticism of NBC and CNN comes off as whiny, especially since it's no secret that the Republican party has its own network. It also makes the GOP look desperate and scared of a potential presidential run by Hillary Clinton. As for Brock, he shouldn't be aiding the GOP and their accusations of liberal bias. I was glad to see that CNN shows no signs of caving to the demands of Priebus.

Priebus' appearance on the CNN program OutFront with Erin Burnett:

Although Ms. Burnett did a good job overall, she let Priebus off the hook by not asking him about the numerous Fox News hosts and contributors who campaigned for the GOP in 2011-2012. At approx. the 6:20 mark, Ms. Burnett gets ready to ask Priebus a Fox-related question. However, he seemed to anticipate a tough question and cut her off in what appeared to be an effort to run out the clock. Although it's not the one I would have asked, the question about Fox that Ms. Burnett asked near the end was a good one.

Priebus' appearance on Hannity:

Both Priebus and Hannity were in typical form. In their eyes, if you're a member of the news media and not demonizing liberals or giving every break to the GOP, it makes you liberal by definition. Also, they're still blaming the so-called liberal media for the damage the debates did to the GOP brand. So much for the conservative's belief in personal responsibility. Towards the end, Priebus discusses plans for the GOP to select the debate moderators themselves. Priebus' stance against the so-called liberal media no doubt plays well with the GOP base. However, in addition to the aforementioned "whiny" and "desperate", I think Priebus' latest moves make him and the GOP look weak as well. 

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Religious Scholar Takes Fox News Host to School

On July 26, author and religious historian Reza Aslan was a guest on "Spirited Debate", a FoxNews.com webcast about religion hosted by Lauren Green. Aslan was on the program to promote his new book Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth. The interview has gone viral and Ms. Green has been heavily criticized. Words such as "the worst", "most embarrassing", and "cringe-worthy" have been used to describe her interview with Aslan. You can watch and see if the criticism is apt or not.

The merits of Ms. Green's opening question regarding why a Muslim would write a book on Christianity is debatable. One could argue that it was designed for those not familiar with Aslan's work. This theory may be giving Ms. Green too much credit though. However, once Aslan gave his response, Ms. Green sounded downright silly when she asked why he'd be interested in the founder of Christianity. If Pamela Geller was on "Spirited Debate" promoting one of her books about Islam, do you think Ms. Green would have questioned why a Christian is writing about Islam?! After watching the interview, it may appear to some as if Aslan wears his academic credentials on his sleeve. However, I think it was unfortunately necessary for him to repeatedly state his credentials because Ms. Green couldn't get off her talking point of whether or not he was qualified to write the book in the first place. As a side note, I'm willing to bet Aslan knows more about Christianity than many of the so-called Christians walking around.

During the interview, Ms. Green read criticisms of the book by two theologians and someone watching the webcast. Nothing wrong with that. However, the interview would have been much better if she also read passages from the book itself and then asked Aslan questions related to them. Ms. Green also accuses Aslan of trying to conceal his Muslim background. At this point she should have stayed down because Aslan easily dismantled her claim.

Until this past weekend, I had never heard of Reza Aslan. However, I think this interview will serve to raise his profile in a positive way because he calmly and eloquently stated his reasons for writing the book. Although I was familiar with Ms. Green's previous work reading news updates on the Fox News channel, with this interview many others are probably seeing her for the first time. The word "inauspicious" comes to mind.

Reza Aslan's interview with Lauren Green has proved to be a win-win for him. In addition to thoroughly schooling Ms. Green, Aslan has seen sales of Zealot: The Life and Times of Jesus of Nazareth skyrocket. While it was selling steadily before the interview, as I write this post it is the #1 book on Amazon.com.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Victoria Jackson Voices Her Concerns About Communism to Bill O'Reilly

As readers of this blog may recall, I have occasionally done humor-based posts called "Sunday Funnies". Now today's post has its share of humor, but it's of the unintentional variety. Recently, Bill O'Reilly did an interview with actress/comedian Victoria Jackson in which she discussed her political evolution. If you're familiar with Ms. Jackson's actions over the last few years, you know what to expect. At any rate, here is what she gave us:

Her rantings are so obviously off the charts that it's pointless to waste time debunking them. In the aftermath of her appearance on The O'Reilly Factor, Ms. Jackson wrote an article on her website in which she discusses how her segment was deceptively edited by someone at Fox News. When I first watched the segment, I was puzzled by Ms. Jackson's reference to "them" when she was talking about communists. It appears she was referring to her children, but Fox News apparently edited this out. If this is true, Fox News made Ms. Jackson look like a paranoid lunatic for thinking there are communists in our government who are going to kill her for being a Christian. If we are to believe Ms. Jackson was the victim of deceptive editing, she's only a paranoid lunatic for thinking there are communists in our government who are going to kill her kids for being Christians. Ms. Jackson also mentions that her comments about books which prove President Obama is a communist were edited out as well. If that's true, the folks at the Factor may have done her a favor by leaving that nonsense on the cutting room floor.

We often hear conservatives (in particular, the ones at Fox) slam Hollywood for its liberalism. However, these same people cannot wait to line up and kiss the proverbial asses of Hollywood conservatives. Since Fox's raison d'etre is to promote the Republican/conservative brand, you'd think they would do a better job of featuring prominent and credible Hollywood conservatives. Although I disagree with their politics, I haven't heard anything outrageous from the likes of Kelsey Grammer and Gary Sinise. Why not invite them on more often? Maybe Fox has and their calls aren't being returned, I don't know. At any rate, how is Fox News advancing Republicanism/conservatism by giving the time of day to a washed up D-lister (at best) with zero credibility like Victoria Jackson? 

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Guest Post: Which Group is Most Identified With Being More Racist Than Others? The Answer May Surprise You

One of the goals of Progressive Soup is to allow people with differing viewpoints on a variety of issues to share them here. Last week, I came across a blog post (Which Group is Most Identified With Being More Racist Than Others? The Answer May Surprise You) about a recent Rasmussen poll on race. When I contacted the blogger (Teresa) to see if I could use it as a guest post here, she gave her consent. For a wording of the Rasmussen poll's survey questions, click here

This was posted by Teresa on her blog on July 6, 2013:

According to a poll more citizens believe blacks are more racist than whites or Hispanics. The poll revealed that a person's political affiliation played much more of a role in feelings towards various races rather than a person's ethnicity.

The poll's findings: "Overall, 37 percent of Americans feel that black Americans are the most racist among the three ethnic groups, 15 percent feel that whites are and 18 percent think Hispanics are." 

Do you think this poll is accurate? And accurately reflects the feelings and perceptions of the various groups of Americans?  The only thing I'll say is if blacks are brought up to believe they are a victim then they are buying into the false notion that they're not as good or can't be as good as people of other ethnicities. If blacks accept victim status then jealousy could breed resentment, which could ultimately lead to hatred and misconceptions about other races. But being taught to hate can happen within any ethnicity or race.  From my perspective I see a majority of the mob violence and hate coming from blacks and gang members which consist of a variety of races.

Monday, July 15, 2013

The Retro Mix Playlist for 7/13/13: Freedom Rock

Show Theme: Peace and Protest Songs from the 60s and early 70s

Normally I wouldn't post my radio show playlists here. However, because of theme of my show last Saturday, I thought I'd share it.

Hour 1

War- Edwin Starr
Mother Freedom- Bread
Lay Down (Candles in the Rain)- Melanie
Give Peace a Chance- John Lennon (Plastic Ono Band)
Blowin’ in the Wind- Bob Dylan
Chicago- Graham Nash
Bring the Boys Home- Freda Payne
People Got to Be Free- The Rascals

In Concert segment:
What Have They Done to the Rain- Joan Baez (rec. live in 1962)

Eve of Destruction- Barry McGuire
(For God’s Sake) Give More Power to the People- The Chi Lites
Ball of Confusion (That’s What the World Is Today)- The Temptations
Now That the Buffalo’s Gone- Buffy Sainte-Marie
Turn, Turn, Turn- The Byrds
Fortunate Son- CCR
We Gotta All Get Together- Paul Revere & the Raiders

Hour 2

What’s Goin’ On- Marvin Gaye
The Revolution Will Not Be Televised- Gil Scott-Heron
Reach Out of the Darkness- Friend & Lover
Ohio- Crosby, Stills, Nash, & Young
Peace Train- Cat Stevens
Say It Loud-I’m Black and I’m Proud- James Brown
We’re a Winner- The Impressions
2+2=?- The Bob Seger System
Black and White- Three Dog Night

The Greatest Miss of the Week:
I Should Be Proud- Martha Reeves & the Vandellas (only reached #80 on the Billboard Hot 100)

Time Has Come Today- The Chambers Brothers
Signs- The Five Man Electrical Band
A Change Is Gonna Come- Sam Cooke
Handsome Johnny- Richie Havens
One Tin Soldier- Coven
Volunteers- Jefferson Airplane

Hour 3

Get Together- The Youngbloods
Laugh at Me- Sonny Bono
Everyday People- Sly & the Family Stone
Friendship Train- Gladys Knight & the Pips
I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing- The New Seekers
I Ain’t Marching Anymore- Phil Ochs
This Land Is Your Land- Peter, Paul, & Mary
Hallelujah Day- The Jackson Five
Save the Country- The 5th Dimension
For What It’s Worth (Stop, Hey What’s That Sound)- Buffalo Springfield
Something in the Air- Thunderclap Newman
Stoned Love- The Supremes
If 6 Was 9- The Jimi Hendrix Experience
Let’s Work Together- Canned Heat
Student Demonstration Time- The Beach Boys
All You Need Is Love- The Beatles

Did any of your favorite peace and protest songs from the 60s and early 70s make the playlist? What are some of your favorite peace and protest songs from that era which didn't make the playlist?

The Retro Mix Video of the Week: Volunteers by Jefferson Airplane

Sunday, July 14, 2013

More Thoughts on the George Zimmerman/Trayvon Martin Case

Last night, George Zimmerman was found not guilty in the death of Travyon Martin. Zimmerman's supporters and his detractors will never come to a consensus on his guilt or innocence. However, one thing we should all be able to agree on is that only two people know for sure what happened on the fateful night of February 26, 2012 and one of them isn't in the position to give his side of the story. 

One of the sad aspects of this case is how it became a left-right issue. I think it turned into one because of the involvement of the Rev. Al Sharpton and the comments made by President Barack Obama. Just to be clear, I don't think the actions and/or words of these men made it a political issue. It was how these actions and words were interpreted by many on the right which turned it into one. Because many on the right have a dislike/hatred for the Rev. Sharpton and President Obama, I think they automatically took what they perceived to be the opposite side. What many on the right seemed to have missed is that the Rev. Sharpton only became involved after being contacted by the lawyer for Travyon's family. It's not like he was combing the internet and thumbing through newspapers looking for a case in which the victim was black. Also, the Rev. Sharpton took action and President Obama said what he said (only after being asked to comment by a reporter) because they wanted justice to be served... which is perfectly understandable. 

"If anybody watching this show -- either live or on the Internet -- doesn’t believe that if an African-American shot a 17-year-old white boy walking through a neighborhood carrying ice tea and Skittles…if they do not believe that an arraignment would be scheduled by the next morning for the African-American shooter and that the white boy’s family would be called immediately…that an office would actually drive to the white boy’s home and sit down with the parents on the couch and console them because they have lost a 17-year-old son. If you don’t believe that this case and the handling of this case by the people in Florida has nothing to do with race, you are living in a fantasy world."- Joe Scarborough, 3/21/12

Here's my question for the righties: If one of your loved ones was killed and the killer was still walking the streets, wouldn't you want some answers?

With the not guilty verdict, the NRA folks must be dancing in the streets. I don't know about you, but I don't feel safe in those streets... especially if I was in Florida. You think I'm kidding?!

Monday, July 1, 2013

A Liberal Pundit and a GOP Politician Face Off on the Gay Marriage Debate

On Saturday night's installment of the Fox News program Geraldo at Large, liberal pundit Sally Kohn and Congressman Tim Walberg (R-MI) debated the issue of gay marriage. Their discussion stood out to me (in a positive way) for a couple of reasons. Too often, debates on cable news devolve into shouting matches that are more befitting the WWE. I think that Ms. Kohn made some excellent points and did so logically. Although I disagree with Rep. Walberg's stance on this issue, he stated his case in a calm manner. It was also refreshing to see Rivera stick to just moderating the debate. What normally happens is that the host will pick a side and it turns into a 2 against 1 scuffle. Although I can understand the temptation for a host to jump into the fray of a 1-on-1 debate, it's better when they leave it to their guests to engage with one another.

What are your thoughts on the debate between Ms. Kohn and Rep. Walberg?

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Cheerios Ad Featuring An Interracial Family Generates Appreciation and Controversy

From l-r: Grace Colbert, Whitney Avalon, and Charles Malik Whitfield
A recent Cheerios commercial featuring a bi-racial family has elicited strong reactions, both pro and con. In the commercial (which you can watch below), a child (Grace Colbert) asks her mother (Whitney Avalon) if it's true that Cheerios is good for the heart. After her mother confirms it is, the child does her part to ensure her father (Charles Malik Whitfield) has a healthy heart. In addition to being thoroughly pleased to see an interracial family being portrayed in an ad, I also thought the commercial was brilliant in its simplicity.

Most of the reactions to the commercial have been positive, with people echoing thoughts similar to mine. However, the ad has predictably brought out the bigotry in some people. According to an article on the website Adweek, the comments section of the You Tube clip posted by Cheerios was littered with references to Nazis (wtf?!) and racial genocide (again, wtf?!). The backlash has caused Cheerios to disable the comments on the clip. On Cheerios' Facebook page, commenters stated they found the ad "disgusting" and that it made them "want to vomit". Although Cheerios has closed the comments section on the clip they posted, you can still "like" or "dislike" it. If a count of "likes" and "dislikes" is any indication, love is trouncing hate. As of this writing, the You Tube clip posted by Cheerios had 19,302 likes as opposed to only 1,323 dislikes.

The Cheerios' ad is the latest in a developing trend in which interracial relationships are being portrayed in advertising. Although the Cheerios' spot is obviously not the first U.S. commercial to feature an interracial couple,  it's the first one I can recall which features a black-white interracial couple AND their child. In addition to the links below which feature interracial couples in commercials, I've also noticed in-store ads at my local Target which reflect this change in society.

Apple iPhone

Bank of America ad touting cash back deals

Philadelphia Cream Cheese

The Cheerios commercial and others like it are reflecting the growing trend of interracial marriages in the U.S. With the rise in interracial marriages, it makes sense for companies to create ads which represent this expanding demographic. Sorry bigots, get used to it!

There was a time when seeing minorities on TV was practically an event. I've heard stories of how black people would alert their neighbors/relatives and huddle around the TV when someone like the Supremes would appear on The Ed Sullivan Show. Now, it's not a huge deal. I look forward to the day when interracial couples in advertising becomes just as commonplace.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Sunday Funnies: Highlights from the 2013 White House Correspondent's Dinner

On Saturday April 27th, the annual White House Correspondents' Dinner was held at the Hilton Hotel in D.C. Below are the speeches given by President Obama and WHCD host Conan O'Brien. Enjoy!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Michele Bachmann Runs From the Truth

In the "Keeping Them Honest" segment of his CNN show, Anderson Cooper shines a spotlight on people in the media who have issues presenting factual statements. In a segment this week, he called out Rep. Michele Bachmann for comments she made about spending in the Obama administration in her speech at the recent CPAC. Rep. Michele Bachmann's retreat from Dana Bash's questions is one of the funniest I've seen in awhile. Although funny on the surface, it does point out a serious problem... Bachmann's detachment from the facts and how she reacts when confronted with tough questions. I think Dana may want to invest in some Nikes for any future encounters she has with Rep. Bachmann.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Rob Portman's Flip-Flop On Gay Rights

On March 14, 2013, Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) announced he had changed his stance on same-sex marriage. The change came as a result of his son Will coming out as gay to Portman and his wife in 2011. Before this, Sen. Portman's opposition to gay rights was reflected in his voting record. He co-sponsored the 1996 federal ban on same-sex marriage and in 1999 voted for a measure prohibiting same-sex couples in Washington, D.C. from adopting children. You can watch an exclusive interview with CNN in which Sen. Portman discusses changing his stance on same-sex marriage.

While I'm glad Sen. Portman has come over to my side on this issue, his change in stance seems hollow. Usually when it comes to social issues, it seems the only time conservatives can consider another perspective is when it affects them. One exception which comes to mind is when Rep. State Representative Maureen Walsh made a plea to fellow legislators about same-sex marriage in 2012. Even in that case, it's fair to question whether or not Rep. Walsh's feelings about same-sex marriage were changed by her daughter coming out as gay. However, whereas Walsh's speech was full of passion, humor and honesty, Portman came off as robotic and political.

Here is my question for conservatives: Why does it seem your side has to be personally affected by an issue in order to consider another perspective?

In the clip below, The Majority Report host Sam Seder (sitting on the right) and guest Cliff Schecter discuss Sen. Portman and other instances of conservative politicians changing their stance on positions only after they are affected personally by an issue.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Bill Maher's Response to ODS and the Politicization of Everything

I found this on Facebook today so I thought I'd share it here. When I heard that Michelle Obama had made a surprise appearance (via satellite) during the recent Oscar telecast, I knew some on the right would go on the attack. Sadly, some people have to make damn near everything political.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

A Tale of Two Michel(l)es

During her husband's race for the White House in 2008, soon-to-be First Lady Michelle Obama made a controversial comment about her being proud of her country for the first time in her adult life.  In the 2011 clip below, Melissa Harris-Perry discusses how the media portrayed Ms. Obama's comments vs. similar ones made by Republican congresswoman Michele Bachmann. You may be wondering why I'm posting about a topic that should be dead and buried. The reason is because while most people have either forgiven or forgotten about Michelle's statements, people on the right like my good friend "dmarks" can't let it go.

Here's my question for the righties who continue to trash Michelle Obama for this: How is what she said any different from the comments made by Congresswoman Bachmann?

By the way, happy belated 49th birthday to Ms. Obama (who is rocking the bangs quite nicely).

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Monday, January 14, 2013

Colin Powell Discusses the Problems of the GOP

On the January 13th edition of Meet the Press, David Gregory questioned Colin Powell on whether or not he's still a Republican. Along with saying he still is, Powell also outlined why he thinks the GOP has lost it's way. Among the reasons Powell discussed were Romney surrogate John Sununu referring to President Obama as “lazy” and Sarah Palin accusing the president of shucking and jiving in regards to the Sept. 11 2012 attack against a U.S. diplomatic mission in Libya. You can watch the segment below:

Colin Powell could have gone on, but don't fault him. After all, he only had approx. 30 minutes. Sadly, Powell seems to be the exception instead of the rule when it comes to prominent Republicans. The far right will likely dismiss his comments, label him a RINO, etc. However, unless the GOP wants to continue losing national elections, they'll listen to him. There are solid reasons why Mitt Romney lost to President Obama and no it's not the fault of the so-called mainstream media or any other BS excuse conservatives have used. The GOP is in trouble, but it can be fixed. So in the words of the Captain (played by Strother Martin) in the movie Cool Hand Luke, my message to the GOP is simple: "It's all up to you".