Benghazi! House Republicans cut Funding for Embassy Security !

Oct 10, 2012 by    

     Rep. Chaffetz defends his criticism of the handling of Libyan consulate security despite voting to cut embassy funding.
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Media Matters for America : Myth or Reality

Media Matters for America

The moment of truth for media is when myth and fact collide. Are they going to stick with a false notion, damn the facts? Or are they going to be honest? This week we’re focusing on these moments and the different choices media made.

John Whitehouse Twitter: @existentialfish

Right-Wing Libya Mythology “Absolutely” Falls Apart

Media too often ‘leave it there’ when it comes to hypocrisy. So when Rep. Jason Chaffetz tried to criticize the Obama administration for Benghazi, Soledad O’Brien might have just gotten Chaffetz’s opinion and moved on. Instead, she challenged Chaffetz with his hypocrisy, noting that Chaffetz and other House Republicans actually voted to cut funding for embassy security. We need more media challenging hypocrisy and not promoting politicians. Click to see O’Brien make a stand for honesty:

Here Is Your “Statesman”

In a video recently unearthed by Mother Jones, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney introduces Glenn Beck in a May 2009 event as a “statesman.” Oliver Willis looks back at Beck‘s time at Fox to ascertain just how inapt this characterization is. Even knowing how Beck’s story at Fox ends, the reminder of his record is still unsettling:

Flashback: What You Need To Know About Paul Ryan

The media coverage of Paul Ryan often leans towards the superficial. You’ve heard about his hunting, his exercsie routine, and other trivialities that don’t make a dimes worth of difference as to what policies he advocates. When Ryan was selected as VP, Media Matters investigative reporter Joe Strupp spoke to reporters in Wisconsin about what they know of Paul Ryan. In a flashback special, find out what those who know Paul Ryan best want you to know:

Turning The President Into A Fantasy Character

The Washington Post‘s Jennifer Rubin imagined a different version of the Obama administration compared to “reality.” But Rubin’s version is completely ahistorical. Simon Maloy deconstructs Rubin’s fantasy, compares it to what actually did happen, and explains how it fits into the right-wing myth of Obama as a scary left-wing ideologue:

When Media Label The Truth A Lie

‘Both sides do it!’ You’ve probably heard some variation of that saying in media election coverage. But in the rush to accuse both sides of lying in the presidential debate, analysts on CBS and ABC Sunday morning shows labelled true statements of President Obama as lies. This sort of false balance prevents the public from being well-informed. Get the truth:


Mary Matalin tried to push the right-wing myth that this is the “worst recovery in history.” But Nobel laureate Paul Krugman wasn’t having it, calling the assertion “spectacularly not true.” Watch Krugman debunk the notion once and for all:


As CNN experts have explained, gas prices rise because of rising global demand. But you might not know that if you only watched the network’s prime time shows, during which Erin Burnett and Piers Morgan irresponsibly posit a connection between drilling and gas prices. Get the facts:


George Romney made it a point to release years of tax returns, saying “one year could be a fluke, perhaps done for show.” So when The Wall Street Journal compared the campaigns of father and son, it’s revealing that they omitted the biggest distinction: that Mitt Romney has not released that many years of taxes. What doesn’t theJournal want us to know?


What The Right-Wing Media Isn’t Telling You About Voting

Think Fast …


Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) will file a friend-of-the-court brief in the multi-state lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of health care reform , Politico reports. McConnell argues in his brief that the reforms “dramatically oversteps the bounds of the Commerce [Clause] which has always been understood as a power to regulate, and not to compel, economic activity.”

Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) said yesterday that he will challenge McConnell and other “old guard” Republicans over earmarks that DeMint and other Tea Party-backed Republicans campaigned to eliminate. “Americans want Congress to shut down the earmark favor factory, and next week I believe House and Senate Republicans will unite to stop pork barrel spending,” DeMint said.

As President Bush begins his public relations campaign for his new memoir, Gallup finds that his approval ratings have increased marginally. Bush receives a 44 percent favorable rating, up slightly from 40 percent in January 2009.

In a news conference in Indonesia yesterday, President Obama said that, even with the “earnest and sustained” efforts, the U.S. must do “a lot more work” to improve ties with Muslims around the world. “We don’t expect that we are going to completely eliminate some of the misunderstandings and mistrust that have developed over a long period of time, but we do think that we’re on the right path,” Obama said.

Middle East peace talks may be in jeopardy following a sharp dispute between President Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over expanded Israeli settlements in East Jerusalem. After Israel announced the settlements yesterday, Obama said in Indonesia that such actions were “never helpful,” while Netanyahu later fired back that “Jerusalem is not a settlement.”

A special prosecutor “ cleared the CIA’s former top clandestine officer and others Tuesday of any charges for destroying agency videotapes showing waterboarding of terror suspects but he continued to investigate whether the harsh questioning went beyond legal boundaries.” CIA Director Leon Panetta said the Agency welcomes the decision and will continue to cooperate with the Justice Department.

Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY) yesterday called for “a full, independent investigation” in to the possible “criminal use of torture” under President Bush. “I am outraged by President Bush’s own admission in his newly released memoir that he personally authorized the use of waterboarding,” Nadler said. Republican Rep. Jason Chaffetz (UT) also said yesterday that he is willing to investigate Bush’s use of torture.

Senior GOP officials are “maneuvering” to pressure RNC Chair Michael Steele to not seek re-election when his term ends in January or, “failing that, to encourage a challenger to step forward to take him on.” Gov. Haley Barbour’s nephew, Henry Barbour, is “leading the effort” and House and Senate Minority Leaders John Boehner (R-OH) and Mitch McConnell (R-KY) both said they’d “prefer a new chairman as well.”

And finally: A spokesman for Alec Baldwin denied rumors that the actor is planning to run for Congress , but did leave the door open a bit, saying yesterday, “Alec is interested in politics and public service, but now is not the time.” Republican Randy Altschuler, who ran against Rep. Tim Bishop (D-NY) in Baldwin’s district, said he would look forward to running against Baldwin: “I actually like his TV show,” 30 Rock.

Think Fast …


Halliburton and BP knew that the Deepwater Horizon rig was facing serious structural problems before the April 20 blowout, according to the presidential commission investigating the accident. The commission staff determined that Halliburton conducted tests indicating that the cement at the rig was not up to industry standards, but did not take action.

According to the Pentagon’s DADT survey findings reported yesterday, a majority of service members “would not object to serving and living alongside openly gay troops.” The survey’s results will be included in the Pentagon’s report for President Obama on December 1 regarding how the military would end the DADT policy.

The EPA has again delayed a decision on whether to adopt tougher smog standards, a proposal that was opposed by oil refiners, manufacturers, and some Democrats running for office. The decision, scheduled for Sunday, has been put off indefinitely, and an EPA spokesman said the department was “working to ensure we get it right.”

Unemployment claims dropped sharply last week, by 21,000 claims — the biggest drop in unemployment claims in any week since July.

Yesterday, the government announced it had spent a record $80.1 billion on intelligence activities in the last year, an increase of nearly 7 percent over the previous year. In its first disclosure of both the civilian intelligence agencies and military budgets, the Defense Department said “no program details will be released.”

Colorado gubernatorial candidate Tom Tancredo said this week that President Obama is a greater threat to the U.S. than al-Qaida. Speaking with voters in a local coffee shop, Tancredo said, “It’s not al-Qaida, it’s the guy sitting in the White House.”

Former Alaska governor Sarah Palin opened the door slightly to a run for president in 2012, telling Entertainment Tonight that she would put her hat in the ring “if there’s nobody else to do it.” She said she’ll take a “real close look at the lay of the land” to see “whether there are already candidates out there who can do the job and I’ll get to be their biggest supporter and biggest helpmate if they will have me.”

And finally: Early yesterday morning while Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) was driving, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood called him with an urgent message: “You shouldn’t be on the phone while you are driving.” Actually, LaHood — who has launched a major campaign to urge people not to use cell phones while driving — was calling to say that Chaffetz’ district had been awarded a $500,000 federal grant for an airport, but he would only deliver the news after Chaffetz put in his hands free Bluetooth device