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Politics and Media Headlines 1/26/09

Caro's picture

Obama taking attention away from where it belongs: the White House press corps (23/6)
Worried that the press was gonna give Obama a free ride? Rest easy: they're already all up in his face.

Trust Me, I'm A Journalist: Trust In The Media Promotes Health (Science Daily)
A study of people from 29 Asian countries has shown that individuals with high levels of trust in the mass media tend to be healthier.
So trust the media… OR ELSE!—Caro

They must not have an equivalent of Fox News in Asia:
The Right-Wing Media and the Politics of Vitriol
(Columbia Journalism Review)
Few people who did not regularly tune in to the vast, churning combine of bellowing radio hosts, yapping bloggers, obnoxious Web sites, malicious columnists, and the slashingly partisan Fox News have any idea of just how vile and venomous were the attacks leveled at Obama. Day after day, week after week, these outlets worked determinedly to discredit and degrade Obama, accusing him of being a Muslim, a Marxist, a radical, a revolutionary, a socialist, a communist, a thug, a mobster, a racist, an agent of voter fraud, a black-power advocate, a madrasah graduate, an anti-Semite, an enemy of Israel, an associate of terrorists—even the Antichrist. Supplemented by a flood of viral e-mails, slanderous robocalls, and Internet-based smear campaigns, these media outlets worked to stoke firestorms of manufactured rage against Obama and the Democrats in what was perhaps the most concerted campaign of vilification ever directed at an American politician.

In light of Obama’s victory, one might be tempted to let it all pass. That would be a mistake. For the effects of that campaign remain with us. What’s more, the campaign itself is still going on.
Here’s a difference between the Hillary haters and me. I’ve defended Obama against these right-wing attacks. A lot of so-called progressives, however, used the 16 years of stupid lies and hate perpetrated against Hillary to perpetrate even more hate against her.—Caro

In first weekly address, Obama pushes economic stimulus plan (McClatchy)
President Barack Obama on Saturday pitched Americans on more details of an economic stimulus plan that could exceed $825 billion, hoping he can ease Republican resistance in Congress by building public support for spending on items as varied as health coverage, port security and home weatherization.

Bad Faith Economics (by Paul Krugman)
As the debate over President Obama’s economic stimulus plan gets under way, one thing is certain: many of the plan’s opponents aren’t arguing in good faith. Conservatives really, really don’t want to see a second New Deal, and they certainly don’t want to see government activism vindicated. So they are reaching for any stick they can find with which to beat proposals for increased government spending… But the obvious cheap shots don’t pose as much danger to the Obama administration’s efforts to get a plan through as arguments and assertions that are equally fraudulent but can seem superficially plausible... So as a public service, let me try to debunk some of the major antistimulus arguments... Any time you hear someone reciting one of these arguments, write him or her off as a dishonest flack.
Click through to get your ammunition.—Caro

Pelosi dispels conservative critics' "tax cuts for people who don't pay taxes" myth (video at County Fair, Media Matters for America)

Nurses Organization Presents Single Payer Health Economic Stimulus Plan (by masslib at Alegre's Corner)
The Nation reports a new study by the the National Nurses Organizing Committee/California Nurses Association suggests a single payer health plan could put the country on the road to massive economic recovery, not to mention provide health security to every man, woman and child in America.

Top Dem: No comprehensive health reform this year (The Hill)
A prominent House Democrat said he doesn't expect a comprehensive healthcare reform bill to pass Congress in 2009, saying an incremental approach to covering the uninsured would be better "than to go out and just bite something you can't chew." House Majority Whip James Clyburn's (D-S.C.) timeline on tackling healthcare is at odds with the timetable proposed by Senate Democrats and could represent a major shift in the House Democrats' strategy of dealing with the uninsured.

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Carolyn Kay

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