Conservative media figures have distorted comments President Obama made during Senate hearings in 2007 to accuse him of "chastising" and "excoriating" Gen. David Petraeus, who he recently tapped as the top commander in Afghanistan. In fact, during the hearing, Obama specifically said his criticism was directed at former President Bush, not Petraeus.
This morning, we noted ABC World News' apparently faulty reporting on how Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal is lambasting the federal government for ordering 16 barges to stop vacuuming crude oil off his state's coast. As we wrote, the report ABC aired on the June 17 edition of World News left viewers with the impression that the clueless Coast Guard had ordered the barges temporarily grounded for no reason at all, giving weight to Jindal's assertions and reinforcing claims that the federal government has been botching this operation from Day 1. In its online report, however, ABCNews.com included this little nugget:
[T]he Coast Guard ordered the stoppage because of reasons that Jindal found frustrating. The Coast Guard needed to confirm that there were fire extinguishers and life vests on board, and then it had trouble contacting the people who built the barges.
Today, the Daily Caller's Jonathan Strong further reported:
Sixteen crude-sucking barges are back in the Gulf of Mexico working to clean up oil, but the Coast Guard is defending its decision to ground the vessels because it couldn't verify whether there were fire extinguishers and life vests on board.
"The Coast Guard is not going to compromise safety ... that's our No. 1 priority," Coast Guard spokesman Robert Brassel told The Daily Caller.
Brassel said the barges are now "back in operating order."
On Thursday night, the Incident Commander in Houma, Roger Laferriere, decided with the captain of the port in New Orleans to inspect the barges when they realized the ships did not have a certificate of inspection to demonstrate safety equipment on board. Thursday morning, the ships were inspected and grounded because they did not have the proper fire-fighting and life-saving equipment. There were also concerns about the stability of the barges. During the day Thursday, the problems were fixed, and the barges are back out on the water today.
So let me see if I've got this straight: The Coast Guard says that while they were just as concerned with the urgency of the situation as any entity out there on the water, they didn't want to take a gamble on workers' safety and demanded that proper procedures be taken to ensure against the very real possibility of another Gulf catastrophe -- barges catching on fire.
But thanks to ABC's apparently flawed reporting, conservatives are outraged that this is just another show of red tape from the government.
Heckuva job, ABC.
Glenn Beck misrepresented comments President Obama made during a 1995 interview to claim Obama did not want to meet with BP CEO Tony Hayward because he is a "white CEO" and that those comments were "code language" that "sounds like racism," "stereotyping," and "profiling." However, as Obama's full comments make clear, he was actually discussing personal responsibility on the part of both blacks and whites.
Bret Baier reported that the Clinton Presidential Library recently released documents relating to Elena Kagan's work in the Clinton administration but that "[t]he library is withholding some of those documents." Baier did not mention that the documents have reportedly been made available to the Senate Judiciary Committee.
On his Christian Broadcasting Network show tonight, Pat Robertson saw fit to give advice to a woman who said her husband's "actions" are "starting to get to" her, fearing that he may soon start to cheat because he "loves to talk with other women he finds attractive." Robertson, whose views on marriage and women have been fairly well documented, replied: "Anne, first thing is you need to make yourself as attractive as possible and don't hassle him about it."
But wait, there's more. He also advised the woman that she needs to make sure "to not drive [her husband] away or start hassling and hounding on him" and added: "[M]ake yourself as beautiful as you can, as fun as you can, and say let's go out here, let's go there, let's go to the other thing."
From tonight's edition of The 700 Club:
TERRY MEEUWSEN (co-host): Pat, this is from Anne who says, "My husband has always been a flirt and loves to talk with other women he finds attractive. He says he would never cheat on me but his actions are starting to get to me. What should I do?
ROBERTSON: Anne, first thing is you need to make yourself as attractive as possible and don't hassle him about it. And why is he doing this? Well, he's doing it because he wants affirmation that he is still a man, that he is attractive -- and he gets an affirmation of himself. That means he's got an inferiority complex that's coming out. And he's not gonna cheat on you. He's just playing.
But you need to not drive him away or start hassling and hounding on him, but make yourself as beautiful as you can, as fun as you can, and say let's go out here, let's go there, let's go to the other thing. So -- and Terry disagrees.
MEEUWSEN: That's a lot more grace than I do, Anne. Let me just say we'd be having a serious conversation.
ROBERTSON: Affirmation. Affirmation, dear heart.
This really shouldn't surprise anyone, considering Robertson has reportedly stated that once women get married -- as "painful" as it is "for the ladies to hear" -- "you have accepted the headship of a man, your husband. Christ is the head of the household and the husband is the head of the wife, and that's the way it is, period." He has also claimed that "the feminist agenda is not about equal rights for women. It is about a socialist, anti-family political movement that encourages women to leave their husbands, kill their children, practice witchcraft, destroy capitalism and become lesbians." Robertson has also reportedly written that "[w]omen should listen and learn quietly and submissively," and "I do not let women teach men or have authority over them."
Robertson made headlines in January for saying that Haitians had been hit with a major earthquake because they had "swor[n] a pact to the devil" to get "free from the French" and that "ever since, they have been cursed."
Sean Hannity falsely claimed that Andrew Romanoff, who is running against incumbent Sen. Michael Bennet in Colorado's U.S. Senate election, "is confirming just now tonight he was offered a position" if he would exit the race. In fact, Romanoff reportedly stated: "At no time was I promised a job, nor did I request [White House deputy chief of staff Jim] Messina's assistance in obtaining one."
Linking to conservative website Newsmax, Fox falsely claimed President Obama has held "no press conference[s] since July" and suggested he is "hiding." In fact, Obama has held two full press conferences this year and held numerous other press availabilities.
It's unclear whether Republican strategist Bay Buchanan has read any of Elena Kagan's law review articles or gone through any of her judicial essays, but discussing Kagan's nomination on last night's Larry King Live, it was pretty clear Buchanan doesn't think Kagan, who was confirmed last year as solicitor general and served as dean of Harvard Law School for several years, is smart enough to serve on the Supreme Court. "The question I think," she began, "is: How did she get tenure in these good universities when she doesn't write?" She added: "There's nothing there. She's a blank sheet."
Well, conservative-leaning attorney Eugene Volokh, who runs the blog, The Volokh Conspiracy, has read Kagan's scholarship and has examined her career as a scholar. Unlike Buchanan, Volokh concludes that Kagan "is a successful scholar" and while "she hasn't written as much as she would have had she only been interested in scholarship," that "reflects the breadth of her interests, and not any intellectual limitations."
Right-wing media are claiming that as dean of Harvard University Law School, Elena Kagan covered up incidents in which "two liberal law professors" were accused of plagiarism. In fact, Harvard investigated the allegations and found no deliberate wrongdoing, and there is no evidence that the findings were motivated by politics.
Suggesting that recent protests against Arizona's new immigration law are unreasonable, Fox & Friends claimed the United States naturalized "a lot of people" from Mexico in 2009. However, immigration policy experts have pointed out that the U.S. immigration system offers very few channels for legal entry for low-skilled workers, who are drawn to the country by the demand in the labor market.