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  • Who made the list of the ’13 biggest media feuds of 2013′?
    Posted December 16, 2013 at 5:15 pm by Meredith Jessup

    Comments (1)

    Mediaite has narrowed the field down to 13 of its favorites from the past year. Not surprisingly, MSNBC commands quite a few of the top spots.

    CNN’s Jake Tapper almost feels left out…

    Good Guy Tapper even keeps his cool even when Piers Morgan tries to bait him:

    Better luck next year, Jake.

    Related: Glenn Beck says Tapper is “fantastic and fair”

  • Gay mag names Pope ‘Person of the Year’
    Posted December 16, 2013 at 5:00 pm by Eddie Scarry

    Comments (3)

    It’s not quite as consequential as being named Time magazine’s “Person of the Year,” but…

    The Advocate names Pope Person of the Year

    via The Advocate

    The Advocate, a lifestyle magazine for gay men, has named Pope Francis its own POTY.

    An excerpt:

    Pope Francis is leader of 1.2 billion Roman Catholics all over the world. There are three times as many Catholics in the world than there are citizens in the United States. Like it or not, what he says makes a difference. Sure, we all know Catholics who fudge on the religion’s rules about morality. There’s a lot of disagreement, about the role of women, about contraception, and more. But none of that should lead us to underestimate any pope’s capacity for persuading hearts and minds in opening to LGBT people, and not only in the U.S. but globally. …

    Francis’s view on how the Catholic Church should approach LGBT people was best explained in his own words during an in-depth interview with America magazine in September. He recalled, “A person once asked me, in a provocative manner, if I approved of homosexuality. I replied with another question: ‘Tell me: when God looks at a gay person, does he endorse the existence of this person with love, or reject and condemn this person?’ We must always consider the person.”

    Of course, Francis did receive the same designation from Time.

  • ‘Waffles the Terrible’ attempts jump from snow-covered car…and fails
    Posted December 16, 2013 at 4:45 pm by Oliver Darcy

    Comments (3)

    A video uploaded to YouTube on Sunday shows a 7-month-old kitten try and fail to leap off a snow-covered car.

    “Waffles the Terrible,” as he’s named, can be seen preparing for the jump, but after leaping he “nosedives past his destination.”

    According to the video’s description, “He is named Waffles the Terrible because he just is.”

    At the time of publication, the video has just under 20k views.

    Watch the video:


    Follow Oliver Darcy (@oliverdarcy) on Twitter

  • Ed Schlutz decries ‘envy on the left,’ denies being ‘money-grubbing pig’
    Posted December 16, 2013 at 4:31 pm by Eddie Scarry

    Comments (7)

    From Salon:

    MSNBC host Ed Schultz took to his radio show for a third consecutive time Monday to slam his critics, following media attention to his show’s financial support from unions and Salon’s reporting last week on his handling of a labor dispute at NBC. Decrying unspecified “flat-out lies” and “all kinds of envy on the left,” Schultz told listeners his “one-percenter” status was no secret, and said of unnamed critics, “That was my mistake, by ever just acknowledging that they breathe air.”

    “I am being made out to be some money-grubbing pig that doesn’t care about workers, which is absolutely erroneous,” Schultz told listeners. Without directly addressing alleged union-busting by NBC Universal-owned Peacock Productions, which workers have asked MNSBC prime-time hosts to condemn, Schultz said, “My position with workers is unparalleled by anyone with this position in the media … That’s the truth.”

    It was reported last week that union members who work under the NBC umbrella have sought the support of Schultz and other MSNBC primetime talent to combat alleged union-busting efforts by company bosses. Schultz, an outspoken supporter of unions, has apparently not come out as an ally.

    Schultz has received approximately $250,000 from unions since 2012.

  • Climate change ‘expert’ pleads guilty to bizarre ‘crime of massive proportion’
    Posted December 16, 2013 at 4:15 pm by Meredith Jessup

    Comments (1)

    Settle in, folks.  This one‘s a doozy:

    The EPA’s highest-paid employee and a leading expert on climate change deserves to go to prison for at least 30 months for lying to his bosses and saying he was a CIA spy working in Pakistan so he could avoid doing his real job, say federal prosecutors.

    John C. Beale, who pled guilty in September to bilking the government out of nearly $1 million in salary and other benefits  over a decade, will be sentenced in a Washington, D.C., federal court on Wednesday. In a newly filed sentencing memo, prosecutors said that his lies were a “crime of massive proportion” that were “offensive” to those who actually do dangerous work for the CIA.

    Beale’s lawyer, while acknowledging his guilt, has asked for leniency and offered a psychological explanation for the climate expert’s bizarre tales.

    “With the help of his therapist,” wrote attorney John Kern, “Mr. Beale has come to recognize that, beyond the motive of greed, his theft and deception were animated by a highly self-destructive and dysfunctional need to engage in excessively reckless, risky behavior.” Kern also said Beale was driven “to manipulate those around him through the fabrication of grandiose narratives … that are fueled by his insecurities.

    In other words… he’s a liberal. (more…)

  • Cartoon: A picture-perfect Christmas
    Posted December 16, 2013 at 3:39 pm by Meredith Jessup

    Comments (5)

    A.F. Branco nails it:

    Cartoon: A picture perfect Christmas

    h/t Legal Insurrection

  • Headline of the Day
    Posted December 16, 2013 at 2:51 pm by Meredith Jessup

    Comments (1)

    Via conservativebro. Granted this is a progressive newspaper, but hey… Republicans should take any help they can get in Detroit, right?

    Headline of the Day

    h/t DetroitGOP

  • The scope of Obamacare’s lies expands
    Posted December 16, 2013 at 2:19 pm by Meredith Jessup

    Comments (2)

    Jonah Goldberg explains that the notion of Obamacare saving consumers and taxpayers money in the long-run may be an even bigger lie than all of that “you can keep your doctor” nonsense:

    First, Obama promised on numerous occasions that the average family of four will save $2,500 a year in premiums. Where did that number come from? Three Harvard economists wrote a memo in 2007 in which they claimed that then-Senator Obama’s health-care plan would reduce national health-care spending by $200 billion. Then, according to the New York Times, the authors “divided [$200 billion] by the country’s population, multiplied for a family of four, and rounded down slightly to a number that was easy to grasp: $2,500.”

    In September, the Obama administration’s Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services used far more rigorous methods to predict that Obamacare would increase national health-care spending by $621 billion. Using Obama’s own math, that would mean — according to Chris Conover, an economist at the American Enterprise Institute and Duke University — each family of four in America will spend an additional $7,450 thanks to Obamacare.

    Of course, that methodology is still bogus. But it’s probably closer to the truth.

    Continue reading…

  • Guess who Larry King is talking about
    Posted December 16, 2013 at 2:15 pm by Eddie Scarry

    Comments (0)

    Veteran broadcaster Larry King (take one guess):

  • ‘Millionaire Matchmaker’ gives dating advice to Rupert Murdoch
    Posted December 16, 2013 at 1:45 pm by Eddie Scarry

    Comments (2)

    The New York Times, in all earnest, consulted a reality dating show host to offer advice to News Corp. CEO Rupert Murdoch on dating, following his recent divorce:

    Patti Stanger, the star of Bravo’s “Millionaire Matchmaker,” which is based on her mate-finding service in California, was eager to help. “Most billionaires are control freaks, at least by my experience,” she said. “And, with three divorces, he seems to be doing something wrong. I would need to figure out what that is and break him.” Like a horse, apparently.

    Her advice? Avoid gifts of cash, credit cards, condos or cars — the Four C’s. “Those are gifts for a wife, not a girlfriend,” Ms. Stanger said. Mr. Murdoch, at least early on, should avoid going on dates to places that may bring up bad memories of Ms. Deng. (Mental note, interested ladies of Los Angeles: Skip the House of Pies.)

    For his part, Murdoch responded to the weekend Times piece thusly: (more…)

  • Ian Reifowitz is more insane than Andrea Peyser
    Posted December 16, 2013 at 12:30 pm by Eddie Scarry

    Comments (3)

    New York Post columnist Andrea Peyser took her readers to a dark place last week when she wrote on the Obama-”selfie” controversy that the President “flirted, giggled, whispered like a recalcitrant child” with Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt while attending the Nelson Mandela funeral.

    Ian Reifowitz is more insane than Andrea Peyser

    via Twitter.com/ianreifowitz

    In two separate issues, the Post ran photos of Barack Obama with Thorning-Schmidt accompanied by headlines suggesting he was sexually attracted to her.

    Here’s how S.U.N.Y history professor Ian Reifowitz interpreted those covers, writing in the Huffington Post:

    [T]he Post’s front page calls forth one of the most disgusting racist tropes in our country’s history: the sexually aggressive black man pursuing a white woman. And it’s all the better that in this case she’s blond. Over decades, this trope resulted in the lynchings of thousands of black men accused, in some cases, of doing little more than looking a bit too long at a white woman. The brutal murder of Emmett Till falls into this category.

    Really?!

    @eScarry

  • Harry Reid ‘just doesn’t care’
    Posted December 16, 2013 at 11:30 am by Eddie Scarry

    Comments (6)

    Veteran reporter Jon Ralston has covered Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D) for about a quarter of a century. In Politico Magazine, Ralston recalls one of the best Reid anecdotes ever:

    Harry Reid just doesnt care

    AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana

    … I remember in the early 1990s, shortly after I had made the transition from reporter to columnist, asking to speak to him about a column I was working on about him accepting honoraria for speaking engagements. Reid insisted to me that he needed the money to pay for his wife’s medical condition—she has Crohn’s disease—and when I suggested he was quite wealthy and could sell some of his vast real estate holdings (he reported assets of between $2.8 million and $6.3 million earlier this year), he responded by telling me he would not speak to me again if I wrote the column. I don’t believe he said goodbye.

    I wrote it. And Reid cut me off for about two years.

    I still recall the day the freeze-out ended. His longtime assistant, Marge Van Hoove, who died earlier this year, called to tell me the senator wanted to see me in his Las Vegas office. When I sat down in front of him, Reid told me, “I’ve decided to speak to you again.”

    “Senator,” I replied, “you might have noticed that I continued to write about you all of this time. Who do you think lost in this proposition?”

    As if he hadn’t heard me, Reid pivoted and began talking about some policy issue. I remember thinking: He just doesn’t care.

    Indeed, he “just doesn’t care.” It’s a sentiment captured in TheBlaze Blog’s regular feature, “Absolute a**hole or honest?”

  • Video: In defense of Ebenezer Scrooge
    Posted December 16, 2013 at 11:23 am by Meredith Jessup

    Comments (0)

    In a new video this week, Campus Reform‘s Caleb Bonham argues that Charles Dickens’ infamously greedy character is a misunderstood victim of “character assassination,” and a bit of context in 19th century London helps “set the record straight.”

    “Ultimately, Scrooge realized he could treat people with a little more dignity and more respect,” Bonham notes. “And he did so without government force and without a mob of enraged liberals protesting outside of his shop.”

    WATCH:

  • A picture is worth 1,000 words: Joe Biden’s awkward holiday cheer
    Posted December 16, 2013 at 10:46 am by Meredith Jessup

    Comments (3)

    Via the Daily Caller, The Hill‘s White House Correspondent Amie Parnes gets a personal holiday greeting from Vice President Joe Biden:

    For most people’s tastes he’s grazing way too close to the vicinity of her abdomen. And watch her reaction. Is it shock, awe, utter disbelief? Whatever the expression, she appeared to roll with it with her hands firmly in control of his at least until the shot was over.

    A picture is worth 1,000 words: Joe Bidens awkward holiday cheer

    (Image: Facebook/Daily Caller)

    Parnes is no stranger to the vice president’s intimate nature, and Biden’s party picture is reminiscent of another awkward Joe moment:

  • At Al Jazeera America: no audience, no problem (yet)
    Posted December 16, 2013 at 10:30 am by Eddie Scarry

    Comments (1)

    In the short time it’s been on the air, Al Jazeera America has has managed to do the opposite of make waves, shoring up very modest results in terms of ratings and sizzle. BuzzFeed has a look at why that’s just not all that important to the Qatar-funded network:

    “For Al Jazeera America, if its editorial vision is right and correct, ratings are not important,” said Wadah Khanfar, who served as director general of the main Al Jazeera network, which is a separate operation from its U.S. counterpart, from 2003-2011. “When I was with Al Jazeera for eight years the ratings were not the issue. We never had the ratings as an integral part of our vision regarding what should be done and what shouldn’t be done.” …

    What is true about the relationship between Al Jazeera and Qatar internationally is also true with regard to its U.S. network, which is to say that for now it would rather accumulate prestige than profit.

  • 3 foundational books on political philosophy
    Posted December 16, 2013 at 9:27 am by Benjamin Weingarten

    Comments (0)

    Blaze Books sat down with National Review’s roving correspondent, New Criterion theater critic, outspoken libertarian and author of titles including the recently released What Doomed DetroitThe End Is Near and It’s Going to Be Awesome: How Going Broke Will Leave America Richer, Happier, and More Secure and The Politically Incorrect Guide to Socialism, Kevin Williamson, in order to get his book recommendations on a variety of subjects near and dear to readers’ hearts. Below is the second in a multi-part series, in which Williamson gives us the three books that most influenced his political philosophy, followed by some pithy commentary on his selections.

    And in case you missed part I: 3 books for progressives friends and family members for the holidays.

    (more…)

  • ‘Celebrate the Season’ with Calvin Coolidge Christmas cards
    Posted December 16, 2013 at 9:24 am by Meredith Jessup

    Comments (2)

    Share the Christmas spirit with your friends by sending holiday greetings from the Heritage Foundation, featuring all your favs: Calvin Coolidge, Ronald Reagan, Margaret Thatcher and more:

    Celebrate the Season with Calvin Coolidge Christmas cards

  • NPR just got $17M in grant money to ‘re-imagine the public radio experience’
    Posted December 16, 2013 at 9:21 am by Eddie Scarry

    Comments (3)

    Just in from the good people of NPR:

    Four leading foundations and three individual philanthropists are supporting a significant expansion of NPR’s ability to deliver in-depth coverage of news and culture and re-imagine the public radio experience for digital listening. The grants, totaling $17 million, will both deepen and extend NPR’s  coverage of key issues – education, global health and development, and race, ethnicity and culture – and fund NPR and six Member Stations – KPCC, KQED, MPR, WBUR, WHYY and WNYC – in the creation of a seamless local-national listening platform, helping deliver the work of NPR and stations to tens of millions of Americans everywhere they want it, in words, images and sound.

    This work is receiving generous support from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, The Wallace Foundation and Ford Foundation, and individual contributions from Paul Haaga, acting President & CEO of NPR, and Heather Haaga; William Poorvu, former Vice Chair of the NPR Foundation and Trustee emeritus, and Lia Poorvu; and Howard Stevenson, former Chair of the NPR Board and NPR Foundation Trustee, and Fredericka Stevenson…

  • 5 essential books for manly men
    Posted December 16, 2013 at 9:01 am by Benjamin Weingarten

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    The following book recommendations come from a new title that Glenn Beck has described as “game-changing,” Stephen Mansfield’s Mansfield’s Book of Manly Men: An Utterly Invigorating Guide to Being Your Most Masculine Self.

    The below is only a partial book list; you’ll have to purchase the book for the complete one. And be sure to check out mansfieldsbookofmanlymen.com for much much more! 

    Excerpted from Mansfield’s “The Ten Essential Books for Manly Men” section.

    1. Wild at Heart: Discovering the Secret of a Man’s Soul by John Eldredge

    5 essential books for manly men

    This book gave Christian men, and perhaps men of faith generally, the tools for understanding and living out the essential passions of manhood. It also gave them permission to take seriously the “wildness” in their souls. This is a very important book. My favorite sentiment is one Eldredge expresses in a variety of ways: “You ask me, ‘Where are the men?’ I say, ‘You have made them women.”

    2. The Book of Man: Readings on the Path to Manhood by William Bennett

    5 essential books for manly men

    Former secretary of education William Bennett has given men a great gift in this book. It is filled with the reflections speeches, biographies, and seminal writings of some of the most esteemed men in history. From Shakespeare’s rousing St. Crispin’s Day speech in Henry V to an essay on fencing, from the description of a critical moment in Lincoln’s youth to the thoroughly relevant thoughts of Seneca, this magnificent volume allows a man to steep his soul in the thoughts and dreams of our fathers.

    3. Halftime: Moving from Success to Significance by Bob Buford

    5 essential books for manly men

    There is no better book than Buford’s on the transition a man must make in midlife in order to fulfill his purpose and finish his life well. Read it in youth to know what is coming. Read it in midlife so you have a plan. Read it in old age to understand what you have done and can lead others in the same path. 

    4. Future Men by Douglas Wilson

    5 essential books for manly men

    Calling young boys “thunder puppies,” Wilson teaches parents how to respect the emerging manhood in their sons while providing the safe, consistent discipline that allows manhood to thrive, strong and secure.

    5. The Art of Manliness: Classic Skills and Manners for the Modern Man by Brett and Kate McKay

    5 essential books for manly men

    I love the Art of Manliness empire in all its manifestations. The absolutely essential website. Thebooks. The podcasts. You simply don’t want to be without the McKays’ help in your pursuit of vital manhood. You will learn how to carve a turkey one day, how to maintain manly friendships the next, and on the third you will be moved by a discussion of the manly virtues in the Middle Ages. Wonderful.

  • A dip into the pool reports: unimpressed
    Posted December 16, 2013 at 9:00 am by Eddie Scarry

    Comments (4)
    A dip into the pool reports: unimpressed

    AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta

    From a White House pool report filed Sunday by the Dallas Morning News’s Nick Swartsell, who was covering the first family’s attendance at “Christmas in Washington,” an annual concert for charity:

    Actor Hugh Jackman hosts. The lineup is a 1990s nostalgia jackpot, including performances by the Backstreet Boys and Sheryl Crow along with a special guest appearance by retired NBA star and sports commentator Charles Barkley.

    “At this time of year, we’re grateful for the rebounding economy,” Barkley says, playing on his NBA nickname, the “round mound of rebound.”

    Sasha and Malia seem unimpressed by the Backstreet Boys performance, perhaps too young to remember the golden age of boy bands.

  • Monday morning must-reads
    Posted December 16, 2013 at 8:37 am by Meredith Jessup

    Comments (0)

    The Boston bombers & their dysfunctional family

    Obamacare has lost support from the uninsured

    Iowa Republicans heart Paul Ryan

    Al Jazeera America doesn’t care about its low ratings

    Peter O’Toole loved drink, feared the taxman

    Dirty Jobs‘ Mike Rowe chats with Reason.tv:

  • Newt: Boehner’s Tea Party blowup ‘understandable’
    Posted December 16, 2013 at 8:10 am by Eddie Scarry

    Comments (2)

    “Later in my career, I blew up exactly like he did, and I think sometimes it’s healthy. … He had worked very hard to get to this point. They were very battered by the shutdown, and I think he just thought: ‘Why not?’”– CNN “Crossfire” co-host and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich on “This Week” Sunday discussing the budget passed by House Republicans and Speaker John Boehner‘s (R) chastising  of the Tea Party.