Still good news for President Obama in the latest of four CBS News/New York Times polls done since April of 2009 on the question of:
Most to Blame for the Condition of the Economy
Bush 26% 28 30 33
Wall Street 25 22 29 21
Congress 11 10 12 11
Obama 8 7 4 2
All 7 7 6 7
In Minnesota, the Democratic Governor, Mark Dayton, and GOP legislators are locked in a battle over how to close the state’s $5 billion budget deficit—with progressive tax hikes or with even more big budget cuts—eerily calling to mind our larger national issue.
And as the case with our national deficit, much of it is due to a former Republican executive, in this case Tim Pawlenty. Rather than seek another term as the state’s governor and help fix the problems he left, Pawlenty, no doubt in a spasm of selfless patriotism, is seeking to bring his governing wisdom and fiscal responsibility to Washington, where, God knows, we don’t have enough Republican experts on how to ruin the economy and undermine government.
The deadline to avoid a government shutdown in Minnesota is midnight. Tick, tock.
President Obama continues to suffer indignity after indignity at the hands of either right-wingers—Glenn Beck calling him a racist who hates white folks and Joe Wilson shouting “You lie!” at him during an address to Congress—or comedians—Jon Stewart addressing him as “dude” on The Daily Show—or journalists, like this morning when a big-time editor of Time magazine, Mark Halperin, called Obama a, uh, “dick” on Morning Joe.
MSNBC suspended Halperin, who is a regular on Joe Scarborough’s program and an analyst for the network. And Halperin apologized.
I was watching the event and I must say that I was personally offended by the fact that it was part of his wrongheaded “analysis” of yesterday’s press conference. Halperin, who is paid handsomely to offer insightful critiques of such things, was dead wrong about Obama’s performance.
The Time editor thought the President should not have been so rough on those mistreated Republicans and should have tried to understand John Boehner’s inability to get the votes to pass a budget deal that included tax increases and not have acted so, well, so dick-like by insisting that at least some (but not nearly enough) reality be part of the debate.
Halperin’s stunningly bad analysis was at least as offensive as the D word.
And speaking of dicks and MSNBC, what’s up with former MSNBC star Keith Olbermann? First he leaves MSNBC and begins another version of “Countdown” on Al Gore’s Current TV network, competing with Lawrence O’Donnell, who occupies Olbermann’s old spot on MSNBC with a show called The Last Word.
By the way, O’Donnell’s program is in many ways better than Olbermann’s original show. O’Donnell is able to get opposition political guests on, which makes for entertaining television, and his “Rewrite” segment is often the best single segment on any cable news show. And O’Donnell has worked in Congress, six years as an aid and senior advisor to Daniel Patrick Moynihan and a couple of years as the staff director of the Senate Finance Committee, maybe the most powerful committee in Congress.
In any case, Olbermann first tried to run his new show a little past the hour so as to cut into his former colleague Rachel Maddow’s show, but was duly criticized by his “fans,” and then apologized and pulled back to ending on the hour. Then on Tuesday Olbermann tweeted (God, I hate that word and that method of communication) the latest ratings for O’Donnell, which dropped 12% in correlation with the debut of Olbermann’s new show (whose viewership is less than half of O’Donnell’s).
Jeeze, I used to like Olbermann, but this kind of behavior is so petty and so unnecessary. With all the right-wing nuttery out there, one would think Olbermann would spend every single minute of his time taking care of that business rather than trying to embarrass fellow liberals.
Finally, Glenn Beck’s last show is tonight, in case you want to find out how the world ends. After many episodes of leading us to believe that our demise is near, surely tonight we will have the demented denouement.
Prediction: There will be plenty of references to his “new” gig away from Fox, just in case Obama doesn’t destroy the country anytime soon.