Friday, August 2, 2013

Facts, Flim-Flam, Fans, & Fun

As we noted last Friday, the August recess for the staff and members of the U.S. House and Senate begins today - which means at least traffic will be better for us in DC over the weekend. In Nebraska, we're getting ready for Husker Fan Day today, and the start of Husker Football practice on Monday, while in our South Florida office, it's just a weekend off - which is a reason to celebrate anyway.

Before DC becomes as empty and shallow as some of its politicians already are, we wanted to give credit for some great work in the media this week, as well as call out at least one sad example of chicanery.

The award for the slimiest and most unexpected slant-job from a major media organization this week has to go to the Associated Press. Whoever wrote their so-called "Fact Check" on President Obama's comments about jobs and the Keystone pipeline either must be getting a nice subsidy from one of the right-wing billionaires, or they must have had experience as an advance man for a two-bit traveling carnival.

The President's entire reason for mentioning the permanent jobs that Keystone won't generate is because it won't actually generate many permanent jobs, as confirmed both by Cornell University and the State Department! Not only does the AP piece confirm the President indeed told the truth about the permanent jobs numbers. It crams that key bit of information into the last graph of the piece, as though a copy editor might have said to the writer responsible for that dreck"Add this before publishing - or else."

Thankfully, there are a few other people in the media who deserve the kind of praise the writer of this week's AP smear job can only dream of receiving.

Greg Sargent at The Plum Line blog at The Washington Post has been superb lately, about many topics, including the continuing crack-up of the GOP, and Republican's quixotic quest to kill Obamacare. If you haven't read his work lately, or the work of Jonathan Bernstein and Jamelle Bouie, who also sometimes publish at The Plum Line, we highly recommend you click over and check them out.

Our acquaintance Lisa Desjardan at CNN also had an incredible piece that confirmed something we'd been meaning to research ourselves. Thankfully, it's not just our imagination: Part of why Congress is getting less done than they ever have before is because Congress is in DC working far fewer hours and days than they used to.

We also have to give big kudos to Michael Jantze, one of our favorite cartoonists, who is attempting something few have ever even tried before. He's reviving his much-loved, nationally syndicated, daily cartoon strip 'The Norm' through social media and crowd sourced funding. His efforts appear to be paying off well, as his campaign will be bringing "The Norm back to full daily status, which we're incredibly pleased to see. [Also - Full disclosure: Multiple staff members have donated to Jantze's project. Happily.]

No matter what you're doing this weekend, or where you're at, we hope you remember: As important as politics is to us and to most of you, our readers, there's a lot more to life than just Democrats and Republicans, elections and laws.

For example, Husker football...

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