Friday, November 18, 2005

What's Really Happening (That the Media Won't Let You Know About)

House Happenings for This Week
posted by Denny Hastert @ 11:33am (11/18/05)

I hope everyone is well. It’s been a busy week and a long night. We stayed up and passed a bill that’s going to go a long way towards restraining spending and reducing the deficit. I’m proud that we got it done.

I had all these great prepared remarks for the debate but then I heard the Democratic Leader get up there and completely misrepresent the situation. Let me tell you, it was frustrating. I mean, the reason the economy is standing on its feet now is because of Republican policies. We were in a recession under President Clinton – the bubble was bursting. And then 9-11 came and just hit our economy hard. Republicans instituted pro-growth policies. Republicans did it. And look at the economy now – we are reducing the deficit. Homeownership is up. People have jobs. Unemployment is at like 5 percent right now.

So when the members on the other side of the aisle get up and misrepresent, it’s just wrong. And that gets me going.

They complained about the legislation we passed last night because they don’t want to do anything. But here’s the way I see it, the American people have trusted us to do the right thing. Americans are working too hard to have us up here playing with the money and writing blank checks.

This bill – the Deficit Reduction Act – puts us closer to a more efficient, smarter government. That’s what the people want.

Let me give you an example. On Medicaid, the governors – and I’m talking about Republicans and Democrats – have been begging for some market based reforms. These are the folks out in the states – they see the problem up close. And they’re paying 43 percent of Medicaid’s cost. In this bill, we give them the reforms they’ve been wanting. We’re going to allow a demonstration project so that states can offer health savings accounts for Medicaid benefits. It’s something the governors have wanted and it’s in this bill.

The Democrats keep saying we’re “slashing” and “cutting” programs such as Medicaid. If the Democrats would just be honest with everybody, they would be taken more seriously. We are going to pair back the growth rate in Medicaid from 7.3 percent to 7 percent – that’s not even a full percent! And we’re making some needed reforms like the program I just mentioned. We’re making a program better that the Democrats have just sat and watched get bigger and bigger. The Democrats have done nothing – even as Republican and Democrat governors have been begging for reforms!

Like I said, these are commonsense reforms in the bill. But it’s going to make government better and allow states to run better. You know, my colleagues on the other side of the aisle have taken to saying lately ‘we can do better.’ Well, I say let the states do better. They don’t want dictates from Washington. But that’s all the other side wants to do: raise taxes, spend and send orders down to the states. And we all know a tax increase has never created a job – not one.

Let me tell you something else this bill does – it finds $50 billion dollars in savings. It’s going to keep our economic engine roaring. It’s restraining spending. That’s what we need. We don’t write blank checks for our home budgets; we shouldn’t do it with taxpayer money either.

This vote was really about letting members put the money where their mouth is. And now we know where the other side stands. And it’s not on the side of the American people.

You know they seem to have made an agenda out of misrepresentations. Yesterday, I was watching tv and saw (Rep.) John Murtha up there talking about Iraq. He called the Iraq policy an illusion. Now don’t get me wrong, I have respect for John Murtha and his service to our country but that was the biggest show I’ve seen on television in a long time. And I don’t think it was an accident that it was done while the President was out of the country. Our President was on foreign soil and the Democrats were up there criticizing him on the War!

I’m saddened because the Democrats seem to have adopted politics over policy and decided that it’s best to just cut and run from the War on Terror. I don’t see how they can do that because we all saw the devastation of September 11th. The terrorists killed nearly 3,000 people killed on U.S. soil in 45 minutes! And Democrats say it’s time to come home, wave the white flag to the terrorists, give up. We need to be strong and consistent for our men and women serving overseas. They’re protecting us from terrorists.

So I guess on the War on Terror and the budget – all the things important to Americans – the other side wants to debate politics over real policy. It’s sad. But it lets me know the point we’ve come to.

Our Republican members have been meeting and we’re united on this: we want to do right by the American people. We’re not just spouting off this political rhetoric mumbo jumbo. That’s the difference.

Okay, until next time. This is Denny.


At November 18, 2005 9:12 AM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

Media Ignore Congressman Murtha’s Long History Of Opposition to the Iraq War
Posted by Noel Sheppard on November 17, 2005 - 22:33.

As reported by the Media Research Center’s Brent Baker, the network evening news broadcasts tonight all lead with Congressman John Murtha’s (D-Penn.) call for the removal of American troops from Iraq. Yet, they seemed disinterested in focusing much attention on Rep. Murtha's “denouncement” of the Iraq war more than a year ago. (Please see a May 10, 2004 CNN story stating, “Rep. John Murtha, D-Pennsylvania, in a news conference with Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi, D-California, said the problems in Iraq are due to a ‘lack of planning’ by Pentagon chiefs and ‘the direction has got be changed or it is unwinnable.’") Maybe most important, the networks totally ignored the fact that Rep. Murtha has been expressing disgust with the Bush administration’s prosecution of this war since six months after it started.

Rep. Murtha first voiced his displeasure with how things were going in Iraq on September 16, 2003, when he called for the immediate firing of President Bush’s defense leadership team. The network news organizations this evening chose not to inform their viewers of this, and, instead, implied that Rep. Murtha was a "hawk" that has always supported this war, and that his statements today were recent revelations.

Quite the contrary, the New York Times reported on September 17, 2003 (link courtesy of Common

At November 18, 2005 9:20 AM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

The mainstream media has become just another "reality" show. I had hopes that they could turn themselves around once these errors were pointed out to them and they had a good faith interest in reporting the truth.

But they've been touting non-discrimination so long, they've lost their ability to discriminate between the truth and deception, good and bad, and thus, have made themselves useless and shills for the con-artists of the world.

They cannot be relied upon for any useful information. Fortunately, in these times, it is easy to create alternatives -- and that apparently, is the wave of the future. This is what this blog is all about. (Blog is just short for online publication).

At November 18, 2005 9:32 AM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

By non-discrimination policies, it was their intention that we, the public, no longer could tell any difference -- and so would be helplessly and hopelessly dependent on their (the propaganda machine) doing our thinking for us -- as the editors of the local newspapers always vulunteer to do as their public service project.

The meaning of the Republican Party in Hawaii is that it is the only viable alternative viewpoint that hasn't been crushed by the powers that would like to remain in power for as long as we allow them to be.

At November 19, 2005 10:31 PM, Blogger Mike Hu said...

Newspapers in Turmoil
by Isaiah Z. Sterrett
18 November 2005

Consumers will only return to newspapers if they are allowed, once again, to believe what they read.

Sometimes, try as one might to adhere to at least the basic seriousness required for analysis of the media, it’s important to step back and examine -- from a self-imposed distance -- the state of affairs. Now is one of those times.

We have, on the one hand, my favorite newspaper, the Washington Post, substituting as the Nation’s Paper, as the New York Times is still recovering from its Judith Miller fiasco. Though the Miller story certainly does not represent a press corps shilling for President Bush, as some have laughably suggested, it does represent a press corps starving for the long-gone days of pre-Internet, pre-cable news America, in which print journalists, as the sole arbiters of truth, reigned supreme. The media are so hungry for power -- or even mere significance -- that they’ve begun eating their own.

On the other hand, in a very depressing development, we have the Post going absolutely daft, recently headlining a story on its Website thus: “Exercise Increases Life Span.” Check back tomorrow for “New Study Shows Rainbows Often Follow Rain.”

Even so, the Post remains superior to the Great Gray Lady. Historically, the only real reason to read the New York Times -- save for maybe its coverage of the world’s more obscure regions, an area of journalism in which the Times excels -- was the Op-Ed Page. Sadly, however, due to a tremendous droop in readership, one must now pay for Op-Ed, which I simply won’t do. Accordingly, my insatiable thirst for the witticisms of Maureen Dowd has been left to fester. All that remains for me is her new book, Are Men Necessary?, in which she attempts to explore female sexuality through anecdotes about neurophysiology and stiletto pumps.

It’s a world gone mad when one finds oneself turning to Maureen Dowd for measured journalism.

Americans, of late, have focused almost exclusively on the problems of the White House, but have failed to detect the problems of the press. The media have literally spent the last few months philosophizing about President Bush’s falling ratings while at the same time ignoring their own. The thought of Bush losing Karl “Architect” Rove has so tantalized the New York Times that the paper has neglected to address its recent loss of hundreds of employees.

Ivor Ries, a former business journalist and commentator, told Australia’s The Age that he “can quite confidently predict that if the big newspaper companies around the world do not learn how to turn their print audience into an internet audience they will be bankrupt.” The piece notes, further, that problems for newspapers are by no means exclusive to the New York Times. Papers forced to downsize now include Philadelphia’s Daily News, the Philadelphia Inquirer, the Los Angeles Times, Baltimore’s The Sun, Newsday, and the San Jose Mercury News.

“The biggest herd is still in traditional media,” Ries says, “but we're getting to the point where, with the current levels of household penetration of broadband, very soon the herd will be on the net.”

Contrary to what some would probably like (i.e., Matt Drudge), the Internet needn’t take over the media. It certainly may, if newspapers like the Times don’t act, but this is not a necessary development. The reason people have stopped buying papers is that they realize, as well they should, that newspapers are not the bastions of impartiality that they may once have been. Today, newspapers are where we find Jayson Blair, Judith Miller, and a consistent deluge of Bush-bashing editorials. Consumers will only return to newspapers if they are allowed, once again, to believe -- at least to a healthy extent -- what they read.

This will not happen overnight, but it can start tomorrow morning. Newspapers need to take a break from front-page activism. The ninety-seventh story on Scooter Libby -- which is essentially the same as the first -- need not be written, much less printed. We don’t need another headline screaming about Abu Ghraib or weapons of mass destruction; we need news, plainly and objectively written. I don’t know if the Times has ever been free of its current style, but maybe it should try it. In the meantime, our only hope is Maureen Dowd’s wisdom on relationships, “new love,” and “The Drag of Going Stag.”

Isaiah Z. Sterrett, a resident of Aptos, California, is a Lifetime Member of the California Junior Scholarship Federation and a Sustaining Member of the Republican National Committee.


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